TYNDALE (or TINDALE), WILLIAM (c. 1492-1536), translator of the New Testament and Pentateuch (see BIBLE, ENGLISH), was born on the Welsh border, probably in Gloucester shire, some time between 1490 and 1495. In Easter term 15io he went to Oxford, where Foxe says he was entered at Magdalen Hall. He took his M.A. degree in 1515 and removed to Cam bridge, where Erasmus had helped to establish a reputation for Greek and theology. Ordained to the priesthood, probably to wards the close of 1521, he entered the household of Sir John Walsh, Old Sodbury, Gloucestershire, as chaplain and domestic tutor. Here he lived for two years, using his leisure in preach ing in the villages and at Bristol, conduct which brought him into collision with the backward clergy of the district, and led to his being summoned before the chancellor of Worcester (William of Malvern) as a suspected heretic ; but he was allowed to depart without receiving censure or being given any undertaking.
the authority of Scripture in the Church and the supremacy of the king in the state, and Practyse of Prelates (153o), a strong in dictment of the Roman Church and also of Henry VIII.'s divorce
proceedings, were all printed at Marburg. In 1529 on his way to Hamburg he was wrecked on the Dutch coast, and lost his newly completed translation of Deuteronomy. Later in the year he went to, Antwerp where he conducted his share of the classic contro versy with Sir Thomas More.
After Henry VIII.'s change of attitude towards Rome, Stephen Vaughan, the English envoy to the Netherlands, suggested Tyn dale's return, but the reformer feared ecclesiastical hostility and declined. Henry then demanded his surrender from the emperor as one who was spreading sedition in England, and Tyndale left Antwerp for two years, returning in 1533 and busying himself with revising his translations. In May 1535 he was betrayed by Henry Phillips, to whom he had shown much kindness, as a professing student of the new faith. The imperial officers imprisoned him at Vilvorde the state prison, 6 m. from Brussels, where in spite of the great efforts of the English merchants and the appeal of Thomas Cromwell to Archbishop Carandolet, president of the council, and to the governor of the castle, he was tried for heresy and condemned. On Oct. 6,1536 he was strangled at the stake and his body afterwards burnt.
Though long an exile from his native land, Tyndale was one of the greatest forces of the English Reformation. His writings show sound scholarship and high literary power, while they helped to shape the thought of the Puritan party in England. His trans lation of the Bible was so sure and happy that it formed the basis of subsequent renderings, especially that of the authorized version of 1611. Besides the New Testament, the Pentateuch and Jonah, it is believed that he finished in prison the section of the Old Testament extending from Joshua to Chronicles.
Beside the works already named Tyndale wrote A Prologue on the Epistle to the Romans (1526), An Exposition of the 1st Epistle of John (1531), An Exposition of Matthew v.–vii. (1532), a treatise on the sacraments (1533), and possibly another (no longer extant) on matrimony (1529).
The works of Tyndale were first published along with those pf John Frith (q.v.) and Robert Barnes, "three worthy martyrs and principal teachers of the Church of England," by John Day, in 1573 (folio). A new edition of the works of Tyndale and Frith, by T. Russell, was published at London (1828-1831). His Doctrinal Treat ises and Introductions to Different Portions of the Holy Scripture were published by the Parker Society in 1848. For biography, see Foxe's Acts and Monuments; R. Demaus, William Tyndale (1871) ; also the Introduction to Mombert's critical reprint of Tyndale's Pentateuch (1884), where a bibliography is given.