The oldest known most complete edition of the Hebrew Bible arrived in Israel on Thursday and will be displayed at the ANU Museum in Tel Aviv, the museum announced on Thursday.

The Codex Sassoon, as it is known, is to be displayed permanently at ANU from Wednesday, the museum said, describing it as “a rare and valuable testimony to the history of the biblical text.”

It was bought at auction in New York for $38 million in May and donated to the museum. The price makes the Bible weighing 12 kilograms the most expensive Jewish manuscript in history. It contains handwritten signs indicating how it is to be read aloud.

The traditions for reading aloud from the Torah were handed down orally until the seventh century. Then instructions were provided via diacritical and cantillation marks, and notes were added in the margins and between the columns. These notes are known as Masoretic notes, and the Codex Sassoon has an abundance of them.

Three books in the world are recognized as complete Masoretic texts: the Aleppo Codex on display at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, the Leningrad Codex on display at a museum in St. Petersburg, and the Codex Sassoon.

The Codex was created more than 1,100 years ago in the region around where Israel and Syria lie today, according to the museum.

The document offers a critical link bridging Jewish oral tradition to the modern Hebrew Bible.

It then disappeared for centuries until the collector David Solomon Sassoon bought it for $425 in 1929 and had it rebound. Since then, it has been in private possession.

Original Article – The Oldest Most Complete Hebrew Bible Arrives in Israel – Israel News –