19 19 MOSES BEN MAIMON (MAIMONIDES / RaMBa”M). Mishnah Torah [Rabbinic Code]. Manuscript in Hebrew, written in a square Yemenite hand, on paper; corners rounded in the Yemenite style. ff. (251). Browned, several leaves frayed or worn, final leaf crudely repaired, textual damage to upper inner portion from f. 250 to end likely due to rodentia. Later sheep, rubbed. Sm. folio. Yemen, 14th century. $50,000 - $70,000 ❧ AN EARLY YEMENITE MANUSCRIPT OF THE MISHNAH TORAH. The volume contains: Sepher Zemanim: Kiddush Hachodesh 18:15 – Ta’anith 2:16 (ff. 1a-6b); Sepher Mishpatim: Nachaloth 1:7-6:3 (ff. 7a-12b); Sepher Kinyan: Complete from Mechirah 5:2 (ff. 13a-174a); Sepher Shoftim: Complete until Eiduth chap. 19 (ff. 175b-251b). Document of Harsha’ah (Permission) and the beginning of a Ketubah appear on f. 174b. Beneath, appears the signature of a former owner: Sholom ibn Sa’adiah HaLevi. Several leaves are of a later hand seeking to complete the text (e.g. ff. 175, 181, etc). Although a number of other medieval Yemenite Mishnah Torah manuscripts are extant, all are of great important in order to substantiate the most correct version of Maimonides’ original text. For the significance of early Yemenite manuscripts in this regard, see introduction to the Shabthai Frankel Ramba’m edition. The close connection of the Yemenite community to Maimonides may be traced back to Maimonides’ Igereth Teiman (Epistle to Yemen) a response to the pseudo-messianic movement in Yemen. Unique among Jewish communities, Yemenite Jews fully adopted Maimonides’ halachic rulings. Such was Yemenite Jewry’s fondness for Maimonides, they inserted into the Kaddish prayer the formula, “may the Messiah come speedily in our lifetime and in the lifetime of our teacher Rabbi Moses ben Maimon.” See EJ, Vol. X, cols. 670-72.