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Christian Hebraism in Twelfth-Century Rome: A Philologist's Correction of the Latin Bible through Dialogue with Jewish Scholars and their Hebrew Texts

  • Marie Thérèse Champagne (a1)


In mid-twelfth-century Rome, one clerical scholar, Nicolaus Maniacutius, honed his philological skills as he endeavoured to return the text of the Psalter to the original. Maniacutius met the challenge of editing Scripture in an unusual manner as a Christian Hebraist, consulting with Jewish scholars to compare the Vulgate Book of Psalms with the Jews’ Hebrew text. In doing so, he followed the example set by his scholarly predecessor, St Jerome, centuries earlier, as well as his contemporary, Hugh of St Victor. While scholars have acknowledged that Maniacutius consulted with Jews and learned Hebrew, the identity of the one or more Jewish scholar(s) remains obscure. The Sephardic scholar Abraham ibn Ezra lived in Rome c.1140–1143, and while there wrote a commentary on the Psalms. Nicolaus also revised the Psalter and wrote of a ‘learned Spanish Jew’. This article explores the phenomenon of Christian Hebraism in mid-twelfth-century Rome through the life and work of Maniacutius, and presents evidence that supports Cornelia Linde's suggestion that Abraham ibn Ezra was the ‘learned Spanish Jew’ with whom Maniacutius worked. In addition, textual evidence supports Maniacutius's work within an informal, cross-confessional discourse community of Jewish and Christian scholars.


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*Department of History, University of West Florida, 11000 University Parkway, Pensacola, FL 32514, USA. E-mail:


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I wish to thank Michael Aaron Champagne and Steve Schoenig for their generous assistance with Latin translations.



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1 ‘Hebraeus quidam Hispanus diversarum linguarum litteris eruditus’: CChr.CM 262, 141; Linde's introduction to this volume, which is entitled Nicolai Maniacoria: Suffraganeus bibliothece, was extremely helpful to this study, and I am grateful for her generous communications with me. See also Linde, Cornelia, ‘Basic Instruction and Hebrew Learning: Nicolaus Maniacoria's Suffraganeus bibliothece’, RTAM 80 (2013), 116, at 11–12; eadem, ‘Some Observations on Nicola Maniacutia's Suffraganeus Bibliothece’, in Dolezalova, Lucie and Visi, Tamas, eds, Retelling the Bible: Literary, Historical, and Social Contexts (Frankfurt am Main, 2011), 159–68; eadem, How to Correct the Sacra Scriptura? Textual Criticism of the Latin Bible between the Twelfth and Fifteenth Century, Medium Ævum Monographs 29 (Oxford, 2012). Signer, Michael, in ‘Polemic and Exegesis: the Varieties of Twelfth-Century Hebraism’, in Coudert, Allison P. and Shoulson, Jeffrey S., eds, Hebraica Veritas? Christian Hebraists and the Study of Judaism in Early Modern Europe (Philadelphia, PA, 2004), 2132, at 24, also notes that Maniacutius had mentioned a ‘Spanish Jew’ in his Libellus de corruptione et de correptione psalmorum et aliarum quarundam scripturarum, the text of which is found in only one codex: Montpellier, Bibliothèque de l'École de Médecine, MS H294, fols 144r–159v; Peri, Vittorio published a transcription in ‘Correctores immo corruptores. Un saggio di critica testuale nella Roma del XII secolo’, Italia medioevale e umanistica 20 (1977), 19125, at 88–125.

2 Over the centuries, his surname has been recorded in at least twenty-eight different spellings. In this article, Maniacoria and Maniacutius denote the same individual.

3 The sequence in which Maniacutius moved between these three roles is not certain. Most scholars have claimed that Maniacutius had joined the Cistercians by early 1145; however, I firmly support a position first proposed by Linde, that he probably joined that order in his later years (c.1160s), after having served as a deacon and then as an Augustinian canon regular. For a thorough discussion of the problems inherent in determining Maniacutius's chronology, see CChr.CM 262, vii–xv.

4 Maniacutius's works have been extensively studied from Heinrich Denifle in the late nineteenth century onwards. For a recent study, see Guglielmetti, Rossana, ‘Nicola Maniacutia, “Corruzione e correzione dei testi”’, Ecdotica 5 (2008), 267–98.

5 CChr.CM 262, xxxiv; Linde, ‘Basic Instruction’, 10–12; see also Sela, Shlomo, Abraham Ibn Ezra and the Rise of Medieval Hebrew Science (Leiden, 2003), 10; Signer, Michael, ‘Rabbi and Magister: Overlapping Intellectual Models of the Twelfth-Century Renaissance’, Jewish History 22 (2008), 115–37, at 127.

6 Charlap, Luba R., ‘Abraham Ibn Ezra's Viewpoint regarding the Hebrew Language and the Biblical Text in the Context of the Medieval Environment’, Folia linguistica historica 26 (2006–7), 111, at 1.

7 Sela, Shlomo and Freudenthal, Gad, ‘Abraham Ibn Ezra's Scholarly Writings: A Chronological Listing’, Aleph 6 (2006), 1355, at 18, 26–7. Sela and Freudenthal point out that in 1156 ibn Ezra wrote another commentary on the Psalms while in Rouen: ibid. 21.

8 Weber, Robert, ‘Un Nouveau manuscrit de la révision du psautier «Iuxta Hebraeos» due à Nicolas Maniacoria’, RB 85 (1975), 402–4; Linde, ‘Observations’, 160–1. Grabois, Aryeh claims that Maniacutius was the first Christian scholar to focus on the Psalms in that century: ‘The Hebraica Veritas and Jewish-Christian Intellectual Relations in the Twelfth Century’, Speculum 50 (1975), 613–34, at 628–9.

9 CChr.CM 262, xxxiv; Linde, ‘Basic Instruction’, 10–12.

10 See Linde, ‘Basic Instruction’, 13–15, for Maniacutius's place among known Christian Hebraists of that century.

11 Stein, David E. Sulomm, ‘Preface’, The JPS Hebrew-English Tanakh, 2nd edn (Philadelphia, PA, 1999), xv–xxi.

12 Linde, ‘Observations’, 159.

13 CChr.CM 262, xxxiii–xxxv, 178; Charlap, ‘Abraham Ibn Ezra's Viewpoint’, 8; Ezra, Abraham ibn, Commentary on the Pentateuch: Genesis (Bereshit), ed. and transl. Strickman, H. Norman and Silver, Arthur M. (New York, 1985), 1718; Signer, ‘Rabbi and magister’, 131. Levine, Étan, ‘The Biography of the Aramaic Bible’, Zeitschrift für die alttestamentliche Wissenschaft 94 (1982), 353–79, at 374, explains: ‘despite its didactic importance and element of sanctity, the Targum was not regarded as “sacred”, and the distinction was zealously maintained’.

14 McNamara, Martin, Targum and Testament Revisited: Aramaic Paraphrases of the Hebrew Bible (Grand Rapids, MI, 2010), 318. For a discussion of the ‘Arukh, see Cuomo, Luisa Ferretti, ‘Le Glosse Volgari nell'Arukh di R. Natan ben Yehi'el da Roma’, Medioevo Romanzo 22 (1998), 232–83.

15 Smalley, Beryl, The Study of the Bible in the Middle Ages, 3rd edn (Notre Dame, IN, 1978), xxxii; eadem, ‘Andrew of St Victor, Abbot of Wigmore: A Twelfth-Century Hebraist’, RTAM 10 (1938), 358–73.

16 Signer, ‘Rabbi and magister’, 116–17.

17 See Brown, Dennis, Vir Trilinguis: A Study on the Biblical Exegesis of Saint Jerome (Kampen, 1992); Kelly, J. N. D., Jerome: His Life, Writings, and Controversies, 2nd edn (Peabody, MA, 1998); Kraus, Matthew, ‘Hebraisms in the Old Latin Version of the Bible’, Vetus Testamentum 53 (2003), 487513. Hayward, Robert, in Targums and the Transmission of Scripture into Judaism and Christianity (Leiden, 2010), 281–2, determined that Jerome was skilled in Aramaic and Syriac as well as Hebrew.

18 Hayward, Targums, 301–4, 315–17.

19 Fiesoli, G., ‘La “lectio divina” Cisterciense da Stefano Harding a Nicolò Maniacutia’, Medioevo e Rinascimento. Annuario del Dipartimento di studi sul Medioevo e il Rinascimento dell'Università di Firenze 25 (2011), 161–97. Harding's complete Bible is in Dijon, Bibliothèque municipale, MSS 12–15. He also wrote of his work with Jewish scholars in the Monitum (c.1109): PL 166, 1373–6.

20 Berndt, Rainer, ‘The School of St. Victor in Paris’, in Sæbø, Magne, ed., Hebrew Bible, Old Testament: The History of its Interpretation, 2 vols (Göttingen, 2000), 1/ii, 486–9; Smalley, Study, 83–106.

21 See Smalley, Study, 77–82, 97–111, for a discussion of Hugh's predecessors and followers who also consulted learned Jews in Paris and elsewhere from as early as c.1070. This article presents the current state of knowledge regarding Christian Hebraism in mid-twelfth-century Rome; at this point there is only evidence for Maniacutius working as a Christian Hebraist in the city at that time.

22 Smalley, Study, 112–95; Goodwin, Deborah, ‘Take Hold of the Robe of a Jew:’ Herbert of Bosham's Christian Hebraism (Leiden, 2006), 7394.

23 Smalley, Study, 362.

24 On the concept of the ‘discourse community’, see Borg, Erik, ‘Discourse Community’, ELT Journal 57 (2003), 398400; Porter, James E., ‘Intertextuality and the Discourse Community’, Rhetoric Review 5 (1986), 3447. In the setting of mid-twelfth-century Rome, this informal group of scholars discussed common texts, and also circulated texts among themselves. The number of participants is uncertain; however, Maniacutius's Libellus clearly indicates communication and sharing of texts between Jewish and Christian scholars: see the excerpt from it at n. 48 below.

25 Vita beatae Constantidae virginis; Vita beatarum Praxedis et Pudentianae; Vita Sancti Hieronymi; Ad incorrupta pontificum nomina conservanda; Tractatus Nicolai Maniacutii de imagine SS. Salvatoris in Lateranensi palatio (also known as Historia imaginis Salvatoris and De sacra imagine); Libellus de corruptione et de correptione psalmorum et aliarum quarundam scripturarum; Suffraganeus bibliothece; revisions of the Psalter ad Romanum and Psalter iuxta Hebraeos (Jerome's Gallican Psalter), and a third revised Psalter that apparently has elements of all three versions; in addition, each revised Psalter has a preface.

26 CChr.CM 262, xxxii, 147–207. Linde notes numerous instances in Maniacutius's Suffraganeus bibliothece in which he used the works of Jewish scholars such as Abraham ibn Ezra and Rashi, but also Church Fathers and Christian scholars, including Jerome, Augustine of Hippo, Hugh of St Victor and Gregory the Great. Maniacutius's other texts also indicate his familiarity with specifically Roman ecclesiastical texts, e.g. Descriptio Lateranensis ecclesiae (c.1073–1105): see Wolf, Gerhard, ‘Laetare filia sion. Ecce ego venio et habitabo in medio tui: Images of Christ transferred to Rome from Jerusalem’, Jewish Art 23–24 (1997–8), 419–29, at 422–3. For further information on Rashi and his position within Jewish and Christian exegesis, see Kalman, Jason, ‘Medieval Jewish Biblical Commentaries and the State of Parshanut Studies’, Religion Compass 2/5 (2008), 125; Hailperin, Herman, ‘Christian Acquaintance with the Works of Rashi, 1125–1300’, in idem, Rashi and the Christian Scholars (Pittsburgh, PA, 1963), 103–34; Schoenfeld, Deborah, Isaac on Jewish and Christian Altars: Polemic and Exegesis in Rashi and the Glossa Ordinaria (New York, 2013); Stern, David, ‘The Hebrew Bible in Europe in the Middle Ages’, Jewish Studies, an Internet Journal 11 (2012), 235322, at 301.

27 For a brief history of the Septuagint, see Eaton, John, The Psalms: A Historical and Spiritual Commentary, with an Introduction and New Translation (London, 2005), 43–4.

28 Kelly, Jerome, 12–18. The Hexapla, compiled by Origen in the 230s, was a comparison of six different versions of the Christian Old Testament: the Hebrew text, the ‘Greek transliteration of the Hebrew’, the ancient Septuagint, and three Jewish revisions of the Septuagint then in circulation, by Aquila, Symmachus and Theodotion: Law, T. M., ‘Origen's Parallel Bible: Textual Criticism, Apologetics, or exegesis?JThS 59 (2008), 39.

29 The Gallican version of the Psalms, which Jerome had translated earlier from the Septuagint with the help of the Hexapla, was more familiar in most of Christian Europe, and was generally inserted into the Old Testament instead of a translation from the Hebrew. In the sixteenth century, the authoritative text became known as the Vulgate Bible: see Eaton, Psalms, 44. For a summary of these different translations and historical issues, see Kelly, Jerome, 89, 158, 283–6.

30 Maniacutius, Libellus, fol. 145r, col. B (Peri, ‘Correctores immo corruptores’, 91). His revision of the Psalterium Romanum is found today in only one manuscript: Rome, Archivio Capitolare Lateranense, S.M. in Trastevere, Arm. I, litt. A, num. 2, in capsa ferrea. The manuscript was examined in the archive of Santa Maria in Trastevere in 1953, but was moved to the archive in the Lateran basilica complex at a later date: Robert Weber, ‘Deux Préfaces au psautier dues à Nicolas Maniacoria’, RB 63 (1953), 317, at 4–5 n. 4.

31 The ‘intermediate version’ is referenced in the online catalogue entry for London, BL, MS Egerton 2908, fols 169r–185v, at:, accessed 27 August 2016. Linde noted Maniacutius's revisions of the Psalterium Romanum and the Psalterium iuxta Hebraeos: CChr.CM 262, xv–xvii, xxii–xxiv.

32 Brown, Vir Trilinguis, 101–2.

33 Holladay, William L., The Psalms through Three Thousand Years: Prayerbook of a Cloud of Witnesses (Minneapolis, MN, 1993), 4.

34 Rice, Eugene F. Jr, Saint Jerome in the Renaissance (Baltimore, MD, 1985), 1518.

35 Weber, ‘Deux Préfaces’, 3–17; CChr.CM 262, xv–xxv; see also PL 22, cols 183–202, at 185.

36 ‘Volens psalterium tuum sicut petieras, abba Dominice, ad exemplar nostrum, id est Cisterciensis Ordinis, emendare, amplius hoc quam tuum deprehendi corruptum. Quid faciam? Si enim hoc egero, non diminui corruptiones, quin potius augmentavi; sin autem, suspicionem pigritiae forsan incurram, dum putare potes falsum esse quod assero. Ut igitur hanc suspicionem valeam evitare, laborem aggrediar eo grandiorem quem exigis et nobis ipsis non minus quam tibi utilem, nisi forte in eorum manus incidat contemptorum, qui solam consuetudinem amplectentes nuda mendacia praeferunt veritati’: Maniacutius, Libellus, fol. 144r, col. A (Peri, ‘Correctores immo corruptores’, 88).

37 Lectio divina had been prescribed for the entire clergy by Augustine of Hippo (d. 430) and for monastics by Benedict of Nursia (d. 547): Lawrence, C. H., Medieval Monasticism, 3rd edn (Harlow, 2001), 30–4, 111–14, 142; Augustine, On Christian Doctrine (De doctrina Christiana), NPNF I 2, 476–7; Benedict, The Rule of St. Benedict, ed. Bruce L. Benarde, Dumbarton Oaks Medieval Library 6 (Harvard, MA, 2011).

38 On Maniacutius's attention to accuracy, see Boyle, Leonard, ‘Tonic Accent, Codicology, and Literacy’, in The Centre and its Compass: Studies in Medieval Literature in Honor of Professor John Leyerle, ed. Taylor, Robert A. et al. (Kalamazoo, MI, 1993), 110, at 3.

39 A definitive chronology of Maniacutius's life is still not established, therefore any correlation of his works with each clerical role he undertook remains insecure.

40 ‘Respondebis: et unde mendacium a veritate discernam? Ex Hebraico, inquam, fonte. . . . Cum ergo discordantia repereris exemplaria, ad linguam recurre unde translata sunt et de variantibus inter se voluminibus illi crede quem linguae de qua sumptum est invenies concordare. . . . Dices autem: forsan falsati sunt codices Iudaeorum. Respondebo: pro dubitatione ista tua non negligam sapientium consilium. Adhuc subiunges: Ego eos credo falsatos esse. . . . Et tamen aurem accommoda et audi quomodo nequeant facile violari. Penes Vetus Testamentum est totum eorum studium et hoc apud eos nullis est translatoribus variatum, ut una translatio possit cum alia commisceri. Praeterea vetus exemplar summo studio exaratum in synagogae loculo magna diligentia custoditur’: Maniacutius, Libellus, fol. 146r, cols A–B (Peri, ‘Correctores immo corruptores’, 92). Linde explains why Maniacutius turned to the Psalterium iuxta Hebraeos to correct the Latin Psalter versions, and why he believed the Hebrew was actually a more reliable guide to the original text: CChr.CM 262, xxxvii.

41 The translation of loculo is rather uncertain. According to Niermeyer, J. F. and Van de Kieft, C., Mediae Latinitatis Lexicon Minus, 2 vols (Leiden, 2002), 1: 808, loculus could mean a coffin, reliquary or grave. It is unclear how the Torah scroll would have been stored in a twelfth-century Roman synagogue, as compared to the Ashkenazic or Sephardic traditions, but it definitely would have been in a reverent and secure location within the synagogue; therefore ‘reliquary’ seems appropriate. In addition, that meaning would have been a familiar concept to Maniacutius: see also Stow, Kenneth R., Alienated Minority: The Jews of Medieval Latin Europe (Cambridge, MA, 1992), 69. This reference by Maniacutius to a loculus will be studied further in the context of the Roman Italo-Ashkenazic synagogue traditions. For an explanation of how the Torah was covered and protected in the synagogues of Rome in the early modern and modern eras, see Castro, Daniela, ed., Treasures of the Jewish Museum of Rome: Guide to the Museum and Its Collection, transl. Rosenberg, Lenore (Rome, 2010).

42 ‘Decrevi nanque cuncta loca, vel scriptorum incuria vel quorumlibet aliorum praesumptione corrupta, curiose notare et occasiones singularum corruptionum quanta possum cura detegere, adhibitis michi [sic] ad hoc undecunque suffragiis et maxime fonte veritatis Hebraicae, de quo me scis etsi modicum degustasse, sed et nova beati Ieronimi ac Romana translatione, aliis quoque, si possum, probationibus, ut ex multarum rationum collegio veritas facilius elucescat’: Maniacutius, Libellus, fol. 144r, col. A (Peri, ‘Correctores immo corruptores’, 88). Maniacutius's phrase fonte veritatis Hebraicae refers, apparently, to the Hebrew text.

43 Linde posits that Maniacutius's statement near the beginning of the Libellus regarding the ‘Hebrew truth, from which you know that I have tasted (even if a little)’, reflects a ‘humility-topos’: CChr.CM 262, xl.

44 See CChr.CM 262, 178, 206–7, for a listing of twenty-six instances identified by Linde in Maniacutius's Suffraganeus bibliothece that correlate with Abraham ibn Ezra's commentaries, and twenty-seven correlations with Rashi's texts.

45 CChr.CM 262, xvii n. 34; Weber, ‘Deux Préfaces’, 6–8.

46 Linde, ‘Basic Instruction’, 4.

47 ‘Interim mirari non desino quod haec Ieronimi iuxta Hebraicam veritatem translatio bibliothecis eius non habeatur inserta. Nam et si petente papa Damaso de Graeco prius transtulisse legatur et postea iterum atque iterum correxisse, ut ad Paulam et filiam eius Iuliam Eustochium in quodam prologo loquitur, nulla tamen earum editionum ita exprimit veritatem ut ista. Puto autem quod tam multis renovationibus iam ecclesia fastidita hanc, licet omnibus veriorem, nec bibliothecis inserere nec cantare in ecclesiis procuravit. Unde usque ad haec tempora exemplar eius reperiri vix poterat’: Maniacutius, Libellus, fol. 145r, col. B (Peri, ‘Correctores immo corruptores’, 90–1).

48 ‘Nam et ego illud forsitan non haberem, nisi quidam Hebraeus, mecum disputans et paene singula quae ei opponebam de psalmis aliter habere se asserens, hoc de Monte Cassino allatum esse penes quendam praesbyterum indicasset. Tunc primum ad Hebraeae linguae scientiam aspiravi’: Maniacutius, Libellus, fol. 145r, col. B (Peri, ‘Correctores immo corruptores’, 91).

49 Both Weber (‘Deux Préfaces’, 14–15) and Linde (CChr.CM 262, xv–xvii) indicate that copies of Maniacutius's Psalter iuxta Hebraeos are bound in two other codices: Montecassino MSS 434, 467.

50 Champagne, Marie Thérèse and Boustan, Ra'anan, ‘Walking in the Shadows of the Past: The Jewish Experience of Rome in the Twelfth Century’, Medieval Encounters 17 (2011), 464–94.

51 Simonsohn, Shlomo, ed., The Apostolic See and the Jews, Documents: 490–1404 (Toronto, ON, 1988), 15 (no. 19).

52 Twyman, Susan, Papal Ceremonial at Rome in the Twelfth Century (London, 2002), 201–6; Cencius, Liber Censuum, in Fabre, Paul and Duchesne, Louis, eds, Le Liber Censuum de l’église romaine, 3 vols (Paris, 1889–1952), 1:304–6, paragraphs [42]–[56]). For a discussion of medieval Ashkenazic Jewish life in northern European societies, see Baumgarten, Elisheva, ‘Daily Commodities and Religious Identity in the Medieval Jewish Communities of Northern Europe’, in Doran, John, Methuen, Charlotte and Walsham, Alexandra, eds, Religion and the Household, SCH 50 (Woodbridge, 2014), 97121.

53 Benjamin of Tudela, The Itinerary of Benjamin of Tudela: Travels in the Middle Ages, ed. and transl. Adler, Marcus Nathan (Malibu, CA, 1983), 63; Champagne and Boustan, ‘Walking’, 468–70.

54 Champagne and Boustan, ‘Walking’, 487.

55 Ibid. 472; Cuomo, ‘Le Glosse Volgari’, 232–83; see also Linde, ‘Basic Instruction’, 14; Grabois, Aryeh, ‘Écoles et structures sociales des communautés juives dans l'Occident aux IXe–XIIe siècles’, Gli Ebrei nell'alto Medioevo 2 (1980), 937–62, at 952.

56 Sela, Rise of Medieval Hebrew Science, 6–7.

57 CChr.CM 262, xxxiii. Linde states that ibn Ezra ‘brought the local Jewish community to intellectual flowering’.

58 Stern, ‘Hebrew Bible’, 248 n. 23; Sarna, Nahum M., ‘Ibn Ezra as an Exegete’, in Twersky, Isadore and Harris, Jay M., eds, Rabbi Abraham Ibn Ezra: Studies in the Writings of a Twelfth-Century Jewish Polymath (Cambridge, MA, 1993), 121, at 7–8.

59 CChr.CM 262, xxvii–xxx.

60 Grabois, ‘Écoles et structures’, 954–5.

61 Sela, Rise of Medieval Hebrew Science, 2.

62 Sela, Shlomo, Abraham Ibn Ezra on Nativities and a Continuous Horoscopy, Études sur le judaïsme médiéval 59 (Leiden, 2013), 4; Sela and Freudenthal, ‘Abraham Ibn Ezra's Scholarly Writings’, 18–48.

63 Sela, Rise of Medieval Hebrew Science, 106.

64 Ibid. 104–43.

65 Silver, Preface to ibn Ezra, Commentary on Genesis, ed. and transl. Strickman and Silver, vii.

66 Aranda, Mariano Gómez, ‘Grammatical Remarks in The Commentary of Abraham Ibn Ezra on Qohelet’, Sefarad 56 (1996), 6182, at 61, 80.

67 Signer, ‘Rabbi and magister’, 131.

68 Ibn Ezra, Commentary on Genesis, ed. and transl. Strickman and Silver, 17.

69 Sela and Freudenthal, ‘Abraham Ibn Ezra's Scholarly Writings’, 18–22; Greenspahn, Frederick E., ‘Abraham Ibn Ezra and the Origin of some Medieval Grammatical Terms’, Jewish Quarterly Review 76 (1986), 217–27.

70 Charlap, ‘Abraham Ibn Ezra's Viewpoint’, 4.

71 Ibid. 6; Stern, ‘Hebrew Bible’, 235–322.

72 CChr.CM 262, xxxiii–xxxv.

73 Charlap, ‘Abraham Ibn Ezra's Viewpoint’, 8; Ibn Ezra, Commentary on Genesis, ed. and transl. Strickman and Silver, 17–18; Signer, ‘Rabbi and magister’, 131; cf. CChr.CM 262, 178. While the Targum was used by several notable Jewish scholars of this era, including Rashi, it was not always consulted. Some eleventh-century Jewish scholars had advised that study of it be stopped, but this was not generally implemented except in the northern provinces of Spain under Christian rule: see n. 14 above, and Houtman, Alberdina, ‘The Role of the Targum in Jewish Education in Medieval Europe’, in eadem, von Staalduine-Sulman, Eveline and Kirn, Hans-Martin, eds, A Jewish Targum in a Christian World (Leiden, 2014), 8198, at 88, 91–2.

74 This raises the question of whether Maniacutius knew Aramaic too. In addition to numerous instances in which he utilized the texts of Rashi and ibn Ezra in his Suffraganeus bibliothece, Maniacutius also used the Targum: CChr.CM 262, 207.

75 Sela, Rise of Medieval Hebrew Science, 23; Maniacutius, Libellus, fol 145r, col. B (Peri, ‘Correctores immo corruptores’, 91). The question of Maniacutius's actual fluency in Hebrew is still unanswered; however, on the basis of evidence in the Suffraganeus bibliothece, Linde suggested that his skill was ‘between cultural and lexical Hebraism’ (CChr.CM 262, xli), terms that Michael Signer introduced in ‘Polemic and Exegesis’, 21–32. In other words, Maniacutius could not read Hebrew completely independently, but he was able to deal with Hebrew texts with the help of his Hebrew consultants.

76 Maniacutius, Libellus, fol 158r, col. A (Peri, ‘Correctores immo corruptores’, 121).

77 Ibn Ezra, Commentary on Genesis, ed. and transl. Strickman and Silver, 18.

78 CChr.CM 262, xxxiii–xxxv.

79 Sela, Rise of Medieval Hebrew Science, 328–9.

I wish to thank Michael Aaron Champagne and Steve Schoenig for their generous assistance with Latin translations.

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Christian Hebraism in Twelfth-Century Rome: A Philologist's Correction of the Latin Bible through Dialogue with Jewish Scholars and their Hebrew Texts

  • Marie Thérèse Champagne (a1)


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