AUCTION 50 | Thursday, February 24th, 2011 at 1:00
Fine Judaica: Hebrew Printed Books, Manuscripts, Graphic & Ceremonial Art Including: The Alfonso Cassuto Collection of Iberian Art

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Lot 53


Edited by Jacob b. Chaim of Tunis. With Targum Onkeles and commentary by Rashi, ibn Ezra, Kimchi, Targum, etc. Four volumes each with title within architectural arch, initial letters within elaborate woodcut border. Hebrew marginalia in various early hands (primarily in Vol. I). A FINE CRISP COPY. Complete. Vol. I: ff. 234 (four early leaves misbound). * Vol. II: ff. 209; Vol. III: 211. * Vol. IV: 297. Trace stained in few places, Vol. I. with censors signatures at end, lower margin of f. 35 repaired affecting few words. Contemporary uniform blind-tooled vellum over thick wooden boards, corner bosses, clasps, lacking hinges, variously rubbed, few minute pin-prick worm-holes on upper covers. Folio Vinograd, Venice 99; Habermann, Bomberg 93; Darlow & Moule 5085; not in Adams

Venice: Daniel Bomberg 1524-5

Est: $50,000 - $70,000
The Second Biblia Rabbinica. An exceptional, bright copy in a uniform contemporary vellum binding. The first Rabbinic Bible to present the Massorah. The text of this edition became the standard Massoretic text for all subsequent editions. See D.S. Berkowitz, In Remembrance of Creation (1968) no. 166. The first Biblia Rabbinica, printed by Bomberg in 1516-7 was edited by the apostate Jew Felix Pratensis and contained the Imprimatur of the Pope. Bomberg quickly realized that these two facts marginalized the Great Bible from the Jewish market. Bomberg therefore employed Jacob b. Chaim ibn Adonijah, newly arrived in Venice (after being driven out of Spain and then Tunis), as editor of the Second Biblia Rabbinica. A meticulous, and most knowledgeable Jewish editor, Joseph b. Chaim went to great pains to secure as many codices with a masorah as possible. For the first time, there was issued a printed Hebrew Bible with a marginal masorah, which, as hoped by Bomberg, was received with acclaim by the Jewish market. THUS, THIS BIBLE MAY BE SAID TO BE THE FIRST “JEWISH” RABBINIC BIBLE.