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The present volume contains articles based on papers delivered at the two international conferences organized as part of the Between Two Worlds research project in 2017 and 2019. Obadiah Sforno was an influential Jewish thinker of sixteenth-century Italian Renaissance, whose religious and exegetical authority has had an enduring legacy. The collected essays offer an unprecedented and much desired overview of his life and thought with an emphasis on the neglected philosophical dimension of his oeuvre, as seen in both his biblical commentaries and his sole philosophical treatise Light of the Nations.
Light of the Nations is a philosophical work written by the Jewish intellectual and eminent biblical commentator Obadiah Sforno (ca. 1475–1550). His treatise, an apology for both Jewish and universal monotheistic beliefs, was published in Hebrew in 1537 under the title Or ‘Ammim and was translated by the author into Latin as Lumen Gentium in 1548. Written in the style of a classical medieval Scholastic summa, the treatise’s multilingual and multicultural dimensions reveal key humanist ideas that prevailed in the cities of northern Italy during the early modern period, while also speaking to its author’s abiding exegetical rationality.