Wednesday, July 23, 2014

A List of Some JTS Library Resources Relating to the Yemenite Jewish Community

-          Gimani, Aharon.
Bene Teman : Meḥḳarim be-yahadut Teman u-morashtah
[Lod : Orot Yahadut ha-Magrab : Merkaz Dahan, 711, 2011]
DS135.Y4 G55 2011

-          Mi-Teman le-Yiśraʼel : tarbut, lashon, sifrut, ḥinukh ; hagut u-meḥḳar
[Yiśraʼel : E. Ḳapaḥ, 2011]
DS113.8.Y4 M58 2011

-          Ben-Daṿid, Aharon.
Sefer ha-maʻaśim : maʻaśim me-ḥaye Yehude tsefon Teman ...
[Ḳiryat ʻEḳron : Hotsaʼat "Ahavat Teman", (2010)]
DS135.Y4 B452 2010

-          Mizraḥi, Avshalom.
Mor u-levonah : orḥot ḥayim, beriʼut u-refuʼah be-mishkenot Yehude Teman
[R.G. (z.o., Ramat Gan) : Hotsaʼat Foḳus ; : Netanyah : ha-Agudah le-ṭipuaḥ ḥevrah ṿe-tarbut, c2007]
R133 .M59 2007

-          Muchawsky-Schnapper, Ester.
The Yemenites : two thousand years of Jewish culture
[Jerusalem : The Israel Museum, 2000]
Oversize DS135.Y4 M82 2000

-          Judaeo-Yemenite studies : proceedings of the second international congress
[Princeton, N.J. : Institute of Semitic Studies, 1999]
DS135.Y4 J83 1999

-          Tobi, Joseph.
The Jews of Yemen : studies in their history and culture
[Leiden ; Boston : Brill, 1999]
DS135.Y4 T693 1999

-          Tawil, Hayim.
Operation Esther : opening the door for the last Jews of Yemen
[New York : Belkis Press, 1998]
DS135.Y4 T38 1998

-          The Jews of Aden
[(London) : London Museum of Jewish Life, c1991]
OVERSIZE DS135.Y4 J48 1991

-          Nini, Yehuda.
The Jews of the Yemen, 1800-1914
[Chur : Philadelphia : Harwood Academic Publishers, c1991]
DS135.Y4 N5213 1991

-          Gold, Sharlya.
The answered prayer, and other Yemenite folktales
[Philadelphia : Jewish Publication Society, 1990]
Educational Resource Center PZ8.1.G58 An 1990

-          Ahroni, Reuben.
Yemenite Jewry : origins, culture, and literature
[Bloomington : Indiana University Press, c1986]
DS135.Y4 A46 1986

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Converting between Hebrew and Gregorian Years

How does one calculate the Gregorian year from the Hebrew year (and the reverse)?

To calculate the Gregorian year from the Hebrew year, convert the Hebrew letters to numerals and add the number 1240 to that result. For the reverse, subtract the number 1240 from the Gregorian year and then convert the numerals to Hebrew letters. For a chart to convert the Hebrew alphabet to numbers, see here. If you are given the Hebrew year in numerals (e.g. 5774), exclude 5,000 in your calculation (see below) and add 1240 to the remaining numerals (e.g. 774). 

Some examples:

1. Hebrew year: תרכד
In numerals: 
    ת is 400
    ר is 200
    כ is 20
     ד is 4
Sum of numerals: 400 + 200 + 20 + 4 =624 (The year תרכד actually is the year 5624, but the 5,000 is left off for the purposes of the calculation and is assumed). 
Add 624 to 1240: 624 + 1240 = 1864

2. English year: 2011
Subtract 1240: 2011 - 1240 = 771 (The year actually is 5771, but the 5,000 is assumed). 
Convert to Hebrew letters: There is no Hebrew letter with the numerical equivalent as high as 700, but 700 is 400 + 300, ת and ש.
70 = ע
1 = א
Result: תשעא

From the time between the Hebrew New Year in the Fall to the Gregorian New Year in the Winter, the year is off by one, so this device is not always exact unless you know the month. This device generally though often proves helpful to librarians, who typically need to calculate the particular year in which a book was printed. 

The JTS Library has many books on the topic of the Jewish calendar. For example, Judaism, Mathematics, and the Hebrew Calendar, by Hyman Gabai, presents a comprehensive, in depth analysis of the Hebrew calendar. The Jewish Calendar, by Rabbi David Feinstein, also offers a good overview of the calendar and Jewish holidays, as well as a section titled "Basic rules of calendar-based liturgies." Hebrew and Solar Calendar Every Day for 200 Years, by Victor E. Levy, and The Comprehensive Hebrew Calendar, by Arthur Spier, offer conversion charts and introductory explanations of the calendar system. Calendrical Calculations, by Edward M. Reingold, provides a mathematical explanation of the Julian, Gregorian, Jewish, and Muslim calendars. For a historical perspective, consult the book Palaces of Time: Jewish Calendar and Culture in Early Modern Europe, by Elisheva Carlebach.