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Sabbatai Sevi: The Mystical Messiah (Bollingen Series, No. 93) Paperback – January 1, 1976
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"Immensely important and fascinating. . . . A monumental work of historical scholarship, which recounts in minute detail a moving tragedy of vast dimensions."--The New York Review of Books
From the Back Cover
Messianic longing and expectation, always rife throughout Jewish history, have often found expression in movements prompted by messianic pretenders, forerunners, or prophets.
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Top Customer Reviews
The author rejects the traditional explanation that followers of Sevi were attracted to him because of the deprivation experienced by some Jews of the period. As Scholem points out, even wealthy communities of Jews in Amsterdam and Greece found him irresistible. Patterns of the growth of the movement are given great attention and are fascinating.
Many people are put off by the length of this work (almost 1000 pages of prose). However, the field is so vast, that a shorter book would not have done it justice. While somewhat esoteric, Sabbati Sevi provides a powerful window into a period of Jewish history given too little study.
I strongly recommend this book. I recommend it to Jews who want to know about their history. I recommend it to Christians, since the parallels between Sevi and Jesus are many and deep. Lastly, I recommend it to anyone who has an eye for the tragic, who is prepared to read how human frailty can bring about great acheivements and the noblest of intentions can nearly destroy a people.