Rare Book Monthly

Articles - November - 2018 Issue

Important Jewish and Israeli Material Offered in sale at Kedem Auction House

The passsport of Rebbe Aharon Rokeach.

Kedem Auction House of Jerusalem is hosting a major sale of Jewish and Israeli material on November 13. You don't have to be present in Jerusalem to participate. Collectors all over the world may bid by internet and telephone if the distance is too great.

 

The auction is titled Rare and Important Items, divided into three main sections. There are books, manuscripts & rabbinical letters, Jewish & Israeli history and culture, and objects - Judaica, Israeliana & Numismatics. The Kedem website can be selected to be read in either Hebrew or English, so fluency in Hebrew is not a requirement, though naturally enough, many of the old and historical writings are in the language of the Bible.

 

Here is an example of an older, historic book that is being offered. Lot 72 is a prayer book for the High Holy Days (Machzor) that was used in the Ashkenazi community of Padua in the early 18th century. It belonged to Moshe Chaim Luzzatto, rabbi and kabbalist. He was known as the Ramchal. That is an acronym taken from his Hebrew name, a manner in which some of the great Jewish scholars were addressed. His copy of the Machzor is particularly notable as it contains many notations written in the margins by the Ramchal. He served as chazan (cantor) during the services.

 

Lot 108 is a passport issued to Rebbe Aharon Rokeach of Belz, with his picture and signature. The Rebbe didn't use it. He had miraculously escaped the Holocaust as his followers managed to move him around from one place to another from his home near the Polish border. It was necessary as he was a target of the Nazis. When he made it to Budapest in Hungary, the Nazis demanded his extradition. Instead, his supporters smuggled him south through Romania, Bulgaria, Greece, Turkey and Syria, before he finally made it to the Holy Land. His brother also made it, but sadly, the Rebbe's wife, children, grandchildren, and most of his extended family were killed by the Nazis. This passport comes from after the war. It was issued by the Polish consul in Israel in 1948. His followers back in Europe wanted him to return and he planned for the trip. It turned out the plane ticket was for the day of his mother's Yahrzeit (remembrance). He said he never traveled on the day of a Yahrzeit, and managed to find reasons for never rescheduling, but stayed in Israel instead.

 

Lot 145 consists of 18 handwritten documents from the Inquisition in Bologna during the 15th century. This inquisition involved heresy, but it was not on the level of what was done to the Jews during the Spanish Inquisition. Rather, it was mostly targeted at what were considered heretical Christian sects. One group of documents pertains to an investigation of the Musetti family, Abraham, his wife Bronella, and a family member named Decatilus, Jews from Bologna. They were claimed to have interfered with a Corpus Christi procession in 1445. It appears this may have been more of a personal dispute between family members and a couple of Christians. The papers likely belonged to the inquisitor.

 

There are many more historic and interesting books and documents to be found in this catalogue. Kedem Auction House may be found at the following link: www.kedem-auctions.com/.

 

The lots in this specific sale are found at www.kedem-auctions.com/sale/63/?show_items=all.

Rare Book Monthly

  • Sotheby’s
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    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Winston Churchill. The Second World War. Set of First-Edition Volumes. 6,000 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: A.A. Milne, Ernest H. Shepard. A Collection of The Pooh Books. Set of First-Editions. 18,600 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Salvador Dalí, Lewis Carroll. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Finely Bound and Signed Limited Edition. 15,000 USD
    Sotheby’s
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    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Ian Fleming. Live and Let Die. First Edition. 9,500 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: J.K. Rowling. Harry Potter Series. Finely Bound First Printing Set of Complete Series. 5,650 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Ernest Hemingway. A Farewell to Arms. First Edition, First Printing. 4,200 USD
  • Forum Auctions
    Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper
    30th May 2024
    Forum, May 30: Potter (Beatrix). Complete set of four original illustrations for the nursery rhyme, 'This pig went to market', 1890s. £60,000 to £80,000.
    Forum, May 30: Dante Alighieri.- Lactantius (Lucius Coelius Firmianus). Opera, second edition, Rome, 1468. £40,000 to £60,000.
    Forum, May 30: Distilling.- Brunschwig (Hieronymus). Liber de arte Distillandi de Compositis, first edition of the so-called 'Grosses Destillierbuch', Strassburg, 1512. £22,000 to £28,000.
    Forum, May 30: Eliot (T.S.), W. H. Auden, Ted Hughes, Philip Larkin, Robert Lowell, Seamus Heaney, Ted Hughes, & others. A Personal Anthology for Eric Walter White, 60 autograph poems. £20,000 to £30,000.
    Forum, May 30: Cornerstone of French Enlightenment Philosophy.- Helvetius (Claude Adrien). De l'Esprit, true first issue "A" of the suppressed first edition, Paris, 1758. £20,000 to £30,000.
    Forum Auctions
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    Forum, May 30: Szyk (Arthur). The Haggadah, one of 125 copies, this out-of-series, Beaconsfield Press, 1940. £15,000 to £20,000.
    Forum, May 30: Fleming (Ian). Casino Royale, first edition, first impression, 1953. £15,000 to £20,000.
    Forum, May 30: Japan.- Ryusui (Katsuma). Umi no Sachi [Wealth of the Sea], 2 vol., Tokyo, 1762. £8,000 to £12,000.
    Forum, May 30: Computing.- Operating and maintenance manual for the BINAC binary automatic computer built for Northrop Aircraft Corporation 1949, Philadelphia, 1949. £8,000 to £12,000.
    Forum, May 30: Burmese School (probably circa 1870s). Folding manuscript, or parabaik, from the Court Workshop at the Royal Court at Manadaly, Burma, [c.1870s]. £8,000 to £12,000.
  • Ketterer Rare Books
    Auction May 27th
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    K. Marx, Das Kapital,1867. Dedication copy. Est: € 120,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Latin and French Book of Hours, around 1380. Est: € 25,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
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    Ketterer Rare Books
    Auction May 27th
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Breviary, Latin manuscript, around 1450-75. Est: € 10,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    G. B. Piranesi, Vedute di Roma, 1748-69. Est: € 60,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
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    Ketterer Rare Books
    Auction May 27th
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Breviarium Romanum, Latin manuscript, 1474. Est: € 20,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    C. J. Trew, Plantae selectae, 1750-73. Est: € 28,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    M. Beckmann, Apokalypse, 1943. Est: € 50,000
    Ketterer Rare Books
    Auction May 27th
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Ulrich von Richenthal, Das Concilium, 1536. Est: € 9,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    I. Kant, Critik der reinen Vernunft, 1781. Est: €12,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Arbeiter-Illustrierte Zeitung (AIZ) / Die Volks-Illustrierte (VI), 1932-38. Est: €8,000

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