Thursday, November 15, 2007

New Ginzei Qedem and New Genizah

Volume 3 of Ginzei Qedem, a publication of Yad Ben Zvi and the Friedberg Genizah Project, appeared recently. Table of contents here. I haven't seen the volume itself, but I saw one of the articles a few months back - a joint project by Avi Shmidman and Uri Ehrlich - and it is very interesting. It traces the development of the prayers appended to the end of the Amidah.

Another article in this volume, by Ezra Chwat and Nissim Sabato, publishes a Genizah fragment written by a student of Maimonides, based upon comments made by Maimonides on a passage in the Alfasi. These comments were never written in any of Rambam's works, they were just an oral comment. Thus the importance of this fragment.

What is more interesting, is that this particular fragment is the first published piece from a stash of Genizah fragments recently discovered in the National Library in Jerusalem. It is unknown when the fragments arrived in Jerusalem, but they sat unnoticed for decades until the room they were stored in was renovated over the past year. I look forward to more interesting finds from this twice discovered Genizah.


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