Casiodoro de Reina
DiedMarch 15, 1594(1594-03-15) (aged 73–74)
Notable workBiblia del Oso

Casiodoro de Reina or de Reyna (c. 1520 – 15 March 1594) was a Spanish theologian who (perhaps with several others) translated the Bible into Spanish.

Early life

Reina was born about 1520 in Montemolín in the Province of Badajoz.[1][2] From his youth onward, he studied the Bible.[1]

In 1557, he was a monk of the Hieronymite Monastery of St. Isidore of the Fields, outside Seville (Monasterio Jerónimo de San Isidoro del Campo de Sevilla).[3] Around then, he had contact with Lutheranism and he became an adherent of the Protestant Reformation. He fled with about a dozen other monks when they came under suspicion by the Spanish Inquisition for Protestant tendencies to Geneva[3] But he was not comfortable with the atmosphere and the doctrinaire rigidity around John Calvin. In 1558, Reina declared that Geneva had become "a new Rome" and left.

Reina travelled in 1559[4] to London, where he served as a pastor to Spanish Protestant refugees. However King Philip II of Spain was exerting pressure for his extradition.

In exile on the Continent

In the late 1550s he was suspected by the Spanish inquisitors in Seville to have been the one who converted the monks of San Isidro to Lutheranism.[5] in April 1562, the Inquisition made an auto-da-fé in which an effigy of him was burned. The works of Reina and his colleagues were placed in the Index of prohibited books and he was declared a "heresiarch" (leader of heretics).

About 1563[4] Reina went on to Antwerp, where he became associated with the authors of the Polyglot Bible. In April 1564 he went to Frankfurt, where he settled with his family.[4]

Reina wrote the first great book against the Inquisition: Sanctae Inquisitionis hispanicae artes aliquot detectae, ac palam traductae ("Some arts of Holy Inquisition"). This work was printed in 1567 in Heidelberg under the pseudonym: Reginaldus Gonsalvius Montanus.

He secretly translated the work of the critic of Calvin, Sebastian Castellion, De haereticis, an sint persequendi ("Concerning heretics, whether they should be Persecuted"), that condemned executions "for reasons of conscience" and documented the original Christian rejection of the practice.

Biblical translation

While in exile, variously in London, Antwerp, Frankfurt, Orléans and Bergerac, funded by various sources (such as Juan Pérez de Pineda) Reina began translating the Bible into Spanish by using a number of works as source texts. For the Old Testament, the work appears to have made extensive use of the Ferrara Bible in Ladino, with comparisons to the Masoretic Text and the Vetus Latina. The New Testament derives from the Textus Receptus of Erasmus, with comparisons to the Vetus Latina and Syriac manuscripts. For the New Testament, he had great aid from the translations of Francisco de Enzinas and Juan Pérez de Pineda.

Reina was granted citizenship by Frankfurt on 16 August 1571. He worked as a silk trader to make money for his family. In 1574, he bought the library of Johannes Oporinus at an auction in Basel[6] who had died in July 1568. With Oporinus he unsuccessfully attempted to publish the first Bible in the Spanish language before he died for which he advanced 400 guilders.[7] It is speculated that Reina's Bible, published in Switzerland in 1569, which became the basis of the Reina-Valera Bible, was a composite work of the expatriate Isidorean community, done by several different hands, with Reina the first among them.

Step by step, he became a true member of the Lutherans. Around 1580, he published a Catechism, in the sense of Luther's Catechism, in Latin, French and Dutch.[8]


Reina died in 1594 in Frankfurt.[4]


Beside his Spanish Bible translation he published other works:[4][9]


  1. ^ a b Hermann Dechent: Reina. In: Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (ADB). Band 27, Duncker & Humblot, Leipzig 1888, S. 720–723. (in German)
  2. ^ Balderas, Eduardo. "How the Scriptures Came to Be Translated into Spanish", Ensign, September 1972.
  3. ^ a b Gilly, Carlos (1985). Spanien und der Basler Buchdruck bis 1600: ein Querschnitt durch die spanische Geistesgeschichte aus der Sicht einer europäischen Buchdruckerstadt (in German). Helbing & Lichtenhahn. pp. 353–354. ISBN 3-7190-0909-2.
  4. ^ a b c d e Erich Wenneker (1994). "REINA, Cassiodoro di". In Bautz, Traugott (ed.). Biographisch-Bibliographisches Kirchenlexikon (BBKL) (in German). Vol. 7. Herzberg: Bautz. cols. 1524–1528. ISBN 3-88309-048-4.
  5. ^ Gilly, Carlos (1985).,p.354
  6. ^ Gilly, Carlos (2001). Die Manuskripte in der Bibliothek des Johannes Oporinus (in German). Basel: Schwabe Verlag. pp. 22–23.
  7. ^ Gilly, Carlos (2001). pp.18–19
  8. ^ compare Hermann Dechent: Reina. In Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (ADB). Band 27, Duncker & Humblot, Leipzig 1888, S. 720–723. (in German)
  9. ^ Inquiries with the: Karlsruher Virtuellen Katalog


Further reading