Legal document: T-S 12.126

Legal document T-S 12.126



Legal document. Partnership agreement. Dating: 1229. Location: Fustat. In a document written in Hebrew emerging from the court of Abraham Maimonides, Abū al-‘Alā b. Joseph and his father enter into a partnership with Mufaḍḍal in a sugar factory, splitting profits and losses evenly. Mufaḍḍal gave 50 dinars to "his Elder" (possibly his grandfather), which would act as capital to be used by the grandfather to purchase raw sugar; as well as an additional 50 dinars to his partners. The purpose of this document is to bring Mufaḍḍal into the relationship between Abū al-‘Alā and his father; no qinyan between the father and son is recorded here. Goitein points out that although the relationship is well-defined here, it may not have been canonized with a formal qinyan. The document may have been written for Mufaḍḍal and to record his investment (100 dinars) and the split of profits or losses due to him.The sole preserved signatory, the judge Yehiel b. Eliakim of Aleppo, is known to have signed other documents with Abraham Maimonides. (Information from Lieberman, "A Partnership Culture," 106)

T-S 12.126 1r



S. D. Goitein, unpublished editions.
  1. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ] . . . ם . שהיה בפנינו בחדש אייר שנת
  2. . . ]תקמ . לשטרות [ . . . . ] . . . . . . הורגלנו למנות בו בפסטאט מצרים
  3. . . . ] . . ל [ . . . ] נילוס היא יושבת רשות אדוננו הנגיד הגדול מרנו ורב[נו
  4. אברה]ם הרב המובהק דגל הרבנים יח[יד הד]ור ופלאו ירום הודו ויגד[ל כבודו
  5. . . . . . ] אמרו לנו אלשיך יוסף הזקן הנכבד הרו[פא] ובנו אלשיך אבו אלעלא
  6. הבחו]ר הנכבד הרופא היו עלינו עדים וקנו ממנו בכל לשון שלזכות
  7. . . . . . . . . . . ] ו ותנו לידי אלשיך מפצל התלמיד היקר בן מר ורבנו
  8. . . . . . . . ] התלמיד היקר החסיד נע להיות בידו לראיה כי רצינו ברצון
  9. נפשנו ו[ . . . . ] אותו שותף עמנו פי אלמטבך סוכר וקבלנו להיות
  10. שלשתנו שוים בריוח ובהפסד אם ריוח יהיה ייחץ לשלשה ו[לכל
  11. אחד משל[שתנו ש]ליש ואם הפסד יהיה כמו כן ייחץ לש[לשה ויקח כל
  12. [[ . . . ]] אחד ממנו שליש [ . . . . . . . . ] אלשיך מפצל חמשים דינרים
  13. מצרים זהב לזקנו אלשיך אבו אל[ . . . . . . ] להיות תחת ידיו מופקדים . . .
  14. . . ] . . . . . . . . [ . . ] . ממנו ב . . ל . . . ואן המוכרים לנו אלכנד נתן להם וקדם אלשיך
  15. [מפצל כמו כ]ן חמשים דינרים להיות מוכנים באמתחתנו וקבלו שלשתם
  16. להיות שותפים בריוח ובהפסד כל ימי שותפותם באלמטבך וקנינו [מן
  17. שלשתם בכלי הכשר לקנות בו בלשון מעכשיו בביטול כל מודעין
  18. ותנאין על מה ששמענו מפיהם בשותפות אשר התנו ביניהם
  19. בשנת . . . . בשיטה קדמיתא וטיוטא דקודם אחד דין קיומיה[הון
  20. והכל מהימן ובריר שריר וקיים
  21. יחיאל ברבי אליקים הצ[ובי]


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, the undersigned, testify to wh]at took place before us in the month of Iyyar of the year
  2. […] … 154x (of the Era) of Documents according to the count to which we are accustomed, in Fusṭāṭ Egypt,
  3. situated on the Nile River, jurisdiction of our lord, the great Nagid, our teacher and [our] Rav
  4. [Abraha]m, the outstanding Rav, the mighty hammer, Standard of the Sages, inimi[table of the gener]ation and its wonder, may (God) raise up his glory and enha[nce his honor]
  5. […] … The Elder, Joseph the honored Elder, the Doct[or,] and his son, the Elder Abū al-‘Alā’
  6. the honored [You]th, the Doctor, said to us: “Be witnesses on our behalf and perform a qinyan with us, using the language of claims
  7. [write] and sign (it) and give (it) into the hand of the Elder Mufaḍḍal the beloved student b. (our) teacher and our master
  8. […] … the beloved student, the pious, (who) r(ests in) E(den), in order that he would have proof, that we—in accordance with the intention
  9. of our souls—[…] this (person) as a partner with us in the sugar-factory. And we, all three of us, have agreed
  10. to be equal in terms of profit and loss; thus, if there is profit, it will be divided into three and [for each]
  11. one of the thr[ee of us, a th]ird, and if there is a loss, likewise, it will be divided into th[ree, and each]
  12. one of the three of us will take a third […] the Elder Mufaḍḍal fifty gold Fusṭāṭ dinars,
  13. to his Elder, the Elder Abū al-[…], to be deposited in his hand …
  14. [...] … [...] … the owners …who sell the raw sugar to us. He gave to them, and the Elder
  15. Mufaḍḍal [like]wise advanced fifty dinars to be ready (to be invested) as they stipulated. The three of them agreed
  16. to be partners in the profit and loss all the days of the partnership in the factory. We performed a qinyan [with]
  17. the three of them, with an item suitable for doing so, orally, effective immediately, nullifying all secret dispositions
  18. and conditions, according to what we heard from their mouths, in a partnership which they stipulated between them
  19. in the year … according to the old system. And there is one blank space preceding filled in with dots. This is their confirm[ation.]
  20. Everything is trustworthy and clear, proper and enduring.
  21. Jehiel b. master Eliakim the A[leppan]

T-S 12.126 1v

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