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A printing press established in northern Italy by Gerson ben Moses Soncino produced the first machine-printed Hebrew Pentateuch (the Five Books of Moses) along with the prophetic books and the Song of Songs, Book of Ruth, Book of Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, and the Book of Esther, on this date in 1492. The Soncino family, Sephardi Italian Jews (from the town of Soncino in the duchy of Milan), had already produced the first book ever printed in Hebrew type — an edition of the Talmudic tractate Berakhot — in 1483.

“Out of Zion shall go forth the Law, and the word of the Lord from Soncino.” —Parody of verse from Isaiah II, inserted by the Soncino typesetter into the Sefer ha-Ikkarim (Book of Principles), 1485.