Sahula, Isaac ben Solomon ibn Abi (1244-1282)
משל הקדמוני / יצחק בן שלמה בן סהולה [Mashal ha-Kadmoni]
Woodmere, N.Y. : Pardes Rimonim Press, 1987. Quarto, gilt-lettered quarter morocco over papered boards, fore- and lower edges uncut, pp 282, printed letterpress, woodcuts; text in Hebrew; housed in a matching slipcase.
‘Mashal Haqadamoni is a reprint of the Venetian 1546 edition with its 80 woodcuts some of which were recut for this edition. Printed at the Pardes Rimonim Press in Woodmere, New York, 1987. Text composed by hand in Rimon type and printed on an 1865 Albion press by Raphael Podde with the assistance of Sara Regeur. Copies 1 – 100 printed on Barcham Green hand made paper. 3 copies on vellum. Hannuka 5748. Copy number 31’ – the colophon.
Isaac ben Solomon ibn abi Sahula was a Judeo-Spanish poet, scholar, physician and kabbalist who lived in Castile during the reign of Alfonso the Wise.
‘Meshal ha-Kadmoni (between 1281 and 1284), was a book of fables expressly written to displace, with an original Hebrew work, such light literature as Kalila and Dimna and the Voyages of Sinbad the Sailor, which were read extensively by Jews in the Middle Ages in Hebrew translations. Hence Ibn Sahula introduced in his book a similar structure and mode of presentation, and even added illustrations to his book, as was prevalent in non-Jewish literature. The manuscripts and all the printed editions of the work are embellished with extremely interesting miniatures or woodcuts. Divided into five chapters, Meshal ha-Kadmoni contains a large collection of parables, stories, and tales, all written in maqāma-like form with pedagogical purpose.’ (Jewish Virtual Library)