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Bidding Information
Lot #    6502
Auction End Date    1/13/2004 3:36:00 PM (mm/dd/yyyy)
Title Information
Title (English)    Kinat Soferim; Hok le-Yisrael
Title (Hebrew)    קנאת סופרים - חק לישראל
Author    R. Hananiah ben Menahem Cases (Cazes)
City    Leghorn
Publisher    Clemente Ricci and Abraham Meldola
Publication Date    1740
Collection Information
Independent Item    This listing is an independent item not part of any collection
Description Information
   First edition. [4], 39, [1]; 23 ff., 210:160 mm., wide margins, damp stained, light age staining, few minor wormholes. A good copy bound in contemporary half leather and marbled paper boards, rubbed.
   Two works by R. Hananiah ben Menahem Cases (Cazes). Both Kinat Soferim and Hok le-Yisrael are responses to criticism of the works of earlier leading Jewish halakhists. Kinat Soferim, a defense of Rambam’s Sefer ha-Mitzvot from the criticism of the Ramban, as expressed in his Hassagot ha-Rambam, is meant to communicate the importance of the words of the great eagle, Maimonides, in his Sefer ha-Mitzvot “and like a hammer that breaks the rock into pieces” (Jeremiah 23:29), that is, the rock of dispute, “that you might answer the words of truth to those who send” (Proverbs 22:21) hand upon it with criticism, of the voice made beautiful by his pen. The phrase kinat soferim appears in the Talmud in the statement, “jealousy between sages kinat soferim increases wisdom” (Bava Batra 21a, 22a). There are approbations and an introduction from R. Case, who gives several reasons for entitling the work Kinat Soferim. A feature of Kinat Soferim is the use of large attractive woodcut front and tail-pieces.

Hok le-Yisrael is a defense of R. Joseph Karo’s Shulhan Arukh from the Peri Megadim of R. Hezekiah Ben David Da Silva (1659–1695). The title pages inform that both books were brought to press by the author’s son, Menahem Cases, and that they were printed, as were all the books published by the Meldola press, CON LICENZA DE’ SUPERIORI, that is, with the permission of the censor. The quires of Kinat Soferim and Hok le-Yisrael have separate enumerations, so that although generally bound and recorded together, it is possible they were printed separately, reflecting the fact that books were more often than not still sold disbound to be bound by the purchaser.

R. Cases was from a distinguished family with roots in Mantua. Hananiah wrote responsa, included in the responsa of his contemporaries, and an epistle to R. Nehemiah ben Baruch concerning musical harmony in the recitation of the priestly benediction (Birkat Kohanim), included in R. Nehemiah's Meliz u-Meliz (Venice, 1715). His most important works, however, are Kinat Soferim and Hok le-Yisrael.

Paragraph 2    ... להודיע... אמרי יושר... הרמב"ם... בספר המצות שלו... להשיב... לשולחים יד עליו בהשגותיהם... (אשר) עשה... ר' חנניה קזיס בכמוהר"ר מנחם זלה"ה. הובא לבית הדפוס ע"י... בן... המחבר... ר' מנחם קזיס (המגיה... יצחק בכה"ר משה די פאס ז"ל)...

חק לישראל אשר פעל ועשה... ר' חנניא בכמוהר"ר מנחם זלה"ה... אשר השיג על בעל פרי חדש (ר' חזקיה סילוה... י"ד [יורה דעה, אמשטרדם תנ"ב]) ז"ל. העלה אותו על מזבח הדפוס... בן... המחבר כה"ר מנחם קזיס (המגיה... יצחק די משה די פאס ז"ל)... הסכמות: רבני ליוורנו: ר' אליעזר הכהן, ר' יעקב לוסינה ור' מלאכי ב"ר יעקב הכהן, י תמוז תצ"ט; ר' יהודה רפאל יהושע ב"ר פינחס ברוך ממונציליסי, פירינצי, תמוז תצ"ט.

   JE; Vinograd, Livorno 24, 27; CD-EPI 0161321; 0161319
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Listing Classification
18th Century:    Checked
Italy:    Checked
Polemics:    Checked
First Editions:    Checked
Language:    Hebrew
Manuscript Type
Kind of Judaica