In the city of Tiberias on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee around the year 930 A.D., the swift scribe Shlomo Ben-Buya’a under the direction of the scholar Aaron Ben-Asher created a perfect copy of 24 books of the Old Testament in Hebrew.
The codex, or book, represented generations of study and was meant to be a reference for scholars with thousands of tiny notes in the margins. It came to be known as the Aleppo Codex, the Crown of Aleppo or simply the Crown.
According to Matti Friedman, author of “The Aleppo Codex,” it is “the singular and authoritative version, for believing Jews, of God’s word as it was sent into the world of men in their language.”
Friedman, a writer for the Times of Israel, tells the 1,000-year story of the ancient Bible by following its trail from Palestine to Egypt to Syria and finally to Israel. The book centers around two mysteries — how it ended up where it did and what happened to 40 percent of the pages that are now missing.
The Advocate (Baton Rouge), June 23, 2012
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