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Medical Glossaries in the Hebrew Tradition: Shem Tov Ben Isaac, Sefer Almansur

With a Supplement on the Romance and Latin Terminology


Gerrit Bos, Guido Mensching and Julia Zwink

The Sefer Almansur contains a pharmacopeia of about 250 medicinal ingredients with their Arabic names (in Hebrew characters), their Romance (Old Occitan) and occasionally Hebrew equivalents. The pharmacopeia, which describes the properties and therapeutical uses of simple drugs featured at the end of Book Three of the Sefer Almansur. This work was translated into Hebrew from the Arabic Kitāb al-Manṣūrī (written by al-Rāzī) by Shem Tov ben Isaac of Tortosa, who worked in Marseille in the 13th century.

Gerrit Bos, Guido Mensching and Julia Zwink supply a critical edition of the Hebrew text, an English translation and an analysis of the Romance and Latin terminology in Hebrew transcription. The authors show the pharmaceutical terminological innovation of Hebrew and of the vernacular, and give us proof of the important role of medieval Jews in preserving and transferring medical knowledge.
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Medical Synonym Lists from Medieval Provence: Shem Tov ben Isaac of Tortosa: Sefer ha - Shimmush. Book 29 

Part 1: Edition and Commentary of List 1 (Hebrew - Arabic - Romance/Latin)


Gerrit Bos, Martina Hussein, Guido Mensching and Frank Savelsberg

Medieval synonym literature is a comprehensive field, which, as a text genre, has not received due attention in philological scholarship until now. This volume contains the first critical edition of Book 29 of Shem Tov ben Isaac's Sefer ha-Shimmush and a lexicological analysis of the medico-botanical terms in the first of the two synonym lists of this book. The Sefer ha-Shimmush was compiled in Southern France in the middle of the thirteenth century. The list edited in this volume consists of Hebrew or Aramaic lemmas, which are glossed by Arabic, Latin and Romance (Old Occitan and, in part, Old Catalan) synonyms written in Hebrew characters. Containing over 700 entries, this edition is one of the most extensive glossaries of its kind. It gives scholars a wide overview of the formation of medieval medical terminology in the Romance languages and Hebrew, as well as within the Arabic and Latin traditions.