This text was prepared by William Gross: A kabbalistic commentary on the Song of Songs by R. Elijah b. Moses Ashkenazi Loanz, and one of Konrad Waldkirch’s earliest Hebrew printings. In the text are small faces between some words.
R. Loanz was the scion of a family that traced its descent to Rashi, and a paternal grandson of R. Joseph Joselmann of Rosheim. He had a distinguished career as rabbi and Rosh Yeshiva in a number of communities in Germany, including Fulda, Hanau, Friedberg and Worms. A kabbalist of repute, Loanz wrote amulets, is credited with many miracles, and is the subject of legends, among them that he made a golem so that he acquired the epithet Elijah Ba’al Shem. He also engaged in disputations with prominent Christian clergymen.
Rinat Dodim has considerable kabbalistic content and emphasizes ethical and piestistic behavior. In one part is mentioned looking with one eye. The text is thus illustrated with gazing faces with only one eye. The title page has a typographic floral border and decorative floral motif.
This is the only edition of Rinat Dodim, and is one of only two books written by Loanz, a prolific writer, that was printed in his lifetime.
Konrad Waldkirch, a Basle printer, began publishing Hebrew books in c. 1581. He was the son-in-law of Pietro Perna, a printer of repute. Waldkirch acquired Ambrosius Froben’s Hebrew typographic material, including illustrations by Hans Holbein, and issued a variety of Hebrew titles during his c. 30 years of activity. His press was active until 1612.