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Bidding Information
Lot #    10551
Auction End Date    5/24/2005 11:54:00 AM (mm/dd/yyyy)
Title Information
Title (English)    Shivhei ha-Besht
Title (Hebrew)    שבחי הבעש'ט
Author    [Hasidim]
City    Lvov?
Publication Date    c. 1830
Collection Information
Independent Item    This listing is an independent item not part of any collection
Description Information
   [48] ff., 185:119 mm., upper margin trimmed affecting running titles, use and age staining. A good copy bound in modern cloth boards.
Paragraph 1    The Isaac Mehlman copy with his notes on fly in pencil.
   Yiddish edition of Shivhei ha-Besht, compiled by Dov Baer b. Samuel of Linits, the son-in-law of Alexander Shohat, who served for several years as Besht's scribe. The collection was copied many times and hence was full of errors. Only after the compiler's death was it printed as Shivhei ha-Besht by the publisher Israel Jaffe, a disciple of R. Menahem Mendel of Vitebsk and R. Shneur Zalman of Lyady. Jaffe proofread the anthology, removing distortions which in his opinion resulted from copying. He rewrote the first chapter on R. Israel's birth, youth, and revelation according to the tradition given by Shneur Zalman. Thus Jaffe must be viewed as the second author and editor of the anthology, and his edition, printed in Kopys (Kapust) in 1814, has been accepted as the basic one; all other editions are based on it, with only slight changes. In that year the second book was printed in Berdichev and the third in Laszczow. Similarly, two editions appeared in Yiddish (Ostraha (Ostrog) and Laszcow) which differ greatly from the Hebrew edition. Shivhei ha-Besht appeared in many versions, in Hebrew, Yiddish, and Ladino. But even Hasidim had reservations about the work, especially the strange and unreliable stories which aroused the criticism and scorn of the Mitnaggedim and maskilim, who used it as a weapon in their war against Hasidim. It contains some 230 stories, arranged in series united by common themes, heroes, and motifs. Despite its imaginary-legendary character, historical events are recalled along with undoubtedly reliable traditions. Many of the historical events recalled are confirmed in non-hasidic sources.
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Listing Classification
19th Century:    Checked
Russia-Poland:    Checked
Hasidic:    Checked
History:    Checked
Language:    Yiddish
Manuscript Type
Kind of Judaica