This text was prepared by William Gross:
This edition of Sefer Kol Bo, an anonymous anthology of Franco-German ritual laws, is the most beautiful book published by Gershom Soncino in Rimini, and one of the last Hebrew books he printed in Italy. Its title page shows Gershom’s well-known printer’s device, a fortified stone tower, which he introduced while in Rimini and continued to use in Salonika and Constantinople.
Gershom Soncino printed books in ten Italian towns. It was in Rimini that he printed his last Hebrew book in Italy before fleeing his native land in 1527 and settling first in Salonika and then in Constantinople. In both cities he continued to print books in Hebrew. He died in Constantinople in 1534 after a life of wandering from place to place with his press and his bundles of books.
Title page with ornate foliate frame, and title in decorative letters. Contrary to popular belief, the tower of Soncino’s printer’s mark bears no resemblance to any real tower in Rimini or in Soncino. The device simply illustrates the accompanying verse from the book of Proverbs (18:10): “The name of the Lord is a mighty tower; the righteous runneth into it, and is set on high.”