On the forty-second page of “The Bible: A Very Short Introduction” (#14 in the Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press) University of Glasgow professor John K. Riches wrote (emphasis added):
twist to the story, from the 1820s onward it became a widespread practice among (Protestant) Bible societies to print Bibles without the Apocrypha at all. More recent ecumenical editions of the Bible, like the Common Bible, have restored the Apocrypha or deutero-canonical books.
The Christian New Testament
The process of the formation of the Christian canon of the New Testament (that is, of writings which have a specifically Christian origin) is not all that dissimilar from that by which the Hebrew scriptures came to be canonized.
In the early days of Christianity, there were of course no scriptures written by Christians. 'Scripture' for the early Christians was what they would subsequently come to call the scriptures of the Old Testament. Nor is it likely that the first Christian writings were composed as scripture. Once, however, Christian writings began to be seen as scripture themselves, there was a need to distinguish them from the older writings. The terms 'old testament' and 'new testament' come into currency at the end of the second century. Originally they referred respectively to the covenants which God had made with the people of Israel through Moses and with the church through Jesus. The sense was that these were books beloging to the old or new covenant, not that the books themselves were the covenants. Later of course the terms came to refer to the books themselves, as on the title page of the King James Bible: 'The Holy Bible conteyning the Old Testament, and the New' (see Fig. 3).
How did the Christian writings of the founding figures come to be recognized as authoritative for the church? The purposes of the books are varied: Paul's letters were occasional communications to churches around the Mediterranean (or exceptionally to an individual, Philemon), addressing specific matters of belief and practice. They