Auction 75 Rare and Important Items
Nov 24, 2020
 8 Ramban St, Jerusalem.
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LOT 1:

Babylonian Talmud – Sulzbach, 1755-1763 – Complete, Elegant Set – Original Wood and Leather Bindings, With Metal Clasps

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Babylonian Talmud – Sulzbach, 1755-1763 – Complete, Elegant Set – Original Wood and Leather Bindings, With Metal Clasps
Babylonian Talmud, with commentaries. Sulzbach: Meshulam Zalman son of Aharon (Fränkel), [1755-1763]. Complete elegant set in fifteen volumes.
This edition was the focus of a dispute between printers which engendered a controversy between rabbis. Shortly after the beginning of printing, the Proops brothers of Amsterdam appealed to the rabbis of Vaad Arba Aratzot with the contention that the printing of the Sulzbach edition was a violation of their printing rights. The printers in Amsterdam were then in the midst of publishing their own Talmud edition, and had received rabbinic approbations granting them exclusive rights to print the Talmud for a period of twenty-five years. The Vaad Arba Aratzot and other rabbis hastened to ban the Sulzbach Talmud. They prohibited studying from that edition of the Talmud and ruled that the volumes should be burnt (!) or at least buried. The dispute persisted however as the rabbis of Fürth, led by R. David Strauss, backed R. Zalman, the printer from Sulzbach. During the course of the conflict, both sides published polemic booklets against each other. The dispute continued for a long while and eventually drew the attention of leading rabbis of that time, such as the Noda BiYehuda who intervened to mediate between the printers (see: R. Refael Natan Nata Rabinowitz, Maamar al Hadpasat HaTalmud, Jerusalem 1952, pp. 119-121; R. Yosef Wichelder, HaDfus VehaPulmus, HaMevaser HaTorani, issue 243 – 26th Av 2013, and issue 245 – 10th Elul 2013).
In Responsa Zichron Yosef (Choshen Mishpat, section 2) by R. Yosef Steinhart Rabbi of Fürth, a leading Torah scholar of that generation, an exchange of letters between himself, R. Shaul Rabbi of Amsterdam and another rabbi is printed, comprising a detailed discussion of the halachic status of the Talmud volumes of the Sulzbach edition. They question whether there is an obligation to burn the volumes, in light of the ban issued by the rabbis of the Vaad Arba Aratzot, or whether it is preferable to bury them. They also suggest that the prohibition may apply only to volumes in possession of the printer and not to volumes which have already been purchased by private individuals. R. Yosef Steinhart rules in his responsum: "In my humble opinion, the matter is clear as day… it is permissible to study from the Talmud printed in Sulzbach, even though the printing was banned…".
Title pages of some tractates (Berachot, Shabbat, Pesachim, Rosh Hashanah, Yevamot, Gittin, Bava Kama, Bava Batra, Sanhedrin, Zevachim, Chullin, Niddah) printed in red and black. All the title pages bear the printer's device with the inscription: "Zalman Madpis".
Many ownership inscriptions, including several by R. Chaim Feivel son of R. Eliezer Leizer, his son R. Refael and his grandson R. Lipman, of Niederhagenthal (Hagenthal-le-Bas, Alsace). Some inscriptions are dated to the late 18th century. Inscriptions by members of the Blum family of Bischheim; "Eliezer Horodi"; and others.
15 volumes. Complete set. • Berachot and Order Zera'im, 1755: [3], 2-100; 87 leaves. • Shabbat, Beitzah, 1755: [3], 2-190; 51 leaves. • Eruvin, Chagigah, Taanit, Shekalim, 1756-1757: 117, 119-130; 28; 36; 13 leaves. • Pesachim, Moed Katan, Megillah, 1756-1757: 121, 121-137; 44; 39 leaves. • Rosh Hashanah, Yoma, Sukkah, 1757: 41; 95; 68 leaves. • Yevamot, Ketubot 1757-1758: 147; [2], 2-145, 150-153 leaves. • Nedarim, Nazir, Sotah, 1760: 106; 69; 52 leaves. • Gittin, Kiddushin, 1757-1760: 116; 97 leaves. • Bava Kama, Bava Metzia, 1760: 146; 158, [1] leaves. • Bava Batra, Avoda Zara, 1763: 219; 97 leaves. Tractate Avoda Zara printed without title page. • Sanhedrin, Avot DeRabbi Natan, Sofrim, Semachot, Kallah, Derech Eretz Rabba and Zuta, Avot with Shemonah Perakim by the Rambam and the Chesed Avraham commentary, Halachot Ketanot by Rabbenu Asher, Shevuot, Eduyot, Horayot and Makkot, 1761: 129; 33; [37]-52; 61; 14; 18; 28 leaves. • Zevachim, Menachot, 1761-1762: [2], 2-121, 121-126; 114, 114-115, [1] leaves. • Chullin, Keritot, 1762: 177, 31 leaves. • Bechorot, Temurah, Me'ilah, Kinnim, Tamid, Middot, Arachin, 1762: 73; 36; 36, [1], 37-42, [1]; 36, [1] leaves. • Niddah and Order Taharot, 1758-1759: 88; 178 leaves.
Approx. 39 cm. Wide margins. Light-colored, thick, high-quality paper in some volumes. Overall good condition. Stains, including large stains in several places. Minor marginal wear to several leaves. Tears to several leaves, repaired in part. Tears to title page of tractate Shabbat, slightly affecting text, repaired. Some minor worming. Handwritten inscriptions. Original leather-covered wood bindings, with metal clasps. Damage to bindings and minor worming in a few places. Bindings restored; straps and parts of binding replaced in some volumes. One volume with new endpapers.

Tractate Middot includes three pages with plans and illustrations of the Temple and the Temple vessels. Name of the artist (noted on one page): Yehonatan son of R. Yosef of Rozhinoy (after the Frankfurt edition).
For a detailed description of this edition, see: R. N.N. Rabinowitz, Maamar al HaDpasat HaTalmud, Jerusalem 1952, pp. 120-121.

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