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Detailed record for Additional 19776

Title Pentateuch (the 'Coburg Pentateuch') with the Five Scrolls (Hamesh megillot), Haftarot, and grammatical treatises
Origin Germany, Central (Coburg)
Date 1390-1396
Language Hebrew
Script Ashkenazi square script, partially punctuated
Scribe Simhah ben Samuel ha-Levi scribe, Samuel ben Abraham of Molerstadt punctuator of the Pentateuch, Gershom ben Judah punctuator of the rest of the codex.
Decoration 3 miniatures at the end of the biblical books (ff. 54v, 72v, 96). 4 decorated initial-word panels with foliate motifs and gold letters (ff. 1v, 28v, 117v, 132v). 4 initial-word panels inhabited by dragons and hybrids (ff. 55, 73, 96v, 170). 1 initial word inhabited by hybrids and animals (f. 190). 4 decorated initial words (ff. 119v, 121v, 124, 128). 1 decoration embedded into the body of the text (f. 72), 1 marginal drawing depicting a deer (f. 55v), and 2 micrographic designs of masorah (ff. 7, 28v).
Dimensions in mm 290 x 215 (180/175 x 135)
Official foliation ff. 252 (+3 unfoliated paper flyleaves at the beginning and at the end)
Collation i8 (ff. 1-8), ii8 (ff. 9-16), iii8 (ff. 17-24), iv8 (ff. 25-32), v8 (ff. 33-40), vi8 (ff. 41-48), vii8 (ff. 49-56), viii8 (ff. 57-64), ix8 (ff. 65-72), x8 (ff. 73-80), xi8 (ff. 81-88), xii8 (ff. 89-96), xiii8 (ff. 97-104), xiv8 (ff. 105-112), xv8 (ff. 113-120), xvi8 (ff. 121-128), xvii8 (ff. 129-136), xviii8 (ff. 137-144), xix8 (ff. 145-152), xx8 (ff. 153-160), xxi8 (ff. 161-168), xxii8 (ff. 169-176), xxiii8 (ff. 177-184), xxiv8 (ff. 185-192), xxv8 (ff. 193-200), xxvi8 (ff. 201-208), xxvii8 (ff. 209-216), xxviii8 (ff. 217-224), xxix8 (ff. 225-232), xxx6 (ff. 233-238), xxxi8 (ff. 239-246), xxxii6 (ff. 247-252).
Form Parchment codex
Binding Post-1600. Dark brown leather.
Provenance Written by Rabbi Simhah bar Samuel ha-Levi: mentioned as Simhah Levi the scribe in a colophon at the end of the Pentateuch, on Monday 21, Adar Sheni, 1395 (f. 169v); mentioned as scribe in the colophon at the end of the codex, Coburg, 1396 (f. 252); the word simhah is decorated several times (e.g. ff. 17v, 112v, 126v, 131v, 132, 154v, 184v).
The Pentateuch was punctuated by R. Samuel bar Abraham of Molerstadt: mentioned in a marginal note as the punctuator, of Molerstadt (f. 96); inscribed with his name in a colophon as the punctuator who punctuated the codex 'until this point' within six weeks, of Molerstadt, Sunday, beginning of Kislev (f. 112); mentioned as punctuator of the Pentateuch who punctuated it in Babenberg, colophon at the end of the codex, Coburg, 1396 (f. 252).
The Five Scrolls, the Haftarot and the grammatical treatise were punctuated by R. Gershom bar Judah in Rödelsee, colophon at the end of the codex, Coburg, 1396 (f. 252).
Written by Meir bar Obadiah called the young Liebertrot: inscribed with his name in the colophon at the end of the codex, Coburg, 1396 (f. 252); his name and the year 156 [1396] in acrostic (f. 117).
Obituary entries: death of a later owner's parents (Bittingen, 1535 and Wallerstein, 1539) (f. 252).
Alexander ben Solomon Zalman Kohen: owner inscribed with his name, 1750 (f. 1).
Illegible Hebrew inscriptions [f. 1].
M. Ashkenazi: purchased by the British Museum from him through D. Nutt in April 1854 (f. [253v]).
Notes Catchwords are sometimes decorated (e.g. ff. 48v, 184v, 192v, 200v).
Foliation in pencil can be found also in the outer lower corner of recto sides, hardly visible.
Select bibliography George Margoliouth, Catalogue of the Hebrew and Samaritan Manuscripts in the British Museum, 4 vols (London: British Museum, 1899-1935; vols I-III repr. 1965); IV, Introduction, Indexes, ed. by Jacob Leveen (London: British Museum, 1977), I, no. 80.

Bezalel Narkiss, Hebrew Illuminated Manuscripts (New York: Macmillan, 1969), p. 114.

Jürgen Erdmann, 'Der Coburg-Pentateuch, ein neuentdecktes Dokument der mittelalterlichen Geistes- und Kulturgeschichte Coburgs: zum Codex Ms Add 19776 in der Bibliothek des Britischen Museums in London', Jahrbuch der Coburger Landesstiftung, 25 (1980), 85-110.

Therese and Mendel Metzger, Jewish Life in the Middle Ages: Illuminated Hebrew Manuscripts of the Thirteenth to the Sixteenth Centuries (New York: Alpine Fine Arts Collection, 1982), p. 304.

Ilana Tahan, Hebrew Manuscripts: The Power of Script and Image (London, British Library, 2007), p. 42.


Images
* * *
 
Decorated initial-word panel

f. 1v
Decorated initial-word panel
Micrography

f. 7
Micrography
Decorated initial-word panel

f. 28v
Decorated initial-word panel
 
Initial-word panel

f. 28v
Initial-word panel
A scholar

f. 54v
A scholar
A scholar

f. 54v
A scholar
 
Inhabited initial-word panel

f. 55
Inhabited initial-word panel
Dragons

f. 55
Dragons
Deer

f. 55v
Deer
 
Deer

f. 55v
Deer
Decorated page

f. 72
Decorated page
Inhabited initial-word panel

f. 73
Inhabited initial-word panel
 
Hazzan

f. 96
Hazzan
Inhabited initial-word panel

f. 96v
Inhabited initial-word panel
~Carmina figurata~

f. 116v
Carmina figurata
 
Acrostic of the owner's name

f. 117
Acrostic of the owner's name
Decorated initial-word panel

f. 117v
Decorated initial-word panel
Ruth

f. 119v
Ruth
 
Lamentations

f. 121v
Lamentations
Ecclesiastes

f. 124
Ecclesiastes
Esther

f. 128
Esther
 
Decorated initial-word

f. 132v
Decorated initial-word
Text page

f. 159
Text page
Text page

f. 159v
Text page
 
Colophon

f. 169v
Colophon
Inhabited initial-word panel

f. 170
Inhabited initial-word panel
Detail of a page: inhabited initial-word panel at the ...

f. 170
Detail of a page: inhabited initial-word panel at the ...
 
Text page

f. 184v
Text page
Decorated initial word

f. 190
Decorated initial word
Inhabited initial word

f. 190
Inhabited initial word
 
Decorated catchword

f. 192v
Decorated catchword
Text page

f. 200v
Text page
Text page

f. 234v
Text page
 
Text page

f. 240
Text page

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