Moznaim LeMishpot by Rabbi Zvi Hirsch Kalischer, Koenigsberg, 1855.

I usually write about Anglo-Judaica, however this book is from my general antique book collection.  It is the only edition of a detailed clarification of the Shulhan Arukh, Hoshen Mishpat written by R. Zvi Hirsch ben Solomon Kalischer. Rabbi Kalischer (1795 - 1874) was an early proponent of the Zionist idea.  He was born in … Continue reading Moznaim LeMishpot by Rabbi Zvi Hirsch Kalischer, Koenigsberg, 1855.

Ein Yaakov, Amsterdam, 1742 (the Jews College, London copy).

Ein Yaakov is a 16th century compilation of the non-legalistic and folklore-like stories that are in the Talmud, together with commentaries.  It was compiled by Yaakov ben Shlomo ibn Habib and his son Rabbi Levi ibn Habib. This edition includes commentaries that illuminate the meaning of the text and provide additional insights, including the commentary … Continue reading Ein Yaakov, Amsterdam, 1742 (the Jews College, London copy).

Masseches Shabbos, Sultzbach, 1755 – from the Manchester Machzike Hadas.

I recently purchased this volume from one of my favorite book dealers, Israel Mizrachi of Brooklyn.  Two things caught my eye. The first is that while I have other volumes of this edition of the Talmud, Shabbos is scarce.  This is because everyone learns Shabbos - those who follow the "daf yomi" program of learning … Continue reading Masseches Shabbos, Sultzbach, 1755 – from the Manchester Machzike Hadas.

Chochmas Shlomo by the Maharshal, Rabbi Solomon Luria, Brinn (Brno), 1796 – once in the Library of Yeshivas Chachmei Lublin.

This book is from my antique book collection. Yeshivas Chachmei Lublin means the Rabbinical School of the Sages of Lublin, which is in Poland.  This large and legendary school was opened in 1930 and included a significant and growing library of tens of thousands of important rabbinical texts.  The library was supposed to have been … Continue reading Chochmas Shlomo by the Maharshal, Rabbi Solomon Luria, Brinn (Brno), 1796 – once in the Library of Yeshivas Chachmei Lublin.

What was Rabbi Ferber reading? Tsuf Dvash by Vidal Tsarfati, 1718, Amsterdam.

Before we discuss the book itself, which is interesting in its own right, it is inscribed twice, has a marginal note, and has the ownership stamp in red ink, of Rabbi Tzvi Hirsh Ferber. Rabbi Ferber was born in Slobodka, a suburb of Kovno, Lithuania, in 1879. He was a renowned Torah and Talmudic scholar … Continue reading What was Rabbi Ferber reading? Tsuf Dvash by Vidal Tsarfati, 1718, Amsterdam.

Sefer Shalos uTshuvos (Responsa) of Rabbi Solomon Luria, Furth 1768 – from Jews College London.

This book of responsa (questions and answers) is by Rabbi Solomon Luria.  Solomon the son of Yehiel Luria is known as  Maharshal or Rashal.  He was a Rabbi and author; born in Brest-Litovsk, Lithuania, in 1510.  He died in Lublin in 1573. When he was still a youth his parents sent him to Posen, where … Continue reading Sefer Shalos uTshuvos (Responsa) of Rabbi Solomon Luria, Furth 1768 – from Jews College London.

What did Dayan Hillman Read? Kereisi Upleisi and Tiferes Yisroel by Rabbi Yonasan Eibeschutz, Warsaw, 1878.

These are two important Rabbinical works by Rabbi Yonasan Eibeschutz (1690-1764), bound in one volume, and printed in Warsaw in 1878.  Rabbi Eibeschutz was an important talmudist, kabbalist and author who was the Dayan (rabbinical judge) of the city of Prague and later Rabbi of the Three Communities of Altona, Hamburg and Wansbeck.  Kereisi Upleisi … Continue reading What did Dayan Hillman Read? Kereisi Upleisi and Tiferes Yisroel by Rabbi Yonasan Eibeschutz, Warsaw, 1878.

Form of Prayers for the Day of Atonement according to the custom of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews, David Levi, London 5551 (1791).

I have a set of these Machzorim (Festival Prayer Books), in near mint condition, but sadly with no bookplate or information about who owned them. The translation, into fine 18th century English, demonstrates the skill of the erudite scholar, David Levi. The prayer for King George the Third and the Royal family, below, is particularly … Continue reading Form of Prayers for the Day of Atonement according to the custom of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews, David Levi, London 5551 (1791).

Darke Moshe, by Rabbi Moses Isserles (The Rema), First Edition, Furth, 1760.

This is a book from my antique book collection.  Darke Moshe was written by the Rema, Rabbi Moses ben Israel Isserles, who was among the foremost halachic authorities. He is usually known for his glosses, called Mappah, on the Shulchan Aruch.  The Rema’s work made the Shulchan Aruch acceptable to the Ashkenazim. He established a … Continue reading Darke Moshe, by Rabbi Moses Isserles (The Rema), First Edition, Furth, 1760.

Sefer Nidchei Yisroel, by Rabbi Yisroel Meir Kagan, the “Chofetz Chaim”, First edition, Warsaw 1893.

This book is from my antique book collection.  It is the first edition of Nidchei Yisroel, printed in 1893 on poor quality paper, originally in paper wrappers, perhaps to keep the cost as low as possible.  The pages have browned and I have scanned them in black and white to make them clearer. Rabbi Yisrael … Continue reading Sefer Nidchei Yisroel, by Rabbi Yisroel Meir Kagan, the “Chofetz Chaim”, First edition, Warsaw 1893.