BABYLONIAN TALMUD, TRACTATE TA‘ANIT, PESARO: [GERSHOM] SONCINO, [CA. 1514]
40 folios (12 5/8 x 8 5/8 in.; 322 x 218 mm) (collation: i-vi6, vii4) on paper; modern foliation in pencil in Arabic numerals in lower margins; scattered marginalia and corrections in pen. Slight scattered staining; most leaves reinforced along gutter; many leaves remargined, usually without loss, except on f. 40, where a few words near the lower-outer corner are affected.
Modern half-vellum, slightly worn around edges; title, place, and date lettered on spine; modern paper flyleaves and pastedowns.
A rare copy of the second edition of this Talmudic treatise.
The renowned Gershom Soncino published numerous tractates of the Babylonian Talmud over the course of his storied, itinerant career. During his Pesaro period alone, he issued at least twenty treatises. These tractates, produced prior to Daniel Bomberg’s famous complete Talmud edition of 1519/1520-1523, constitute an admirable effort by a master printer to make some of the most popular Talmudic texts available to yeshiva students and scholars alike. The present lot is a rare copy of the second edition of Tractate Ta‘anit (first edition: Guadalajara, 1480) on the laws of public fast days. Whereas the standard versions of this work in use today have thirty-one folios, Soncino’s edition, accompanied by the commentary of the Franco-German Tosafist scholars and by that attributed to Rashi, comprises thirty-nine leaves, followed by a single folio of Piskei tosafot (legal rulings emerging from the Tosafist discussions). Although the treatise does not bear a date, its title page indicates that it was printed “in the state of Italy, in the city of Pesaro, the seat of Duke Francesco Maria della Rovere,” who ruled Pesaro beginning in 1513.
A.M. Habermann, Ha-madpisim benei soncino: toledoteihem u-reshimat ha-sefarim ha-ivrim she-nidpesu al yedeihem (Vienna: David Fraenkel, 1933), 54 (no. 54).
Marvin J. Heller, The Sixteenth Century Hebrew Book: An Abridged Thesaurus, vol. 1 (Leiden; Boston: Brill, 2004), 82-85.
Vinograd, Pesaro 41
Isaac Yudlov and G.J. Ormann, Sefer ginzei yisra’el: sefarim, hoverot, va-alonim me-osef dr. yisra’el mehlman, asher be-beit ha-sefarim ha-le’ummi ve-ha-universita’i (Jerusalem: JNUL, 1984), 41-42 (no. 142b).