The beginning of the new year, celebrated on the first and second day of the month Tishri, is one of the most important holidays in the Jewish calendar. Rosh Hashanah is also the day of judgment, on which God judges people and writes down their fates in two books: the Book of Life or Death. It is followed by ten days of repentance and celebration of Yom Kippur and therefore it is a special time of renewal of the bond with God and people, a time of penance, reflection on our behaviour, and seeking forgiveness. Clearly it is also time of the new beginning.
Particular signs of reconciliation with people are greetings using the blessing „Le’shana Tova Tikoteiv Vetichoteim” which is Hebrew for „May you (immediately) be inscribed and sealed for a Good Year”. The tradition of sending greetings by mail on the occasion of Rosh Hashanah dates back to the Middle Ages. However, greeting cards appeared not earlier than in the 19th century. Immediately, they become popular gaining a codified form. At the beginning, cards were made by hand. However, over time they started being partially or entirely printed.
Greeting cards for the Jewish New Year are rarity in Polish collections. Among them, there is a distinctive collection of the National Library, which holds an album with 229 cards, as well as the Jewish Historical Institute with 115 cards, tickets and New Year’s visiting cards. This year you will have a special opportunity to see a collection of our cards — most of them will be shown at a temporary exhibition at the third-floor gallery. Today we invite you to the opening on 2nd September at 15:00.