Tzeror Hachaim. De Termino Vitae.

AUCTION 88 | Tuesday, March 17th, 2020 at 1:00pm
K2 Online Sale: Hebrew & Judaic Books and Manuscripts

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Lot 175

Tzeror Hachaim. De Termino Vitae.

pp. (16), 237,(50). Browned, ex-library, lower margin of opening title clipped. Contemporary vellum. 12mo. Coppenhagen, Menasseh 211; Silva Rosa 35.

Amsterdam: By the Author 1639

Est: $400 - $600
A discussion whether death is brought on by natural causes or divinely ordained. The Dutch intellectual Jan van Beverwyck had opened the discussion in his work Epistolica Quaestio de Vitae Termino, fatali an mobili (Dordrecht, 1634). Menasseh's response here, argues based on Jewish sources that the span of life is not predetermined by the Deity but depends upon constitutional, temperamental, and climatic influences. The work concludes with Carmen Intellectuale, a panegyric in honor of Menasseh by Jacob Rosales of Hamburg. “Of all Menasseh’s Latin works, this was the most successful.” Cecil Roth, A Life of Menasseh ben Israel (1945) p. 95. << * Bound with>>: Muller, Philip. Miracula, Chymica et Misteria Medica. Contains figures of retorts and other instruments likely to be found in a chemistry laboratory. Few pages have been expertly repaired. pp. (24), 189. (1611). The Gentile author Philip Muller would seem to have been influenced by the Kabbalah. Patai writes: “This reliance on the Kabbalah being the general trend of sixteenth- to eighteenth century alchemy, it was inevitable that Hebrew words should be found frequently in the texts, notably in those of Bang, Muller, Maulius, Sallwigt and Wienner” (see R. Patai, The Jewish Alchemists (1994) p. 158).