Kehila Kedosha Janina
Synagogue and Museum
Order Your Own Customized Alef
Kehila Kedosha Janina is proud to offer reproductions of Romaniote Alefs that can be customized for anyone in your family! This is the first time since WWII that new Alefs will be reproduced for our community. Kehila Kedosha Janina is currently the only source in the world offering brand new customized Alefs.
What is an Alef?
Romaniote Jews have many unique customs, one of which is the Alef. An Alef is a type of birth certificate and amulet that was traditionally created for baby boys to help protect them during the 40 days after their circumcision. In the past, the act of giving birth was associated with much danger and risk in Jewish communities all over the world because of the high rates of maternal and infant mortality. Therefore, one of the protective measures taken was the use of a birth amulet, a physical manifestation of spiritual defense. Alefs were traditionally displayed above the baby’s cradle and contain various names of G-d as well as prayers and Kabbalistic features. The names of the child and parents, the date of birth, and the names of multiple angels were all inscribed on the Alef. Alefs were historically produced among the Romaniote communities of Ioannina, Trikala, Arta, and Patras. Kehila Kedosha Janina is proud to have the largest collection of Alefs in the world.
Although originally produced for baby boys, Kehila Kedosha Janina is thrilled to offer custom-inscribed Alefs for both boys and girls. Help continue your heritage and offer your child or family member an authentic Alef they will cherish for their entire life. (You do not have to currently be a baby to have an Alef made).
New Alef Design
Each Alef is a fine art archival quality print (giclee print) on Somerset velvet archival watercolor paper. The Alef design was recently created by Rabbi Amadeo Spagnoletto, Former Chief Rabbi of Florence, who is a master Sofer (scribe). The design is directly modeled after authentic original Romaniote Alefs.
Size: 12.25” wide x 17” high
Price: $250 (includes custom inscription), plus shipping and handling
Please email Andrew Marcus at firstname.lastname@example.org, along with the following information:
Child English and Hebrew Name
Father English and Hebrew Name
Mother English and Hebrew Name
Child Birth Date (Secular Date with birth time is acceptable)