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NOLA, MENAHEM (JOHN PAUL EUSTHATIUS):

Italian convert to Christianity; born about 1540; died at Rome about 1602. Nothing is known of Nola's life before his conversion except that he was the instructor in Hebrew of Thomas Aldobrandino, brother of Pope Clement VIII., and that he had frequent discussions with his pupil on religious topics. It was probably Aldobrandino that induced Nola to embrace Christianity, and Nola accordingly was baptized in 1568, assuming the name of Eusthatius. He afterward wrote several works in Italian, mainly in defense of Christianity. "Sacro Settenario" (Naples, 1579) is a compilation of extracts from the Bible, with an explanation of the ceremony of the opening of the gates in the year of jubilee. This work was dedicated by Nola to Cardinal Aloysius d'Este. "Salutari Discorsi" (ib. 1582) contains nine sermons on various dogmas of Christianity, including those of the Trinity and of the necessity for the coming of the Messiah. Some of Nola's works are found in the library of the Vatican, among them being commentaries, in manuscript, on Lamentations and Ruth. He wrote also a description of the Hebrew manuscripts in that library.

Bibliography:
  • Fürst, Bibl. Jud. iii. 38-39;
  • Kalkar, Israel und die Kirche, p. 72, Hamburg, 1869;
  • Wolf, Bibl. Hebr. i. and iii., No. 1441.
S. M. Sel.
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