(BIBLE, Hebrew and Spanish). Biblia en dos Colunas - Hebrayco y Espanol

AUCTION 28 | Tuesday, April 05th, 2005 at 1:00
Fine Judaica: The Library of the late Professor Abraham J. Karp.

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Lot 12

(BIBLE, Hebrew and Spanish). Biblia en dos Colunas - Hebrayco y Espanol

Title in red and black, divisional titles Slightly stained in places. Contemporary elegantly tooled morocco with central cartouche on covers, six bands, lightly rubbed. Folio Darlow & Moule 5156

Amsterdam: The Sons of Solomon Proops 1762

Est: $5,000 - $6,000
FIRST EDITION OF THE BIBLE IN HEBREW AND SPANISH. Although the Bible had regularly appeared in the Spanish language ever since the appearance of the great Ferrara Bible of 1553, the present edition heralds the first appearance of both Hebrew and Spanish texts in a single volume. It was one Abraham Mendes Castro to whom the publishers in their preface give credit for promoting, and indeed financing the idea of a Spanish-Hebrew Bible. Castro, a resident of Curacao, Dutch West Indies, was motivated by local need “...there were not enough copies of the Pentateuch in Hebrew and in Spanish for the pupils [in Curacao].” Moreover, “Castro had a special fondness for the Holy Land and the diffusion of the Bible.” (See I.S. and S.A. Emmanuel, The History of the Jews of the Netherlands Antilles (1970) pp. 251 and 1095). In 1760, Castro sent funds to Amsterdam to have Proops print a two-column Spanish-Hebrew Bible, with the profits accrued from sale were to be divided between the Jewish Communities of Jerusalem and of Hebron. The ultimate result, according to Cardozo de Bethencourt, was a production valued as “...one of the most beautiful of Spanish Bibles.” (See AJHSP, Vol. XXIX Notes on Spanish and Portuguese Jews (1925) p.29). This, therefore, is the first Hebrew Book whose publication was financed by, and for the use of, Jews of the American Continent