January 16th, 2003
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The Railroad Under Mount Gerizim
Article by Shomron. Photo by Alvin B. Garley- 1930
The first railway in the holy land was constructed between Jerusalem and Jaffa by a French concessionary company in 1892. The line was further developed by the Turks with help from the Germans in 1914 and by the British in 1920. During World War I, the Turks extended the line southward from Afulah through Jenin to Nablus.
Most likely the railway was a convenient transportation for the pilgrims
of the Samaritan Passover. Moses Gaster most likely used this rail line as
well as many others. I sent an e-mail with the photo to Israel Railways
and received a response back from Paul Cotterell:
APentateuch in Wyoming
by Anne Marie Lane
In the American Heritage Center of the university of Wyoming, USA there is in the Toppan Rare Books Library, a Manuscript of the Pentateuch, apparently written in Samaritan characters.
What a pleasant surprise to read an email from Shomron. It is the first inquiry I have had (in my 9 years here) about the Samaritan Pentateuch. It is a special favorite that I bring out for presentations on book history and books of different religions. It is small, a hand-held version, just over 4 inches high and 3 inches wide, 400 pages long, hand-sewn with red thread, and has the traditional "flap" binding. The leather is a light to medium brown (goatskin?), and has an incised cross (like this: X ) on both the front and back, each within a panel of incised lines. The spine has 21 horizontal lines inscribed from top to bottom. The paper is very thin, almost like modern airmail paper, and is a cream color. The ink is extremely black, and the whole book is handwritten in a remarkably tiny script.
I do not know the conditions of the book ending up here in Wyoming, except to say that the manual cataloging record I have (the book is not cataloged online yet) says it was acquired in 1967 as a William Fitzhugh gift. Dr. Fitzhugh (of California) donated both books and money to buy other books, so I'm not sure if he himself had bought it while traveling somewhere. The cataloging record also notes that it is from "Nablus, Palestine, circa 1750," so it is quite old.
Anne Marie Lane
Samaritan Music in America in 2003
A. B. News Services
Further steps have been made to arrange a successful journey of performances of the Samaritan Israelite Music Ensemble of 20 singers of both Samaritan Communities in
Library News: Books and Articles
Conntinuation of the Samaritan Chronicle of Abu L'Fath
by Milka Levy-Rubin Hardcover Book
Darwin Pr; ISBN: 0878501363; (October 2002)At Amazon.com for $35.00 plus shipping.
Rare Arabic Book
Book ID: 045867
parties can contact:
Richard Owen Roberts Booksellers &
A COMMENTARY ON THE APOCALYPSE,CRITICAL AND HISTORICAL
BY THE REV. E. B. ELLIOTT, A. M.
I quote this from a Paper on the subject, in the Christian Observer for May 1802, p. 287; and, in further illustration of the uniformity of the Hebrew copies in respect of their numerals, may add that the Chaldee Paraphrase of Onkelos, written about the time of Christ, agrees with the Hebrew chronologies, -- that the same are recognized in the two Talmuds, -- and that Dr. Wolff informs me that "in the ancient manuscripts which he saw at Bokhara, the chronological notices of the length of lives both of the antediluvian and the postdiluvian patriarchs were exactly according to the received Hebrew text, though the letters of the manuscripts resembled Samaritan."
You can readDr. Wolff's Journey to Bokhara. The Living Age, vol. 6, issue 67 (August 23, 1845). http://cdl.library.cornell.edu/moa/ This is a good book for discovery Wolff's thoughts on the ten lost tribes of Israel.
"Palestine's Rural Economy, 1917 - 1939"
By Kenneth W. Stein
'Devastation caused by the fighting in Palestine during World War I adversely affected the rural economy and the peasants' financial situation. The economy in general suffered from a severe decline in currency value and available capital. The inhabitants of Gaza bartered pottery for cereal from northern Palestine. The more densely populated area from Nablus to Jerusalem barely provided enough agricultural produce for local consumption. Administratively, the headlong Turkish retreat brought about the destruction of sub-district land registers and agricultural bank records, leaving virtually no complete and accurate picture of land rights......'
'In 1913, there was a serious epidemic which reduced sheep flocks, cattle stock, and the number of transport oxen. The Turks commandeered huge camel stocks in 1915 and 1916. In 1916 they requisitioned large flocks of sheep near Beersheba and in 1917 the hill regions from Nablus to Hebron suffered a scarcity of sheep ....'
'From 1931 through 1933 there was a 37% drop in domestic wheat output in Palestine. This forced the administration to issue loans for seed, plow oxen, and forage, and to remit the tithe from 1931 through 1934. In Jenin in early 1934, Arab journalists reported that 60% of the stock and 90% of the offspring perished due to scanty grazing, inclement weather, and drought; in Nablus the cold weather and lack of pasturage took their toll of 60% of the remaining stock. This resulted in the government's remission of the animal tax. In the early 1930s there was a steady decline in the price of domestic wheat and cereals, primarily because of the dumping of Syrian wheat on the Palestine market and worldwide overproduction.'
(This time period must have been very hard on the Samaritans. Shomron)
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