Although John Bunyan’s Pilgrim emerged in Puritan dress from the Town Prison on Bedford Bridge in 1676, he has remained to this day, in more than 120 languages, an influence which is almost as wide as Christianity itself. Many explanations are offered for the book’s enduring appeal—the masterly allegory which can charm both child and adult; the great humanness of the characters who, after a few rapid strokes, appear in flesh and blood likeness; the plain, vivid English—and yet all these things are secondary.
Above all, Pilgrim’s Progress is a life story. It depicts the life which Bunyan himself lived and, at the same time, the life with which all Christians can substantially identify themselves. For, as Augustus M. Toplady wrote, the book describes ‘every stage of a Christian’s experience, from conversion to glorification.’ It does so with such abiding relevance because Bunyan’s world of thought is that of the Bible itself.
This re-typeset edition of Pilgrim’s Progress is based on the edition published by John C. Nimmo in 1895. It includes marginal notes and Scripture references, together with the fine etchings by William Strang.