Herlingen's Seder Haggadah to meet $300,000 estimate?

A rare copy of a Seder Haggadah Shel Pesach manuscript by Aaron Wolf Herlingen will be the star of Skinner's auction of Fine Judaica on October 3. The volume carries an estimate of $200,000-300,000 and dates to 1735.

The Haggadah is a Jewish text that codifies the order of the Passover Seder - a ritual feast marking the beginning of the Passover celebrations.

Haggadah Seder Skinner
The volume dates to 1735

Herlingen was one of the finest Jewish calligraphers of the 18th century, although his body of work only comprises around 50 examples. In 2004 a book attributed to him that contained prayers for the Sabbath sold for $36,000 against an estimate of $30,000-35,000 at Sotheby's in New York.

An untitled sculpture by noted Jewish artist Ilya Schor is also offered with a valuation of $10,000-15,000. The work dates to around the 1950s and includes all the hallmarks of his style - monolithic, intricately constructed figures fashioned of brass and copper.

Fleeing the war raging in Europe, Schor migrated with his wife Reisa to New York in 1941, where they worked as jewellers and designers of Judaica.

Alongside their other work, however, they also created abstract art that straddled the gulf between explicit expressions of their Jewish identity and the compulsion, felt by many Jews arriving in America during that era, to omit those references in a cultural climate that was largely anti-Semitic.

In 2005 a rare silver Mezzuzah case made by Ilya Schor circa 1960 sold for $30,000 at Sotheby's New York against an estimate of $10,000-15,000.

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