Venice: Daniel Bomberg, 1523
Wing ZP 535 .B633
Gift of the McCormick Theological Seminary. Catalogued and Conserved by a grant from the B. H. Breslauer Foundation.
Abraham Balmes (ca. 1440-1553) was a celebrated translator into Latin of Arabic scientific and philosophical works that had been transmitted to Western Europe only in Hebrew versions. An important figure of the Hebrew Renaissance (the subject of a major Newberry exhibition in 1997), Balmes addressed this grammar to a gentile readership, and it subsequently exercised great influence on Christian Hebraists. Daniel Bomberg, the German gentile, who printed this volume, published the first edition of the Talmud and also in 1523 a concordance to the Hebrew Bible, the first Biblical concordance in any language to refer to numbered chapter and verse. In this diglot grammar each Hebrew phrase and its Latin translation were numbered to create a format that anticipates Robert Estienne’s numbering of Biblical verses in the mid-sixteenth century. Formerly in the library of Lane Theological Seminary.