Winner's Auctions No. 111

Important Historic Documents, Haskalah, Einstein, Seforim, Manuscripts and Letters from Rabbis and Rebbes

December 11, 2018
Opening $1,200
Estimate $3,000 - $4,000
Sold for $2,828
Including buyer's premium

Ma'aseh Beit Din regarding permission to remarry, granted to the agunah of a man named Feivel Beirech from Prague. Includes the collection of testimony and lengthy halachic clarification by the renowned Rabbi Michael Bachrach, adjudicator on the Beit Din of the gaon, the author of Noda B'Yehudah, in Prague, dubbed "Moreh-Shaveh." Not yet published!

Two large leaves, written on both sides, entirely in Rabbi Michael's handwriting. Including comments on the sheet, which he apparently added later. The end contains a copy of the testimony, as follows: "Taken place here in Prague, on the 28th of Shevat, 1795." He concludes the responsum: "It is necessary to make this leniency, especially since there are grounds for permission according to siman 26, so it seems to me in my humble opinion, if the prominent rabbis of the Beit Din Moreh-Shaveh would agree with me." The two adjudicators who stood by his side during this period were: Rabbi Yaakov Ginzberg, author of Zera Yaakov and Rabbi Eliezer Fleckles, author of Teshuvah MeAhavah.

Rabbi Michael Bachrach was born to Rabbi Shmuel Zanvil, descendant of the Chavat Yair, in 1730. He left behind many writings that are still unpublished. From his youth he was in a position religious leadership in Prague, and later became a member of the great Beit Din, together with the Noda B'Yehudah and Rabbi Yaakov Ginzburg. Numerous rulings and agreements are signed by the trio as the city's Beit Din. After the Noda B'Yehudah's passing in 1793, Rabbi Zalman Amrich served as Av Beit Din, but Rabbi Michael usually filled his place. After Rabbi Zalman's passing in 1794, Rabbi Michael was elected Av Beit Din, and served in this high position until his passing in 1801. Therefore, this responsum was given after the passing of his two predecessors, the Noda B'Yehudah and Rabbi Zalman.

Rabbi Michael was highly esteemed by the Noda B'Yehudah. The beginning of Sefer Tzla"ch on Tractate Beitzah contains a passage from Rabbi Michael's teachings, upon which the Noda B'Yehudah's son wrote, following his father's passing: "Since I know how beloved the gaon Rabbi Michael's words were to my father ztz"l, I therefore print them at the beginning of the book." Rabbi Michael was among the most proficient experts in the laws of agunahs, as became clear in his book, Arugat HaBosem, on Shulchan Aruch Even HaEzer, siman 17. In the book, the author goes to remarkable length to cover all the halachahs pertaining to the issue, with great knowledge and acumen. This responsum has not yet been printed.

The responsum also includes interesting reference to details about the husband who was killed, as he was a resident of Prague.

[8] large pages. Ink on paper. 39x24 cm. Clear Ashkenazi hand.

Moderate condition. Slight tears at leaves' edges with slight damage to text.

Compositions, Manuscripts and Glosses from Ashkenazic Rabbinical Leaders