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An Extract of a Letter from Amsterdam
to Mr H. 24. Octob. 1647.
The Conversion of the Iewes might very much bee advanced by their Caballisticall Bookes and the paines of such Learned Linguists, who have not only a smattering of the language, but are likewise thoroughly acquainted with all the tearmes of Art used by any of them. But of those there are so few amongst the Professors of Christianity, that as yet I have met with none sufficiently qualified this way, but only Rittangel. But the Man is of such an vntoward and humerous disposition, that there is no dealing with him. Amongst the Iewes likewise there are not many which can translate well. Yet if meanes could bee raised (I meane a hundred lib. for 6. or 7. yeares) I know a Gentleman which would oblige himself every halfe a yeare to have in readines the translation of any such Bookes as shall bee made cheife of and approoved by the Christian world. His name is Mons. B. a man of transcendent abilities this way and an Excellent Christian to my owne Knowledge. But
the apprehensives of want and poverty is such a stone which every hand cannot role away from the sepulchre of his heart. [Hartlib's hand: I conceave that] [another hand:] Amsterdam where there is a Synagogue of Iewes and a constant way of Correspondencie towards the Prientall Parts of the World
and where there are some and where there are some alreadie in a Publick way intending the promotion of those studies will bee a place more fit for his abode then any in England except something extraordinary were done by those of London or the Parliament for the Advancement of Universal Learning.
Extract of another Letter.
I wish that a Prebends Place may bee dedicated for the Advancement of Iewish Learning and to that effect conferred to one who now is at Amsterdam spending himself through many difficulties vpon the Edition of the Misnajot in Latin and of the chiefe Commentaries which are written therupon, which hee hath translated but wanteth assistance and support to bring them to the presse. If you would procure such a Motion to bee made seconded and caried, you would doe a Worke of great
honor to the Parliament of England and to yourself and those that should further it with you; and of singular Charitie to the Church of God and to that poore Nation (whose calling wee hope God will shortly bring to passe) and to him whom God hath eminently fitted to bee Instrumental therein but lyeth vnder great pressures, and is deserted of friends. <In a word> if[altered from If] the Motion bee effectually entertained j can assure you of 2. things. First that there is not any one thing which this Parliament can doe for Learning, which will advance their credit so much amongst Forrainers. 2. that wee shall haue every [year?] some new fruit of this seed. The Gentelman as j told you before is already engaged in the Worke, some extraordinary straits fall vpon him which are like to take him of from it except the good hand of God (wherof j hope you will bee the blessed Instrument) by a Providence in this kinde bee stretched out vnto him. I am sure you are not vnwilling to doe what j sue for, therefore j shall vrge you no further but
recommend the matter to the blessing of God in your hand. The Lord direct and prosper you in this and all your vndertakings for his Glory./
An other Extract of a Letter from AMSTERdam:
For the modells of the Iewish magnificencys, they are 3; one of the Temple of Solomon, another of his royall palace, a 3d of Moses Tabernacle. all done with incomparable exactnesse first the Modell and everything in the Modell
and every thing in the modell, bearing a certaine reall, and true geometricall proportion, one to another and each unto the thinges themselves. 2d Manefesting and betraying many things Both in the wisdome and magnificencie[altered] of the structure and in the figures of thinges themselves to all the Christians till now plainly unknowne; and of great use to the understanding of many places of scripture and to the apprehending of many Admirable places of Scripture mysteries. viz. concerning the Cherubims, Sanctum Sanctorum[altered], Tables of shew bread, Tables of the Law with severall others of all which wee have had hitherto perperous and foolish notions. 3dly All this composed by one of the most Learned amoungst their Rabbies, and according to the unquestionable authority of their best and most approved Doctours.
[Hartlib's hand: ## see the 2d page]
A Another Extract of a Letter from
Concerning the Temple: when I moved
before Mr. B. about it, and told him of an Intent to buy[altered from by] it, and that I thought