Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Talmud sells for $9.3m

THE VALMADONNA LIBRARY: 16th-Century Talmud Sells for $9.3 Million at Sotheby’s. Sotheby’s set a new world auction record for any piece of Judaica on Tuesday in New York, when one of the finest copies of Daniel Bomberg’s Babylonian Talmud sold for $9.3 million According to Tablet Magazine, the buyer is Leon Black, a New York businessman, founder of private equity firm Apollo Global Management.

The extraordinary volume was purchased by Stephan Loewentheil for the 19th Century Rare Book & Photograph Shop. The Bomberg Talmud led the sale of a selection of extraordinary items from The Valmadonna Trust, which totaled $14.9 million and became the most valuable auction of Judaica ever held. Together with the auctions of Important Judaica and Israeli & International Art, Sotheby’s annual December sales of Judaica and Israeli Art totaled $22.6 million.

This is sad. Background on the breakup and auction of the Valmadonna Library is here and here and links. The Tablet article mentioned above is here.