Auction 78 Rare and Important Items
May 25, 2021
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LOT 48:

Or HaMeir, Two Editions – First Edition – Korets, 1798 / Second Edition – Korets, After 1798

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Or HaMeir, Two Editions – First Edition – Korets, 1798 / Second Edition – Korets, After 1798
Or HaMeir, Chassidic and kabbalistic homiletics and allusions on the Torah, the Megillot and Festivals, by Rebbe Ze'ev Wolf of Zhitomir – two editions:
1. Or HaMeir. Korets, [1798]. First edition.
Stamps of R. "Ze'ev Wolf son of R. Moshe Dov Lerner Segal" (a Chassid of Sadigura in Kishinev, published the book Gevurot Aryeh by R. Aryeh Leib Rabbi of Lantzut and Kishinev).
[2], 58, 61-80, [2]; 52, 55-98, 101-120; 64 leaves. 19.5 cm. Bluish paper. Most leaves in good condition. Stains. Tears to first two leaves, including open tears to title page, affecting border and text on verso, with loss, repaired with paper and photocopy replacement. Open tear to leaf 77, affecting text, repaired with paper and photocopy replacement. Minor worming. Margins trimmed, with slight damage to text at foot of several leaves. New leather binding.
2. Or HaMeir. Korets, [after 1798]. Second edition.
[1], 4, [1], 5-260 leaves. Leaf of approbations bound out of sequence, after leaf 4. 18.5 cm. Bluish paper. Good condition. Stains. Margins trimmed with damage to leaf headings in several places. Strips of paper for reinforcement to several leaves. Worming to several leaves. Inscriptions. New binding.
Or HaMeir is one of the first Chassidic books, and contains teachings of the Baal Shem Tov. The author, R. Ze'ev Wolf of Zhitomir was one of the foremost disciples of the Maggid of Mezeritch, and a close disciple of R. Yaakov Yosef of Polonne, R. Nachum of Chernobyl and R. Levi Yitzchak of Berditchev. He was also close to R. Pinchas of Korets, who once said that he saw how R. Ze'ev Wolf was accompanied by Eliyahu the Prophet, who revealed to him holy secrets. R. Leib Sarah's said that he "saw upon his face the complete Image of G-d". The title page of the book bears exceptional praises about the author, such as: "He cleaved to his Creator at all times, unseparated while walking or sitting…". This book was dictated to his disciple R. Eliezer of Zhitomir, author of Pirkei HaNe'ezar. Rebbe Yisrael of Ruzhin remarked that "each Jew is obligated to conduct himself according to all that is written in the book". Rebbe Yissachar Dov of Belz is reputed as saying that R. Ze'ev Wolf delivered only one eighth of the Torah he received from Heaven, and of what he delivered only one eighth was heard; from that which was heard only one eighth was understood; from that which the author of Pirkei HaNe'ezar comprehended he wrote only one eighth, and from that which was printed only one eighth is understood. R. Ze'ev Wolf passed away in 1798 and this book was printed shortly after his passing.
In 1798-1810, the book was printed in several similar editions, including several variants. See A. Tauber, Mechkarim Bibliographi'im, pp. 36-39; Y. Yudlov, Ginzei Yisrael no. 1140. The title pages of both copies in this lot state 1798, yet there are several differences between the copies, including a difference in the approbations: the prohibition against reprinting this work was extended from fifteen years (in first edition) to twenty years (second edition). The exact year of printing of the second edition is not known, and it may have been printed shortly after the first edition.
Stefansky Chassidut, nos. 24, 25.

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