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Detailed record for Harley 7586A

Author Maimonides (the Rambam), Samuel ibn Tibbon
Title Guide of the Perplexed (Moreh Nevukhim) by Maimonides in Samuel ibn Tibbon's translation (ff. 3-169v); Perush ha-milot ha-zarot (A glossary of foreign terms) by Samuel ibn Tibbon (ff. 171-188v)
Origin Italy, C. ( Rome?)
Date 1283
Language Hebrew
Script Italian square script, unpunctuated
Scribe Abraham ben Yom Tov ha-Cohen
Decoration 1 decorated letter, in colours (f. 2). 4 arcades framing text, in colours (ff. 3, 63, 110, 171). Panels decorated with foliate motifs and inhabited by birds, animals and hybrids around the initial words, in colours and gold (ff. 5, 5v, 7v). Numerous pen-flourishing sometimes inhabited by hybrids accompanying headings, in red and blue ink.
Dimensions in mm 305 x 220 (210 x 145)
Official foliation ff. 188 (+ 1 unfoliated modern flyleaf at the beginning and 1 older and 1 modern unfoliated paper flyleaves at the end), f. 1 is a paper flyleaf
Collation 20 quires: i-vi10 (ff. 2-61), vii10-1 (ff. 62-70), viii-xvi10 (ff. 71-160), xvii10 (ff. 161-169 and 171; f. 170 is a later insertion), xviii6 (ff. 172-177), xixthree (ff. 178-180), xx8 (ff. 181-188). No catchwords.
Form Parchment codex
Binding Post-1600. 'Harleian' binding.
Provenance Shabbetai ben Mattatya of Rome and Solomon ben Shabbetai, his son: inscribed with their name as the patrons in the colophon, 5044 [1283] (f. 169v).
Joab ben Solomon: mentioned in an acquisition note, 1340 (f. 2).
Menahem ben Joab ben Solomon: sold to R. Mattatya ben Shabbetai ben Solomon for 50 golden florins: inscribed with their names in a purchase note, 1378 (f. 2).
Jehiel ben Joab of Montalcino: sold to Israel ben Isaac of Pisa for 100 florins: inscribed with their names in a purchase note, 1461 (f. 2).
Illegible inscription in Latin characters (f. 3).
Edward Harley: 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, f. [189] of a tree-storey hill with a cross on top with a date 1722 beneath, unidentified.
f. 134 is a later restoration, f. 170 is a smaller piece of parchment inserted later.
There is a reference to the same transaction between Jehiel ben Jacob and Israel ben Isaac in Add. 19945 as well (see Provenance).
Select bibliography A Catalogue of the Harleian Manuscripts in the British Museum, 4 vols (London: Eyre and Strahan, 1808-12), III (1808), no. 7586 A.

Aaron Freimann, 'Jewish Scribes in Medieval Italy', in Alexander Marx Jubilee Volume (New York: Jewish Theological Seminary of America, 1950), pp. 231-342 (no. 14a).

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), III, no. 906.

Malachi Beit-Arie, 'The Cryptic Name of the Scribe Abraham b. Yom Tov ha-Cohen', Israel Oriental Studies, 2 (1972), 51-56 (p. 52).

Bezalel Narkiss, 'Three Jewish Art Patrons in Mediaeval Italy', in Festschrift Reuben R. Hecht (Koren Publishers Jerusalem Ltd., 1984), pp. 296-307 (pp. 298-99).

Mendel Metzger, 'Two Centuries (13th-14th) of Hebrew Manuscript Ilumination in Italy', in Die Juden in ihrer Mittelalterlichen Umwelt eds. by Alfred Ebenbauer and Klaus Zatloukal (Vienna: Böhnlau Verlag, 1991), pp. 131-50 (p. 138).

Malachi Beit-Arie, The Panizzi Lectures: Hebrew Manuscripts of East and West. Towards a Comparative Codicology (London: The British Library, 1992), pp. 63, 69.

Ilana Tahan, Hebrew Manuscripts: The Power of Script and Image (London, British Library, 2007), p. 125.


Images
* * *
 
Decorated letter

f. 2
Decorated letter
Decorated letter

f. 2
Decorated letter
Inhabited panel

f. 5
Inhabited panel
 
Inhabited panel

f. 5v
Inhabited panel
Inhabited panel

f. 7v
Inhabited panel
Penwork embellishments

ff. 26v-27
Penwork embellishments
 
Penwork embellishments

f. 27
Penwork embellishments
Arcade

f. 63
Arcade
Arcade

f. 63
Arcade
 
Arcade

f. 110
Arcade
Penwork embellishments

f. 178
Penwork embellishments

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