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Milhemet Hovah, Constantinople 1710

מלחמת חובה - First Edition - Kabbalah - Anti-Christian Polemics

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  • Lot Number 54431
  • Title (English) Milhemet Hovah
  • Title (Hebrew) מלחמת חובה
  • Note First Edition - Kabbalah - Anti-Christian Polemics
  • Author Various
  • City Constantinople
  • Publisher דפוס נפתלי הירץ בן עזריאל ויונה בן יעקב
  • Publication Date 1710
  • Estimated Price - Low 1,000
  • Estimated Price - High 2,000

  • Item # 2614033
  • End Date
  • Start Date

Physical Description

First edition, [6], 51, 53-69, 12 ff, octavo, 160:101 mm., wide margins, light age and damp staining, old hands of previous owners. A very good copy bound in the contemporary marbled paper over wood boards, rubbed.

Gershon Shalom describes the book as "Very rare". Includes the oft lacking final 12 ff. of ספר רעמים ורעשים.

The Isaac Berlin copy with inscription on title. R. Yitzhak (Isaac, also Ayzik) Berlin (1792 or 93-1865), noted bibliophile, rabbi and scholar from Hamburg, Germany. He is known for his edits and additions to R. Binyamin Ze'ev Wolff's Ashkenazi Mahzor and also published his own works.


Detail Description

The work includes several rare anti-Christian polemics and kabbalah works:

 ויכוח הרמב"ן - The Disputation of Barcelona (July 20–24, 1263) was a formal ordered medieval debate between representatives of Christianity and Judaism regarding whether or not Jesus was the Messiah. It was held at the royal palace of King James I of Aragon in the presence of the King, his court, and many prominent ecclesiastical dignitaries and knights, between Dominican Friar Pablo Christiani, a convert from Judaism to Christianity, and Nachmanides (Moshe Ben Nahman, Ramban), a leading medieval Jewish scholar, philosopher, physician, kabbalist, and biblical commentator.

ויכוח להרד"ק - R. David Kimhi (also Kimchi or Qimḥi) (1160–1235), also known by the Hebrew acronym as the RaDaK (רַדָּ״ק), medieval rabbi, biblical commentator, philosopher, and grammarian. His Responsa against Christians was banned by the Churchparticipated in public debates with Christians. According to Kimḥi, Christian interpretation demonstrated a corruption of the text and in some cases was inapplicable and irrational. He mostly attacks the allegorical method of interpretation and Christian claims towards the "true Israel" by stressing the superior morality and religiosity of the Jews.


ספר רעמים ורעשים - Book of Thunders and Earthquakes - First edition of this kabbalistic interpretation of thunders and earthquakes by R. Isaac Ben Solomon Luria Ashkenazi (1534–1572, ha-Ari).


סתירת אמונת הנוצרים מהר"ש בר צמח -  Anti-Christian polemic by R. Simeon ben Zemah Duran (Rashbatz, 1361–1444) was a rabbinic authority, philosopher, and scientist. He was born in Majorca to R. Zemah Astruc Duran. In his youth Simeon studied in Palma (Majorca) at the yeshivah of R. Ephraim Vidal, who was martyred in the year 1391, and in Aragon at that of R. Jonah Desmaestre , whose daughter he later married. A highly esteemed rabbinic scholar and even his teacher R. Ephraim Vidal sought his advice. His prestige there can be gauged from the fact that 44 years after he had left the island he addressed a letter to the Jews of the island reproaching them for negligence in some religious practices and admonishing them to change their way of life.  As judge, R. Simeon was regarded as an undisputed authority, and interesting facts have become known of his legal proceedings. From various communities, questions were sent to him about religious and legal matters. He had to deal with the problem of the Marranos from the religious and legal points of view. 


Hebrew Description


מלחמת חובה : אלכם אישים אקרא לכו לחמו במלחמתה של התורה / ... מעשהידי אמן משה ... וסמוך לו תכחת מגולה מאהבה ממהר"י קמחי ובנו ומהר"ש ברצמח ... ויען כי אדוננו הרמב"ן מלחמות ה' הוא נלחם קראתיו מלחמת חובה ...

כולל: הקדמה לספר סלע המחלקות; ויכוח הרמב"ן עם פראי פול לפני המלך; ויכוח להרד"ק; סתירת אמונת הנוצרים מהר"ש בר צמח

ספר רעמים ורעשים / שתקן ...כמוהר"ר יצחק אשכנזי

ג"ש: ההוצאה הראשונה. יקרת המציאות. מיוחס לאר"י


BE mem 1995; Vinograd, Constantinople 375; Yaari, Kushta 272