Original Cloth. 4to. XXXVI, 248 pages. 32 cm. First edition. Fascimile reprint of Tractate 'Abodah Zarah of the Babylonian Talmud: Manuscript: Jewish Theological Seminary of America. "Only a handful of complete manuscript copies of individual talmudic tractates have survived the vicissitudes of Jewish life in the Middle Ages. This manuscript of Avodah Zarah from Ubeda, in southern Spain, is the oldest extant copy of this tractate and among the oldest complete Talmud tractates in the world. As with most Hebrew manuscripts, this text was copied by an individual for personal use. A colophon at the end of the tractate informs us that it was completed in the year 1290 in Ubeda, Spain by Shelomo ben Shaul ben-Albagli. This may be the same Shelomo ben-Albagli mentioned in the responsa of Rabbenu Asher. According to the text, Albagli copied this manuscript from two earlier manuscripts, one of which was written in the year 807 c. E. , directly linking this volume to the geonic tradition of Babylonia and the very earliest examples of written texts of the Talmud. The importance of this particular manuscript is further magni? Ed by its Spanish origin. Manuscripts from the Iberian Peninsula have long been deemed textually superior to their Italian and northern European counterparts. The recensions of the talmudic text found in these Spanish manuscripts are believed to more accurately re? Ect the Talmud as it was expounded in the Babylonian academies. The tradition of the superiority of Spanish manuscripts is lengthy and may be traced back to the time of Natronai ben Óavivai in the eighth century. Following a bitter dispute in 771 c. E. And the appointment of a rival exilarch (leader of the Babylonian Jewish community) , Natronai departed Babylonia for Spain, where it is claimed that he wrote the entire Talmud from memory, exactly as it had been recorded in Babylonia. The story of Natronai ben Óavivai is sometimes con? Ated with a legend told of Natronai ben Hilai of the following century, who is reputed to have used mystical means to instantaneously transport himself from Babylonia to Spain to teach the Spanish Jews the correct talmudic texts and then, just as mysteriously, return. By the end of the tenth century, Spanish Jews had gone beyond merely claiming a link to the Babylonian academies; they in fact supplanted them. The legend of the 'Four Captives, ' told in Abraham ibn Daud’s Sefer ha-Kabbalah, tells of how, around the year 990 c. E. , four great Babylonian rabbis formed new seats of learning in Spain and North Africa. Ibn Daud presumably wanted to demonstrate the historical fact of the disintegration of the spiritual center in Babylonia, its gradual removal to Spain from the beginning of the tenth century, and the end of the dependence of the Spanish rabbis on Babylonia. The tractate Avodah Zarah deals primarily with issues of idolatry. With language that hearkened back to a time when most non-Jews were idolaters, the tractate often suffered censorship and expurgation and often necessitated the issuance of apologetic declarations to the effect that the statements in the tractate were directed only against the nations of antiquity. " (Printing the Talmud; pg. 184) Subjects: Talmud – Avodah Zarah – Commentaries. Fascimile. Light soiling to cloth, otherwise clean and fresh. Very good condition. (RAB-55-2) Xx. Bookseller Inventory #
Title: MASEKHET 'AVODAH ZARAH: KETAV YAD BET ...
Publisher: Nyu York; Bet Ha-Midrash Le-Rabanim
Publication Date: 1957
Book Description Jewish Theological Seminary of America, New York, 1957. Hardbound. Book Condition: Good. Large quarto, lightly soiled orange cloth with gold lettering, xxxvi, 132, 133-252 pp., pages 1-132 are a facsimile of the manuscript, one page English language foreword at the rear, ink-stamps In Hebrew with the original manuscript in Aramaic. Bookseller Inventory # 56553