Posts Tagged Cairo Geniza

REVIEW: This Noble House: Jewish Descendants of King David in the Medieval Islamic East

51smmUiqxAL._SS500_This Noble House: Jewish Descendants of King David in the Medieval Islamic East

Arnold E. Franklin

320 pages | 6 x 9 | 5 illus.

Cloth Sep 2012 | ISBN 978-0-8122-4409-0 | $65.00s | £42.50

Reviewed by Geoffrey Herman

In the 11th century, the Jewish community of Palestine was shaken by a scandal. According to a fragmentary letter found in the Cairo Geniza penned shortly after the incident, a certain individual had passed himself off as a nasi, one descending from the family of King David. He had “acquired for himself a good reputation and had in his possession a genealogy (a list of his ancestors)”. With these he had achieved a position of power and many submitted to his authority. After two years it became known that his lineage was inaccurate. And yet, as the author of the letter bemoans, even after it became known that his lineage was fictitious, “they were not ashamed or embarrassed to honour him, saying that he was (nevertheless) a sage”. He was not, however, allowed to maintain his position for long and “those who fear God” forcibly removed him from the city of Tiberias, exiling him to the “Lands of Edom.” Read the rest of this entry »

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REVIEW: Seride Teshuvot: A Descriptive Catalogue of Responsa Fragments from the Jacques Mosseri Collection in Cambridge University Library

Seride Teshuvot: A Descriptive Catalogue of Responsa Fragments from the Jacques Mosseri Collection in Cambridge University Library

Shmuel Glick et al.

Cambridge Genizah Studies 3; Leiden: Brill, 2012

Reviewed by Amir Ashur

The Cairo Genizah – the hoard of manuscripts found in the Ben Ezra synagogue in Fustat (Old Cairo) contains more than three hundred thousands documents covering more than thousand years of history – is by all means the most important source for the study of the history of Jews under Islam, and for the study of the relations between Jews and Muslim throughout the period, as was emphasized by S.D. Goitein repeatedly.  This vast amount of documents is kept in many collections all around the world. The largest collection is kept in Cambridge University Library – around two hundred thousands documents. Read the rest of this entry »

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