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Bidding Information
Lot #    35201
Auction End Date    7/17/2012 1:33:30 PM (mm/dd/yyyy)
Title Information
Title (English)    Elimah Rabbati
Title (Hebrew)    אילמה רבתי
Author    [Kabbalah - First Ed.] R. Moses Cordovero (Ramak)
City    Brody-Lvov
Publisher    Ehrenfeld
Publication Date    1881
Collection Information
Independent Item    This listing is an independent item not part of any collection
Description Information
   First edition. [4], 149, [5] ff. quarto 250:180 mm., wide margins, light age staining. A very good copy bound in modern cloth over boards.
   First edition of this important but little known systematic work on Kabbalah by R. Moses ben Jacob Cordovero (Ramak, 1522-1570), considered by many to be the greatest theoretician of Jewish mysticism. The title page informs that Elimah Rabbati was concealed for more than three hundred years, until it came into the hand of R. David Kohen who has brought it to light. The first part of Elimah Rabbati, through 53 ff. was printed in Brody anf the book was completed on Lvov. There are a large number of approbations, an introduction, a tefillah for all those who wish to enter the holy sanctuary of the Pardes, and then the text.

R. Moses ben Jacob Cordovero (Ramak, 1522-1570) was the first to describe the dialectical process of the Sefirot through which the Sefirot pass in their development and to interpret the various stages of their emanation as manifestations of the Divine mind. Ramak was a student of R. Joseph Caro and R. Solomon Alkabez, the latter his brother-in-law, who initiated him into the study of Kabbalah. Among his students was R. Isaac Luria (ha-Ari). R. Luria refers to R. Cordovero as his master and teacher, testifying that Ramak was completely free of sin, that both the sages of the Mishnah and Elijah the Prophet appeared to him, and that at Ramak’s funeral a pillar of fire preceded his coffin. A prolific writer, he is responsible for two of the classics of Kabbalah, Pardes Rimmonim and Tomer Devorah. The former, completed when Ramak was only twenty seven, is a large, comprehensive and systematic exposition of kabbalistic principles. It is, moreover, a synthesis between the major lines of Spanish Kabbalah, based on the Zohar, and elements of ecstatic Kabbalah, integrated for the first time in the work of a major Spanish kabbalist. Tomer Devorah, in contrast, is a small kabbalistic ethical and inspirational treatise. The popularity of this book is attested to by the number of times it has been reprinted and the fact that it has been translated into several languages, including English. Less well known are a number of other works written by Ramak. Based on his name, Cordovero appears to have been descended from Jewish exiles from the city of Cordova. It has been suggested, but this is uncertain, that he was born in Safed. Cordovero was a student of R. Joseph Caro (1488-1575) in nigleh (revealed, literal Torah) and, after heeding a heavenly voice that urged him to study Kabbalah, of his brother-in-law, R. Solomon Alkabez (Lekhah Dodi) in nistar (esoteric Torah, Kabbalah). Ramak became a leader of the ascetic mystical community of Safed, preparing for it a list of rules of conduct, primarily instructions and commands. It has been suggested, but this too is uncertain, that Ramak was one of the four ordained by R. Jacob Berab, not all in that small group being known with surety. Ramak served as a dayyan in Safed and founded a yeshivah there in about 1550, which he headed until his death in 1570. Among Cordovero’s students were R. Elijah de Vidas (Reshit Hokhmah), R. Abraham Galante (ha-Kadosh), R. Samuel Gallico (Asis Rimmonim, an abridgement of Pardes Rimmonim), R. Hayyim Vital, and R. Isaac Luria (ha-Ari). Although Luria was Cordovero’s student for a short while only, and his system of Kabbalah would supplant that of Cordovero, Others, such as R. Menahem Azariah da Fano (1548-1620), although in Italy, considered themselves disciples of Cordovero.

Paragraph 2    אשר חבר... ר' משה קורדואורו זלה"ה... מצפת... אשר הי' (בכ"י)... גנוז (פה... חברון... בישיבת הרב ר' יהודא ביבאס זצ"ל)... וכעת... (המביא לבית הדפוס והמעתיק והמגי') ר' דוד (בלא"א מו"ה מאיר) הכהן (מתושבי... חברון)... נדבה רוחו להפיץ חוצה... החכמה הנעלמה... להבין בחכמת האמת (דבי' שרשי הקדמות יותר פנימיות)... שנת כי קרן א'ור' פ'נ'י' מש'ה

בשער: "נדפס עד דף נג בק"ק בראדי. [ואחר כך] בדפוס... יעקב עהרענפרייז... בלבוב". בשולי השער, באותיות קיריליות: דפוס Lvov ,Budvaiser Karoll. בעמ' האחרון: "הספר... נדפס עד [גליון] נומר יג [דף נב] בבראדי, ומי"ג עד גמירא בבית הדפוס... [של] הח"מ (אורי זאב וואלף [סאלאט]), ואצל ר' יעקב משולם עהרינפרייז לא נדפס רק השער לבד". דף [4,ב]: "להתוודע... אשר נתעכב זמן הדפוס מהסה"ק זה רבות בשנים ... [ובינתיים] קפצו בע"ח [בעלי חוב] על בית הדפוס בראדי, ובתוכם נלכד גם הס[פר]". דף [4-3,א] הקדמת המעתיק והמגי', ר' דוד הכהן. דף [4,ב] "תפלה... מהאיש האלקי והמחבר... כמ"ש [כמו שנדפס] בהקדמתו לס' הפרדס" (פרדס רמונים). דף [1] בסוף: לוח התיקון... וכפי מה שהגהתי מכ"י הנמצא ביד... [ר' יהושע רוקח] אבד"ק בעלז שליט"א.

הסכמות: ר' יוסף תומארקין; ר' צבי הירש אורנשטיין, לבוב, ה טבת תרל"ט; ר' מאיר ליבוש מלבים, מאהליב; ר' שניאור זלמן [פראדקין], לובלין, ח אייר תרל"ה; ר' יקותיאל זלמן לנדא, וויטעפסק, יב תשרי תרל"ד; ר' ש[למה] זלמן פינסקר, [חערסאן]; ר' ארי' ליב בהרב, דענאבארג; [ר' יהודה ליב אייגער], לובלין, ב בהר תרל"ה (חתום בנו: ר' אברהם); ר' דוב בעריש [לאנדא, ביאלה] (חתום בנו: ר' יצחק לאנדא); ר' אליאן סלימאן מני, חברון; ר' שמעון מנשה ב"ר משה [חייקין], חברון; (בסוף הספר, דף [2,א] רבני בראדי: ר' מאיר בהגאון מהרי"ם [יחיאל מיכל קריסטיאנפולר] ור' יצחק אייזיק שעהנפעלד, טז אלול תר"ם; ר' מנחם מענדל שור, [בראדי], כז מרחשון תרמ"א.

   CD-EPI 0163311
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Listing Classification
19th Century:    Checked
Russia-Poland:    Checked
Kabbalah:    Checked
First Editions:    Checked
Language:    Hebrew
Manuscript Type
Kind of Judaica