Auction No. 098

Holy books, Manuscripts, Rabbinical & Admors letters, Americana & Judiaca

March 27, 2017
Opening $ 1,500
Estimate $ 1,800 - $ 2,200
Sold for $ 1,830
Including buyer's premium

An enormous emissary letter (shtar shadarut). Rabbi Elimelech Perlman, from the congregation of Austria and Galicia in Jerusalem, 1874. A large and impressive historical document. 

Specifications: [1] double leaf, 38x54 cm. Signatures of the representatives of the kollel and the kollel's stamp. 

Unique Features: Large and impressive. Written in scribal handwriting, on behalf of the kollel of natives of Austria and of Galicia, to the Rabbis and sages of Austria. The document describes the great suffering of the members of the kollel in Jerusalem: "We do not have a study hall to learn Torah in, not a synagogue to pray in, nor a house to host guests in, nor a house for visiting the sick, not a bathhouse or house for immersion, nor any other communal necessities, and we are exiled and wandering...scattered like a rejected lamb, and our souls are exhausted from this bitter exile". In the letter, the people of Jerusalem plead for the people of Austria to come to their aid, and to help them to establish the community and its essential institutions. They also mention the great merit of one who prays at the Western Wall, and who lives in Jerusalem and toils there in matters of the World to Come, on which the world stands.

Background: Rabbi Elimelech Perlman was born to his father Rabbi Yisrael Isser Perlman, a disciple of the 'Chozeh of Lublin', who served as the Rabbi of Rozwadów until around the year 1850. After his death, his wife Esther [whose first husband was the Rebbe Rabbi Shlomo Leib of Łęczna] immigrated to Israel with their young son Elimelech, to her father Rabbi Asher Kahana-Shapira, Av Beit Din of Żołynia. Rabbi Elimelech was among the founders of the Kollel Österreich, which later became Kollel Galicia. He loyally served the immigrants from Galicia until his final day. In addition to managing the Kollel, he was was also one of the heads of the Va'ad HaKlali and one of the city's important activists.

The first signatory on the contract is Rabbi Yisrael Yehuda son of Moharash of Krasnov [?]. This [apparently] is Rabbi Yisrael Yehuda Leib Buchner, son of the Rebbe Rabbi Shlomo of Krasnov. He was the primary disciple of Rabbi Shmuel Shmelke of Nikolsburg, and later of Rabbi Elimelech of Lizhensk [refer to: Alfasi 3, 598]. Rabbi Yisrael Yehuda immigrated to Israel and was active in the city's spiritual life.  He died in 1886 and was buried on the Mount of Olives. Refer to: M. Wunder, Chachmei Galicia 1 446, and 188-189.

Condition: Folding marks, very fine condition.               

Manuscripts from Ashkennaz