De Bello Judaico. [And] De Antiquitate Judaeorum Contra Apionem
Verona, Petrus Maufer, 1480.
Folio, (283x199mm), 211 of 214 original leaves. 36 lines. Rubricated
capitals. Bound in a parchment sheet from a manuscript missal.
Collation: New front endpaper, 2 blank leaves (supplied, laid paper,
separate watermark from text pages), 2 facsimile "preliminary" text pages
(often cited as lacking) and facsimile blank tipped in, a9 (a1-a9) b8 c6
d8-x8 y6, A8-C8 D6, blank, new rear endpaper.
Occasional marginalia. Ex libris notation on the penultimate page dated
1575. Occasional minor staining to pages. Very good condition. Goff J-484,
BMC VII p. 951.
De Bello Judaico or The Jewish War was originally composed in
Aramaic and Greek. This fourth edition was translated into Latin by
Rufus of Aquileia. It is the first to be printed in roman letter and
the first to be printed in Italy.
The Jewish War tells the history of the Jewish people from the time of the
Maccabbees to the insurrections against the Romans ending in 73 CE. The
work was written during the reign of Vespasian whose army defeated
Josephus at Jotapata in 67 and imprisoned him in Alexandria. Josephus soon
found favor with the Roman emperor and accompanied Vespasian's son Titus
to Palestine where he took part in the seige of Jerusalem in the year 70.
Five of the seven books in The Jewish War recount the insurrections.
Josephus was made a Roman citizen and rewarded with land in Judea, but
lived in Rome, devoting himself to writing and the service of the Flavian
The appended De Antiquitate Judaeorum Contra Apionem is a "systematic
apology for Judaism in replay to various attacks" (Schaef-Herzog),
probably written later than 93 CE. Jamie McNulty, Powells.com