Photo Credit: Jewish Press

This week, I acquired a complete attractive set of the Mikraot Gedolot published in Amsterdam between the years 1724-1728.

This was the very first Mikraot Gedolot published solely by Jews – all six prior editions having been printed by Christian-owned printing presses, as Jews were barred from owning printing presses for centuries in many regions.

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This “Kehillot Moshe” edition contains an astounding 36 different commentaries on Tanach as well as the complete introductions of each of these commentaries, a feature often lacking in other Mikraot Gedolot editions.

Several of the commentaries were published in this edition for the very first time and several have never been published since. Included also are extensive indices, massorah magna and parva, and massoretic variations between Ben Asher and Ben Naftali.

The publisher and editor of this Mikraot Gedolot was R. Moshe Frankfurter (1672-1762), author of several sefarim including the Yiddish commentary Nefesh Yehuda on Menorat Hamaor. He was also a dayan and printer in Amsterdam. His printing press was founded in 1721 and it published many sefarim, including Sefer Hachaim, authored by his father.

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Israel Mizrahi is the owner of Mizrahi Bookstore in Brooklyn, NY, and JudaicaUsed.com. He can be reached at JudaicaUsed@gmail.com.