Lot 19: LaYesharim Tehilla, by the Ramchal - Amsterdam, 1743 - First Edition Printed by the Author in Only 50 Copies - A Handsome Wide-margined Copy - Handwritten Correction
November 15, 2016
Jerusalem, IsraelLive Auction
Description: LaYesharim Tehilla, a morality play by Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto, the Ramchal. [Amsterdam], . Printed by the orphans of Shlomo Katz Proops. Additional leaf preceding title page [with title in red ink], followed by the title page [partially in red ink]. Written on the title page: "Poem for the wedding day of the wise R. Ya'akov de Chaves with the modest praiseworthy bride Ms. Rachel de Vega Enriques". LaYesharim Tehilla is one of three plays written by the Ramchal (the other two are Ma'ase Shimshon and Migdal Oz) and is considered one of his most important works. The heroine of the play is Tehilla (Praise), daughter of Hamon (Multitude), who is designated to wed Yosher (Rectitude), son of Emet (Truth), but due to the conquest of the city by the army of "Mevucha" (Confusion), erroneously the designated groom Yosher was exchanged with Rahav (Pride). With a masterly use of language, the work addresses issues of ethics and philosophy. In his introduction to the play, the Ramchal writes: "There is nothing like a parable to reveal truth and to teach to bring the hidden into the light, to open unseeing eyes...". The Ramchal printed only 50 copies of this work in celebration of the marriage of his friend R. Ya'akov de Chaves, to give to the bride and groom and to their relatives. In his introduction to the second edition (Berlin, 1780), the publisher R. Shlomo Dubna writes: " This book was printed by the author himself in Amsterdam, in 1743 and he only printed 50 copies that were all brought to the libraries of Sephardi wealthy individuals in Amsterdam. Therefore, he who seeks the book cannot find it unless he pays a large sum, therefore I have reprinted it". Due to the popularity of the composition, it has been printed many times. This edition of LaYesharim Tehilla has a particularly high bibliophilic value. Printed on high-quality paper with very wide margins, it is one of the greatest achievements of 18th century Hebrew printing in Amsterdam. On page [29b], words which were omitted are added by hand in square vowelized script. This correction does not appear in other copies which we inspected but they were printed in the following editions [with a slight variation]. Possibly, the correction is in the handwriting of the author himself.  leaves. 23X30 cm. Especially wide margins. Good condition. Some leaves have stains. Two small holes on leaves  and . Several tiny tears to margins. New binding, with parts of the original binding.