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Bidding Information
Lot #    10572
Auction End Date    5/24/2005 12:15:00 PM (mm/dd/yyyy)
Title Information
Title (English)    Ha-Mafte'ah
Title (Hebrew)    המפתח
Author    [Polemic - Only Ed.] Moses Aaron Shatzkes
City    Warsaw
Publisher    Ch. Kelter i Spolki; F. Baumriter
Publication Date    1866-69
Collection Information
Independent Item    This listing is an independent item not part of any collection
Description Information
   First edition. Two volumes, 228:140 mm., usual light age staining, stamps. A very good copy not bound.
   The book analyzes talmudic legends, starting from the premise that they are merely ethical allegories, not to be taken literally. This theory, acceptable to the moderates of the Haskalah movement, was anathema to Orthodox Jews, who tried to prevent publication of the book, and in some towns even burned copies.

Moses Aaron Shatzkes (1825–1899), Hebrew writer. Born in Karlin, Belorussia, he studied in Lithuanian yeshivot, and then joined the Haskalah movement. He gained a literary reputation through his book Ha-Mafte'ah ("The Key," 1869). Shatzkes wrote articles in the same vein (Ha-Asif, 2 (1885), 241–61; Ha-Sifrut, 3 (1889/90), 103–18; and others). In Yiddish he published anonymously Der Yudisher for Pesakh ("Preparations for Passover," 1881) in which he attacked superstitions associated with the Passover festival. Toward the end of his life, he moved to Kiev, where he became a leading figure in the Haskalah circle noted for his pungently witty conversation.

Paragraph 2    לפתוח בו את שערי היכלי אגדות חז"ל (ברכות-עוקצין [עם הפנים])... להוציא... את... הנמשל... את הפתרון והבאור... לגלות אוצרות חשך... ממני משה אהרן בר' יהושע העשיל ז"ל שאצקעס, נין ונכד להרב... ר' שמואל ז"ל אב"ד דק"ק קארלין... מחברת [א]-ב.

שער נוסף לכל מחברת: Hamafteach, oder der Schluessel, zum labyrinth der aeussert raethselhaften Sagen unserer Weisen... von M. A. Schatzkes, aus Karlin in Russland. בקורת על הספר: ישראל דוד מילר, מלחמת סופרים, ווילנא תרל"א; אברהם דוב דובזוויץ, לא דבים ולא יער, ברדיטשוב תר"ן.

   CD-EPI 0304348; EJ
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Listing Classification
19th Century:    Checked
Russia-Poland:    Checked
Polemics:    Checked
Other:    Haskalah
First Editions:    Checked
Language:    Hebrew
Manuscript Type
Kind of Judaica