A reminder for the bible-lievers

Just check this out, fellows.

the egyptian 10 commandments

More info:


ginsburg and his masterpiece

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Innocent III about the bible

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The Mosaic Law according to the jews

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lord of hosts image 01

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Introduction of the Massoretico-Critical Edition of the Hebrew Bible

Written by Christian David Ginsburg, 1897.

There are many links for this work, you can find it in one book, or in 2 books.

As one book, here is the link for download:
As two books, here are the links for download:

You can also read it on line:

It’s interesting to read these sections from Chapter IX, section 5 (the images were taken from the downloaded books):

viii. The Removal of Indelicate Expressions and Anthropomorphisms, &c, from the Text


ix. The Emendations of the Sopherim


x. Impious Expressions towards the Almighty


xi. The Safeguarding of the Tetragrammaton


 xii. The attempt to Remove the Application of the Names of False Gods to Jehovah



Who is Christian David Ginsburg?

“Christian David Ginsburg (25 December 1831 in Warsaw, Congress Poland (now Poland) – 7 March 1914 in Palmers Green, Middlesex, England) was a Polish-born, British Bible scholar and student of the masoretic tradition in Judaism. He was born to a Jewish family in Warsaw, converting to Christianity at the age of 15.”

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_David_Ginsburg

“Besides editions of the Song of Songs, 1857, and Ecclesiastes, 1861, he published essays on the Karaites, 1862; and Essenes, 1864; and a full account in English of the Cabala, 1865.He then devoted himself to Masoretic studies, publishing the text and translation of Elias Levita’s “Massoret ha-Massoret” in 1867, and of Jacob b. Hayyim’s “Introduction to the Rabbinic Bible” in the same year. He was elected a member of the Board of Revisers of the Old Testament in 1870, and devoted himself to the collation of all the extant remains of the Masorah, three volumes of which he published in 1880-86. Based upon these collations, he edited a new text of the Old Testament for the Trinitarian Bible Society, which was published in 1894 under the title “The Massoretico-Critical Text of the Hebrew Bible.” To this he wrote an introduction, published together with a volume of facsimiles of the manuscripts of the Hebrew Bible, in 1897…”

Source: http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/6680-ginsburg-christian-david

Even though he published some essays about some books of the bible, his main work is “The introduction to the Massoretico-Critical Edition of the Hebrew Bible.” We discuss it on the next post.

ginsburg and his masterpiece

The Massoreth ha-Massoreth of Elias Levita

We talked about this book on this post:
“There are two translation of his book. In 1772 the whole book was translated into German by Christian Gottlob Meyer, and in 1867 into English by Christian D. Ginsburg.”

A brief explanation of the English version.


“The Massoreth ha-Massoreth of Elias Levita provides a guide to the traditional marginalia to the Hebrew text of the Old Testament. This comprehensive and exhaustive text includes appendices, such as a mnemonic poem for how often each letter appears in the Bible. Included are column by column translations, as well as a full introduction on the work and the calamitous life of Levita.”

The English version by Christian D. Ginsburg is available on these links:

MassoretHaMassoret1 English version

As we said before, there is also an older German version, available on these links:

“In 1771 German Bible scholar Johann Salomo Semler (1725-91) produced a German translation of R. Eliyahu Bahur’s (Elias Levita) מסורת המסורת titled Übersetzung des Buchs Massoreth Hamassoreth.(Semler was the editor; the translation itself was done by an apostate Jew called Christian Gottlob Meyer….)”

Source of the commentary: http://onthemainline.blogspot.com/2008/05/german-translation-of-hebrew-book.html

MassoretHaMassoret2 German version

Who is Elias Levita?

Ok, this time we’ll show you the story of this guy. Pay attention to his deeds, he wrote a book we are interested in: “Massoret Ha Massoret.”

“Elia Levita (13 February 1469 – 28 January 1549), (Hebrew: אליהו בן אשר הלוי אשכנזי) also known as Elijah Levita, Elias Levita, Élie Lévita, Elia Levita Ashkenazi, Eliahu Bakhur (“Eliahu the Bachelor”) was a Renaissance Hebrew grammarian, scholar and poet. He was the author of the Bovo-Bukh (written in 1507–1508), the most popular chivalric romance written in Yiddish. Living for a decade in the house of Cardinal Egidio da Viterbo, he was also one of the foremost tutors of Christian notables in Hebrew and Jewish mysticism during the Renaissance.” Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elia_Levita

You can also check the French wikipedia:

It’s curious that in wikipedia in English  they don’t mention Elias Levita as the author of Massoret ha-Massoret (but in the french version they do). So we need to check the Jewish Encyclopedia to find out more about this issue.

“Massoret.” source: http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/5590-elias-levita

“Two years after the completion of the “Sefer ha-Zikronot” Elijah published his Masoretic work “Massoret ha-Massoret” (Venice, 1538), divided into three parts, respectively denominated “First Tables,” “Second Tables,” and “Broken Tables,” each with an introduction. The “First Tables” is divided into ten sections, or commandments (“‘Aseret ha-Debarim”), dealing with the “full” and “defective” writing of syllables. The “Second Tables” treats of the “ḳere” and “ketib,” “ḳameẓ” and “pataḥ,” “dagesh,” “mappiḳ,” “rafe,” etc. The “Broken Tables” discusses the abbreviations used by the Masorites. In the third introduction Elijah produces an array of most powerful arguments to prove that the vowel-points in the Hebrew Bibles were invented by the Masorites in the fifth century of the common era. This theory, although suggested by some Jewish scholars as early as the ninth century, provoked a great outcry among the Orthodox Jews, who ascribed to the vowel-points the greatest antiquity. They were already dissatisfied with Elijah for giving instruction in Hebrew to Christians, since the latter openly confessed that they studied the Hebrew language with the hope of finding in the Hebrew texts, especially in the Cabala, arguments against Judaism. To this Elijah replied in the first introduction to the “Massoret ha-Massoret” that he taught only the elements of the language and did not teach Cabala at all. Moreover, he pointed out that Christian Hebraists generally defended the Jews against the attacks of the fanatical clergy. Elijah’s theory concerning the modernityof the vowel-points caused still greater excitement among Christians, and for three centuries it gave occasion for discussions among Catholic and Protestant scholars, such as Buxtorf, Walton, De Rossi, and others. The “Massoret ha-Massoret” was so favorably received that in less than twelve months after its appearance it was republished at Basel (1539). In this edition Sebastian Münster translated into Latin the three introductions, and gave a brief summary of the contents of the three parts. The third part, or the “Broken Tables,” was republished separately at Venice in 1566, under the title “Perush ha-Massoret we-Ḳara Shemo Sha’are Shibre Luḥot.” This part of the book was again republished, with additions, by Samuel ben Ḥayyim at Prague in 1610. The three introductions were also translated into Latin by Nagel (Altdorf, 1758-71). In 1772 the whole book was translated into German by Christian Gottlob Meyer, and in 1867 into English by Christian D. Ginsburg.”