Jesus Heals a Leper / a "man with a dreaded skin disease"


Senior Member
German;southern tendencies
Hi all,

In a book that contains the Gospel according to Mark in five languages, I've seen that only the English version says "Jesus Heals a Man" and "A man suffering from a dreaded skin disease came to Jesus,..." — while the texts in the other four languages all call the disease by its name and use the respective equivalents of "...Heals a Leper" and "A man suffering from leprosy...".

Can anyone think of a reason why (only) the English version makes an exeption here?

The book was published in Italy, but in the introduction to the English version it says that the final version of the translation into English "has been approved by the United Bible Societies and by the competent ecclesiastical authorities of the Roman Catholic Church in USA, England and Wales."

  • entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    There's a footnote in one of the versions saying that the Greek word referred to various skin diseases, not specifically leprosy. This is likely to be modern pickiness. The Authorized Version says:

    And there came a leper to him, beseeching him, and kneeling down to him, and saying unto him, If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. (Mark 1:40)


    Senior Member
    English English
    Alternatively it could be an example of dumbing-down ~ the translators assuming that some people won't have heard of leprosy.

    I hope the translators will forgive me for thinking their version decidedly pathetic. I've had both impetigo and eczema and dread ever having them again. But they're not quite in the same category as leprosy ...
    Last edited:


    English - UK
    I wonder whether there may be some PC reason for not using 'a leper'? It does carry some negative connotations these days, I suspect.
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