JudaicaAuthor: Eva-Maria Jansson
The Royal Library has rich collections of Judaica (materials on Jewish Studies in Western languages) and Hebraica (material written in Hebrew scripts). Already in the Renaissance, the Jewish roots of Christianity led to the acquisition of manuscripts, and later, printed works, for the royal collections. In the 17th century, and particularly in the 18th century, the collections were expanded by acquisitions in Denmark, but also abroad, as Danish explorers bought manuscripts and printed works. In the 19th century, the growing discipline of Jewish Studies and the emergence of Biblical criticism led to further expansion of the collections. A pivotal moment came in 1932, with the acquistion of professor, Rabbi David Simonsen's private library and archives.
Materials in Hebrew, Aramaic, Yiddish, Ladino etc., are all included in the Judaica Collection, whereas materials in Western languages in general belong to other collections in the National Library and Copenhagen University Library. Regardless of language, all printed and digital materials (with the excption of the Hebrew incunables) should be searched for and ordered in the online catalogue REX, for use in reading rooms or for lending. Manuscripts and early printed works can only be examined by agreement.
The Judaica Collection: Digital collections
The David Simonsen Archives
The archives of correspondence of Chief Rabbi David Simonsen (1853-1932) contains app. 29,000 letters to and from some 5,000 correspondents, and mirrors his scholarly network, as well as his deep involvement in different humanitarian efforts and organisations during, and after, World War I. App. 30% (A-G) has so far been made available online (A-G).
The David Simonsen Manuscripts
The manuscripts collected by David Simonsen (to date 194 items) testifies to his wide range of interests, and holds manuscripts in 15 languages from 20 countries.
Judaica Collection: Manuscripts
Other manuscripts from the collection, the majority acquisitions made by the scientific expedition ‘the Arabian journey’ (1761-1767).
Judaica Collection: Early Prints
Some of the rarities in the collection.
Cod. Heb. 37: ‘The Copenhagen Maimonides’
Moreh Nevukhim (Barcelona, 1347-48