This text was prepared by William Gross:
Two of four volumes that comprise the Tanach printed by Christopher Plantin (circa 1520 - 1589) in 1566, only two years after he established his press in Antwerp. They are a beautiful printing, as were all of Plantin's work. The fonts are elegant and the title pages finely designed. These two books are bound in contemporary tooled parchment and are labeled with the initials ZAK and the year 1582.
Antwerp became an important printing center with the arrival of Christopher Plantin (c.1520-89) in 1564 from Paris. Using twenty-two pressed by 1576, Plantin was responsible for more than 2,000 publications in Antwerp and Leiden, making him the most productive printer/publisher of his time. Originally a bookbinder, he began to print books in 1555. Of those, more than thirty titles, biblical books and grammatical works, have significant Hebrew content. Most impressive is his Royal Polyglot, the Biblia Sacra hebraice, chaldaice, graece et latine...(1569-1572), printed in eight volumes for Philip II of Spain. Prior to that, however, he printed this Biblia Hebraica in three formats: a one volume quarto, a two volume octavo, and, as seen here, a four volume sextodecimo.