From Lublin to Dublin: Jewish Books in Marsh’s Library

Our exhibition, ‘From Lublin to Dublin (by way of Amsterdam)’,  displays a small number of the Jewish books  in Marsh’s Library. It has been extended until March 2015.

The founder of the Library, Narcissus Marsh, taught Hebrew in Oxford, before he came to Dublin in 1679.  He continued to buy books in Hebrew and Yiddish during his time in Ireland.  Most of these books were printed in Amsterdam, which was then the centre of the Jewish book trade.

Narcissus Marsh’s personal library testifies to his engagement with Jewish history and culture, and to the existence of a small group of men in Ireland who had similar interests.

The collection also sheds light on the small Jewish community in Dublin in the early eighteenth century. An inscription in one book shows that it was originally owned by members of the Ben Gedalya family, who had travelled to Dublin from Lublin in present-day Poland.

 The exhibition has been curated by Professor Shlomo Berger of the University of Amsterdam, an expert in Jewish history between 1500 and 1800. His essay and the list of items on exhibition are available for download.

Marsh’s Library hopes to raise funds to host a larger exhibition in 2016 which will display our range of Jewish books printed across early-modern Europe. This exhibition will shed new light on the long-standing presence of Jewish communities in Dublin and Cork. For further details, contact keeper@marshlibrary.ie

Exhibition Leaflet 'From Lublin to Dublin'
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