What is Judaica Silver?
Judaica silver is any piece of silverware that has been created to be used in any type of Jewish ceremony, ritual, or in affiliation with any aspect of Jewish religious life and customs.
Judaica silver is - by nature of the precious qualities of silver itself – often an item which is integral to the ceremony or proceedings which is was created for.
It is believed by those of the Jewish faith that to use an especially beautiful object while celebrating or performing a mitzvah is a method of showing your praise to God and honouring his commandments.
Because of this, Judaism has a long, ancient tradition of appointing craftsmen and silversmiths to create these important and crucially beautiful objects with which to praise God and demonstrate their faith.
History of Judaica Silver
Judaica silver is rare and significant in the world of silverware for the reasons that all. Items of Judaica are so revered – by nature of the history of the people of The Jewish faith – their craftsmanship, skills and successes were often diminished, interrupted or, indeed, stolen across the world.
Racism and prejudice played a major role in the relatively recent history of the Jewish faith, and with Judaica silver being as precious and naturally valuable as it is, this particular type of artisan creation was highly desirable- as was the wealth that the companies who created these pieces accrued.
Before the advent of a more civilised and lawful society, Judaica silver was frequently forcibly taken from the members of the Jewish community who either owned or had created it.
Silver was the preferred material for making ceremonial Judaica items such as Hanukkah lamps and Kiddush cups. Silver has been used in the creation of religious objects for thousands of years, however for a myriad of historical and social reasons, little of the Judaica silver that was created before the sixteenth century has survived.
One of the forms of persecution that the Judaica silversmiths suffered was that they were not allowed to join the silver or goldsmiths guilds within Europe, this meant that Non- Jewish makers were often creating the ceremonial silver for Jewish families and synagogues. A result of this is that there were frequently mistakes made concerning the Hebrew inscriptions which would feature on the Judaica silver.
The highly covetable nature of Judaica silver is also contributed by the incredibly high level of skill and craftsmanship that went into these pieces. Their highs decorative form makes them unique and desirable, and beyond the elemental worth of their base metal content, their beauty gives rise to a further demand for these pieces.