AUCTION 61 | Wednesday, March 12th, 2014 at 1:00
Fine Judaica: Printed Books, Manuscripts, Autograph Letters, Graphic Art and Ceremonial Objects

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Lot 96


Sa’adyah ben Joseph. HaPeduth VehaPurkan [treatise regarding the Redemption]. * Maimonides, Moses. Igereth Teiman [epistle to Yemen]. * Maimonides, Moses. Maamar Techiyath HaMeithim [on the Ressurrection of the Dead]. * Emden, Jacob. Maaseh Nora BePodolia [”An Awful Event in Podolia”] ff. 30. Browned. Later boards. 12mo. Vinograd, Altona 94 (incorrectly gives title as “HaGaluth VehaPeduth”).

Altona: (Jacob Emden) 1759

Est: $4,000 - $5,000
The indefatigable foe of false Messiahs, Rabbi Jacob Emden, writes in the preface here that he is publishing the works of Sa’adyah Gaon and Maimonides concerning the long-awaited arrival of the true Messiah to strengthen belief in a generation that has been spiritually devastated due to the manifestation of the pseudo-Messiah Shabbetai Tzvi and his many followers. Historically, Emden’s Maaseh Nora BePodolia, a report of the events leading up to the infamous disputation between the rabbis and the Frankists (“counter-Talmudists”) in the cathedral of Lvov in 1759, is invaluable. The report begins with an alleged orgy that took place in the community of Sharogrod, Podolia, continues with the burning of the Talmud in Kaminetz by order of the bishop of that city, Dembowski, immediately followed by the miraculous death of the bishop as heavenly retribution, and ends with the disputation at Lvov. According to Emden’s informant, “R. Israel Mezhbiz B[aal] Sh[em]” was one of three disputants (together with R. Haim Rapaport of Lvov and R. Ber of Yazlowitz) representing Polish Jewry. The Frankists were represented by Jacob Frank, Leib Krisa and Elisha [Shor] of Rohatyn. (Ma’aseh Nora, f. 29v.) Jacob Frank claimed to his devotees that he was the reincarnation of Berechiah of Salonika, who in turn was believed by the Sabbatians to be the reincarnation of Shabbetai Tzvi himself. In Emden’s narration of these events, it was through sorcery that Frank ensnared unsuspecting souls to believe in an antinomian and orgiastic Sabbatianism. Maaseh Nora BePodolia is a sequel to Emden’s earlier report of Frankists’ intrigues, Sepher Shimush (1758). See EJ, Vol. VII, cols. 55-65.