Haggadah Shel Pesah


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(HAGGADAH). Haggadah Shel Pesah. Offenbach: Zevi-Hirsch Segal Spitz, [1795]. Small octavo, period-style full marbled sheep gilt, brown morocco spine label, marbled endpapers; ff. 40.

Lovely illustrated Offenbach Haggadah, with five in-text woodcuts portraying contemporary Ashkenazi (German) Jews, beautifully bound.

“The illustration of the Seder, which is printed in the middle of the Haggadah, is of interest. The members of the family are dressed in 18th-century fashion, and the entire scene has a contemporary flavor” (Yerushalmi 84). This edition uses Joel Brill’s important 1785 German translation in Hebrew characters, part of Moses Mendelssohn’s Haskalah (“Enlightenment”) movement toward an integration of Jews into mainstream German and European society. The woodcut stag device on the title page is the printer’s emblem of Zevi Hirsch Segal Spitz and his son Abraham, as Zevi, in Hebrew, and Hirsch, in German, both mean “stag.” Title within woodcut border. Yerushalmi 84. See Yaari 262-65.

A few stains and signs of ceremonial use. Lower corner of one leaf expertly restored, affecting a few words of text but not woodcut illustration; small expert repair to closed tear on title page. A very good copy.

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