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Posts Tagged ‘Dalman-Christie’

Festival Prayers for Hanukkah

Shaar Bat Rabim Mahzor Helek Rishon : ke-minhag kahal kadosh Ashkenazim. Ṿinitsiʾah : Stamperia Bragadina, 1716-[1731/32. New College Library Dal-Chr 9(1)

Shaar Bat Rabim Mahzor Helek Rishon : ke-minhag kahal kadosh Ashkenazim. Ṿinitsiʾah : Stamperia Bragadina, 1716-[1731/32. New College Library Dal-Chr 9(1)

The Mahzor Ashkenazim  is an example of a mahzor, or festival prayer book, for Ashkenazi usage, published in Venice in the early eighteenth century. Its large size makes it likely that it was intended for synagogue use rather than personal prayer. The Encyclopedia Judaica (available online to University of Edinburgh users) notes that mahzorim, which originally developed  in medieval south western Germany, started to appear in the Ashkenazi communities of  northern Italy in the fifteenth century.

This item is part of the Dalman-Christie Collection,  catalogued as one of the Funk Cataloguing Projects at New College Library. The Dalman-Christie Collection was transferred to New College Library in 1946 from the Church of Scotland Hospice in Jerusalem. With thanks to our Hebrew Cataloguer, Janice Gailani, for helping to identify this item.

This opening shows festival prayers for Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of lights.

This opening shows festival prayers for Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of lights.

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Medieval Jewish Biblical Scholarship at New College Library

Perush ‘al Nevi’im ahronim = Commentarius celeberrimi Rabbi Ishak Abarbanel super Iesaiam, Ieremiam, Iehazkelem, et prophetas XII. minores (1642) New College Library Dal-Chr 36

This item from New College Library’s Special Collections is a biblical commentary on the Old Testament prophets by the Portuguese Jewish scholar Isaac Abravanel (1437-1508).   Abravanel was employed by King Alfonso V of Portugal as his Treasurer and his career encompassed statesmanship, philosophy and finance as well as biblical scholarship. In his commentaries he took time to include an introduction to each book, concerning its character and the intention of the original author. Much of his exegetical work was translated and distributed within the world of Christian scholarship, and this seventeenth century edition shows that Abravanel’s work was still in circulation nearly two hundred years after it was produced.

This book is part of the Dalman-Christie collection of Hebrew books, which was recently catalogued as part of the Funk Cataloguing Projects at New College Library –  thanks go to our Hebrew Cataloguer, Janice Gailani, for sharing details of this item.  The Dalman-Christie collection was transferred to New College Library in 1946 from the Church of Scotland Hospice in Jerusalem.

Historic record of Jewish festivals at New College Library

It’s September 16 and the beginning of Rosh Hashanah,  the Jewish New Year festival. Rosh Hashanah customs include sounding the shofar, or ram’s horn trumpet, and eating apples dipped in honey – a symbol of the wish for a sweet new year.

New College Library holds an interesting volume of  prayers and devotions for Ashkenazi Jewish festivals,  Maḥzor ḥeleḳ rishon, published c. 1699  in Sulzbach  in the Rhineland where medieval Jewish communities settled. The book still has some of its original brass studs and brass clasps intact.

This book is part of the Dalman-Christie collection of Hebrew books, which was recently catalogued as part of the Funk Cataloguing Projects at New College Library.  The Dalman-Christie Collection was transferred to New College Library in 1946 from the Church of Scotland Hospice in Jerusalem. With thanks to our Hebrew Cataloguer, Janice Gailani, for sharing details of this item.

Maḥzor ḥeleḳ rishon [1699] New College Library Dal-Chr 14