Monday, January 20, 2014

On the custom of writing the list of Prenumeranten (pre-subscribers) in Hebrew Books

From the 18th century and on, many Hebrew Books can be found with Prenumeranten. It refers to people who ordered copies of a book before its publication. These pre-subscribers enjoyed the privilege of seeing their names in print in the list of prenumeranten included in the book. In Paks in 1903, a commentary on the Torah was published titled Zehav Mishkala זהב משקלה by Avraham Yehuda Klein, which was intended to be the first of 5 volumes.

Following the title page is a request for the readers to pre-subscribe to the future volumes, stating יש תועלת גדולה לנשמתו מי ששמו נדפס בספרים הקדושים
"There is a great benefit to the soul of one whose name appears in print in Holy Books"

תועלת גדולה לנשמתו מי ששמו נדפס בספרים הקדושים

Unfortunately, that doesn't appear to have been enough to entice supporters, as no other volume was published.

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