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Statut de Kalisz

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Statut de Kalisz

BOOKS. Timeless and vibrant illumination of the Jewish Magna Carta.

Price: $45,000

The Statut De Kalisz [Statute of Kalisz]—an interpretation of a 13th century manuscript commemorating the Golden Age and early modern liberties of Polish Jewry—is Szyk’s single most important historic work. This document has been described as the “Magna Carta of the Jews”, detailing the rights and privileges granted them in the year 1264 in the Polish town of Kalisz, by Boleslaw the Pious, Grand Duke of Poland. Through Szyk's masterful illustrations in the style of 16th century miniaturist illumination, the mutual beneficial and friendly relationship between the Poles and the Jews throughout the Middle Ages is vibrantly revealed.

Szyk translated the Statute into seven languages—Polish, English, German, Italian, Spanish, Hebrew, and Yiddish—to remind the reader that the universal message of the Polish Statute ought to be embraced by the entire community of nations.

Illumination and miniature ornamentation by Arthur Szyk. Printed in Munich by E. Bruckmann for Editions de la “Table Ronde” Paris, 1932. Folio, 47 leaves. Parallel Latin and French text. Original red cloth case with embossed gilt Polish eagle.

This portfolio is truly rare. The Justification page indicates 500 copies of this portfolio were printed, though only 50 were believed to have survived the bombing of a warehouse in Warsaw where they were stored during World War II. We have been able to locate fewer than 20 complete copies known worldwide. No copies in the British Library, Bibliothèque Nationale, nor The Library of Congress.

Portfolio with Slipcase