This database contains nearly 800 very valuable Yiddish books printed in Hebrew letters in West, Central and East Europe. It is outstanding because of its variety of Yiddish dialects and themes and the impressive number of extremely rare books including several unique editions.
Publication dates range from the middle of the 16th century to the beginning of the 20th century, the earliest print being a Hebrew Bible of 1560 from Cremona, followed by a print from Basel from 1583.
The collection contains the whole spectrum of Yiddish texts, including a large number of women's bibles (Tse'na Re'ena), liturgy, medical guide books, science and education, works on religious customs (Minhagim), legends, historical chronicles and translations of well known tales like "A Thousand and one Nights".
The prints of the 19th and early 20th centuries comprise the classical Jewish fiction of famous East European Yiddish authors like Leib Perez, Sholem Aleichem and Shalom Ash. The University Library Frankfurt am Main holds thousands of additional Yiddish titles that can be ordered through the online-catalog and continues to acquire Yiddish books as part of the special collection Jewish studies.
The digitization of the historic collection was funded by the German Research Foundation.