18 18 MELAMED, MEIR BEN SHEM TOV. Mishpat Tzedek [responsa]. Manuscript in Hebrew, written in a neat cursive Italian hand on paper. With signatures by members of the Morpurgo family. ff. (228, few pages blank). Few leaves extended and neatly folded back. Contemporary vellum. Folio. (Italy), 18th century. $10,000 - $15,000 ❧ A very neat copy of an important collection of responsa containing variants to the printed edition. This manuscript corresponds to the third volume of the first edition: Salonika 1795 (the first two volumes appeared earlier in 1615- 16). The first responsa in the printed edition is incomplete, lacking the question and the beginning of the response. The editor makes note of this and attempts to recreate the subject matter. THE PRESENT MANUSCRIPT CONTAINS THE COMPLETE RESPONSA (which fills almost the entire folio page) thus shedding light on the continuation. We can therefore deduce that this manuscript, with additional variants, was not the source of the published version, but is indeed a superior text. R. Meir Melamed (16th-17th century) was one of the leading Sephardic Halachists of his time who corresponded with such great authorities as Maharsha’ch (R. Shlomo Cohen), Maharcha’sh (R. Chaim Shabthai), R. Shmuel Hiyun and others. It is assumed that R. Meir was a disciple of R. Yoseph ibn Ezra (author of Atzmoth Yoseph) as he consents to a ruling of R. Meir (see Mishpat Tzedek vol. II, responsa 31; and see Shem Hagedolim, under R. Meir Melamed). However see Spiegel (introduction to Shu’t R. Yoseph ibn Ezr (Yad Harav Nissim, 1989) n. 11) who disputes this notion. NO OTHER MANUSCRIPT OF THE RESPONSA OF R. MEIR MELAMED ARE EXTANT.