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Wrestling with Rashi
Wrestling with RashiSunday, August 26, 2007 3:00 pm
The most popular Christian Bible commentary in late medieval and early modern Europe was Nicholas de [of] Lyra's Postilla Litteralis Super Totam Bibliam, a vast work that incorporated Jewish interpretations, especially those of Rashi, into commentary on both the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament.
On the occasion of the Asher Library and Newberry Library's joint acquisition of a rare 1481 edition of the Postilla, historian Deeana Copeland Klepper spoke about what brought Christian scholars like Nicholas to Jewish teachings on the Bible and the challenges these scholars faced.
Illustrations (some based on drawings by Rashi) were used to differentiate interpretations. Dr. Klepper highlighted her talk with images from lavishly illuminated copies of the text.
Deeana Copeland Klepper holds a PhD in medieval European history from Northwestern University and teaches about the religious culture of the Middle Ages at Boston University. She is the recipient of numerous prizes and fellowships from organizations including the American Academy in Rome and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Her book, The Insight of Unbelievers, profiles Nicholas de Lyra.
Aquisition of the Postilla made possible by Eugene and Janet Lerner and members of the Asher Library Visiting Committee.