Legal document: Moss. VII,58.1

Legal document Moss. VII,58.1


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In PGP since 2017


Verso: Legal document. Partnership agreement. Dating: Late 13th century CE according to Lieberman, but in fact probably closer to 1230 CE (the date of recto). Location: Fustat. The scholar (ha-talmid) Moshe b. Ṭahor partners with Abū Saʿd b. Abū l-ʿAlā al-Ṣabbāgh in an apothecary shop. Moshe is paid 6 dirhams a month agrees to work for a year and a half. His wage is guaranteed by Abū Saʿd’s father Abū l-ʿAlāʾ (ll.7-8). Because of the guarantee of Abū al-ʿAlāʾ, three qinyanim are performed: Moshe's agreement to work, Abū Saʿd’s agreement to pay, and the guarantee of Abū l-ʿAlāʾ’. Although the parties’ relationship is described as a partnership, Moshe's wages being fixed suggests an employment agreement, though likely not an apprenticeship, both because Moshe is not a youth (line 5 alludes to his five sons) and is said to manage or set up the store. The date and signatures are missing from the document in its current state of preservation, though T-S NS J405 (PGPID 26473) reveals Abū Saʿd agreeing to repay a debt of some eight hundred dirhams from November 1275. Perhaps Abū Saʿd had come upon difficult times and needed the guarantee of his father in order to convince Moshe to manage the apothecary shop. Note: Abū al-ʿAlāʾ's guarantee is for fulfillment of the obligation “to the store”, suggesting a sense of corporate identity ascribed to the store and its creditors. (Information from Lieberman, "A Partnership Society", 100)

Moss. VII,58.1 1v



S. D. Goitein, unpublished editions.
  1. אקנינא מן מרנא ורבנא משה התלמיד הנכבד הזקן היקר בר מרנא ורבנא טהור הזקן הנכבד נע
  2. אנה קד ארתצי בשרכה אבו סע[ד] בן אבו אלעלא אלצבאג סט פי דכאן אלעטר ואנה יקוום אלדכאן אלתי
  3. לה ומהמא כאן פיהא מן ראס מאלה אמא ארבעין דינאר או עשרין או דינאר יאכד מן אבו סעד
  4. אלמדכור מא יכון דרהמא מן אלדראהם אלמתעאמל בהא באלדיאר אלמצריה פקט ואנה לא יאכד מ . אלדכאן
  5. סוי רבע כל יום סתה דראהם אלשהר כמיס אולאדה חיניד אקנינא מן משה אלמדכור אנה ארתצי
  6. באלשיך אלאגל אלסעיד ובשרכתה מדה סנה ונצף ואנה ילאזם אלדכאן ולא יקום מנהא ומתי קאם
  7. מנהא אנפסך אלקנין תם אקנינא מן ואלדה אלשיך אבו אלעלא קנין שלם בלפט מעכשיו אנה קד קבל עליה
  8. בצמאן דרך אבנה אבו סעד פי אלמלאזמה ללדכאן פאקנינא מן אבו סעד אנה ידפע למרנא ורבנא משה
  9. התלמיד הנזכר רבע דרהם כל יום לא ימנעה ענה גמלתה סתה דראהם אלשהר מדה אלסנה ונצף אלמדכורה
  10. פלמא נפד אלקנין אלכאמל אלשרוט בלשון מ[עכשיו . . . . . . . [ . . ] . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . [
  11. וחתמנא ויהבנא למא[
  12. לשטרות בפ[סטאט


Phillip Ackerman-Lieberman, "A Partnership Culture: Jewish Economic and Social Life Seen Through the Legal Documents of the Cairo Geniza" (PhD diss., Princeton University, 2007).


  1. We performed a qinyan with our teacher and our master Moses the Student, the honored, the Elder, b. our teacher and our master Ṭahor, the honored Elder, (who) r(ests in) E(den),
  2. that he agreed to the partnership (shirka) of Abū Sa‘[d] b. Abū al-‘Alā’ the Dyer (may his) e(nd be) g(ood), in an apothecary-shop. He will manage the shop which
  3. he has, and whatever is there in terms of capital, whether it is forty dinars or twenty or (even a single) dinar. He will take from the aforementioned Abū Sa‘d
  4. only whatever dirhams there will be out of the dirhams used in the Egyptian localities. He will take from the … store
  5. only a quarter each day, six dirhams a month, (for) his five sons. Then we performed a qinyan with the aforementioned Moses, to the effect that he agreed
  6. with the glorious Elder al-Sa‘īd and to his partnership (shirka) for the period of a year and a half. He is obligated (to work in) the store and he will not get up from it. If he gets up from it,
  7. the qinyan shall be nullified. Then we performed a qinyan with his father, the Elder Abū al-‘Alā’, a complete qinyan, with the formula “effective immediately”, that he received from him
  8. as a guarantee of his son Abū Sa‘d’s fulfilment of the obligation to the store. Then we performed a qinyan with Abū Sa‘d to the effect that he would pay to the aforementioned, our teacher and our master Moses
  9. the Student a quarter of a dirham each day, not withholding from him the total of six dirhams a month, for the aforementioned length of a year and a half.
  10. When the complete qinyan was effected, the stipulations were oral, effective immediately… […]
  11. and we signed and gave it to […]
  12. for Documents, in Fu[sṭāṭ Egypt, situated on the Nile River …]

Moss. VII,58.1 1r

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