Wednesday, September 21, 2005

New Auction Catalog Online

The Baranovitch auction catalog for their Nov. 9th auction is now available online. It has some nice seforim, including one of my favorite, R. Y. Shapotshink's Shas haGodol s'begolim, the largest Shas ever published. Shapotshink, who was a real character, utilized R. Pinner's shas and then added notes on the side of the page, creating the largest in size shas ever published. As many of his books, he only published a single volume. In this case, only Berachot was published.

The auction also includes some books with pictures in them. One of the more interesting ones is the Vienna, 1813 edition of the Marsha (R. Shmuel Edels) that contains his "portrait." R. Edels lived 1555-1631 and there is no known portrait executed during his lifetime. The portrait that appears in the Vienna edition is a product of the artist imagination and probably bears no relationship to what R. Edels actually looked like. In the portrait the Mahrsha appears with long, shoulder length hair, wearing some type of slippers, surrounded by hundreds of books.

At the same time, the Vienna publishers also published an edition of the Rif (R. Yitzhak Alfasi) also with a portrait, which is also a product of the artists imagination.

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