Lot : 22

Tzuras Habayis
by the Tosfos Yom Tov 
Including the map of the Third Beis Hamikdash
First Edition. Prague, 1602

Start price: $50,000
Est. Price: $80,000 - $120,000
Tzuras Habayis
by the Tosfos Yom Tov 
Including the map of the Third Beis Hamikdash
First Edition. Prague, 1602
Elaborate description of the Third Beis Hamikdash based on the prophecy of Yechezkel Hanavi by Rabbi Yom Tov Lipman Halevi Heller, author of the Tosfos Yom Tov, with a detailed diagram of the future Beis Hamikdash.
This original edition of Tzuras Habayis presents a beautiful sefer, complete with the large diagram of the future Beis Hamikdash which was printed together with the sefer.
This map is extremely rare, it is missing from nearly all known copies.
The diagram is printed on an extra-large leaf measuring 55 cm (height) x 39.5 cm (width).
The diagram was printed based on the illustration and drawings by Tosfos Yom Tov himself. He mentions this drawing in his preface: “And I saw that it is beneficial to present the shape as a general drawing to facilitate memory…the general shape of the entire building.”
The Tosfos Yom Tov inscribes in the margins of the leaf: “ The words of the humblest of all in Israel, Yom Tov who is called Lipman son of Rabbi Nosson zt”l Heller of the holy congregation of Wallerstein, here in the holy congregation of Prague”. (The printer’s name appears on the bottom line.)
The Tosfos Yom Tov also mentions this drawing in his preface to Maadanei Melech: “With the help of Hashem, I created a tangible image together with the book, in which I described to all scholars who are wise, and I named it Tzuras Habayis [which] was printed here in Prague in the year 5362 (1602).”
The illustration is a detailed depiction of the form of the future Beis Hamikdash, including its walls, main hall, courtyard, chambers and vessels.
The center of the leaf encompasses three drawings: A drawing of Yechezkel Hanavi; a drawing of the angel that revealed itself to Yechezkel to describe the image of the Third Beis Hamikdash (see Yechezkel Ch. 40-43); and on the right side of the leaf, a drawing of a compass inside the palm of a hand. On the margins of this leaf, the Tosfos Yom Tov explains that the compass serves as a scale for the learners’ use. “We placed a compass in a hand, where the distance is a scale of 6 amos, and based on this, all the measurements can be estimated.”
The body of the sefer also includes two large illustrated diagrams.
Rabbi Yom Tov Lipman Halevi Heller (1579-1644) is renowned for his landmark commentary on the Mishnah, Tosfos Yom Tov. He authored the present work Tzuras Habayis in 1602 when he was just 23 years old.
Tzuras Habayis was universally accepted as a fundamental tool and aid to the study of the Beis Hamikdash. Any subsequent author who compiled works on this subject referenced the Tosfos Yom Tov’s famous work.
In his preface to Tzuras Habayis, the author writes that “one who engages in the [study of the structure] of the Beis Hamikdash will merit participating in its construction in the future.”
The right corner of the title page bears the signature of the owner, albeit the text is slightly cropped: “Leib Levi He[ller].” its likely that this is the signature of the Tosfos Yom Tov’s son whom he refers to as “Rebbi Leiva” (Tosfos Yom Tov on Mikvaos 9:3; Megillas Eichah Letter 21) and was apparently the namesake of the Tosfos Yom Tov’s rebbi and mentor, the Maharal of Prague.
Prague, 1602. First Edition. Page Count: [36] leaves + [1] very large leaf (55×39.5 cm).
Condition: Attractive copy. Right margins of the bottom two-thirds of the diagram and other tears and holes (mostly in the blank parts of the diagram) were restored. New leather binding.
Provenance: William Gross Collection, Tel aviv
p.s. the image of the model of bais hamikdash is for illustration purposes only, and it was taken from the Second Beis HaMikdash.
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