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The Chafetz Project - Hanukkat HaBayit

    Hanukkat HaBayit (חנוכת הבית) (or Dedication of The House), by Moshe Chafetz, details the design of the Second Temple (Solomon's Temple) in Jerusalem, and its utensils including the Menorah.

    Published Edition

    Book Details

    • 58 sections describe various parts of the Temple (Menorah, Altar, Holy of Holies, the Gates, etc.), in alphabetical order
    • 19 diagrams, including a (now rare) foldout plan diagram indicating each of the 58 sections
    • JTS library has a 1691 author's manuscript, handwritten, with many corrections used in print edition, earlier versions of drawings, the main drawing small on a page near the front, many slips of paper with notes throughout, no glossary
    • 52 pages (each represents two facing pages) plus introduction and glossary
    • The introduction, by Chafetz, includes pages of verse in praise of the work from five Italian rabbis
    • After the index is verse from R. Moses Marri
    • Sample page (PDF)

    Introduction

    Virtual Judaica describes the book, including:

    • 'The title page states that [it] is an explanation of the shape and structure of the destroyed Temple (bayit), in general and in its specifications, as set forth by early sages, to accumulate "food to revive the soul" (Lamentations 1:11) for those "who sanctify themselves and purify themselves" (Isaiah 66:17) on the topics requiring explanation, and it will be "for them a little sanctuary" (Ezekiel 11:16) "to revive their souls" (Lamentations 1:19).'

    Online Citations

    • Overviewed in Judaic Treasures of the Library of Congress: Holy Jerusalem
       
      Describes the book, including that all illustrations are engraved illustrations added after publication. (Since there's space for them, and the author's manuscript includes drafts of them, this seems by design and not a later notion.) Includes graphic of the book's pullout map of the Temple
      Interesting fact: One of the copies we have is missing one of the illustrations, supporting the notion that they were added separately.
       
    • Mentioned in Introduction to the Beis Ha'Mikdash (Dafyomi)
       
      Discussion of several scholars' Temple diagrams; Chafetz's listed as "CHB2." Several discussions of differences between CHB2 and other diagrams.

    Some information repurposed from Encyclopedia Judaica

    (Pullout Map of the
    Second Temple)

    The Chafetz Project

    We have two copies, including one with the pullout map, as well as photocopies and microfilm of Hanukkat haBayit, obtained from Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

    Got Information?

    Any information about this book or Moshe Chafetz is greatly appreciated; in particular, available copies or existing translations.

    Contact me at djbrook@sbcglobal.net.

    Copyright Doug Brook. All rights reserved.