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Lot 273: (BENVENISTE, CHAIM BEN ISRAEL). Keneseth Hagedolah

Fine Judaica

by Kestenbaum & Company

November 29, 2007

New York, NY, USA

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Description: (BENVENISTE, CHAIM BEN ISRAEL). Keneseth Hagedolah [novellae to Tur and Shulchan Aruch Even Ha-Ezer]. Manuscript copy in the hand of Rabbi Yisrael Yaakov b. Samuel of Sofi a of this important Halachic work. 282 leaves. Sephardic cursive script, in two columns. Some staining, two pages loose. Modern vellum-backed boards. Folio. Sofi a (Bulgaria), 1791-92.

Notes: Manuscript copy of a work first published in Izmir in 1731. This study of Even Ha-ezer is the rarest of a multi-volume treatise by Chaim Benveniste in which he methodically analyzes all the determinations found in the responsa and halachic works of the outstanding authorites of the post-Karo era. The Keneseth Hagedolah was highly regarded by both Sephardic and Aschkenazic codifi ers as an authoritive work of great practical value. Indeed, Chaim Joseph David Azulai famously stipulated in his Shem Ha'gedolim, that no decision should be rendered without first consulting it. The scribe of this manuscript writes: "For many years my soul has yearned to acquire this volume at any price, but it was impossible to obtain. Therefore I have decded to transcribe it for my use." Hebrew manuscripts from Bulgaria are most uncommon.

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