Immanuel Tremellius

Immanuel Tremellius

Immanuel Tremellius (1510 – 9 October 1580), was an Italian Jewish convert to Christianity. He was known as a Bible translator.


He was born at Ferrara, and educated at the University of Padua. He was converted about 1540 to the Catholic faith through Cardinal Pole, but embraced Protestantism in the following year, and went to Strasburg to teach Hebrew.

Owing to the wars of the Reformation in Germany he was compelled to seek asylum in England, where he resided at Lambeth Palace with Archbishop Cranmer in 1547. In 1549 he succeeded Paul Fagius as regius professor of Hebrew at Cambridge.

On the death of Edward VI of England he returned to Germany in 1553. At Zweibrücken he was imprisoned as a Calvinist. [Nicholas Barker, "The Perils of Publishing in the Sixteenth Century: Pietro Bizari and William Parry, Two Elizabethan Misfits, in Edward Chaney, Joseph Burney Trapp, Peter Mack (editors), "England and the Continental Renaissance: Essays in Honour of J. B. Trapp" (1990), pp. 125-6.] He became professor of Old Testament at the university of Heidelberg in 1561, and remained there until he was expelled in 1567. He ultimately found refuge at the College of Sedan, where he died.


His chief literary work was a Latin translation of the Bible from the Hebrew and Syriac. The New Testament translation appeared in 1569, at Geneva. The five parts relating to the Old Testament were published at Frankfort-on-the-Main between 1575 and 1579, in London in 1580, and in numerous later editions. The work was joint with Franciscus Junius (the elder), his son-in-law. This translation was favoured by John Milton [William B. Hunter, John T. Shawcross (editors), "Milton Encyclopedia" (1981), p. 88.] . It was used also by John Donne for his version of "Lamentations [David L. Jeffrey, "A Dictionary of Biblical Tradition in English" (1992), p. 433.] .

Tremellius also translated into Hebrew John Calvin's "Catechism" (Paris, 1551), and wrote a "Chaldaic" and Syriac grammar (Paris, 1569).


*Kenneth Austin (2007), "From Judaism to Calvinism: The Life and Writings of Immanuel Tremellius (C.1510-1580)"
* W. Becker: "Immanuel Tremellius, ein Proselytenleben im Zeitalter der Reformation", 1890

External links

* [ Source]
* [ Kirchenlexikon]
* [ Literaturliste im Online-Katalog] der Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin


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