First-edition Book of Mormon sells at auction for $80, - The Salt Lake TribuneThe Book of Mormon is a sacred text of the Latter Day Saint movement , which adherents believe contains writings of ancient prophets who lived on the American continent from approximately BC to AD According to Smith's account and the book's narrative, the Book of Mormon was originally written in otherwise unknown characters referred to as " reformed Egyptian "  engraved on golden plates. Smith said that the last prophet to contribute to the book, a man named Moroni , buried it in the Hill Cumorah in present-day Manchester, New York before his death, and then returned to Earth in as an angel ,  revealing the location of the plates to Smith, and instructing him to translate the plates into English for use in the restoration of Christ's true church in the latter days. Critics claim that it was authored by Smith, drawing on material and ideas from contemporary 19th-century works rather than translating an ancient record. The Book of Mormon has a number of original and distinctive doctrinal discussions on subjects such as the fall of Adam and Eve ,  the nature of the Christian atonement ,  eschatology , redemption from physical and spiritual death,  and the organization of the latter-day church.
Title page, from the Book of Mormon (1830 edition)
The 1830 Book of Mormon Text
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In this study we will show that there have been at least 3, changes made in the Book of Mormon from the time it was first published in In making this study we obtained photocopies of an original edition of the Book of Mormon from the University of Utah Library. This copy was donated to the library by the Mormon Apostle John A. After comparing the first edition of the Book of Mormon with the edition we marked the changes on the photocopies of the edition. Therefore, the text is an exact photographic reproduction of the first edition of the Book of Mormon, and the handwriting shows the changes that would have to be made in the text to bring it into conformity with the edition. We have not tried to show capitalization or punctuation changes in this study.
It is a first edition of the Book of Mormon. My great-great-grandfather received it in Massachusetts and brought it out west through Missouri and finally to Salt Lake and then Oregon. There were five early editions of the Book of Mormon published that are extremely significant to the LDS faith, the first edition of being the most important, but also the Kirtland, the Nauvoo, the Liverpool and the Nauvoo. So this has been continuously in your family since three years after the birth of Mormonism. Can you tell me a little bit about the writing on there? GUEST: Yes, the first part was from my great-great-grandfather, and he dated it there, November 30, , that he received it from some gentleman from Ohio and signed it. APPRAISER: It's really quite remarkable because in my almost four decades in the rare book business, this is the oldest copy in the sense of being under continuous ownership that I have ever come across before.