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Detailed record for Harley 1528

Title Bible with masorah magna and parva (the 'Harley Catalan Bible')
Origin Spain, N. E. (Catalonia)
Date 2nd or 3rd quarter of the 14th century
Language Hebrew, Aramaic
Script Punctuated Sephardi square script, unpunctuated Ashkenazi square script (ff. 5-6)
Decoration Full page miniatures in colours and gold of Temple implements (ff. 7v-8). 12 full-page arcades in colours (ff. 1v-4v, 7, 8v-10). Masorah in micrographic design.
Dimensions in mm 350 x 270 (240 x 185) in three columns
Official foliation ff. 424 (+ 2 unfoliated older paper flyleaves at the beginning and at the end)
Collation 57 quires: ifour (ff. 1-4), ii2 (ff. 5-6), iiifour (ff. 7-10), iv-lv8 (ff. 11-418), lvifour (ff. 419-422),lviitwo (ff. 423-424). Instead of catchwords, there is a quire numbering in Hebrew characters.
Form Parchment codex
Binding Post-1600. Brown leather binding with the initials 'MB' (presumably Margaret Bentinck).
Provenance David Finzi ben Menahem Finzi (or Panzi?), owner: inscribed with his name (f. 424).
Eliyakim ben Hosea Finzi (or Panzi?): sold it to Jacob ben Abraham of Sforno on Tuesday 29 April 5271 (1511) (f. 11).
Illegible inscription in Latin characters (f. 374).
Jacob Geraldino, censor: inscribed with his name, 12 December 1555 (f. 422v); William Popper, The Censorship of Hebrew Books (New York: KTAV Publishing House, 1969), p. 104, and appendix § 24-31 and 98.
Luigi da Bologna, a converted Jew working for the Inquisition as censor (active at the end of the sixteenth, beginning of seventeenth century): inscribed with his name as censor: 'Visto per mi Fra Luigi da Bologna del 1602 in Reggio' (f. 422v); William Popper, The Censorship of Hebrew Books (New York: KTAV Publishing House, 1969), p. 104, and appendix § 112-117.
The Harley Collection, formed by Robert Harley (b. 1661, d. 1724), 1st earl of Oxford and Mortimer, politician, and Edward Harley (b. 1689, d. 1741), 2nd earl of Oxford and Mortimer, book collector and patron of the arts.
Edward Harley bequeathed the library to his widow, Henrietta Cavendish, née Holles (b. 1694, d. 1755) during her lifetime and thereafter to their daughter, Margaret Cavendish Bentinck (b. 1715, d.1785), duchess of Portland; the manuscripts were sold by the Countess and the Duchess in 1753 to the nation for £10,000 (a fraction of their contemporary value) under the Act of Parliament that also established the British Museum; the Harley manuscripts form one of the foundation collections of the British Library.
Notes Watermark, of a lamb holding a cross (f. [ii]) and initials of JW (f. [425]), of James Whatman II, paper maker (1764-1793). Gilt edges.
Foliation is written on the verso side of the leaves. Hebrew foliation from f. 11. Hair side and flesh side are distinguishable. Ruling is sometimes visible.
Select bibliography George Margoliouth, Catalogue of the Hebrew and Samaritan Manuscripts in the British Museum, 4 vols (London: British Museum, 1899-1935; vols I-III repr. 1965); IV, Introduction, Indexes, ed. by Jacob Leveen (London: British Museum, 1977), I, no. 57.

Helen Rosenau, Vision of the Temple: The Image of the Temple of Jerusalem in Judaism and Christianity (London: Oreska Books, 1979), figs 36, 37.

Bezalel Narkiss, Hebrew Illuminated Manuscripts in the British Isles: a Catalogue Raisonne´. The Spanish and Portuguese Manuscripts, 2 vols (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1982), I, no. 20; II, figs 324-27.

The´re`se and Mendel Metzger, Jewish Life in the Middle Ages: Illuminated Hebrew Manuscripts of the Thirteenth to the Sixteenth Centuries (New York: Alpine Fine Arts Collection, 1982), p. 304.

Katrin Kogman-Appel, Jewish Book Art Between Islam and Christianity: the Decoration of Hebrew Bibles in Medieval Spain (Lieden: Brill, 2004), pp. 144-69.

Ilana Tahan, Hebrew Manuscripts: The Power of Script and Image (London, British Library, 2007), pp. 54-55.

* * *

ff. 1v-2

f. 1v

f. 2
Temple implements

ff. 7v-8
Temple implements

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