Auction 57 - Judaica - Books, Manuscripts, Rabbinical Letters, Ceremonial Art

Manuscript - "Va'Adaber Shalom", to Increase Peace in the World, by Rabbi Menashe of Ilya - Autograph of the Author

Opening: $6,000
Sold for: $7,500
Including buyer's premium
Manuscript, Sefer Va'Adaber Shalom, by R. Menashe of Ilya. [Smarhon or Ilya, 1829].
Handwritten by the author - R. Menashe of Ilya, student of the Gaon of Vilna. Unpublished work.
On the first page, R. Menashe writes that the purpose of this work is to increase peace in the world: "Sefer Va'Adaber Shalom, as its name suggests, seeks to increase peace in the world, since all the evil in the world is due to dispute and strife, and the ultimate purpose of the world cannot be reached while in a state of discord. G-d is waiting for us to do our part in this matter…" The author further discusses his intent to publish the book, "bit by bit, as its words are accepted", but the work was never published.
R. Menashe of Ilya (1767-1831), was a renowned Lithuanian genius who was considered among the greatest students of the Gaon of Vilna, on par with R. Chaim of Volozhin. He officiated as the rabbi of Samorgan (Smarhon) for a short time, but left the post due to his opposition to community officials who complied with the Cantonist decree. His student R. Aryeh Leib Shapira became rabbi in his stead. R. Menashe was known for his unique and individualistic approach to many topics, both in the study of Torah and in more worldly matters. His works deal with "tikkun olam" - enabling our physical world to actualize its spiritual potential. His first book, "Pesher Davar" (Vilna, 1807), promotes peace between Jewish leaders, and his current work, "Va'Adaber Shalom", also discusses maintaining peace between fellow men. R. Menashe's purpose was to create peace between the Chassidim and Mitnagdim of his generation. His students include: R. Leibel Shapira of Kovno, R. Aryeh Leib Hominer of Minsk, (author of "Ba'er Hetev"), R. David Luria - the Radal, and R. Shlomo Zalman Rivlin of Shklov.
A description of this work is found in a letter sent in 1878 from Konigsberg to Shmuel Yosef Finn in Vilna, with an offer to acquire this manuscript and other manuscripts by R. Menashe. The writer of the letter affirms that the manuscript is an autograph of the author, with identical handwriting to that found in letters signed by R. Menashe. (See: R. David Kamenetzky, Yeshurun vol. XX, pp. 800-801, for a copy of the letter).
The handwriting is identical to that of R. Menashe's glosses at the beginning of the manuscript "Et Sofer" on the Radak (Vilna, 1827). Those glosses are identified as handwritten by R. Menashe by his relative, R. Yosef Mazel of Vyazin (near Ilya).
The last page contains a handwritten inscription by a student of R. Menashe: "Nathan Nata Pure Heart (Reinherz), Nissan 1862".
[3] leaves (and another blank leaf; altogether five written pages). 21 cm. Good condition. Stains. Several tears; one instance of slight textual damage. New binding.
Expert authentication of the handwriting is included.
The Vilna Gaon and his disciples
The Vilna Gaon and his disciples