NEW YORK - The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and The Israel Museum have jointly purchased a 15th century illuminated Hebrew manuscript

Sotheby's announced Mon-day the two institutions have acquired The Mishneh Torah from the Michael and Judy Steinhardt Judaica Collection. It was about to be put up for auction in New York City.

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It's the second of a two-volume manuscript. The first is housed in the Vatican.

The Mishneh Torah had a pre-auction estimate of $4.5 million to $6 million.

Sotheby's declined to say how much the two museums paid. But it was more than the $2.9 million paid for a Hebrew Bible in 1989 at Sotheby's, which set an auction record for Judaica.

The remainder of the Steinhardt collection is being held as scheduled on Monday.

Associated Press

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