Ktiv: The International Collection of Digitized Hebrew Manuscripts


Over 75,000 digitized manuscripts at your fingertips

Fulfilling David Ben-Gurion’s early vision in the digital age.

Envisioned by David Ben-Gurion in 1950, the National Library of Israel's Institute of Microfilmed Hebrew Manuscripts (IMHM) collects copies of all extant Hebrew manuscripts, whether privately owned or housed in public collections, from all over the world. It provides researchers and the public with access to nearly 80,000 manuscripts, comprising some 90% of all known Hebrew manuscripts in the world. The IMHM is one of the Library's most successful endeavors and one which has completely revolutionized Jewish studies.


With rapid advances in technology that significantly expand options for preservation, presentation and access to digital content, the National Library launched Ktiv: The International Collection of Digitized Hebrew Manuscripts. This initiative, undertaken in partnership with the Friedberg Jewish Manuscript Society (FJMS), will enable global centralized digital access to the complete corpus of existing Hebrew manuscripts. The images will be preserved long-term using state-of-the-art technology, and the collection will be accessible using innovative research and discovery tools to international communities of researchers and users. Leading institutions which have already committed to partner in this initiative include the Vatican, the British Library, the National Library of Russia, the German National Library, the Bibliothèque nationale de France, the Palatina Library in Parma, the Jewish Theological Seminary, Bibliotheek Ets Haim in Amsterdam, the Austrian National Library and others.

We welcome new partners and sponsors to join the vision:

  • Digitizing tens of thousands of Hebrew manuscripts from dozens of collections across the globe
  • Performing quality assurance to ensure superior digital images
  • Developing the Ktiv website and enhancing collection item descriptions for the optimal user experience and search capacity