USQUE, SAMUEL. Consolacam as Tribulacoens de Israel

AUCTION 4 | Tuesday, March 03rd, 1998 at 1:00
Fine Judaica: Books, Manuscripts and Works of Art The Property of Various Owners

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Lot 211

USQUE, SAMUEL. Consolacam as Tribulacoens de Israel

Second edition. Lattice-work device on title ff.(1),270,(2). Stamp removed from title, lightly browned. Recent vellum, 8vo

Ferrara : Abraham Usque 1553 (i.e. Amsterdam, 1599?)

Est: $8,000 - $10,000
A fundamental medieval Jewish chronicle, one of the main source books of Jewish history and considered one of the great classics of Portuguese literature. The author, Samuel Usque, was a poet and historian, born in Portugal of a Marrano family, a man of great culture and thoroughly versed in both Jewish and Christian literature. “Written in limpid Portuguese prose, the Consolacam was dedicated to the great patroness of Jewish art and culture, Dona Gracia Nasi. Its avowed purpose was to persuade Marrano refugees from Spain and Portugal, and perhaps also Marranos who were still in those two countries, to return wholeheartedly to Judaism. To this end, the author, in a sweeping review of Jewish history, based upon traditional Jewish apologetics, demonstrated that the Jews, despite their centuries of hardship and persecution, had not been abandoned by God; they were rather, he declared, standing on the threshold of the golden messianic age.” EJ, XVI cols.21-2 The first edition of the Consolacam (Ferrara, 1553) was almost entirely destroyed by the Inquisition shortly after its publication. The second, exceptionally scarce edition (Amsterdam, 1599) marks the beginning of Sephardi literature in the Netherlands. The first and second editions of the Consolacam are almost identical but for differences in type. For an examination of issue points, see M.A. Cohen, Samuel Usque’s Consolation for the Tribulations of Israel (1964) pp.32 and 297-8