Lot 51: Manuscript - Siddur Kavanot Ha'Ari, Edited by Rabbi Moshe Zacuto - Italy, Early 18th Century
15 November 2016
Jerusalem, IsraelLive Auction
Description: Manuscript, Siddur Kavanot Ha'Ari, edited by the kabbalist Rabbi Moshe (Moses ben Mordecai) Zacuto - the Remez. [Livorno, Italy, early 18th century]. "Siddur of prayers with the kavanot from the siddur of the Remez, copied from the siddur of the Mohari Tzemach of Jerusalem which he copied from the siddur of the G-dly Torah scholar Rabbi Chaim Vital". Complete manuscript, in semi-cursive Oriental script. Impressive scribal writing. The text of the prayers is written in large letters and the kavanot in smaller letters. On some pages, the text of the prayer is separated from the kavanot with a vertical line. In some places, the text was vowelized by a later writer. Includes weekday and Shabbat prayers, tikun Rosh Chodesh, kavanot for the Blessing of the New Moon, Chanuka, Purim, bein haMetzarim and Birkat HaMazon. This manuscript belonged to the researcher Prof. Meir Benayahu who added a [penciled] note on page  that he had seen an almost identical manuscript written in Livorno by R. Shlomo son of R. Yitzchak Aluf in 1724 which had been in the possession of the Ancona library (apparently it was purchased by the Chida in Livorno and his son R. Refael Yeshaya brought it to Ancona at the time he served as Rabbi of Livorno). Afterward the manuscript passed on into private hands. Evidently, this manuscript as well was written by R. Shlomo Aluf in Livorno. The Or HaChaim mentions R. Shlomo Aluf in the introduction to his book Pri To'ar, praising him highly and noting his assistance in printing the book. Besides the aforementioned manuscript from 1724, other manuscripts he copied are the siddur with the kavanot of the Ari which he had written in Livorno (in the past the Ancona-Rosenberg manuscript and today in the University of California), and another manuscript titled Megillat Setarim which he wrote in 1710 (Benayahu library). The watermarks on the leaves of this manuscript can be found on manuscripts which were written in the Ottoman Empire in the 17th century. The Remez died in 1697 and apparently this manuscript was copied a short while after his death, in the beginning of the 18th century. As far as we know, this manuscript is one of the few which contain the full version of the kavanot edited by R. Moshe Zacuto and it has never been printed. Usually, manuscripts have a number of leaves with Kitzur (abridged) Kavanot HaRemez, but not the full version. Another siddur edited "according to the Remez" by his disciple R. Binyamin Cohen Margio (the Rabach) differs from this version. On the leaves are long marginalia in cursive Oriental script from the 19th century with various kavanot and additions, evidently written by a scholar who was erudite in kabbalistic wisdom. He and other scholars added various compilations of prayers, kavanot, hashba'ot and segulot from kabbalistic, Chassidic, Sephardi and Ashkenazi sources on the blank leaves at the beginning and end of the manuscript. These inscriptions include a section of prayer from Likutei Tefillot by Rabbi Nachman of Breslev "to truly yearn and long for Eretz Israel", a hashba'ah against ayin hara by the Pele Yo'etz; "My teacher every day used to say a version of a prayer based on the subject of reincarnation and I will copy it here"; Jewish-Arabic list, ending with "manuscript of Hillel Yosef Avraham" (on a piece of paper pasted on the leaf); other sections.  pages (including 60 blank pages). 16 cm. Good condition. Stains. Few leaves in fair condition, with tears to margins. New leather binding, housed in a matching leather case. Enclosed is a report by Prof. Shlomo Zucker, an expert on Hebrew manuscripts, regarding the importance and distinctiveness of this manuscript.