Books, Manuscripts, Rabbinical Letters, Ceremonial Art Books, Manuscripts & Rabbinical Letters

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The Auction was held on 12/03/19

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Auction 65 Lot Number 386

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Torah Finials – Star of David with the word “Zion”

Torah finials ornamented with a Star of David. [Iraq?, first decades of the 20th century].
Silver, cast and engraved; granulation.
Conical rhombus-shaped finials, topped with a spherical knop and a Star of David with the word "Zion" within. The finials are decorated with engraved foliate and floral patterns and granulation, and with five chains with bells.
Height: approx. 27 cm. Good condition. Bends. Some fractures.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 143

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Zohar, Part II – Brody, 1873 – Copy of Rebbe Avraham Yehoshua Heshel Twersky of Malyn-Radomishyl, and of Rebbe Tzvi Hirsh Rokeach

Zohar, Part II, Shemot. Brody: R. Moshe Leib Harmelin, 1873.
On the front endpaper, handwritten signature: "Avraham Yehoshua Heshel son of R. Gedalia of Malyn, residing in Radomyshl", and inscriptions of names for prayer and blessing. On the first page following the title page, stamp of R. "Tzvi Hirsh Rokeach son-in-law of the rabbi of Alesk". A notepaper containing a handwritten inscription of a curative segulah formula was found between the leaves.
Rebbe Avraham Yehoshua Heshel Twersky (d. 1919, Encyclopedia of Chassidut, I, p. 96), eighth generation from the Baal Shem Tov, son of R. Gedalia of Malyn (who was the grandson and disciple of R. Aharon of Chernobyl, and son of R. Yisrael of Breslov, descendant of R. Nachman of Breslov and of the Baal Shem Tov). R. Avraham Yehoshua Heshel's wife was the granddaughter of R. Chanoch Heinich Meyer of Alesk (Olesko), author of Lev Same'ach (she was presumably the daughter of Rebbe Tzvi Hirsh Rokeach son-in-law of the Lev Same'ach, whose stamps appear in this book). R. Avraham Yehoshua Heshel succeeded his father as rebbe of Malyn in Radomyshl. He was murdered together with his son R. Gedalia in the pogrom against Radomyshl's Jews in Iyar 1919. His son and successor was Rebbe Chanoch Heinich Dov Twersky of Lev Same'ach (1886-1971), who was born in Alesk and served as rebbe in place of his father in Malyn. In 1924, he immigrated to the United States, founding the Lev Same'ach community in Chicago, and in 1968, he immigrated to Jerusalem.
His father-in-law [?], Rebbe Tzvi Hirsh Rokeach (Encyclopedia of Chassidut, III, p. 614), son of R. Sender, who was the son of R. Eliezer, eldest son of the Sar Shalom, Rebbe of Belz. R. Tzvi Hirsh was the son-in-law of Rebbe Chanoch Heinich Dov of Alesk, author of Lev Same'ach, who was the son-in-law of the Sar Shalom of Belz.
[1], 1, 3-280 leaves. 20 cm. Good-fair condition. Stains. Worming. Worming affecting the Rebbe's signature. Original leather binding, damaged.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 134

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LeZecher LeYisrael on Pirkei Avot – Vilna, 1833 – By the Founder of the Volozhin Yeshiva

LeZecher LeYisrael, on Pirkei Avot and Talmudic novellae, by R. Yechiel Michel son of R. Tzvi Hirsh. Vilna-Horodna: Menachem Mann and Simcha Zimmel, 1833. On the verso of the title page, censorship stamp and handwritten signature in Russian.
Signatures and ownership inscriptions of R. Yitzchak Isek Lifshitz of Neshviz, and of R. "Yehuda… Lifshitz". On the back endpaper, ownership inscriptions of R. Shimshon Zakow of Ruzhany and R. Shmuel Leib Levin.
The author was a disciple of R. Chaim of Volozhin, and he founded his teacher's yeshiva in Volozhin, where he served as lecturer for seven years (R. Hillel of Horodna, son-in-law of R. Chaim, writes that "the yeshiva in Volozhin was founded by him, and he studied there, and taught many disciples before my father-in-law R. Chaim"). He later established a yeshiva in Minsk, which he relates to in the preface to this book.
This copy includes 4 rare leaves, "In Commemoration of the Donors", which were appended to some of the copies only. These four leaves contain: regulations of the Minsk yeshiva; correspondence between the rabbis of Minsk and R. Itzele of Volozhin regarding the Minsk yeshiva; letter of R. Hillel of Horodna, son-in-law of R. Chaim of Volozhin; and yeshiva donors listed according to the various Lithuanian towns.
[4], [4], 36; 10 leaves. 21.5 cm. Good-fair condition. Wide margins. High-quality paper, with stains and worming. Detached leaves. Original binding, damaged and detached, lacking spine.
Regarding the author, see: An Anonymous Yeshiva Dean in Volozhin - R. Yechiel Michel of Neshviz, Y. Rivkind, Sefer Turov, Boston, 1938.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 187

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Manuscript – Et Sofer – Morocco, 20th Century

Manuscript, Et Sofer, texts of marriage, divorce and other documents. El Jadida, Morocco, [20th century?].
Semi-cursive Sephardic script. The first page features a flowery text serving as title page, with the name of the book and place of writing. The book includes the texts of many monetary and marriage related contracts.
Inscription on front cover: "This is my Et Sofer, Señor [word deleted] HaKohen".
[1], 1-3, 5-62, 64-70 leaves. Lacking leaves 4 and 63. Altogether: [69] leaves. 18 cm. Good condition. Stains. Several detached leaves. Several places reinforced with tape. Original binding, partially detached, with damage.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 177

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Manuscript – Sample Booklet of an Unpublished Composition – By Rabbi Meir Son of Rabbi Nachman HaLevi – Approbations, Preface and “One Grain as a Sample” – Samov, 1870

Manuscript, sample booklet of a composition, supercommentary to Rashi on the Torah and to Rashi's commentators, by R. Meir son of R. Nachman HaLevi. [Samov (Belarus), ca. 1870].
The booklet begins with the copying of an approbation by R. Yosef Shaul Nathansohn, author of Shoel UMeshiv, written in Lviv, Shevat 1870; and the copying of an approbation by R. Baruch son of R. Sh. Kahana - the rabbi of Yelisavet (Kropyvnytskyi) author of Mekor Baruch VeSefer HaDerushim (R. Baruch Kitaiski of Minsk, a Belarusian rabbi and chassid of the Maharash of Lubavitch). The approbations are followed by a preface and introduction. On the last page: "One Grain as a Sample" of the composition, and at the foot of the page, an inscription disclosing the author's place of residence: "I did not write this in Horki, since I am presently residing in Samov with my son Zalman, and only one booklet is with me here".
The composition, of which this is a sample, was presumably never published. The name of the author is also not known from any other source. The Samov and Horki towns in Belarus (in the Minsk and Mohilev governates), where typically Chabad towns, with a predominance of residents who were Lubavitch chassidim. The Chabad rabbi, R. Meshulam Zalman Neumark (see item 262; and Kedem Auction 63, item 131) served as rabbi of Horki (near Shklow and Lubavitch) between ca. 1850-1862, and in Samov, ca. 1850, R. Eliyahu David son of R. Moshe, who exchanged halachic correspondence with the Tzemach Tzedek, served as posek (see: Indexes to Responsa Tzemach Tzedek, list of rabbis who posed questions, p. 164).
[6] pages. 17 cm. Good-fair condition. Stains and wear.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 168

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Tirat Kesef – Salonika, 1736 – Signature and Glosses of Rabbi David Farhi

Tirat Kesef, homily on the Torah and eulogies, by R. Chaim Avraham Gattegno. Salonika, [1736]. Only edition.
Calligraphic signature at the top of the title page: "The young David Farhi". Alongside the signature, R. David Farhi added an inscription recording the locations of his glosses in the book: "I will say all that is noted in the margins, p. 244b, p. 262a, p. 226a". Indeed, handwritten glosses appear on pp. 244b and 262a. A particularly lengthy gloss on leaf 244, beginning with: "These are the words of David…". The lower margin of leaf 226, where the gloss was presumably inscribed, was trimmed (perhaps due to him retracting his words).
We were not able to ascertain the identity of this R. David Farhi, signer and writer of these glosses. He may have been a member of the noted Farhi family from Damascus (whom R. Chaim Farhi belonged to), or perhaps a Torah scholar of Izmir or Salonica. He may have been the father-in-law of R. Moshe Israel of Rhodes, who quotes his father-in-law's responsa in his book Moshe Yedaber (Salonika, 1815).
Other ownership inscriptions on the title page: "Acquired from the wealthy philanthropist R. Binyamin Mosseri"; "And I acquired it, I the young Shlomo Suchami"; "The young Bechor Matzliach Taconi".
[2], 320 leaves. 30.5 cm. Fair condition. Stains and dampstains. Worming, affecting text. Tear to title page, repaired, and tears to several other leaves. Library stamps. Non-original binding.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 232

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Letter from R. Chaim Nathansohn Rabbi of Wreshna – To Rabbi Eliyahu Guttmacher, “the Tzaddik of Greiditz” – Good Year Wishes

Letter handwritten and signed by R. Chaim Nathansohn Rabbi of Wreshna (Września), addressed to R. Eliyahu Guttmacher Rabbi of Greiditz (Grodzisk Wielkopolski). Wreshna, Elul 1855.
In the letter, R. Chaim relates that the fundraising for Kollel Warsaw (Kollel Polin) in his region is under his responsibility, and ends the letter with blessings for a good year "…for him and his household for posterity, they should be inscribed for good life in the book of the absolute righteous on the upcoming Rosh Hashana". At the beginning of the letter, R. Chaim Nathansohn mentions his mourning over his eldest son "who passed away before his time… in the city of Toruń from cholera… and still today, my heart is not with me since solace is concealed from my eyes…".
R. Chaim Nathansohn (1814-1878), a disciple of R. Akiva Eger Rabbi of Posen (Poznań). A son-in-law of R. David Weisskopf Rabbi of the principality of Wallerstein. A leading rabbi in north-western Poland (region of Posen and the vicinity, then known as Greater Poland, later under German rulership). In 1858, he left the rabbinate in favor of studying in the Kloiz of R. Leib son of R. Shaul in Hamburg (the men studying in the Hamburg Kloiz were leading Torah scholars, including illustrious rabbis who quit their rabbinic position and moved to Hamburg to delve in Torah and worship of G-d, and were supported by a monthly stipend provided from the endowments of the wealthy founder of the Kloiz, R. Leib son of R. Shaul). In 1872, he published Avoda Tama against the initiative of R. Kalischer to renew the offering up of sacrifices in present times. In his preface to this book, he mentions and blesses his only son, R. Avraham. This letter discloses that he once had another son, who passed away at a young age in 1855. His book Even HaTo'im on the laws of cooking on Shabbat was published in 1890.
[1] double leaf. 21 cm. Good condition. Folding marks. Address inscribed on the back leaf.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 29

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Tena’im for the Betrothal of Rabbi Aryeh Finkel – Filled in by Hand of the Bride’s Grandfather Rabbi Aryeh Levin – Jerusalem, 1953

Printed Tena'im, Jerusalem: Sh. Weingarten. Filled in by hand, for the betrothal of the groom R. Aryeh Leib Finkel son of R. Chaim Zev Finkel, to the bride Esther Gittel daughter of R. Shmuel Aharon Yudelevitch. Jerusalem, Shevat 1953.
Signed by the witnesses: R. "Zalman Rotberg" (later dean of the Beit Meir yeshiva, and member of the Moetzet Gedolei HaTorah) and R. "Moshe Mordechai Tz---?". The Tena'im was filled-in in the beautiful handwriting of the bride's grandfather R. Aryeh Levin (the Tzadik of Jerusalem, father-in-law of R. Shmuel Aharon Yudelevitch). The guarantors listed in the Tena'im are R. Chaim Leib (Shmuelevitz, uncle of the groom) and R. Aharon Jacobovitz (uncle of the bride, son-in-law of R. Aryeh Levin).
The groom R. Aryeh Leib Finkel (1931-2016), later served as a dean of the Mir yeshiva in Jerusalem and Modiin Illit (Mir-Brachfeld). A member of the Moetzet Gedolei HaTorah of Degel HaTorah. He was renowned for his righteousness and erudition, for his profound lectures and moving discourses. He greeted one and all with a hearty smile, and showed concern for his fellow Jew with exceptional friendliness and warmth. Many would turn to him in quest of blessings and salvation, and to merit to gaze upon his glowing countenance. He was a member of the directorate of reputed charity organizations and participated in the prayer journeys they arranged to the gravesites of great rabbis in Europe. Since its founding by a group of his disciples, he also served as president of the international youth organization Avot UBanim (where fathers and sons learn together on Shabbat and festivals).
[1] leaf. 41 cm. Good condition. Folding marks and filing holes.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 244

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Two Letters from Hungarian Rabbis – Rabbi Shaul Friedenthal and Rabbi Eliyahu Menachem Goitein

Two manuscripts of Torah thoughts, handwritten by Hungarian rabbis in the 19th century:
• Letter handwritten and signed by R. Shaul Friedenthal head of the Bonyhád Beit Din, addressed to R. Eliyahu Menachem Goitein Rabbi of Hőgyész. At the foot of the letter, a draft of the reply letter appears, handwritten and signed by R. Eliyahu Menachem Goitein. Bonyhád and Hőgyész, Adar I 1867.
• Official stationery paper of R. Eliyahu Menachem Goitein Rabbi of Hőgyész - four pages of Torah novellae in his handwriting.
R. Eliyahu Menachem Goitein (1839-1902. Otzar HaRabbanim 2287), son and successor of R. Tzvi Hirsh Goitein Rabbi of Hőgyész (d. 1859. Otzar HaRabbanim 17220), and grandson of R. Bendit Goitein Rabbi of Hőgyész, author of Kesef Nivchar (1770-1841. Otzar HaRabbanim 4191). The Torah novellae of these three generation of Hőgyész rabbis were published in the book Zichron Avot (The Kesef Nivchar and his Descendants, Bnei Brak, 1971). These manuscripts were not included in the book (section 71 contains a lengthy correspondence between R. Shaul Friedenthal, other rabbis and R. Eliyahu Menachem, on the topic discussed in these letters. The published letters are from the dates: Rosh Chodesh Adar I Eve 1867, 2nd Adar I, 14th Adar I, 20th Adar II - yet this letter from R. Friedenthal dated 8th Adar I 1867 was not included).
R. Shaul Friedenthal (d. 1883. Otzar HaRabbanim 17986) was the head of the Bonyhád Beit Din, a position he held for 50 years (since 1833). Son of R. Yehuda Leib Lisa Rabbi of Rechnitz (Otzar HaRabbanim 7326), and son-in-law of R. Shmelke Meisels Rabbi of Jelšovce (1781-1855. Otzar HaRabbanim 19656). In 1856, he published Geviat Shmuel - ethical will of his father-in-law R. Shmelke Meisels and eulogies.
2 items, 5 written pages. Varying size, good condition. Stains.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 147

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Beit Hillel – Dyhernfurth, 1691 / Knesset HaGedola – Fürth, 1692 – Signature of Rabbi Binyamin Niederhofheim, who Hosted the Minyan of Rabbi Natan Adler

Beit Hillel, Parts I and II, on Shulchan Aruch Yoreh De'ah and Even HaEzer, by R. Hillel Hertz. Dyhernfurth: R. Shabtai Meshorer Bass author of the Siftei Chachamim super commentary to Rashi on the Torah, [1691]. First edition. Bound with: Knesset HaGedola, on Shulchan Aruch Choshen Mishpat, by R. Chaim Benveniste. Fürth, [1692]. Second edition.
On the title page of Beit Hillel, several ownership inscriptions (partially trimmed and deleted): "Acquisition of my money… Zelig Bielfel[d], 17th Adar 1714…"; "…Binyamin son of R. Hirsch Nieder---"; "Presented to me as a gift --- son of R. Zalman ---"; stamp of Baron Wilhelm Carl von Rothschild's collection (from Frankfurt); and more. Signature on the title page of Knesset HaGedola: "Zelig Bielfeld".
R. Binyamin Niederhofheim (1810-1855), owner of this book, was a merchant and outstanding Torah scholar, a renowned and expert Mohel (who circumcised 7,110 babies!). A prominent member of the Frankfurt am Main community in the time of R. Shimshon Refael Hirsch (he even merited to have R. Shimshon Refael Hirsch buried near him). He authored Dinei Milah - a composition printed in R. Moshe Brück's Sefer HaBrit (Frankfurt am Main, 1841). He hosted in his home the minyam (prayer quorum) perpetuating the distinctive customs of R. Natan Adler of Frankfurt am Main, teacher of the Chatam Sofer. R. Natan Adler had originally established a private minyan in his home, which prayed following the Sephardi rite. After his passing, his disciple R. Leib Emmerich upheld this minyan, and in 1818, it was transferred to the home of the son-in-law of his son-in-law, R. Binyamin Niederhofheim, where it continued being held until the Holocaust, and was known as the "Niederhofheim'sche Shul". R. Binyamin owned a large private library, which also included rare manuscripts.
Two books in one volume. [1], 134; [1], 49; 196 leaves. 29.5 cm. Several darkened leaves. Most leaves in good condition. Stains. Marginal worming to title page and several subsequent leaves. Ink stain to foot of title page, with tears from ink erosion. Old binding, with damage.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 159

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Biur Milot HaHigayon by the Rambam – Berlin, 1784 – Copy of R. Wolf Hamburg Rabbi and Rosh Yeshiva of Fürth, with his Signatures

Biur Milot HaHigayon by the Rambam, with the commentary of "R. Moshe of Dessau author of Netivot HaShalom" (Moshe Mendelssohn). Berlin, 1784.
Copy of R. Binyamin Wolf Hamburg of Fürth. On the title page, subsequent leaf and last leaf, ownership inscriptions and signatures in his handwriting: "I acquired it with my wealth in honor of my Creator, Wolf Hamburger here, Fürth", "I acquired it with my wealth in honor of my Rock and Creator, Wolf Hamburger son of R. Lipman Hamburger, residing here - Fürth".
R. Avraham Binyamin Zev Wolf Hamburg (1770-1850) was a leading German rabbi in his generation. A close disciple of the Maharzach, author of Bigdei Kehuna, and his successor as rabbi and yeshiva dean of Fürth. An outstanding Torah scholar and leader of German Jewry, he was also a wealthy figure. He authored Shaar HaZekenim (two parts), Simlat Binyamin and others. A native of Fürth, he was raised and continued elevating himself there, later replacing his teacher the Maharzach in various functions, and after the latter's passing, succeeding him in all his positions, as rabbi and yeshiva dean. He battled against the Reform movement, and during his tenure, the yeshiva was shut down due to his refusal to introduce secular subjects and transform it into a modern seminary for rabbinical training. He expended almost all his wealth on this battle. He edified many disciples, including R. Yaakov Yukev Ettlinger, the Aruch LaNer. The Chatam Sofer in his letters to him addresses him as "The outstanding and renowned Torah scholar… a double-edged sword… first to speak up in every place…". The Ketav Sofer eulogized him: "The prominent Torah scholar, erudite and sharp… who served as yeshiva dean for many years in Fürth, he was the leading Torah scholar of the generation and a righteous man, pillar of the world, stood in the breach to stave off destructive forces, he gave up his life for Torah and fulfilled the commandment of loving G-d with all one's being and possessions - even if He takes one's life and wealth" (see: Kinstlicher, Ishim UTeshuvot Chatam Sofer, pp. 39-40; see Hamburger, HaYeshiva HaRama BeFiurda, vol. III, pp. 35-144 for a detailed biography of R. Wolf Hamburg).
[4], 30 leaves. 20 cm. Good-fair condition. Stains and wear. Binding damaged, lacking back cover.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 245

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Letter of Torah Thoughts by Rabbi Moshe Freund-Grieshaber

Letter handwritten and signed by R. Moshe Freund-Grieshaber. [Gyönk, 1868].
Addressed to his friend R. Eliyahu Menachem Goitein Rabbi of Hőgyész. Lengthy letter, mostly consisting of Torah thoughts. He mentions in passing a thought he heard from his teacher the Chatam Sofer, who remarked that pilpul is considered the crown of the Torah.
At the end of the letter, he writes in a somewhat enigmatic way, about buying copies of "the renowned book which is a great necessity for upholding Torah observance". He writes that he agreed together with R. Avraham Pollak to purchase ten copies of the book, and is willing to absorb the cost if he does not succeed in selling them. It is unclear which book he is referring to. This letter was published in Zichron Avot, 1971 (section 81), together with a letter which R. Eliyahu Menachem had sent earlier to R. Moshe Freund. That letter also mentions the book only in elusive terms, yet it appears that R. Azriel Hildesheimer, close friend of R. Eliyahu Menachem, was also involved in this matter.
R. Moshe Freund-Grieshaber (also known as R. Moshe Paks, 1797-1873), leading disciple of the Chatam Sofer. Son of R. Yitzchak Itzek Grieshaber-Freund Rabbi of Paks. After his marriage in 1815 to the daughter of a wealthy man from Gyönk, he settled there, delving in Torah and worship of G-d without needing to serve as rabbi. Several of the Chatam Sofer's responsa are addressed to him (see: Kinstlicher, HaChatam Sofer VeTalmidav, pp. 358-360).
The recipient of the letter, R. Eliyahu Menachem Goitein (1838-1902), was the son of R. Tzvi Hirsch Goitein and grandson of R. Baruch Bendit Goitein author of Kesef Nivchar. He was a disciple of the Ketav Sofer. Like his father and grandfather, he served as rabbi of Hőgyész. See previous item.
[1] double leaf. 21 cm. Fair-poor condition. Thin paper, dark ink showing through to verso, tears from ink erosion, affecting text.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 319

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Three Letters of Protest from Rabbis of Zvhil and Rivne, Regarding a Shochet and Bodek who was Dismissed from his Position – 1900 / Lithograph Letter from Rebbe Moshe Mordechai Twersky of Makariv

Four letters related to R. Pinchas Shlomo HaLevi Reisels, who served as a shochet and bodek in the town of Slisht (Sosnove). These include three letters of protest by rabbis of Zvhil (Novohrad-Volynskyi) and Rivne, which were sent to the rabbi of Slisht upon his dismissal as shochet and bodek, and a lithograph letter by Rebbe Moshe Mordechai Twersky of Makariv sent to R. Pinchas Shlomo.
1-2. Two large leaves, a letter from R. Moshe Shmuel Sde-Lavan Rabbi of Zvhil (author of Nachalat Avot, Jerusalem 1926), to R. Mordechai Merkil Rabbi of Slisht. Zvhil, 1900. Protest against the dismissal of R. Pinchas Shlomo HaLevi Reisels from his position.
On the verso of the same leaf, after the end of R. Moshe Shmuel's letter, is the beginning of another letter from R. Yitzchak Shlomo Yoel Sherman Rabbi of Rivne. Rabbi Sherman's letter continues on another leaf. This letter, too, is addressed to R. Mordechai Merkil Rabbi of Slisht, protesting his dismissal.
3. Letter by R. Shmuel Rothenberg, dayan and posek in Rivne, to R. Mordechai Merkil Rabbi of Slisht concerning the same issue.
4. Lithograph of a handwritten letter, by Rebbe Moshe Mordechai Twersky of Makariv, containing a request to give a donation to his emissary "R. Chaim Ze'ev Shapira". Sent to "R. Pinchas Shlomo shochet and bodek" (the aforementioned R. Pinchas Shlomo Reisels). The names of the recipient and of the emissary are filled in by hand (apparently, in the Rebbe's handwriting).
Rebbe Moshe Mordechai Twersky of Makariv (1845-1920, Encyclopedia of Chasidut, III, pp. 363-364), son of Rebbe Yaakov Yitzchak of Makariv, descended from the Chernobyl dynasty. Son-in-law of Rebbe Yehoshua of Belz. In 1892 he was appointed Rebbe in Makariv, and in 1910 relocated to Berdychiv.
4 documents. Size varies. Fair condition. Stains, tears and wear.
These letters have been published with an extensive introduction by R. Moshe Shochet, in the Bet Aharon V'Yisrael anthology, Year 33, Issue 1 (193), Tishrei-Cheshvan 5778, pp. 28-36.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 52

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Siddur Avodat Yisrael – Philadelphia, 1885

Avodat Yisrael, Israelitish Prayer Book, for all the public services of the year, edited by M. [Marcus] Jastrow. Philadelphia, 1885. Hebrew and English. Two volumes.
Non-traditional siddur and machzor, based on Ashkenazi-rite. Hebrew with English translation, on facing pages. Stereotyped from the 1873 Philadelphia edition.
Separate title page: Songs and prayers and meditations for Divine services of Israelites. Compiled by B. [Benjamin] Szold. This part contains poems and prayers in English, translated from German by Marcus Jastrow.
Five parts in two volumes. Vol. I: VIII, 124, [3], 530-590, [7], 104, IV pages. Vol. II: [5], 128-526 pages. 18 cm. Overall good condition. Stains. Several detached leaves. Original binding, with minor damage.
Singerman 2399 (mentioned there in a note). Not listed in Goldman.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 256

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Letter from Rabbi Amram Tzvi Grünwald

Letter handwritten and signed by R. Amram Tzvi Grünwald, "writing at the behest of the Rebbe", regarding fundraising. Addressed to "The great Torah scholar… rabbi of Shotz (Suceava)". [No place and date indicated, presumably Visheve, ca. 1935].
R. Amram Tzvi Grünwald (1907-1951), was a renowned and righteous Torah scholar. Grandson of R. Moshe Grünwald Rabbi of Khust author of Arugat HaBosem, and son of R. Yekutiel Yehuda Grünwald Rabbi of Yara (Yaruha). He was the disciple of his uncle R. Avraham Yosef Grünwald Rabbi of Ungvar author of Avnei Shoham, and of his great-uncle R. Eliezer David Grünwald Rabbi of Satmar author of Keren LeDavid. Following his wedding, he settled in Oyber-Visheve (Vişeu de Sus), and after several years, was appointed maggid and posek of the city. In ca. 1935, the rabbi of the city Rebbe Menachem Mendel Hager travelled to the United States, and appointed R. Amram Tzvi to replace him as head of the yeshiva (it is unclear on behalf of which Rebbe this letter was written: whether on behalf of Rebbe Menachem Mendel Rabbi of Visheve, in whose yeshiva R. Amram Tzvi served as lecturer, or perhaps in the name of his teacher, his great-uncle R. Eliezer David Grünwald, while studying under him in the Satmar yeshiva, in his youth in the 1920s]. Following the Holocaust, in which he lost his wife and entire family, he remarried and served as rabbi in the Föhrenwald DP camp. In 1949, he reached the United States, yet shortly later passed away suddenly at the age of 45. His surviving novellae where published in Zichron Amram Tzvi (Brooklyn N.Y., 2010).
[1] leaf. 14.5X11.5 cm. Good condition. Stains.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 160

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Two Books with Signatures of R. Meir (Marcus) Lehmann, Rabbi of Mainz

Two books printed in Karlsruhe, bearing signatures of R. Meir (Marcus) Lehmann, Rabbi of Mainz, foremost Orthodox rabbi and author in 19th century Germany.
• Yaarot Devash, homilies by R. Yehonatan Eybeschutz. Part I. Karlsruhe, [1779]. First edition. Signature on title page: "Meir Lehmann", and other handwritten inscriptions.
[4], 116 leaves. 20.5 cm. Good-fair condition. Wear and stains. Detached leaves. Original binding, torn and damaged.
• Shemot BaAretz. Novellae on Tractates Rosh Hashanah, Yoma and Sukkah, by R. Moshe ibn Chaviv, author of Get Pashut. Karlsruhe, [1766]. Second edition. Signature on title page: "Meir Lehmann"; early ownership inscription signed "…Yaakov Schwab" and other handwritten inscriptions.
[2], 16; 30; 41 leaves. 33.5 cm. Good-fair condition. Stains and wear. Original, quarter-leather binding, slightly damaged.
R. Meir (Marcus) Lehmann (1831-1890), Rabbi of Mainz, was a foremost German rabbi, editor of Der Israelit and champion of Jewish Orthodoxy in Germany. He composed many books, including commentaries to Pirkei Avot and to the Bible, books of Jewish thought and philosophy, in addition to dozens of story books written with the purpose of drawing Jewish youth to fear of G-d and moral conduct.

Opening300$ Unsold

Auction 65 Lot Number 170

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Two Large Leaves Handwritten by the Chatam Sofer – Novellae on Tractate Bava Metzia

Two leaves (four written pages - over 162 lines) handwritten by R. Moshe Sofer, author of Chatam Sofer. Novellae on tractate Bava Metzia, folios 67-69.
Two medium-size leaves, filled on both sides with the handwriting of the Chatam Sofer. The headings of the pages read: "With the help of G-d, Chapter of Ribbit…".
Near the top of the first leaf, line 5, the Chatam Sofer writes: "And I saw that all the Acharonim write differently, and though their little finger is thicker than my loins, I nevertheless wrote what appears to me, and the one who studies it will judge". At the foot of the page, a gloss was added in the handwriting of the Chatam Sofer: "And my disciple R. Zalman Bonnhard argued in a different way… and it is correct".
On the verso of that same leaf, the Chatam Sofer writes: "And the words I am writing here in answer, really parallel the words of the Nekudat HaKesef, and I am fortunate that my thoughts corresponded with his esteemed opinion, and since every Beit Midrash contributes something new, I did not refrain from writing my thoughts…".
These novellae were published in Chiddushei HaChatam Sofer on Tractate Bava Metzia, Jerusalem 1991, pp. 87-90.
2 leaves (4 written pages). Over 162 autograph lines. 32 cm. Good condition. Stains.

Opening20,000$ Sold For34,440$ Including buyers premium

Auction 65 Lot Number 333

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Letter from Rabbi Yoel of Satmar – Regarding Rescue Matters

Letter handwritten and signed by R. Yoel Teitelbaum Rabbi of Satmar. [Satmar (Satu Mare), ca. 1942?].
Addressed to R. Pinchas David Freudiger (Phillip von Freudiger, community leader in Budapest, son-in-law of R. Akiva Sofer Rabbi of Pressburg, the Daat Sofer). The Rebbe writes: "…I was informed that you have a sum of money in my name for the purpose of saving lives, and there are a number of details I need to discuss with you regarding it. If circumstances would have allowed it, I would have travelled in person to Pest for this purpose, but for several reasons, I am absolutely unable to travel at the moment… therefore I have delegated two respected community members, R. Shimon Nemeth and R. Yehoshua Freund, to discuss this topic with you, as if I were speaking to you myself, and may G-d speedily have mercy on the remnants of His people…".
This letter is undated, and does not give clear indication as to which period it was written in and which rescue it is referring to. One can presume that it dates back to the Holocaust, since R. Pinchas David Freudiger was the community leader in Budapest at the beginning of the Holocaust and was very involved in rescue activities.
Rebbe Yoel Teitelbaum of Satmar (1887-1979) was the youngest son of Rebbe Chananya Yom Tov Lipa, the Kedushat Yom Tov (1836-1904), and grandson of Rebbe Yekutiel Yehuda, the Yitav Lev (1808-1883), who both served as rabbis of Sighet (Sighetu Marmației) and were leaders of Chassidic Jewry in the Maramureș region.
He was renowned from his youth as a leading Torah scholar of his generation, for his perspicacity and intellectual capacities, as well as for his holiness and outstanding purity. After his marriage with the daughter of Rebbe Avraham Chaim Horowitz of Polaniec, he settled in Satmar and taught Torah and Chassidut to an elite group of disciples and followers. At a young age, he was appointed rabbi of Irshava. In 1925, he was appointed rabbi of Carei (in place of R. Shaul Brach who went to serve as rabbi of Kashoi), and in 1934, of Satmar (Satu Mare). In all the places he served as rabbi, he also maintained a large yeshiva and Chassidic court.
During the Holocaust, he was rescued through the famous Kastner Train, and after a journey through Bergen-Belsen, Switzerland and Eretz Israel, he reached the United States, where he established the largest Chassidic group in the world - Satmar Chassidut, until today the dominant faction in American Orthodox Jewry. He was one of the founding pillars of Chassidic Jewry after the Holocaust and served as president of the Eda HaCharedit in Jerusalem. He was a leading opponent of Zionism and of the founding of the State of Israel, and zealously led vital battles for the preservation of the unique character of the Jewish people and its holiness, fearful for the honor of the Torah and the future of faithful Jewry. He was renowned as an exceptionally charitable person; his door was open to the poor and his ear attentive to the needy from every stream of the Jewish people. An outstanding Torah scholar, he responded to many halachic queries, and his writings resulted in the publishing of dozens of books: VaYoel Moshe, Responsa Divrei Yoel, Divrei Yoel on the Torah and more.
[1] double leaf, official stationery. 23.5 cm. Approx. 16 autograph lines and signature. Good condition. Wear, creases and folding marks.

Opening10,000$ Sold For12,300$ Including buyers premium

Auction 65 Lot Number 98

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Tehillim with Maamadot – Slavita, 1827 – Copy Lacking Title Page

Tehillim with Maamadot. Slavita: [R. Moshe Shapira Rabbi of Slavita and son] R. Shmuel Avraham Shapira, 1827. With approbation by Rebbe Mordechai of Chernobyl.
Title page states: "Printed by the son of the rabbi of Slavita, R. Shmuel Avraham Shapira". However, the three approbations printed at the beginning of the book clearly state that the publisher and printer was the father, R. Moshe Shapira Rabbi of Slavita (founder and owner of the printing press, from its establishment until its closing - introduction to the chapter).
145, [146]-178 leaves. Separate title page for the Maamadot section. Lacking title page and subsequent leaf of approbations (both leaves replaced with professional photocopies). 18 cm. Good-fair condition. Marginal tears to leaves 1-4, 81, 92, 97, some affecting text. Some tears repaired with paper. Worming. Stains. Wear. Early leather binding, damaged and detached, lacking spine.

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

Auction 65 Lot Number 303

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Three Lines Handwritten and Signed by the First Rebbe of Munkacs, R. Shlomo Shapiro Rabbi of Munkacs, Author of Shem Shlomo – Signature of R. Eliezer Zucker Rabbi of Beregsaz – 1887

Leaf from a donors ledger for "Eretz Israel funds" - lists of donations and donors from Munkacs and Beregsaz, with the addition of three lines handwritten, signed and stamped by Rebbe Shlomo Shapiro of Munkacs. Munkacs (Mukachevo) and Beregsaz (Berehove), Tammuz 1887.
At the top of one page, a penciled inscription: "Munkacs", followed by a list of donors and charity collectors in Munkacs, and a letter of blessings and recommendation handwritten and signed by the rabbi of the town, Rebbe Shlomo Shapiro: "Certainly, giving charity is an extremely exalted deed, especially when benefiting the public, as is described in this ledger in the poetic writings by great and righteous men, therefore, I too ask of my brethren, descendants of Avraham the merciful one, to give their generous donations, and the merit of the many is appended to you, and may you be blessed with much good… Thursday, 2nd day of Rosh Chodesh Tammuz 1887, Munkacs - Shlomo Shapiro". With the rabbi's stamp: "Shlomo Shapiro Rabbi of Munkacs and the region". A list of names to be mentioned in prayer, handwritten and signed by the charity gabbai, R. "Chaim Elazar HaKohen son of Sarah Hartstein". At the head of the list of donors is an inscription handwritten by the charity gabbai: "The rabbi gave the sum of…".
The second page contains a list of donors from Beregsaz, ending with an inscription handwritten by the gabbai, with the signature of one of the dayanim of the town: "Eliezer Zucker, posek of this town", his stamp: "Eliezer Zucker, dayan and posek of Beregsaz", and the signature: "Alexander… Weissberger, gabbai of the synagogue and collector of Eretz Israel funds".
Rebbe Shlomo Shapiro Rabbi of Munkacs (1831-1893), first rebbe of the Munkacs dynasty. He was the son of R. Elazar of Lantzut (Łańcut) and grandson of R. Tzvi Elimelech of Dinov (Dynów) author of Bnei Yissaschar. His son was Rebbe Tzvi Hirsh Shapiro Rabbi of Munkacs, author of Darchei Teshuva. His grandson, Rebbe Chaim Elazar Shapiro Rabbi of Munkacs author of Minchat Elazar, describes his exceptional holiness and the wondrous and healing impact of his singing on the hearts of his listeners. He left behind several manuscript compositions on Halacha and Aggadah named Shem Shlomo, yet he commanded in his will not to publish any of them, since he had not completed them and rendered them fit for printing, and for another reason he did not disclose. His teachings were copied in many places in the books of his sons and grandsons. In his will, he instructed to write only the following praise in his epitaph: "Did good in religious matters for the town in general and for individuals".
R. Eliezer Zucker (1858-1920), son-in-law of R. Avraham Yehuda Schwartz author of Kol Aryeh. In his youth, he studied under the Divrei Chaim of Sanz, who greatly cherished him, and he was amongst the elite of his young disciples. In 1884, he was appointed rabbi of Beregsaz. He authored Responsa Damesek Eliezer (Beregsaz, 1932) and Magdanot Eliezer on the Torah (Bratislava, 1921). R. Shlomo Zalman Ehrenreich, a relative, writes in his approbation to his book Damesek Eliezer: "…the profound Torah scholar and prince, pious and holy… we delved together in pilpul and in very many laws, and I was always amazed by the scope of his profound and in-depth study…".
[1] leaf. 28.5 cm. Written on both sides. Good condition. Dampstains. Small marginal tears, not affecting text.

Opening6,000$ Sold For7,380$ Including buyers premium

Auction 65 Lot Number 129

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Tehillim – Warsaw, 1864 – Segulah Book – Edition Published by Rebbe Yitzchak of Neshchiz – Incomplete Copy

Tehillim with the Rashi and Metzudot commentaries, Yiddish translation and Seder Maamadot by the Rebbe of Apta. Warsaw: R. Nathan Schriftgisser, 1864.
Separate title page for Seder Maamadot.
This edition, which was published for public benefit, was funded by Rebbe Yitzchak of Neshchiz (Nesukhoyezhe), as stated on the title page of his book Toldot Yitzchak (Warsaw, 1868) and in his biography Zichron Tov (p. 49, new edition p. 84).
This Tehillim is reputed as a Segulah book, and though it was printed at the time in six thousand copies, not many copies are extant today. The book Zichron Tov relates (Regarding his Charitability, section 4) that in 1864, the Rebbe decided to print Tehillim books and sell them at half the cost price, "so that people would choose to buy them and recite Tehillim daily, to benefit the public, and in the honor of King David his ancestor, and he printed some six thousand… and bound them in leather". He originally intended to sell each copy for only two Gulden, yet after a fire destroyed his Beit Midrash, he raised the price to one ruble each, in order to finance its rebuilding. "As each book was sold, the Rebbe would hold it in his hand, granting a blessing to the recipient of the Tehillim, and sometimes kissing the Tehillim before handing it to the buyer". The book further relates of R. Yitzchak of Neshchiz's reticence in public, and how in the last year of his life, he departed from this custom and delivered discourses of his novellae on the weekly portion and of his commentary on Tehillim. When presenting the latter, "the Rebbe would hold… the Tehillim printed in Warsaw, expounding from it his Torah novellae" (ibid, Regarding his Torah Novellae, section 11).
The main title page and the title page of Seder Maamadot state that the Maamadot were compiled "according to the renowned Torah scholar… R. Avraham Yehoshua Heshel of Apta" (the Ohev Yisrael, Rebbe of Apta). The approbation of the Ohev Yisrael's son, R. Yitzchak Meir of Zinkov (from the Medzhybizh 1827 edition), is presented on the verso of the title page of Seder Maamadot.
Rebbe Yitzchak of Neshchiz (1789-1868) was the youngest son of Rebbe Mordechai of Neshchiz. A close disciple of R. Levi Yitzchak of Berditchev, he married his granddaughter and transmitted many Torah thoughts in his name. He was also a disciple of R. Baruch of Medzhybizh and of the Chozeh of Lublin. Appointed Rebbe at a young age, he held this position for over sixty years. He was reputed for his prayers, the wonders he performed, and his Heavenly revelations. He was revered by all sects of Chassidism for his holiness and exceptional piety, and as one "who facilitates the flow of Heavenly bounty to the entire Jewish people" (as stated in a letter by R. Baruch Shapira, prominent Chassid of the Peshischa and Kotsk dynasties). His renowned disciples include: Rebbe Elimelech of Grodzisk, Rebbe Yaakov Tzvi of Parysów and others.
Incomplete copy: 303, [1], 2-23, 26-31 leaves. Lacking 4 leaves: Title page and subsequent leaf of Tehillim (replaced in photocopy) and leaves 24-25 of Seder Maamadot. 19 cm. Most leaves in good-fair condition. Stains and light wear. Tears. Tears and worming to some leaves (mostly at beginning of book), affecting text, repaired, with professional photocopy replacement. New leather binding.

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

Auction 65 Lot Number 293

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Letter from Rebbe Aharon of Chernobyl

Letter signed by Rebbe Aharon of Chernobyl, addressed to the philanthropist R. Yehuda Shmuel.
Written during a fundraising campaign for an important cause, the Rebbe mandates him to donate the sum of twenty-five silver ruble to charity. Written by a scribe with the handwritten signature of the Rebbe: "So says Aharon son of the renowned R. Mordechai". The sum "twenty-five silver ruble" was also handwritten by the Rebbe.
Rebbe Aharon Twersky of Chernobyl (1787-1871) was a foremost and elder rebbe in his generation and prominent leader of the Jewish and Chassidic world in the mid-19th century. He was the eldest son of Rebbe Mordechai of Chernobyl and his ancestors' successor as rebbe of Chernobyl. He received his education from his grandfather Rebbe Menachem Nachum of Chernobyl, the Meor Einayim. Already during his father's lifetime, he occupied a central position in the Chassidic world, and his father wrote of him that he shields the generation by the scope of his holiness. After his father's passing in 1838, the latter's eight sons began serving as rebbes in various cities, yet the eldest son R. Aharon acceded to his father's position in Chernobyl. His brothers all treated him with great deference and recognized his supremacy even in private matters. Rebbe Aharon himself was aware of the authority he held and would address the public in resolute and unyielding terms. This letter discloses the Rebbe's firmness also in relating to wealthy people and philanthropists, as he warns the philanthropist to realize the donation in full as he was commanded, and thereby merit blessings for all the good and success.
[1] double leaf. 21 cm. Good condition. Creases and folding marks. Light stains.

Opening5,000$ Sold For13,530$ Including buyers premium

Auction 65 Lot Number 270

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Letter from Rabbi Chaim HaLevi Soloveitchik of Brisk to Baron Günzburg – Regarding the Reopening of the Volozhin Yeshiva – Volozhin, 1899

Letter from R. Chaim HaLevi Soloveitchik Rabbi of Brisk. [Volozhin (Valozhyn)], Tevet 1899.
Addressed to the Jewish Baron Naftali Herz (Horace) Günzburg, regarding the reopening of the Volozhin yeshiva. From this letter, it appears that the reestablishment of the yeshiva took the form of an independent organization of Torah learners who gathered together, and later summoned R. Refael Shapiro to come stand at their helm. (This form of reopening the yeshiva, through an independent gathering of Torah learners, is echoed in the letter of his father-in-law R. Refael Shapiro to Baron Günzburg, see previous item. The two letters were written under the same circumstances and on the same date, and contain parallel terms):
"Behold, the prestige and holiness of the illustrious Volozhin yeshiva is already recognized by the entire Jewish people, as it illuminated the face of the earth and produced light - the light of Torah for the Jewish people… and now, a very large group of people have gathered there… and are diligently investing all their strength in Torah study, many of them are exceptional Torah scholars, perspicacious, erudite and witty students… And behold, the great and renowned Torah scholar… R. Refael Rabbi of Babruysk appeared in his glory at the gates of Volozhin, and accepted the position of yeshiva dean and rabbi of Volozhin, and the yeshiva of Volozhin has reclaimed its previous stature, once again illuminating the world, and the Torah has returned to its lodgings". R. Chaim further writes of the journey of the emissary R. Shmuel Ben Zion Shapiro, who is travelling "to establish and increase sources of income, in view of the finances of the yeshiva and its great expenses".
R. Chaim HaLevi Soloveitchik (1853-1918), rabbi of Brisk (Brest, Belarus), was a foremost Torah scholar in Lithuania and one of the leaders of his generation. He is considered the initiator of the learning method in Lithuanian yeshivot. Son of R. Yosef Dov Soloveitchik, the Beit HaLevi, and son-in-law of R. Refael Shapiro, dean of the Volozhin yeshiva and son-in-law of the Netziv. After his marriage, he began serving as the third dean of the Volozhin yeshiva. (The disciples of R. Chaim from that period include: R. Baruch Ber Leibowitz, R. Shimon Yehuda Shkop and R. Chaim Ozer Grodzinski), and with R. Refael's move in 1881 to Babruysk, R. Chaim was appointed second yeshiva dean in his place. After the passing of his father the Beit HaLevi in 1894, he succeeded him as rabbi of Brisk, and continued teaching Torah to a small group of elite students who gathered to absorb his teachings, and who later disseminated his study method in all Lithuanian yeshivot, orally and in writing. Many novellae circulated orally in his name within Lithuanian yeshivot, transmitted and copied by many writers (some were later printed in the mimeographed edition of Chiddushei HaGrach, published in Eretz Israel ca. the 1950s).
In 1899, his father-in-law R. Refael Shapiro left the rabbinate of the great city of Babruysk, and returned to serve as rabbi of the small town of Volozhin, and to head the yeshiva, restoring it to its former glory (according to several sources, R. Refael was the one who initiated the reopening of the yeshiva, though M. Tzinovitz in his book Etz Chaim - History of the Volozhin Yeshiva (chapter 27, pp. 353-355) writes that when R. Refael reached Volozhin, some two hundred men had already gathered to study there. In the HaMelitz journal of 1899, an article was published from Babruysk, describing the rabbi's departure for Volozhin, due to an initiative by some Minsk philanthropists to reopen the yeshiva. The present letter also insinuates that R. Refael came to Volozhin after the students had gathered anew, "and he accepted the position of yeshiva dean and rabbi of Volozhin").
The Baron Naftali Herz (Horace) Günzburg (1833-1909), banker and wealthy businessman, philanthropist and public activist. Bearer of a title of nobility, and general-consul in Russia. The bank he headed was one of the largest banks in the Russian empire. He utilized his connections and stature to assist his Jewish brethren in Tsarist Russia, defending them from decrees and improving their financial situation.
[1] leaf. 28 cm. Very good condition. Folding marks.

Opening5,000$ Sold For12,300$ Including buyers premium

Auction 65 Lot Number 37

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Gevurot HaShem – Commentary of the Maharal on the Passover Haggadah – First Edition – Kraków, 1582 – Glosses from the Period of the Printing

Gevurot HaShem, Passover and the Exodus from Egypt, with a commentary to the Passover Haggadah by R. Yehuda Loew - the Maharal of Prague. Kraków: Isaac ben Aaron Prostitz, 1582. First edition, published anonymously in the Maharal's lifetime.
In the margins: Over twenty corrections in early Ashkenazic script (from the period of the printing).
Early signature on the title page, in Ashkenazic script: "Shlomo son of R. Moshe Yissachar".
93, [3] leaves. 29 cm. Thick, high-quality paper. Good-fair condition. Stains. Open tears to inner margins of title page and other leaves, not affecting text, repaired. Light worming (repaired). New leather binding.
Yaari 23. Otzar HaHaggadot 29.

Opening5,000$ Sold For9,840$ Including buyers premium
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