Auction 78 Rare and Important Items
May 25, 2021
 8 Ramban St, Jerusalem.
The preview and the auction will be held at our offices in accordance with the instructions of the Ministry of Health, 8 Ramban St. Jerusalem
The auction has ended

LOT 10:

Miniature Siddur – Amsterdam, 1739 – Fine Copy, with Original, Decorated Vellum Binding – Siddur Belonging to a ...

  Previous item
Next item 
Sold for: $4,000
Start price:
$ 3,500
Estimated price:
Auction house commission: 25%
VAT: 17% On commission only
Users from foreign countries may be exempted from tax payments, according to the relevant tax regulations

Miniature Siddur – Amsterdam, 1739 – Fine Copy, with Original, Decorated Vellum Binding – Siddur Belonging to a Jewish Russian Officer Killed in the Crimean War
Year-round siddur, following the Sephardi rite – siddur for weekdays, Shabbat and festivals. Amsterdam: Naftali Hertz Levi, [1739].
Miniature siddur. Fine copy, with original, decorated vellum binding. The siddur belonged to a Jewish Russian officer killed in the Crimean War (see below).
The first title page states that the book was printed "on commission of the brothers… sons of R. Meir Crescas", "in the press of the wealthy… Naftali Hertz Levi". On its verso, an introduction by R. Meir Crescas: "I saw in Amsterdam a miniature siddur, in tiny non-vocalized type, which the boys had difficulty reading, and I felt their anguish. I [therefore] printed this siddur… like no other, in small, thin type, with new, beautiful vocalization marks".
Separate title page on leaf 223: "Prayers for Festivals – Sephardi rite".
The front endpaper bears a handwritten inscription (in English): "Found in the possession of a Jewish Russian officer in the Crimea, who was killed at the Battle of Alma – Presented to the Rev. Dr. Adler by Dr. Karl Lehfeldt".
The Battle of the Alma took place on 20th September 1854, as part of the Crimean war fought in the mid-19th century between the Russian Empire and an alliance made up of the Ottoman Empire, the British Empire, the French Empire and Sardinia.
As stated in the inscription, the siddur, which first belonged to a Jewish Russian officer killed at that battle, was gifted to R. Natan Marcus Adler – chief rabbi of the British Empire, by his brother-in-law Dr. Karl Lehfeldt of Berlin (reputedly, for 50 years he was the only doctor in Berlin who refused to drive on Shabbat, unless in cases of life and death). Stamp of "J.J. Krimke – Stiftsrabbiner – Hannover" on p. 222b, the blank page before the second title page.
318 leaves. Approx. 6 cm. Good condition. Minor stains. Several inscriptions. Fine, original vellum binding. Gilt edges. Placed in a (new) slipcase.
Several variants of this edition are listed in the Bibliography of the Hebrew Book.
Provenance: Valmadonna Trust Library.

  Previous item
Next item