web analytics
September 1, 2015 / 17 Elul, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


The World Of Judaica

A very unusual silver Charoseth dish in the form of a wheelbarrow "pushed" by a Jewish figure.   Germany circa 1900.

A very unusual silver Charoseth dish in the form of a wheelbarrow "pushed" by a Jewish figure. Germany circa 1900.

Dear Jewish Press readers,

Welcome to the world of Judaica. As most of you know, the field can cover many things. But in the context of this column we are going to deal with the collecting aspect. Why do people collect Judaica?

The answers vary but include nostalgia, history, culture, and perhaps a spiritual enrichment at play when we look at the dedication of our ancestors in beautifying our synagogue service and our “minhagim” at home.

Collecting Jewish antiques entails a bit of dedication as well, as there are many different categories of art that we have to deal with.

The largest and most collected are the Jewish ritual objects, both for the synagogue and for the home.  Antique ritual objects for the synagogue are the magnificent Torah crowns and Rimonim (finials), Tassim (breastplates), Yadim (pointers), Parochets (Torah Ark curtains), mantles for the Torah and numerous other synagogue decorations like Mizrachs and Shevitis.

An important silver Holiday cup presented to the Jewish Historical Society of England by Anthony and Lionel de Rothschild in memory of their father Leopold de Rothschild (1845-1917). The cup is from Augsburg, Germany 1741-43.

An important silver Holiday cup presented to the Jewish Historical Society of England by Anthony and Lionel de Rothschild in memory of their father Leopold de Rothschild (1845-1917). The cup is from Augsburg, Germany 1741-43.

For the home of course we have the Chanukah Lamps, Menorahs, Kiddush cups, Havdallah candleholders, etc. There are also many handmade textiles, such as challah or matzah covers and wimples for the new born (part of the Yekkie tradition).

Gentile silversmiths made the silver objects from Central and Eastern Europe and most of Italy since Jewish craftsmen were excluded from the very powerful craft guilds from the early Middle Ages. The exception was in engraving which was permitted to them (paradoxically), thus we now have the beautifully hand-engraved Hebrew texts on our ritual objects. The German, Austrian and Italian masters who made some of the most magnificent Torah crowns, breastplates and spice containers, are known to us by name – such as the Mitnachts in Augsburg who dedicated themselves to active Jewish trade through three generations of silversmiths in the 18th century, or the Sandrats and Shullers in Frankfurt beginning in the 17th century.  Objects by these masters do come up on the market occasionally.

We also have fantastic silver creations from Poland, the Ukraine and Russia, but the names of those artists are mostly lost to us.

And then we have collectors of illustrated and illuminated manuscripts in the form of Haggadot or Megillot, Mizrachs and Shevitis, Omer calendars, etc.  The masters of Haggadot such as the Leipnic in the 18th century are well known to us and a Haggadah by such masters today would fetch anywhere between $300,000 to $500,000 dollars.

The artists who created some of the most beautiful illuminated Megillot are also known: Shalom d’Italia from Amsterdam, the creator of the first engraved (woodcut) Ketubah, also created a magnificent Megilla in the 17th century. An extraordinary, beautifully illuminated Megilla (17th century from Northern Italy) from the M. Steinhardt collection was sold at Sotheby’s in April 2013 for over $600,000.

A classic Seder plate, silver with the order of the service at center and scenes from the Haggadah on the rim. German, circa 1890.

A classic Seder plate, silver with the order of the service at center and scenes from the Haggadah on the rim. German, circa 1890.

About the Author: Romanian-born Peter Ehrenthal came to the States in 1957. He and his son have owned one of the finest Judaica galleries in the world since 1973.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “The World Of Judaica”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
The Palestinians have desecrated Joseph's Tomb on more than one occasion.
Capture of Joseph’s Tomb Terrorists Exposes Truth About Palestinian Authority
Latest Sections Stories
South-Florida-logo

The flag had been taken down in the aftermath of the Charleston shooting and was now back and flying.

South-Florida-logo

A light breakfast of coffee and danishes will be available during the program.

South-Florida-logo

A variety of glatt kosher food will be available for purchase at Kosher Korner (near Section 1).

South-Florida-logo

Jewish Press South Florida Editor Shelley Benveniste will deliver a talk.

Corey Brier, corresponding secretary of the organization, introduced the rabbi.

The magnificent 400-seat sanctuary with beautiful stained glass windows, a stunning carved glass Aron Kodesh, a ballroom, social hall, and beis medrash will accommodate the growing synagogue.

Even when our prayers are ignored and troubles confront us, Rabbi Shoff teaches that it is the same God who sent the difficulties as who answered our prayers before.

I’ve put together some of the most frequently asked questions regarding bullies, friendship and learning disabilities.

His parents make it clear that they feel the right thing is for Avi to visit his grandfather, but they leave it up to him.

There is a rich Jewish history in this part of the world. Now the hidden customs are being revealed, as many seek to reconnect with their roots.

There are times when a psychiatrist will over-medicate, which is why it’s important to find a psychiatrist whom you trust and feel comfortable with.

On November 22, 1963, Abraham Zapruder created one of the most famous, and valuable, pieces of film and became forever linked with one of the greatest American national tragedies when he stood with his camera on an elevated concrete abutment as President John F. Kennedy’s motorcade passed through Dealey Plaza in Dallas. Exhibited here is […]

More Articles from Peter Ehrenthal
Silver - Persia, 19th century.

While the Torah categorically forbids the practice of magic and sorcery, the type of magic that utilizes the many mystical

Chanukah lamp, Russia 19th century (2)

Synagogue ritual art is also abundant but for various reasons not usually collected.

A new generation of Sabra artists have come to the fore, creating imaginative and attractive pieces of arts.

The highlight of the auction was a superb and extremely rare ram-shaped silver spice container (very similar to the one in the Kiev Jewish Museum, and probably by the same maker) which brought $36,000.

Collecting Jewish antiques entails a bit of dedication as well, as there are many different categories of art that we have to deal with.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/features/features-on-jewish-world/the-world-of-judaica/2014/04/04/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: