Baba Kamma Mi-Masekhet Nezikin/De Legibus Ebraeorum Forensibus
by L'Empereur, Constantijn, Translator and Editor
1637. An Important Seventeenth-Century Scholar on the Jewish Law of Torts and Damages L'Empereur, Constantijn [1591-1648], Translator and Editor. Baba Kamma Mi-Masekhet Nezikin/De Legibus Ebraeorum Forensibus Liber Singularis. Ex Ebraeorum Pandectis Versus & Commentariis Illustratus. Leiden: Ex Officina Elzeviriorum, 1637. (Hebrew Title Romanized.) [xlviii], 306,  pp. Parallel Hebrew and Latin texts, commentary in Latin. Quarto (7-3/4" x 6"). Contemporary calf, gilt rules to boards, gilt spine with raised bands. Light rubbing to boards, moderate rubbing to extremities, some wear to spin ends, joints starting, corners bumped and somewhat worn, crack in text block between front free endpaper and title page, later armorial owner bookplate to front pastedown. Large Elzevier Solitary-Man device to title page. Some toning to text, annotation dated 1693 in miniscule hand near foot of title page. * Only edition. The holder of doctoral degrees in theology and law, L'Empereur was a prominent Dutch Hebraist and Orientalist. Also active as a lawyer, he was professor of theology and Hebrew at the University Harderwijk, later professor of Hebrew at the University of Leiden. His multi-faceted background is reflected in his heavily annotated translation of the Bava Kamma, a section of the Talmud dealing with torts and damages. Divided into ten chapters, it discusses damages caused without criminality, damages caused by a criminal act and compensation for damages. Thomas Jefferson owned a copy of this book. It is now part of the Jefferson collection at the Library of Congress. OCLC locates 20 copies in North America, 1 in a law library (UC-Berkeley). Sowerby, Catalogue of the Library of Thomas Jefferson 2462. Willems, Les Elzevier: Histoire et Annales Typographiques 459. (Inventory #: 65984)
Law & Legal History, International Law, Trials, Americana, Criminology, Early Printed Law Books, Legal Ephemera, Manuscripts: Law, Political Science
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