Barlow, Thomas. Several Miscellaneous and Weighty Cases of Conscience

AUCTION 32 | Thursday, March 23rd, 2006 at 1:00
Fine Judaica: Printed Books, Autographed Letters, Manuscripts, Graphics and Ceremonial Art

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Lot 31

Barlow, Thomas. Several Miscellaneous and Weighty Cases of Conscience

Frontispiece portrait of the Author 6p.l., 3-93 [1]p., 1l., 1-14p., 1l., 1-40p., 1l., 1-134p., 1l., 3-78p., 2l., 3-46p., 1l. front. (port.) Heavily browned. Contemporary panelled calf, rebacked. 8vo Roth B1-36

London: “Printed, and sold by Mrs. Davis” 1692

Est: $2,000 - $2,500
In 1654, Manasseh ben Israel petitioned England for the readmission of the Jews after their banishment in 1290. In September of 1655, after printing his “Humble Address” to Oliver Cromwell, a national conference was summoned to debate the issue. Thomas Barlow, Bishop of Lincoln, known for his amenability to the various governments of seventeenth century England, wrote "For Toleration of the Jews" sometime around 1655, although it was not published until much later. In the present compendium, Barlow looked favorably upon the issue of Jewish re-admission, one of his "weighty cases of conscience." Cromwell favored readmitting the Jews, among other reasons, so that they might transfer their trade interests from Holland to England. Indeed the arguments Barlow presents here mostly focuses upon the likely usefulness of the Jews to the State. Cromwell indeed gave informal permission to the Jews to reside and trade in England on condition they did not obtrude their worship upon the public. Although full emancipation of the Jews did not occur until the 1840's (and was certainly perceived by 17th century Jewry as unattainable), re-admission was the first and most important step