Since 1754: The study of Hebrew at Columbia (and a new acquisition)

From its inception in 1754, the founders of Columbia University felt that the study of Hebrew was critical to understanding the classics.  Columbia’s collection includes founder Samuel Johnson’s own copy of a Hebrew-Latin psalms with the Hebrew alphabet written in his own hand. Another professor in the 18th century was Johann Kunze, who taught Hebrew […]

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Italian Jewish Community Broadsides – now digitized!

As posted earlier this year, we had acquired 40 broadsides and other pamphlets containing regulations pertaining to the Italian Jewish community.  I am pleased to announce that these pamphlets have now been digitized, and are fully available in Columbia’s Digital Library Collections. Each item is searchable with the first words (in Italian) of the document, […]

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New Acquisition: Kotar (Hebrew e-books from Israeli presses)

A collaboration of leading Israeli publishers, Kotar is a large collection of reference materials, scholarly books, biographies, and other materials related to Israeli and Jewish topics. Kotar aims to provide students, teachers, and scholars with the best sources of information published over the last 50 years in Hebrew, along with an online work environment. Kotar […]

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Conservation and book repair, historical and modern

The Conservation Department at Columbia University Libraries is an often unsung hero of the libraries.  The work of their talented conservators encompasses all areas of the library, and ensures that our collections, both modern and ancient, will endure for years to come. Many times, in a routine conservation activity, hidden aspects of books come to […]

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Save the date! Alexander lecture with Jenna Joselit Weissman, November 1

We are very pleased to announce that Jenna Weissman Joselit, Charles E. Smith Professor of Judaic Studies and Professor of History, and Director of the Program in Judaic Studies at George Washington University will be giving the annual Norman E. Alexander Lecture this year, on November 1, 2016.  The title of the lecture is: “Rock […]

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NEA Library Spring 2016 Newsletter

Our latest newsletter is up!  Click here to download our Spring 2016 newsletter (with live links). Highlights include: details about the Jewish collections included in the Global Studies exhibition in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library; updates on the digitization of the Language and Culture Atlas of Ashkenazic Jewry; links to the video for the […]

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Three kabbalistic “brother” manuscripts identified: Paris, London, and New York

The British Library is working on digitizing their complete (and incredible) collection of Hebrew manuscripts.  In the process of doing so, they have been asking scholars, experts in their various fields, to write articles on various aspects of the Hebrew manuscripts.  This was the case with a recent article written by noted Kabbalah scholar Yossi […]

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Jewish Studies materials to be featured in Global Studies exhibit, April 4-June 24, 2016

Six items from the Jewish Studies collections will be featured as part of an exhibit featuring Global materials in Columbia’s Special Collections (more information about the general exhibit below).  Included in the Jewish Studies portion will be a manuscript copy of Spinoza’s Opera Posthuma; a Jewish elegy for Maria Theresa of Austria; a scroll of […]

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Adventures in the Stacks: Everything Old is New Again

The wonderful thing about Columbia’s rare Judaica collection is that there is so much yet to be discovered – and rediscovered!  A brief foray into the RBML rare stacks always yields wonderful stories.  A couple of weeks ago, I began looking at some of the very largest rare Hebrew books, trying to see if any […]

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