A History of Histories—of Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Exchange

A.S. Yahuda and the International Trade of Antiquities, Rare Books, and Manuscripts, 1902-1944

This article provides the first attempt to study comprehensively the influential involvement of the scholar Abraham S. Yahuda (1877-1951) in the international trade of manuscripts and cultural objects. Buoyed by his position as the chair of Rabbinic Language and Literature at the University of Madrid in 1915, Yahuda legitimized and deepened his role in the trade of material objects; his ongoing trade of such objects, in turn, helped to legitimize his scholarship, which continued well after he left Spain. Through a study of previously unpublished files, the piece points to the overlapping of knowledge, power, and the acquiring of antiquities and other objects during the first half of the twentieth century.

issue 18 / December 2020 by Allyson Gonzalez