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Bohak, Prolegomena

Bohak, Prolegomena

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 Prolegomena to the Study o the Jewish Magical Tradition
*
Gideon Bohak
Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel  gbohak@post.tau.ac.il 
 Abstract 
Rct yrs v s  sty rs  t sclrly trst  Jwsmgc. T prst ppr ss t t stc f wt s lry b, t xpl w furtr stuy f Jws mgcl txts  rtfctsmgt m mjr ctrbuts t t stuy f Jusm s  wl, t prv  bluprt fr furtr prgrss  ts fl. its m clms tt t umbr f ut  v ucrt prmry surcs frt stuy f Jws mgc s stggrg,  tt ts surcs mustsrv s t strtg pt fr y srus stuy f t Jws mgcltrt frm tquty t t twty-frst ctury. Suc  stuy must bt cmpr t Jws mgcl txts  prctcs f c strcl pr wt ts f t ctmprus -Jws wrl,  tustrc prcsss f crss-culturl ctcts  flucs,  cmprt Jws mgcl txts  prctcs f  pr wt ts f tr, s s t tct prcsss f r-Jws ctuty  trs-mss. Flly, suc  stuy must fls ut t plc f mgcl prc-tcs  prcttrs wt t Jws scty f ffrt prs, wt ffrt Jws cmmuts.
kywrs: jurts, mults, crss-culturl ctcts, xrcsm,
halakha
, Jusm, mgc, mgcl txts, mgcs, rbbs.
Currents in Biblical Research
© T autr(s), 2009. Rprts  Prmsss:ttp://www.sgpub.c.u/jurlsPrmsss.v Vl. 8.1: 107-150iSSn 1476-993X doi: 10.1177/1476993X09339445*
a rlr,  srtr, vrs f ts ppr ws publs  hbrw 
 JewishStudies
44 (2007): 9-36. T rsrc fr ts ppr ws supprt by t isrl SccFut (Grt n. 725/03).
 
108
Currents in Biblical Research 8.1 (2009)
 Introduction: The Academic Study o Jewish Magic
dspt sm prgrss  rct yrs, t cmc stuy f Jws mgcs stll  ts fcy. as  xmpl ut f my, lt m mt  bwc s t yt rcv y sclrly trtmt,  spt f ts pt-tl trst. it s cll ( hbrw)
 Practical Kabbalah, Medicines and Segulot, Written in the Hand o the Late Hakham Meir ben Izri, ca. 1896 
 (Mr 1998). it ws publs prvtly by dv Mr, w tus m publc  mul f mr Jws mgc wc   fu  s wm,  muscrpt cp  us by s grftr  kurst  tlt-tt ctury. T tr ls st  cpy, fr f crg, t Tlavv Uvrsty Lbrry,  ts s w i gt l f t. Ts s t  prprcmc t f t muscrpt  qust,  s t v ccm- p by tl ptgrps f t rgl muscrpt (fr  smlr publct, s ls Ytzy 1976). it s  lbr f lv,  ufrtutlys qut uslss frm  sctfc pt f vw, but t tr cul t vw ts, sc    ml  wc t bs  sctfc t f  mr cmpum f Jws mgc. h ls   cmc rsst tur t  rr t bt  tl lyss f t muscrpt’s ctts ts rltv sgfcc fr t stuy f t Jws mgcl trt s wl. it sms tt tus fr tr v b  rl ttmpts t publsmr Jws muscrpts f mgcl ctts  tr trty,  tumbr f cmc stus f Jws mgcl txts sts  vrs pr- prt t t umbr f muscrpts, wc my b fu  tr tu-ss  lbrrs  isrl, eurp, t US  lswr, s wll s  ts f umrus prvt vuls. (W i tll rry isrls tti m trst  Jws mgc, ty ft strt tllg m f t mu-scrpts ty  rt r bugt,  w i tc smrs  Jwsmgcl txts, sm f t stuts  up wrg  t muscrpts ttly   tr ttcs fr  grt r tw). T t, tr s b rl ttmpt t mp ts w fl, r t ffr v t mst bsc strclsurvy f t Jws mgcl txts f ll prs (cf. d 1972).Ts sclrly glct f muc f t Jws mgcl trt s tu t sm tccl ffcults r t  lc f pprprt surcs (wcr bt umrus  rly vlbl), but t  clr lgcl bswc ms ts txts  rtfcts sm uwrty f srus stuy.Utl rctly, mst sclrs  Jws Stus wr qut wllg t ccptBlm’s fmus clm, ‘Tr s  vt  Jcb,   ugury isrl’ (num. 23.23),  t gr t xstc f  rc  vrgt
 
 
B
ohak
 
 Prolegomena
109
Jws mgcl trt wc s ctuusly cumt t lst frmlt tquty  ll t wy t t twty-frst ctury. T b sur, smttmpts wr m t t, r t lst scrb, Jws mgcl mu-scrpts (Stscr 1862; Gllcz 1903  1914; Cmpbll Tmp-s 1906–1908), t lyz Jws mgcl prctcs (dcs 1913 d 1963),  v t wrt mr systmtc survys f ct r m-vl Jws mgc (s sp. Blu 1898  Trctbrg 1939, t wc my ls  Mtgmry 1913), but ts ttmpts wr fw fr btw,   t l t  sust sclrly stuy f t Jwsmgcl trt.oly  t lst grt c w s  crt sft  sclrs’ tttutwrs Jws mgc, s my b s frm tw rlt vlpmts. ot  ,  fw mprtt sts f Jws mgcl txts v flly b t  publs— r  my t spclly Mrg-lt’s grubrg publct f 
Sepher Ha-Razim
(s Mrglt1966, Fr 2006,  Rbgr  Scäfr 2009), Byu’s lgtylyss f ms Sss 290 (Byu 1972), Sclm’s t f t
 Havdala de-Rabbi Akiba
(Sclm 1980–81), Tcc’s t f t
 Pishrade-Rabbi Hanina ben Dosa
(Tcc 1986, wc i p t rplc wt  bttr t), hrr’s w t f t
Sword o Moses
(hrr 1997,t b cmpr wt Gstr 1896), Wry’s t f sm vrss f 
Sepher Ha-Yashar 

Sepher Ha-Malbush
(Wry 2004),  Rbgrsfrtcmg t f 
Shimmush Tehillim
(Rbgr 2009). i t tts mr ‘ltrry’ bs f mgc,  my ls mt Jsp nv Sul S’s xcllt publcts f mtl-plt mults, Msp-tm ctt bwls,  Gz mgcl txts (nv  S1985  1993), t publct f mr Gz mgcl txts by Scff-m  Swrtz (1992)  by Scäfr  S (1994–frtcmg), t publct f umrus ctt bwls, mst tbly by Sgl(2000), Lv (2003),  Müllr-ksslr (2005). all ts publc-ts lry m  mprtt ctrbut t ur wlg f ct mvl Jws mgc, but v r t umbr f w but stllupubls mgcl txts  rtfcts s muc grtr t t umbr f t publs s. a w w mv t ltr prs, w c s ttlmst tg s b  tus fr, but fr  fw publcts f mrJws mults (.g., Spr 1904; Cswcz 1916  1917; Scrr1966; Scr 1971; Bwm 1976–77; Rs-ayl 1990; dvs Frl 1995; Jss 2004; Lm  Swrzfucs 2006),  fw survysf prt Jws mgcl txts (Mtrs 1997  2005),  prlmryscrpts f sm f t my mvl  mr muscrpts f 

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