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By Kim Phillips on Fri 23 Jul 2021

Do you need a short, memorable overview of when the shewa is silent or sounded, and how to pronounce it? Or perhaps a recap of when the accent tevir is preceded by darga, and when by merkha? Maybe you’d like a succinct reminder of the various fiddly rules regarding the spirantisation of the begadkefat letters when they begin a word ending in one of the letters alef, vav, yod or he? Or maybe you’d settle for a summary of the different pronunciations of the letter resh? If so - you need the quntrese... Read More

Has tags: Book, Genizah Fragments, Hebrew, language, masora

 

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 and Moshe Yagur on Wed 21 Jul 2021

Hi Moshe, what are you working on at the moment?

In my new project I’m working on dwelling patterns of Jews, Christians and Muslims in medieval Egypt (and a bit elsewhere). We know they lived side by side, but to what extent? How did it effect notions of communal identity, religious practices, inter-religious contacts and sympathies, and so on?

Which kinds of Genizah manuscript are you utilising for this?

There are several kinds of documents to look at:

1. Deeds of sale or rent, written either in Jewish or Muslim court,... Read More

Has tags: Fustat, Genizah Fragments, Goitein, legal, Moses Maimonides, Muslim-Jewish relations, property

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee on Thu 15 Jul 2021

It’s the 15th of July, and 922 years since the Christian armies of the First Crusade captured Jerusalem from her Fatimid defenders. The siege of 38 days ended in a bloodbath, according to contemporary accounts, but the Cairo Genizah preserves what may be the earliest written account of some of the events of that day, and its aftermath. Weeks after Jerusalem was looted and burned, the elders of Ashqelon wrote to the Egyptian Jewish community to describe the reports of refugees who had either fled there ahead of the Crusaders or had been captured and released by them. 

... Read More

Has tags: Crusaders, Fatimid, Genizah Fragments, Goitein, Jerusalem

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee and Oded Zinger on Wed 14 Jul 2021

Oded, what are you working on at the moment?

I’m currently working on several court notes (for example Mosseri VII.207.1 and Mosseri VII.189.2). Mosseri VII.207.1 is a small note written by the court clerk (probably Hillel b. Eli or Halfon b. Manasseh in his early years) to the judge. A woman presented a bill of divorce which appeared suspicious. It was dated according to the calendar of deeds (shetarot) though the writer claims that it was not the custom of the judge to use this type of dating, and the bill of divorce also lacked the legal formula on its verso that... Read More

Has tags: agunah, divorce, dowry, Firkovitch, Genizah Fragments, legal, Mosseri, petition, Q&A

 

By Nick Posegay on Thu 8 Jul 2021

GRU researcher Dr. Magdalen Connolly and I have just published an article about Genizah Qurʾan fragments in the Journal of Qurʾanic Studies, titled “A Survey of Personal-Use Qurʾan Manuscripts Based on Fragments from the Cairo Genizah.” In it, we identify 25 separate manuscripts of the Qurʾan – the holy book of Islam – in Cairo Genizah collections, including many in Cambridge. These manuscripts span the entire Genizah period and raise questions about medieval and pre-modern Jewish peoples’ engagement with... Read More

Has tags: article, Genizah Fragments, Qurʾan

 

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

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee and José Martínez Delgado on Wed 7 Jul 2021

Pepe, what are you working on at the moment?

As always, I’m dealing with grammatical issues, working with the book of Hayyuj, on the study of the transmission of Biblical Hebrew in al-Andalus. But not just that, these days! I started working on grammatical texts in the Genizah back in 2007, but I came to recognise an impediment to many Genizah researchers – we only work on our ‘own’ topics. After I met Nadia Vidro, she introduced me to the world of the Karaites, and Amir Ashur opened up the world of al-Andalus. I realised that, although I deal with grammarians... Read More

Has tags: al-Andalus, Genizah Fragments, grammar, Hayyuj, Judah ha-Levi, Q&A, slave

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee on Thu 1 Jul 2021

Our Throwback Thursday this week is taken from issue 32 of the printed edition of Genizah Fragments, published in October 1996, by Jack R. Lundbom, while he was a Visiting Fellow at Clare Hall:

What induced me to consult the Taylor-Schechter Genizah fragments in the Cambridge University Library was an interest in section markings in ancient biblical manuscripts. Modern critical editions of the Hebrew Bible, e.g. Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia, designate these sections open or closed, the former by a... Read More

Has tags: Bible, Dead Sea Scrolls, Genizah Fragments, scroll, sigla

 

By Melonie Schmierer-Lee and Ben Outhwaite on Wed 30 Jun 2021

So, Ben what are you working on today?

Well, life’s pretty varied at the moment. The GRU has a number of projects on the go, and so I’m spending quite a lot of time happily immersed in manuscripts (or, at least, their digital surrogates, since I am still working from home) in a way that I haven’t had the opportunity to for about the last 15 years, since I was a full-time researcher myself. At any one time, I may be describing documentary fragments from the T-S New Series, checking descriptions produced by other GRU researchers, enriching the TEI of descriptions with... Read More

Has tags: Genizah Fragments, liturgy, Moses Maimonides, Q&A, Saadiah Gaon, Solomon of Sijilmassa

 

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