Evelyn M. Cohen

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Evelyn M. Cohen is an American art historian.


Cohen is an expert in the art of medieval Jewish manuscripts.[1]

Cohen was responsible for reuniting the two halves of the oldest dated Jewish manuscript from the German lands. While working in an archive, she recognized that the partial manuscript of a Jewish holiday prayer book that she was examining was the other half of a prayer book that she had examined in another archive.[2] The manuscript was the personal prayer book of Qalonimos ben Yehuda dated 28 Tevet, 5050 (January 12, 1290), Esslingen am Neckar.[2]

Cohen is noted particularly for her work on the role of Jewish women in commissioning, owning and using books in the medieval period and Renaissance.[1] She has recovered and describes several prayer books written in the feminine voice, including some that feature, among the blessings that begin the morning prayer, the blessing " "Blessed are you God, master of the universe, that You have made me a woman and not a man."[1]

Other manuscripts that Cohen has studied feature women in the illuminations.[1]

Cohen received the winner of the National Jewish Book Award for her book on the Rothschild Maḥzor of 1492 co-authored with Menachem Schmelzer.[3]

Cohen is the daughter of Haskell Cohen, the former Publicity Director of the NBA.


  • A Journey through Jewish Worlds: Highlights from the Braginsky Collection of Hebrew Manuscripts and Printed Books, by Evelyn M. Cohen, Emile Schrijver, and Sharon Mintz, Waanders, 2010
  • Pen and Parchment: Drawing in the Middle Ages, Metropolitan Museum of Art Publications, co-author, 2007
  • The Rothschild Mahzor, - Florence, 1492, 1983
  • Chosen: Philadelphia's great Hebraica, Rosenbach Museum and Library, co-author with David Stern, 2007
  • Omnia in Eo: Studies on Jewish Books and Libraries in Honour of Adri Offenberg Celebrating the 125th Anniversary of the Bibliotheca Rosenthaliana in Amsterdam, Peeters Publishers,co-author, 2006.
  • "Hebrew Manuscript Illumination in Italy," in Gardens and ghettos: the art of Jewish life in Italy, University of California Press, co-author, 1989.


  1. ^ a b c d "People Of The Book, People Of The Text: The Harry G. Friedman Society And Jewish Books," Menachem Wecker, March 15, 2006, Jewish Press,
  2. ^ a b The life of Judaism, Harvey E. Goldberg, University of California Press, 2001, p. 153-4.
  3. ^ [1], "Jewish Book Council Names Award Winners," April 6, 1985, New York Times.

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