(c. 347–c. 420 C.E.) A Bible scholar, priest, and monastic leader and for three years secretary to Pope Damasus in Rome. Jerome’s Latin name was Eusebius Hieronymus; he was born in Stridon, in the Roman province of Dalmatia.
Jerome is especially known for his translation of the Bible. Called the Vulgate, his translation was in the common, or popular, Latin of the day so that it could be easily understood by the ordinary people of the Western Roman Empire. The Vulgate was not just a revision of earlier Latin versions. Jerome endeavored to translate directly from the original languages, Hebrew and Greek, as well as from the Greek Septuagint. He spent the last 34 years of his life in Bethlehem, near Jerusalem, where he presided over a monastery, furthered his knowledge of Hebrew, and completed his translation of the Hebrew Scriptures. While the completed work included apocryphal books, which were by his time found in copies of the Septuagint, Jerome clearly distinguished between the books that were canonical and those that were not.
In the course of his research, Jerome made an important discovery: The best Septuagint manuscripts available to him contained God’s name in the form of the Tetragrammaton. Nevertheless, Jerome felt that this name was just one of what he considered to be ten names for God, thus confusing God’s proper name with His titles. In his translation, Jerome substituted two of those titles—Lord and God—for the divine name.