Saturday, December 24, 2005

Judaism: A New Hebrew Bible: the Aleppo Codex - Keter Yerushalayim/Jerusalem Crown: The Bible of the Hebrew - Book ReviewThe Ben Chayyim Masoretic tex

The Keter Yerushalayim was introduced to the public at the Jerusalem Book Fair two years ago. The Jerusalem Report ran a short and very positive review the next month. Beyond that, little has been said about this impressive new Tanakh in the English language press. Although the Keter can be found in nearly every bookstore in Israel, it is still hard to locate in the United States. This is unfortunate as this Tanakh is an outstanding achievement.

The Keter Yerushalayim is a Hebrew Tanakh without an English translation. What then would be the appeal to the English-speaking reader? The answer is two-fold.

Firstly, the Keter is an attractive book. The typography and page layout is open and inviting. It is an advance over the Koren Tanakh which appeared in the 1960s, and superceded the many different Tanakhim that used the same nineteenth-century version of the Biblia Hebraica typography--the Hertz Chumash, for instance. While the Koren's modern typography was a major improvement and the layout was pleasant, it has a certain blandness to it that Keter Yerushalayim has overcome. For the Keter an entirely new typeface was developed by Zvi Narkiss based on the calligraphic script used in the Aleppo Codex.


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