Page 192 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 44

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JEWISH BOOK ANNUAL
taries, novellae on Maimonides, sermons and eulogies, ethical
and mystical treatises, herbal medicine, and the contemporary
issue o f the blood libel; among these are some texts o f linguistic
interest written in rabbinicJudezmo. Also included in this special
collection are several works written or edited by his sons, them­
selves noted scholars, and by his ancestor, Moses al-Palas o f
Marrakesh and Tetuan. Nearly half o f the Palaggi volumes —
some extremely rare and fragile — have been carefully restored
by the National Library’s conservation services.
AUSTRO -HUNGAR IAN AND CZECH HEBRAICA
Every collector collects what is exotic or esoteric to himself. The
Lowy Collection is especially strong in southern and western
European Hebraica from Italy, the Iberian peninsula, France,
and the Balkans. Nevertheless, the collection also mirrors the
native Austro-Hungarian milieu o f the collector, central and east­
ern Europe, and the Subcarpathian region in particular. There
are numerous modern rabbinic and Hasidic works published in
the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In this category are
imprints from cities in Hungary, Slovakia and Romania, such as
Budapest, Ungvar, Sighet and Munkacs. Among the more inter­
esting items are the forged edition o f part o f the Jerusalem
Talmud (Seini, 1909), and the responsa entitled
Afarkasta de-Anya
(Szatmar, 1940), one o f the last Hebrew books published in this
Transylvanian town before the deportation o f Jews by the Nazis.
The CzechJewish cultural sphere is also well represented, most
importantly in choice examples o f Hebrew printing in Prague,
the first city o f Hebrew printing north o f the Alps, and in the
many editions o f works by Hebrew authors from Prague pub­
lished elsewhere in Europe. Among these are first or early edi­
tions o f the writings o f such Prague rabbis and scholars as the phi­
losopher and talmudist Judah Loew, the chronicler David Gans,
the codifier Mordecai Jaffe, the kabbalist and supposed Sab-
batean Jonathan Eybeschuetz, the rabbinic authorities Ezekiel
Landau and Eleazar Fleckeles, and the pioneer o f Jewish enlight­
enment, S.J. Rapoport. There are also various liturgies o f the Pol­
ish and Bohemian rites published in Prague, and more recent
imprints from Pressburg and elsewhere in Slovakia, including a
few books published in Mr. Lowy’s home town, Bardejov, earlier
in this century.