Bible texts in Somali

publ. in 1900

Reinisch, Leo. “Biblische Texte”, in his Die Somali-Sprache; vol. 1: Texte. Vienna: A. Hölder [for the Kaiserliche Akademie der Wissenschaften], 1900, pp. 1-73. [The story of Joseph; Moses’ mission and legislation; excerpts from the stories of Samson, Ruth, David, Job as well as of the Gospels according to Matthew and Mark; view Internet Archive]

1908, 1937

Shekada ilmiga tan yar. Translation of Julius Knecht’s Kurze biblische Geschichte für die unteren Schuljahre der Volksschule [engl.: The child’s bible history] by an anon. OFM Cap missionary. Freiburg: Herder, 1908. [Cf. Rijks, Guide, p. 158]

  • Reprinted in 1937

Palermo, Padre Giovanni Maria da. “Narrazioni sacre”, in his
Grammatica della lingua somala. With a preface by Luigi Salol.
Asmara: Tipografia Francescana, Missione Cattolica, 1914, pp. 277-289 [Excerpts from the OT and NT.]


Anjilka sidu digey Marko [The Gospel According to Mark]. London:
British and Foreign Bible Society, 1915. [View online]

  • Coldham, Bibliography, # 2719:
    “translated by P. Ohlssen, Swedish Evangelical National Society, assisted by nationals, including Daher bin Abdi”
  • Coldham, Bibliography, # 2720:
    “Rowling and Wilson record an edition of the Gospels, translated by P. Ohlssen”

Anjilki ghudusah sidi udigey Yohana [The Holy Gospel According to
John]. London: British and Foreign Bible Society, 1929. [View online]

  • Coldham, Bibliography, # 2721:
    “translated by P. Ohlssen and Mousa, and seen through the press by J. Ethelston Cheese, a chaplain in Ethiopia.”
  • Reprint: 1949.

Injilka Qodusah e ʿlsa Kristos Rabbigena o Badrinta iyo
Kristanka Somalied e Missionka Berbera (ilama sannadii
1910) “Vulgate” kaga rogen af Somali
[The Gospel of Our Lord
Jesus Christ, translated from the Vulgate by the (Catholic) Fathers of the Mission at Berbera (till 1910) and Christian Somalis]. Diré-Daoua
[Diredawa, Ethiopia]: Imprimerie St. Lazare, Mission Catholique, 1935. [Reissued by Catholic Mission Press in Aden, n.d.]
[Cf. Coltham, Supplement, # 491]


lnjilka sida Lukos u qorey [The Gospel According to Luke]. Nairobi:
Bible Society of Kenya, 1969.

  • Cf. Coltham, Supplement, # 492:
    “translated by Dorothy and H. Warren Modricker, SIM, Yusuf Nur ‘Ise, Yusuf Salad, Adan Jimale Farah, and a Committee”

_ _ _ [St. Mark]. Addis Ababa: Bible Society of Ethiopia, 1971.

  • Cf. Coltham, Supplement, # 493:
    “Translated by A. Keene Spitler, SIM”

Ahhdiga ʿUsub o Rabbigena iyo Badbadiyyehena ʿIse Masihh [The New Testament of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ]. Nairobi:
Bible Society of Kenya, 1972.

  • Cf. Coltham, Supplement, # 494:
    “translated by D. and H. K. Modricker, Y.N. ‘Ise, Y. Salad, A. J. Farah and a Committee”
  • Revised edition in the national Somali orthography: Nairobi: Bible Society of Kenya, 1976.

Kitaabka quduuska ah [The Holy Book]. Canada: Sudan Interior Mission, 1979.


Bilowgii: Kitaabkii kowaad ee Nebi Muuse oo la yidhaahdo
[Genesis: The First Book of Prophet Moses, Called Genesis].
Nairobi: Sudan Interior Mission, 1981.

Maahmaahyadii laga helo Axdiga Hore ee Kitaabka Ilaah [The
Proverbs Which Are Found in the Old Testament of God’s Book].
Nairobi: SIM, 1981.

Injiilka sida Luukos u qoray [The Gospel According to Luke]. Nairobi:
Bible Society of Kenya and Sudan Interior Mission, 1981.


Injiisha waxa weye Axdiga Cusub e Yesuc Masiixa [The Gospels,
That Is The New Testament of Jesus Christ]. Nairobi: Evangel Publishing House, 1983.

No date [in national Somali Orthography]

Kitaabkii lshacyaah [The Book of Isaiah]. Krimpen, The Netherlands: C.R.A., n.d.

Kitaabkii labad ee Muuse oo la yidhaahdo Baxniintii [The Second
Book of Moses, called Exodus]. South Holland, IL: World Home
Bible League, n.d.

Sabuurrada laga helo Axdiga Hore ee Kitaabka Ilaah [The Psalms
Which Are Found in the Old Testament of God’s Book]. South
Holland, IL: World Horne Bible League, n.d.

Further reading

Andrzejewski, B. W. “Biblical Translations and other Christian Writings in Somali: A Survey”, in Afrikanistische Arbeitspapiere (Cologne) 21 (1990): 105-21. [View online]

Coldham, Geraldine E. (compiler). A Bibliography of Scriptures in African Languages: A revision of the African sections of the Darlow and Moule ‘Historical Catalogue of Printed Editions of the Holy Scripture’, with additions to 1964. 2 vols. London: The British and Foreign Bible Society, 1966.

—. Supplement (1964 ‒ 1974) to A Bibliography of Scriptures in African Languages (BFBS, London, 1966). London: British and Foreign Bible Society, 1975.

» To read the Somali Bible Society Journal and Bible-related books, visit the website of the Somali Bible Society