Archive of ‘New Acquisitions’ category

William Castellana, artist, Brooklyn NY

Recent Acquisition–Collection of 20 photos by William Castellana of the Satmar hasidic community in Williamsburgh, Brooklyn.


Two men crossing street / Lee Avenue, Brooklyn, NY(2014)


Woman with children / Lee Avenue, Brooklyn, NY(2014)


Two men walking / Lee Avenue, Brooklyn, NY(2013)

Recent acquisition by the Yale U. Library

Das Hohe Lied Salomos, the biblical book, Song of Songs in German translation with woodcut illustrations by Ludwig von Hoffman (1865-1945). Berlin: Otto v. Holten, 1921. Limited edition of 30 copies. Yale has number 26 signed by the artist on the colophon page. The Song of Songs is read in the synagogue on the Sabbath of the Passover holiday (this year, April 22-30). It is attributed to King Solomon and deals with spring and young love. It is read on Passover, because the festival is associated with freedom, spring and renewal.


Recent Aquisitions.

Collection of documents of the Etz Hayim Yeshiva, Jerusalem, early 20th century


List of expectations for study and conduct of the students enrolled in the yeshiva


A group of letters of Rabbi Zevel Berznasky
and his wife Masha Beila of Chicago.

A printed letter in the name of Rabbi Shmuel Salant,
head of the Ashkenazi community of Jerusalem,
soliciting funds for the yeshiva, 1892.

Ketubah from 1890 Kashan (Persia)

IMG_0043“Marriage Contract. Uniting Reuven ben Moshe with Serach, daughter of Yechezkel. Manuscript in Hebrew, composed in Persian Hebrew square and cursive script on paper. Text within colorful triangular panels surrounded by rectangular blocs, red, orange, yellow and green predominating in floral motifs, with sidebar illuminated with geometrical motif. Folds with a few slight tears. 17 x 13.5 inches. Framed in glass 23 x 27 inches. Kashan (Persia), 17th Cheshvan, 1890.

Kashan is an ancient city located in the the province of Isfahan, Iran. Although reputed for its Jewish poets, at the close of the 19th-century there lived in Kashan no more than some 150 Jewish families in the midst of 30,000 Muslim inhabitants.” (Fine Judaica, Kestenbaum & Company, 2015)

New Ketubah from Rome, Italy, 1857

New Kebutah

Marriage contract, manuscript, ink and paint on vellum, dated 26th of
Av 5617 at Roma (1857), 79 x 45 cm.

Bridegroom: Matsliaḥ ben Mosheh Eliyahu mi-Ṿeroli.

Bride: Gratsya bat Aharon Menifi.

Witnesses: Ḥayim ben Avraham and one other.

The text is written in Italian block letters and is enclosed in a double border with sections framed in red. On the top, in the center register are two figures from biblical times who are appear to be serving wine. On either side are two images relating to the biblical story of the binding of Isaac (Gen. 22:2-14). On the bottom, in the center, are two figures in contemporary attire also serving celebratory drinks.

On either side, are images of two couples dressed in contemporary dress, who appear to be bridal couples.

side left side right

Other sections contain decorative elements including rams horns, doves, coats of arms, flowers and geometric designs.

The bottom is scalloped with a stylized vase in the center of the triangle, which is typical of ketubot from Rome.


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