Humas, Imanuel Benveniste, Amsterdam 1643 (45896)

Marranos - Bible - Spanish

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Listing Details

Lot Number: 45896
Title (English): Humas
Note: Marranos - Bible - Spanish
City: Amsterdam
Publisher: Imanuel Benveniste
Publication Date: 1643
Estimated Price: $2,000.00 USD - $5,000.00 USD
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Description

Physical Description

[1], 175, 167-174, [2], 184-129 [i.e. 192], 203-249, [1, 1 blank, 2]; 82 ff, octavo., 160:100 mm., final f. in facimile, initial 8 and final 12 ff. backed. A very rare book bound in contemporary gilt calf, modern spine.

 

Detail Description

Pentateuch with Haftorot in Spanish for use of the large Marrano population in Holland. Marranos in Amsterdam differed from those in other Protestant countries in that they openly practiced Judaism almost from the moment of their arrival. Thanks to the Marranos, Amsterdam became one of the greatest Jewish centers in the world in the 17th century; it had some of the finest academies and produced some of the greatest Jewish thinkers.

Immanuel Benveniste (17th century), Hebrew printer in Amsterdam. Benveniste's name appears in an entry in the Puiboken of that city, dated Feb. 10, 1640: "Immanuel Benveniste of Venice, 32 years old, parents still living..." Among the 65 works he printed between 1640 and 1670 are Midrash Rabbah (1641–42), Mishnah (1643), and Alfasi's Halakhot (1643). His outstanding production, however, was the Talmud (1644–48), which restored some passages expunged by the censor in previous editions.

Hebrew typography and publishing in Amsterdam, until the beginning of the nineteenth century, was not equaled by any other city. So highly esteemed was the Amsterdam imprint that even foreign reprints claimed the credit of being printed "with Amsterdam type." How far-reaching the Amsterdam book-trade was may be seen from a document, dated February 7, 1685, found in the city archives of Breslau (Brann, in "Monatsschrift," 1896, p. 476), which advised against the establishment of a Hebrew press in Silesia, "because there are three very large Jewish printing establishments at Amsterdam in Holland, whence books are sent by sea to Danzig and Memel, thus abundantly providing for the Jews of Poland and Lithuania." Besides the printing-house of Manasseh ben Israel, there were those of David Tartas, Imanuel Benveniste, and Joseph and Imanuel Athias.

Marranos were Jews living in Iberia who were forced to convert to Christianity during the Middle Ages yet continued to practice Judaism in secret. "Marrano" is now often considered offensive and "crypto-Jew" is preferred in scholarly works. Marranos did not arrive in Amsterdam until around 1590, some 11 years after the Union of Utrecht (1579) and the birth of the United Provinces of the Netherlands as a Protestant state. They had to wait until 1615 before Jewish settlement was officially authorized, but the Marranos in Amsterdam differed from those in other Protestant countries in that they openly practiced Judaism almost from the moment of their arrival. Thanks to the Marranos, Amsterdam became one of the greatest Jewish centers in the world in the 17th century; it had some of the finest academies and produced some of the greatest Jewish thinkers.

 

Hebrew Description

     

References

Kayserling p. 29; JE; EJ