Elena Lolli


Rothschild Postdoctoral Fellow

Faculty / College Address:

Clarendon Institute / Corpus Christi College



Research Interests:

My research concerns Italian Judaism in the medieval and modern era, with a particular focus on manuscript sources for the study of socio-economic life and cultural production of Jewish communities in Northern Italy.

I work primarily with Pinqasim and other such documents and records written in Hebrew, Judaeo-Italian, Italian or Latin, and am particularly interested in what this material can reveal about the socio-economic and cultural circumstances of the communities in which it was produced.

Current Projects:

The Account Book of a Jewish Pawnbroker in Northern Italy for the Years 1408-1410. An Unpublished Manuscript for the Economic History of the Jews During the Renaissance. The purpose of this project is to study and edit an unpublished account book of the Renaissance period in Hebrew and Judeo-Italian and use it for reconstructing social and economic history of the Jews in Emilia Romagna. This original manuscript, which is the oldest known register of Jewish lenders in Italy, can shed new light on the economic history of the Jews and in particular on important specific questions concerning credit in North Italy, Jewish-Christian economic relations, reconstruction on the material culture through the mentions of the pawned objects, the study of their prices, as well as the history of accounting practices.


Some publications are available at https://oxford.academia.edu/ElenaLolli


Il Libro dei morti della Comunità Ebraica di Lugo di Romagna per gli anni 1658-1825, Giuntina, Firenze, 2020, pp. 432.


-    Newly Discovered Fragments found in the Choir Books of Saint Domenico’s Monastery Library in Bologna, «Books Within Books Magazine» (https://bwb.hypotheses.org/415).

-    With D. STOEKL BEN EZRA, B. BROWN-DEVOST, P. JABLONSKI, B. KIESSLING, H. LAPIN, BiblIA - a General Model for Medieval Hebrew Manuscripts and an Open Annotated Dataset, HIP21: The 6th International Workshop on Historical Document Imaging and Processing, Lausanne, Switzerland September 5-6, 2021, Conference Proceedings, Association for Computing Machinery, New York.

-    Books within Books General Assembly, June 21-22, 2021. Conference report, in «Books Within Books Magazine», Jul 2021, (https://bwb.hypotheses.org/351).

-    La casa del rabbino. Momenti di vita ebraica nella Lugo di fine Settecento, «Romagna Arte e Storia», numero monografico Case, dolci case. Abitare nei borghi e nelle città della Romagna, secc XV-XX, 117 (2020), pp. 55-68.

-    ‘A good Wife is a great blessing’. Female portraits through the Lugo di Romagna Jewish Community’s Register of the dead (1658-1825), «Materia Giudaica» XXIV (2019), pp. 99-106.

-    «I miei occhi piangono lacrime». Nuovi studi sulle fonti interne della Comunità ebraica di Lugo dei secoli XVII-XVIII, «Romagna Arte e Storia», 112 (2019), pp. 39-52.

-    The Ḥevrat Gemilut Ḥasadim of Lugo and the death recordings of two distinguished fellows: Rabbis Avraham Dawid and Šelomoh Yaḥyah, «Materia Giudaica» XXIII (2018), pp. 131-140.

-    L’atto di morte del rabbino di Lugo Yiṣḥaq Berekyah da Fano III (1676-1750). Note per una ricostruzione biografica, «Materia Giudaica» XXII (2017), pp. 151-158.

-    Il tragico decesso di due rabbini lughesi nel 1666 Šelomoh Fano e Yosef Yaḥyah, «Materia Giudaica» XX-XXI (2015-2016), pp. 165-177.

-    «Per trarli dalle tenebre dell’ignoranza». Nuovi documenti sulle prediche coatte agli ebrei di Lugo nel Settecento, «Materia Giudaica» XIX 1-2 (2014), pp. 103-116.

-    Vita ebraica a Lugo nei verbali delle sedute consiliari degli anni 1670-1759, «Materia Giudaica» XIX 1-2 (2014), pp. 455-468.

Further Information:

-    Member of the international project ‘Books within Books: Hebrew Fragments in European Libraries’ headed by Prof. Judith Olszowy-Schlanger. The project deals with the finding, cataloging and dissemination of knowledge on the phenomenon of re-employment of medieval Hebrew manuscripts recovered from book bindings and notarial files (for further information see: http://hebrewmanuscript.com/).

-    Member of the joint French-Israeli Project ‘Tikkoun Sofrim’ developed by the École Pratique des Hautes Études, PSL University of Paris, the eLijah-Lab at the University of Haifa and the National Library, Israel. The aim of the project is to make Medieval Hebrew manuscripts openly and freely available as texts (for further information see: https://tikkoun-sofrim.firebaseapp.com/en/).

-    Member of the Project 'Sofer Mahir. Automatic Transcription of Manuscripts for an Open Source Library of Ancient Rabbinic Compositions' by Prof. Stökl Ben Ezra (École Pratique des Hautes Études, Paris). This project deals with the application of cutting edge document analysis, Handwritten Text-Recognition (HTR) and other machine learning on manuscript images of several European and American libraries and the National Library of Israel for the creation of an open source repository for precise transcriptions of tannaitic rabbinic literature (for further information see: https://sofermahir.hypotheses.org/6).

-    Member of the Italian Association for the Jewish Studies (AISG) and Peer reviewer of the journal ‘Materia Giudaica’

-    Member of the scientific committee and Content curator of the official website of Italian-Israeli Association of Romagna

Elena Lolli