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Previously unknown medieval Jewish manuscripts turn up on antiques market

More than 200 Jewish medieval Jewish manuscripts have been discovered along the Silk Road in Afghanistan and are up for sale.

“For the first time we have concrete evidence of Jewish existence (in Afghanistan), not only in the material sense of tombstones or household artifacts, but documents that (tell us) about the spiritual world of the people who lived there 1,000 years ago,” says Haggai Ben-Shammai, academic director of the National Library of Israel in Jerusalem.

The documents are in the hands of several dealers — some in London, some in Geneva and some in Jerusalem. But scholars are eager to see them donated to libraries and museums.

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Story: Leslie Scivener, Toronto Star | Photo: Wikimedia Commons

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