THE PURCHASE OF HEBREW BOOKS BY THE ENGLISH PARLIAMENT IN 1647

Eastern studies were occupying the minds of several famous English? men in the first half of the seventeenth century, and the London book? sellers of the period did a brisk business in Oriental books. Thus in the catalogue printed for Fetherstone in 1628, pp. 21-25 are filled with the titles of Hebrew, Chaldaic, and Arabic books. In Robert Martin’s list of 1633, in an anonymous list of 1637, in Richard Whitaker’s of 1645, and Octavian Pulleyn’s of 1657, there are also many Hebrew books. Most of these books, as the dealers explicitly state, were imported from Italy. Considering this last fact, it seems curious to find (Cal. State Papers Dom. Series, Charles 1,1640, Apr. 15) a petition to Laud by certain London booksellers, against the importation?”notwithstanding the decree of Star Chamber,” for his two years’ licence had expired?by one Adrian Ylacke, a Hollander, of u divers bales or packets of

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