The Ancient Sefer Torah of Bologna

Features and History. European Genizah Texts and Studies, Volume Four


Editor: Mauro Perani
The Ancient Sefer Torah of Bologna: Features and History contains studies on the most ancient, complete, Pentateuch scroll known to date, considered by the Jews of Perpignan the archetypal autograph written by Ezra the scribe. The scroll was rediscovered by Mauro Perani in 2013 at the University Library of Bologna. In this volume, leading specialists study the history, structure and different halakhot or norms adopted in the pre-Maimonidean scroll. The Hebrew text is very close to the Aleppo codex, and the scroll was probably copied in a Kabbalistic circle near Perpignan, ca. 1200, where the use of tagin and curled letters flourished, attributing to them mystical and exoteric meanings.

E-Book List price

EUR €149.00USD $179.00

Biographical Note

Mauro Perani, Ph.D. honoris causa (2013), the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, is Full Professor of Hebrew at the Bologna University, former President (2006-2010) of the European Association for Jewish Studies (EAJS) and President of the Associazione Italiana per lo Studio del Giudaismo (AISG) from 2003 to present.

Table of contents


Part 1: History and Vicissitudes of the Bologna Ancient Sefer Torah

1 The Many Lives of the ‘Bible of Esdras’: Proposals for a Long-term Investigation
Rita De Tata

2 The “Ezra Scroll” of Bologna: Vicissitudes of an Archetype between Memory and Oblivion
Saverio Campanini

Part 2: Writing, Textual and Paratextual Features of the Bologna Scroll

3 Textual and Para-textual Devices of the Ancient Proto-Sephardic Bologna Torah Scroll
Mauro Perani

4 The Making of the Bologna Scroll: Palaeography and Scribal Traditions
Judith Olszowy-Schlanger

5 The 12th–13th Century Torah Scroll in Bologna: How It Differs from Contemporary Scrolls
Jordan S. Penkower

Part 3: Comparison with Other Ancient Sifre Torah

6 The Sefer Torah of Biella: History of the Unearthing and Initial Investigations
Amedeo Spagnoletto

7 Criteria for Dating the Sefer Torah Meran 1 and Its Peculiar System of Otiyyot Meshunnot
Josef M. Oesch and Franz D. Hubmann

8 The Torah Scroll Fragment from the Parochial Archives in Romont (Switzerland)
Justine Isserles, Josef M. Oesch and Franz D. Hubmann


All scholars and people interested in the history of how the scribes copied the Sefer Torah.

Index Card