Winner's Auctions No. 111

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

December 11, 2018
Opening $ 8,000
Estimate $ 20,000 - $ 30,000
Sold for $ 31,256
Including buyer's premium

Small Torah scroll on parchment. Special scroll preserving ancient and rare traditions, written in Ashkenaz in the 17th century. Two sheets were completed in the 18th and 19th centuries.

Parchment width 12.5 cm. Column height 10.2 cm. 55 sheets in varying widths, 23.10 m total length. 32 lines per page. Pleasant Ashkenazic script. Wooden Torah handles.

The scroll before us contains very early and rare traditions. Aside from Shirat HaYam and Haazinu which were written in poetic form, tile and brick, there are other portions written in poetic form: The verses of the Children of Israel's journeys in the desert, written tile-on-tile and brick-on-brick. A similar sample is found in a French-Ashkenazic Torah scroll from the late 12th century (material attached) and since then, this tradition is unknown!

For example, there are verses which repeat in the making of the menorah: 'וכפתר תחת שני הקנים ממנה' which are written in poetic form, and the form of the writing of the verses with Yaakov's blessings to his sons is arranged in a special manner. Additionally, there are other verses with repeated words written in poetic form, such as the portion discussing forbidden relationships in Vayikra, and the verses of curses in Devarim.

In the scroll, there are verses with unusual letters - letters which are looped and bent, an ancient tradition discussed, inter alia, by the Ramba"m, but not preserved in our days.

As such, the upside-down נ' in the 'ויהי בנסוע הארון' portion are written in a unique manner. This form is brought by the Maharsha"l who saw a precise Torah scroll written by Rabbi Todros HaZaken of Shapira. There were those who thought that it was an error, but this scroll, also written in Ashkenaz, it is also written in this fashion.

The letter-points [תגים] written on the letters שעטנ"ז ג"ץ were written in a special way, and there are verses where the letter-points are decorated with three decorations, like a bouquet.

A detailed opinion by Rabbi Shlomo Zucker, expert on Hebrew manuscripts, titled: 'Torah Scroll Written with a Special Structure, Preserving Ancient and Rare Traditions,' is included. A lengthy opinion, it concludes with the line, 'In summary, I have not seen another scroll with such a great concentration of remnants of rare traditions.'

Overall fine condition. In a number of places, there are repairs to the parchment and letters and connections of loose sheets. Very minimal ink smudges and faded ink.

Compositions, Manuscripts and Glosses from Ashkenazic Rabbinical Leaders