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The Manuscripts

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Chapter Summary

The 21 manuscripts examined in this chapter come from a variety of sources, some from Sperbers apparatus, others from various libraries. These manuscripts belong to five major traditions: Palestinian, Babylonian, Yemenite, Ashkenazi and Sepharadi. Ms F (Reuchlin 3) is considered Palestinian. The Babylonian texts, considered to be the earliest, carry pre-Tiberian massorot of vowel and accents systems. The two texts used here, Eb 80 and Eb 88, have no date. Yemenite mss are often called Babylonian-Yemenite. Five are examined here. The best Yemenite mss were written by professional scribes commissioned by wealthy Jews from the capital Sanʿa. The seven Ashkenazi mss, provenance unknown, range from the late 13th to the 14th century. The six Sepharadi mss range from the 13th to the early 16th century, one from Italy.

Keywords: Ashkenazi; Babylonian; Jews; manuscripts; Palestinian; Sepharadi; Yemenite



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