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Auction Description for Kedem: Auction 53 - Rare and Important Items
Viewing Notes:
Thursday 10.11.16 12:00 - 22:00 Sunday 13.11.16 12:00 - 20:00 Monday 14.11.16 12:00 - 20:00 Tuesday 15.11.16 12:00 - 18:00

Auction 53 - Rare and Important Items (168 Lots)

by Kedem Public Auction House Ltd


168 lots with images

November 15, 2016

Live Auction

Jerusalem, Israel

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Small Torah Scroll - Central Europe, 18th/19th Century

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Description: Small Torah scroll. [Western Poland or Germany, 18th/19th century]. Tiny handsome script with tagim (serifs). Vellish Ashkenazi script [the Vellish script originated in Spain, and was passed on to Europe by Jews expelled from Spain. It was common throughout Europe in Sephardi communities such as Amsterdam as well as in Ashkenazi communities]. The words Shnei HaSe'erim (Parshat Acharei Mot) are at the top of a column according to Sephardic custom. The manner of writing, type of vellum, the stiches and layout are characteristic to Western Poland or Germany of the 18th-19th centuries. Rolled on two Atzei Chaim, made of dark high-quality wood, with two large silver finials (shaped as pomegranates) and with four silver bands decorated with leaves and flowers. Height of vellum: 18.5 cm. Height of Atzei Chaim: 54 cm. Good-fair condition. Stains, corrections, reinforcements and replacements of several membranes. The membrane with Parshat Metzora-Acharei Mot is renewed. Without mantle.

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Illustrated Vellum Esther Scroll - Europe, 18th Century

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Description: Illustrated Esther scroll, on vellum. [Holland or Italy, 18th century?]. Ink and paint on vellum. "HaMelech" scroll (most of the columns begin with the word "HaMelech" [The King]). 5 vellum membranes, 16 columns, 23 rows per column. Tall branches with leaves and colorful flowers rise between the columns. At the top of each column are birds (three kinds of birds in all), flowers and fruit (pomegranates or apples on every other column). Preceding the first column is an illustration depicting a king seated on his throne, receiving a book from an angel. Beneath eight of the next columns are illustrations depicting scenes from the Book of Esther (most of the illustrations were inspired by a group of Esther scrolls decorated with copperplate engravings, made in Holland or Germany in the early 18th century): "Let them gather all the beautiful young virgins", King Ahasuerus seated on his throne, Haman leading Mordecai on his horse, a Purim festival, "The writing was in the name of King Ahasuerus and sealed with the king's ring", "On that night the king could not sleep; and he gave orders to bring the book of memorable deeds, the chronicles", "as Haman was falling on the couch where Esther was", the wedding of Esther and Ahasuerus. In the column containing the names of Haman's sons is an illustration depicting a ten-story gallows on which the ten sons are hung. Vellum height: 24 cm. Fair-good condition. Tears to the beginning of the first membrane, some reinforced with adhesive tape. Stains. Corrections in different ink in several places.

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Decorated Vellum Esther Scroll - Baghdad, 19th Century - Sassoon Family

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Description: Decorated Esther scroll, on vellum, scrolled on a silver handle. Baghdad, Iraq, mid-19th century. Ink and paint on vellum; etched and engraved silver. 3 vellum membranes. The text of the Book of Esther is written in 21 columns, between which are decorative stripes of stylized flowers. 19-21 rows per column. The scroll opens with three introductory columns, surrounded by frames with flowers and containing different inscriptions: The first column contains the blessings said before and after the reading of the scroll and: "Cursed be Haman, Blessed be Mordecai…". In the second column, in large ("rabbati") letters painted blue, is the inscription "Scroll of Esther the Queen and Mordecai the King". In the third column, in rabbati letters painted green and burgundy, against a vegetal background and inside a frame, is the inscription "There was a Jew in Susa the capital whose name was Mordecai", and, in the middle of the column - "Son of Jair, son of Shime'I, son of Kish". Henceforth, along the upper and lower borders, on the margins of all the membranes, the lineage of Mordecai, followed by the lineage of Haman, appears written in orange rabbati letters. The vellum is scrolled on an engraved silver handle, with bands decorated in vegetal patterns. Above the upper band is another, smaller band engraved with the name of the owner, R.D. Sassoon. The Feuchtwanger collection contains a similar scroll from 1848. The Stieglitz collection at the Israel Museum (Jerusalem) also contains a similar scroll, from 1854, apparently written and illustrated by Yitzhak Meir Chaim Moshe Gabai from Baghdad (the author of the 1854 scroll was identified by comparison with a manuscript of the Song of Songs that contained identical decorations, from the collection of Prof. Meir Benayahu). Vellum height: 10.5 cm. Handle length: 20 cm. Good overall condition. Some stains. Paint smears, mostly to lineage text. Inserted in cloth-covered cardboard box with labels inscribed with the name of the famous collector David Solomon Sassoon. Exhibited: Anglo-Jewish Historical Exhibition, Royal Albert Hall, London, 1887. See: 1. Catalogue of the Anglo-Jewish Historical Exhibition, Royal Albert Hall, London 1887, Compiled by Joseph Jacobs and Lucien Wolf, Illustrated by Frank Haes. London, 1888, item no. 2061 (photographed). 2. "Jewish Tradition in Art: The Feuchtwanger Collection of Judaica" by Dr. Isaiah Shachar (Israel Museum, 1971), item 417. 3. "The Stieglitz Collection: Masterpieces of Jewish Art", Chaya Benjamin (Israel Museum, 1987), item 191. Provenance: Sassoon family collection.

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Miniature Esther Scroll with an Exquisite Filigree-Silver Handle - Turkey, 19th Century

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Description: Esther scroll, scrolled on a filigree-silver handle. Turkey, 19th century. Ink on vellum; silver, filigree, partly gilt; coral; velvet fabric; gold metal threads. 5 vellum membranes, 26 columns, 16 rows per column. Vellum scrolled on an exquisite handle whose height is thrice that of the scroll. The handle is made entirely of delicate filigree work, decorated with granulation and tiny silver diamond-shaped platelets and small flower decorations. Its top part is in the shape of a three-storied crown, above which is a cone topped by a coral. Partly gilt. A string for fastening at the beginning of the first membrane. Original cover made of blue velvet fabric, embroidered with gold metal threads and fastened with three buttons. Vellum height: 7 cm, handle height: 32 cm. Good overall condition. Break and bends to handle's bottom tip. Fabric cover: ca. 7X9 cm. Wear to velvet and some unraveling. See: Esther Juhasz, "Sephardi Jews in the Ottoman Empire" (Hebrew), Israel Museum, 1989, item 23, p. 83; plate 41, p. 209.

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Letter from the Cairo Geniza - Sent by Rabbi Shlomo Cohen of Alexandria to his Father Rabbi Yehuda Cohen in Fustat, 1148 - Unique Historical Documentation of Forced Conversion, Kiddush Hashem and Destruction of the North-African Jewish Communities During the Almohad Conquest

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Description: Letter from the Cairo geniza, by Rabbi Shlomo Cohen of Alexandria (Egypt), to his father Rabbi Yehuda who resided in Fustat (now a part of the 'Old Egypt' area in Cairo), Shvat 1148. Judeo-Arabic. Manuscript on paper; long narrow format. Complete letter (with damages to text), restored with a delicate net fabric and paper filling to margins. Complete letter with very significant content, dated in the letter itself. One of the most important letters removed from the Cairo Geniza containing a unique historical documentation of the conquest of the Almohad (al-Muwahhidun) movement in North Africa and in Southern Spain and of the ensuing destruction of the Jewish communities. The names of the addressee and the sender appear on verso of the letter [cutoff]: "… Our teacher and Rabbi Yehuda… grandson of the Geonim… His servant who prays to G-d on his behalf, Shlomo Cohen, Shalom" [the identity of the addressee, "Our teacher and Rabbi Yehuda" is unknown, however from the content of the letter it seems that he was a notable person and perhaps an important rabbinical figure. The letter begins with various verses followed by a long description of the writer's personal state and many details of his personal business and his joint business with his father. He writes of purchase and sale of merchandise, of debts and payments to various people, etc. Afterward, a long section appears beginning with the words: "As to your desire to know of the news in Maghreb, that whosoever heareth of it, his ears shall tingle". He then details the events which occurred at that time of the Almohad conquest of Maghreb cities relying on trustworthy updates ["I inform you of this, not from rumors but from someone who came and informed me"]. Among other things, he tells of the conquest of the city of Tlemcen by the forces of Abd al-Mu'min, a prominent member of Almohad movement, and of the murder of some Jews who lived there and coercion of others to convert (to Islam) ["and he will murder all those therein with the exceptions of those who were traitors and converted"]. He continues to recount the conquest of the city of Sijilmasa with the assistance of the residents who extradited the city into the hands of Al-Mu'min. He writes that before the invasion of the city, about 200 Jews escaped to El- Kasbah, Morocco including their own relatives. He adds that after the conquest of Sijilmasa, Al-Mumin tried to convince the Jews to convert to Islam for the duration of seven months, after which he murdered 150 Jews who refused to convert and the rest converted. He mentions that Rabbi Yosef ben Amram who was a Dayan in Sijilmasa was among those who converted and labels him "the leading traitor". Further he writes of "Maghreb communities who were entirely traitorous and no one from B?ja?a to Sijilmasa, retained his Jewish names. Some were killed and other changed their religion". The letter also details the various Almohad invasions and numbers of the dead [he invaded Fez and conquered it killing 100,000 people and in Marrakech he killed 120,000 people…]. This is a distinctive documentation of the destruction of Jewish North African communities in the 12th century, by a Jewish merchant of that time who wrote about the events as they were happening. After this long section, the writer returns to personal and commercial matters. In several places, he expresses his longing for his father and his hope to meet him. He also mentions a Jewish sage who was a disciple of R. Y. Migash and who left Sijilmasa for Egypt [Rabbi Y. Migash died seven years previously in 1141]. In the beginning of the 12th century, the Almohad Caliphate (al-Muwahhidun, "the Unifiers") movement was founded in North Africa by Ibn Tumart, a Muslim Berber who launched an open revolt against the ruling Almoravids and conquered Maghreb cities. Later, the Almohads also conquered the Al-Andalus territory in the Iberian Peninsula. The Almohad was an extreme Muslim movement that forcefully converted Jewish communities in each new city they conquered. In each city they invaded, the Almohad decreed upon the people to accept Islam or forfeit their lives. This decree led to the destruction of dozens of Jewish communities in North Africa and in Southern Spain. Many were murdered sanctifying G-d's name and thousands outwardly converted to Islam. The Ra'avad describes the destruction of the communities: "After the death of R. Yosef HaLevi (R. Y. Migash), came years of shmad to the Jewish people and they exiled from their homes, some to die, some to be killed by the sword, some died of hunger and some were taken into captivity… He decreed to singularly target the Jewish people and annihilate them until their name will be extinguished…". Rabbi Avraham Ibn Ezra wrote a lamentation on the destruction of these communities mentioning the names of those communities. Among them are Sijilmasa, Marrakech, Fez, Tlemcen, Meknes, Derah, etc. At the time this letter was written, the Rambam was about ten years old. Following the Almohad conquests, his father, Rabbi Maimon the Dayan was forced to flee his city of Cordova with his family. They wandered for ten years after which they attempted to settle in Fez but were forced to leave after five years again fleeing the Almohad. They then made their way to Eretz Israel and from there the Rambam eventually travelled to Egypt. Following these events and the fact that Jews were coerced into outwardly accepting the Islamic religion to save their lives, the Rambam wrote his famous Igeret HaShmad, in which he defends those Jews and fiercely attacks the anonymous sage who claimed that those anusim are considered by Jewish law as idol-worshipers and as heretics. This letter was purchased by the collector R. David Sassoon. The version in Judeo-Arabic was published in the book Ohel David (no. 713) and in other places. Some of the letter [the section related to the Almohad riots] was translated into Hebrew by R. Ya'akov Moshe Toledano, author of Ner HaMa'arav [this section was published in the Mekabtzi'el anthology, 37, pp. 651-652]. R. Toledano thinks that the writer of the letter is R. Shlomo Segan HaKohanim mentioned in Igeret Teiman by the Rambam, who journeyed from Egypt to Yemen. A handwritten notebook is enclosed with the letter, with the full transcription of the letter and its Hebrew translation with explanatory notes written by Prof. Yitzchak Yechezkel Yehuda for R. David Sassoon. Leaf, written on both sides. Length: 50 cm. Width: 18 cm. Fair condition. Stains and tears. Restored with transparent net fabric glued onto both sides of the letter and paper filling to margins. Bound. Provenance: Sassoon family collection. Ohel David - no. 713.

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Machzor for Yom Kippur, According to the Roman Rite - Vellum Manuscript - Italy, 15th Century

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Description: Vellum manuscript, Machzor according to the Roman rite - prayers, Selichot and piyyutim for Yom Kippur and for Aseret Yemei Teshuva. [Italy, 15th century]. Thick volume. Ink on vellum. Handsome scribal writing in semi-cursive Italian script, vowelized. With unvowelized instructions in semi-cursive script. Initials in square Italian script. The manuscript begins with the vidui (confession) for the individual Shacharit prayer and contains all the repetition of Shacharit (chazarat hashatz), the Torah reading and Haftarah, Musaf, Mincha, with its Torah reading and Haftarah, Ne'ilah and many piyyutim of Selichot for Yom Kippur and for Aseret Yemei Teshuva. Colophon on page 80b: "Completed the seder of Rosh Hashanah and of Yom Kippur…". On the following leaves are Selichot for Aseret Yemei Teshuva, Selichot for Yom Kippur eve, Selichot for Shacharit of Yom Kippur, Selichot for Shabbat and Yom Kippur, Selichot for Minchah of Yom Kippur and Selichot for Ne'ilah. On the bottom of page [112a] is a concluding colophon: "The Selichot of Yom Kippur are completed, praise to He who brings down and raises", followed by a few other piyyutim. The piyyutim are arranged according to the Roman rite. This manuscript slightly varies from the common arrangements in manuscripts and in print and from the description of Shadal in his composition "Mavo L'Machzor K'Minhag Bnei Rome" (Livorno, 1857). For the list of piyyutim and their place in the machzor, please see the Hebrew description. [116] vellum leaves. 26 cm. Most leaves are in good condition, several are in fair condition, stains and wear. Faded ink on several leaves. New leather binding.

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Manuscript - Sefer HaKitzin by the Ramban - Spain, 14/15th Century

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Description: Manuscript, "Sefer HaKitzin - By R. Moshe bar Nachman". [Spain? 14/15th century]. Ancient cursive Sephardi script [this script was already used at the end of the 13th century; possibly this manuscript was written at that time]. Complete manuscript, containing the entire composition, more commonly known as Sefer HaGe'ulah by the Ramban. Ownership inscriptions in Italian writing: "Ezra of Pano son of the late Yitzchak" [died in c. 1608. Torah scholar of Mantua and Venice, uncle and teacher of the Rama of Pano, possessed a large library of manuscripts, including important copies of the Ari's kabbalistic teachings]; "Shimshon Cohen Modon" [1679-1727, Italian sage, Rabbi in Mantua, author of "Kol Musar"]; "Heirs of R. Shmuel of Pano". Corrections, annotations and several long glosses, in Italian Hebrew script [by two writers]. In Sefer HaKitzin, or Sefer HaKetz, better known as Sefer HaGe'ulah, the Ramban writes about matters related to the Redemption and calculations of its coming. According to the Ramban's opinion in this composition, the prohibition of calculating the "end" is annulled in the generation which verges on the Redemption. He writes that the reason sages cursed those who calculate the "end of the days", is that they knew the length of its coming "and do not want it to be revealed lest this (belatedness) weaken their anticipation", but in our days it is not forbidden to calculate the Redemption. True to his belief, the Ramban attempted to determine the Redemption using several sources from the book of Daniel and he reached the conclusion that in the year of 1358, the Messiah son of Efraim will reveal himself and in 1402, the Messiah son of David will appear. [42] pages. Fair condition. Stains and wear, worming, dampstains and tears, some restored. Several leaves have tears or damages affecting text.

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***** WITHDRAWN FROM AUCTION *****

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Description: ***** WITHDRAWN FROM AUCTION *****Manuscript, anthology of medical composition, written by Rabbi Mordechai Finzi. Legnago (Italy), 1466. Complete manuscript. Wide-spaced charming handwriting, in ancient Italian Hebrew script. Composed of four medical compositions, all in Hebrew: · "Practica", by Maestro Pietro da Tossignano - Long composition about illnesses and medications. Written at the end of the composition: "The ninth article by Pietro da Tossignano …copied by R. Yosef disciple of the physicians". · "Sefer HaSamim", by Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon - the Rambam, about drugs and cures for poisoned wounds and snake bites. Hebrew translation by R. Moses ibn Tibbon. · "Ma'amar BeRefualt HaThorim" [Treatise on Hemorrhoids], by Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon - the Rambam. Hebrew translation by an unknown translator [possibly by R. Moses ibn Tibbon]. · "Leonfrankina Haktana", medical guidance for various issues [injuries and illnesses]. At the end of the Rambam's treatise on hemorrhoids is a colophon by the scribe, R. Mordechai Finzi: "I have completed to write this, I Mordechai Finzi, from a very flawed book, here in Legnago on the 28th of the month of January 1466". Original vellum binding, inscriptions and signatures of "ISH GER" - Avraham Yosef Shlomo Gratziano [Italian Torah scholar who lived in the 17th century. A well-known collector of books and manuscripts]. The copier, R. Mordechai Finzi was a 15th century Italian scholar. Very proficient in the wisdom of the Jewish calendar (constellations and New Moons), he wrote compositions on this subject. The calendars that he wrote were Hebrew incunabula printed before 1480 in the printing press of Avraham Konat. Manuscripts of the compositions that he wrote, translated and copied, exist in a number of libraries around the world. Apparently, besides the article on hemorrhoids [printed recently by Zisman Mountner: The Rambam, Medical Writings, Part 4, Musad HaRav Kook, Jerusalem 1965], the rest of the compositions were never printed. [98] leaves. High-quality paper. 22 cm. Good condition. Stains, worming in several places. Damages and tears to vellum binding.

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Quires of the First Printed Edition of the Talmud - Soncino, 1489

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Description: Quires (signatures) from Tractates Bava Kama and Bava Metziah, printed in Soncino, in 1489 by Gershom Soncino and David Pitzigton. The first printed edition of the Talmud. · 27 leaves of Tractate Bava Kama. Leaf 8 of Quire 12; Leaves 1-8 of Quire 13; Leaves 1-2, 4-8 of Quire 14; Leaves 1-6 of Quire 15; Leaf 8 of Quire 18; Leaves 1-4 of Quire 19. From the middle of Chapter Merubeh, Chapter HaChovel (lacking one leaf), and parts of Chapters HaGozel Etzim and HaGozel U'Ma'achil. [Leaves 77b-96b, and 116b until the end of the tractate, following the pagination used today], with the first page of Piskei Tosfot. · 10 leaves of Tractate Bava Metziah. Leaves 2-8 of Quire 5, and Leaves 1-3 of Quire 6. From the middle of Chapter Elu Metziot until the beginning of Chapter HaMafkid. [Leaves 27-35, according to the pagination used today]. Leaves from the first printing of the Talmud printed by the Soncino family are very scarce due to a number of reasons: a. This edition of the Talmud was printed clandestinely because the printers feared the Christian rulers, since the work was begun after the Popes decreed burning the Talmud in the 13th century (in 1239 and again in 1264). Therefore, the printing of entire Talmud was not completed by the Soncino family (see: R. N. N. Rabinowitz, the article about the printing of the Talmud, pp. 8-9). b. Many copies which were sold in Spain and Portugal were lost during the years of expulsion and persecution in 1492-1497. c. Many copies were burnt in 1553-1554 after Pope Paul IV of Italy decreed the burning the Talmud. (See: R. N. N. Rabinowitz, ibid. p. 15). d. Many copies were worn and lost due to their heavy use for Talmudic study. [This was the only copy of the Talmud printed for decades]. Most of the leaves which have survived until our days are worn and damaged and dozens of consecutive leaves found in reasonable condition such as these quires are very rare. This lot has close to 40 leaves of Tractates Bava Kama and Bava Metziah. These tractates were printed in Soncino, apparently by Gershom Soncino (Tractates Berachot and Betzah which preceded these were printed by his uncle Yehoshua Shlomo son of R. Yisrael Natan Soncino), in c. 1489. This edition was the first to incorporate the Tosfot as an integral part of the Talmud Daf (Leaf) together with Rashi’s commentary (as opposed to the Spanish printings which printed only Rashi’s commentary beside the text of the Talmud). In addition, this edition determined the type of Tosfot attached to each tractate for future generations (usually, Tosfot Rabbi Eliezer of Touques). On the other hand, the "tzurat hadaf" (the layout of the Talmud page) and pagination of this printing differs from the format used today. Today’s "tzurat hadaf" was set in the Bomberg edition which was printed after the Soncino edition. For further information about the choice of Tosfot determined for each tractate by the Soncino family see: Shem HaGedolim by the Chida, Ma'arechet Sefarim, Entry Tosafot of Sens). At the end of Tractate Bava Kama is a colophon for both Tractate Bava Kama and for Bava Metziah: "I have meticulously proofread these tractates, Bava Kama and Bava Metziah and know that they are very accurate, with the exception of a few places for which I had reservations and in that case, I used the books which were in front of me. Because I obligated myself to the buyers with an oath and fines that I would complete these tractate before Pesach, and due to bad events I tarried to complete them until the 14th (of Nissan). With deep sorrow and great toil, I did not have the time to list the places for which I was in doubt as I had done in the tractates I had printed in the past. But know that they are very very good and you will not find lacking except for the letter Bet exchanged for a Kaf (letters which look alike) and likewise. David son of R' Elazar HaLevi". [According to R. N. N. Rabinowitz, the proofreader is Rabbi David son of R. Eliezer HaLevi Pitzigton, a scholar who lived in Italy at the turn of the 16th century. On the margins of some leaves are ancient handwritten glosses, with corrections of the versions of the Talmud and of Rashi [the corrections appear in the following editions of the Talmud, but not in the printed version of this edition]. 2 items, [37] leaves. Approximately 31 cm. Varying condition among the leaves, overall fair condition (some leaves are in good condition). Stains, wear and tears. Some leaves have coarse tears affecting text. Ancient owner's inscriptions "Daniel", "Yitzchak Bibamiya" (?). The Soncino family, a Jewish family whose sons were among the first Hebrew printers, derived its name from the town of Soncino in Northern Italy in which the family settled and established its first printing press. There they began printing the Babylonian Talmud (simultaneously, several tractates were printed in Spain). The first tractate, Berachot, was printed in 1484. Due to the difficulties and troubles they encountered, they were forced to wander together with their printing tools and traversed various Italian cities. In each location, they set up their printing press and continued printing important Hebrew books. Provenance: Sassoon family collection. David Sassoon dated the printing to 1488. [According to the Bibliography of the Hebrew Book (Record no. 328506): Most of the bibliographers dated the printing of these tractates to 1489. Freidman dates these two tractates one year later - 1490].

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Babylonian Talmud - Tractate Eruvin - Venice, 1528 - Printed by Daniel Bomberg - Variant

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Description: Babylonian Talmud, Tractate Eruvin, "with Rashi and Tosfot commentaries and Piskei Tosfot and Perush HaMishnayot and Rabbeinu Asher". Venice, 1528. Second edition printed by Daniel Bomberg. This well-known edition became a common basis for all subsequent editions of the Talmud. It introduced the “tzurat hadaf” (the layout of the page), and the pagination still in use today. The first printing of this edition took place during 1520-1523, its editing based on extensive research of manuscripts. Afterward, due to great demand, Bomberg reprinted another edition in ca. 1528-1529. This edition contained variations according to the manuscripts or the editors' considerations. R. Refael Natan Neta Rabinowitz in his article on the printing of the Talmud (p. 46) especially notes Tractate Eruvin "which is very different from the version of 1521". He brings several examples of the variations and additions to the Talmud version and the division of the Rosh commentary to the passages and "many glosses of the Rosh which were not printed in the 1521 edition". Interestingly, part of the variations which Rabinowitz notes do indeed appear here and some of them [such as referrals to Tosfot inside the Talmud version by circular signs above the word] do not appear in this copy. Apparently, this is another variant of this printing. Inscriptions and signatures: "Shalom Lacham", "Yeshaya Sithon", "Avraham son of R. Ye'uda HaLevi", "Ezra Chaim [--] Douek HaCohen, and more. 131 leaves. 39 cm. Fair-good condition. Stains, worming, wear and tears to margins. Handsome new binding.

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Psalms - Leipzig, 1533 - First Hebrew Book Printed in Leipzig

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Description: [Psalterium Hebraicum] / Tehillim (Psalms). [Leipzig 1533]. Vowelized, with roots of words in the margins. At the end of the book is a colophon, stating that the book was published by Anton Margaritha. At the end of some other copies are four additional leaves - Hebrew translation of several verses from the Gospel of Matthew. The copy offered here was bound originally without these leaves, possibly due to the fact that it was intended for sale to Jews. [116] leaves, 14.5 cm. Good condition. Stains, many inscriptions. Contemporary binding with leather spine, damaged. The first Hebrew book printed in Leipzig. Not in NLI and to the best of our knowledge, has not been auctioned in the past. In the Bibliography of the Hebrew Book it is listed according to a copy in the library of the Schocken Institute. That copy is listed as having [80] leaves whereas the copy offered here has [116] leaves.

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Vayikra, Bamidbar and Devarim - With Translation into Three Languages - First Printing in Judeo-Persian - Constantinople, 1546 - Soncino Printing - Two Volumes

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Description: Chumash with Rashi commentary and with translation into three languages: Aramaic (Onkelos), Judeo-Arabic and Judeo-Persian. [Constantinople, 1546. Printed by Eliezer son of Gershom Soncino]. Two volumes. One volume of Vayikra, one volume of Bamidbar-Devarim. This is a complete copy of Vayikra, and Bamidbar and Devarim lack about 20 leaves apiece. The Judeo-Arabic translation is the Tafsir of R. Se'adya Gaon, and the Judeo-Persian translation was done by R. Ya'akov son of R. Yosef Tawas. The translations were arranged around the text of the Scriptures [flanking it and above], and the Rashi commentary was printed below. R. Moses Hamon the physician brought this edition to print. He was a rabbi and sage and a prominent leader of the Constantinople community in his times. R. Moses was among the Jews expelled from Spain (born in Spain, he was one year old at the expulsion) and his family settled in Turkey. His father, R. Yosef, was the physician of the Turkish Sultan and after his father's death, R. Moses succeeded him as the personal physician of Sultan Salim I, and afterward as the physician of Suleiman I (Suleiman the Magnificent). He accomplished much on behalf of the Jews and was also active in convincing the Sultan to protect the Jews from blood libels by regulating that each such libel must be presented before the King and not in a regular court (see the book Divrei Yosef by Rabbi Yosef HaSambri). He established a Beit Midrash in Constantinople headed by R. Joseph Taitazak. In 1534, Sultan Suleiman I conquered Tabriz the Persian capital. One year later, the Sultan's army also conquered Baghdad. On his travels to Persia, the Sultan was accompanied by his personal physician, Rabbi Moses Hamon (in the book Shevet Yehuda by Rabbi Shlomo Ibn Virga, the author's son cites a story which happened to the Persian Jews in the name of the "High and lofty officer R' Moshe Hamon"). In Baghdad, R. Moses Hamon found a manuscript with a Judeo-Persian translation of the Torah by a Persian sage R. Ya'akov son of R. Yosef Tawas and took it with him to Constantinople, and brought it to print in this edition. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time that the Persian language is printed in Hebrew letters (Judeo-Persian), and the first time that a Persian translation of the Torah has been printed. Two volumes. Approximately 28 cm. Vol. 1: Vayikra: [60] leaves. Fair condition. The inner margins of the leaves are restored by gluing paper throughout the book, sometimes affecting text. Five leaves have large open tears significantly affecting the text. Approximately, 20 leaves have small tears restored with paper filling, some with handwritten replacements of lacking text. Stains and dampstains. Vol. 2: Bamidbar: [68] leaves. Lacking 18 leaves. [11] leaves were replaced in Yemenite handwriting. Fair condition. Stains. Small tears to the margins of many leaves. Restored tears affecting text in about 10 leaves. Devarim: [53] leaves. Lacking 20 leaves. Fair condition. Stains, dampstains. Wear. About 10 leaves with glued tears and apparent, sometimes significant lack of text. Other leaves have small restorations. Provenance: Sassoon family collection.

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Zevach Pesach - Cremona, 1557

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Description: Zevach Pesach, Passover Haggadah with the commentary of Rabbi Yitzchak Abarbanel. Cremona, [1557]. Printed by Vincenzo Conti. On the title page is an inscription written on Erev Pesach: "Eliezer son or R. Yonah… I have written this on Sunday, the 13th of Nissan 1709". On the last leaf is another inscription: "I have studied this book on Monday Rosh Chodesh Kislev 1631". 64 leaves. Approximately 19 cm. Good condition. Stains, fungus traces [leaves were cleaned]. Several restored tears. Stamp. Handsome new leather binding. Ya'ari 17; Otzar HaHaggadot 19.

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Haggadah - Zevach Pesach - Riva di Trento, 1561

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Description: Passover Haggadah, "With the commentary of Don Isaac Abravanel" - Zevach Pesach. Riva di Trento, 1561. The publisher, R. Jacob Marcaria added his own commentary at the beginning of the Haggadah. [34] leaves. 29 cm. Good condition. Stains, food and wine stains. Restored margins of title page, without affecting text. Restored tears to margins of other leaves. Restored light worming to title page. Old damaged leather binding. Ya'ari 19; Otzar HaHaggadot 22.

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Passover Haggadah - Ma'ale Beit Chorin - With Map of Eretz Israel - Amsterdam, 1781

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Description: Passover Haggadah - Ma'aleh Beit Chorin, "According to Ashkenazi and Sephardi tradition", with commentaries of the Alshich, Gevurot Hashem by the Maharal and Ollelot Efraim by Rabbi Shalom Efraim of Luntschitz [author of Kli Yakar]. Amsterdam, [1781]. Proops Press. First edition of the Haggadah with this title. Half-title page with a copperplate illustration. Copperplate illustrations according to the 1795 Amsterdam edition. At the end of the Haggadah is a large [folded] plate with a map of Eretz Israel. Ownership inscription on title page. [2], 52 leaves + folded plate (map). Approximately 25 cm. Good-fair condition. Stains, food stains. Detached signatures. Tear of about 10 cm on margins of folded map, without lack. Contemporary leather binding with gilt decorations. Wear, worming and damages to binding; most of the spine is missing. Ya'ari 199; Otzar HaHaggadot 300.

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Passover Haggadah with Illustrations - Bombay, India, 1846 - First Bene Israel Haggadah

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Description: Haggadah, with Marathi translation and illustrations. Bombay (India), [1846]. Lithograph of manuscript. Text and translation on facing pages. Original illustrations. Illustrated title page, with figures of Moshe and Aharon [inspired by the title page of the 1712 Amsterdam Haggadah]. Illustrations of the simanim of the Seder and the Seder ritual dish [inspired by the Livorno Haggadah illustrations]. The first Haggadah printed according to the custom of the Bene Israel Jews in India. [5], 35 [should be 36] leaves. 24 cm. Good-fair condition. Stains. Dampstains. New binding. Ya'ari Haggadot 656; Otzar HaHaggadot 895. Ya'ari, The Hebrew Printing in the East, Bombay, no. 92. Provenance: Sassoon family collection.

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Arvit and Sefirat HaOmer Prayers According to Kabbalah - Brno, 1763 - Unknown Miniature Edition

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Description: "Sefirat HaOmer According to Kabbalah and Ma'ariv in its Time". Brno (Br?nn, Czechoslovakia), 1763. Printed by the widow Francesca Neumann. Miniature edition, complete copy in good condition, with contemporary leather binding. At the beginning of the book is the Ma'ariv prayer, unvowelized, followed by the Sefirat HaOmer, including prayers recited before counting the Omer, followed by a separate page for each day of the Omer with Kabbalistic kavanot. This edition is unknown and is not listed in the Bibliography of the Hebrew Book and in the Vinograd-Rosenfeld records. To the best of our knowledge, this is a Unicum - a single copy, which does not exist in any library in the world. [47] leaves. 8 cm. Good condition. Stains. First leaf has cellotape repairs. Contemporary leather binding with minor damages.

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The Form of Prayers According to the Custom of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews - Siddur Siftei Tsaddikim - Philadelphia, 1837 - Complete Handsome Set with Original Bindings - First Complete Machzor Printed in America

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Description: Siddur Siftei Tsaddikim (Hebrew) / The Form of Prayers according to the custom of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews, edited and published by Isaac Leeser. Complete set in six volumes. Philadelphia, [1837-1838]. Printed by Haswell, Barrington, and Haswell. The first complete machzor printed in America. Hebrew and English on facing pages, parallel pagination. Isaac Leeser (1806-1868), one of the first leaders of American Jewry, head of the Jewish community of Philadelphia, cantor, philosopher and author of many sermons and essays. He was very active in founding Jewish institutions and in bequeathing Jewish religion and history. Among other activities, he translated Jewish books into English. One of his more renowned translations is this machzor, which is the first complete machzor printed in America, including festival prayers. Publishing this machzor was a complex project. Leeser based his translation on a prayer book printed in London but he added and improved upon the original and also revised the Hebrew text. Afterward, he ordered new Hebrew types from Europe but did not find printers who were familiar with Hebrew and had to teach two Christian printers the Holy Tongue to prepare them for the printing. In spite of all the difficulties involved, the machzorim were published in a total of 13 months. Leeser marketed his prayer book both to audiences in America and the British Empire and therefore included prayers on behalf of a monarch and a republican government. Six volumes. Vol. 1: "Part one - Prayers for the whole year" [siddur]. VII, 216, 216 pages. Bound at the end of the volume are two leaves of title pages of Part 6 [for fast days] (which appear again at the beginning of this part). Vol. 2: "Part 2 - prayers for Rosh Hashana". 120, 121 page, 121 page. Vol. 3: "Part 3 - Prayers for Yom Kippur". [4], 245, 246, [1], 3 pages. Vol. 4: "Part 4 - Prayers for the Festival of Succot". 175, 176, [1] pages. Vol. 5: "Part 5 - Prayers for Pesach and for Shavuot". 182, 182 pages. Vol. 6 - Prayers for Fast Days". [4], 184, 186, [4], 12 pages. 21.5 cm. Good-very good condition. Stains, slight wear to several leaves. Contemporary leather bindings [light-colored], with rubbing and minor damage. Goldman 36; Singerman 630.

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LaYesharim Tehilla, by the Ramchal - Amsterdam, 1743 - First Edition Printed by the Author in Only 50 Copies - A Handsome Wide-margined Copy - Handwritten Correction

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Description: LaYesharim Tehilla, a morality play by Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto, the Ramchal. [Amsterdam], [1743]. Printed by the orphans of Shlomo Katz Proops. Additional leaf preceding title page [with title in red ink], followed by the title page [partially in red ink]. Written on the title page: "Poem for the wedding day of the wise R. Ya'akov de Chaves with the modest praiseworthy bride Ms. Rachel de Vega Enriques". LaYesharim Tehilla is one of three plays written by the Ramchal (the other two are Ma'ase Shimshon and Migdal Oz) and is considered one of his most important works. The heroine of the play is Tehilla (Praise), daughter of Hamon (Multitude), who is designated to wed Yosher (Rectitude), son of Emet (Truth), but due to the conquest of the city by the army of "Mevucha" (Confusion), erroneously the designated groom Yosher was exchanged with Rahav (Pride). With a masterly use of language, the work addresses issues of ethics and philosophy. In his introduction to the play, the Ramchal writes: "There is nothing like a parable to reveal truth and to teach… to bring the hidden into the light, to open unseeing eyes...". The Ramchal printed only 50 copies of this work in celebration of the marriage of his friend R. Ya'akov de Chaves, to give to the bride and groom and to their relatives. In his introduction to the second edition (Berlin, 1780), the publisher R. Shlomo Dubna writes: "… This book was printed by the author himself in Amsterdam, in 1743 and he only printed 50 copies that were all brought to the libraries of Sephardi wealthy individuals in Amsterdam. Therefore, he who seeks the book cannot find it unless he pays a large sum, therefore I have reprinted it". Due to the popularity of the composition, it has been printed many times. This edition of LaYesharim Tehilla has a particularly high bibliophilic value. Printed on high-quality paper with very wide margins, it is one of the greatest achievements of 18th century Hebrew printing in Amsterdam. On page [29b], words which were omitted are added by hand in square vowelized script. This correction does not appear in other copies which we inspected but they were printed in the following editions [with a slight variation]. Possibly, the correction is in the handwriting of the author himself. [42] leaves. 23X30 cm. Especially wide margins. Good condition. Some leaves have stains. Two small holes on leaves [19] and [20]. Several tiny tears to margins. New binding, with parts of the original binding.

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Three Books Printed in Basel, 1599-1600 - With Dedication Handwritten and Signed by the Publisher and Author Rabbi Eliyahu

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Description: Volume containing three books printed in Basel by the renowned Kabbalist Rabbi Eliyahu "Ba'al Shem" Luantz: Sha'arei Dura, Amudei Shlomo and Rinat Dodim. On the title page of Rinat Dodim is a long interesting inscription handwritten and signed by the author, Rabbi Eliyahu "Ba'al Shem" of Worms. · Sefer HaShe'arim, Sha'arei Dura with the commentary of the Maharshal Rabbi Shlomo Luria. Basel, [1599]. Printed by Konrad Waldkirch. At the beginning of the book is an introduction by the publisher and proofreader, Rabbi "Eliyahu son of R. Moshe Luantz of Frankfurt am Main". He writes that this edition is a Mahadura-Batra of the Maharshal's work, with novellae on the laws of Nidah appended by the publisher, R. Eliyahu Ba'al Shem who writes in his introduction that he added a few of his own novellae. · Amudei Shlomo, Maharshal commentary on the Sefer Mitzvot Gadol [S'mag]. Basel [1599-1600]. Printed by Konrad Waldkirch. Separate title pages for Part 1 (Mitzvot Lo Ta'aseh) and Part 2 (Mitzvot Aseh). Introduction of the publisher Rabbi "Eliyahu son of R. Moshe Luantz of Frankfurt am Main". · Rinat Dodim. Shir Hashirim with the commentary of R. Eliyahu Luantz. Basel, [1600]. Printed by Konrad Waldkirch. On the title page is a (slightly cutoff) dedication handwritten and signed by the author, "Eliyahu son… Moshe", to his relative R. Yechiel Luria requesting that he read his book and that he should not be angered by errors. R. Eliyahu Luantz, Rabbi of Worms (1464-1531) was a prominent rabbi and posek in his times. Close disciple of the Maharal of Prague and friend of the Tosfot Yom Tov. Born in Frankfurt to R. Moshe (son of R. Yoselman, the renowned leader and lobbyist on behalf of German Jewry, descendant of the Luria family, the family name evolving to Lu'ash or Lu'ansh/Lu'antz=Luria Ashkenazi. In his writings, R. Eliyahu Luantz mentions his relatives, the Maharshal and the Arizal). During 1599-1600, he weathered a period of exile in the city of Basel at which time he published several books. Afterward, he moved to Worms, in which he held the positions of head of Yeshiva and an orator. Later, he served as Rabbi of Hanau, Fulda, Friedberg and Mainz, and after that returned to the position of Rabbi and Av Beit Din of Worms and was reappointed head the yeshiva. He became known around the world as Rabbi Eliyahu "Ba'al Shem" due to his study of Kabbalah and his practice of writing amulets using his knowledge of practical kabbalah [some wrote that he is the same "Rabbi Eliyahu Ba'al Shem" referred to by his grandson the Chacham Zvi in his responsa (Siman 93) as the creator of the Golem from dust according to Sefer HaYetzira, but presumably, the name of R. Eliyahu Luantz was confused with the name of R. Eliyahu Ba'al Shem of Chelm, the true creator of the Golem]. One of his more well-known disciples is Rabbi Yoel, the Ba'al Shem of Zamo??, an illustrious hidden tsaddik and kabbalist (one of the students of his students was R. Yisrael Ba'al Shem Tov of Medzhibozh, father of the Chassidic movement). R. Yechiel Luria, to whom R. Eliyahu dedicated the book, may possibly be R. Yechiel Luria son of the Maharshal [Rabbi of Brisk and head of the Lublin Yeshiva]. This may be the reason R. Eliyahu apologizes and requests that the errors in printing the writings of the Maharshal should not anger the recipient of his book. [The mistakes were the fault of non-Jewish printers, as written in several places in these books by R. Eliyahu]. In the book L'Korot HaYehudim B'Lublin (p. 47), a tombstone from 1594 is attributed to R. Luria and in the book Dor Dor V'Dorshav (p. 62), Rabbi Y. Lowenstein writes that R. Yechiel the son of the Maharshal died in 1596. This dedication is from the year 1600 [at the earliest] and his name is mentioned with an honorific used when naming a live person. Perhaps, R. Yechiel Luria whose death is recorded in both books is not R. Yechiel Luria son of the Maharshal [this name was common in the Luria family]. Alternatively, the recipient of the book, R. Yechiel Luria, may be another man from the Maharshal's family who carries this name [such as a grandson or nephew]. This R. Yechiel Luria was connected to the printing of the books of the Maharshal [in his work Michlal Yofi on Kohelet, Chapter 12, R. Eliyahu Luantz cites an interesting tradition "which I heard from my saintly relative R. Yechiel Luria of Safed, who once came here from Worms"]. One volume which contains the three books: 97, [1] leaves; [1], 2-115 leaves; [1 blank leaf]; [1], 49 leaves; [1], 29 leaves (lacking last page of Rinat Dodim, originally: [1], 30 leaves). 18.5 cm. Good-fair condition. Wear and stains, detached leaves. Open tears to the corners of several leaves. Ancient, worn and torn binding. Ancient signatures and ownership inscriptions: "Mordechai son of Shmuel of Zillisheim "; "--- of Furth". Penciled ownership inscriptions on the front free endpaper that the book belongs to Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak Weinberger, Rabbi of Kleinwardein.

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Arba'a Turim - Cremona, 1558 - Copy of Rabbi David son of Rabbi Eliyahu Ba'al Shem of Worms, and of Rabbi Nathan Adler of Frankfurt - With Glosses Handwritten by Rabbi Eliyahu Ba'al Shem

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Description: Arba'a Turim, by Rabbi Jacob ben Asher. Four parts: Orach Chaim, Yoreh De'ah, Even HaEzer and Choshen Mishpat. Cremona, 1558. Printed by Vincenzo Conti. On the title page is an early handwritten ownership inscription of R. David son of R. Eliyahu Luantz of Worms: "G-d was gracious to me and gave me also this, David son of... R. Eliyahu Luantz of Worms". On the flyleaf is an ownership inscription that the book "Belongs to …R. Nathan son of R. Shimon Adler Katz" [R. Nathan Adler of Frankfurt]. On the sheets are about ten short glosses in early Ashkenazi script [16th/17th century], of rulings and customs, clearly written by a posek. Apparently these glosses are handwritten by R. Eliyahu Luantz, the "Ba'al Shem", Rabbi of Worms as evident from comparison to his handwriting; see previous item). The kabbalist Rabbi Eliyahu Luantz (1664-1731), disciple of the Maharal of Prague was Rabbi and head of the yeshiva in Worms. Earlier, he had served in the rabbinate of Hanau, Fulda, Friedberg and Mainz. He became renowned as R. Eliyahu Ba'al Shem for his study of kabbalah and his writing of amulets according to practical kabbalah. One of his celebrated disciples was R. Yoel Ba'al Shem of Zamo??, a leading kabbalist and hidden tsaddik, who was the teacher of the teacher of Rabbi Yisrael Ba'al Shem Tov of Medzhibozh, father of the Chassidic movement. R. Nathan HaCohen Adler (1741-1800) was born in Frankfurt am Main to R. Ya'akov Shimon Adler. He was an outstanding Torah scholar and had vast knowledge of kabbalah. He headed the yeshiva he established in his home in Frankfurt and was the close teacher of R. Moshe Sofer, author of the Chatam Sofer who mentions his teacher frequently in his halachic and Kabbalistic books referring to him as "My close teacher, the famed pious Torah genius the great 'eagle'" ["eagle" is a poetic phrase alluding to the meaning of the name Adler], "My teacher, the pious Cohen", etc. Rabbi Adler was pursued by his fellow Frankfurt populace causing him great suffering. They even prohibited him to establish a minyan in his Beit Midrash which was conducted according to his special Kabbalistic customs. For a while, he served as Rabbi of Boskovice but afterwards he returned to his home and his Beit Midrash in Frankfurt. [1 blank], 117 leaves; [1 blank]; 91 leaves; [1 blank], 54 leaves [a signature of 5 blank leaves was bound originally between leaves 55-59]; 139 leaves [leaves 133-139 are lacking and replaced with facsimiles]. Total of 12 missing leaves, 5 at the end of Even HaEzer and 7 at the end of Choshen Mishpat. 30 cm. Good-fair condition. Some leaves with open tears, restored with paper and facsimile. Stains, restored wear damages. New elaborate leather binding.

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Tavnit Hechal - Amsterdam, 1650 - Signature of Rabbi Shalom Mizrachi Sharabi - The Rashash

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Description: Tavnit Hechal, on the building of the Beit HaMikdash and its utensils, by Rabbi Ya'akov Judah Aryeh Leon Templo. Amsterdam, [1650]. Printed by Yehuda ben Mordechai and Shmuel ben Moshe HaLevi. Printed at the beginning of the book are poems by R. Shaul Mortira, R. Yitzchak Abuhav, R. Shmuel son of Avraham HaRofeh, R. Aharon Tzarfati and the author.On the title page is a signature in Sephardic script: "Shalom Mizrachi Sharabi". On leaf 4 [should be 3] and on leaf 5 are more signatures of only his first name: "Shalom". These are signatures of the celebrated kabbalist - the Rashash. Rabbi Shalom Mizrachi Sharabi, the Rashash (1720-1777) was born in Sharab, Yemen and lived in Sana’a. From his youth, he was proficient in Torah and kabbalistic knowledge and was a modest hidden tsaddik. He prevailed in a great trial he encountered and vowed to move to Jerusalem. He left Yemen and sailed to Bombay, India and from there to Baghdad where he resided for a number of years. Afterward, he traveled to Damascus and thereafter moved to Jerusalem. Upon reaching Jerusalem, he worked as a servant in the house of R. Gedaliah Chayun, head of the Kabbalist Beit El Yeshiva, concealing his true stature. He would serve the yeshiva sages and quietly listen to their study. When they encountered questions for which they did not find answers, R. Sharabi would secretly write the response and place it in the Beit HaMidrash. After R. Gedaliah Chayun discovered this, he realized the wisdom and magnitude of R. Sharabi's knowledge and gave him the hand of his daughter Chana. In 1752, after the death of R. Gedaliah, he was appointed his successor as head of the Beit El Yeshiva of kabbalists and Chassidim. After this appointment, he established a holy group of kabbalists, called the Ahavat Shalom society. The kabbalists joined one another with "engagement bills", in which they accepted upon themselves manners of conduct, regulations and mutual responsibility. The Chida, R. Yom Tov Algazi, R. Gershon of Kuty [brother-in-law of the Ba'al Shem Tov] were among the disciples who joined this select holy group. His disciple the Chida writes: "One holy person in our times, an amazing kabbalist, knows practically the entire Etz Chaim by heart... and with his great knowledge and wisdom, he arranged the kavanot of the Arizal in their proper form. He wrote a large work named Rechovot HaNahar to explain and clarify the Hakdamot. He had all the Arizal's kavanot… as written by the Arizal in Sha'ar Ru'ach HaKodesh" (Shem HaGedolim, Ma'arechet Gedolim, Ot Shin). Among his works is a siddur with kavanot, known as the Siddur HaRashash which contains kabbalistic secrets and kavanot of prayer according to the Arizal. From the time it was written, it has become the primary source for kabbalistic kavanot of prayer. 38 leaves. 19 cm. Good condition. Stains. Worming. Two tears to title page, one restored [slightly affecting the title page frame]. New binding. Provenance: Sassoon family collection.

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Chiddushei HaRitva - Prague, 1735 - Copy of Rabbi Yehonatan Eybeschutz

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Description: Ritva novellae on Tractate Chulin. Prague, [1735]. Printed by the grandsons of Moshe Katz. First edition of the Chiddushei HaRitva on Tractate Chulin. On the front flyleaf are many ownership inscriptions, including a German inscription: "This book belongs to Mr. Jonas Nathan Eybeschutz, chief preacher and chief rabbi of the Jewish communities in Prague as well as in Metz in Lothringen at that time in Prague Anno 1741 the 10th of June 1741". Next to this inscription is another inscription in Hebrew by a different writer: "I was very… when I saw that this book belonged to…Rabbi Yonatan Eybeschutz author of Urim V'Tumim, Kreiti U'Pleiti, Tiferet Yehonatan, Bnei Ahuva, Ye'arot D'vash, Ahavat Yonatan and other books which have not yet been printed". On the verso of the flyleaf is a note of receiving the book from R. [Natan] Neta son of R. Yehonatan Eybeschutz signed by "Yitzchak Itzik Netir". [R. Yitzchak Itzik son of R. Hertz Netir of Butzweiler - a Dayan in Metz in 1765, see enclosed material]. On the title page is an undeciphered signature: "I have purchased this from Rabbi G.[?]…Zalman…". Rabbi Yehonatan Eybeschutz (1690-1764) was a renowned Torah scholar, posek, kabbalist and head of yeshiva in his days. Orphaned from his father, R. Natan Neta who was Rabbi of the city of Eybeschutz, the young child Yehonatan, already known as an outstanding genius, was sent to Prost?jov to the home of R. Meir Eisenstadt, author of Panim Me'irot, who raised him as son and disciple [R. Yehonatan wrote about him "The Torah scholar renowned for his Torah knowledge and for his fear of Heaven, my teacher in my youth…", Ya'arot D'vash Part 1 Drush 4]. At 14, he wed the daughter of R. Moshe Yitzchak Shapira Rabbi of Mlad? Boleslav (Bumsla), resided there for two years teaching in his father-in-law's yeshiva and thereafter moved to Hamburg studying Torah with the rabbi of the city R. Yechezkel Katzenellenbogen, author of Knesset Yechezkel. In 1714, at the age of 19 [!], he was summoned by the Prague community, (at that time the central Jewish community in Bohemia) to serve as orator. His sermons greatly impressed his audience and shortly after, he was appointed head of the Prague yeshiva and taught his disciples with his special method of Torah in-depth study (pilpul). At that time, he also joined the Prague Beit Din and the Jews of Prague considered him second only to R. David Oppenheim who was the Chief Rabbi of the city. Due to his exceptional wisdom, the city officials and governors were fond of him and with his pleasant manners he succeeded in influencing them to ease the harsh attitude and decrees placed upon the Jews. He cleverly and ingeniously debated with gentile scholars on tenets of the Jewish religion and Talmudic wisdom [In the introduction to his book Kreiti U'Pleiti, he mentions "which I have written and debated with Christian scholars and officials to eliminate Christian insults"]. He used his connections to help him print the Talmud, since at that time it was still prohibited to print the Talmud. After receiving approval, he printed Tractate Berachot with several omissions of Aggadah (printed under the name Hilchot Berachot). He had contact with leading medical experts and in his books he cites things which he proved to his friends, leading physicians in Halle and in Prague on the topics of terefot and nidah. In 1741, he was chosen as Rabbi of the city of Metz, France, succeeding R. Ya'akov Yehoshua Falk, author of Pnei Yehoshua (who moved to Frankfurt am Main to serve as Rabbi and Av Beit Din). That same year, Prague was seized by France during the War of the Austrian Succession. In the introduction to Kreiti V'Pleiti he writes about those times: "G-d caused me to arise and leave Prague to the large city of scholars…Metz, with compassion he took me out before G-d's anger erupted with the bad things which took place in the Prague community…". During the war, the Austrians accused Rabbi Yehonatan of collaborating with the French and they confiscated all his property which he left in the city of Prague [possibly, the German inscription on this book was written at the time his property was confiscated in Prague]. He served in the Metz rabbinate for about nine years until 1750 and relocated to serve in the rabbinate of Altona, Hamburg and Wandsbek succeeding R. Yechezkel Katzenellenbogen, author of Knesset Yechezkel. (This was the leading position of the Ashkenazi communities). At that time, R. Ya'akov Emden lived in Altona and he suspected R. Yehonatan to have Sabbatean beliefs, which developed into a fierce and bitter strife. R. Yehonatan who was one of the cleverest and astute Torah scholars in his days headed a yeshiva gedolah most of his life, first in Prague and later in Metz and Altona. Thousands of disciples studied in his yeshiva and many rabbis in his generation were his disciples or were taught by his disciples. Numerous books with his teachings were published. Besides the book Kreiti U'Pleiti on Yoreh De'ah printed in his lifetime in Altona in 1763, more of his works were printed after his death by his descendants and his disciples: Tiferet Yisrael on the laws of nidah (Karlsruhe, 1766); 613 mitzvot in rhyme (Prague, 1765); Urim V'Tumim on the Shulchan Aruch Choshen Mishpat (Karlsruhe, 1775); Ye'arot D'vash homilies (Karlsruhe, 1779) and many more works on the Rambam and the Shulchan Aruch, Talmudic novellae, commentaries and homilies on the Torah and on the Passover Haggadah, etc. 27 leaves. 33 cm. Printed on bluish paper. Fair condition. Stains. Worming. Worn and damaged binding.

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Halachot Ketanot - Venice 1704 - Dedication in the Handwriting of the Publisher and Author Rabbi Moshe Hagiz - Signatures of Rabbi Elazar Fleckeles

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Description: Halachot Ketanot, brief responsa on various topics, Parts 1-2. Includes Kuntress Gittin, by Rabbi Ya’akov Hagiz. Printed by his son Rabbi Moshe Hagiz. Venice, [1704]. First edition, contains printed glosses and additions by Rabbi Moshe Hagiz, signed "Hameniach" [acronym of Hatzair Moshe Ben Ya'akov Hagiz]. Printed between Part 1 and Part 2 are halachic responsa named Leket HaKemach [HaKemach - acronym of the name of the writer "Hakatan Moshe Hagiz"]. Three signatures in the handwriting of the celebrated Rabbi "Elazar Fleckeles" Ra'avad of Prague. On the flyleaf is a dedication in the handwriting of the publisher and author, R. Moshe Hagiz. On the title page is the signature of R. "Shimshon Heidnum of Frankfurt am Main" [apparently the father or relative of the Raveh, R. Wolf son of R. Shimshon Heidenheim of Frankfurt am Main]. On the back flyleaf are ownership inscriptions in pencil from 1834 that the book belongs to R. Leib Ostreich Ravad of O.Y. [Oben Yashan?], in the handwriting of his son "Chaim Ostreich". R. Elazar Fleckeles (1754-1826), a prominent Torah scholar and leading disciple of the Nodah b'Yehuda, served as Rabbi of Goitein (Kojet?n) during 1779-1783 and in 1783 was appointed Dayan and Ra'avad of Prague. Renowned for his 3-volume book Teshuva MeAhava and for other works. The distinguished Torah scholar Moshe Hagiz (born in 1672, died c. 1750-1760), an outstanding Torah prodigy proficient in Halacha and Kabbalah was a leading Sephardi sage in Jerusalem and later in Ashkenazi countries. Born in Jerusalem in 1672, son of Rabbi Ya’akov Hagiz author of Halachot Ketanot. Orphaned in his childhood, he was raised in the home of his illustrious grandfather, Rabbi Moshe Galanti "HaRav HaMagen" who was the head of the Jerusalem rabbis. The Maharam Hagiz was a disciple of the leading Sephardi sages of Jerusalem and of his celebrated brother-in-law Rabbi Moshe Ibn Chaviv [son-in-law of Rabbi Ya’akov Hagiz]. In 1694, after the death of his grandfather the Maharam Galanti, he left Eretz Israel as an emissary to Egypt and to the Diaspora. His wanderings lasted for 40 years and took him to European countries. During this period he resided in Livorno, Venice, Amsterdam, London, Berlin, Emden and Hamburg. In the course of those years, he became used to writing in Ashkenazi script [primarily due to his occupation with printing his books in Amsterdam and in Ashkenazi countries, and to his correspondence with leading European rabbis]. His Ashkenazi script in this dedication is especially interesting since the origin of the writer is clearly discernable and it contains many motifs stemming from the Sephardi writing to which the writer was accustomed in his youth. The Maharam Hagiz was involved in rabbinical issues in Ashkenazi countries and many important rabbis valued his opinion in Halachic and public matters. He is known for his unswerving opposition to Sabbatean follower Nechemya Hayun from Amsterdam in conjunction with the Chacham Zvi and the Ya’avetz which later compelled him to move to Germany, where he remained for over 20 years. He authored many books on Halacha, Mussar and Kabbalah (also polemic material opposing Sabbatean thought and the writings of Nechemya Hayun). His Torah teachings also appear in the many books he printed containing the teachings of his father, his grandfathers and teachers, to which he added his own additions, glosses and introductions, signing "Amar HaMeniach". This is such a book, the Halachot Ketanot responsa by his father, the Mahari Hagiz, printed in Venice in 1704 [see article by M. Benayahu: Books written by R. Moshe Hagiz and books he published, Elei Sefer, Vol. 2, 1976, pp. 154-160]. In 1738, he returned to Eretz Israel and resided in Sidon and in Safed. Various contradictory opinions account for the year of his death and the location of his gravesite. The Chida in Shem HaGedolim writes that he arrived in Sidon in 1738 and died in Safed in 1760, nearing the age of 90. (See: Shem HaGedolim, Ma’arechet Gedolim, Ot 40, 123). According to a different version, he died around 1750. According to the opinion of Luntz (Yerushalayim, Year 1, 1882, pp. 119-120), he left Safed for Beirut to recover from an illness, died there and was buried in Sidon. [4], 71, [9] leaves. 25.5 cm. Good condition. Stains and minor wear. Old binding.

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Me'irat Einayim - Vilna, 1839 / Edut L'Yisrael - Pressburg, 1839 - Copy of the Ktav Sofer, with his Signature

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Description: Me'irat Einayim, about inspection of animals’ lungs (after shechita), by R. Mordechai Ze'ev Segal Ettinger and his brother-in-law R. Yosef Shaul Nathanson. Vilna, 1839. Bound with: Edut L'Yisrael - Simla Shlishit, novellae on Tractate Makot, by Rabbi Binyamin Ze'ev Katz (Kohen Tzedek) Rappaport. Pressburg, 1839. The two books were bound together originally. Copy of R. Avraham Shmuel Binyamin Sofer, the author of Ktav sofer (son of the Chatam Sofer). Signed by him at the top of the first title page. Under his signature is the stamp of his son Rabbi Moshe Sofer. Rabbi Akiva Eger, grandfather of the Ktav Sofer wrote one of the approbations on Me'irat Einayim. His father, the Chatam Sofer, wrote an approbation for Edut L'Yisrael. R. Avraham Shmuel Binyamin Sofer (1815-1871), eldest son of the Chatam Sofer and his successor in the Pressburg rabbinate and as head of the Pressburg Yeshiva. Eminent Torah scholar, his disciples were leading rabbis in Hungary and its region. His works of responsa, Talmudic and Torah novellae were titled Ktav Sofer. Before his birth, his illustrious father, author of the Chatam Sofer foresaw that the soul of a tsaddik was to descend to the world and indeed, from his youth his holiness and devotion to Torah were evident. At the young age of 17-18, he exchanged halachic correspondence with his father's leading disciples. At the beginning, he concealed the tremendous diligence and proficiency of his vast Torah knowledge from his father, but with time, his father discerned his Torah stature and designated him as his successor in delivering discourses in the yeshiva and in halachic responsa to various rabbis throughout the world. His illustrious father guided him down the path to greatness in knowledge of revealed and hidden Torah and sent him Kabbalistic books to peruse. After his father's death in 1839, he succeeded his father as rabbi and head of yeshiva at the young age of 24 and was included in the sphere of the foremost Torah leaders of his times. He headed the rabbis who fought against the Reform movement and gave instructions to separate Hungarian communities into separate Orthodox entities. His halachic authority was widely accepted even by leading Torah scholars of his times. The Pressburg Yeshiva which he headed was the leading yeshiva in Hungary in the days of the Ktav Sofer, 300-400 students attended the yeshiva, most alumni of other Hungarian yeshivot. A substantial percentage of the rabbis serving in Hungary and central-Europe had been students at the Pressburg Yeshiva. Two books bound together. [2], 105 pages; 23 leaves. 23 cm. Good condition. Stains. Light wear. Contemporary binding, damaged.

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Sefer Chassidim - Krakow, 1581 - Copy of Ba'al HaHafla'ah, Teacher of the Chatam Sofer

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Description: Sefer Chassidim, mussar and topics related to Yirat Shamayim (fear of Heaven), by Rabbi Yehuda HaChassid. Krakow, [1581]. Printed by Yitshak [Isaac] ben Aharon of Prostitz (Prost?jov). Various ownership inscriptions. On the back free endpaper is an ownership inscription in ancient Ashkenazi script: "This book belongs to… R. Pinchas HaLevi Ish Horowitz Av Beit Din and Rosh Metivta in Frankfurt am Main". This attests that this copy belonged to R. Pinchas HaLevi Horowitz, author of the Hafla'ah. [Additional ownership inscriptions on front endpapers: "Sefer Chassidim belongs to David Prague of Worms", "Ber son of R. David of Prague" and "Yisrael son of … Shmuel… of Lissa"]. R. Pinchas HaLevi Ish Horowitz, author of the Hafla'ah (1791-1805), close disciple of R. Dov Ber the Magid of Mezeritch, [studied under his tutelage together with his brother R. Shmelke of Nikolsburg]. For more than 30 years, he served as Rabbi of Frankfurt am Main, the hub of Torah study in Germany at that time. The Chatam Sofer was among his disciples. He authored important books, including HaMikneh on Tractate Kiddushin, Ketubah on Tractate Ketubot and Hafla'ah on several tractates and on the Shulchan Aruch, endowing him with his cognomen "Ba'al HaHafla'ah". Sefer Chassidim, attributed to Rabbi Yehuda HaChassid, is a basic work on mussar and Jewish customs. The book contains laws and customs, Jewish thought and Mussar according to early Chassidic Kabbalistic Ashkenazi school of thought. This composition remarkably echoes Jewish society in Ashkenazi countries and its relationship with Christian environs during the 12th-13th centuries. This book was printed in many editions and is cited numerous times in Torah literature. In the first passage of the book, the author writes that it is intended "for G-d fearing people, because a pious person who out of his love of G-d, desires to completely fulfill His will… If he would know and understand pious conduct, he would do much… Therefore, Sefer Chassidim was written to enable G-d fearing individuals and all who return to their Creator with their whole being to read it and know and comprehend that which they need to do…". 147 leaves (mispaginated). 18.5 cm. Fair condition. Stains, dampstains. Most leaves in good condition, however, the index leaves at the end of the book are damaged with tears and dampstains. The last three index leaves have coarse open tears. Contemporary endpapers and binding (leather-covered wood). Damages and worming to binding.

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****WITHDRAWN FROM AUCTION****

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Description: ****WITHDRAWN FROM AUCTION**** Be'er Ya'akov, novellae and commentary on the four parts of the Shulchan Aruch and Talmudic treatises, by Rabbi Yakov [Ya'akov] Berlin. Furth, 1767. On the margin of page 40/a, is the signature of the Rebbe, author of Ohev Yisrael of Apta: "Avraham Yehoshua Heshel of Apta, Medzhibozh". Rebbe Avraham Yehoshua Heshel (1748-1825, Encyclopedia L'Chassidut, Vol. 1 84-91), son of R. Shmuel of ?migr?d. His first rabbinical position was in Kolbasov, Galicia. A visit to the city by R. Levi Yitzchak of Berdychiv and R. Moshe of Sasiv drew him to Chassidism. He became a disciple of R. Yechiel Michel of Zlotshov and of R. Elimelech of Lizhensk. In 1800, he was appointed to the Apta Rabbinate and in 1808 he moved to serve as Rabbi of Iasi until his relocation to Medzhibozh. He was considered the eldest, most prominent rebbe and Jewish leader of his times. Stories of the many wonders and salvations he performed have been passed from generation to generation. R. Yisrael of Ruzhin and R. Zvi Hirsh of Zhiditchov are among his celebrated disciples. He was notable for his love of the Jewish people and was used to saying that with the attribute of this "love for his fellow Jew" ingrained in his heart, he will stand before the Heavenly Court. [See a letter in Igrot HaOhev Yisrael on which he signs: "who loves all Jews…"]. On his tombstone he asked to write only the praise Ohev Yisrael (a lover of Israel), which also was the title of his book, which became a basic Chassidic book. The author, R. Yakov (Ya'akov) Berlin (1708-1750), a leading Torah scholar of the city of Furth, in the days of R. Yosef Steinhart, author of Zichron Yosef and other distinguished rabbis. His book Be'er Ya'akov was highly acclaimed by prominent Torah scholars of all times and is frequently cited in their writings. Among those who quote him are the Nodah B'Yehuda, the Chatam Sofer, Rabbi Akiva Eiger, the Chida, Rabbi Bezalel Ranshburg, Rabbi Yehuda Assad, the authors of Aruch LaNer, Chayei Adam, Aruch HaShulchan, and others. Chassidic Torah scholars also highly esteemed the book [see: Rabbi Binyamin Shlomo Hamburger, HaYeshiva HaRama B'Fi'orda, Vol. 1, pp. 467-473]. [2], 121, 123-144 leaves (originally [3], 144 leaves. Lacking 2 leaves). 29 cm. Condition varies among the leaves, most in fair condition, some in poor condition. Heavy worming. Stains. Tears and restorations to several leaves. New binding.

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Kehillat Ya'akov - Copy of the First Tosh Rebbe and of his Son-in-law the C?u?eni Rebbe, Author of Bnei Shileshim

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Description: Kehillat Ya'akov, guidelines to the Talmud and poskim, by Rabbi Yisrael Ya'akov Algazi. Lemberg [Lvov], 1862. Approbation of R. Chaim Halberstam, Rabbi of Sanz. Ownership inscription on the front free endpaper (in ink) stating that the book belongs to R. Meshulam Feish, Rabbi of Tosh (Nyirtass): "…Belongs to…Rabbi Meshulem Feish Av Beit Din and Rabbi of Tosh. I, the writer Moshe Efraim -"; followed by Another inscription (in pencil), signed by his grandson R. Moshe Shmuel Rottenberg of Kisv?rda (Kleinwardein), who received the book in the estate left by his father, R. Yehosef HaLevi Rabbi of C?u?eni, author of Bnei Shileshim: "Fell into my lot from the estate of my father…R. Y. HaLevi Av Beit Din of Nyirtass, Nyirmada and C?u?eni…Moshe Shmuel R' B. HaLevi, son of the Rabbi of C?u?eni". On verso is a penciled inscription of the index of the book. R. Meshulam Feish Segal Lowy I, the first Tosh Rebbe (1811-1873), leading Hungarian rebbe, renowned for his holiness and the wonders he performed, was born in Moravia. During his formative years, the Enlightenment movement and Torah abandonment spread throughout Moravia and under the influence of R. Shmuel (Samuel) Freund, a Dayan in Prague, R. Feish traveled to study in Hungarian yeshivas, led by R. Avraham Yitzchak Weinberger, R. Meir Ungvar and by R. Avraham She'ag. After his wedding, he moved to the village of Nyirvasvari (Eshvor) near Ny?rb?tor [a place famed for its illustrious kabbalists and G-d-fearing Jews whom the Komarno Rabbi would call "Fire and light scholars", a play on the name of the place Esh ("fire" in Hebrew) "v'or" ("and light" in Hebrew)], near his father-in-law, who was a disciple of the Kaliver Rebbe and the Rebbe of Komarno. R. Meshulam Feish was connected to the leading Chassidic Rebbes of Hungary and Galicia: The Rebbe of Liska, the Divrei Chaim of Sanz, the Mohari of Zhydachiv, the Rebbe of Komarno, the Rebbe of Roslavl, etc. His primary rebbe was R. David of Dynow who ordained him as rebbe. R. Lowy served as Rabbi and Av Beit Din of the city of Nyirtass (near the Kleinwardein [Kisv?rda] district) and was renowned for his fiery enthusiasm in G-d's service and prayer. Leading rebbes of his times (R. David of Dynow and R. Asher Anshel Yungreiss of Csenger) sent him people seeking salvation for deliverance by his pure prayers answered in the merit of his Torah learning and his holiness. Tales of the revelation of Ruach HaKodesh in his Beit Midrash are well-known. Reputedly, at the time he danced on Shabbat, he would perform wonders. [see Pe'er Meshulam for many stories about his wonders and the great elevation felt by those who were close to him]. In his senior year, he made a special trip to pray at the gravesite of Rebbe Elimelech of Lizhensk to merit a son and after his son was born, he named him Elimelech and would fondly call him "the Rebbe R. Elimelech" [this son was orphaned from his father in his babyhood and was raised by his illustrious brother-in-law Rebbe Yehosef Rottenberg, author of Bnei Shileshim. Only in 1908 did he succeed his father as Rabbi of Nyirtass]. In 1873, an epidemic broke out and the rebbe begged G-d to be an atonement for the People of Israel and indeed, his death brought an end to the epidemic. R. Zvi Elimelech of Blozhov, author of Zvi LaTsaddik said that if Rebbe Meshulam Feish would have lived to an old age, he would have conquered "not only Hungary but also Poland…". The Tosh dynasty continues until our days in Kiryat Tosh in Canada, founded by his great-grandson the Tosh Rebbe Meshulam Feish Segal Lowy II (1922-2015), son of R. Mordechai of Demecser, son of R. Elimelech Rabbi of Tosh and grandson of R. Meshulam Feish Lowy I. R. Lowy's eldest son-in-law, R. Yehosef HaLevi Rottenberg, author of Bnei Shileshim (1853-1911), son of the daughter of R. Zvi Hirsh of Zhydachiv and disciple of the Rebbes, author of Divrei Chaim of Sanz and of the author Yitav Lev of Siget. After the death of his father-in-law, he was appointed his successor as Rabbi of Nyirtass and relocated to serve in the Nyirmada rabbinate and in 1894 he moved to C?u?eni (Mezo-Kaszony) in the Russian Carpathians to serve in its rabbinate. He led a holy pure life with much fasting and self-denial (see Tiferet Beit Koson [C?u?eni]). His son whose signature appears in this book is R. Moshe Shmuel Rottenberg (1872-1946), who was raised together with his uncle of the same age, R. Elimelech of Tosh (1872-1942) in the Rottenberg home. After his marriage to the daughter of Rabbi Ben-Zion Fisch of Bor?a, he resided in Kleinwardein and later immigrated to the US and settled in Los Angeles and in NY (see: M. Wunder, Encyclopedia L'Chochmei Galicia, Vol. 4, pp. 831-832). 146, 131 leaves. 25 cm. High-quality paper. Good condition, light wear and stains. Contemporary leather binding, with torn damaged spine.

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Toldot Aharon, by Rabbi Aharon of Zhitomir - Berdychiv 1817 - Signatures of Rebbe Zvi Hirsh of Liska

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Description: Toldot Aharon, Chassidic and kabalistic homiletics on the Torah, by R. Aharon of Zhitomir. [Berdychiv, 1817]. Printed by R. Israel Back [disciple of R. Levi Yitzchak of Berdychiv]. First edition. Approbations of the Rabbi of Apta, Rabbi Yisrael son of Rabbi Levi Yitzchak of Berdychiv and Rabbi Mordechai of Chernobyl (who adds a blessing at the end). Complete signatures in the handwriting of R. Zvi Hirsh, Rabbi of Liska. His signature appears on the title page: "…Zvi Hirsh son of R. A. of Liska", and on before the title page is an inscription in his handwriting: "This book is mine, Zvi Hirsh son of R. A. Av Beit Din of Liska". On page 6/b are two corrections in his handwriting. The author is R. Aharon of Zhitomir (died in Tishrei 1816), close disciple of R. Levi Yitzchak of Berdychiv. From 1798, he was a maggid in the city of Zhitomir and after three years relocated to Hungary and there spread Chassidism. He initiated the Chassidic communities of Nagykaroly and Oshvar. R. Zvi Hirsh Freidman, the Rabbi of Liska (1798-1874), a leading Hungarian rebbe, from the first generation of the Chassidic movement in Hungary, was a disciple of the author of Yismach Moshe and of Rebbe Shalom of Belz, R. Yisrael of Ruzhyn, R. Meir of Peremyshlyany and of the Divrei Chaim of Sanz. Renowned as wonder-worker, people flocked to him from all over the country seeking blessings. Authored Ach Pri Tevu'a, HaYashar V'Hatov, etc. His celebrated disciple was R. Yeshaya of Kerestir, whose stamps always read: "In the past, meshamesh bakodesh of the Rabbi of Liska". [2], 36, 40-191 leaves. 21 cm. Greenish paper. Good condition. Some stains and wear, few tears and minor damages. Ancient leather binding, slightly damaged. Stefansky Chassidut, no. 604. [With a different pagination].

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Kli HaRo'im (Dyn?w) / Arba'ah Charashim with Tzetil Katan - First Editions - Many Signatures of Rabbi Zvi Elimelech Shapira, Son of the Dyn?w Rebbe

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Description: Three Chassidic and Kabbalistic books bound together: · Kli HaRo'im, on the book of Ovadya, conduct and compilations. By Rebbe Zvi Elimelech of Dyn?w. [Lemberg, 1848. First edition]. · Mesillot Chochma, introduction to the Arizal's kabbalah by Rabbi Meir Poppers, with the Ilan HaKadosh commentary of the Maharshal and ways of conduct from the book Totzot Chaim. [Poland-Russia, c. 1830-1850]. · Arba'a Charashim, Chassidic homilies, by Rabbi Aryeh Leib of ?a?cut, with "holy ways of conduct" by Rabbi Elimelech of Le?ajsk (Lizhensk) "who named them Tzetil Katan". With Ma'amar Shabatot Hashem (second part of Asarah Ma'amarot) by the Rama of Pano, [Lemberg, 1849. First edition, also first edition of the Tzetil Katan of Rabbi Elimelech of Le?ajsk author of No'am Elimelech. Printed at the end: "All of this, I have found in a manuscript". Since then, numerous editions of this composition have been printed]. Stefansky Chassidut, no. 64. On the leaves are many ink and penciled signatures of Rebbe "Zvi Elimelech Shapira", "Z.A.S." who in one place signed "Son of the holy pure rabbi Av Beit Din of Dyn?w". [Possibly, these are the signatures of Rabbi Zvi Elimelech Shapira of Blozhov, son of the "Holy pure Rabbi" David "Av Beit Din of Dyn?w"]. Additional signatures of Rabbi "Avraham Chaim Yitzchak - of Ropczyce". The Blozhov Rebbe Zvi Elimelech Shapira (1841-1924), senior Galician rebbe. Son of R. David of Dyn?w, author of Tzemach David and grandson of the author of Bnei Yissachar [author of the book Kli HaRo'im]. Son-in-law of R. Moshe Horwitz of Rozwad?w grandson of R. Naftali of Ropczyce. From a young age, he was renowned for his spectacular knowledge of the revealed Torah but less known is the fact that he also mastered the difficult Kabbalistic book Brit Kehunat Olam and others. He was a close disciple of R. Chaim of Sanz, author of Divrei Chaim. At the age of 28, he served as Rabbi of Rybotycze and traveled to greet his teacher, author of Divrei Chaim who received him with royal honor and sat him at the head of the table. In the middle of the meal, the Divrei Chaim honored R. Zvi Elimelech and requested that he deliver a Torah discourse. Of course, R. Zvi Elimelech declined to speak in the presence of his revered rebbe and teacher. Upon his leaving, R. Chaim of Sanz accompanied R. Zvi Elimelech until the street and requested that his disciple pray for him (Encyclopedia L'Chassidut, Vol. 3 p. 582). In 1874, he was appointed Rebbe and most of his life he served in the Blozhov rabbinate. One of his first Chassidim was R. Shalom Mordechai HaCohen the Maharsham Rabbi of Berezhany. R. Aharon Roth, author of Shomer Emunin was also counted among his close disciples and was encouraged by R. Zvi Elimelech to establish a Chassidic court although he was not from a family of rebbes. After WWI, he served as Rebbe of Przemy?l and Rzesz?w. His Torah teachings were printed in the Zvi LaTsaddik series, halachic responsa and Chassidic homilies on the Torah. Some were printed from manuscripts after the Holocaust by his grandson Rebbe Yisrael Shapira of Blozhov. 15 leaves; 20 leaves; [4], 20 leaves. 18 cm. Good condition. Stains and wear. Ancient, slightly worn binding. Stefansky Chassidut, no. 242; no. 64.

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Likutei Amarim Tanya - Shklow, 1806 - First Edition of Igeret HaTeshuva

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Description: Likutei Amarim Tanya, Part 1 - Sefer shel Benonim, Part 2 - Chinuch Katan - Sha'ar HaYichud V'Ha'emuna and Part 3 - Igeret HaTeshuva. By Rebbe Shneur Zalman of Liadi. Shklow, [1806]. Printed by the partners Baruch son of R. Eliyahu and Yitzchak son of R. Shmuel. Printed in the author's lifetime, first edition printed in Shklow. Part 3 - Igeret HaTeshuva is bound in a separate volume (lacking last leaf). This is the first edition of Igeret HaTeshuva in the "Mahadura Batra" (afterward printed in all editions). Two volumes. Vol. 1 - Parts 1-2: [4], 5-95, [1] leaves. Vol. 2 - Igeret HaTeshuva: [1], 2-17 leaves (lacking last leaf of Part 3, replaced with a photocopy). 16 cm. Printed on light blue paper. Fair-good condition. Stains and wear. Title page and several other leaves have restored tears (slightly affecting text). Worming. New bindings. This edition has several variants. Igeret HaTeshuva was also printed separately with corrections of the list of errata which appears at the end of part 2. Stefansky Chassidut, no. 626.

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Lu'ach Birkat HaNehenin, by the Admor HaZaken, Ba'al HaTanya - Zholkva, 1801 - Mahadura Kama Printed in the Author's Lifetime

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Description: Sefer Lu'ach Birkat HaNehenin and Seder Netilat Yadayim, by the Admor HaZaken Rebbe Schneur Zalman of Liadi, Ba'al HaTanya. Zholkva, [1801]. The words "In the Shklov community" are enlarged on the title page, whereas the name of the place of printing "Zholkva" is written in small letters. Second edition printed during the lifetime of the author, based upon the 1800 Shklov edition, which did not survive or was archived by the author. This is the first extant edition. This is the "Mahadura Kama" which preceded the revised enlarged "Mahadura Batra", printed by the Admor HaZaken, Ba'al HaTanya in his siddur in Shklov 1803, titled Seder Birkot HaNehenin. Written on the title page of this book: "Brought to print…with accurate editing and with the omissions which appeared in the first editions printed in Shklov". This attests to the fact that this edition was preceded by another which was printed in Shklov. This reference to another edition is concurred by another source - a question presented to the Rebbe, author of Tzemach Tzedek (Tzemach Tzedek responsa, Sha'ar HaMilu'im, Part 3, p. 57) in which the 1800 edition printed in Shklov is mentioned. That edition is not extant. We can only speculate if it was printed by the Rebbe, the Ba'al HaTanya himself or with his permission or perhaps by one of his Chassidim. Possibly it was archived by his order due to its being a Mahadura Kama. The edition offered here was printed at the same time by the Galician publisher R. Ya'akov son of R. Naftali Hertz of Brody, who copied the Shklov edition. He also printed another edition in Lvov (year unknown). These editions have approbations which the publisher acquired with an addition of the title page text and of his own closing passage found on the last page. [1], 2-27, [1] leaves. 18.5 cm. Good condition. Stains. Minor wear. Slight worming. New binding. Stefansky Chassidut, no. 262. See: Liberman, Ohel Rachel, Part 1, NY 1944, p. 144; Mondshine, Sifrei HaHalacha shel Admor HaZaken, NY 1984, p. 202 and onward.

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Avodat Yisrael - J?zef?w, 1842 - First Edition - Handwritten Unknown Censors' Omissions

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Description: Avodat Yisrael, homilies on the Torah and on Pirkei Avot, by the Magid Rabbi Yisrael of Koznitz. J?zef?w, 1842. First edition. Handsome copy on bluish paper. Two title pages. Leaf 9 is typographically different and is printed on paper different from that of the preceding and following leaves. On the margins of this leaf are several handwritten glosses. The inspection of these glosses revealed a surprising fact: these were censors' omissions from the version originally written by the Magid of Koznitz. Mentions of "nations" and "akum" (Hebrew acronym that stands for non-Jews, worshipers of the constellations) appear in the omitted sentences. Apparently, this version was invalidated by the censor during printing and the leaf had to be reprinted omitting the offending passages to comply with his requirements. Inspection of the copies in the National Library of Israel did not uncover the original leaf; possibly other copies also lack that leaf. After the first reprinting with the censorship corrections, the revised version was printed in all editions. This copy is the first to be found with the author's original version. To the best of our knowledge, the fact that this leaf was reprinted due to censorship was hitherto unknown. The author, R. Yisrael Hofstein, known as the Magid of Koznitz (Kozienice) (1737-1815, Encyclopedia L'Chassidut Vol. 2, pp. 542-548) was a leading rebbe who spread Chassidism throughout Poland. Born in Apta, according to Chassidic lore, he was named Yisrael by the instructions of the Ba'al Shem Tov who directed his parents to call their son by his own name saying that "all the Heavenly entourage participate in his joy". From his youth, he was known as a prodigy and great Torah scholar. After his marriage, he became close to R. Shmelke of Nikolsburg who at that time served as Rabbi of Rychwa? and he encouraged R. Yisrael to travel to the Magid of Mezritch who relied on R. Yisrael to edit Kabbalistic books and siddurim (he was reputed to have studied 600 Kabbalistic works before coming to the Magid of Mezritch). After the death of the Magid, he became a Chassid of R. Elimelech of Lizhensk (Le?ajsk) and was considered one of his leading disciples so much so that people would say that he inherited his "power of heart" from Rabbi Elimelech. In 1765, he began filling the position of a Magid Mesharim (preacher) in the city of Kozienice and from 1786, thousands of Chassidim began to throng to his court until he became one of the foremost rebbes in all of Poland. R. Yitzchak Meir Alter, author of Chiddushei HaRim is one the famous disciples of the Magid and was raised in his home. The Magid of Koznitz wrote many books on all Torah topics: halacha, novellae, homilies and kabbalah and was a leading kabbalist in his days. Some of his Kabbalistic compositions expounded upon early Kabbalistic books and the books of the Maharal of Prague. His famous book Avodat Yisrael was not printed in his lifetime but is known to be his most primary work and one of the most important Chassidic books, printed many times. Chassidic leaders praised the holiness of the book and its author. For example, the author of Aryeh D've Ila'i writes in his approbation: "…His words burn like fire…which inspire the heart of the reader…". Rebbe Ber of Radoszyce writes in his approbation: "With this I know that all who seek true Torah can find balm for their souls in the remaining holy writings". The author of Divrei Yechezkel of Sieniawa said: "All the books of the disciples of the Ba'al Shem Tov are holy and the holy book Avodat Yisrael is holy of holies". [5], 90, 32 leaves. Two title pages. Bluish paper. 20.5 cm. Good condition. Stains. Stamps on first title page. Light worming to some leaves. Fabric binding with leather spine, wear and slight damages. Stefansky Chassidut, no. 452. Rare copy. To the best of our knowledge, this book has not yet been offered for auction. Leaf [5] which contains three approbations, including an approbation of Rebbe Chaim Halberstam of Sanz, was added to only some copies because the approbations were brought to the printer after he had concluded printing the book [as written by the publisher on the margins of this leaf].

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Degel Machane Efraim - Korets, 1810 - First Edition

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Description: Degel Machane Efraim, a Chassidic composition on the Torah by Rabbi Moshe Chaim Efraim Ashkenazi of Sudilkov, grandson of Rabbi Yisrael the Ba'al Shem Tov. Korets, 1810. First edition. Approbations by Chassidic leaders: Rabbi Levi Yitzchak of Berdychiv, the Maggid Rabbi Yisrael of Koznitz, Rabbi Ya'akov Yitzchak HaLevi Horwitz "HaChozeh" of Lublin, Rabbi Avraham Yehoshua Heshel Rabbi of Apta and others. At the end of the book are "likutim" (compilations) of the Ba'al Shem Tov as well as "the dreams found in the writings of the Holy Rabbi" (one leaf). An early Chassidic book. This book is one of the first authorized sources of the Torah teachings of the Ba'al Shem Tov which were heard directly by the holy author, Rabbi Moshe Chaim Efraim of Sudilkov (1748-1800), the grandson of the Ba'al Shem Tov, son of his pious daughter Edel. Chassidic leaders greatly praised the holiness of the book and its ability to inspire its reader with fear of Heaven, and as Rabbi Levi Yitzchak of Berdychiv wrote in his approbation to the book: "I promise that this work will stir the hearts of our brothers the People of Yisrael to serve G-d". [2], 114 leaves. 19.5 cm. Greenish paper. Good-fair condition, stains, worming, wear to margins and restored tears [slightly affecting the text on several leaves]. Professional restoration to all leaves, censor stamp on title page. Inscriptions and signatures, [blurred] gloss on last leaf. New, handsome leather binding. Stefansky Chassidut, no. 128.

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Ma'or VaShemesh - First Edition, Breslau, 1842 - Including Two

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Description: Ma'or VaShemesh, both parts. [Breslau, 1842]. First edition. On both title pages are false dates and false name of the printer: "Printed by Rebbetzin Yehudit Rubinstein in 1785". On the title page of Part 2 is a handwritten signature: "Yehuda Yosef Reich". Ma'or VaShemesh on the Torah is one of the basic books of Chassidic thought and in many editions, it is printed together with the Chumash (the Rav Pninim edition). The author is Rabbi Klonimus Kalman HaLevi Epstein of Cracow (1751-1823), an exceptional Torah prodigy proficient in revealed and hidden Torah and leading disciple of R. Elimelech of Lizhensk, whom R. Epstein revered and considered on the level of the Ba'al Shem Tov himself. He also periodically travelled to the courts of R. Yechiel Michel of Z?oczew and R. Levi Yitzchak of Berdychiv. After the death of his teacher R. Elimelech, he would travel to the Chozeh of Lublin, to R. Ber of Radoszyce, to the Magid of Koznitz and to R. Mendeli of Ryman?w. Already in his own times, he was renowned as a holy man and was reputed for the revelations of ruach hakodesh he merited and the wonders he performed. His teacher R. Elimelech of Lizhenk crowned him Rebbe; he was the first to spread Chassidism in the city of Cracow and many of his followers became prominent Chassidic leaders. The Mitnagdim in Cracow pursued him and even announced a cherem (ban) on Chassidism in 1786. After this pursuit led to his imprisonment, Rabbi Kalman returned to his native city of Neustadt and established his court there. In 1820, he returned to Cracow, died several years later and is buried there. [2], 144 leaves; [1], 145-277, [2] leaves. Approximately 23 cm. White-greenish paper. Wide margins. Good-fair condition. Soft, worn paper, many dampstains. Tears and damages. Few restorations and reconstructed text to the first leaves and to Leaves 134-135. Elaborate leather binding. Stefansky Chassidut, no. 307. Some copies have different title pages: copies with a title page only for Part 1, copies with a falsified name of the printer but with a correct date - 1842), copies with the real title pages with the date 1842 and place of printing "Breslau in the printing press of R' Hirsh Sulzbach". This is a unique copy with both "false" title pages with all the details: "From the printing press of Ms. Yehudit Rubinstein, in 1785".

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Melo HaRo'im - Copy which Belonged to Rebbe David Morgenstern of Kotzk and to Rabbi Avraham Borenstein of Sochaczew

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Description: Melo HaRo'im, two parts. A methodology of the Talmud and poskim, by R. Ya'akov Zvi Yallish, Rabbi of Dyn?w. Liepzig [Lemberg, 1865. Third edition]. On the title page and endpapers are many signatures and inscriptions, including ownership inscriptions of R. David Morgenstern of Kotzk [the second Kotzk Rebbe], in Polish and Russian, and many signatures and inscriptions of R. Lipman David Shawkas, Rabbi and posek of Kotzk. Among the numerous ownership inscriptions and other inscriptions, appears the handwritten signature: "Avraham Borenstein" [R. Avraham Borenstein of Sochaczew, son-in-law of the Kotzker Rebbe who was a study partner of his relative R. Lipman David at the time they both resided in Kotzk], possibly this copy was in his possession at a certain stage. R. David Morgenstern - the second Kotzker Rebbe (1909-1973) was the eldest son of R. Mendeli of Kotzk and his successor as rebbe. Disciple of R. Bunim of Przysucha. Known for his genius and profound holiness. After his father died in 1859, most of the Chassidim followed the Chiddushei HaRim of Ger, however many of the sharp-minded Kotzkers were drawn to his close friend R. David who followed in the footsteps of his father, the Seraph of Kotzk. His sayings were sharp and concise and pierced the depth of one's soul and demanded perfection, comprehension and deep awareness. R. Avraham Borenstein - the first Sochatchov Rebbe (1839-1890), a leading Torah genius and tsaddik in his times. Son-in-law of R. Menachem Mendel "The Seraph of Kotzk". While serving as Rebbe to thousands of Chassidim, he held the position of head of a yeshiva where he taught his special method of studying Torah [as he writes in the introduction to his books, he received this method from his father-in-law, R. Mendeli of Kotzk]. Many of Poland's Torah scholars were his close disciples (the Chelkat Yo'av, Rabbi Aryeh Zvi Frumer, the Gaon of Kozieg?owy, Rabbi Avraham Weinberg, author of Reshit Bikurim, and others). His Avnei Nezer and Eglei Tal responsa on the melachot of Shabbat are basic study books in the area of Torah scholarship and Halacha. R. Lipman David (R. Duvcha) Shawkas (1830-c. 1924) was raised in the home of R. Mendil of Kotzk and at the age of 14, the Rebbe wed him to his niece who also grew up in the home of her uncle R. Mendeli. For many years he and his cousin (the Rebbe's son-in-law) R. Avraham Borenstein of Sochaczew, studied together in a deep scholarly fashion following the profound study methods of their teacher the Kotzker Rebbe. At the age of 16, he was given a semicha by his uncle the Kotzker Rebbe who also appointed him posek in the city of Kotzk, a position he held for 25 years. In 1885, he moved to serve as rabbi and Av Beit Din of Lubart?w and remained there for 13 years until he moved to Eretz Israel in 1898 following the Kotzker Rebbe's directive. Upon his arrival in Jerusalem, he was appointed Ra'avad of the Chassidic Beit Din in the city and remained in that capacity for 25 years. His teachings were recently printed in the Chiddushei HaGrad series. [4], 115, 64; 31 leaves. 26 cm. Good-fair condition. Wear and stains. Back cover is torn and detached; front cover is missing.

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Tractate Rosh Hashanah - Pietryka?, 1925 - First Edition Printed Especially for Those who Study the Daf Yomi - Copy of Rabbi Meir Shapira of Lublin, Creator of the Daf Yomi - With his Signature

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Description: Tractate Rosh Hashanah of the Babylonian Talmud, with commentaries. Pietryka?, 1925. Gemara of R. Meir Shapira of Lublin. On the inner side of the front cover is his signature: "Belongs to Meir Shapira Av Beit Din of Pietryka?" and his stamp: "Meir Shapira Av Beit Din and rabbi of Pietryka?". Stamps of Beit Eked Sefarim" of the Chachmei Lublin Yeshiva. On Page 41 is a handwritten correction [apparently, the handwriting of R. Meir Shapira]. This Gemara is from a special edition which was printed for the first cycle of the Daf Yomi study. It was printed in a small format to ease carrying while traveling and each Talmud Daf (leaf) is printed on four pages. The Maharsha commentary is also printed on the Daf (in the margins). The Gemara was not printed as a full set (additional tractates were not printed) and to the best of our knowledge it is the first Gemara printed for those who study the Daf HaYomi. Printed on the verso of the title page is a table - "Chart for the schedule for study of the worldwide Daf Yomi", with an introduction - "Important Notice" - which details the benefits of the table: "As set in the assembly of most of the Rebbes and Rabbis who participated in the Great Assembly in Vienna on Wednesday, the 10th of Elul 1923, initiated by the famous Torah scholar R. Meir Shapira Rabbi of Pietryka? and its region (Polish Siem delegate), that each man should participate in the study of the worldwide Daf Yomi, and thank G-d almost all of our Jewish brethren have accepted this regular study session…". Further, the publisher explains the benefit of the table: "The shopkeeper who deals in trade and is burdened earning his livelihood and with other cares is liable to forget to study the Daf Yomi and later when he does find the time to make up the obligation he missed, he may forget which Daf belongs to that day… Later, when he owes several pages, he will entirely despair of paying his debt…". Afterward, he explains the benefit of the format: "For the benefit of traders who cannot find the time to study one complete Daf in one sitting… but want to divide the Daf into portions throughout the day, we have printed each Daf in four small pages… For the benefit of travelers… we have printed a small volume which is easy to take along… and for the benefit of the students who go to school or to yeshiva and carry their books in their bags…". R. Meir Shapira (1887-1934), Rabbi of Pietryka? and Lublin, head of the Chachmei Lublin Yeshiva, introduced the idea of Daf Yomi, and was one of the founders of Agudat Yisrael and one of the leading rabbis of his times [see item no. 45]. He is noted for his idea of the Daf Yomi, which he introduced at the first Great Assembly of Agudat Yisrael in Vienna, in Elul 1933. The idea of Daf Yomi is to divide the study of the Babylonian Talmud into a regular schedule of one Daf each day throughout the year. In this manner, the Talmud is completed in seven years. This initiative was highly successful and tens of thousands of men began to study according to this plan. The date for beginning the program was set for Rosh Hashanah 1923. The Gerrer Rebbe who was a prominent Polish leader in those days announced on Rosh Hashanah eve that "I am going to study the Daf Yomi" and he was followed by thousands of his Chassidim. The Daf Yomi became a precious asset for young and old of all circles. Today, tens of thousands of Jews study the Daf Yomi and thousands of lectures take place each day all over the world on the Daf and various organizations have been established to spread and reinforce this study. From the time of its initiation until today, the Talmud has been completed 12 times. [3], 61, 64-133 pages (lacking one leaf: pages 61-62). 22 cm. Fair-good condition. Dry paper. Stains, wear and tears. Restored binding, incorporating part of the original binding.

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Chok L'Yisrael, Bamidbar - Zhovkva, 1802 - Copy of Rebbe Chune Halberstam of Ko?aczyce - With his Own Signature

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Description: Chok L'Yisrael, Part 4 - Bamidbar. Zhovkva, 1802. This copy belonged to Rebbe Chune Halberstam of Ko?aczyce. On the title page is his signature: "Chune Halberstam". On the front and back free endpapers are handwritten inscriptions indicating that the book "…belongs to the Rabbi of Ko?aczyce, here in Rzesz?w". R. Chune Halberstam (1884-1942, Encyclopedia L'Chassidut Vol. 1, pp. 625-626), Related through both his parents to the Sanz Rebbe, the author of Divrei Chaim. His father, R. Menachem Mendel Halberstam of Frysztak was the son of R. Aryeh Leib of Dukla, son of R. David of Cieszan?w, son of R. Chaim of Sanz. His mother, Feige Bayla was the daughter of R. Yechezkel Shrage Halberstam of Szeniawa, son of R. Chaim of Sanz. Reputedly, R. Chune was born as a result of a blessing bestowed by his ancestor the Szeniawa Rebbe who foresaw his illustrious future and said, "I have had a Heavenly revelation that he will become a great man". Chassidic lore recounts that this grandfather crowned R. Chune, requesting that he pray for his health. He was known throughout Galicia as a man of truth and as person who loved his fellow-Jew. One Erev Yom Kippur, at the height of his pre-fast meal, he cried out: "With ahavat Yisrael (love of the Jewish people), it is possible to gain endless lofty heights". He would often repeat the saying of his grandfather the Divrei Chaim of Sanz: "I do not fear any person, not even an angel, I only fear the sigh of a poor person". Indeed, he was very active on behalf of the poor and the disheartened, especially the needy of Eretz Israel. At a young age, he was appointed Rabbi of Ko?aczyce (Poland), and thereafter was called the Ko?aczyce Rebbe by all. After the death of his brother-in-law, R. Simcha Yissachar Ber Halberstam of Szeniawa, many Chassidim joined his court, among them R. Itzik'l of Przeworsk. Eventually, he became famous as one of the foremost Chassidic rebbes. The tsaddikim of his times greatly revered and praised him. R. Yissachar Dov Rokeach of Belz said that his fear of Heaven is renowned throughout the world and his great-uncle R. Yitzchak Yeshaya Halberstam (R. Shi'iy'le Tshechoiver) said that he can see in R. Chune many of the attributes of his father, the Divrei Chaim of Sanz (Encylopedia L'Chachmei Galicia, Vol 2, pp. 467-471). During WWI, R. Chune immigrated to Ko?ice (Slovakia) and remained there for seven years. After the war, he returned to Poland and established his court in the city of Rzesz?w, and there established his yeshiva named Zera Kodesh, in which he guided young men in the paths of Torah and Chassidism. During the Holocaust, he fled Rzesz?w to Frysztak and was clandestinely surrounded by Chassidim. The increased danger forced the Rebbe to hide in a bunker in a potato field outside of the city but he was discovered by the Nazis, deported to the Jas?o prison and executed on the second day of Chol HaMo'ed Succot 1942. His prison-mate in the Jas?o prison, R. Moshe Rand, relates that before his execution, R. Chune recited with R. Moshe the Nishmat prayer and declared that after examining his deeds, he found only one sin, he was not active enough on behalf of the needy population of Eretz Israel (Encyclopedia Shema Yisrael, Vol. 2, p. 183). His wife, children and grandchildren and his entire extended family, more than 70 people, also perished in the Holocaust (Menashe Unger, Admorim SheNispu Ba'Shoah, pp. 95-98). It is well known that the Rebbe, author of the Divrei Chaim of Sanz and his sons and holy descendants punctiliously studied the daily lesson in the book Chok L'Yisrael, and they were accustomed to studying it while donning Rabbeinu Tam tefillin. R. Yekutiel Yehuda Halberstam of Sanz-Klausenburg writes: "Study of Chok L'Yisrael is of great importance… the Rebbe of Sanz and of Shinova and other Torah leaders studied Chok L'Yisrael daily…" (Shefa Chaim, Ra'ava D'Ra'avin, Part 1, Netanya 2009, p. 5). [2]. 200, 205-206 (lacking Leaves 201-204). 18 cm. Condition varies, good-fair. Stains. Slight wear. Worming, in some place affecting text. Binding with leather spine, with damages and worming. In the Bibliography of the Hebrew Book, only Bamidbar is recorded (possibly the other volumes were not printed). Enclosed is an expert's report with identification of the signature of Rebbe Chune Halberstam.

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Sha'arei Kedusha / Alim L'Terufah - Jerusalem, 1907 - Copy with Elaborate Leather Binding that Belonged to the Ben Ish Chai

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Description: Sha'arei Kedusha, mussar and kabbalistic customs, by Rabbi Chaim Vital. Jerusalem, 1907. Bound with: Alim L'Terufah, Igeret Mussar of the Ramban, with Igeret Musar of the Vilna Gaon and Orchot Ish by the Rosh. Jerusalem, 1907. Pocket edition. Both books were printed in the same printing press, without mention of its name. At the beginning of Sha'arei Kedusha, a notice is printed regarding the woman who brought it to print, "The dear woman Rivka… daughter of the dear Yosef Avraham Shalom Yosef, wife of the dear Yitzchak Refael Balilius", whose "spirit moved her to reprint this cherished book in the printing press of the city of Jerusalem…" [Rivka Balilius was a renowned philanthropist of the Babylonian Jewish community. Her father, R. Yosef Avraham Shalom, established and funded the Porat Yosef Yeshiva in Jerusalem]. In the book Alim L'Terufah, this edition also features Segula Nifla'ah to "be saved from the curse of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai", by "The mighty Torah scholar…R. Yosef Chaim who grandly rules the Jews of Babylonia and its region…and it was printed in his awesome book Ben Ish Chai…". Splendid copy bound in an elaborate leather binding, with gilt adornments. Embossed in the center of the binding: "C.R. [Chacham Rabbi] Yosef Chaim" - this copy was prepared especially in honor of R. Yosef Chaim of Baghdad, author of Ben Ish Chai. Apparently, it was dedicated to the "Ben Ish Chai" by the publisher, the philanthropist Rivka Balilius. On the front flyleaf is a dedication handwritten and signed by "Ya'akov son of R. Yosef Chaim" - the Chacham Rabbi Ya'akov, son of the Ben Ish Chai who gave this book as a "token of love" to R. David Sassoon on the 5th of Cheshvan 1911, one year after the death of the Ben Ish Chai. R. Yoseph Chaim of Baghdad (1833-1909), author of Ben Ish Chai and dozens of other important books. Son of R. Eliyahu, son of R. Moshe Chaim Rabbi of Baghdad. Disciple of R. Abdallah Somekh, famous for his Torah knowledge and piety. After his father died in 1859, at the young age of 26, R. Yoseph Chaim succeeded his father as orator in the Great Synagogue of Baghdad and thereafter delivered a sermon there every Shabbat for 50 years. On special Shabbatot such as Shabbat Tshuva and Shabbat HaGadol, more than 4000 people would congregate to hear his sermons and he would enthrall the audience for four to five hours, spicing his words with charming parables. His sermons were a mixture of halacha and aggada, rulings and commentary and aggadot Chazal, according to their simple meaning (pshat), remez and their hidden meanings (kabbalah). The author of Ben Ish Chai was the leading Torah scholar of his city and the entire country. All the Baghdad rabbis and dayanim submitted to his authority and he was the unchallenged leader of Babylonian Jews. His greatness in revealed and hidden Torah became renowned throughout the world and he was famous for his great holiness. In 1869, he travelled to Eretz Israel to pray at the graves of tsaddikim, and at that time, he received a Heavenly revelation that his neshama (soul) originated from the neshama of Benayahu ben Yehoyada after whom he named many of his works: Ben Ish Chai, Ben Ish Chayil, Ben Yehoyada, Rav Pe'alim, Od Yoseph Chai, etc. His other books are Leshon Chachamim, Aderet Eliyahu, Torah Lishma responsa (which he printed anonymously), Chasdei Avot, Birkat Avot and more. Two books bound together. 82 leaves; 13, [1] leaves. 10.5 cm. Leaf 6 of Sha'arei Kedusha is torn and partly lacking (affecting text). Good condition. Few stains. Damaged bindings. Provenance: Sassoon family collection.

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Shulchan Aruch Choshen Mishpat - Thousands of Marginalia - Full Hitherto Unprinted Composition in the Handwriting of Kabbalist Rabbi Naftali Katz, Author of Semichat Chachamim

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Description: Shulchan Aruch Choshen Mishpat, in a small volume, "Lifne Zekenim im Ne'arim", with short commentary. [Venice, 1593? / 1598?]. Approximately 2000 long handwritten marginalia by two writers: About 1500 glosses identified as written by Rabbi Naftali Katz, author of Semichat Chachamim, and another 500 glosses by a different writer from a later time [mid-18th century], containing scholarly novellae and additions to the initial glosses of Rabbi Naftali Katz discussing their content or continuing Rabbi Katz's train of thought. The glosses of the first writer have been identified by experts as handwritten by R. Naftali Katz, see enclosed authorization. The script is very similar to his handwriting in the famous letter he wrote to his wife at the time he sat in prison in Frankfurt am Main. The glosses by R. Naftali Katz are a complete composition, like a Ba'er Hetev book, with footnotes. The content of the glosses is summaries of the words of the Shach or the Sma and other poskim, with his rulings and many of his additions. 15 years ago, a section of a similar composition written by R. Naftali Katz on the Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim was discovered, in which he refers to his work Kedusha V'Beracha [Published in the Yeshurun anthology, Vol. 11, Elul 2002 pp. 105-110]. The style and form of the composition published in Yeshurun are identical to the style and form of the composition offered here [after comparing the composition published in Yeshurun to the handwriting of R. Naftali Katz in his aforementioned letter, it seems that the composition printed in Yeshurun was written by a copier, whereas the composition offered here is an original composition in his own handwriting]. This is an important composition on the Shulchan Aruch Choshen Mishpat which has not yet been printed, in the handwriting of the illustrious kabbalist R. Naftali Katz (1650-1719), Rabbi of Frankfurt am Main, author of Semichat Chachamim. We have not yet identified the second writer. The glosses are in Ashkenazi script characteristic to the mid-18th century, and they were written throughout many years at various times from ca. 1750-1770 [the writer mentions the book Kreiti U'Pleiti printed in 1763]. On page 141/a, he refers to that which is written in "my composition Kos Yeshu'ot L'Rambam, Chapter 10 of Hilchot Eshut page 17/a" - apparently referring to a work by the writer which had not been printed [we have not found any work written on the Rambam with this name]. Cited in the glosses are books printed in the 17th century, such as Beit Shmuel on Even HaEzer (printed in 1689),R. Naftali Katz, Rabbi of Ostroh, Posen and Frankfurt am Main was born in 1650 to R. Yitzchak Katz Rabbi of Stopin and Lublin, son of R. Naftali Katz Rabbi of Lublin, son of R. Yitzchak Katz, son-in-law of the Maharal of Prague [in a gloss on page 11/b, he cites his grandfather, the Maharal of Prague in his book Gur Aryeh, see footnote no. 1, on the prohibition to adjudicate before non-Jewish courts of law]. Already in his youth, he was known for his holiness and exceptional diligence and his fame spread throughout Ashkenazi countries and Poland. Due to his persistent study, he mastered the entire Talmud and was able to recite it by heart. Immediately after his marriage with the daughter of R. Shmuel Shmelke Rabbi of Ostroh, he was appointed head of the Ostroh Yeshiva. At the age of 30, R. Naftali Katz was appointed Rabbi of Ostroh and the Ukraine region which formerly boasted foremost rabbis such as the Maharsha in its rabbinate. In 1689, he was appointed Rabbi of Posen succeeding Rabbi Yeshaya Horwitz grandson of the Shla (Posen was a central important city; the Shla HaKadosh, author of the Levushim and his grandfather the Maharal of Prague both served in its rabbinate). At the same time, at the age of 40, he was appointed head of the Va'ad Arba Aratzot, the supreme Torah authority in all Ashkenazi countries and Poland. In a gloss on page 7/a he determines that the Jewish community of Eger is in the legal jurisdiction of Pihem (Bohemia) and not of Ashkenaz. This ruling proves that the writer ruled on community matters, decisions which are the responsibility of the heads of Va'ad Arba Artzot. In 1704, he was appointed Rabbi of Frankfurt am Main (during the days of the Maharshashach, grandfather of the Chatam Sofer), a position he held for 16 years until the great fire in 1711. After the fire he was forced to flee the city due to a libel that the fire broke out because of his dealings in hashba'ot and writing amulets. After some time, he headed for Eretz Israel, but upon reaching Constantinople he became ill and died on the 24th of Tevet 1719. He was among the most renowned kabbalists in Ashkenazi countries. The Ba'al Shem Tov highly praised him and his great powers in writing amulets. (People tell that after the Ba'al Shem Tov arrived in Constantinople on his way to Eretz Israel, R. Naftali Katz appeared to him in a dream and revealed to him that he will not merit coming to Eretz Israel just like he himself did not merit coming to Eretz Israel and died in Constantinople. Therefore, the Ba'al Shem Tov turned back to his city of Medzhibozh. After many years, the disciples of the Magid of Mezhyrich went to pray at the grave of R. Naftali Katz on their way to Eretz Israel and at that time he appeared to the R. of Liadi Ba'al HaTanya and instructed him to return to his country and only Rebbe Mendeli of Vitsyebsk continued with his group to Eretz Israel). He was called by the title of his book Semichat Chachamim on Tractate Berachot of which Part 1 begins with a kabbalistic introduction and Part 2 titled Kedusha U'Beracha contains novellae on Tractate Berachot. He composed kabalistic poems, entreaties and prayers and would recite them at night arising to lament the exile of G-d's presence. Some were printed in the book Beit Rachel. His awesome testament was printed in dozens of editions titled "Testament of Rabbi Naftali Katz". At the time of his death in Constantinople, awe-inspiring things took place and all the people saw his wondrous powers and his great holiness. According to a story told of that event, cited in the book Sha'ar Naftali U'Refu'at HaNefesh (and in other books), many Jews who resided in his city passed before him and he told each person from which soul he had been reincarnated. He left behind generations of tsaddikim and Torah scholars. His son-in-law R. Moshe Rokeach, son of R. Elazar Rokeach, author of Arba'a Turei Even was an ancestor of Rebbe Sar Shalom of Belz, progenitor of the Belz dynasty. Copy lacking title page and last leaves: 2-239 leaves (instead of 242, [2] leaves). 18 cm. Good-fair condition, wear damages, detached leaves and binding. Enclosed is an expert's report identifying the handwriting of the glosses as belonging to Rabbi Naftali Katz, author of Semichat Chachamim.

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Chesed LeAvraham / Magid Mesharim - Glosses in the Handwriting of the Author of Arvei Nachal and His Teacher Rabbi Ze'ev Wolf of Ch?rnyy-Ostrov

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Description: Sefer Chesed LeAvraham, Kabbalistic matters by Rabbi Avraham Azulai. Zholkva, 1765. Bound with the book: Magid Mesharim, Zholkva, 1770. Many marginalia in ancient handwriting by two writers. An expert identified these glosses as handwritten by the Rebbe, author of Arvei Nachal, and by his rabbi and mentor R. Ze'ev Wolf of Ch?rnyy-Ostrov. Various signatures and annotations. An ancient signature of "Yechiel Michel son of Rabbi—" on the last page. R. David Shlomo Eibeschutz (1755-1814), author of Levushei Srad and Arvei Nachal was an illustrious Hassidic Torah scholar and posek. He served as Rabbi of Chorostkow and Soroka and immigrated to Safed in 1809. His relative, R. Levi Yitzchak of Berdychiv writes about him in his approbation "sharp and knowledgeable in Torah, all his deeds are for the sake of G-d". His books are widely accepted among the basic halachic and Chassidic books. His rabbi and mentor, R. Ze'ev Wolf of Ch?rnyy-Ostrov (passed away in Adar 1823), a close disciple of the Magid of Mezrich. Served as rabbi and rebbe in city of Ch?rnyy-Ostrov, and was among the leading rebbes of the Hassidic movement in its initial stages of expansion. Rabbi and mentor of many rebbes, including R. Menachem Mendel of Kosov author of Ahavat Shalom and Arvei Nachal. In 1798, he immigrated to Eretz Israel. During his journey to Eretz Israel, he met R. Nachman of Breslev in Constantinople, who later upon his arrival in Eretz Israel resided in the home of Rabbi Ze'ev Wolf in Haifa. After several years he moved to Tiberias where he died and is buried. 59, [3], 60-63 leaves; 56 leaves. 20.5 cm. Fair condition. Dark, stained, paper. Damage from use and wear on majority of leaf corners with damage to text. Worming. Elegant half-leather bindings, within cardboard case. Expert's report enclosed.

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Autograph Glosses of Rabbi Akiva Eger - On Torat Chesed Responsa, Salonika, 1723

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Description: Torat Chesed responsa, by R. Hasdai ha-Kohen Perahyah. [Salonika, 1723. First edition]. The book contains three scholarly glosses in the handwriting of Rabbi Akiva Eger. The first gloss (14 lines on page 67/b) begins with "Asking pardon from your honor, in the Tur ibid it is explicitly written…". The second gloss, on page 167/b, is particularly long (43 words) and begins with "Simply, it is not difficult…".The third gloss (32 words on page 196/b) begins with a sharp query: "There is not even a simple question here". [All three expressions are characteristically used by Rabbi Akiva Eger. See Hagahot Rabbi Akiva Eger in the Gilyon HaShas and in his other glosses]. Torat Chesed is often cited in the novellae and glosses of Rabbi Akiva Eger. The renowned Rabbi Akiva Eger (1761-1837) was one of the most outstanding Torah scholar in his times. Born in Eisenstadt, his father was R. Moshe G?ns and his mother was the daughter of the first R. Akiva Eger [Rabbi of Pressburg, author of Mishnat D'Rabbi Akiva]. Before his bar-mitzvah he studied in the Breslau Yeshiva under the tutelage of his uncle and teacher R. Binyamin Wolf Eger. At the age of fifteen he began delivering Torah discourses. After his marriage in 1778, he moved to Lisa, to the home of his father-in-law R. Itzik Margaliot. In spite of his young age, he was considered one of the leading scholars of the city which at that time was a Torah center. In 1792 he was appointed Rabbi of Miros?awiec (M?rkisch Friedland) wherein he established a yeshiva. In 1815 he moved to serve as Rabbi of Posen, a position he held for 23 years until his death. In Posen, he founded a yeshiva and taught many disciples. His disciples were more important to him than writing Torah novellae and writing responsa to the thousands of queries which reached him daily from all corners of the universe. He was a holy person and possessed ru'ach hakodesh, was humble and pleasant, yet he insisted upon the honor due to the Torah and the rabbinate. He used his authority to lead the communities in the Posen district (Northern Poland and Prussia) and fiercely and successfully battled the Reform movement and those who attempted to tear down the walls of Torah observance. He made many regulations and established many public institutes. (He was accustomed to visiting each ill person of the communities in which he served as rabbi. In his senior years, he appointed special emissaries to visit the ill in his stead, requesting their names to enable him to pray for them). His descendants were also leading Torah scholars in their times: R. Shlomo Eger, one of Warsaw's most influential Jews, succeeded his father in the Posen rabbinate. He wrote Gilyon Maharsha and other books; R. Avraham Eger from the city of Rawicz edited his father's writing [with his own additions signed "A.A.B.H.H. - acronym of the Hebrew "Amar Avraham Ben HaRav HaMehaber" (Avraham, son of the author said)]; his renowned son-in-law R. Moshe Sofer, author of the Chatam Sofer, after the death of his first wife, wed the daughter of R. Akiva Eger [Rebbetzin Sherel, mother of R. Avraham Shmuel Binyamin Wolf, author of the Ktav Sofer and R. Shimon Sofer, Rabbi of Cracow]. He devoted his entire life to Torah study, known for his amazing proficiency and his deep definitions which eventually became the foundation of Torah learning until our times. His books and novellae are basic Torah literature for yeshiva students and for poskim. R. Elazar Menachem Shach, author of Avi Ezri, writes in his approbation to the book Pote'ach She'arim - Of the Torah Teachings of R. Akiva Eger (Jerusalem, 1985) "That for us, Rabbi Akiva Eger and his opinions and his reasoning are as conclusive as one of the Rishonim…". Among his works: the Rabbi Akiva Eger responsa printed in his lifetime by his sons who followed his instructions. After his death, his sons continued printing his book of novellae Drush V'Chiddush and more volumes of his responsa, the Gilyon HaShas notations (first printed in his lifetime in the Prague and Vilna Talmuds), his glosses on the Shulchan Aruch and Tosfot Rabbi Akiva Eger on the Mishnah. Additional responsa and Torah novellae are still being printed from his manuscripts (such as, Kushiyot Atzumot, Ktav V'Chotam, Michtevei Rabbi Akiva Eger, etc.). Various books he wrote have been printed in many editions, some in expanded editions with explanations and with compilations of his teachings from other places with complementing topics. These glosses have not yet been printed and are hitherto unknown. They have been discovered only upon the examination of Kedem's experts and were identified as being written in the characteristic handwriting of Rabbi Akiva Eger. The glosses contain unknown explanations of various Talmudic treatises which do not have any parallel in the printed books of Rabbi Akiva Eger but they are consistent with his well-known approach to Torah study. [14], 199 leaves (lacking title page and last leaf with a list of errors which is missing from most copies). Originally: [15], 199, [1] leaves or: [1], 199, [15] leaves). Fair condition. Wear and stains, damages to wide margins. Detached leaves. Worn ancient leather binding, created using ancient printed leaves (contains: printed leaves from the Salonika Talmud and Spanish incunabula leaves), and with handwritten leaves (early Oriental script).

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Ohel David - Vienna, 1825 - Additions and Corrections in the Handwriting of the Author, Rabbi David Deutsch, Rabbi of Ir Chadash

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Description: Ohel David on Tractate Yevamot. By Rabbi David son of Rabbi Mendel Deutsch. Vienna, 1825. First edition. 18 long and short handwritten glosses. More than ten of the glosses are the author's own additions to his writings. Most glosses are in charming scribal Rashi script. Two additions (page 18/2, page 20/1) and a correction of a word (page 5/1) are written in the author's own Ashkenazi handwriting. R. David Deutsch, Rabbi of Ir Chadash (1757-1831, Ishim B'Teshuvot Chatam Sofer, p. 113), author of Ohel David. Renowned Torah scholar, disciple of the Nodah B'Yehuda in Prague and of the Maharam Barabi in Pressburg. He served as Rabbi of Jamnitz, Frauenkirchen and Dunajsk? Streda. From 1810 until his death, he served as Rabbi of Nowe Miasto. Some of his Talmudic novellae were printed in his Ohel David books. He exchanged a prolific halachic correspondence with the leading Torah figures of his times, such as the Nodah B'Yehuda, the Chatam Sofer and the author of Yismach Moshe. The Chatam Sofer wrote an approbation on his book: "That tsaddik, holy Jew, genius… I have seen in it (the book) wonderful things…We are privileged to merit his words and his light…his merit should protect us from all harm". Many ownership stamps of R. David Ish-Shalom Friedman "David son of the Maharik ish Shalom - Av Beit Din of Zelem". R. David Friedman Ish Shalom (1851-1906), served as Rabbi of the Deutschkreutz (Zelem) community in Hungary, from 1891-1906. Son of R. Yisrael Kort Rabbi of Vrbov?, and son-in-law of R. Menachem Katz Prostitz Rabbi of Deutschkreutz (Zelem). The verso of the title page is inscribed and signed by "Zvi Hirsh Bishetz", who gave the book as a bar-mitzvah gift to "Shmuel Meir" in 1867. Next to the signature of Zvi Hirsh Bishetz is an inscription in another handwriting: "His name and memory shall be erased from under the heavens..." - [According to the harsh curses, we can surmise that "Zvi Hirsh" converted to a different religion or had gone astray]. On the leaf before the title page are ownership inscriptions from 1835 of Rabbi "Yosef Shmuel Hershler - son of R. Y. Z." [son of R. Yonah Ze'ev Hershler of Jerusalem, descendant of R. Yosef Shmuel Hershler Rabbi of Subate, who immigrated to Jerusalem in 1861 and died in 1894). [1], 22 leaves. Approximately 24 cm. Greenish-white paper. Good condition. Wear and stains. Some cutoff glosses. Old, torn and detached binding. Enclosed is expert's report about the content of the glosses, identifying the handwriting of Rabbi David Deutsch.

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Ma'amar Mordechai - Dyhernfurth, 1719 - Copy of the Kabbalist Mula Or Shraga from Yazd, a Leading Persian Sage - With Hundreds of Glosses in his Handwriting and with his Signatures - Wide-Scope Hitherto Unprinted Composition - The Only Surviving Writings in his Own Handwriting

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Description: Ma'amar Mordechai, novellae and compositions on the Torah, with a commentary on the Passover Haggadah, by R. Mordechai son of R. Yehuda Leib Holish of Lvov. Dyhernfurth, [1719]. This copy belonged to the renowned kabbalist Mula Or Shraga, venerable Persian sage and leader. With more than 200 handwritten marginalia, most in his own handwriting, including more than 80 glosses with his signature "Or Shraga". Several leaves and endpapers have additional glosses by members of his family, his sons or grandsons. Most glosses are long, with original content of novellae, homilies and remazim, combination of Holy Names and kabblistic kavanot. Most glosses are not directly connected to the content in the book, but at times are generally related to topic of the weekly portion and sometimes have no connection whatsoever. Apparently, the Or Shraga used the margins of this book as a blank space for his writings and to preserve his novellae rendering this copy a complete manuscript of novellae by the Or Shraga. No other manuscripts of Torah novellae can be traced to the Or Shraga. These glosses have never been printed. Found in several places in the book are signatures and stamps of the sons and grandsons of the Or Shraga who served as Yazd sages and rabbis: "Moshe son of Ma'or" [son of the Or Shraga], "Yitzchak son of R. Moshe…" [R. Yitzchak son of R. Moshe grandson of the Or Shraga], "Moshe son of R. Yitzchak grandson of the Ma'or Shraga" [called "Mula Ajababa"], "Refael son of R. Chacham Moshe grandson of the Ma'or". The famous kabbalist Mula [Chacham] Or Shraga (died in 1794), Rabbi of the city of Yazd, was the most venerable sage and leader of Persian Jewry. He reputedly arrived in Yazd from Isfahan, after being sentenced to death together with another nine rabbis by the city governor who was a rabid Jew-hater. Out of the ten, seven rabbis were murdered and only three miraculously escaped, among them the Or Shraga who fled to Yazd. [The other rabbis were Mula Daryavesh who escaped to Shiraz and Mula Moshe to Kashan. They regularly held a study session with one another by Kefitzat Haderech]. The move of the Or Shraga to Yazd revived Jewish life in the city and due to his powerful impact, Yazd Jewry were devoted to Torah study and mitzvoth in spite of their remoteness from Jewish centers. Under his rabbinical influence, Yazd developed into a Torah center in itself which affected the spiritual state of all of Persian Jewry earning it the cognomen "Small Jerusalem" and "Dor al Ibarat [center of faith]. The Rabbi Or Shraga was celebrated as an outstanding Torah scholar who dedicated his life to Torah study and as a tsaddik and kabbalist and wonder-worker. According to tradition, he merited studying Torah from Eliyahu HaNavi who revealed to him that he descended from King David. Persian tradition recounts many amazing tales about him. It is told that when the Persian Shah saw him, he saw a pillar of fire hovering above his head and gave him a royal mantle as a sign of honor. The humility of the Or Shraga did not allow him to wear the mantle and he cut off its sleeves. When an officer of the Shah noticed the cutoff sleeves, he fumed and raised his arm to slap him; however his arm withered and became paralyzed. Only after the Shah's entreaties, did the Or Shraga pray for the officer and his arm was restored to its former state. Another story attributes the miraculous deliverance of the Yazd population from rebels who besieged the city to the Or Shraga. His reputation spread beyond the boundaries of Persia. Recounted in the book "M'Yazd L'Eretz HaKodesh" (Jerusalem 1987, p. 144), is the saying of the Ba'al Shem Tov who never met the Or Shraga that "I have a faraway friend - Rabbi Or Shraga". The grave of the Or Shraga, in the Yazd cemetery became a site for pilgrimage by Jews and non-Jews alike and word spread that his grave has segulot for salvation. Rabbi Or Shraga was also revered by the Muslim Yazd residents. A story is told of a non-Jew Yazd resident who was struck by a storm at sea and after he cried "G-d of Or Shraga, answer me", the sea became calm. From that time on, that non-Jew used to light an oil light on his grave every year. The Or Shraga and his descendants were rabbis and leaders of the Yazd community for 200 years. His descendants still stand at the helm of the Yazd Jewish community in Eretz Israel. Despite the renown and esteem of the Or Shraga among Persian Jews, so far no Torah writings by him were discovered [known are only two letters on community matters with his signature]. This item is an important discovery which can pour light on his method of study and philosophy. Pasted on the inside of the front cover is part of an envelope in which a letter was sent from the Yazd community to Babylonia, with a poetic flowery inscription. [3], 107, 109-117, 119 leaves (originally: [3], 122 leaves. Lacking leaves 108, 118, 120-122). Leaf 108 is a handwritten replacement. Leaves 120-122 missing at the end are index leaves. 29.5 cm. Fair condition. Stains, wear and tears. Clipped margins, affecting text of glosses in some places. Open tears to several leaves, with restorations and handwritten replacements. Contemporary damaged leather binding. Enclosed is a report identifying the handwriting of the glosses as that of Mula Or Shraga, by Benjamin Richler, former director of the Institute of Microfilmed Hebrew Manuscripts in the National Library of Israel.

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Chiddushei Aggadot Maharam Shick and Ahavat Yehonatan - Dozens of Long Hitherto Unprinted Glosses Handwritten by Rabbi Meir Shapira of Lublin, Creator of the Daf Yomi

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Description: Chiddushei Aggadot Maharam Shick, on Pirkei Avot. Paks, 1890. Bound with: Ahavat Yehonatan on the Haftarot and on Megillat Eichah, by Rabbi Jonathan Eybesch?tz. Warsaw, 1875. On the title page of the first book is a stamp of R. "Meir Shapira Av Beit Din and Rabbi of Pietryka?". Signatures and stamps of R. "Menachem Menis Gold Magid Mesharim of Ternopil" [apparently, the previous owner of the book. The Maharam Shapira lived in his father-in-law's home in Ternopil after his marriage and became friendly with R. Menachem Gold]. Both books contain dozens of glosses in the handwriting of the Maharam Shapira. Impressive especially long glosses of substantial content. Most of them are written in the book Chiddushei Aggadot Maharam Shick. A concentration of so many glosses written by the Maharam Shapira is very scarce. These glosses have not been printed. Rabbi Meir Shapira (1887-1934), Rabbi of Pietryka? and Lublin, head of the Chachmei Lublin Yeshiva, introduced the idea of Daf Yomi, and was one of the founders of Agudat Yisrael and one of the leading rabbis of his times. A young and dominant rabbi, member of the Mo'etzet Gedolei HaTorah, the Maharam Shapira of Lublin was one of the most prominent rabbinical figures of recent generations. His father, R. Ya'akov Shimshon Shapira was a descendant of R. Pinchas of Korets and on his maternal side he was a grandson of R. Shmuel Yitzchak Schorr, author of the Minchat Shai responsa. He was the disciple of leading Galicia rabbis. In his youth, he receive semicha (ordination) from his grandfather the Minchat Shai and R. Meir Arik and also studied by the Maharsham of Berezan. He was also a close Chassid of R. Yisrael Freidman of Chortkov. First, he served in the rabbinates of Golina and Sanok. In 1924, he was appointed Rabbi of Pietryka? and later relocated to the Lublin rabbinate and built his famed Chachmei Lublin Yeshiva. Head of yeshiva, sharp and witty, an outstanding Torah scholar with incredible knowledge of Halacha and Aggadah; gifted lecturer, multifarious achiever and activist, he was a member of the Sejm (Parliament) of the Second Polish Republic. He died without offspring but he himself used to say that he had two children: the Daf Yomi and the Chachmei Lublin Yeshiva. Two books bound together: [8], 95, [3] leaves; 114 leaves. 22 cm. Good-fair condition. Stains, wear and tears. New binding. Enclosed is an expert's report identifying the glosses.

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Leaf Handwritten by Rabbi Chaim Vital - Segulot and Cures for Various Ailments and Practical Kabbalah of Amulet Inscriptions, Incantations and Ktav Malachim

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Description: Manuscript, segulot and cures, amulet inscriptions and incantations (practical kabbalah), handwritten by Rabbi Chaim Vital. [Late 16th-early 17th century]. Leaf written on both sides, two columns per page. Approximately 200 lines handwritten by Rabbi Chaim Vital. Part of a composition of segulot and cures. On the leaf are many inscriptions of segulot and cures for various ailments (such as "bleeding from a wound", "stopping a nose bleed", "for diphtheria”, and more). R. Chaim Vital also writes amulets and incantations, for example, "To stop bleeding - with the blood from his nose write on his forehead Aleph, Gimmel, Lamed and Aleph and it will stop". On this leaf is an amulet-illustration of Ktav Malachim ["angelic script" – a set of symbols used for amulets. Some are copied from the book Yere'im by Rabbi Elazar of Metz, Hilchot Mezuza Siman 400. He writes that these symbols are written on mezuzot for "additional protection for the home". See Mishne Torah L'HaRambam, Hilchot Mezuzah, Chapter 5, Halacha 4, and "Ma'adanei Yom Tov" on Hilchot Mezuzah]. The kabbalist Rabbi Chaim Vital, the Ari's prominent disciple, chosen by the Arizal to copy his teachings, was born in 1543 in Safed which at that time was a spiritual center and drew leading Torah scholars and G-d fearing people led by Rabbi Yosef Karo, author of the Shulchan Aruch. In those illustrious days, the Ramak, Rabbi Shlomo Elkabetz (composer of Lecha Dodi), the Mabit, R. Moshe Alshich were among the Torah giants who resided in Safed. The Maharchu was the disciple of Maharam Alshich in 1557 (at the age of 14) and writes that that same year "R. Yosef Karo instructed my teacher R. Moshe Alshich in the name of an angel that he should be very careful to teach me with all his might". Maharam Alshich also ordained R. Chaim with the authority of the semicha he himself received from R. Yosef Karo. Simultaneously, R. Chaim Vital began studying kabbalah in the Beit Midrash of R. Moshe Cordovero (the Ramak). In 1570, Rabbi Yitzchak Luria, the Ari HaKadosh moved from Egypt to Eretz Israel and settled in Safed. That year, the Ramak died and the Ari succeeded him. The light of the Ari rose in Safed and R. Chaim Vital became his closest disciple and the first authority on the Arizal's kabbalistic teachings. For two years, the Maharchu sat before the Ari and wrote every word which came out of his teacher's mouth. The writings of the Maharchu are the basis of the Ari's teachings which were spread in later generations. The Chida writes (Shem HaGedolim) that Rabbi Chaim Vital did not permit anyone to copy these writings but once he was very ill and the kabbalists bribed his household members to give them 600 leaves of the Maharchu's writings and these were copied in three days by 100 scribes. After the Ari's death, the Maharchu moved to Egypt. He then returned to Eretz Israel and resided some time in Jerusalem until he moved to Damascus and died there in 1620. He wrote the primary teachings of the Ari in his composition Etz Chaim and in Shemonah Perakim which his son Shmuel Vital arranged following his instructions. Although, the Ari authorized only the Maharchua to write and explain his teachings, compositions on his teachings exist which were written by other disciples as well. The leading kabbalists of following generations constantly stressed that the Maharchu is the supreme authority for explaining the Ari's teachings and they warned not to rely on the writings of any other disciple. The Maharchu himself writes in the introduction to his book Etz Chaim: "Know that from the day my teacher began to reveal this wisdom, I did not leave him even for a moment. All you find written in any writings in his name which differs from that which I have written in this book is a definite error because they did not comprehend his words…". The Maharchu endeavored to limit spreading the Ari's teaching and instructed to bury many of his writings of the Ari's teachings in his grave. Only after his death, his writings gained fame in various ways and editions. The scholars of his times performed a "she'elat chalom" and were allowed to remove many leaves from the Maharchu's grave and these served as a basis for other compositions on the Ari's teachings (for more information on this subject, see Kabbalat Ha'Ari by R. Yosef Avivi). Among the books he wrote of the Ari's teachings the following books are best known: Etz Chaim, Shemonah She'arim, Otzrot Chaim, Adam Yashar, Derech Etz Chaim, Pri Etz Chaim, Sha'arei Kedusha, etc. This book of cures by the Maharchu is known by several titles: Sefer HaPe'ulot, Ta'alumot Chochma, Sefer Kabbalah Ma'asit, Sefer HaRefu'ot, Refu'ot U'Segulot. This composition was not printed together with the rest of his writings. Only few sections were printed in books of segulot and cures throughout the years. Recently, it has been printed in full (Sefer HaPe'ulot, Modi'in Illit, 2010). The Chida wrote of the greatness and holiness of R. Chaim Vital that "his soul was very great and cleaner than that of all other people in his times". It is known that he foresaw many events with his ru'ach hakodesh. His amazing visions he documented in his diary which was partially printed under the name, Shivchei R' Chaim Vital and recently has been fully printed in the book Sefer HaChezyonot. Leaf, 19.5 cm. 2 fully written pages. Very good condition. Bound in a new elaborate leather binding.

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Handwritten Volume, Compilation of Compositions of the Arizal's Kabbalah, from the Teachings of Rabbi Israel Sarug - with an Unknown Kabbalistic Composition - Krakow, 1650 - Manuscript Which Belonged to the Chatam Sofer, with Glosses in his Handwriting

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Description: Handwritten volume, compilation of compositions of the Arizal's kabbalah, with teachings of R. Israel Sarug, including an unknown composition. [Krakow], 1650. This manuscript belonged to the Chatam Sofer, who studied it and added several glosses in his own handwriting. Thick volume, in ancient Ashkenazi script. A large compilation of compositions of the Arizal's kabbalistic teachings, including compositions of Rabbi Chaim Vital, of Rabbi Israel Sarug and other works from his Beit Midrash in Italy. The scribe concluded copying the manuscript in 1650 as appears in the colophon on the last page in which he details the compositions which compose the manuscript: "I have concluded writing this sacred book…all according to the Arizal's kabbalah…phenomenal secrets…on Monday Beha'alotcha in 1650…". Apparently, the scribe signed his name but later, the part with his signature was cut off by one of the owners and the name of the scribe was lost. On leaves 135-154 is a composition on the four expressions of redemption, which the scribe in the colophon refers to as "explanation of the article and the matter of Ya'akov with the ladder". According to the expert R. Yosef Avivi, this homily is unknown from any other manuscript. The scribe of the manuscript added many marginalia with content attesting to his extensive kabbalistic knowledge. He corrects the text and compares it to another manuscript in his possession from which he copied the compositions. On pages 22/b, 23/a, 68/a and 96/b are notes by "A.K" - R. Alexander Katz of Frankfurt, disciple of R. Israel Sarug [during his stay in Frankfurt]. The glosses starting with the letters "A.K." verify that this compilation was from the teachings of R. Israel Sarug, passed on to R. Alexander Katz (for further information see: Avivi, Kabbalat HaAri, from p. 433). On page 45/b is a notation on the text itself, beginning with "It seems to me, Avraham", evidently written by the scribe who copied the manuscript. Ashkenazi kabbalists took an important part in editing the Arizal's writings as shown by Avivi (in his book Kabbalat HaAri, ibid). In a letter from Eretz Israel, the Shla writes to R. Shmuel son or R. Meshulam Rabbi of Przemy?l, in response to his request to send him a copy of the Arizal's writings, that "my mechutan, R. Alexander Katz… of Frankfurt" possesses many manuscripts and he notes that "he has in his possession all the homilies which exist in Eretz Israel". In the 17th century, Krakow was a kabbalistic stronghold, residence of venerable kabbalists including R. Natan Neta Shapira, author of Megale Amukot and R. Yoel Sirkis, author of Bayit Chadash [the Bach]. In 1650, the year in which this manuscript was written, R. Meir Poppers lived in Krakow and edited the well-known books Derech Etz Chaim, Pri Etz Chaim and Nof Etz Chaim. According to the opinion of R. Yosef Avivi, the handwriting of this manuscript is very similar to manuscripts copied in Krakow at that time and apparently was also copied there. On the front flyleaf is an ancient signature: "Moshe Ya'akov son of R. Kopil son of R. Hirsh". Under that signature is a signature of R. Shimon Sofer Rabbi of Erlau, author of Hitorerut Teshuva, which was signed during the year of mourning for his father, author of Ktav Sofer. On the preceding leaf is an ownership inscription that the manuscript belongs to Rabbi Avraham Shmuel Binyamin Sofer, author of the Ktav Sofer. The author of the Ktav Sofer inherited this manuscript from his father, the Chatam Sofer [see enclosed authorization]. In addition to glosses by the copier, it contains several glosses in a later writing. Subsequent to careful examination, the handwriting of several corrections was definitely identified as belonging to the Chatam Sofer [see details in enclosed authorization]. Although the Chatam Sofer was primarily celebrated in his capacity as posek of thousands of responsa and as head of a yeshiva and venerable leader, he was also an acclaimed kabbalist, amazingly proficient in its wisdom. His two illustrious teachers, Rabbi Natan Adler and Rabbi Pinchas HaLevi Horwitz, author of the Hafla'ah were leading kabbalists and he learned much kabbalah from them. A smattering of his knowledge in this area can be perceived in a number of places in his writings and responsa, in which he mentions kabbalistic thoughts, but he mostly studied this wisdom privately or with selected disciples. The Chatam Sofer owned an important collection of Kabbalistic manuscripts as affirmed by his grandson Rabbi Shlomo Sofer Rabbi of Bergsa? (Berehove) (Chut HaMeshulash HeChadash, Jerusalem 2000, pp. 55-56). In Likutei Chatam Sofer Responsa (London, Inyanim Shonim, Siman 74), is a copy of a notation by the Chatam Sofer on a siddur of the Arizal, a manuscript in his possession. This notation is mentioned in his letter to the author of Yismach Moshe (Chatam Sofer Responsa 197; Heshiv Moshe Responsa 15). This item is a Kabbalistic manuscript, studied by the Chatam Sofer and enhanced with his notations. This manuscript joins documentation of two more Kabbalistic manuscripts possessed by the Chatam Sofer. See items 48-49. 146, 148-149, 152-154, 157-182, 185-221 leaves (lacking leaves 150-151, 155-156, 183-184. Total of 6 leaves). 19 cm. Good-fair condition. Most leaves are in good condition, some in fair condition. Stains and wear. Worming to several leaves. Some detached leaves. Contemporary binding, damaged, lacking and partially detached. Enclosed: 1. Article on the content of the manuscript, by R. Yosef Avivi. 2. Expert's report identifying the notations in the handwriting of the Chatam Sofer. 3. Authorization that the manuscript of the Chatam Sofer was inherited by his son, author of the Ktav Sofer and by his grandson Rabbi Shimon Sofer Rabbi of Erlau.

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Manuscript, Kol Barama - Commentary on the Idra Rabba, by Rabbi Ya'akov Tzemach - 18th Century - Kabbalistic Manuscript Which Belonged to the Chatam Sofer

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Description: Manuscript, Kol Barama, commentary on the Idra Rabba, according to the writings of the Ari and his disciple Rabbi Chaim Vital, by Rabbi Ya'akov Tzemach. [Europe, 18th century]. This manuscript was owned by the Chatam Sofer. Later it was owned by the kabbalist Rabbi Daniel Frish of Jerusalem [author of Matok M'Dvash], who added to it his handwritten notes. Neat Ashkenazi script. Complete manuscript (without title page), contains a commentary on the Idra Rabba [not on the Idra Zuta]. The version of the Idra Rabba appears in enlarged letters in the center surrounded by the commentary written in smaller letters. This manuscript belonged to R. Moshe Sofer, Rabbi of Pressburg and author of the Chatam Sofer, and it was passed in his family estate. A picture of part of the manuscript appears in the book Minhagei Rabboteinu V'Halichotehem - Rabbeinu HeChatam Sofer [edited by Rabbi Akiva Menachem Sofer Rabbi of Erlau], Jerusalem 2011, p. 526. Enclosed is an authorization of the provenance of the manuscript by R. Shimon Sofer Rabbi of Erlau, who attests that the manuscript was inherited from his father, the Ktav Sofer, who inherited it from his father, the Chatam Sofer. Although the Chatam Sofer was primarily celebrated in his capacity as posek of thousands of responsa and as head of a yeshiva and venerable leader, he was also an acclaimed kabbalist, amazingly proficient in its wisdom. His two illustrious teachers, R. Natan Adler and R. Pinchas HaLevi Horwitz, author of the Hafla'ah were leading kabbalists and he learned much kabbalah from them. The Chatam Sofer owned an important collection of Kabbalistic manuscripts as affirmed by his grandson R. Shlomo Sofer Rabbi of Bergsa? (Berehove) (Chut HaMeshulash HeChadash, Jerusalem 2000, pp. 55-56). A manuscript of the Arizal's teaching owned by the Chatam Sofer. See Items 47 and 49. This copy was in the possession of the kabbalist Rabbi Daniel Frish (1935-2005), author of the commentary Matok M'Dvash on the Zohar, who wrote on the front flyleaf: "This manuscript has whole passages which are not found in the printed version, and also many corrections and variations and notations, and it has been of great assistance to me while studying the version printed in Korets in 1785, Daniel Frish…". In many places in the manuscript, R. Daniel Frish notes the variations from the version printed in Korets 1785. For example, at the top of Leaf 1, he writes: "Here are 51 rules and in the printed version there are only 33 and there are many additions here". The kabbalist Rabbi Ya'akov Tzemach of Jerusalem, a leading editor of the writings of R. Chaim Vital [Maharchu] and the teachings of the Arizal. After immigrating to Jerusalem from Damascus in 1643, he began to re-edit his commentary on the Idra and added many sections after finding writings of R. Chaim Vital in Jerusalem containing many novellae. He named this commentary Kol Barama. At the beginning of this manuscript is the author's preface which ends with: "Here in Jerusalem, 5 days of the month of Menachem 1643 Ya'akov son of Chaim Tzemach" (this passage, which does not appear in the printed edition, is part of a longer preface which appears in other manuscripts of this composition. See: Yosef Avivi, Kabbalat Ha'Ari, Vol. 2, pp. 588, 658-662). 169 leaves. 21 cm. Good condition. Stains. Dark stains and faded ink on few pages. Damaged binding.

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Leaf in the Handwriting of the Chatam Sofer - Documentation of a Kabbalistic Manuscript in his Possession - Signed by his Grandson Rabbi Shimon Sofer, Rabbi of Erlau

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Description: Leaf with an inscription handwritten by R. Moshe Sofer, author of the Chatam Sofer, with the signature of his grandson R. Shimon Sofer, Rabbi of Erlau. Two handwritten lines, identified as the handwriting of the Chatam Sofer: "Sefer Otzrot Chaim by the Ari and at the end notation of Kol HaRamaz". Evidently this leaf is a flyleaf of the kabbalistic composition Otzrot Chaim about the Arizal's teachings [by R. Chaim Vital], owned by the Chatam Sofer, to which he added a handwritten inscription that served as a title page of the manuscript. Directly after the handwritten lines of the Chatam Sofer, is the signature of R. Shimon Sofer, Rabbi of Erlau, author of Hitorerut Teshuva, grandson of the Chatam Sofer, who apparently inherited the manuscript from his father and grandfather. Although the Chatam Sofer was primarily celebrated in his capacity as posek of thousands of responsa and as head of a yeshiva and venerable leader, he was also an acclaimed kabbalist, amazingly proficient in its wisdom. His two illustrious teachers, R. Natan Adler and R. Pinchas HaLevi Horwitz, author of the Hafla'ah were leading kabbalists and he learned much kabbalah from them. A smattering of his knowledge in this area can be perceived in a number of places in his writings and responsa, in which he mentions kabbalistic thoughts, but he mostly studied this wisdom privately or with selected disciples. The Chatam Sofer owned an important collection of Kabbalistic manuscripts as affirmed by his grandson Rabbi Shlomo Sofer, Rabbi of Bergsa? (Berehove) (Chut HaMeshulash HeChadash, Jerusalem 2000, pp. 55-56). This handwritten leaf joins two other Kabbalistic manuscripts possessed by the Chatam Sofer - see items 47-48. Leaf, 20 cm. Good condition. Stains, wear to margins. Enclosed is an expert's report identifying the handwriting of the Chatam Sofer.

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Manuscript, Siddur Kavanot Ha'Ari - 18th Century

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Description: A complete and unique manuscript of Siddur Kavanot Ha'Ari, with Kabbalistic commentaries and kavanot, according to the editing of R. M. Poppers. Contains: Prayers for weekdays and Shabbat, for festivals and the High Holidays, study and Tikun Chatzot, kavanot for the Passover Haggadah, Sefirat Ha'Omer and Hakafot. Commentary for Shabbat songs, etc. [Europe (Russia-Poland?), 18th century]. Especially elegant Ashkenazi handwriting. Cursive calligraphic script, with square semi-cursive script. Illustrations of LaMenatze'ach menorahs and various kabbalistic charts.  Many glosses in "windows" inside the text. In several places "Custom of my Teacher Mahariv" [Rabbi Yisrael Binyamin] is mentioned. It seems that the scribe was himself a Mekubal. At the margins of the leaves he added glosses; some of them open with the words "In Mishnat Chassidim he wrote…". The Arizal did not write his kabbalistic kavanot; the disciples of his disciples arranged the kavanot according to the teachings of the Ari and his disciple Rabbi Chaim Vital. Rabbi Meir Poppers (died in 1662) composed the arrangement of the kavanot which was the basis for the manuscripts of the Siddur Ha'ari which were spread in Ashkenazi countries [according to those handwritten siddurim, Siddur Rabbi Asher and Siddur Ha'Ari-Kol Ya'akov were printed in the 18th century]. This is an early copy of Siddur Kavanot containing additions and revisions which do not appear in other siddurim. The style of writing (design of the letters) of this siddur is slightly similar to the manuscripts of the Kabbalist Rabbi Shabtai of Raszk?w, who was among the holy scribes who wrote sifrei Torah, tefillin and mezuzot for the Ba'al Shem Tov and his disciples with transcendent yichudim and kavanot and the Ba'al Shem Tov requested that they copy kabbalistic books for his use. Apparently, this manuscript was written at that time [see Kedem Catalog, Auction 42, Item 20]. 1-160 leaves. Approximately 19.5 cm. High-quality paper. Fair condition. Worming and wear, restored with paper filling. Wear and stains. Ancient reconstructed leather binding.

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