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Page 38 - An excerpt from the annual report of the Imperial Public Library in St. Petersburg, 1862

In the annual report of the Imperial Public Library in St. Petersburg, from the year 1862 we can read this article:

In the year 1862 the works of Abraham Firkovich were acquired. This purchase caused enthusiasm among experts, this purchase was positively evaluated by the famous palaeographer and publisher of biblical texts - Professor Konstantin von Tischendorf from Leipzig and also by the academic Dorn, the chief librarian Bekker. The professor of St. Petersburg University, semitologist Khvolson also positively evaluated this purchase at the Russian Academy of Sciences.


Hakham Abraham ben Samuel Firkovich

Experts appreciated the high scientific value of the collection. According to the opinions of scientists, there is no similar collection.

The collection includes:

47 Torah scrolls made of the skin and parchment

77 books of Holy Scriptures

23 translations of the Holy Scriptures into various Eastern languages

272 writings of Karaite scholars

523 writings of Rabbanites.  

250 various decrees, historical letters and articles

300 documents relating to the Karaites of the Russian Empire

722 Hebrew inscriptions from Karaite tombstones from Crimea, the Caucasus , the Holy Land and other places recorded by photography or by using fingerprints on paper.


It would be very helpful if some Karaite youths dedicated to the study of Karaite literature and became a member of the Academy of Eastern languages, the Arabic, Khaldean and Hebrew department. It would be of great service for his people and would help the revival of Karaism. It would shed a new light on Karaite literature and would recover the ideas of the Karaite  scholars of Egypt, the Holy Land and Syria (who wrote in the Arabic and Khaldean languages). From the above mentioned text it is obvious how much sources there are relating to the Karaites that are available in the Tzarist public library.

Karaite youth! Love your people and do not condemn your literature! Come to help your people! Study Eastern languages at University​​, become an Orientalist! Become a vanguard of the glory of the Karaite people!