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First Printed Mishnah, 1492

First_Printed_Mishnah

First Printed Mishnah

Mishnah, Naples, Italy, 1492. Kilayim

This page is from the tractate Kilayim (which translates as ‘of two kinds’) which deals with the laws regarding forbidden mixtures of species in agriculture, breeding and clothing. It forms part of Zera’im (Seeds), one of the six divisions or orders of the Mishnah. Added to the text is Moses Maimonides’s commentary translated from the original Arabic.

The diagrams show ways of dividing up plots of land to grow permitted types of seeds and mixed species.

This book itself was printed in Naples in 1492 by Joshua Solomon Soncino, and was the first to contain the complete text of the Mishnah.

The Soncino family, named after the Italian town in which they were active, ran a dynamic international publishing house for religious literature. Through the 15th and 16th centuries they ran presses from Italy to Egypt and Turkey. Joshua Solomon Soncino (d.1493) was the publisher of their first book in 1484; his family continued to run the company, branching out into volumes in Greek, Latin and Italian.

British Library- 15th-century Mishnah

See also-

Tannaitic Literature (circa 70-3rd century CE)

Posted in: Early Arab Period

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