Books, Manuscripts, Rabbinical Letters Books, Manuscripts & Rabbinical Letters

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The Auction was held on 02/04/14

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Auction 37 Lot Number 197

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Long Letter by Rabbi Shlomo Sofer Rabbi of Berehove – About the Establishment of Kollel Mukacheve

Long interesting letter, handwritten and signed by Rabbi Shlomo Sofer Av Beit Din of Berehove [son of the Ktav Sofer], to Rabbi Moshe Greenwald Av Beit Din of Khust, author of Arugot HaBosem. Elul 1907.
Polemic letter full of pain, against the assembly of rabbis and gaba'im in Mukacheve. In the letter, Rabbi Sofer discusses the aims and appropriate management of the funds of Rabbi Meir Ba'al HaNess. He also refers to the activities of Kollel Poland and other Kollels.
On the 17th of Elul 1907, an assembly took place in Mukacheve, initiated by Rebbe Zvi Hirsh Shapira Av Beit Din of Mukacheve, author of Darkei Teshuva. At this meeting, (Chassidic) rabbis of ten communities gathered: Khust, Mukacheve, Sosnove, etc. to makes changes to the collection of "Eretz Yisrael funds" by establishing a new kollel, "Kollel Mukacheve and ten regions". This was an act of defiance against Kollel Ungarin (Hungary), which was presided over by the disciples of the Chatam Sofer and his followers. This item is a historic letter from the great polemic which arose at that time, with complaints of underhanded opportunism disregarding a good many of the rabbis of the region who were not invited to the assembly.
Rabbi Shlomo Sofer (1853-1930), the Ktav Sofer's son, served in the Berehove rabbinate from 1884 and was one of the leading rabbis in his days. Printed the book Igrot Sofrim and the book Chut HaMeshulash about the history of the Chatam Sofer and his son the Ktav Sofer. Rabbi Shlomo Sofer belonged to the school of the Chatam Sofer who had the custom of praying according to Nusach Ashkenaz and he had many disagreements with the Chassidic rabbis in his country.
Official stationery, 22.5 cm. 2 written pages, more than 60 handwritten lines. Good condition, stains.

Opening1,800$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 28

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Miniature Siddur – Amsterdam, 1739

Siddur for everyday use and for festivals, according to the Sephardic custom. Amsterdam, [1739].
Particularly miniature edition. Composed of two parts. Part 1 for every day and Shabbat use. Part 2 (with separate title page) for festivals.
On the reverse side of title page, the publisher, Naftali Hertz HaLevi writes, "In Amsterdam, I have seen a miniature siddur with small lettering without vowels, and youngsters cannot read the text when praying. I felt their discomfort and have printed this siddur… in the smallest volume ever printed in thin small letters with new and attractive vowels…".
Handsome copy with original elaborate binding. 318 leaves. 6 cm. Very good condition. Few stains. Gilded edges. Minor damages to binding.
See the Bibliography Institute CD, Listing 0306843 for differences among the various copies of this siddur.

Opening1,800$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 160

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Collection of Letters – Rachmastrivka 

Collection of letters, documents and leaves, by Rachmastrivka rebbes.
• Letters sent to Rebbe Mordechai Twersky from 1904-1914. • Divorce agreement of Rabbi Aryeh ben Rabbi Mordechai from Rebbetzin Shaindel bat Rabbi Ze'ev. 190-. • New Year blessing in rhyme with the acrostic Mordechai sent to the rebbe [apparently in the handwriting of the rebbe's son Rabbi Pinchas Twersky from Ustilla]. • Bunch of documents about the guardianship of the estate of Rebbe Ze'ev Twersky who died in Jerusalem in 1937 (father-in-law of the author of Imrei Chaim of Vizhnitz).
10 items, varied size and condition.

Opening1,800$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 90

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Rabbeinu Yerucham – Venice, 1553

Toldot Adam V'Chava – Sefer Mesharim, by Rabbeinu Yerucham. Venice, 1553. Bragadin printing. Second edition. Separate title page for Sefer Mesharim.
Signatures and ownership inscriptions in Oriental handwriting: "Shlomo ben Shmuel Florentin" [Thessaloniki rabbi] and ownership stamps.
16, 13-238, 2-104 leaves. 29 cm. Good-fair condition. Moth damages and stains. Copy composed of two copies. Fancy leather binding.

Opening2,000$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 299

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Derech Emuna – Copy of Author Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, with Handwritten Glosses and Corrections

Derech Emuna, commentary on Mishne Torah L'HaRambam, Seder Zera'im, Part 2 [Hilchot Terumot]. Rabbi Shemaryahu Yosef Chaim Kanievsky. Bnei Brak, [1994]. Second edition.
The copy of the author, Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, with his signature on the leaf before the title page "From the books of Chaim Kanievsky". Written on the book leaves are more than 30 glosses in his handwriting, some comments on the content and some corrections. In one gloss he writes, "…But I have heard that the opinion of my teacher, my father-in-law is that… and my opinion is void". The glosses and corrections were not included in the third edition [with additions and corrections] which we have seen.
[8], 374, [5] pages. 22 cm. Good-very good condition. Signatures, stamps and other inscriptions. Stain and glue reinforcement on forsatz leaves. Minor damage to binding.

Opening2,000$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 91

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Rabbi Eliyahu Mizrachi Responsa – Constantinople, 1559-1561

"Responsa by Rabbi Elya [!] Mizrachi and rabbis of Spain, France and Germany who lived in the time of the Rabbi and a few of the halachot which were discussed in his yeshiva". Constantinople, [1559-1561]. Printed by Shlomo Ya'avetz. First edition.
This book is one of the basic books of responsa and in addition to the responsa of Rabbi Eliyahu Mizrachi (the Re'em) the book also includes responsa from the Torah scholars of his generation, such as Rabbi Tam ebn Yechiya, Rabbi Elya HaLevi, Rabbi Moshe Elshakar, Rabbi Ya'akov ebn Chaviv and many others.
The printing of the book began in the month of Tishrei 1560 as written on the title page, and was finished in the month of Sivan 1561. Leaves 109-110 were omitted from this copy as from most copies of this book [with the first part of Responsum 66: "The ruling that Rabbi Elya Mizrachi sent in Kendia for his son Rabbi Gershon" where he was slandered "that he converted from Judaism and remained in "shmad" for four years"].
94, 91-106, [2], 111-118, [38] leaves, total of [158] leaves. 28 cm. Good-fair condition. Stains. Restored tears to title page. Ownership inscriptions, short glosses and marks to book leaves. Leather binding, slightly damaged.

Opening2,300$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 84

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Chiddushei Rashba on Tractate Gittin – Venice, 1523

Chiddushei Gittin by the Rashba. [Venice]. 1523. Daniel Bomberg printing press.
133 leaves. 24 cm. Good condition. The book leaves were rinsed and the moth damages were professionally restored. Ownership inscriptions and stamp. New binding.
Printed simultaneously with three other books: Chiddushei Brachot and Chiddushei Chulin of the Rashba and Chiddushei Bava Batra by the Ramban. These four books are called "Chiddushei Arba Shitot L'HaRashba V'Ramban". See next item.

Opening2,300$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 101

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Menashe ben Yisrael – Conciliador – Three Volumes

Conciliador [conciliator], by Rabbi Menashe ben Yisrael. Three parts [1-3] in three volumes. Frankfurt – Amsterdam, [1633-1650]. Part 1 is in Latin, 2 and 3 are in Spanish.
The composition Conciliator which was written by Menashe ben Yisrael was one of his greatest achievements. This work which he wrote in Spanish was primarily intended for Christian learned and religious people, to enable them to understand Judaism according to verses in the Bible and the explanation of sections which seem contradictory. Moreover, the composition was intended to strengthen the faith and the principles of Judaism in the midst of the Anusim. The book was highly successful and was translated into several languages and spread the name of Menashe ben Yisrael in the midst of non-Jewish scholars and honoraries.
Three volumes, approximately 19 cm. Overall good condition.

Opening2,500$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 263

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Manuscript on the 613 Mitzvot, Kanizsa 1802

Manuscript, complete work on the 613 mitzvot, Ashkenazi handwriting (Hungary).
Ownership inscriptions from 1802 of Rabbi "Moshe Blau" from the city of Kanizsa (Hungary).
Approximately 89 written pages. 30.5 cm. Good-fair condition, wear and ink damages. Unbound.

Opening3,000$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 147

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Historical Letter Concerning the Establishment of Slonim Hassidism in 1858

Important historical letter by the prominent Chassid Rabbi Yosef Deltisher, who urges Chassidim to come to Slonim for High Holy Days, in honor of the coronation of Rebbe Rabbi Avraham Weinberg author of Yesod HaAvoda, Av 1858.
During the year after the demise of the mentor and leader, the great Rebbe Rabbi Moshe of Kobryn, the majority of Lachowitz-Kobryn
Chassidim followed the esteemed leader Rabbi Avraham Weinberg of Slonim (and the minority followed the Rebbes of Lachowitz, Kobryn and Koidanov). In this unknown letter Rabbi Yossel relates that the majority of the Chassidim will congregate for Rosh Hashanah and the following festivals by “our dear Rabbi Avraham of Slonim … he desires that they congregate there…”. He poignantly writes in opposition of the Rabbi of Koidanov and members of Chabbad.
The holy Rabbi Yosef of Dzialoszyce (passed away that year in Slonim, in Tishrei 1858, Encyclopedia L'Chassidut, Vol. 2, p. 108), among the great Chassidim in Lithuania, close associate of Rabbi Mordechai and his son Rabbi Noach of Lachowitz. Among the most prominent Chassidim of Rabbi Moshe of Kobryn and his disciple Rabbi Avraham of Slonim. A holy and humble man to which miracles and revelations of the Holy Spirit are attributed.
Leaf. 21 cm. Poor condition, missing part of letter, tears. Stains. + 2 leaves –a copy of the content of the letter upon stationery of Slonim Kollel in Jerusalem [1930s].
Unsigned and unknown letter. Attached is a photocopy of a different version of the same letter [“censored” from harsh expressions which appear in this original letter], signed “Yosef son of the deceased Rabbi Binyanim of Dzialoszyce.

Opening3,500$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 258

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Pamphlet in the Handwriting of Rabbi Wolf Hamburg with Glosses in the Handwriting of his Rabbi the Maharzach

Pamphlet with long halachic responsum concerning the law of marriage of a maidservant, by Rabbi Avraham Binyamin Wolf Hamburg, signed with the acronym "Ohev". Autographic writing of the author with erasures, additions and glosses and additions in the handwriting of his rabbi the Maharzach – Rabbi Meshulam Zalman Cohen. [Furth, c. 1800].
Rabbi Wolf (Avraham Binyamin Wolf) Hamburg (1770-1850), one of the leading rabbis in Germany who did not spare effort or financial resources in opposing the Reform Movement. Foremost disciple of the Maharzach Rabbi Meshulam Zalman Cohen (1739-1820), Av Beit Din and Head of the Fürth Yeshiva, author of Bigdei Kehuna. While his teacher was still alive, Rabbi Wolf succeeded him as head of the yeshiva, a position he held for many decades until the Reformists took control of community life and prevented the appointment of an Orthodox rabbi after the death of the Maharzach. They even applied to the government who expelled over 100 Torah students from the city and closed the yeshiva. He wrote the books Sha'ar Zekeinim and Simlat Binyamin. Among his better known disciples are Rabbi Yitzchak Dov Bamberger Av Beit Din and Rabbi of Würzburg. (See biographical article in Yeshurun, Vol 7, pp. 739-759. See more information about him in Ishim B'Tshuvot Chatam Sofer, pp. 39-40).
8 pages, 34.5 cm. Greenish paper, good-fair condition, stains, wear damage (restored).

Opening3,800$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 195

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Letter by Rabbi Yehudah Assad – Semnitz, 1845

Letter by Rabbi Yehudah Assad to Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Ullmann. Av Beit Din of Makó author of Yeriot Shlomo. Semnitz, 1845.
Two-page lengthy letter containing Divrei Torah, in handwriting and with signature of Rabbi Yehudah Assad. At the beginning of the letter Rabbi Yehudah Assad writes: “… blessed is G-d who saved him from murderer… and I have immediately copied his language from this letter and sent it to two great rabbis in order to publicize his righteousness and inform them of the lie…”.
Holy Ga’on Rabbi Yehudah Assad (1796-1866), among leading Torah giants and Rashei Yeshivot of Hungary. Disciple of Rabbi Aharon Suditz and Rabbi Mordechai [Maharam] Bennet. Served in rabbinate of Semnitz and Serdahely. Appointed to rabbinate by the Chatam Sofer. His books include: Rabbi Yehudah Assad Responsa - Yehudah YaAleh, Chidushim of Rabbi Yehudah Assad on the Shas, writings of Rabbi Yehudah Assad on the Torah.
Recipient of letter, Ga’on Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Ullman (1792-1863), author of Yeriot Shlomo Responsa, among greatest rabbis of Hungary; appointed to rabbinate by the endeavor of the Chatam Sofer and served in the rabbinate ofMakó. Led the Hungarian Orthodox Jewry together with Rabbi Yehudah Assad and the Ktav Sofer.
This letter was printed in Rabbi Yehudah Assad Responsa – Yehudah YaAleh (clause 23), in an edited version, with omission of several passages which appear in this letter, for example, the opening paragraph (quoted above), of which the matter to which it refers is not clear to us.
Two handwritten pages. 23 cm. Fair condition. Tears from ink singeing, with damage to text. Wear and folding marks. Sent by mail (address listing and postmark on back of letter).

Opening5,000$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 83

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Derech Emuna – Constantinople, 1521

Derech Emuna, philosophical investigations of faith. Rabbi Avraham ben Rabbi Shem Tov Ben-Bivgi. [Constantinople], 1521. First edition. Many glosses and inscriptions in ancient Oriental handwriting.
[106] leaves. 26.5 cm. Good-varying condition, stains and minor damages. Restored damages to last leaf.
Colophon on last page: "This book has been completely printed in Cheshvan 1521".

Opening5,000$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 10

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Keter Aram Tzova – Book of Psalms – Elaborate Facsimile on Parchment

Keter Aram Tzova – Facsimile edition of the Book of Psalms of Keter Aram Tzova – the most important manuscript of the Bible, part of which was saved after the Aleppo pogroms against the Jews in 1947, and smuggled to Eretz Israel.
Signed and numbered edition. Published by Y. L. Magnes, The Hebrew University, Jerusalem. Copy no. 4 of only four copies!
Elaborate facsimile faithful to the original source, printed on parchment. Introductory page in Hebrew, [29] facsimile pages. Red leather binding. Matching box. Excellent condition.
The profits from the sale of this item will be donated to charity, to a recognized non-profit organization chosen by the buyer according to the following specifications: If the item is sold for the opening price, 20% will be donated to charity. Any amount above the opening price will be entirely donated to charity.

Opening5,000$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 252

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Large Collection – Remnants of Leaves – Egypt and Turkey, 18th-19th Centuries

Large varied collection of remnants of handwritten leaves removed from the "Binding Geniza". [Egypt, Thessaloniki and Turkey, 18th-19th centuries].
Contains remnants of unidentified works of several writings. A composition on the weekly Torah portions, a composition on the laws of Yoreh Deah and sections of a eulogy (autographic writing of the author) of an unknown individual.
Large collection of remnants of letters, writs and bills from Egypt, Turkey and the Balkan communities. Ladino and Hebrew. Among the leaves is a halachic ruling signed in Egypt from the 18th century; a letter from 1741 to "My son…the fine young man… Reuven", signed "Your father, Ya'akov"; letters sent from Egypt, Izmir and Constantinople to Thessaloniki and Candia; letters to the members of the Abarbanel family in Thessaloniki; and more. Many signatures. An important collection. Not thoroughly examined.
Approximately 80 leaf remnants. Varying size. Various states of damage as a result of binding.

Opening6,000$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 298

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Shulchan Aruch – The Copy From which the Chazon Ish Studied – with Handwritten Glosses by the Chazon Ish

Shulchan Aruch, Choshen Mishpat, section II (laws 133-426), including Netivot HaMishpat and Ketzot HaChoshen. Lemberg, 1876.
This copy belonged to Rabbi Avraham Yeshaya Karelitz author of Chazon Ish. Pages contain several concise glosses of corrections and critique (“not understood”, “not listed in Shach” and more), as well as lengthy erudite gloss, in the holy handwriting of the Chazon Ish.
Ga’on Rabbi Avraham Yeshaya Karelitz (1879-1954), genius of Halachah and philosophy of our generation. Phenomenal Torah giant and concealed Tzaddik. Published his first book Chazon Ish anonymously in 1911, and from then on was referred to by the name of his book. After World War I resided in Vilnius. The Ga’on Rabbi Chaim Ozer who recognized his greatness insisted that he join the public leadership of the Jewish people, and upon his immigration to Eretz Israel in 1933 addressed to him many rulings pertaining to the leadership of the Torah settlement in Eretz Israel. Reinforced the observance of Laws and Customs of the Land of Eretz Israel and initiated the revival of Torah and Chassidism of our generation. Authored and published the dozens of Chazon Ish books which were written with supreme travail, on almost all matters of the six sections of the Mishnah.
[1], 163 leaves; 152 [1] leaves; 28, [8] pages. 45 cm. Dry paper, good-fair condition, slight tears. Original leather binding

Opening9,000$ Unsold

Auction 37 Lot Number 143

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Sefer HaMidot V’Shmot HaTzaddkim – Copy of the books of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov – Oriental handwriting – Aleppo, C. 1850

Manuscript, Sefer HaMidot by Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, including a pamphlet of names of tzaddikim and an abridgement of Likutei Moharan ending with Likutei Segulot, from Holech Tamim V'Poel Tzedek by Rebbe Avraham ben Rabbi Yeshaya Dayan (Livorno, 1850). Also a copy of the booklet Zichron Divrei Eretz - annals of our city, Aleppo. Especially handsome Oriental writing. [Aleppo, later than 1850].
Owners' [and author?] signature: "Avraham Yosef Avraham Pinchas". Later inscriptions with the addition of segulot, lots, and more. With the signature of the author's son "Yitzchak Avraham Yosef Avraham Pinchas"signed in 1878.
This item exposes an interesting phenomenon of Oriental replication of Breslov Chassidic books at that early time in which the teachings of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov had not yet spread to Oriental countries [according to the Bibliography Institute, no books of Rabbi Nachman had been printed in Oriental lands]. Rabbi Natan of Breslov, disciple of Rabbi Nachman on his way to Eretz Israel sojourned to Israel through Istanbul, Lebanon and Alexandria and wherever he traversed he disseminated the teachings of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov. This manuscript is apparently a rare copy of some of the books that Rabbi Natan distributed in these countries.
[5], 182, [6] leaves. 14 cm. High-quality paper, good-fair condition, stains and wear. Original leather binding, rubbed.

Opening10,000$ Unsold
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