EH 48 C 01-02


Against Christianity

Prevenciones divinas

Polemical treatise by Isaac Orobio de Castro. Amsterdam, early 18th-century copy.

Prevenciones / Divinas, Contra las /Vanas Ydolatrias de las / Gentes./ Por el Doctor Ishac Orobio de Castro / Cathedratico de Medicina, en la Insigne / vniversidad de Tolosa. / en Amsterdam Año.

On both front fly leaves ownership inscription: “Este livro pertenese a meo Filho

Jacob de Jeosuah Naar, Ao 1800.”

On the titlepage of part I and on f. 1r of part II is written in 19th-century writing: “Geschenk van den Opperrabbijn van Curaçao A.M. Chumaceiro.”



f. 1r-7v: Prologue.

f. 8r-141r: Text.

f. 141v: blank

f. 142r-144r: Table of contents.


f. [1]-2v: Title and prologue.

f. 3r-215r: Text.

f. 215v-217v: Table of contents.

Presented to Ets Haim Library by A.M. Chumaceiro, chief rabbi of Curaçao in the second part of the 19th century.

According to Yosef Kaplan, Prevenciones divinas is one of the most incisive Orobio’s writings against Christianity. It was written between 1668 and 1675 and circulated widely in manuscript form among Sephardic Jews in Western Europe.

It is divided in two parts. In the first book, Orobio intends to prove that, in the Torah, God already warns the people of Israel on the Christianity and its attacks against the Law of Moses. He also criticises the Christian method of biblical exegesis (especially its attempts to find mystical meanings instead of choosing more obvious significations) and the accuracy of the Gospels as a historic source.

The second book is mostly a refutation against the Christian interpretations on the Old Testament prophecies about the coming of the Messiah, especially on Daniel 9 (20-7) and Isaiah 53.

Baron D’Holbach’s Israel vengé ou Exposition naturelle des Prophéties hébraïques que les Chrétiens appliquent à Jesus, leur prétendu Messie par Isaac Orobio (London, 1770) is the first printed edition of Orobio’s polemical writings, freely translated into French, and including abstracts from the Prevenciones divinas, under the title “Dissertation sur le Messie”.

Adam Sutcliffe, Judaism and Enlightenment, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2003. Yosef Kaplan, From Christianity to Judaism: the story of Isaac Orobio de Castro, London, Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2004.

Other Prevenciones divinas copies in this collection in EH 48 B 6, EH 48 B 13, EH 48 C 12 and EH 48 D 6.

Spanish / Paper / 23,4 x 18,2 cm. / Two parts, I: [2] + 141 + [3], II: 215+ [2] ff. / 19 lines to a page / Iberian current writing of the early 18th century / Title of part II written on top of f. 1r / Catchwords at the end of each folium / Contemporary gold-tooled leather binding.

Fuks 219. Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian.