Page 53 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 27

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B rism an —Jew is h C o l l e c t i o n a t
UCLA
47
in the Special Collections Department. It consists of 1,500 titles,
1,300 of which were purchased from a Dutch book dealer
in 1950. It comprised the entire library of the late Professor Abra­
ham Wolf, of the University College in London. A recognized
Spinoza authority, Wolf devoted forty-five years of his life to ac­
cumulate these books. This collection was significant in that
it contained not only works on and by Spinoza, but also a partial
reconstruction of Spinoza’s private library based on the inventory
of Servaas van Rooyen. It was considered to be “the largest pri­
vate library about the life and work of Baruch de Spinoza.”5 In
1964 the Library joined the Public Law 480 program, enabling
it to receive a large number of current publications from Israel.
The Library has also entered into a blanket order agreement
with a book dealer to procure all the important English Judaica
published in the United States, and books in Hebrew and Yiddish
published throughout the world excepting Israel. British and
Western European publications in Jewish studies are received
through other blanket order arrangements.
It was recently estimated that by the end of 1968 there were
more than 80,000 printed volumes of Hebraica and Judaica on
UCLA’s campus. Of these, 45,000 are in Hebrew, 5,000 in Yid­
dish, and the remainder in English, German, and in more than a
dozen other languages.
In addition to the printed works, the Library also acquired
three collections of Hebrew manuscripts dating from the four­
teenth to the nineteenth centuries. The first collection was ac­
quired in 1962 from the family of the late Rabbi Dr. Hayyim
Rosenberg of Ancona, Italy. It consisted of Bible commentaries,
rabbinica, cabalistic and liturgical codexes, and also historical
documents dealing with the Jewish communities of Italy. A
number of the manuscripts came from the inheritance of the
Hida, and carry his signature. Another group of manuscripts ac­
crued to the Library as part of the Cummings Collection. It
included, among others, manuscripts that originally belonged to
Dr. Moses Gaster and to other well-known Jewish scholars. The
third group, purchased in 1965, contains a fine selection of his­
torical documents and works of a controversial nature. Alto­
gether, the Library now possesses close to six hundred Hebrew
manuscripts.
5From introduction to Menno Hertzberger’s Catalogue No. 150. Spinoza.