Oxford: Excudebat Iosephus Barnesius, 1616. First Edition. Hardcover. Small quarto. Collation: [par.]4 2[par.]4 A-3K4 3L*4 3L-4L4 4M2 (lacking final blank leaf 4M2). Without a binder's blank at the front, and at the back a stub bearing traces of MS annotations; this was excised at the same time as the bespoke integral blank 4M2. Pagination: , 439, 444-452, , 453-645,  pp. Contemporary English ivory vellum, triple blind fillets around sides, smooth spine edges stained red. Blindstamps of the Theological Institute of Connecticut (now known as the Hartford Seminary). NB: In 1976 a collection of more than 200,000 books the Hartford Seminary Library were purchased by Emory University, including this one --> deaccessioned from Pitts Theology Library. Very good. Item #585
¶ First Complete Edition, and the first edition printed in England -- an excellent copy in contemporary English vellum. Scarce: our copy is apparently the only copy in the market.
¶ Nicholas Fuller (c.1557-1623), of Oxford, "the most admired critic of his time" (Athenae Oxonienses), was an English Hebraist and theologian whose skill in Semitic languages was recognized by his contemporaries including Buxtorf. Yet few of Fuller's works were published during his lifetime. His "Miscellaneorum theologicorum," a.k.a. "Miscellaneorum sacrorum libri," was reprinted several times, and contains a series of comments on difficult or controversial biblical texts. The present edition contains an entirely new book (Lib. IV) and Fuller's autobiographical preface, upon which the entry in the Athenae Oxonienses is based.
¶ Books 1-3 of the "Miscellaneorum" were first published at Heidelberg in 1612; for the present 1616 Oxford edition these were corrected by Fuller himself and printed under the author's own supervision by Joseph Barnes, the first printer of the Oxford University Press. Concerning Barnes, Madan writes: "In 1585 the University lent 100 Pounds Sterling to Joseph Barnes, bookseller of Oxford, with which to establish a press, and an ordinance of Star Chamber of the following year specially allowed one press and one apprentice at Oxford, besides a chief printer. It is know that Barnes lives first in a house in the High Street, and next at what is now St. Mary's entry, and there worked as sold Printer to the University until 1617, most of the products of his press being theological, whether sermons or treatise" (Madan, A Brief Account of the University Press at Oxford, p. 25). Barnes died in 1618, but "during his lifetime his shop seems to have been a convivial meeting place for college fellows and may have circulated London newspapers, making it a precursor of later coffee-shops" (Cambridge History of the Book in Britain vol. IV [1557-1695], p. 669). There can be no doubt that Fuller, having entrusted his MS with Barnes, was a regular!
¶ "Fuller's writings contain ample evidence of his expertise as a Semitic scholar. It is evident from the comments he makes in 'Miscellaneorum sacrorum libri' that he recognizes the importance of cognate languages such as Syriac, Arabic, and Aramaic for understanding the Hebrew Bible, and is clearly well versed in them. He also appreciates the comments of medieval rabbis for elucidating textual difficulties. While he draws much on the leading Christian transmitters of Hebrew learning such as Nicholas de Lyre, Pagninus, Muenster, Tremellius, and Fagius, he often records his debt to the principal Jewish exegetes and grammarians. He obviously had firsthand knowledge of what he calls the 'rabbinica expositio' of certain words. He cites Rashi frequently. He refers to David Kimchi as 'doctissimus Hebraeorum grammaticus' (Critici sacri, ix.2, 862) and quotes from his grammar and lexicon. He regards Ibn Ezra as a leading rabbinic authority and describes him as 'magni nominis rabbinus' (Critici sacri, ix.2, 892)" -- Oxford DNB.
¶ REFERENCES: Madan, Oxford Books, p. 105. STC (2nd ed.); 11461. ESTC S102752. Athenae Oxonienses II, 327.