Thanks to this generous donor for making the publication of this book possible:
Jack B. Dweck.
The history and dramatic rescue of the oldest Hebrew Bible in book form
In Crown of Aleppo, Hayim Tawil and Bernard Schneider tell the incredible story of the survival, against all odds, of the Aleppo Codex-one of the most authoritative and accurate traditional Masoretic texts of the Bible.
Completed circa 939 in Tiberias, the Crown was created by exacting Tiberian scribes who copied the entire Bible into book form, adding annotations, vowel and cantillation marks, and precise commentary. Praised by Torah scholars for centuries after its writing, the Crown passed through history until the 15th century when it was housed in the Great Synagogue of Aleppo, Syria. When the synagogue was burned in the 1947 pogrom, the codex was thought to be destroyed, lost forever.
That is where its great mystery begins. Miraculously, a significant portion of the Crown of Aleppo survived the fire and was smuggled from the synagogue ruins to an unknown location-presumably within the Aleppan Jewish community. Ten years later, the surviving pages of the codex were secretly brought to Israel and finally moved to their current location in the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.
This wonderfully rich book contains more than 50 rare photographs and maps, some in full color, including those of the Aleppo Codex, the Great Synagogue of Aleppo, and of the people who played a part in its rescue.
Hayim Tawil, who received his Ph.D. from Columbia University, is professor of Hebrew Studies at Yeshiva University in New York. He has published numerous articles in comparative Semitic lexicography, and in 2001 was nominated for the Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights for his work in Yemen. Bernard Schneider, a tax lawyer, has had a long-standing interest in the Bible. He represented the United States at the International Bible Contest in 1983 and again in 1985.