Judaica: Books, Manuscripts, Rabbinical Letters Books, Manuscripts & Rabbinical Letters

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Auction 44 Lot Number 283

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Illustrated, Ornamented Manuscript – Siddur Kavanot HaAri – In the Handwriting of Kabbalist Rabbi Shlomo Rechnitz Son of Rabbi Yehuda Leib Mochiach, Disciple and Faithful Assistant of Rabbi Naftali Katz Author of Semichat Chachamim – Moravia, 1756

Manuscript, Sha’arei Tefillah – Siddur Kavanot HaAri, in attractive and ornamental Ashkenazi writing, with illustrated title page. Nusach HaAri prayers for every day, Shabbat and Festivals, Shiviti and LaMenatzeach menorahs. Birkat HaMazon, prayers for Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur and the kavanot of Tekiat Shofar, kindling Chanuka lights and kavanot for Purim. Passover Haggadah and Sefirat HaOmer (detailed charts of kavanot HaSefira). Manuscript of the kabbalist scribe Rabbi Shlomo Rechnitz son of Rabbi Yehuda Leib Mochiach of Rechnitz (Rohonc). [Loschitz (Loštice), Moravia]. 1756.

Opening18,000$ Sold For86,100$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 269

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Ancient Torah Taj – Two Small Volumes – with Decorative Mesorah – Yemen, 14th Century

Manuscript, Taj – Keter Torah [Five Books of Torah with te'amim]. [Yemen, c. 14th century].
Two small format volumes. Square Yemenite writing, with vowels and te'amim. Margins adorned with the Mesorah text in small letters [the Mesorah text appears at the bottom of the pages styled like a woven carpet].
The first volume contains Bereshit and Shemot and the second, Vayikra, Bamidbar and Devarim. Bound at the beginning of the first part are leaves of the composition "Tijan Notebooks" (in Judeo-Arabic) written at a later time.
At the beginning of Volume 1 is an ancient faded [or erased] inscription of sale or inheritance. The year is written at the end of the inscription: 1434.
The Taj books were usually written in a large format. This is a rare phenomenon of Taj written in a small format.
Two volumes. Volume 1 – Bereshit-Shemot: [15], [149] leaves. ([15] leaves: the Tijan notebooks). Volume 2 – Vayikra-Bamidbar-Devarim: [171] leaves + [4] replacement leaves (beginning with Vayikra Chapter 1, Verse 9 [missing one leaf?], and ending with Devarim 32, 49 [end of V'Zot HaBracha]; the replacement leaves at the end are in a later handwriting). Approximately 12 cm. Varied condition among the leaves, good-fair. Most leaves are in overall good condition. Stains, wear and tear. Worm marks to several places. Many leaf margins are rounded and damaged from many years' use, with damage to Mesorah text. Ancient leather bindings (one is partially detached), with remnants of leather clasps. Worm holes to binding. Housed in a handsome box.

Opening3,000$ Sold For44,280$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 332

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Tractate Nidah and Seder Taharot – Signature of Rabbi Yosef Babad Author of Minchat Chinuch

Babylonian Talmud Tractate Nidah and Mishnayot Seder Taharot. Vienna, 1811. First edition of the Vilna Gaon's glosses on the Talmud.
At the top of the title page is the signature of the author of Minchat Chinuch, Rabbi "Yosef Babad of Sniatyn". On the last leaf are various ownership inscriptions that the book belongs to "Rabbi Yosef Babad Rabbi of Sniatyn" and another inscription that the "Talmud (Tractate) Nidah belongs to …Rabbi David Babad Rabbi of Probezhna" and a handwritten inscription of a draft for a wedding invitation. Few handwritten marginalia of corrections.
Rabbi Yosef Babad (1801-1879), son of Rabbi Moshe Babad Av Beit Din of Pshevarsk. Grandson and disciple of Rabbi Yehoshua Babad Av Beit din of Ternopil, author of Sefer Yehoshua and son-in-law of Rabbi Aryeh Leibush Halberstam Av Beit Din of Tarnogród. He was the study partner of his great brother-in-law Rebbe Chaim Halberstam, author of Divrei Chaim of Sanz. From a young age, he was well-known for his genius and his sharp intelligence and before he reached the age of 30, he was renowned as a leading rabbi of his times. He served in the rabbinates of Husakiv and Zaverezh'ye. In 1842, he was appointed Av Beit Din of Sniatyn and in 1857 he moved to serve in the Ternopil rabbinate, following in the footsteps of his illustrious grandfather Rabbi Yehoshua Babad.
His Torah novellae became famous during his lifetime by hearsay and questions and clever witty arguments are brought in the name of the Rabbi of Sniatyn in books authored by Torah scholars of his times. In the Sho'el U'Meshiv responsa, the Rabbi of Sniatyn is mentioned many times. Yet his primary teachings were transferred throughout the generations in his great book Minchat Chinuch about the 613 mitzvot explained by the Sefer HaChinuch. This book was published anonymously in 1869 as is written on the title page: “…This is an extensive commentary on Sefer HaChinuch written with tremendous 'pilpul' and amazing erudition…authored by one of the most outstanding Torah geniuses of our times, holy and pure. In his great humility, he concealed his name...". The publisher revealed the name of the author only in the second 1889 Lemberg edition, 10 years after Rabbi Babad died.
Minchat Chinuch eventually became one of the basic books of erudite and in-depth study in all the Batei Midrash throughout Galicia and Poland, Lithuania and Hungary, and the entire Diaspora until today. Throughout the years, thousands of copies in dozens of editions were printed, notwithstanding the dozens of books written about his explanations and questions.
Beside his Torah stature, he was also famous as a sacred pure servant of G-d [the author of Sho'el U'Meshiv writes in his eulogy that he never looked beyond his four cubits"]. He was close to the courts of Chassidic leaders. He stayed for a while near Rabbi Naftali of Ropczyce [who is reported to have told Rabbi Yosef to return home because his service of G-d is by diligent study of Torah]. Until the end of his days, Rabbi Yosef called Rabbi Naftali of Ropczyce his rebbe. Rabbi Babad wore white attire like Chassidim in his days and sometimes also received "kvitlach" and gave advice and blessings for salvation and cures.
His son Rabbi David Babad, [who apparently received the book as an inheritance from his eminent father] served as Av Beit Din of Probezhna before 1854. He thereafter moved to serve as Ra'avad in Sniatyn. In 1888, he ascended to Eretz Israel and served as Rabbi of Safed until c. 1894.
[9], 2-89 leaves; 199 leaves. 40 cm. Thick soft paper. Good-fair condition, much wear with drippings of candlewax. Ancient stamps from Safed synagogues. Old, non original binding.
Enclosed is an expert's authorization identifying the handwriting of the signature as identical to his handwriting found elsewhere.

Opening10,000$ Sold For17,220$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 136

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Letter – Invitation to the Wedding of the Lubavitch Rebbe – Handwritten by his Father-in-Law the Rayatz

Letter of invitation by Rebbe Yosef Yitzchak Schneerson (the Rayatz) upon the marriage of his daughter Rebbetzin Chaya Mushka with Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson – The Lubavitch-Chabad Rebbe. Riga, 1928.
"G-d has given me the privilege to marry off my daughter, the praiseworthy bride Chaya Mushka with the bridegroom Rabbi Menachem Mendel… the chuppah will take place on Tuesday the 14th of the month of Kislev in the courtyard of the Lubavitch Tomchei Temimim Yeshiva in Warsaw…".
Typewritten on the Rebbe's official stationary, the date and recipient completed in the Rebbe's handwriting ["My honored Mechutan… R' Yitzchak"], and with the Rebbe's signature.
24 cm. Good condition. Folding marks.

Opening5,000$ Sold For10,455$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 304

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Manuscript, Composition on the Torah and Homiletics – A Rabbi from Sidon (Lebanon) – 1744-1751

Manuscript, novellae and pilpulim on the Torah and commentaries on the words of Rashi and the Re'em. Homiletics for joyous occasions recited in Sidon during 1743-1751 and in Damascus, correspondence with Rabbi Chaim Amram "Mare D'Atra" of Damascus, and with Rabbi Moshe El-Granati. Autographic writing of an unknown author, but the content proves that he was a rabbi in Sidon at that time. [Sidon (Lebanon), after 1744].
Complete work [unprinted] – Novellae and explanations according to the order of the parshiot. Homiletics. The book has many variations of handwriting and apparently was written throughout various times, [or by several writers?]. Many ownership signatures at the bottom of the pages: “Ezra Atiye” [several additions to the book are in a similar handwriting to this signature, possibly they are late additions of Rabbi Ezra Atiye – a Torah scholar from Aleppo who lived in the 18th/19th century].
More than 20 long marginalia, in another handwriting, some begin with the words “Chaim speaks” and in one he mentions “And in the book Chacham Lev, I have a long matter [on this subject]” – The initial words “Chaim speaks” are the well-known signature of Rabbi Chaim Moda’i, author of Chaim L’Olam (died 1794), who printed Chiddushei HaRitva on Tractate Yoma in the book Or Yekarot (Constantinople, 1754) from a manuscript which was in his library and he add to it comments beginning with “Chaim speaks”. His comments to Seder HaAvodah printed in the machzor (Constantinople, 1744), begin with this signature as well. [Possibly, the writer of the marginalia is Rabbi Chaim Atiye, a Torah sage of Aleppo (1751-1795), who also wrote a work of “Pleasant homiletics on the Torah and on the language of the Re’em”. See: L’Kdoshim Asher Ba’Aretz’, p. 132, end of Ot 404].
On Leaves 20/2-21/1, he writes “And I have spoken these things in Damascus to the Mare D’Atra Rabbi Chaim Amram and this was his response…”. Apparently, Rabbi Chaim Amram (the I) a Safed emissary, who served for a while as Rabbi in Damascus. Died in 1760 and was buried in Tzipori in the Galilee. Author of Matza Chaim (the book Matza Chaim was not printed but he is still known by the name of this book. The manuscript of Matza Chaim was seen by Rabbi Y.M. Toledano who writes that the eulogy delivered by Rabbi Chaim Amram from 1743 on the death of his cousin, Rabbi Chaim ben Atar, author of Or HaChaim appears in that book. Kovetz Yerushalayim, p. 233) was the grandfather of Rabbi Chaim Amram, author of MiTa’am HaMelech born in 1759 (in his books and writings he quotes his grandfather, author of Matza Chaim). Also on Leaves 53/a-57/a, he brings other correspondence with Rabbi Chaim Amram: “I have been asked by the rabbi of the kollel Rabbi Chaim Amram…”.
On Leaf 2/a, the author brings excerpts from the book Yashresh Ya’akov by Mohracha Abulafia [Rabbi Chaim Abulafia, builder of the city of Tiberias – author of Mikra’ei Kodesh and Yashresh Ya’akov. Died in 1744), and further (Leaf 2/b) he writes things which he himself heard “from the holy … Moharcha”.
On Leaf 77/a is a homiletic eulogy “Which I have delivered here in Sidon, on hearing of the death of Rabbi David Melamed of Hebron in Elul 1751”. [Rabbi David Melamed (the I) Hebron emissary from 1724-1725]. He brings that Rabbi Melamed was eulogized by great rabbis and “Suitably eulogized by my brother, the complete wise sage…Rabbi Yosef…”. [Apparently, the author’s brother was an important rabbi called Rabbi Yosef].
On Leaf 82/a he writes: “I was asked by my brother-in-law Rabbi Moshe Elgranti…”. [Apparently, Rabbi Moshe Elgranti the III, an Izmir sage and rabbi, died in Cheshvan 1768. See Arzei HaLevanon, p. 1549].
On Leaf 107/a: “A homiletic I delivered here in Sidon, at the circumcision of the son born to my brother-in-law…Rabbi Chaim Divan, the week of Seder Shemot 1744”. [The Divan family was one of the most veteran Sidon families in the 18th-20th centuries]. On Leaf 113/a: “Homiletic which I have delivered here in Sidon at the wedding of the daughter of the complete chacham Shemarya [Katairibas?] with the complete chacham Rabbi David HaCohen, the week of Vayetze 1763.
1-2, (missing Leaves 3-4), 5-120 leaves, approx. 199 written pages. 21 cm. high-quality paper, good-fair condition, stains and wear, detached leaves. Ancient ornamented leather binding, worn and damaged.

Opening5,000$ Sold For9,225$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 354

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Letter on Matters of Mussar and Teshuva in Halacha – by Rabbi Naftali Amsterdam, to his Friend the Tsaddik Rabbi Itze’le Blazer Av Beit Din of St. Petersburg – Two Disciples of Rabbi Yisrael of Salant

Long fascinating letter handwritten and signed by Rabbi Naftali Amsterdam to his close friend Rabbi Itze'le Blazer, Av Beit Din of St. Petersburg. Helsingfors (Helsinki), Finland. [c. 1871].
At the beginning of the letter, Rabbi Naftali writes nostalgically of times past, when they basked together in the shadow of their revered teacher Rabbi Yisrael of Salant. He writes: "I will remind you of things that naturally people forget…it is very good for a person to preserve these moments, that man maintain a good quality, because it is known that a person cannot maintain one quality – except those who have lofty qualities like the Chassid [Rabbi Leib Chassid of Kelm]. Further in the letter he suggests that Rabbi Itze'le find himself a place for seclusion: "As soon as a person feels these good moments and intervals, he should see that he secludes his soul, and also his body if he can, and then he can write a long list of thoughts such as we had merited at that time, when his light was upon our heads" [when they both studied with their great teacher, Rabbi Yisrael of Salant].
The letter includes a halachic responsum discussing the mitzvah of Pidyon HaBen regarding a father who is serving in the army far away and cannot come to redeem his firstborn and does not have the five sela'im necessary for the pidyon. The question is if he can redeem him by means of a third party, etc.
Rabbi Naftali concludes the letter relating that his wife and family members are not yet prepared to move to Finland, "She fears that life there will not be like in the city of Nowogród, and also because I have informed them that no Jewish person from our country is allowed to trade in this country, which is indeed the case. I have not yet disclosed that she will not come to the residents of the city, perhaps you can really find a wise solution for this and consult those who know, for me…".
Rabbi Naftali Amsterdam (1832-1916), was born in the city of Salant and at a young age became attached to the ways of his close teacher, Rabbi Yisrael Salanter, until he became one of his greatest disciples. He was counted among the first ten carefully chosen disciples in the Kovne Kollel founded by Rabbi Yisrael Salanter in 1849. In 1867, following the instructions of his teacher Rabbi Yisrael Salanter, Rabbi Naftali moved to serve as rabbi of Helsingfors (Helsinki), the capital city of Finland, and he retained this position until 1875. [In 1870, he was accepted as Rabbi of the city of Nowogród and served there for a year but in 1871 he returned to the Helsinki rabbinate]. In 1875, he moved back to Kovno and served there in several positions and in 1906 ascended to Jerusalem. There he continued his Torah and mussar studies for ten years and influenced the entire Torah community of Jerusalem with the mussar school of thought.
His close friend, Rabbi Yitzchak Blazer, R’ Itze’le Peterburger (1837-1907) was one of the greatest disciples of Rabbi Yisrael of Salant, a leading Torah scholar in his times who spread the Mussar movement. Following the instructions of his teacher Rabbi Yisrael Salanter, he moved to the capital city of St. Petersburg
to serve in its rabbinate. He served as Rabbi and Av Beit Din from 1862-1878. In 1878, he resigned from the rabbinate and moved to Kovno and from 1980, he headed the Kovno Kollel. In 1904, he immigrated to Jerusalem. He authored the Pri Yitzchak responsa and Kochvei Or which was published together with Or Yisrael written by his teacher, Rabbi Yisrael Salanter.
The content of this letter, written after 1871, after Rabbi Naftali returned to Finland, is interesting and enlightening. It portrays correspondence between tsaddikim, both mussar giants, Torah geniuses and amazingly pious individuals, leading disciples of the founder of the Mussar movement, Rabbi Yisrael Salanter, who both spread his teachings. They write longingly of days past, at the time they basked together in the shadow of their teacher, they discuss ways to serve G-d, negotiate halachic issues and consult one another about personal matters. This letter reflects their way of thinking and the uniqueness of Rabbi Yisrael’s disciples, in their integral combination of Halacha, conduct and mussar [between man and G-d, man and his fellow-man, man and himself].
[2] pages 22 cm. Approximately 35 handwritten lines, good condition, folding marks. With wax stamp of Rabbi Naftali (almost whole).

Opening4,500$ Sold For8,610$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 423

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Historical Letter of Rabbi Shach – Regarding his Attitude Towards Chassidim and the Chassidic Movement – Cheshvan 1889 – During the Pre-Election Period During Which the Degel HaTorah Movement was Founded

Letter handwritten and signed by Rabbi Shach head of Ponevezh Yeshiva, about his attitude towards Chassidim and Rebbes. Bnei Brak, Cheshvan 1988.
Sent to "The rebbe Rahatz in Jerusalem" – before the elections to the Knesset in the autumn of 1988, at the time Rabbi Shach founded the Degel HaTorah movement [after Agudat Yisrael refused to accept the opinion of the heads of yeshivot and Lithuanian Torah leaders – especially Related to the Messiac movement of Chabad Chassidim].
He writes as follows: "In continuation of our conversation yesterday, I was really shocked to hear of the slander and falsehood told about me that I have spoken or done something, G-d forbid, against Chassidim and their leaders…This is a lowly defamation and a coarse falsehood to say that I oppose Chassidim. I have already said that I truly do not have and never had anything against Chassidism or Chassidim. It is well-known that thousands of Chassidic students studied and are studying at present in our holy yeshiva. I have never treated them differently in any way from any other students – I am sorry that the word "sect" that I used in my opposition to Chabad Chassidism hurt the Chassidim, but G-d forbid, I did not mean Chassidim in general, whom I know to be G-d-fearing and complete in Torah and mitzvah observance... On the contrary, I cannot imagine the way our generation would look without Chassidism and Chassidim and their lofty activities for Torah and Judaism, with their characteristic beloved warmth, especially the rebbes and their special yeshivot which have an important place in the Torah world…”.
This letter came from the home of the Spinka-Zhydachiv, Rebbe Alter Eliezer Kahane (1937-2009), a holy tsaddik and an outstanding Jerusalem Torah scholar - See Item 439 - who was hurt during the
dispute which developed between Chassidim and Jews of Lithuanian tradition during that election campaign and he traveled to Bnei Brak to speak with Rabbi Shach on this matter. Rabbi Shach heard his painful plaints and he knew no rest all night. The next day, he wrote this letter and sent it with a special messenger who brought the home of Rebbe Alter Kahane in Jerusalem. [Interestingly, he did not explicitly write the name of the recipient, the Rebbe, in the letter. Perhaps he was concerned lest this lead to additional polemic and dispute].
Official stationery, 25 cm. Approximately 19 handwritten lines. Very-good condition, folding marks. + the original envelope in which the letter arrived.

Opening3,000$ Sold For8,610$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 243

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Manuscript, Novellae and Compilations – Morocco, Beginning of 20th Century

Manuscript of novellae, homiletics and compilations, on the Talmud and on the Torah and Tehillim, [Morocco, beginning of 20th century].
On Leaf [2] and on Leaf [8] the author writes ideas in the name of his older brother the Maharam. On the last leaf is an owner's signature in Latin letters: Yitzchak Abuchatzira, Erfoud.
Approximately 36 written pages, (many empty pages). 20 cm. Brittle paper, good-fair condition, wear and tear. New binding.

Opening300$ Sold For8,610$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 393

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Interesting Letter by Rebbe Shalom Eliezer Halberstam of Ujfeherto (Ratzfert) – Son of the Divrei Chaim

Letter on a postcard, in the handwriting of the gabai, signed by the Rebbe "Shalom Eliezer Halberstam of Sanz". Bardejovské Kúpele, summer 1938.
Letter sent in response to the question of R' Yisrael Fried of Kisvárda as to whether the second half of Elul is a suitable time to hold a wedding celebration. He writes: "I have received your letter, and there is no problem holding a wedding celebration in the second half of the month of Elul – therefore, make the wedding with Mazal tov and all good blessings…". On the verso in the gabai's handwriting is a letter to the recipient: "Also the gabai send regards and is waiting for payment for his troubles".
Rebbe Shalom Eliezer Halberstam (1862-1944), one of the younger sons of the Rebbe, author of Divrei Chaim of Sanz. At the time of his father's death, he was only 14 years old and was educated by his elder brother, the Rebbe of Shinova. He married the daughter of his sister and brother-in-law Rebbe Mordechai Dov Twersky Rabbi of Gornostaypol. In 1899, he reached the city of Ujfeherto and established his court. Renowned as a wonder-worker, many Jews from all over Hungary thronged to his home in Ujfeherto and were delivered by means of his blessings. During the Holocaust, he did not leave his community and perished with them in Auschwitz in Sivan 1944.
Postcard, approximately 14.5 cm. With postage stamps and stamps from August 23, 1938. Good condition, minor creases.

Opening7,000$ Sold For8,610$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 284

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Manuscript, Sefer Mevo Shearim by Rabbi Chaim Vital – Podolia, 1774-1775 – Illustrated Title Page

Manuscript, Sefer Mevo Shearim, "divided into several titles, and each title is divided into several titles. By Rabbi Chaim Vital, who got it from Rabbi Yitzchak Luria – and it is an inclusive introduction to all aristocracy and a gate to enter through it to the Etz HaHaim". Mrachva (present day Staraya Murafa. Podolia, town next to Poltava), (1774-1775).
Complete manuscript, with title page and Indexes. Fine and neat copying, glosses by Rabbi Tzemach and Rabbi Moshe Zakut were written within the text. Fine Ashkenazi script, illustrated title page, with illustrations of figures and lions and author's name: Rabbi Gedaliya ben Yitzchak Isaac. At the end of each of the book's chapters a colophon with date of writing [from the month of Heshvan 1774 until the month of Adar 1775, with author's signatures: Rabbi "Gedaliya ben Rabbi Yitzchak Isaac Spitz".
Ownership inscription on index page: "Belongs [to R'] Yehuda Leib of Snitkov", (Podolia).
[3], 159 leaves. 21 cm. Good condition, spots. Damages with text omission (professionally restored) to title page and to first leaves. Fine renewed binding, with ancient leather spine.
Sefer Mevo Shearim is the Mahadura Batra (second recension) of the Kabbalistic compositions by Rabbi Chaim Vital found in Genizah and edited by the Kabbalist Rabbi Ya'akov Tzemach. The books was first printed in Koretz in 1783 and again in Thessaloniki in 1806 according to a different manuscript. This manuscript was written 8 years earlier than the printed edition, and there are variations versus the printed edition. The manuscript was written in the area of Podolia, inspired and influenced by the Baal Shem Tov disciples who lived and acted in the area.

Opening5,000$ Sold For7,995$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 359

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Letter by Rabbi Moshe Greenwald of Chust Author of Arugat HaBosem

Letter of recommendation to a disciple by Rabbi Moshe Greenwald, Av Bet Din of Chust, author of Arugat HaBosem. Chust, 1896.
A long handwritten letter, signed by hand and with his stamp, on behalf of his disciple "The outstanding young man Pinchas Ya'akov Cohen of Jánosháza", who studied in his yeshiva for several years, "And now desires to return to his father's home and I said that I will write a few words as a testimony so he will be esteemed in his city…".
The famous Torah genius Rabbi Moshe Ben-Amram Greenwald (1853-1910, HaChatam Sofer Ve'Talmidav p. 521), one of the leading Hungarian rabbis and heads of yeshiva. Disciple of Rabbi Menachem Katz Prostitz of Tzehlim and disciple of the Ktav Sofer in Pressburg. As a young man, he already headed a yeshiva in his native city of Cherna and later served in the rabbinate of several Hungarian communities. From 1893, he served as Av Bet Din of Chust. Although he studied in the yeshiva of the Chatam Sofer, he was affiliated with Chassidism and would travel to the Belz and Siget rebbes. In Chust, he established his elaborate court and expanded his yeshiva which eventually became one of the largest yeshivas in Hungary. Disciples from all over the country and abroad flocked to his yeshiva and many Hungarian rabbis were his disciples. He was renowned for his compositions on Halacha and Aggada named Arugat HaBosem. His son was Rabbi Ya'akov Yechizkiya Greenwald Av Bet Din and Rebbe of Papa, and his grandson is Rebbe Yosef Greenwald of Papa, who established the Papa Chassidism in America after the Holocaust.
Leaf, 21 cm. Good condition. Folding marks and wear. Restored with tape on the reverse side.

Opening3,000$ Sold For7,995$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 311

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Rashba Responsa, First Edition – Bologna, 1539 – Signature and Glosses of Rabbi Bezalel Ronsburg

Responsa, by the Rashba (Rabbeinu Shlomo ben Aderet). Bologna, 1539. First edition. Printed by "The partners who uphold the Torah here in the city of Bologna".
Long scholarly glosses by two writers: Ancient glosses in early Ashkenasi handwriting from the time of printing [16th/17th century] and many glosses in the handwriting of Rabbi Bezalel Ronsburg, one of them signed "Bezalel R.V.".
Many ancient signatures on the flyleaf, the latest signature is by Rabbi "Bezalel Ronsburg". Ownership inscription signed "Pilta ben Rabbi moshe Epstein Segal of Offenbach" from 1765, attesting that book belongs to Rabbi Daniel Oppenheim, and other ownership inscriptions.
On the title page is another signature of Rabbi "Bezalel Ronsburg B.R." and a very old signature of "Aharon ben Rabbi ---".
Rabbi Bezalel Ronsburg (1762-1821), a leading Torah scholar in his times who lived in Prague. A close disciple of the Nodah B'Yehuda. In the introduction to his book Horah Gaver, Rabbi Bezalel writes of his teacher: "Every Shabbat… I did not miss hearing Torah from his mouth" and in his responsa he calls him "the greatest of the Achronim (late Torah authorities)". He wrote: Horah Gaver, Chochmat Bezalel-Pitchei Nidah, etc. His glosses on the Talmud were printed on the Talmud sheets in many editions.
Rabbi Moshe Pilta Epstein Segal was a Ashkenazi rabbi, disciple of Rabbi Yedidya Tia Weil, who published his commentary on the Haggadah (Marbeh L'Saper, Karlsroh 1791). He served in the rabbinate of Bruchsal (Baden) and Prisol.
[16], 2-216 leaves. Mispagination. 28.5 cm. Varied condition, most leaves are in good condition. Stains and wear to first and last leaves, worm damages and wear. Elaborate leather binding.

Opening5,000$ Sold For7,380$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 287

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Manuscript – Yesod Ha’Ibur by Rabbi Yosef Son of Rabbi Yehudah Hachazan of Troyes – 16th Century – Unprinted Manuscript

Manuscript, Yesod Ha’Ibur, rules and laws regarding Ibur Hashana, by Rabbi Yosef son of Rabbi Yehudah Hachazan of Troyes. [Ashkenaz, 16th century].
Fine semi-cursive Ashkenazi handwriting, typical of the period, with initials in red ink. Includes many tables for calculation of New moon. Title page at the beginning of the manuscript which was added during a later period.
Introduction at top of manuscript: “The foundation of the Ibur [declaring a leap year] which was established by the wise Rabbi Yosef son of Rabbi Yudah Hachazan of Troyes, is calculation of the New moon of any given month, and although I have already written regarding this matter I will not refrain from writing this excellent method of calculation through which many secrets have been revealed and many mysteries have been solved and which can be attained only by this method which was handed down by my forefathers”.
Rabbi Yosef son of Rabbi Yehudah Hachazan of Troyes, among scholars of France during period of the Rishonim (approximately 13th century). Several compositions written by him are known, among them Sefer Yedidot on the wisdom of grammar (which is cited in the Minchat Yehudah commentary on the Torah, by Rabbi Yehudah son of Elazar, one of the authors of the Tosfot) and several compositions on the wisdom of leap years, one of which is the composition in this manuscript.
Apparently, this is the only copy of this composition, that has not been printed.
Notations and ownership signatures. Last page contains listing of planets and signs of zodiac.
[1], [28] leaves + 4 blank leaves. 15 cm. Good condition, stains and slight wear.

Opening5,000$ Sold For6,765$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 1

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Small Torah Scroll – With Unique Adorned Tagim – Eastern Europe, 18th Century

Small Torah scroll. [Eastern Europe, c. 18th century].
Ashkenazi handwriting, characteristic to Russia or Eastern-Europe, 18th century. Bereshit and Shemot have unique, elaborate crown-like adornments on the Tagim (serifs). This is a rare phenomenon, since halachic requirements forbid adding adornments and decorations to a Torah scroll, but these adornments were done in a permissible manner – they are an extension of the Tagim.
Height of parchment: 25 cm, Atzei Haim: 50 cm. Overall good-fair condition. Stains, repairs with parchment and repairs to the writing.

Opening5,000$ Sold For6,150$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 251

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Letter Handwritten and Signed by the Baba Sali

Letter by Rabbi Israel Abuchatzeira – the Baba Sali, to Rabbi Shimon Adahan. [No reference of place or date].
14 lines in his own handwriting, with his signature.
Rabbi Israel Abuchatzeira, the Baba Sali, (1889-1984), son of Rabbi Mas'ud, the Rabbi of Tafilalt (Morocco), son of Rabbi Yaakov Abuchatzeira. An outstanding Torah genius in revealed and hidden Torah, Known to be holy and pure. He published writings of his grandfather Rabbi Yaakov. Served as Chief Rabbi of Erfoud and its surroundings. In 1950 moved to Jerusalem and in 1957 returned to Morocco. In 1964 he settled finally in Israel in the city of Netivot. All types of people came to his home for counsel and blessings and he was known as a miracle-worker. His grandsons are the famous Abuchatzeira rabbis.
21.5 cm. Fair condition, folding marks, wear and tears. Fair condition. Folding marks, wear and tears.

Opening2,000$ Sold For6,150$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 288

auction

Ornamented Manuscript on Parchment – Prayers and Blessings Recited upon Reading the Torah – Eiwanowitz, 18th Century – Unique Versions, Including Prayer Arranged by Maharal of Prague

Manuscript on parchment, prayers and blessings recited during the reading of Torah. (Eiwanowitz, Moravia; presently: Ivanovice na Hane, Czecoslovakia), [first half of 18th century].
Square (scribe) writing and semi-cursive Ashkenazi writing (similar to Tzena Urena letters). At the head of paragraphs - ornamentations and illustrations of floral, bird and other designs.
On margins of page [9] colophon by the author: “written by Yosef son of our mentor and Rabbi Hillel Shm[uel?] scribe of holy congregation of Eiwanowitz”. On margin of page [4] ancient owner signature: “Yehudah Leib son of my beloved father Rabbi Yitzchak Eizik”. Manuscript includes prayers recited on Shabbat, after Torah reading in synagogue preceding Mussaf prayer. At head of manuscript (pages 1-2) two prayers - Yekum Purkan, and Mi Sheberach for the congregation which are recited afterwards, and following it Birkat Rosh Chodesh (concise version, without Yehi Ratzon which was added at a later time).
On page [3] Mi Sheberach prayer for those undertaking to fast on Monday and Thursday (unfamiliar version), and a special prayer for the praised Roman Caesar (Caralis)… “ [apparently in reference to Charles VI Holy Roman Emperor, who died in 1740].
On pages [4-6]: order of change of name for sick [Metzalin Anachnu and Yehi Ratzon recited after change of name]. Mi Sheberach blessing for sick [He who blessed Avraham Yitzchak and Yaakov… and first righteous people and He who cured Miriam the Prophetess from her leprosy and sweetened the waters of Mara through Moshe Rabbeinu and healed the waters of Jericho and healed Chizkiah King of Yehudah of his illness and the righteous Binyamin of his illness…” – similar version brought from Gramiza pamphlet , by Frumkin, in Seder Rav Amram Ga’on, Jerusalem 1911. See attached material]; blessing for woman in confinement [unfamiliar version, similar in style to that of Frumkin].
On page [7]: prayer “of our mentor and rabbi Rabbi Leib of Prague for Monday and Thursday” – prayer for protection from informers, “May he… uproot and eradicate… the informers who injure the Jewish people with their tongues and destroy the status of the congregations and distress their brothers to bring about their defeat…”. [This prayer is cited in the book of regulations of the state of Mehrin named after the Maharal of Prague, and was preserved, with changes, in the synagogue registry in the congregation of Krezmir. It was customary to recite it in the congregations of Eisenstadt, where it was attributed to author of the Panim Me’irot. See attached material].
On page [8]: prayers Yehi Ratzon Milifnei Avinu Shebashamayim for Monday and Thursday, and prayer Acheinu Kol Beit Yisrael, and on page [9] Av Harachaman prayer for martyrs. Addition on last page [10]: wording for Eiruv Tavshilin, apparently by different writer (with first word in decorative writing).
5 parchment leaves, 10 written pages. 27 cm. Good-fair condition. Stains and wear, several tears. New binding.
Enclosed; A letter by Prof. Gershom Scholem (in English) regarding prayer for downfall of informers included in this manuscript.

Opening5,000$ Sold For6,150$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 18

auction

Large Colorful Illustrated Ketubah – Jerusalem, 1882 – Signatures of Jerusalem Rabbis

Illustrated colorful ketubah, recording the marriage of the bridegroom Yechiel ben R' David Chefetz with the bride Cheftziba bat R' Eliyahu Ye'oshua Ba'ivaga. Jerusalem, 10th of Adar 1882.
The ketubah is written in a handsome Oriental writing. With witnesses' signatures of two Jerusalem rabbis: Rabbi Meir Refael Fanijal [HaMarpeh, the Rishon L'Zion in Jerusalem] and Rabbi Yosef Y'oshua Karyo [Ra'avd of Jerusalem author of Bnei Yosef]. In the center is the signature of the groom R' Yechiel Chefetz.
Ketubah illustrated and adorned with colorful ink, in the style of "The Jerusalem Ketubah". Fashioned into two frames culminating in a purple pattern framing a stylish flower at the top. Upper margins are adorned with roses and green vegetation. Written in the bottom frame is the text of the ketubah and in the upper frame are three vases with roses and vegetation with stars in between. Some of the adornments are in golden ink.
The Chefetz family members were the forerunners of immigrants from Bukhara to Eretz Israel and founded the Bukharim Neighborhood in Jerusalem. The father, Rabbi David Chefetz (died in 1898) was Rabbi of the city of Kokand in Bukhara and a wealthy individual and left his city in 1871 to immigrate with his family to Jerusalem. When he arrived in Jerusalem, he printed a book titled Birkat HaIlanot. His sons are mentioned on the title page: Yisrael, Yechiel [the groom of this ketubah] and Emanuel Zion. In his introduction he wrote: "I am the first from Bukhara to dwell in the Holy Land with my family" (he later published more books). Later, Yechiel Chefetz became an influential community leader of the Bukhara community.
54X75 cm. Fair condition. Stains and moisture damages, folding marks and tears.

Opening1,000$ Sold For5,658$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 328

auction

Pa’ane’ach Raza – Hundreds of Handwritten Glosses by the Aderet – With a Copy of the “Last Will and Testament of the Chasam Sofer” in the Aderet’s Handwriting

Pa’ane’ach Raza, a fine commentary on the Five Books of the Torah, according to the Remez and Sod interpretation of the Torah. By Rabbi Yitzchak bar Yudah HaLevi. Gematriot and commentaries, by the author and by the Rishonim, the Ran Rabbi Yosef Bechor Shor and Rabbi Eliezer Ba'al HaRoke’ach. [Warsaw, 1867].
Bound with Sefer Haredim on the mitzvoth. By Rabbi Elazar Azkari of Safed. Lemberg, 1875.
The sheets of the book Pa’ane’ach Raza include more than 300 short and long glosses (sources, comments and questions, explanations and novellae), in the handwriting characteristic to the outstanding Torah genius Rabbi Eliyahu David Rabinowitz Te'omim – the Aderet.
At the end of Sefer Haredim and on the flyleaf is a copy of "The Last Will and Testament of the Chasam Sofer", in the Aderet's handwriting.
Rabbi Eliyahu David Rabinowitz Te'omim – the Aderet (1845-1905) Av Bet Din of Ponevezh, Mir and Jerusalem. was renowned from his childhood for his love and diligent study of Torah. At a young age he had already developed into an exceptional Torah scholar, erudite and astute in all aspects of Torah. He wrote brilliant novellae. First he served in the Ponevezh rabbinate and after 20 years moved to serve in the Mir rabbinate from which he was summoned by Rabbi Shmuel Salant, the aged rabbi of Jerusalem, to succeed him as leader of the Jerusalem rabbinate. In 1905, approximately two and a half years after he accepted this position, he died at the age of 60, when Rabbi Shmuel Salant was still alive [he died in 1909 at nearly 100 years old]. He left behind more than 100 manuscripts, most were never printed. His son-in-law was the Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaCohen Kook, Chief Rabbi in Palestine.
(The title page and 3 other leaves are missing), 5-62, 55- 66, 1-58 leaves; [64] leaves. Fair condition, stains and wear, the last leaf with the copy of the testament
is damaged with some missing text. Not bound.

Opening800$ Sold For5,658$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 67

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Tehillim “Diglei Hodaya V’Hamitzvah / Ma’amadot and a Siddur (Nusach Sefarad) According to the Ari – Zhitomir, 1866

Tehillim, with Ma'amadot, and the book Diglei Hodaya V'Hamitzvah. • Seder Ma'amadot by the Rebbe of Apta and Seder Tefillah for year-round use by the Ari (Nusach Sefarad) – with Tikun Se'udah (a special title page). • Prayer by the Magid Rabbi Mordechai of Chernobyl – for those who have no mikveh". • Many other additions. Zhitomir, 1866. Printed by Rabbi Aryeh Leib Shapira, grandson of the Rabbi of Slavita.
First edition with Diglei Hodaya V'Hamitzvah, laws of the 613 mitzvot and the seven mitzvoth d'Rabbanan, [by R' Yehuda ben R' Chaim Landau] of Jerusalem. With approbations of Ashkenazi and Sephardi Jerusalem rabbis. List of subscribers from Jerusalem and the Ukraine (Belz, Skvira, Berdychiv, Ruzhin, Zhitomir, Zlatopol, Bender, Kokhanovo, Korets, Rachmistrivka, Shpola, etc.). At the beginning of Seder Ma'amadot is an introduction and approbation by the Rabbi of Apta and an introduction by Rebbe Aryeh Leib Shapira, with another list of subscribers.
Various signatures and ownership inscriptions: "Yirmiya Sofer"; "Aharon ---- Sofer", etc.
(Missing first title page) [2], 5-440, 221-225, [11] pages; [4], 112, 57-64, 22 pages (missing 5 leaves at the end of Tikun Se'uda, originally: 440, 221-225, [11]; [4], 112, 57-64, 61-64, 28 pages). 20.5 cm. Fair condition, stains and tears. Few old gluings, worm damages. Old worn binding.

Opening3,000$ Sold For5,412$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 306

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Manuscript, Novellae on the Torah and the Bible – Handwritten by Rabbi Moshe Kimchi, One of Hebron Leading Rabbis – ca. 1830s-1880s

Manuscript, novellae on the Torah, on Nevi'im and Ketuvim, Shir HaShirim and Tehilim, Aggada, Halacha and Kabbalah interpretations. In the author's handwriting, the Gaon Rabbi Moshe Kimchi one of the leading Hebron rabbis, Rosh Yeshiva and member of Beit Din of Rabbi Eliyahu Saliman Mani. Autographic writing of the author, through various periods – Hebron, ca. 1830s-1880s.
Author’s ink stamps: “Moshe Kimchi”, “M.K.”.
Numerous signatures at the end of different sections: "EM"K S"T", "MEM"K", "Me'iti EM"K S"T", "From me the writer "EM"K" [EMK – initials: Eved Hashem Moshe Kimchi. A poetic phrase after the verse "MeEmek Hevron"].
A comprehensive composition which has not been printed – Novellae and compilations on Torah portions and Haftarot, biblical, Megilot and Tehilim compilations. In several places he extends Halachic matters (see Parashat BaMidbar) and in other places he deals with Kabbalah matters, (the verse in Tehilim "Ki Alecha Horgenu" he brings an interpretation by HaAri "from Harav HaChasid"). In most places he brings at the end of a chapter the source, and if it is an original novellae of the author he signs in pseudonym: "EME"K", "MEME"K" etc. in poetic phrases. He also refers to his teachers: "Rav Achai",…"Rabbi Hadisa Kahana …", and more.
This manuscript reached later Rabbi Yossef Nissim Burla (Av Beit Din Jerusalem 1828-1903, author of "VaYeshev Yossef" and "Leket Yossef") – In Parashat Ra'ah there is a comment handwritten by him and his signature "HaTza'ir Yossef Nissim Burla S"T".
The Gaon Rabbi Moshe Kimchi, was born (1809) in Bosnia, relocated to Hebron as a child in 1820. Over the years he was appointed as Beit Din member and Rosh Yeshiva. In ca. 1880-1890 served as Hebron congregation committee head, and was the "second to sign" after the city's rabbi Eliyahu Saliman Mani ["Third to sign" was Rabbi Rachamim Franco]. Since 1839 he is signed on various documents. In 1851 he signed an emissary missive for Rabbi David Hacohen and in the years 1861-1862, he himself went on a mission. He is also signed on approbations of various books. In his approbation for the book “Avodat Hashem” by Rabbi Shneur Zalman ben rabbi Menachem Mendel (Jerusalem 1883) he is named “the wonderful rabbi…”. In 1887 he is signed with Hebron rabbis on an approbation for Sidur “Oholei Ya’akov”.
More than 170 written pages (numerous blank leaves) 19 cm. Paper of good quality. Good-fair condition, wear and spotting. Minor damages to borders of leaves. Old binding.

Opening2,000$ Sold For5,412$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 66

auction

Machzor, Passover Haggadah, Selichot and Tehillim – Slavita, 1826

Siddur for the whole year [prayers for weekdays, Shabbat and Rosh Chodesh, Passover Haggadah, prayers for Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, Yotzrot and Selichot], Nusach Ashkenaz, with Yiddish translation [Tzena U'Rena letters]. [Slavita, c. 1826]. With Tehillim and Ma'amadot. Slavita, [1826]. [Shapira printing].
The siddur is missing the title page and several leaves at the beginning [the owner of the siddur came to Israel from Soviet Russia in the 1970s, and since it was forbidden to take books that were printed in Russia, the title page was torn out and the title page of the Mishna Brura [printed in Warsaw] was bound in its stead. We could not identify the edition (or it is not recorded in the Bibliography Institute); the printing date is estimated according to the adjoining Tehillim.
Separate title page for Tehillim. Without printer’s name.
Stamp in Cyrillic letters: “Л.А.М РАВИНЪ”.
Printed on bluish paper. Siddur: 4-110; 144, [4] leaves (the title page and leaves 2-3 are missing). Tehillim: 94 leaves (leaves 95-96, from the end of Ma’amadot section, are missing). 21 cm. Most leaves are in good condition, some in fair condition. Stains (some leaves have many stains). Leaves 10-37 [of the Siddur – Shacharit prayer] are in poor condition (coarse tears with missing parts and damage caused to text). Old leather binding, detached and damaged.

Opening1,000$ Sold For4,920$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 232

auction

Manuscript, Lugo Community Notebook, Italy – 1764-1825 – Emissaries from Eretz Israel

Manuscript, Lugo community notebook. Italy, 1764-1825.
Thick volume, mostly written in Italian with names of people and Hebrew passages. Contains an interesting documentation of Eretz-Israeli emissaries who visited the community.
On the last leaves of the volume are titles and lists of donations to Eretz Israel funds, Kupat Hebron, the needy residents of Jerusalem, Safed and Tiberias. Mentioned on one leaf: "The Jerusalem emissaries Rabbi Yom Tov Algazi and Rabbi Ya'akov Lebin Chazan" [the Kabbalist Rabbi Yom Tov (the Maharit) Algazi, a leading Jerusalem sage and friend of the Chida, Jerusalem emissary to European countries together with his companion Rabbi Ya’akov Chazan, also a Jerusalem sage. The two traveled throughout Italy during 1772-1773. See attached material].
A passage in Italian appears on Leaves [135-136] which ends with the signature of “Refael Yeshaya Azulai” [the Chida’s son, Rabbi of Ancona, died in 1826], followed by a long copy [in Hebrew] of an emissary letter from Safed from 1821 [see enclosed material].
The manuscript has not been thoroughly examined.
Approximately 180 written leaves (additional empty leaves). 27.5 cm. Good condition. Stains. Contemporary binding with vellum spine, damaged and worn.

Opening1,500$ Sold For4,920$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 147

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Five Dollar Bills Distributed by the Lubavitch Rebbe

• Five bills: two one-dollar bills, a five, ten and twenty dollar bills, given by the Chabad Rebbe to give to charity [the dates on which they were given are written on the bills]. – Attached is the authorization of the owner of the bills.
• A one lira coin, glued onto a paper envelope, with the inscription: "1 lira coin of the Admor, for Elka, the 15 th of Tamuz, 1976" [apparently, given by the Lubavitch Rebbe].

Opening1,000$ Sold For4,920$ Including buyers premium

Auction 44 Lot Number 85

auction

Likutei Maharin and Toldot Yitzchak ben Levi – by Rabbi Yisrael ben Levi Yitzchak of Berdychiv – First Edition, Berdychiv, 1811

Likutei Maharin and Toldot Yitzchak ben Levi, Chassidic and Kabbalistic homiletics on the Torah and the Megillot. By Rabbi Yisrael Av Beit Din of Pikov son of Rabbi Levi Yitzchak of Berdychiv. Berdychiv, 1811. First edition published by the author, who writes of himself on the title page: "Yisrael Rabbi of Pikov son of the holy Torah genius holy pure G-dly man…Rabbi Levi Yitzchak Av Beit Din of Berdychiv".
Owner's signatures and handwritten inscriptions of Torah novellae. Ancient signature on title page (crossed out with pen) of “Aryeh Leibush Halprin... Lubartow” [Lubartow in the Lublin region. Possibly the signature is of Rebbe Aryeh Leibush Halprin, father of rebbe Menachem Mendel of Kotzk, who lived in the Lublin area] and other ownership inscriptions "To Rabbi Shalom Baruch ben R' Z.H.” [Rabbi Zvi Hirsh].
The author Rebbe Yisrael (Derbaremdiker) Av Beit Din of Pikov and Berdychiv (died in 1818), son and successor of Rebbe Levi Yitzchak Av Beit din of Berdychiv, author of Kedushat Levi. In this book printed in 1811, the year after his father's death, he writes on the title page that he is Rabbi of Pikov. He does not note that he was already accepted as his father's successor in the Berdychiv rabbinate. He quotes his great father's teachings in this book.
[1], 83 leaves. 21.5 cm. Blue and greenish paper, good condition. Stains and wear. Contemporary leather binding, damages.
Stefansky Chassidut, no. 283.

Opening4,000$ Sold For4,920$ Including buyers premium
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