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Karaite

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee and Nehemia Gordon on Wed 13 Apr 2022

Nehemia, what are you working on today?

I’m a visiting scientist at the BAM Institute in Berlin (the Federal Institute for Research and Testing). One of the techniques they’ve developed is the use of a handheld device to distinguish between carbon and iron gall ink – the Dino-Lite. So, I’ve come to Cambridge University Library to look at a large number of Genizah Bible fragments – Torah scrolls, though not only – and I’m looking to see what the ink is: iron gall or carbon.

Are you hoping to tell from this when or where the manuscripts were written?... Read More

Has tags: Bible, codex, Firkovich, Genizah Fragments, ink, Karaite, Q&A, scribe, scroll, vocalisation

 

By Nadia Vidro on Mon 31 Jan 2022

Diversity and Rabbinization: Jewish Texts and Societies between 400 and 1000 CE ● Edited by Gavin McDowell, Ron Naiweld and Daniel Stökl Ben Ezra ● Open Book Publishers, 2021

The vast majority of Jews whose records are preserved in the Cairo Genizah were rabbinic. They derived their legal and theological systems primarily from rabbinic literature such as the Mishnah and the Talmuds and saw rabbinic leaders as the main authority. The only non-rabbinic group reflected in Genizah documents... Read More

Has tags: Book, Genizah Fragments, Karaite, Rabbanite

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee and Gary Rendsburg on Wed 1 Dec 2021

Gary, you’ve recently created a website dedicated to the life of Obadiah/Johannes of Oppido and his conversion to Judaism in the Middle Ages. How did you become interested in the manuscripts associated with Obadiah?

I actually do not recall the specific moment, but I can tell you that several lines converged: a) as I began to read more and more about medieval history, especially in the light of new research, including by my colleague Paola Tartakoff, I realized that conversion from Judaism to Christianity... Read More

Has tags: conversion, Genizah Fragments, Karaite, Q&A

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee on Thu 30 Sep 2021

Our Throwback Thursday this week is taken from issue 31 of the printed edition of Genizah Fragments, published in April 1996, by Judith Olszowy (now Olszowy-Schlanger)

As is well known, the Karaites have existed as an independent Jewish sect since their establishment in Babylonia around the eighth century. They have distinguished themselves from Rabbanite mainstream Judaism by rejecting the oral tradition, as recorded in the Talmud, and by considering the Bible as their exclusive source of legal authority.... Read More

Has tags: calendar, Genizah Fragments, Hebrew, Karaite, ketubba, legal, marriage

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee and Nadia Vidro on Wed 22 Sep 2021

Nadia, you’re starting a new project today. Can you tell us about it?

This new project, entitled “Saadya Gaon’s works on the Jewish calendar: Near Eastern sources and transmission to the West”, is a collaboration between UCL, London and LMU, Munich, and is funded by the Fritz Thyssen Foundation. The project is led by Professors Sacha Stern and Ronny Vollandt, with me as the research associate.

Saadiah b. Joseph al-Fayyūmī, better known as Saadiah Gaon (882–942 CE), was the most important and influential scholar of Judaeo-Arabic culture in the 10th century.... Read More

Has tags: calendar, Firkovich, Genizah Fragments, Karaite, Q&A, Saadiah Gaon

 

By Joseph Habib on Fri 17 Sep 2021

An Anonymous Karaite Commentary on Hosea from the Cairo Genizah ● By Friedrich Niessen ● Cambridge Genizah Studies Series, Volume 13 ● Brill 2021

In his preface to his commentary on the book of Hosea, St. Jerome, one of the greatest Biblical scholars of his time (5th century C.E.), wrote desperately,

If, in the exposition of all the prophets, we need the Holy Spirit’s intervention in order that — by whose inspiration they were written — they may be explained through... Read More

Has tags: Bible, Book, commentary, Genizah Fragments, Karaite

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee on Thu 16 Sep 2021

Our Throwback Thursday this week is taken from issues 8 and 9 of the printed edition of Genizah Fragments, published in October 1984 and April 1985, by Shaul Shaked:

Among their varied treasures, the Cairo Genizah collections contain valuable materials for the study of a number of fields of Jewish and general interest for which they have, until now, hardly been used at all. Among these fields are Judaeo-Persian texts and magic fragments and it was to... Read More

Has tags: Genizah Fragments, Karaite, magic, mystical, palimpsest, Persian

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee and Dotan Arad on Wed 4 Aug 2021

Dotan, what are you working on at the moment?

I’m working on a group of documents, mainly in Judaeo-Arabic, related to the relations between Karaites and Rabbanites in the Ottoman period, especially in Cairo and Jerusalem. Most of the documents are part of the Firkovich collection, such as Evr. Ar. II 1143, Evr. Ar. II 1408, Evr. Ar. II 1458 and more, but a few of them belong to other collections. For example, Mosseri VII.84.1, a torn loan deed, written in the 16th century, which testifies that a Karaite borrower, Jacob ibn Farjallah, owed money to a Rabbanite... Read More

Has tags: debt, Firkovich, Genizah Fragments, Karaite, marriage, Ottoman, Q&A, Rabbanite, responsa

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee on Thu 22 Jul 2021

Our Throwback Thursday this week is taken from issue 17 of the printed edition of Genizah Fragments, published in April 1989, by Geoffrey Khan while he was a Research Associate in the GRU:

Among the treasures of the Cairo Genizah collections are a number of Hebrew Bible manuscripts written in the Middle Ages by members of the Karaite Jewish sect. These manuscripts are unusual in that the text is written not in Hebrew, but in Arabic script, sometimes with Hebrew pointing. The synagogue in which the... Read More

Has tags: Arabic, Bible, British Library, Crusaders, Genizah Fragments, Hebrew, Karaite, language, Shapira

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee on Thu 8 Jul 2021

Our Throwback Thursday this week is taken from issue 12 of the printed edition of Genizah Fragments, published in October 1986, by Mordechai A. Friedman:

The ban of Rabbenu Gershom ben Judah of Mainz (early eleventh century), which prohibited polygamy among the Ashkenazim, was never accepted by Jewish communities living under Islam. But how polygamous were these Jews during the so-called “classical” Genizah period of the High Middle Ages, between the tenth and thirteenth centuries?

... Read More

Has tags: betrothal, Crusaders, divorce, Genizah Fragments, Gershom, get, Goitein, Karaite, mamluk, marriage, Mordechai Akiva Friedman, polygamy, responsa, Simcha Assaf, slave

 

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