(late tenth century), Spanish scholar. According to the 13th-century Arab biographer Ibn Abi Usaybi’a, Abu al-Fadl, who lived in Saragossa, was a member of a distinguished Andalusian Jewish family of priestly descent. He was competent in medicine, philosophy, arithmetic, and music. He had a good knowledge of both Arabic and Hebrew. Moses ibn Ezra refers to Abu al-Fadl as one who "acquired knowledge in all branches of science, was accom-


(Heb. Aaron b. Jeshua; Jerusalem, first half of 11th century), Karaite grammarian, lexicographer and exegete. Abu al-Faraj accepted the Greek theory (which reached him through Arabic channels) that language is an artificial product of human convention and is governed by the laws of logic. His method and terminology draw heavily on Arab linguists. He held that all forms of the Hebrew verb are based on the infinitive, and made a detailed study of the particle. He also pioneered the investigation of biblical Aramaic grammar in its relationship to Hebrew, as well as comparative treatment of Hebrew, Aramaic, and Arabic. He followed strictly the principle of bi-literal roots. The works of Abu al-Faraj became well known among Rabbanite scholars of Spain, who refer to him at times simply as "the Jerusalemite Grammarian." All his writings are in Ju-deo-Arabic. They include Al-Kitab al-Mushtamil, on the roots and formations of the Hebrew language (mss. in St. Petersburg; among them the copy made in 1112 for the gaon Elijah b. Abiathar) Al-Kitab al-Kafi, a digest of the former, published by G. Khan, M. Angeles Gallego, and J. Olszowy-Schlanger as The Karaite tradition of Hebrew Grammatical Thought in Its Classical Form: A Critical Edition and English Translation of al-Kitab al- kafi fi al-luga al-Ibraniyya by Abu al-Faraj Harun ibn al-Faraj, Leiden 2003; Sharh al-Alfaz, an Arabic translation of selected verses or clauses in the Bible, with explanatory notes, arranged in the order of the Bible; and a commentary on the Pentateuch in Arabic, said to be an abridgement (talkhif) of that of *Joseph b. Noah, who was his teacher. Even though an abridgement, it is quite extensive; most of it survived in several fragmentary mss. in St. Petersburg. Another important contribution was his work on the phonetics of biblical Hebrew according to the Tiberian tradition and the rules of cantilla-tion of the biblical text, entitled Hidayat al-Qari ("The Guide of the Reader"). Until quite recently it was ascribed to various other authors. The importance of the work lies in its uniqueness as a source for the living tradition in 11th-century Erez Israel. The work was written in a long and short version. Of the former only short fragments have survived, while most of the latter was published in a critical annotated edition by I. Eldar (Jerusalem 1994). Various Hebrew and Judeo-Arabic adaptations had been circulating in the Middle Ages in Europe and the Near East, one of them a paraphrase by the Byzantine Karaite Joseph ha-Qustandini (11th century?), entitled Adat Devorim.


(Samaritan Abi-Afeta Ban Ab-H isdah; 14th century), author of a Samaritan chronicle in Arabic, Kitab al-Tarikh ("Annals"). Born in Damascus of the Danati family, which was renowned for its scholars and scribes, Abu al-Fat went on a pilgrimage to Nablus in 1352. He was invited by the high priest Phinehas b. Joseph to write the history of his people from the creation of the world to his own time. Only in 1355, on a second visit to Nablus, was he able to start this undertaking. He brought with him three fragmentary chronicles in Hebrew and a Silsila (chain), i.e., a genealogical list of the Samaritan high priests beginning with *Aaron (Moses’ brother) that came from the home of the high priest in Damascus; this was presumably the Tolidah (see *Samari-tans, Language and Literature). The high priest in Nablus put at his disposal a number of chronicles in Hebrew and Arabic, among which was the still extant Samaritan Book of Joshu in Arabic. Another work in the otherwise unknown chronicle of Z adakah was rejected by Abu al-Fat as unreliable.

The 14th century was a time of revival for the Samaritan community in Nablus, and Abu al-Fat sought to make use of the scanty and dispersed source material still existing in his time before it might be lost. Like all medieval chronicles, his work contains much legendary material. The dating is not always accurate. Abu al-Fat wrote in Middle Arabic, and his language is colored by many Hebraisms, showing his dependence on the Pentateuch and in some places on other Hebrew scriptures. The occasional use of elegant Arabic rhetorical figures reveals that he was also versed in Arabic literature. Abu al-Fat’s Annals end at the time of Muhammad, but, in accordance with Samaritan practice, various manuscripts were extended by later scribes. R. Payne-Smith began to edit the Arabic text together with a literal English translation (in M. Heidenheim’s Deutsche Vierteljahrschrift fuer englisch-theologische Forschung und Kritik (1863), 303-35, 431-59), but discontinued his work with the appearance of E. Vilmar’s scholarly edition Abulfathi Annales Samaritani (Go-tha, 1865). Vilmar added a detailed introduction and short notes in Latin.


(Samaritan Ab-H isda Azzuri;c. 11th century), Samaritan halakhist, exegete, and liturgical writer of priestly origin. His surname Azzuri may designate his origin from either the Syrian town Zor (Tyre) or the village Zorta near Nablus. The first translation of the Samaritan Pentateuch into Arabic is ascribed to him; it was revised two centuries later by Abu Sa’id (see *Samaritans, Language and Literature). His chief work, written in Arabic and called Kitab al-Tabbakh ("Book of the Cook" or "Book of the Druggist," and called by the Samaritans themselves "Book of the Meat") is a compendium of oral law dealing with many aspects of Samaritan practice and belief. It includes many polemical passages against the Jews – *Rabbanites and Karaites alike – and against some Christian and Muslim tenets. His halakhic decisions are still valid in the Samaritan community.

Three of Abu al-Hasan’s exegetical treatises in Arabic are extant: Sharh Asrat Addebarem, a commentary on the Ten Commandments (John Rylands Library, Manchester, Gaster Collection, Ms. 1929); a commentary on "Haazinu" (Deut. 32), known also as al-Khutba al-Jamia ("The General Sermon," ibid., Gaster Collection, Ms. 1813); and Kitab al-Maad ("Book of Resurrection"; Bodeleian Library, Oxford, Ms. Hunt. 350). In the last he adduces proofs from the Pentateuch for the Samaritan belief in the day of vengeance and recompense (Deut. 32:35) and for the rising of the dead from the dust of their graves. Verses from "Ha’azinu" form an important part of these proofs. As the above manuscripts are included in some copies of Kitab al-Tabbakh, as parts of the entire compendium, it remains questionable whether they originally belonged to the compendium and later became independent works under the influence of copyists and scribes, or vice versa. Abu al-Hasan also became known as a liturgical writer. His hymns are composed in Hebrew and in 11th-century Aramaic.


(12th century), government official in Egypt. His Hebrew name was Solomon b. Shaya and he was also known as Samc al Dawla ("The Noble [exalted] of the State"). Abu al-Munajja was responsible for the administration of several districts in eastern Egypt and became famous for digging an irrigation canal (1113-18) which greatly benefited agriculture. The vizier al-Afdal, the regent, was jealous of him because the canal was called Bahr Abu al-Munajja (the canal of Abu al-Munajja) and the regent wanted it to bear his name. The enemies of the Jews defamed him with the result that he was exiled to Alexandria and imprisoned without a trial. After several years he freed himself by a ruse. Among the genizah fragments were found poems in his honor which recount the story of his case until he was finally reinstated. He is described as a benefactor of the Jews. According to Arab authors, Abu al-Munajja was the ancestor of a family of physicians, Banu al-Safir, mostly converts to Islam who served as the court physicians of the Egyptian rulers.


(Ar. Abu Aweiqila), strategic position in eastern Sinai, about 19 road mi. (30 road km.) W of *Nizanah. Situated near the course of Wadi el-Arish, at a road fork connected with el-Arish in the northwest and with Ismailiya in the west, it was a battlefield in the 1948, 1956, and 1967 wars. In one of the last battles of the War of Independence Israeli forces drove the Egyptians from Asluj (near *Revivim) through Nizana to Abu Aweigila, and from there moved on in the direction of el-Arish. During the Sinai Campaign the capture of the stronghold ultimately decided the outcome of the war. Before the Six-Day War (June 1967) the Egyptians extended their fortifications for many kilometers to all sides of Abu Aweigila and stationed a division in the area. The capture of the position enabled the Israeli Army to break through to the entire Sinai Peninsula.


(Hebtmp2C33_thumb also Abudarhan, Abudarhen,

Abudaram, Abudaran; Ar. "father of coins" meaning "the rich man"), Spanish family. david ben solomon abudarham constructed in the 13th century the synagogue of Almaliquin in Toledo, apparently identical with the Abudarham synagogue destroyed in the riots of 1391. He was probably the grandfather of the liturgical scholar David b. Joseph *Abudarham. Another david abudarham in the same period was a tax farmer in Toledo: when tax assessment was assigned to the Jewish communities of Castile in 1290, it was decided that in case of dispute David was to render final decision. After the expulsion from Spain in 1492 the family was scattered throughout Italy and North Africa. moses and isaac abudarham gave hospitality to David *Reuveni in Rome in 1524. judah abudarham, a fugitive from the Inquisition, became purveyor to the Portuguese in Agadir. After 1541 the family settled in Tetuan where it long provided the community with spiritual and political leaders. Another judah abudarham was among the founders of the Gibraltar community; one of the Gibraltar synagogues, founded in 1820, still bears the family name. A third judah abudarham represented France in Tetuan for 30 years.


(14th century), liturgical commentator in Spain, author of Sefer Abudarham, written in 1340 in Seville. Abudarham came from a distinguished family, and apparently an earlier namesake was a communal leader in Toledo. Abudarham was moved to write his book, like *Asher b. Saul of Lunel before him, because "the customs connected with prayer have become varied from one country to another, and most of the people do not understand the words of the prayers, nor do they know the correct ritual procedures and the reasons for them." The book is based on the Talmud and the decisions of the geonim, and on the early and later commentators. It abounds in source material of Spanish, Provencal, French, and Ashkenazi origins, not all of which has otherwise survived. Abudarham made extensive use of the prayer book of Saadiah Gaon, and it seems he was the last to see and use an original of this topic. He also utilized the Manhig of *Abraham b. Nathan ha-Yarhi of Lunel and the Minhagot of Asher b. Saul, the legal dicta of *Asher b. Jehiel, and the Turim. Some scholars think he was a disciple of *Jacob b. Asher, author of the Turim. Abudarham commented upon the prayers in great detail and traced the variations in custom in different countries. He included a commentary on the Passover Haggadah, rules of intercalation, the order of weekly pen-tateuchal readings and haftarot for the entire year, and calen-drical and astronomical tables. Abudarham appended to his book rules governing benedictions, dividing them into nine sections, along with their interpretation and explanation. His book was first published in Lisbon in 1490 and has since been republished frequently. H.J. Ehrenreich began an edition of it in Klausenberg in 1927, based upon a different manuscript together with an extensive commentary, but did not complete it. An edition, known as Abudarham ha-Shalem with variant readings, according to the same manuscript, introduction, and supercommentary, by S.A. Wertheimer, was published in Jerusalem (1959, 1963) by his grandson. However, a comprehensive critical edition of this topic is still lacking. Abudarham also wrote a commentary on liturgy for the Day of Atonement ascribed to *Yose b. Yose, as well as on other liturgical poems (published under the title of Tashlum Abudarham).


Israeli Arab village in the Judean Hills 8 mi. (13 km.) W. of Jerusalem. Its area consists of 1 sq. mi. (2.5 sq. km.). In 1968 Abu Ghosh had a population of 1,710, 98% of them Muslims, and the rest Christians. In 2003 the population was 5,200. In 1992 the village received municipal council status. The village’s agricultural economy was based on grain and vegetables, vines, olives, and deciduous fruit. Income levels were about half the national average in 2004.

Biblical *Kiriath-Jearim lies within its boundaries. Its name from the Arab conquest (seventh century) was Qaryat al-Tnab ("Borough of the Grapevine"). The name Abu Ghosh stems from a high-handed 17th-century sheikh of Circassian origin, who controlled the region and whose heirs imposed a toll on every traveler to and from Jerusalem, until an end was put to the extortions at the time of the Egyptian governor Ibrahim Pasha, around 1835. After the establishment of the nearby kibbutzim *Kiryat Anavim (1920) and *Ma’aleh ha-H amishah (1938), relations between the villagers and Jews were friendly and remained so in the Israeli War of Independence. Some of the villagers cooperated with the *Haganah and with *Lohamei H erut Israel. Abu Ghosh has a Catholic monastery and a convent. The village includes a well-preserved crusader church built at the spot around 1142 because the site was then held to be *Emmaus of the New Testament. The church was partially destroyed in 1187 and rebuilt by the French government in 1899. It is under the guardianship of the Lazarist Fathers. A stone inserted in its wall bears the imprint of the Roman Tenth Legion (Fretensis), apparently stationed here in the first century c.E. The Josephine Convent of the Ark, built in 1924, stands supposedly on the site of the house of *Abinadab (11 Sam. 6). From 1957, an annual music festival was held in the village. Nearby is Aqua Bella (Heb. Ein H emed), a partially destroyed 12th-century crusader monastery, which has been made into a national park.


(Abu Imram Musa al-Z afarani),founder of a Jewish religious sect in the ninth century. He emigrated from Iraq to *Tiflis, in Georgia, hence the designation al-Tiflisi. Information about him is to be found in the writings of his Karaite opponents, among them, al-Kirkisani. Al-Tiflisi developed his own halakhah. While agreeing with accepted Karaite views, such as the Karaite dating of the Feast of Weeks and the prohibitions of the marriage of first cousins and eating the tail fat of sheep, he devised his own method of determining the occurrence of Rosh HLodesh ("New Moon"). According to *Japheth b. Ali ha-Levi, a tenth-century Karaite, al-Tiflisi rejected the doctrine of resurrection. This, however, is doubtful, for his other opponents would have attacked al-Tiflisi for such a deviation. The sect of Ti-flisites survived several generations after the death of its founder, as evidenced by Judah Hadassi’s 12th-century Eshkol ha-Kofer.


Founder of a Jewish sect in Persia, the first to be formed after the destruction of the Second Temple. Abu ‘Isa was also called Obadiah, evidently an honorific bestowed on him by his admirers. According to the Karaite scholar al-*Kirkisani, Abu ‘Isa lived during the reign of Caliph Abd al-Malik ibn *Marwan (685-705); the Arabic historian Shahrastani places him during the reigns of the Umayyad caliph Marwan ibn Muhammad (744-50) and al-Mansur (754-75). The latter period seems correct because the religious and political ferment in the Islamic world during the eighth century forms the suitable background for the establishment of the sect. Abu ‘Isa proclaimed himself a prophet and herald of the Messiah. He led a revolt against the Muslims, and many Persian Jews rallied behind him. After several years the rebellion was suppressed. His army was defeated by the Muslims near the ancient city of Rhagae (present-day Rai) southeast of Teheran, and Abu ‘Isa himself was killed. His followers did not believe that he was dead but rather that he had entered a cave and disappeared. According to another tradition, he placed his followers in a circle which he drew with a myrtle branch and they remained beyond reach of the enemy. Only Abu ‘Isa rode out of the area and dealt the Muslims a mighty blow single-handedly. He afterward went to the "Sons of Moses" beyond the desert to prophesy to them. The sect which Abu ‘Isa founded, known as the Isunians or Isfahanians, still existed in the time of al-Kirkisani (c. 930), who found about 20 adherents in Damascus. The movement launched by his disciple *Yudghan and the early activities of *Anan b. David reflect the influence of Abu ‘Isa’s teachings. His followers maintained that Abu ‘Isa had been an illiterate tailor who wrote his books through prophetic inspiration. He taught that five prophets, among them Jesus and Muhammad, preceded the coming of the Messiah and that he himself was the final harbinger. Basing himself on Psalm 119:164 ("Seven times daily do I praise Thee"), he ordained seven daily prayers for his followers, but did not reject recitation of the *Shema and the Amidah or observance of the holy days as practiced by *Rabbanites. The latter regarded the Isunians as legitimate Jews in all respects. That the Isunians tended to be stringent is evidenced in their prohibition of meat and wine and their ban on divorce.


(d. 1879), Tunisian rabbi. Abukara was probably the grandson of Abraham Abu-kara (d. 1817), one of the scholars of Tunis, who in 1803 signed a regulation introducing uniformity in various religious practices. A profound scholar, Abraham wrote a commentary and novellae on the Shulhan Arukh, Yoreh Deah, in four parts. The first part, Beit ha-Safek (on the laws in case of "doubt"), was published by his relative Jacob b. Elijah Abukara, who added an introduction under the title Ben Avraham (Leghorn, 1882). The other parts were lost. Jacob also published the Issur ve-Hetter of *Jeroham b. Meshullam from a manuscript in the collection of Abraham, together with Ben Avraham.


(Heb.tmp2C34_thumbArabic for "father of health";also Abulaffia, Abulefia, Abualefia, Abu Alafia, etc.), widespread and influential family, members of which were rabbis, poets, statesmen, and communal leaders in Spain. After the expulsion of the Jews from Spain the name became common in some Oriental countries. A distinguished rabbinical family was established in Palestine and Syria after Hayyim ben Moses (?) Abulafia moved from Smyrna to Tiberias. The most important Spanish branch, centered in Toledo from the 12th century, were levites and generally called Levi (Arabic Al-lavi) Abulafia, etc. The epitaphs of many members of the family, sometimes obsequiously phrased, are preserved; they included (beside those subsequently mentioned in individual articles) the physician Moses ben Meir (1255); Joseph ben Meir, rabbi in Seville, perhaps his grandson (1341); the communal leaders and royal officials Meir ben Joseph, Samuel, and Meir ben Solomon (victims of the Black Death, 1349-50); and Samuel ben Meir (1380). Samuel Abolafia of Almeria was in charge of the commissariat for the Catholic monarchs during the campaign against Granada in 1484. The New Christian magistrate Juan Fernandez Abolafia participated in the plot against the *Inquisition in Seville and was a victim of the first *auto-da-fe there in 1481. Joseph David Abulafia (i) (d. 1823), was av bet din in Tiberias before 1798 and later rabbi in Damascus. He signed letters of introduction for the emissaries of Tiberias as did his grandson Joseph David Abulafia (ii) (d. 1898), who was also rabbi in Tiberias. Moses and Jacob Abulafia were among the Jews arrested in Damascus in 1840 in connection with the ^Damascus blood libel: the former, designated as a rabbi, informed against his coreligionists. Isaac Abulafia was rabbi in Damascus (1876-88). In Italy in modern times the name was rendered as Bolaffio, Bolaffi, etc. It is said that the first Jew to settle in Spain in the modern period was an Abu-lafia from Tunis.


(1240-after 1291), founder of the prophetic Kabbalah. Born in Saragossa, Spain, Abulafia moved to Tudela in his childhood and studied with his father until the latter’s death in 1258. In 1260 he left Spain for the Land of Israel in search for the legendary *Sambatyon river. However, the war between the Mongols and Mamluks in 1260 caused his return to Europe, via Greece. He studied in the early 1260s in Capua with R. Hillel of Verona, concentrating basically the Guide of the Perplexed, and then returned to Spain. In 1270 he began to study a particular kind of Kabbalah in Barcelona, whose most important representative was Barukh Togarmi, and received a revelation with messianic overtones. He soon left for Castile, where he disseminated his prophetic Kabbalah among figures like R. *Moses of Burgos and R. Joseph *Gikatilla. Some time around 1275 he taught the Guide of the Perplexed and his Kabbalah in a few cities in Greece and in 1279 he made his way through Trani to Capua, where he taught four young students. In the summer of 1280 he arrived in Rome and attempted to see the Pope Nicholas iii in order to discuss his vision of Judaism as a mystical religion. This meeting was part of a messianic scheme. However, the pope died suddenly and Abulafia was imprisoned for some weeks and then left for Messina, Sicily. There he was active for a decade (1281-91) and had several students as well as some in Palermo. Around 1285 a polemic commenced between him and R. Solomon ben Abraham ibn *Adret of Barcelona concerning Abulafia’s claims that he was a prophet and messiah. This controversy was one of the principal reasons for the exclusion of Abulafia’s Kabbalah from the Spanish schools.

Abulafia’s literary activity spans the years 1271-91 and consists of several dozen books, treatises on grammar, and poems. He wrote many commentaries: three on the Guide of the Perplexed – Sefer ha-Ge’ulah (1273), Sefer Hayyei ha-Ne-fesh, and Sefer Sitrei Torah (1280); on Sefer Yezirah: – Ozar Eden Ganuz, (1285/6), Gan Na’ul, and a third untitled; and a commentary on the Pentateuch – Sefer-MaftehOt ha-Torah (1289). More influential are his handbooks, teaching how to achieve the prophectic experience: Hayyei ha-Olam ha-Ba (1280), Or ha-Sekhel, Sefer ha-Heshek, and Imrei Shefer (1291). Of special importance for understanding his messianology are his "prophetic books" written between 1279 (Patras) and 1288 (Messina), where revelations including apocalyptic imagery and scenes are interpreted as pointing to spiritual processes of inner redemption. The spiritualized understanding of the concepts of messianism and redemption as an intellectual development represents a major contribution of the messianic ideas in Judaism. As part of his messianic propensity, Abulafia become an intense disseminator of his Kabbalah, orally and in written form, trying to convince both Jews and Christians.

In his first treatises, Get ha-Shemot and Mafteah ha-Re’ayon, Abulafia describes a linguistic type of Kabbalah similar to the early writings of R. Joseph Gikatilla. In his later writings, the founder of prophetic Kabbalah produces a synthesis between Maimonides’ Neoaristotelian understanding of prophecy as the result of the transformation of the intellectual influx into a linguistic message and techniques to reach such experiences by means of combinations of letters and their pronunciation, breathing exercises, contemplation of parts of the body, movements of the head and hands, and concentration exercises. Some of the elements of those techniques stem from commentaries on Sefer Yezirah of Ashkenazi origin, while others reflect influences of Yoga, Sufism, and hesychasm. He called his Kabbalah "the Kabbalah of names," that is, of divine names, being a way to reach what he called the prophetic experience, or "prophetic Kabbalah," as the ultimate aims of his way: unitive and revelatory experiences. In his writings expressions of what is known as the unio mystica of the human and the supernal intellects may be discerned. Much less concerned with the theosophy of his contemporary kabbalists, who were interested in theories of ten hypostatic sefirot, some of which he described as worse than the Christian belief in the trinity, Abulafia depicted the supernal realm, especially the cosmic Agent Intellect, in linguistic terms, as speech and letters.

In his later books, Abulafia repeatedly elaborated upon a system of seven paths of interpretation, which he used sometimes in his commentary on the Pentateuch, which starts with the plain sense, includes also allegorical interpretation, and culminates in interpretations of the discrete letters, the latter conceived of as the path to prophecy. Abulafia developed a sophisticated theory of language, which assumes that Hebrew represents not so much the language as written or spoken as the principles of all languages, namely the ideal sounds and the combinations between them. Thus, Hebrew as an ideal language emcompasses all the other languages. This theory of language might have influenced *Dante Alighieri. In his writings Abulafia uses Greek, Latin, Italian, Arabic, Tatar, and Basconian words for purpose of gematria.

Abulafia’s Kabbalah inspired a series of writings which can be described as part of his prophetic Kabbalah, namely, as striving to attain extreme forms of mystical experiences. The most important among them are the anonymous Sefer ha-Zeruf (translated into Latin for *Pico), Sefer Ner Elohim, and Sefer Sha’arei Zedek by R. Nathan ben Saadiah Harar, who influenced the Kabbalah of R. *Isaac of Acre. The impact of Abulafia is evident in an anonymous epistle attributed to Maimonides; R. Reuven Z arfati, a kabbalist active in 14th century Italy; Abraham *Shalom, Johanan *Alemanno, Judah *Albotini, and Joseph ibn Zagyah; Moses *Cordovero and Hayyim *Vital’s influential Sha’arei Kedushah; *Shabbetai Z evi, Joseph *Hamiz, Phinehas Elijah Horowitz, and *Mena-hem Mendel of Shklov.

Extant in many manuscripts, Abulafia’s writings were not printed by kabbalists, most of whom banned his brand of Kabbalah, and only by chance introduced in their writings a few short and anonymous fragments. Scholarship started with an analysis of his manuscript writings by M.H. Landauer, who attributed the book of the Zohar to him. A. Jellinek refuted this attribution and compiled the first comprehensive list of Abulafia’s writings, publishing three of Abulafia’s shorter treatises (two epistles, printed in 1853/4, and Sefer ha-Ot in 1887), while Amnon Gross, published 13 volumes, which include most of Abulafia’s book and those of his students’ books (Jerusalem, 1999-2004). Major contributions to the analysis of Abulafia’s thought and that of his school have been made by Gershom Scholem and Chaim Wirszubski. Some of Abulafia’s treatises were translated into Latin and Italian in the circle of Pico della Mirandola, mostly by Flavius Mithridates, and Pico’s vision of Kabbalah was significantly influenced by his views. This is the case also with Francesco Giogio Veneto’s De Harmonia Mundi. Abulafia’s life inspired a series of literary works such poems by Ivan Goll, Moses Feinstein, and Nathaniel Tarn; Umberto Eco’s novel Foucaults Pendulum; and a George-Elie Bereby’s play; in art, Abraham Pincas’s paintings and Bruriah Finkel’s sculptures; and several musical pieces.


(Hezekiah) DAVID BEN MORDECAI (18th century), Italian scholar and poet. His family originated in Aquileia, but he himself lived first in Leghorn and then in Trieste, where he married the daughter of R. Isaac Formiggini. He began to write at the age of 13, but his early compositions (including an elegy on the victims of the disaster in the Mantua ghetto in 1776) were lost. His only published work was Ben Zekunim (1793). The first part, entitled Yesod Olam, is an introduction to the Talmud for young people, based on the Halikhot Olam of *Jeshua b. Joseph ha-Levi. The final section quotes commendatory statements on the Talmud by gentile scholars such as *Galatinus and *Basnage. The second part, Mizmor le-David, contains miscellaneous poems and elegies, revealing a fair knowledge of classical mythology and literature, and closes with patriotic poems, e.g., on the educational reforms of Emperor Joseph 11. The preface embodies a vigorous vindication of the Hebrew language. An early work on Psalms, Shiggayon le-David, has been lost.


(c. 1700-1775), rabbi and codifier. Abulafia, a grandson of H ayyim ben Jacob Abulafia, was born either in Jerusalem or in Smyrna. He studied under Isaac *Rappaport, author of Battei Kehunnah. About 1740 he was appointed rabbi of Larissa (Greece). Among his many pupils was Joseph Nah moli, author of Ashdot ha-Pisgah. In 1755, as a result of tribulations suffered by the community, he left for Salonika, where he apparently remained, acting as av bet din, until 1761. In that year the Sephardi rabbi of Amsterdam, Isaac ibn Dana de Brito, died and Abulafia was invited to succeed him. But Jacob Saul, the rabbi of Smyrna, died at the same time and, when Abulafia was invited to fill his position, he accepted the invitation. Many of Abulafia’s halakhic decisions are found in the works of Turkish scholars, who often sought his approbation for their works. Most of his own works were destroyed in the great fire of Smyrna of 1772 – including the major part of a large work on the Sefer Mitzvot Gadol of Moses of Coucy. Part of it was published posthumously together with his responsa Nishmat Hayyim (Salonika, 1806). Parts of his works were printed with the above-mentioned Ashdot ha-Pisgah (1790). Hayyim *Modai, his successor in the Smyrna rabbinate, was his pupil.


(1580-1668), Palestinian talmudist, known as the First. After studying in Safed, Abulafia was ordained by his father in about 1618. In 1628 Abu-lafia settled in Jerusalem and later moved to Hebron, where despite his advanced age he directed the yeshivah. He was one of the leading rabbis of his era. In 1651-52 Abulafia was a central figure in the controversy over the election of a new rabbi of the Hebron community and went to Cairo to enlist the support of the influential Raphael Joseph, head of Egyptian Jewry, and arrange a compromise. When Nathan of Gaza began his propaganda in support of Shabbetai Zevi, Abulafia adopted a negative attitude similar to that of his father toward the visions of H ayyim *Vital. Although he was skeptical, he wished to avoid open conflict, and did not threaten excommunication as did his father in the case of the latter. In 1666 he was one of the delegation of four who went to Gaza on behalf of the Constantinople community to investigate the authenticity of Nathan’s prophecies, and about this time he returned to live in Jerusalem. His grandson was H ayyim ben Jacob *Abulafia (ii), who renewed Jewish settlement in Tiberias in 1740.


(ii) (c. 1660-1744), rabbi, known as the Second. He is grandson of Hayyim ben Jacob *Abulafia the First. About 1666 the Abulafia family moved from Hebron to Jerusalem, where Hayyim studied with Moses Galante and others. In 1699 he went on a mission to Salonika, and in 1712 he served as rabbi in Smyrna and in 1718 in Safed where he remained until 1721, when he was reappointed rabbi of Smyrna, living there for almost 20 years.

Abulafia believed in the imminence of the messianic era and considered the restoration of *Tiberias, which had been in ruins for almost 70 years, a necessary prerequisite to it. Sheikh Dahir al-Amr, the ruler of Galilee, invited him to "come up and take possession of the land." In 1740 he moved from Smyrna to Tiberias. Despite his advanced age, Abulafia began rebuilding the city, and he sent his sons and sons-in-law abroad to enlist aid for the restoration. According to diverse legends, he planted gardens, vineyards, and fields, and built a glorious synagogue and bet midrash, a bathhouse, a press for sesame oil, stores for market day, established the Rabbi Meir Baal Haness Fund, and sent his two sons on missions abroad to collect money; he also built houses and courtyards for his fellow Jews.

In 1742-43 war broke out between Suleiman, pasha of Damascus, and Dahir. Abulafia encouraged the Jews to remain in Tiberias and gave full support to the sheikh. In the two campaigns, which ensued – the first of which ended on the 4th of Kislev 1743 and the second ending with the death of Suleiman on the 5th of Elul – the sheikh was victorious. Abu-lafia declared these two dates as holidays, which the Jews of Tiberias continued to observe annually. He died in Tiberias on the 16th of Nisan 5504.

Abulafia was a prolific author, but only those of his works which he published while in Smyrna have appeared in print: (1) Yashresh Ya’akov (1729), on the Ein Ya’akov; (2) Mikraei Kodesh (1729), on the laws of Passover, on Esther, homilies, and novellae on the Talmud and Maimonides; (3) Ez ha-Hayyim (1729), on the weekly portions; (4) Yosef Lekah, pt. one on Genesis and Exodus; pt. two on Leviticus (1730); pt. three on Numbers and Deuteronomy (1732); (5) Shevut Ya’akov (1734), on the Ein Ya’akov; (6) Hlanan Elohim (1737), on the Pentateuch, appended to Hayyim vaHesed, by his grandfather, Isaac Nissim b. Gamil.


(1775-1861), rabbi and communal worker, known also, from the initial letters of his name, as "H ana." Born in Tiberias, he succeeded his father as the head of the Jews of Tiberias. He was for a short time rabbi of Damascus. After the defeat of the Egyptian commander *Ibrahim Pasha by the Turks (1840), when some of the Arab sheikhs began to seize control of the villages and towns abandoned by the Egyptians and oppressed and maltreated their Jewish inhabitants, Abulafia asked the commander of the Turkish forces in Sidon (Saida) and Tripoli to take action to stop these acts. The latter immediately had instructions dispatched to the governor of Safed forbidding persecution of the Jews. Toward the end of his life Abulafia moved to Jerusalem and, in 1854, he was elected rishon le-Zion succeeding Isaac *Covo. In Jerusalem he supported Ludwig August *Frankl in the founding of the Laemel school. His writings have remained in manuscript, except for individual responsa published in the works of his contemporaries.


(d. 1764), talmudist and emissary for Erez Israel. Abulafia was the son of H ayyim ben Moses (?) Abulafia. He immigrated with his father to Tiberias in 1740. Active in the rebuilding of Tiberias, he went in 1743 as an emissary for this purpose to Damascus and probably to other places as well. He was appointed by his father to succeed him as rabbi and as leader of the community of Tiberias, and held these offices for 20 years. In 1764 he was appointed by the leaders of the Jerusalem community as a member of a delegation that went to Constantinople to have Rah amim ha-Kohen removed from office as representative of "Pekidei Erez Israel be-Kushta" ("The Representatives of the Land of Israel in Constantinople"). On hearing that Rati amim had already been officially appointed, some of the delegates thought it useless to proceed with the journey. Isaac, however, went to Constantinople and argued the case before Jacob Zonana, head of the "Pekidei Erez Israel," but Zonana justified the appointment. Isaac was the author of Pah ad Yizh ak (Moscow Ms. Guenz-burg, 29), a comprehensive commentary on the Sefer Yere’im of *Eliezer b. Samuel of Metz. One of his responsa was published in the Nehpeh be-Khesef (1768) of Jonah Navon (pt. 1, hm, 81a).


(1824-1910), rabbi and halakhist. Abulafia, who was born in Tiberias, was rabbi of Damascus from c. 1877. His authoritarian attitude and his habit of making independent halakhic decisions roused the opposition of the other rabbis and of the communal leaders of Damascus, who united in an attempt to remove him from his position. In 1896 they turned to Moses ha-Levi, the hakham bashi, in Constantinople, who acceded to their request by appointing Solomon Eliezer Alfandari rabbi of Damascus. The two rabbis did not at first cooperate with each other. Later, however, Al-fandari brought Abulafia into the sphere of his activities. Toward the end of his life Abulafia acted as rabbi in Tyre. From there he moved to Jerusalem, and finally to Tiberias, where he died. An outstanding halakhic scholar, his responsa Penei Yizhak were published in six volumes (1871-1906). Some scholars, especially Shalom Hai Gagin of Jerusalem, were critical of the first volume, and Abulafia wrote Lev Nishbar (1878) in reply to his critics.


(1550?-1622?), Damascus rabbi. Abulafia, the grandson of Jacob b. Moses *Berab, studied under Solomon *Absaban and under Moses Besodo -apparently in Damascus – together with Yom Tov *Zahalon. There is evidence that he may have been friendly with Isaac *Luria. It is known that he was in Safed in 1589. In 1593 he was serving as rabbi of the Spanish congregation in Damascus. About 1599 he received ordination (semikhah) – together with seven other great scholars of Safed – from Jacob (11) *Berab; Abulafia was definitely in Safed in the summer of 1599. He again visited there in the summer of 1609, returning to Damascus that same year. He ordained his closest pupil Josiah *Pinto about 1617, apparently in Safed. His relationship with H ayyim *Vital was extremely strained. Abulafia had no faith in Vital’s visions, and mocked his approach to Kabbalah. The tension between them reached its peak in 1609. Abulafia was primarily a halakhist, but he also wrote expository homilies on the Pentateuch. Some of his responsa and novellae on the Pentateuch appear in the works of his contemporaries. H .Y.D. *Azulai saw a large manuscript volume of his responsa.


(1170?-1244), talmudic commentator, thinker, and poet; the most renowned Spanish rabbi of the first half of the 13th century. His only son Judah died in 1226, but his grandchildren and great-grandchildren through his daughters lived in Toledo about a century after his death. Meir himself and his family carried the title nasi, and the whole family was connected by marriage with the foremost families of Toledo. In his youth, Abulafia went from Burgos to Toledo where he spent the rest of his life. It seems that as early as 1204 he was a member of the Toledo bet din, together with Meir ibn Migash and *Abraham b. Nathan ha-Yarhi. He played an important part in the organization of the communities in Spain, especially that of Toledo, where he instituted many religious regulations.

Abulafia’s literary activity spans four general areas: halakhah, masorah, the controversy over Maimonides’ opinion on the subject of resurrection, and Hebrew poetry. His greatest though least known work is his extensive commentary, which covered about half the Talmud. This commentary, unique both in quantity and in quality, may be considered the summation and the conclusion of the talmudic school of the Spanish rabbis, and Abulafia its last representative (his younger contemporary and countryman *Nahmanides brought an end to the local traditional method by his introduction of the tosafists’ method of study from Germany and France). In his book, originally named Sefer Peratei Peratin ("Book of Minute Details"), Abulafia goes into the smallest details of each subject, attempting to extract from his explanations the maximum of practical rules. Its rapid disappearance may be attributed to its relative verbosity, as well as to the preference shown for the books of Nahmanides. The work is written entirely in Aramaic, in the style of the geonim and Isaac *Alfasi, and all decisions are presented with confidence. Abulafia never mentions his teachers and rarely his predecessors by name, but he does draw upon and even quote (though anonymously) the early Spanish rabbis. Most of Abulafia’s specific references are to the geonim, especially to *Hai and *Sherira, and he refers as well to Alfasi, *Hananel, Joseph *Ibn Migash, *Rashi, *Maimonides, and Jacob *Tam. His knowledge of the teachings of the French and German talmudists is evidently limited.


His work presents many old Spanish versions of the Talmud which are of special importance. Only two parts have hitherto been published (under the name Yad Ramah) – those dealing with the tractates Bava Batra and Sanhedrin (Salonika, 1790-98). However, manuscripts of his commentaries to many other tractates (none of which is extant) were known to the rabbis in earlier generations. Thus a great part of his commentary on the tractate Horayot is included in *Azulai’s Shaar Yosef on the tractate Avot, in Samuel Uceda’s Midrash Shemuel (1579), and on the tractates of Nezikin, in Bezalel *Ashkenazi’s Shitah Mekubbezet. He is quoted a great deal anonymously in Menahem ha-Meiri’s commentaries on the Talmud.

Even from his own time, the study of Abulafia’s work was limited because of the penetration into Spain of the tosafists’ method of learning. Surprisingly, however, *Asher b. Jehiel of Toledo, a scholar of German origin, considered Abulafia the decisive local authority and he, his pupils (among them Jehoram and Abraham ibn Ismael), and his sons, especially *Jacob b. Asher, author of the Turim, studied his teachings, a great part of the Turim being based upon them. There were two editions of Abulafia’s work, one longer than the other. The shorter edition came first, and not the reverse, as is generally held. Examples of both editions are extant. The existing commentary to Bava Batra is from the longer edition and that to Sanhedrin from the shorter one. In the longer edition Abula-fia first explains all the Mishnayot, and only then the talmu-dic discussion. Of the hundreds of responsa which Abulafia wrote, only an incomplete collection of about 70 paragraphs is available. They are included in the Or Zaddikim (Salonika, 1799). Many of his responsa are scattered in the literature of the rishonim and others were inserted in the Turim. Other collections of responsa attributed to him in the rabbinical literature are not his.

His work Masoret Seyag la-Torah (Florence, 1750) dealt with research, based on old manuscripts, into the traditional text of the Scriptures, and, for a long time, influenced laws governing the writing of scrolls of the Torah. Menahem ha-Meiri’s Kiryat Sefer on the same subject is based on Abulafia’s version. For many generations there existed in Spain scrolls of the Torah which were allegedly copied from the one Abulafia wrote for his own use. Abulafia wrote a scroll of the Sefer Torah as a master copy (mastercodex) and it achieved great fame both in Germany and in the countries of North Africa. "A great and outstanding rabbi, distinguished in wisdom," R. Samuel ben Jacob came especially from Germany to Toledo in order to make a copy of this scroll in 1250 and another copy was made in 1273 in Burgos by R. Isaac ben Solomon of Morocco. Additional copies were made in Spain and Provence from the earlier copies until 1410. The Masoret Seyag la-Torah also attained a remarkable popularity and Abraham ibn H assan, one of the exiles of Spain, related that R. Isaac de Leon, who was one of the outstanding posekim in the generation before the Expulsion, issued instructions that all scrolls of the Torah in Spain were to be corrected according to the rules laid down in the Masoret.

The great importance of this work was equally recognized in later generations, and such distinguished scholars as Menahem ben Judah de *Lonzano in his Or Torah, Jedidiah Solomon *Norzi in his Minhat Shai, and Solomon ben Joseph *Ganzfried in his Keset Ha-Sofer laid down that the defective and plene spellings in a Sefer Torah were to be in accordance with this copy of Abulafia.

Nevertheless the extant copy, the first work of Abulafia to be published (Florence, 1750), is faulty and incomplete and also includes later additions. For instance, the Likkutei ha-Masoret and the Tikkunei Soferim as well as the list of Petuhot and Setumot in the Torah, which are printed at the end of the volume, are not by Abulafia. They represent Ashkenazi traditions which were compiled according to the Tikkun Sefer Torah of Yom Tov Lipmann *Muelhausen which was recently discovered in manuscript and subsequently published. These traditions were added to the Masoret during the 16th century. On the other hand, the original book included references to the Talmud and halakhic discussions which were omitted from many of the manuscripts, and from the published edition. These changes explain the numerous discrepancies between the existing Masoret and the masoretic views of Abulafia as reflected in the Kiryat Sefer of Ha-Meiri, which are based on Abulafia’s master copy. Abulafia also took special pains to explain the correct way of writing the scriptural portion of Haazinu, as set forth in an authenticated manuscript of Maimonides’ Yad ha-Hazakah, which he received from Samuel ibn *Tibbon. His comments in this regard are important for establishing the authenticity of the manuscript copy of the Bible known as the Aleppo Codex.

Abulafia is best known for his controversy with Maimonides over the doctrine of resurrection. Maimonides’ views on this subject seemed heretical to him. Abulafia, in spite of his youth, publicly denounced them, and was the first in Europe to do so during Maimonides’ lifetime. His accusations were mainly in the form of letters to the rabbis of southern France, especially the "sages of Lunel," who held Maimonides in great esteem and strongly defended his views. The whole correspondence, which also included an exchange of letters with the rabbis of northern France, did not bring the hoped for result and was a great disappointment to Abulafia. Thirty years later, when the controversy was renewed, he was asked by Nahmanides to take part in it again, but remembering his earlier failure, he refused. Much of the correspondence, edited by Abulafia, was published as Kitab al-Rasa’il (Paris, 1871). Abulafia’s conception of resurrection, far from being an abstract philosophy, is based upon the traditional belief, according to which the words of the rabbis on the subject are taken in their literal sense. Notwithstanding this (and contrary to Graetz’s opinion), Abulafia possessed a wide knowledge of the Hebrew and Arabic philosophy of his time. In his work are mentioned the h akhmei ha-tushiyyah ("philosophers") and their opinions concerning the creation of man, the nature of the "heavenly host" (angels), and the like (see his instructive words on Sanh. 38b concerning "Adam was a heretic"). Those of his pupils who are known by name are principally philosophers and translators of works on astronomy and natural sciences from Arabic into Hebrew. Among them are Isaac Israeli (11), author of Yesod Olam, and Judah b. Solomon, author of Midrashei ha-Hokhmah (Ms.). In his correspondence with the rabbis of Provence, Abulafia objected to many of the decisions rendered by Maimonides in his Yad ha-Hazakah. Some of his hassagot ("criticisms"), like those of Abraham b. David, were printed at the side of Maimonides’ text. A collection of these, on the tractate Sanhedrin, was published by Y. Ha-Levy Lip-shitz in Sanhedrei Gedolah (1968), but there are many errors in his introduction. Although Abulafia opposed many of Maimonides’ opinions and beliefs and resented the exaggerated respect which the rabbis of Provence accorded him, he held Maimonides in great esteem. In his work on Sanhe-drin, which contains quotations from Kitab al-Rasa’il, Maimonides is one of the few rabbis mentioned by name. After Maimonides’ death Abulafia wrote a long elegy on him (published together with his piyyutim). A collection of Abulafia’s letters (and a small number of his poems), published by Brody in 1936, reveals Abulafia to have been acquainted with the poetry of earlier Spanish Jews and to have been influenced by Moses Ibn Ezra in his meter, rhyme, and construction.


(c. 1320-1361), Spanish financier, communal leader, and philanthropist. Abulafia’s generosity provided a number of Jewish communities in Castile with synagogues, including the magnificent one still standing in Toledo (later the Church of El Transito) with florid Hebrew inscriptions in his honor. The synagogue was built by his order in 1357. This splendid synagogue was the best illustration of the status of Castilian Jewry in general, and of his prestigious position in particular. He was versatile in the Torah and was known as an observant Jew. At first steward of the estates of the king’s tutor Don Juan Alfonso de Albuquerque, Abulafia later became treasurer and adviser of Pedro the Cruel of Castile. Many royal documents are signed by him in Hebrew with his seal, containing a castle, the emblem of Castile. During the revolt of the grandees in 1354 he was one of Pedro’s principal supporters. Abulafia did much to reinforce the power of the monarchy in its struggle against the nobility by improving the financial state of the kingdom. He ordered an inquiry into the activities of the tax farmers and appointed in their place reliable persons, who were often his own relatives or other Jews; in addition he confiscated the property of the rebel nobles and amassed considerable wealth in two of the royal fortresses. He also served as a diplomat, being sent in 1358 to Portugal to negotiate a political agreement between the two kingdoms. In 1360 Pedro suddenly ordered Abulafia’s arrest, whereupon he was brought to Seville and there tortured to death. His enormous fortune was confiscated, as well as that of his relatives. Samuel’s imposing residence in Toledo, which still stands, is today the El Greco museum.


(13th century), scientist and engineer employed by King Alfonso x of Castile (1252-84). Abulafia constructed a water clock for Alfonso and translated for him from the Arabic a manual on the manufacture and uses of the candle clock, Fabrica y usos del Relox de la Candela. He also perfected hoisting devices and wrote a treatise about them, still extant in manuscript.


(c. 12201298), Spanish rabbi and kabbalist. Rabbi Todros ben Joseph ha-Levi was born in Burgos, Spain, and died in Toledo. The Abulafia family was famous and respected in Spain. His uncle, Rabbi Meir ha-Levi *Abulafia, was the "exilarch" of Spanish Jewry and widely known for his war against the Rambam (*Maimonides) and his writings. Todros, who lived during the reign of Fernando iii and Alphonso X, owed his great prominence to his wisdom and wealth, and like his uncle became the head of Castilian Jewry.

The sources portray Todros, on the one hand, as a public figure and a national-religious leader, a person of wide horizons, well versed in halakhic and midrashic literature and an occasional poet. On the other hand, he is also seen as an experienced courtier who found his way to the hearts of the king and queen. He is thought to be one of the first kabbalists in Spain, and one can learn from his writings how the basic concepts of the Kabbalah were formed. Above all, he was a model to his generation of modesty and purity. His life symbolized the absolute negation of his generation’s penchant for the ways of the knight and the promiscuity of the king’s court.

He spent his youth in Burgos. There he became friendly with Rabbi Moses ben Simeon, who was the disciple of the brother rabbis Jacob and Isaac of Soraya, and it would seem that Todros heard from his friend some of what Rabbi Moses had learned from Kabbalah teachers.

During his days in Toledo, Todros rose to a lofty position. King Alfonso X welcomed him to his court and made him one of his retinue on his voyage to France in 1275. Todros stayed with the queen in Perpignan, where he met the poet Abraham Badrashi (Bedersi). The meeting produced an exchange of rhymed letters and messages. (Some of the poems were published in the book Segulot Melakhim, Amsterdam, 1768; others are in manuscript form, British Museum add 27,168 930; Vienna manuscript 111).

In Toledo, Todros began his period of creativity. He wrote on halakhic and moral issues related to life and the affairs of his day. He did his utmost to free Jews who had been arrested on the king’s orders (1281). At the same time he reacted furiously to serious violations of religious commandments and morality in Jewish society, threatening with imprisonment and excommunication those who would break the laws. (His sermon on changing evil ways is incorporated in his book Zikkaron Li-Yehudah, 1846). Apart from his public activity, the kabbalistic writings of Todros reveal him as a mystic, a kabbalist who preserves traditions and ideas and attempts, by fusing the various schools of Kabbalah (Gerona Kabbalah and Castilian Kabbalah), to bridge the gaps between the kabbal-ists of his day. His first book, Shaar ha-Razim (edition of M. Kushnir Oron, Jerusalem, 1989) is a kabbalistic interpretation of verse 19 of Psalms. In this topic one perceives the hesitancy of the author, who is afraid of divulging secrets. The book was written as a letter replying to his friend Rabbi Moses of Burgos. In fact, the book may be viewed as an interpretative work, a kind of summing-up of the various traditions in Kabbalah as known by Todros, who attempts to fuse them through his interpretation

His second book, Ozar ha-Kavod (Warsaw, 1879), written late in his life, is an interpretation of talmudic legends. As in Shaar ha-Razim, in this topic too the author’s personality shines through. He gathers together different traditions and fuses them through the style of his writing, fusing mainly the writings of the Hasidei Ashkenaz, the letters of the Hug ha-Iyyun, and the Ismaili-Gnostic tradition with the traditions of the Gerona and the Castilian kabbalists. In both books one finds echoes of the concepts, themes, and ideas of the secret teachings that a generation later became the foundations of Kabbalah. Todros is thus important as a preserver of traditions who passed them on to the next generation. Thanks to his writings, it is often possible to understand the secrets hinted at in the writings of his teachers, the Castillian kab-balists, as well the mystical tradition in Spain and its crystallization during its early generations.

Todros belongs to that circle of kabbalists called by Ger-shom *Scholem "the Gnostic kabbalists." Rabbi Todros emphasizes in his writings the uniqueness of that circle and its method in the wide frame of Kabbalah and kabbalists of his day.

Todros was considered a uniquely exemplary figure, who may have served, as Y. Libbes believes (Keiz ad Nith abber Sefer ha-Zohar), as a model for the depiction of Rabbi *Simeon Bar Yokhai in Sefer ha-Zohar. References to him may be found in the poems of Todros ben Judah (the kabbalist’s nephew) and in the writings of Isaac ben Latif, Abraham Badrashi, and Isaac Albalag (in his book Tikkun ha-Deot, p. 101).

His son Joseph was a friend of the kabbalist *Moses de Leon, who was thought to be the author of Sefer ha-Zohar, an attribution rejected by present-day scholars, who see him as just one its authors. Joseph received from de Leon copies of parts of Sefer ha-Zohar.

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