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I found an audio version of Das Buch Mormon online here: http://batesbunch.com/dbm/. I was hoping to read along with it for German study, but I found that the currently published Das Buch Mormon (2003) doesn't match the recording.

There was a previous publication of Das Buch Mormon in 1852, and it believe that this may be the text used in the recording. However, I am unable to find the text for it online.

Where can I find the full text of the 1852 publication of Das Buch Mormon?

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The recording of Das Buch Mormon appears to have been digitized from cassette tapes produced by the Church, based on information from the site's home page. Recordings were most likely produced from the 1980 edition of the German Book of Mormon – the edition that preceded the current 2003 edition – which explains why the recordings are no longer published by the Church.

The Book of Mormon Project has a PDF that appears to have text from the 1980 edition of the Book of Mormon – based on the copyright date (1985). I don't speak German, so you'll have to let us know if it's the correct edition. :) I was also able to find several used versions of the book in print, for sale online.

From what I can tell, there have been 4 actual translations of the Book of Mormon into German over the years, each of which has had several printings or editions: 1852, 1959, 1980, and 2003. I found some good historical information in the Journal of Book of Mormon Studies, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, and Deseret News. I expect there will be a new edition in the next year or two that includes updates from the 2013 edition of the English scriptures, as similar updates have been published in other languages – most recently French, Italian, and Dutch. The current edition of the German Book of Mormon can be found on LDS.org.

If you are interested in looking at the first translation of the German Book of Mormon (1852), which is in the public domain, you can find scans at Archive.org and on Google Books (links below). Good luck parsing the old German Fraktur!

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  • Thanks! The PDF form the Book of Mormon Project was just what I needed. It matches the available audio files. That's pretty lucky that someone had hand-typed the whole edition. – Nate Glenn Sep 4 '17 at 13:32
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Part of the problem is the history of that particular book. Published in 1852, when the Iron Curtain fell over East Germany all religious books published 1920 and later had to be destroyed. Though it had to be smuggled into the country, the Soviet government generally allowed the 1852 edition to be kept and used. This over-use of the edition made it a rare LDS book. Available editions are now valued at $110,000. Most of the existing editions today are held by libraries.

The University of Utah and Brigham Young University both have microfilm copies and may be able to produce a duplicate for you. Stanford University Also appears to have this ability, but it's not 100% clear from the page I've listed.

There's undoubtadly a copy in Church Archives, but it's less likely they'll have the facilities to reproduce the book.

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Here is a digital copy of the 1852 Buch Mormon!

https://reader.digitale-sammlungen.de/de/fs1/object/display/bsb10450157_00007.html

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  • Wow, thanks for tracking that down! An interesting piece of history right here. I always find these older texts difficult to read because of the elaborate fonts. – Nate Glenn Mar 26 at 21:51

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