Documents: 2653, displayed: 2641 - 2653

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Heid. 125
Parchment · I + 142 + I ff. · 14.9-15 x 10.8-11.1 cm · Sepharad · 14th century
Siddur according to the Sephardic rite

This 14th century Sephardic Siddur for personal use is composed of the daily and sabbath prayers, as well as a text on the interpretation of dreams. Moreover, there are additions for the prayers of the new month and the festivals of Hanukkah, Purim and Pessah, the latter of which has been followed by the Haggadah, read at the Seder itself. However, the importance of this Siddur lies within the presence of some instructions on the structure of the Seder in Judeo-Spanish, or more precisely, medieval Castilian. (iss)

Online Since: 06/13/2019

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Heid. 134
Parchment · I + 94 + I ff. · 23-23.1 x 16.5 cm · Poland · 14th century
Mahzor according to the Ashkenazi rite

Beautifully illuminated Maḥzor for Rosh ha-Shanah and Yom Kippur according to the Ashkenazi rite. It is however possible to surmise that this manuscript was produced in Poland during the 14th century, as its script resembles that of contemporary Hebrew manuscript fragments of maḥzorim produced in Poland. This manuscript of middle-sized format, enclosing several ornate initial words and illuminated frames, contains the liturgy for the High Holidays of Rosh ha-Shana and Yom Kippur, including many liturgical poems (piyyutim) displayed in several columns, and was destined for public use by the precentor (ḥazan) at the synagogue. However, the particularity of this maḥzor lies in the presence of a woman’s name, גננא כהנת (Jeanne Kohenet), inserted within the painted letters of a decorated monumental initial word. She was probably the patron of this manuscript and either the daughter or wife of a cohen. The manuscript is incomplete at the beginning and at the end. (iss)

Online Since: 12/10/2020

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Heid. 136
Parchment · IV+ 152 +IV ff. · 9.8-10 x 7-7.6 cm · Italy · 2nd half 15th century
Siddur according to the Italian rite

This small format siddur for personal use can be characterized as a vademecum for Jewish religious and communal life. It is divided into three parts, relative to liturgy, Jewish ceremonies, and a last miscellaneous one. The latter includes, among other significant texts, a rare and intriguing list of the names of books and incipits of chapters of all 24 Books of the Bible, with the Hebrew and Latin names, spelled out in Hebrew characters. (iss)

Online Since: 06/13/2019

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Heid. 145
Paper · III + 189 + III ff. · 21.2-21.5 x 14.6-15 cm · Ashkenaz · 1341, 1348 and 2nd half 14th century
Liturgical-Halakhic compendium

This composite manuscript by three different scribes encloses two textual units which were bound together. The volume is structured by a liturgical section, according to the Ashkenazi rite and a halakhic section. The manuscript Heidenheim 145 is one of many compendia of its genre, consisting of an assortment of texts which reflect the religious and talmudo-centric orientation of the intellectual elite of medieval Franco-Germany. (iss)

Online Since: 12/12/2019

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Heid. 166
Paper · II + 46 + I ff. · 32.3 x 22.3 cm · Italy · 15th century
Averroes, Hebrew translation by Qalonymos ben Qalonymos of the Middle Commentary on Aristotle’s Physics

This almost complete Italian 15th century paper copy is composed of Books II to VIII of the Hebrew translation of Averroes’ Middle Commentary on the Physics by Aristotle. The learned Andalusian polymath, jurist and imam, Abu al-Walid Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn Rushd – or Averroes (1126-1198), known as the Commentator, devoted his entire life on restoring Aristotle’s original teachings, and writing commentaries on nearly all of Aristotle’s works. He was therefore considered one of the most influential philosophic authorities of the Middle Ages, not only among the Latin Scholastics, but particularly among Jews, for the understanding of Aristotelian science through the Hebrew translations of his commentaries. The Middle Commentary is the least known of Averroes’ commentaries on the Physics and exists today in two complete Hebrew translations from the Arabic and one partial 16th century Hebrew-to-Latin translation. The Hebrew translation found in Ms. Heid. 166 is that of the Provençal Jewish philosopher Qalonymos ben Qalonymos (1286-d. after 1328), entitled Bi᷾ ur ha-Shema’, and was the most widely copied version of the Hebrew translations. (iss)

Online Since: 12/10/2020

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Heid. 192 A-B
Paper · 128 ff. · 20.5-21 x 14.5 cm · Italy · 1642 and 1687 (Ms. Heid. 192A) and 16th century (Ms. Heid. 192B)
Customs of the Isaac b. Solomon Luria Ashkenazi; Miscellaneous collection of texts

This manuscript is divided into two separate textual units, which were both written by two different scribes in Italy during the 16th and 17th centuries. Ms. Heid. 192A is a small booklet, copied by one hand in 1642 and 1687, which consists of a collection of customs and anecdotes on Rabbi Isaac B. Solomon Luria Ashkenazi (Arizal, 1534-1572) and his entourage, as well as a mystical protective prayer to be recited in the morning and evening, followed by portions of biblical readings for the days of the week, and ending with a selection of penitential prayers (Seliḥot). Ms. Heid. 192B is a miscellaneous collection of biblical midrashim, prognostication literature, tales, Alphabeta de Ben Sira, Talmudic Aggadot. (iss)

Online Since: 12/10/2020

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Or. 157
Parchment · VI + 716 + VI pp. · 15 x 10.6-10.8 cm · Italy · 1322
Biblical and ethical miscellany

Illuminated biblical and ethical miscellany produced in Italy in 1322. This small format manuscript, with an exquisite 16th-century white leather binding blindstamped with the coat of arms of the city of Zurich, is divided into two groups of texts. The first section is made up of the biblical texts of the Five Megillot, accompanied by three commentaries on them, composed by the great medieval scholars, Solomon ben Isaac (Rashi), Avraham ibn Ezra and Joseph Qara. The second section is of ethical nature and consists in the Mishna tractate of the Pirqei Avot or Ethics of the Fathers and its commentaries. The first is an anonymous one ; the second is entitled Shemonah Peraqim by Maimonides, as translated by Samuel ibn Tibbon, and the third is a commentary by Rashi placed in the margins of the latter. In addition, this handbook is interspersed with aggadic, midrashic, mystical and philosophical material. (iss)

Online Since: 12/10/2020

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Or. 159
Parchment · I + 161 + III ff. · 10.3 x 7 cm · Ashkenaz · 1433
Book of Psalms (Sefer Tehilim)

This pocket format 15th century Hebrew Book of Psalms from Ashkenaz, is representative of private use hand copies, which are more seldom preserved in separate textual units rather than incorporated in the Hagiographs section of Hebrew bibles and liturgical manuscripts. Nonetheless, this genre of biblical literature is already attested in the Dead Sea Scrolls. Additionaly, Ms Or. 159 contains 149 Psalms, rather than the canonical 150, which is only one among many configurations found in early and late medieval Hebrew manuscripts, enclosing between 143 and 151 Psalms. Lastly, two medieval Hebrew manuscript fragments of an Esther Scroll have been reused as flyleaves for the 16th century leather tooled binding, protecting this little exquisite Book of Psalms. (iss)

Online Since: 06/13/2019

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Rh. 15
Parchment · 239 ff. · 33-33.5 x 22.5-23 cm · Zürich · ca. 1340/50
Rudolf von Ems, Weltchronik

This richly illustrated manuscript of Rudolf von Ems’ Chronicle of the world was written in the 1340s, probably in Zurich (in the same writing workshop as the 1346 book of statutes of the Zurich Grossmünster). Its iconographic program is closely related to that of the Chronicle of the World currently held in St. Gall (Vadian Collection Ms. 302). Ms. Rh. 15 came to Zurich in 1863 from the library of the dissolved Rheinau Abbey. (wal)

Online Since: 03/29/2019

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Rh. 167
Parchment · 199 ff. · 27.5 x 18.5 cm · Constance/area of Lake Constance · around 1260
Rheinau Psalter

The Rheinau Psalter, Ms. Rh. 167, is among the preeminent treasures of the Zurich Central Library. Its miniatures are a product of the highest level of artistry of the High Gothic painting of this period around 1260, which is also true for the sophisticated color and painting techniques that were used. In contrast, the script, while of quite good quality, cannot be counted among the highest examples of the art of writing. The commissioner of the manuscript must be sought in the area of Lake Constance, probably in the city of Constance, which was very important in the politics and church politics at the time of the interregnum. In 1817, Father Blasius Hauntinger purchased the manuscript from Melchior Kirchhofer in Schaffhausen for the Benedictine Rheinau Abbey; in 1863, the manuscript, along with the Rheinau Abbey Library, became part of the Cantonal Library (today Central Library) in Zurich. (ste)

Online Since: 12/20/2012

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Rh. 172
Parchment · 100 ff. · 20.4 x 13.9 cm · St. Gall · 15th century
Aurora consurgens

In its first part, the parchment manuscript contains the text that has been named, on the basis of its outstanding cycle of illustrations, the Aurora consurgens. The manuscript also contains numerous other alchemical treatises, for ex. Albertus Magnus on Secreta Hermetis philosophi, Johannes de Garlandia (John of Garland), excerpts from Geber (Jabir ibn Hayyan), the Thesaurus philosophiae and the Visio Arislei. Nine other Aurora-manuscripts are currently known to exist: Berlin Die uffgehnde Morgenrödte, Bologna, Glasgow, Leiden, Vienna, Paris, Prague and Venice. The Berlin manuscript, dating from the early sixteenth century and containing the illustrations as well as the texts in German translation, is closely related to the Zürich Codex. (ste)

Online Since: 06/09/2011

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Rh. hist. 27
Parchment · A + 99 ff. · 27-28 x 19-20 cm · Reichenau · early 9th century / 10th century
Codex of Fraternisation

The main portion of the manuscript Ms. Rh. hist. 27, written in the early 9th century, contains the so-called Codex of Fraternisation of Reichenau. Codices of Fraternisation contain a list of the members of the monastery's confraternities who were required to include the other living or deceased members of the confraternity into their daily prayers. The zone of influence was large, reaching from Reichenau in the South to Monteverde and Conques, from Mondsee in the East to Fulda and St. Trond in the North as well as to Jumièges in the West. Over 38.000 names are documented. The earliest entries have been continuously amended and updated for several centuries. At the end of the volume, following the Codex of Fraternisation, there are 15 leaves of parchment from the 10th-12th centuries containing lists of friars, additional names and transcriptions of charters. At the beginning of the volume there are straps glued on paper containing agreements of fraternisation and obituaries from the 14-16th centuries. (ste)

Online Since: 03/31/2011

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Zürich, Zentralbibliothek, Ms. Rh. hist. 33b
Paper · 168 ff. · 30 x 21 cm · Upper Rhine · around 1420-1440
War technology (Illuminated Manuscript)

This codex contains a rare illuminated manuscript constituted entirely by illuminated pages, for each of which only a succinct caption is given, most often only a line of text, and which therefore provides exceptional historical image-sources for numerous domains. The pictures presented here of military technology were perhaps originally part of a medieval house book. A typical collector’s item, this illuminated manuscript underscores the collection character of the Rheinau conventual library, whose librarians and abbots were expressly on the lookout for rare books. (ste)

Online Since: 06/09/2011

Documents: 2653, displayed: 2641 - 2653