I posted on this last year but my recent foray into the Twilight Zone brought back suppressed memories of stories of chained Bibles. Remember those?
" The Catholic Church chained Bibles to the pulpit so the common folk couldn't read the simple gospel plan of salvation for themselves and get saved. The Church sought to keep them in bondage to the sacraments."
The story goes something like this, Dr. Luther was rummaging around the attic of his old seminary trying to come up with lyrics to his new hymn and discovered a dusty old book, blew the dust off its cover and said: "Holy Reformation Melancthon Man, I just discovered the Bible! And there ain't no chains on this baby!"
Not only did Catholics chain bibles up but so did Protestant libraries and churches. It was a way of keeping knowledge accessible to everyone, not just the rich or the thieves with chain cutters!
This practice died down in the 1700's after printing presses and paper manufacturing made the price of books less astronomical and less desirable to "sign-out" permanently.
Here's an interesting article from a librarian's point of view with no theological axe to grind on either side.
Also in Elizabethan England, the Geneva Bible as well as Foxe's Book of Martyrs (a polemic protestant work*) were chained by order of the government. I guess, the argument would now go something like this: "Well, they chained The Book of Martyrs down because Catholics didn't want anyone to find out how many people they were burning at the stake and would steal and destroy it, so the true believers had to keep them chained up."
* "The gross blunders due to carelessness have often been exposed, and there is no doubt that Foxe was only too ready to believe evil of the Catholics, and he cannot always be exonerated from the charge of wilful falsification of evidence." (From Ency. Brittanica.)