Pinḳas ... poh Bisha, 1798-1799. = פנקס ... פה בישא, 1798-1799.

Friemann, Avraham.
פריעמנן, אברהם.
1 volume (29 leaves) : paper ; 172 x 105 (160 x 85) mm bound to 175 x 111 mm.

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Pinkasim -- 18th century.
Jews -- France -- Alsace -- 18th century.
Jews -- Czech Republic -- Prague -- 18th century.
Bischheim (France) -- History -- Sources.
Codices (bound manuscripts)
Manuscripts, Hebrew -- 18th century.
Manuscripts, European.
Hebrew and Yiddish, with Yiddish notes at the end (f. 26v-28r) and a few words in German (f. 13r).
This is a manuscript of a mohel, or ritual circumcisor, named Avraham Freimann, documenting the circumcisions he performed, Alsatian travelers and community life, as well as various historical events occurring in and around Bischheim. He originated in Prague, and notes on the title page (f. 1r) that he began practicing circumcisions while he was studying in a yeshivah there; his first circumcision was on Rosh Ḥodesh Adar 1768 in Běchovice, with more circumcisions noted in the Prague environs and travels in Germany in the subsequent years, mentioning Lubno, Ansbach, Friesenhausen, and Dresden. Next, the author begins a new list with his move to Bischheim (Bísche in Alsatian), in the historical region of Alsace (the scribe titles it as "Hatḥalah be-ʻAlzos," f. 2r), today a commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Grand Est region of France. The first entry in the new list is for a circumcision in Walbrunn in Iyyar 1774. Other circumcisions are recorded in Bischheim, Ittenheim, Osthoffen, Botwiller, Schopfloch, Reishaufen, Haguenau and Mundolsheim. Notable circumcision entries include ceremonies in the presence of "the honorable Herz Mendelsheim", who was Herz Cerfbeer von Mendelsheim, army purveyor to the courts of King Louis XV and Louis XVI (Mendelsheim?, ca. 1730- Strasbourg, 1793; f. 3r, 4v) and a mention of a relative of the Auerbach family living in Bischheim, from the prominent rabbinic family from Bavaria (f. 13v). Some notable entries which document events in the community involve the War of the First Coalition between France and the European Powers: a hurried ceremony on 19 Av 1794 in Bischheim during a riot of "haters of Rofichlun [?], שונאי ראפיכלין" from neighboring "Ṿantsine" (La Wantzenau, sometimes called Wanzenowe) would destroy the synagogue, but "God foiled their evil plot" (f. 10r); an elaborate inscription celebrating a family arriving on a boat on the Rhine after being held capture by the invading German‏ troops, in which Shimon b. Mosheh and his family escaped using the Schiffsbrücken (pontoon bridges) near Strasbourg to Kehl in secret while the Germans were dozing ("yeshenim shenat ha-sus") after the enemies were driven to the Donau, and upon the arrival of the hostages and a circumcision ceremony there was great celebration (f. 13r-13v). He inscribes his grief and sorrow on the day his son was enlisted into service by the armies of Napoleon, in Switzerland, and had to move to Basel to wage war against England and notes that he prayed daily for his return and that he should remain Jewish (f. 19v-20r); the last entry by Freimann possibly mentions his son's return, during a ceremony in which he served as sandaḳ, perhaps for his grandson. The entries are written in simple form, most being two lines containing the date, name, and sometimes place of the circumcision performed. Written in Ashkenazic cursive script, with many entries hastily written and with different color inks. In a co‏lored board binding with a soft leather spine, likely original.
Ms. codex.
Penn Provenance:
Possible ownership inscription, Frydman, written in ballpoint pen on the title page; possibly also a later transcription of the scribe's name on this page (f. 1r).
Presented to The Penn Libraries in 2018 by Joseph and Susan Moldovan (C'76).
Cited as:
UPenn CAJS Rar Ms 493.
Moldovan, Joseph, donor.
Moldovan, Susan, donor.
Moldovan Family Judaica Collection (University of Pennsylvania)