Uppsala University Library

Judaica

The books and pamphlets on Jewish culture and history (Judaica) in Uppsala University Library number almost 30,000. Approximately two thirds of them are found in C. Vilh. Jacobowsky's Judaica Collection.

During the whole of its history, the University Library has acquired Hebrew and Jewish literature to support humanistic and theological studies. Around the year 1700 a remarkable number of important works were acquired at Amsterdam, Hamburg and London, first and foremost by Erik Benzelius, the younger. These works were described and registered by Hans Joachim Schoeps in Nordisk tidskrift för bok- och biblioteksväsen in 1946.

Judaica

In 1966 Uppsala University Library was able to acquire a large and important collection, C. Vilh. Jacobowsky's Judaica Collection, containing approximately 13,000 works, then one of the largest private collections of Jewish history and culture in Europe. For about 70 years, the historian and librarian Vilhelm Jacobowsky, (1896-1986), collected literature on Jewish culture in many different areas: religion, history, fiction, art, arts and crafts, history of books, philology, memoirs, biographies, genealogy, and company history. Every age and geographical area is represented in the collection, even if the emphasis is on European and North American Judaism. Of most value to researchers are the numerous works on Jewish groups and congregations in every country. There are more than 900 books and pamphlets on the history of the Jews in Sweden alone. Memoirs and biographies number about 800, the numerous family chronicles not included. The significance of the collection lies as much in the large number of pamphlets of the kind that are often difficult to get hold of, as in more comprehensive works.

Thanks to donations and grants from Dr. Aron Neuman and Riksbankens Jubileumsfond the Library has been able to register all its holdings on Jewish culture, history and society in its online catalogues. They are now accessible in the national library catalogue Libris and in our search tool.

Further reading

  • Hans-Joachim Schoeps, Hebräische Erstdrucke vor 1600 in der Universitätsbibliothek Uppsala. (I: Nordisk tidskrift för bok- och biblioteksväsen, 1946(33):4, s. 176-195)   
  • Hans Nordesjö, The Jacobowsky Collection of Judaica at Uppsala University Library. (I: Serving the Scholarly Community: Essays on Tradition and Change in Research Libraries Presented to Thomas Tottie on July 3rd, 1995. - Uppsala, 1995. - S. 205-212)

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