Shefa‘ tal by Shabetai Sheftel ben Akiva Horowitz (Bilzorka: Mordekhai, 1807). This kabbalistic work was issued by one of the many small presses that emerged in the Russian Empire in the late eighteenth century and is printed on the type of cheap, blue-tinted paper often used by indigent printers. The stamp at center, right, indicates that the book at one time belonged to the library of Yisroel Halevi Kitover, rabbi of Felsztyn (now Skelivka, Ukr.). (Bottom) Russian censor's stamp. (Top) Inscription by another owner of the book, "Moyshe of the village of Holvits" (Golevichi?, Bel.). (YIVO)

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To treat the subject of censorship, this entry includes three articles. The first treats the period before 1800 and provides an overview of what might be termed “internal” censorship or “self-censorship” by Jewish authorities as well as a brief review of church censorship of Jewish writings in Eastern Europe. The second article treats government censorship in the Russian Empire, and the third, censorship in the Soviet Union. For discussion of haskamot, see Approbation.