784. [Latin - Nürnberg]
NICOLAUS DE LYRA, O.F.M.
4 vol., folio: [424, 338, 317 (of 318), 350 (of 352)] ff. (vol. I: title cut out and mounted, lacking 3 ff. replaced in matching facsimile printed on old paper (ff. Az1-3); vol. III: lacking final blank; vol. IV: lacking first & final blank; some light waterstaining or soiling, several single wormholes or sm. track partly with loss of letters, esp. in vol. I & II, some skilfull repairs).
Recased in (probably 16th-c.) blind-stamped half pigskin over wood (a few def. very skilfully rep., some sm. single wormholes), spine with 4 raised bands (sl. discol.), metal catches and clasps on leather tongues, edges bevelled inside, red edges, mod. endpapers. Good copy.
Incunable edition of the Latin Bible containing the Old and New Testament with the commentary of Nicolaus de Lyra. Contains, besides de Lyra's Postillae, also the Additiones of the Spanish bishop Paul of Burgos (1353-1435), followed by a reply on this Additiones, the Defensarium or Responsiones from the Franciscan Matthias Döring (1390-1469). Bible text printed in centre of pages with accompanying commentary of de Lyra around it. Illustrated with 44 woodcuts, some full-page. Capital spaces with guide letters. Many larger red and blue capital letters in vol. II-IV (1 gilt-heightened), and some in vol. I.
Nicolaus de Lyra (1270-1349), was a Franciscan teacher at the University of Paris. He was a very important biblical commentator known for his knowledge of Hebrew learning and the Latin (Church) Fathers. He gained his knowledge through studying the Hebrew language and other Jewish sources, among which the writings of Rabbi Solomon (1040-1105). He studied with the Jewish rabbis of Évreux (North France), one of the centres of Jewish learning during the Middle Ages. His knowledge was expressed in his massive "Postillae", in which he commented extensively on the entire Bible according to mostly literal senses. This commentary was printed for the first time in 1471/1472 which makes it the first printed commentary on the entire Bible. The commentary of De Lyra is considered to be a mark in the field of exegesis, not only for its completeness but also because of its use of Hebrew exegetical scholarship. It was used by generations of scholars, among whom John Wycliffe and Martin Luther. John Wycliffe acknowledged his indebtedness to de Lyra in his translation of the Bible from around 1388. Luther consulted and used the Postillae regularly throughout his career, especially for his translation of Genesis. He saw the work as a good exegetical and practical resource which provided a better understanding of the historical sense of the text. Luther wrote in his Table Talk "Lyra's Commentaries upon the Bible are worthy of all praise. I will order them diligently to read, for they are exceeding good, especially on the historical part of the Old Testament." As it has been said: "Si Lyra non lyrasset/ Lutherus non saltasset".
Ref. ISTC ib00618000. - GW 4293. - Goff B-618. - Polain 679. - BMC II:436. - CIBN B-433. - BSB-Ink B-469. - Bibles Paris 748.
Prov. Some old marg. annotations. - "Leonhardus Dorstadler", priest in the South Bavaria & Upper Austria region (d. after 1554), i.a. in Aigen am Inn, Obernberg am Inn, Wels, Ischl (ownership entry on title vol. I & II). - Ownership entry on title vol. III erased.
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