The Moses Zacuto Project assesses various fields of his kabbalistic activities by focusing in particular on Zacuto’s interest in traditions and writings of practical Kabbalah and Kabbalah of holy names, most prominently in his widely circulating compendium “The Roots of the Holy Names” (Shorshei ha-Shemot).
One part of this research is dedicated to producing an annotated edition of Zacuto’s early autograph “The Book of Secrets” (Sefer ha-Sodot), an assemblage of magical recipes surviving in a single manuscript which also features magical formulae that Zacuto collected in Poland.
The second objective of the project is to analyze Zacuto’s decidedly encyclopedic approach to categorizing theoretical and practical Kabbalah. The impact of these materials on Zacuto’s halakhic writings will also be examined, including the evidence from manuscripts that have not been examined thus far.
A third aspect is an analysis of Zacuto’s extensive correspondence with his students, kabbalistic sages, and community leaders throughout the Jewish world. The project will unearth letters that have been hitherto unknown and will provide a historical analysis of Zacuto’s epistolary activities.