Auction 63 - Rare and Important Items

Letter of Torah Thoughts from Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Auerbach to Rabbi Yosef Shalom Elyashiv – Congratulations upon the Marriage of his Daughter to Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky "Who is Great in Torah and Fear of G-d"

Opening: $1,000
Estimate: $1,500 - $2,000
Sold for: $2,000
Including buyer's premium
Lengthy letter (approx. 52 lines) handwritten and signed by R. Shlomo Zalman Auerbach. [Jerusalem, Kislev 1951].
Addressed to his friend R. Yosef Shalom Elyashiv – "To my dear friend, the true Torah scholar R. Yosef Shalom Elyashiv". The letter opens with congratulation for the marriage of his eldest daughter to R. Chaim Kanievsky: "I hereby wish him Mazal Tov on the occasion of the marriage of his daughter to one who is great in Torah and fear of G-d, and I bless him with heart and soul that G-d should grant him much joy and satisfaction from them and all his descendants".
Most of the letter consists of Torah deliberations on the topics of Terumot and Maaserot (laws of tithing). R. Shlomo Zalman thanks him for perusing his book Maadanei Eretz and sending him his comments on these topics: "…I thank him wholeheartedly for acceding to my request and enlightening my eyes with his straight and insightful words, nevertheless, I see fit to make the following comments…".
The letter concludes with further words of appreciation, and a request "to continue studying my book in his spare time and comment on it, whether orally or in writing". R. Shlomo Zalman expresses his discomfiture on the fact that R. Elyashiv sent him payment for the book Maadanei Eretz, yet since he knows the latter will not accept the money in return, he is only sending the change, and will discuss the matter with him face to face at a later time.
R. Shlomo Zalman Auerbach (1910-1995) was the dean of the Kol Torah Yeshiva and leading posek of his times. In his youth, R. Shlomo Zalman was a household member of R. Zelig Reuven Bengis, head of the Eda HaCharedit, where he befriended R. Yosef Shalom Elyashiv, who was also a disciple of R. Bengis and frequenter of his home. The elderly scholar cherished the two young scholars and held them in great esteem, predicting them a future as leading halachic authorities of the generation. In time, R. Shlomo Zalman indeed became one of the leading poskim and the foremost authority in several halachic areas, such as medicine in halacha. His pleasant ways and refinement earnt him the veneration of all sects of Orthodox Judaism, which was expressed at his funeral attended by some 300,000 people.
R. Shlomo Zalman Auerbach's connection with R. Yosef Shalom Elyashiv extended over a period of sixty years, and they often conferred with each other on halachic and public matters which were on the agenda. Several years after this letter was written, they became related by marriage when R. Shlomo Zalman's son R. Azriel Auerbach married R. Yosef Shalom's (fifth) daughter.
[1] leaf, written on both sides. 25 cm. Good condition. Folding marks and light wear.
Published in Yeshurun, 28, pp. 327-328, see ibid. for other correspondence from 1951-1952.
Lithuanian Rabbis of the Past Generation – Manuscripts, Letters and Signatures