A Judaeo-Arabic Paraphrase of Ibn Gabirol’s Keter Malkhut Shlomo ibn Gabirol’s Keter Malkhut (literally ‘A Crown of Kingship’) is certainly one of the greatest of Hebrew liturgical compositions. As a devotional opus, it won for itself a place in the rite of nearly all the Jewish communities. Moreover, just like other masterpieces of world literature, it has been translated into a variety of languages. 1 In this miscellaneum I would like to describe a medieval translation of Keter Malkhut which, to the best of my knowledge, has not been noted anywhere in scholarly literature. The language of the translation is Judaeo-Arabic. It is found in three manuscripts, two of which are found in the Russian State Library in Moscow (Ginzburg 364, fols 265a-276b and Ginzburg 1029, 24 folios), while the third is found in the private collection of Meir Benayahu of Jerusalem, and listed as Gimmel 77, fols 30a-33a. All three manuscripts are in late (post-seventeenth-century) eastern hands. However, as we shall see, the translation was executed either in Spain or in North Africa. The name of the translator is not displayed in any of the manuscripts. I can supply, however, some information about his other accomplish- ments.
Zutot – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2003
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