Ferrara Bible

Ferrara Bible

The Ferrara Bible was a 1553 publication of the Ladino version of the Tanach used by Sephardi Jews. It was paid for and made by Yom-Tob ben Levi Athias (the Spanish Marrano "Jerónimo de Vargas", as typographer) and Abraham ben Salomon Usque (the Portuguese Jew "Duarte Pinhel", as translator), and was dedicated to Ercole II d'Este, Duke of Ferrara. Ercole's wife Renée of France was a Protestant, daughter of Louis XII of France.

This version is a revision of a translation which had long circulated among Spanish Jews. It is more formally entitled "Biblia en Lengua Española Traducida Palabra por Palabra de la Verdad Hebrayca por Muy Excelentes Letrados, Vista y Examinada por el Oficio de la Inquisicion. Con Privilegio del Ylustrissimo Señor Duque de Ferrara." ("The Bible in the Spanish Language, Translated word for word from the true Hebrew by very excellent Literati, Viewed and Examined by the Office of the Inquisition [though the Inquisition would not have passed such a work] . With the Privilege of the most Illustrious Lord Duke of Ferrara.)

Two editions were printed, one dedicated to the duke, and one for the Jewish public dedicated to Doña Gracia Nasi.


Its language follows closely the Hebrew syntax rather than that of everyday Judaeo-Spanish.It is written in the Latin alphabet.

The tetragrammaton is translated as "A." (for Adonai).

It was a basis for the 1569 translation of Casiodoro de Reina.

ee also

*Spanish translations of the Bible


* [http://www.proel.org/traductores/duarte.html Vargas-Pinel] , article in Spanish with samples.
* [http://www.ladinobooks.com/catalog.html Modern reprints]

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