Auction 96 Early Printed Books, Chassidut and Kabbalah, Books Printed in Jerusalem, Letters and Manuscripts
By Kedem
Apr 9, 2024
8 Ramban St, Jerusalem., Israel

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LOT 13:

Manuscript Responsum of Rabbi Yishmael HaKohen of Modena, Author of Zera Emet, Regarding Grafted Etrogim – ...

Sold for: $1,000
Start price:
$ 400
Buyer's Premium: 25%
VAT: 17% On commission only
09/04/2024 at Kedem

Manuscript Responsum of Rabbi Yishmael HaKohen of Modena, Author of Zera Emet, Regarding Grafted Etrogim – Unpublished – Italy, 1793

Manuscript leaf, halachic responsum regarding grafted etrogim, handwritten by R. Yishmael HaKohen of Modena, author of Zera Emet. [Italy], 1793.
Autograph, with deletions, corrections and additions between lines. The top of the manuscript reads: "Dalla villeggiat.a 2 agosto 5553" ["from vacation, August 2, 1793"]. The first lines are also written in Italian (with an apology for the delayed reply due to his vacation), after which he commences to write in Hebrew. He goes on to mention a lengthy halachic ruling he had written elsewhere [apparently referring to the 1792 responsum printed in Responsa Zera Emet, III, 73], and offers to send a copy upon his return from vacation.
At the end of the letter he discusses another halachic topic, absorption of forbidden foods in vessels, and refers to another yet-unpublished responsum of his (Zera Emet, Yoreh Deah 39).
At the top and bottom of the leaf appears the inscription "copied". To the best of our knowledge, this responsum has never been published.

R. Yishmael HaKohen, Rabbi of Modena (1724-1810), leading Italian rabbi and prominent posek. In 1782, he succeeded his brother R. David HaKohen as Rabbi of Modena, effectively leading all of Italian Jewry.

When the Jewish Sanhedrin was instituted by Napoleon in 1806, he wrote a detailed response to 12 questions asked by Napoleon about the relation between state law and Jewish law, which served as the basis for the rabbis representing Italian regions in the Sanhedrin.

[1] leaf. 20 cm. Good condition. Stains. Folding marks.