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The Luzzatto Manuscript

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Samuel David Luzzatto’s Synonymia Hebraica (Mavdil Nirdafim) (c. 1815–1820) is a remarkable manuscript smuggled out of Germany by Alexander Guttmann in 1940. 

This beautifully bound notebook contains 25 essays in Hebrew, each exploring groups of words in the Bible with similar or identical meanings. All but one essay were later published in the journals Bikkurei Ha-Ittim (1825–1828) and Jeschurun (1856).  

What makes this item unique are the author’s corrections and notes in the margins, written in ink, crayon and pencil. It is thus a fascinating testament to the editing process. This item is on permanent loan to the Leo Baeck College Library from the Judaica Conservancy Foundation. 

See whole book here: