Arabic Gospels

[Arabic Gospels].
Evangelium sanctum Domini nostri Iesu Christi conscriptum a quatuor Evangelistis Sanctis, idest, Matthaeo, Marco, Luca, et Iohanne.
Rome: Typographia Medicea, 1591. (Prothro B-12)

Translated from the Vulgate by Giovanni Battista Raimondi (1540–1630), the first edition of the New Testament in Arabic was one of the earliest books of the Typographia Medicea, a press established by Ferdinando de’ Medici for the purpose of disseminating the Gospels in oriental languages. Although intended to aid instruction, the woodcut illustrations by Antonio Tempesta may have hampered missionary efforts as Muslims were forbidden to contemplate religious images. Exhibited is the opening to the Gospel of Mark.