Publius Lentulus his Letter to the Senate of Rome describing the Person of Our Saviour.There appeared in these our Days, a Man of great Virtue, named Jesus Christ [...]
Engraving, sheet 350 x 235mm (13¾ x 8¾"). Trimmed inside platemark; staining at top. On laid paper with watermark.
Publius Lentulus is a fictitious person, said to have been Governor of Judea before Pontius, and to have written a letter to the Roman Senate, concerning Jesus. The letter of Lentulus is certainly apocryphal for a number of reasons. There never was a Governor of Jerusalem; no Procurator of Judea is known to have been called Lentulus, and a Roman governor would not have addressed the Senate in the way represented. Lastly a Roman writer would not have employed the expressions, 'prophet of truth', 'sons of men' or 'Jesus Christ'. The former two are Hebrew idioms, the third is taken from the New Testament. The letter, therefore, gives a description of Jesus such as Christian piety conceived him. The letter was first printed in the 'Life of Christ' by Ludolph the Carthusian (Cologne, 1474), and in the 'Introduction to the works of St. Anselm' (Nuremberg, 1491). But it is neither the work of St. Anselm nor of Ludolph. According to the manuscript of Jena, a certain Giacomo Colonna found the letter in 1421 in an ancient Roman document sent to Rome from Constantinople. It must be of Greek origin, and translated into Latin during the thirteenth or fourteenth century, though it received its present form at the hands of a humanist of the fifteenth or sixteenth century.
For a later edition of the letter see ref. 8046.
[Ref: 37937] £190.00