The Friedberg Genizah Project

Dr. Binyamin Richler

BA, MS (Jerusalem)

1940 Born: Montreal Canada
1960 BA Yeshiva University, New York
1961-62 Kibbutz etc. Israel
1963 Master of Library Science, Hebrew University, Jerusalem
1964-5 Israeli Army
1965-2005 Librarian, cataloger of MSS at the Institute of Microfilmed Hebrew Manuscripts in the Jewish National and University Library, Jerusalem (Director of the Institute since 1997).

Cataloguing Hebrew manuscripts requires a broad knowledge of the bibliography of Hebrew and general literature, as well as a keen and experienced eye to read and identify a wide variety of scripts and to date and localize each manuscript.

For over 40 years I have been examining and cataloguing Hebrew manuscripts. My experience has not been limited to one facet of Hebrew literature. The Institute of Microfilmed Hebrew Manuscripts has collected copies of Hebrew codices on all subjects studied by Jewish scholars over the past 1000 years, and these include Bible, Talmud, Halakha (ritual laws), kabbalah and liturgy as well as medieval philosophy, astronomy and medicine written originally in Hebrew or translated from Arabic or Latin. While I may not be an accomplished scholar in any one of these subjects I can rely on my vast experience to enable me to identify texts in all these fields even if, as is often the case, the manuscript is incomplete and lacks the name of the author and the title of the work. Few scholars or librarians have accumulated the experience I have cataloguing Hebrew manuscripts.