(initial capital letter) a group of 14 books, not considered canonical, included in the Septuagint and the Vulgate as part of the Old Testament, but usually omitted from Protestant editions of the Bible.
various religious writings of uncertain origin regarded by some as inspired, but rejected by most authorities.
writings, statements, etc., of doubtful authorship or authenticity.
Compare 1 (defs 6, 7, 9).
Historical Examples

The apocrypha is not a barrier, but a bridge; it does not separate, but unite the two Covenants.
The Expositor’s Bible: Alfred Plummer

Have you been working up the apocrypha as I recommended you last time we met?’
Robert Elsmere Mrs. Humphry Ward

As it is said in the apocrypha, “his talk is of bullocks:” I do not suppose he is very fond of my company.
Life of Johnson James Boswell

But these exact words, unfortunately, were only to be found in the apocrypha.
Bunyan James Anthony Froude

Verily, I say unto you, that it is not needful that the apocrypha should be translated.
History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints Joseph Smith

The name never occurs in the apocrypha or the New Testament.
Byeways in Palestine James Finn

Anecdote and apocrypha have yet to evolve into hallowed tradition.
The Fourth R George Oliver Smith

These are only to be found in the apocrypha, and in all of them the Elephant is described as an engine of war.
Bible Animals; J. G. Wood

If you would be instructed and amused with antiquity, read the life of Moses in the article on “apocrypha.”
A Philosophical Dictionary, Volume 8 (of 10) Franois-Marie Arouet (AKA Voltaire)

Bois was a member of the company to which the apocrypha was assigned.
Lectures on Bible Revision Samuel Newth

noun (functioning as singular or pl) the Apocrypha
the 14 books included as an appendix to the Old Testament in the Septuagint and the Vulgate but not included in the Hebrew canon. They are not printed in Protestant versions of the Bible
(RC Church) another name for the Pseudepigrapha

late 14c., neuter plural of Late Latin apocryphus “secret, not approved for public reading,” from Greek apokryphos “hidden; obscure,” thus “(books) of unknown authorship” (especially those included in the Septuagint and Vulgate but not originally written in Hebrew and not counted as genuine by the Jews), from apo- “away” (see apo-) + kryptein “to hide” (see crypt). Properly plural (the single would be Apocryphon or apocryphum), but commonly treated as a collective singular.
Apocrypha [(uh-pok-ruh-fuh)]

Religious writings that have been accepted as books of the Bible by some groups but not by others. The Roman Catholic Church, for example, includes seven books, such as Judith, I and II Maccabees, and Ecclesiasticus, in the Old Testament that Jews and Protestants do not consider part of the Bible. Some churches may read the Apocrypha for inspiration but not to establish religious doctrine.

Note: By extension, an “apocryphal” story is one that is probably false but nevertheless has some value.

hidden, spurious, the name given to certain ancient books which found a place in the LXX. and Latin Vulgate versions of the Old Testament, and were appended to all the great translations made from them in the sixteenth century, but which have no claim to be regarded as in any sense parts of the inspired Word. (1.) They are not once quoted by the New Testament writers, who frequently quote from the LXX. Our Lord and his apostles confirmed by their authority the ordinary Jewish canon, which was the same in all respects as we now have it. (2.) These books were written not in Hebrew but in Greek, and during the “period of silence,” from the time of Malachi, after which oracles and direct revelations from God ceased till the Christian era. (3.) The contents of the books themselves show that they were no part of Scripture. The Old Testament Apocrypha consists of fourteen books, the chief of which are the Books of the Maccabees (q.v.), the Books of Esdras, the Book of Wisdom, the Book of Baruch, the Book of Esther, Ecclesiasticus, Tobit, Judith, etc. The New Testament Apocrypha consists of a very extensive literature, which bears distinct evidences of its non-apostolic origin, and is utterly unworthy of regard.


Read Also:

  • Apocryphal

    of doubtful authorship or authenticity. Ecclesiastical. (initial capital letter) of or relating to the Apocrypha. of doubtful sanction; uncanonical. false; spurious: He told an apocryphal story about the sword, but the truth was later revealed. Contemporary Examples At least half of an apocryphal story known as the Ascension of Isaiah can be attributed to Christian […]

  • Apocryphal gospels

    plural noun accounts of Christ’s life that are not recognized as part of the New Testament Historical Examples The basis of the tale which Italian painters told for century after century is found in two of the apocryphal gospels. A Popular Handbook to the National Gallery, Volume I, Foreign Schools Various They must not be […]

  • Apocynaceous

    belonging to the Apocynaceae, the dogbane family of plants. adjective of, relating to, or belonging to the Apocynaceae, a family of mostly tropical flowering plants with latex in their stems, including the dogbane, periwinkle, oleander, and some lianas

  • Apocynthion

    noun the point at which a spacecraft in lunar orbit is farthest from the moon Compare apolune, pericynthion

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