When Robert Allan first opened the doors…..

February 12th, 2010 | By Nicholas Gray | Category: Bibles Direct Latest, RL Allans Limited Editions

When Robert Allan first opened the doors of his Bible publishing office on Glasgow’s famous Sauchiehall Street back in 1863, he could hardly have dreamed that almost 150 years later, those same storefront premises would house a French patisserie selling continental delicacies.

In 1903 a couple of blocks away, my grandfather started work as a Christian publisher, and then in 1970 my father merged our family business with the Allan Bible firm .

Robert Allan was a ‘King James’ man - in Victorian times there wasn’t much choice.  The KJV was The Bible, so R. L .Allan became known for our fine-bound Authorized Version Bibles, and still are today.

But that singularity changed in the 1970s with a tidal wave of modern English translations, such as the New International Version, Good News and Living Bibles. I’ve had a hand in the publishing of all of them at some stage or other – editing, printing or distributing them. Suddenly Bible choice became a la carte!  Now Allan Bibles are made in a range of popular translations.

Back to Sauchiehall Street. Today, you’ll find among those very fine cakes on display a confection known as a religieuse – a delicious choux pastry in the shape of a French nun. It’s a work of culinary art which you can’t help but devour slowly and with relish.

Maybe a bit like an Allan Bible?  Beautifully made by craftsmen with great care and providing spiritual nourishment for a hungry generation of Bible lovers. “O taste and see that the Lord is good”. Psalm 34:8 KJV.

A  chocolate religieuse may be my idea of a dream pastry.  What is your idea of a perfect Bible?

Bon appetit!

Nicholas Gray

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