ACRE To ADAM (Jews and Judaism)


(Heb.tmp2C46_thumbPtolemais; St.Jean d’Acre) coastal city in northern Israel situated on a promontory at the northern end of the Bay of Haifa, 14 mi. (23 km.) north of Haifa, in the Acre Coastal Plain.

Ancient Acre

Ancient Acre is first mentioned in the Egyptian Execration Texts (c. 1800 b.c.e.) and it appears after the battle of Megiddo in the list of cities conquered by Thutmose iii (c. 1468 b.c.e.). In the El-Amarna letters, the king of Acre, Zurata, and later his son, Zutana, appear as rivals of Megiddo and together with the king of Achshaph, as allies of Jerusalem. Acre is also mentioned in the lists of Seti I and Rameses ii. The Greeks later derived the name Acre – a Semitic word – from the Greek ake ("healing") and connected it with the legend of Heracles. During the reign of Ptolemy ii, the name of the city was changed to Ptolemais, by which it was known until the Arab conquest.

The geographic position of Acre made its occupation vital to every army waging campaign in Syria and Erez Israel. It was allotted to the tribe of Asher which, however, could not subdue it (Judg. 1:31) and it remained an independent Phoenician city. It submitted to the Assyrian king Sennacherib (701 b.c.e.) but revolted against Ashurbanipal who took revenge on the city in about 650 b.c.e.

Under Persian rule Acre served as an important military and naval base in the campaigns against Egypt. Coinage of Tyrian staters began there in 350 b.c.e. Alexander’s conquest of Syria and the fall of Tyre in 332 b.c.e. enhanced Acre’s position as is evidenced by the gold and silver coins struck there. In 312 b.c.e. Ptolemy I razed its fortifications during his retreat from Antigonus but he reoccupied the city 11 years later. An association of loyal "Antiochenes" was founded in Acre when the city became Seleucid. The city was hostile to the neighboring Jews in Galilee, and Simeon the Hasmonean had to beat off its attacks (164 b.c.e.). His brother Jonathan was treacherously taken prisoner in Acre by the usurper Tryphon in 143 b.c.e. After the overthrow of the latter five years later, the town was held by Antiochus vii Sidetes, who bestowed upon it the titles "holy and inviolable" and was in turn honored by it in inscriptions. After his death Acre became virtually independent, although it acknowledged the nominal suzerainty of various Ptolemaic rulers. It resisted all attacks of Alexander Yannai (Jos., Ant. 13:2), although it lost the Carmel region to him. From Cleopatra Selene, Acre passed to Tigranes, king of Armenia (until 71 b.c.e.) and became Roman with Pompey’s occupation of the country, Caesar landed there in 48-47 b.c.e. and his visit marked a new era for the city. Herod later made it his base for the conquest of his kingdom (39 b.c.e.). At the outbreak of the Jewish War in 66 c.e. the inhabitants massacred 2,000 of the Jewish population. The following year Acre became Vespasian’s base of operations against Galilee. Nero then settled veterans of four legions (3rd, 5th, 10th, 12th) there and made it a Roman colony: Colonia Claudia Ptolemais Germanica. As a harbor, Acre was by now overshadowed by Herod’s new port of *Caesarea. Its rights were augmented by the emperor Heliogabalus and its independent coinage continued until 268 c.e. A Christian community lived in Acre from the time of the apostle Paul (Acts 21:7).

The Roman city of Ptolemais which stretched far beyond the present Old City, extended around Tell al-Fukhar, which was the site of Phoenician Acre up to the Hellenistic period. Excavations were conducted at Tell al-Fukhar by M. Dothan between 1973 and 1979. Early Bronze I remains were found on bedrock and were fairly sparse, with wall remnants, floors, and several pits. It is possible that at the end of this period the sea level rose and the site was temporarily inundated. Substantial fortifications were uncovered dating from the Middle Bronze Age ii a-b, including a 60 ft. (18 m.) stretch of rampart of solid clay and earth surmounted by a wall. Remains of a two-story brick citadel were also exposed. These defenses surrounded the mound on all sides, save the south where it was protected by the swamps of the nearby Naaman River. A gate was uncovered to the southwest, with three chambers and three pairs of asymmetrical pilasters. The citadel was destroyed towards the end of the 18th century b.c.e. Large buildings and numerous finds (including bronze Reshef figurines) were discovered at the site dating from the Late Bronze i-ii indicating that it was a well-planned city, even though it apparently lacked defenses. Although there are some signs of occupation at the site circa 1200 b.c.e., perhaps by some of the "Sea Peoples," very little was found that could be associated with the subsequent 11th—9th centuries b.c.e. Based on the archaeological finds, the city evidently revived and flourished during the eighth and seventh centuries b.c.e., and evidence of public buildings built of ashlars was unearthed at the site. One of these buildings was destroyed apparently by Sennacherib towards the end of the eighth century b.c.e. A cache of small silver ingots belongs to this level. The Persian period was one of the most important phases in the development of Acre as an administrative and commercial center, probably from the time of Cambyses onwards. Subsequently, Acre became an important naval center of importance to both Egypt and Persia. Among the finds from this period on the tell were cultic figurines in a pit and two ostraca bearing Phoenician inscriptions, and many Greek artifacts including Attic wares, suggesting that Greek merchants and Phoenicians lived side by side in this specific part of Acre.

Acre had two harbors, one northwest of the present port, with the other south of it. The center of Hellenistic Akke/Ptol-emais moved towards the harbors and away from the tell. Numerous buildings and fortifications have been unearthed. Finds include large quantities of stamped amphora handles, indicating that wine was imported from Rhodes, Cos, and Thasos. In later Roman times, the Jewish and Samaritan quarters were also situated near the Old Port. Despite the fact that the town was considered as being strictly outside the halakhic boundaries of the Holy Land (cf. Git. 2a), the Jews re-established their community there after the war against Rome because it was the most convenient port for Galilee (although they buried their dead outside the city and within the hal-akhic boundaries of Erez Israel at the foot of Mt. Carmel and later in Kefar Yasif up to the 19th century). It served as a port of embarkation for the Patriarchs (and other rabbis) traveling to Rome and as a home port for their commercial fleet. Rabbi ^Gamaliel ii visited a bath dedicated to Aphrodite in Acre (Av. Zar. 3:4). Its fair was one of the three most famous in Erez Israel (tj, Av. Zar. 1:4, 39d) and its fisheries gave rise to the saying "to bring fish to Acre" as an equivalent of the modern "bringing coals to Newcastle." According to both Jo-sephus and Pliny, glass was discovered in its vicinity, in the sands of the Belus River (Na’aman) which were used for glass manufacture throughout antiquity. In Byzantine times Acre was the seat of a bishopric in the archdiocese of Tyre and had a large Samaritan community. In 614 c.e. it was taken, according to one source, by Jews allied with the Persian invaders of the Byzantine Empire; the Persians evacuated it 14 years later and Byzantine rule was restored. Shortly thereafter, however, in 636 c.e., it fell to the Arabs and resumed its original name, which had been preserved by the Jews, as can be seen from Talmudic sources.

Medieval Period

Letters in the Cairo Genizah refer to kehal Akko ("the congregation of Acre") and rasheha ("its leaders"). In the second half of the 11th century R. Moses ibn Kashkil, known as a scholar in many fields, arrived in Acre from Mahdiah, N. Africa. In 1104 Acre was captured by Baldwin I, Crusader king of Jerusalem. It was lost by the Crusaders in 1187 and recaptured in 1191 when the city became the Crusader capital. In 1165 *Mai-monides had paid a short visit to the town and later corresponded with the local dayyan, Japheth b. Elijah. In 1170 *Benjamin of Tudela found 200 Jews in Acre and lists the names of the leading scholars, R. Zadok, R. Japheth, and R. Jonah. *Pethahiah of Regensburg (c. 1175) also mentions in a short sentence Jews in the town. During this period Acre served as the port of disembarkation for both pilgrims and immigrants to Palestine. The Jewish community presumably received an impetus with the arrival of 300 rabbis from France and England in 1211. Among those who settled in the town were the scholars *Samuel b. Samson and his son, R. Jacob ha-Katan, Jonathan b. Jacob ha-Kohen of Lunel, and *Samson b. Abraham of Sens. Another event that stimulated both the quantitative and qualitative development of the community was the arrival in 1260 of R. *Jehiel b. Joseph of Paris, his son, and 300 of his pupils. Upon their arrival he founded a yeshivah, known as Midrash ha-Gadol de Paris, where he taught many pupils. There is also information that at about this time the scholars of Erez Israel and Babylon addressed their questions on religious matters to "the scholars of Acre." The town became a center of study and attracted many scholars. R. Abraham *Abulafia lived there for a while and *Nahmanides, who first settled in Jerusalem, moved to Acre, where he died in 1270. In the late 13th century, R. Solomon Petit taught in a yeshivah in Acre. In 1291 the town was conquered and destroyed by the Mamluks, led by al-Malik al-Ashraf who massacred Christian and Jewish inhabitants. Only a few managed to escape. After the Ottoman conquest in 1516 Acre again regained its importance as a port, and Jews gradually began to return. However, the settlement in Acre in the mid-16th century was small and impoverished. It may be assumed that Acre Jewry served as a link between the Jews of Galilee and the Mediterranean countries, and traded with Sidon, Aleppo, and Jerusalem. A letter dated 1741 states that there were over 100 Jewish householders. Moses H ayyim *Luzzatto died there of the plague in 1747. The revival of Acre as an important administrative and economic center was connected with the activities of the pashas Z ahir al-Amr and Ahmad al-Jazzar. In 1750 Acre fell into the hands of al-Amr, and in 1775 it became the capital of the vilayet of Sidon under Ahmad al-Jazzar. *Simhah of Za-lozhtsy (1764-65) notes that the Jewish settlement was small and poor. Abbe Giovanni Mariti (1767) records that the Jews had a synagogue but were not allowed to enlarge it. Al-Jazzar fortified the town, using large numbers of forced laborers, and built markets, inns (khan), and a water supply. He developed Acre into a political and military center strong enough to deter Napoleon, who in 1799 unsuccessfully besieged Acre. The British fleet under Sir Sidney Smith helped al-Jazzar to defend the city and Napoleon’s failure here marked the collapse of his Middle Eastern expeditions. In 1816 the traveler J.S. Buckingham stated that the Jews of Acre constituted a quarter of the population, had two synagogues, and were led by H ayyim *Farhi. Farhi was highly respected by the authorities; his influence was decisive in Acre, and extended down as far as the Jaffa region. He was killed by Abdallah, the ruler of Acre. The census of 1839, requested by Sir Moses *Montefiore, listed 233 Jews; and the 1849 census, 181 Jews. Most were poor and lived in the eastern and northern parts of the town. In 1856 there were only 120 Jews, and in 1886, 140. In the mid-19th century the Jews of Acre worked as peddlers and artisans, but many were without means of support.

Plan of Acre showing Crusader and Ottoman sites.

Plan of Acre showing Crusader and Ottoman sites.

Modern Acre

Acre stagnated and its shallow harbor was unfit for modern shipping. In the first decade of the 20th century, however, the Turks lifted the prohibition on building outside the Old City walls, and a new city quarter came into being on the north side, laid out with straight, and sometimes broad, roads. Although its population reached its lowest ebb before World War I, the town slowly started growing after its occupation by British forces (September 1918). There was always a Jewish population in Acre, residing alongside the Arab-Muslim, Christian, and Bahai inhabitants.

The Jewish residents, who numbered 350 in 1936, abandoned the town when the Arab riots broke out that year. During the British Mandate the fortress of al-Jazzar served as a prison in which political prisoners were also held (members of the Jerusalem *Haganah, with Vladimir *Jabotinsky, in 1920; members of the Haganah and other underground organizations in 1936-39; a group of Haganah commanders, with Moshe *Carmel and Moshe *Dayan in 1939-41). Jewish underground fighters, among them Shelomo *Ben-Yosef, and Arab rioters were executed there. This fortress was attacked by the *Irgun Z eva’i Le’umi in 1947.

During the early months of the War of Independence (1948), Acre served as an Arab base for operations against Jewish settlements further north and for a planned attack on Haifa. On May 13, 1948, however, Acre was stormed by Haganah forces and was included in the State of Israel, together with all of Western Galilee. Those of its Arab inhabitants who remained were, from the end of 1948, joined by Jewish immigrants. Acre’s population grew from 12,000 between 1953 and 1955 to 32,800 (including 8,450 non-Jews) in 1967 and 45,800 in 2002 (76% Jews, 22% Muslims, 2% Christians). At the beginning of the 21st century, most of the Arab residents lived in the Old City, while the Jewish population was concentrated to the north and east of it. The quarter east of the Old City (and of the Nahariyyah highway) was built shortly after 1948. The expansion to the north and northeast took place later, while an industrial zone took shape on the dunes south of Acre, with the installations of the industrial company called "Steel City" at its southern extremity on the Haifa Bay beach. Acre itself became an industrial center. The Steel City factories closed down during the 1990s but were replaced by others, including the Tambour paint factory and a pipe plant. The municipal area now extended over 4 sq. mi. (10 sq. km.).

Acre serves most of Western Galilee in trade and administration matters, being the center of the Acre sub-district as it had been during the British Mandate. Included in its municipal area are a government Experimental Agricultural Station (founded under the British Mandate) and the Berit Ahim (Kefar Philadelphia) youth village. Acre is an important Muslim center, its al-Jazzar Mosque being the largest within Israel’s pre-1967 borders. Together with Haifa, it is also the world center of the *Bahai faith. There are churches of several denominations (Roman Catholic, Maronite, Melkite), and a considerable number of synagogues.

Efforts were made to preserve the Oriental character of the Old City and to excavate and repair its remains. The crypt of the citadel (the refectorium of the order of St. John) was cleared, and a municipal museum, with Crusader and Arab antiquities, was established in the old Turkish bath. Excavations outside the city wall have uncovered extensive Hellenistic and Roman cemeteries and the remains of a temple with a dedication to Antiochus vii. The ancient remains in the Old City date mainly from the Ottoman period. These include the double wall of the city, the citadel, two caravanserais -the Khan al’Umdan and Khan al Firanji – and the mosque and bath built by al-Jazzar. A few remains of the Crusader period are still visible in the Burj al-Sultan and the sea wall. The Old City of Acre is a major tourist attraction, and in 2002 unesco declared it a world cultural preservation site. Since the 1980s a fringe theater festival has been held in the Old City every Sukkot.


A scholium to Horace which from the 16th century was ascribed to Acro, a second-century commentator. The actual author is unknown. The Jewish interest in the work is contained in a note on *Horace’s Satires 1, 9, 70, which states that since Moses was born circumcised, he wanted all the Jews to follow suit so that he would not be unique.


(and Alphabetizing Compositions). A literary style in which successive or alternating verses, or clusters of verses, begin with the letters of the alphabet in sequence.


Biblical literature has preserved, in complete or truncated form, 14 alphabetizing compositions. Except for one (Nah. 1), they are restricted to the Hagiographa (Ps. 9-10, 25, 34, 37, 111, 112, 119, 145; Prov. 31:10-31; Lam. 1-4). Complete acrostics occur in the conventional order in Psalms 111, 112, 119; Proverbs 31:10-31; and Lamentations 1, as well as, with a curious but unexplained variant transposition of ayin and pe, in Lamentations 2:16-17, 3:46-51, 4:16-17. While the possibility of textual dislocation cannot be entirely ruled out here, the successive repetition of the irregularity makes it a less likely solution, particularly in view of the identical phenomenon behind the Greek version of Proverbs 31:25-26, and apparently in the original forms of Psalms 34:16-17 (zaaku, v. 18 now has a remote subject) and Psalms 10:7-8c (cf. also Hebrew Ecclus. 51:23-25). In the case of four psalms the acrostic arrangement is impaired. Psalm 25 omits vav and kof, duplicates resh, and adds an extra pe at the end. Psalm 34, too, lacks vav and has supernumerary pe. The ayin is missing in Psalm 37, and the nun in Psalms 9-10 (originally a unity) and Nahum 1 are unmistakable torsos of originally alphabetic compositions, but are too mutilated to permit reconstruction in full.

The types of alphabetic structure vary. By far the most frequent is when the initial successive letters head each full verse (Ps. 25, 34, 115; Prov. 31:10-31; Lam. 1, 2, 4). Sometimes they begin alternate verses (Ps. 9-10 [?], 37) and sometimes each half verse (Ps. 111; 112; Nah. 1 [?]). The most sophisticated and elaborate arrangement appears in Psalm 119 and Lamentations 3 in which each stanza comprises eight verses in the former and three verses in the latter, all commencing with the same letter. The impact of the acrostic principle is also present in Lamentations 5 with its 22 verses, even though no abece-diary is used. Whatever the age of the individual alphabetic compositions, it is clear that the phenomenon cannot be used as a criterion for the dating of biblical texts. The word and sentence acrostic is found in at least five works in Akkadian literature. Although the only two dated examples come from the seventh and sixth centuries B.c.E., there is no reason to doubt that the principle was not in vogue in Mesopotamia much earlier. Moreover, since the traditional order of the alphabetic signs is now known to have been fixed no later than the 14th century B.c.E., there is every likelihood of its early employment in Israel in literary compositions.

It is not possible to decide what considerations influenced the choice of this particular device. Sometimes it seems to provide a connecting link between variations upon a single theme. At other times it apparently serves to impose an external order and system upon material that lacks inner coherence or logical development. Frequently, it must have been used as a mnemonic aid in a pedagogic or didactic context as well as in a cultic-liturgical situation. For instance, it would be particularly suited to the rote recitation of moralistic instruction, divine attributes, and hymns of praise and thanksgiving. A magical or mystical purpose can be ruled out in the biblical period, but purely aesthetic considerations might occasionally have been at work. Finally, it is not at all improbable that the arrangement of literary material in alphabetic sequence from beginning to end would signify the striving for comprehensiveness in the expression of an emotion or idea.


ln later usage the letters, syllables, or words are arranged in such a way that their combinations have meaning independent of their meaning in the general context (and not necessarily alphabetically). There are three main types of acrostics: Akrostikhon – in the narrowest meaning of the word, when the letters (or syllables or words) that are to be joined are consistently found at the beginning of each line, verse, sentence, or paragraph; Telestikhon – when they are at the end; Mezos-tikhon – when they are in the middle. With regard to content there are two types of acrostic. One is alphabetic when the first letters (or last in telestikhon, etc.) of each line (or verse, etc.) combine to produce the alphabet or the alphabet in reverse (in Hebrew called tashrak p""ltr) or regular and reverse in turn (atbash, t"arX; atbah n"30X; tashab a"tXr) and the like. There are also variations, e.g., entire works in which every word begins with the same letter. The other is an acrostic of words, in which the combinations produce a word or complete sentence.

Originally, the acrostic fulfilled several important functions. It simplified learning by heart and prevented mistakes, deletions, and additions. Furthermore, it preserved the name of the author, which often appeared as an acrostic. One Midrash (pr 46) attributes an acrostic to Moses: "And Moses came and they began (Psalm 92) with the letters of his name mttfn [Oi'V] Ttt Ti»J»." According to another Midrash (Song R. 1:7), Solomon composed an alphabetic acrostic. On the other hand, the view (appearing in the Pesikta Rabbati) that the Bible also contains acrostics of words is doubtful. Following the model of the Bible are the acrostics in The Wisdom of Ben Sira (li, 36-54; although somewhat corrupted).

It is not known whether there was a special Hebrew name for the acrostic. In a later period it was called a siman ("sign"), and then a hatimah ("signature"). Alphabetic acrostics had names which were derived from the Greek aXfaprprapia (e.g., Eccles. R. 7:7, 18; in the parallel in Ruth R. 6:6 mistakenly Al-fanterin (I’lJIlsVx), and especially: Alfa Beta, Alfabeta, etc.). Under Arabic influence alphabetic acrostics began to be called fibetim (singular: fibeta), dropping the first syllable which was thought to be the (Arabic) definite article (al-). These foreign names may indicate that the acrostics in prayers and piyyutim were not a direct continuation of biblical acrostics but were influenced by those which had become part of Roman, Byzantine, Syrian, and Arabic literature (though in certain aspects it was the Hebrew piyyut that influenced the Syrian and Byzantine and not the reverse). In any event the acrostic in its different forms is often found in the prayers and piyyutim. An alphabetic prayer is found in the tractate Soferim (19:9). Other examples are the prayers: "1371 Vila 1113 Vx" (Alphabet), and "…rpriH-ni? 1TS1 natf [or: r^ri] rqsri" (Tashrak) and others. The paytanim, beginning with Yose b. Yose, Yannai, Kal-lir, R. Saadiah Gaon, and others, employed acrostics, which became increasingly longer and more complicated. The letters of the alphabet were repeated in differing and unusual combinations. The names of the paytanim, their fathers, place of residence, pseudonyms, often combined with blessings, verses from the Bible, etc., were woven into the piyyut in acrostic form. The poets of Spain, Solomon ibn Gabirol, Judah Halevi, Abraham Ibn Ezra, and others, followed the paytanim in this, especially in their liturgical poetry. The acrostic found its way into prose writing, especially rhymed prose, letters, introductions to various works, etc. An example is the beginning of the famous letter of Hisdai ibn Shaprut to the king of the Khazars which was written at his behest by Menahem b. Saruk. The introduction of R. Shabbetai Donnolo to his Sefer Hakhmoni includes the acrostic ‘"iVUH XW pjn ,0ni3X 13 DTiXK iViUn [i.e., Oria]". In the Middle Ages, and even later, entire works were composed in which every word began with the same letter. The most famous of these is "Elef Alfin" ("A thousand alefs"), attributed to Abraham Bedersi. A common form of acrostic is when the initial letters of the first few words of a work spell the name of God. Kabbalistic literature considered acrostics, like all combinations of letters and syllables, to be important. The use of acrostics, already criticized by R. Isaac Arama in the 15th century, has continued to the present but only as a diversion.


(1845-1906), Hungarian historian and writer. Born in Nagy-Karoly, Acsady took his doctorate of philosophy in Budapest. He wrote many novels and plays and was a regular contributor to the Hungarian press. His main importance lies, however, in the field of historiography. Acsady’s work as an historian is marked by his anti-feudal and progressive views. In his novel Fridenyi bankja ("Fridenyi’s Bank," 1882; new edition: 1968) he criticized the dominant role of money in the contemporary world. His liberal outlook is also stressed in his A magyar birodalom tortenete ("History of the Hungarian Empire"), and especially in his most important work A magyar jobbagysag tortenete ("History of Hungarian Serfhood"), which was translated into Slovakian and Russian. Acsady’s main interests were economic conditions in the 16th and 17th centuries and the fate of the common people. He advised the Jews to unite with the peasants against the antisemi-tism of the lower and middle classes, and he fought constantly for equal rights for the Jews of Hungary. In 1883 he published Jewish and Non-Jewish Hungarians after the Emancipation, and in 1894 he helped to found the Hungarian Jewish Literary Society. After World War 11 a street in Budapest was named after him and a plaque dedicated in his memory.


French royalist and antisemitic movement formed after the *Dreyfus affair, mainly active between 1896 and 1939. The doctrine of its principal theorist Charles *Maurras, termed "integral nationalism," was the radical expression of the conception of organic national unity. Prominent among its leaders were the writer Leon *Daudet, and the historian Jacques Bainville. The party organ, also named L’Action frangaise, was established as a daily in 1908. The Action Frangaise took pride in having reactivated anti-semitism in France, alleging that the Jews were one of the principal agents of national disintegration and economic and moral corruption. They were part of an evil plot hatched by a would-be "confederation of the Four Estates," which, beside the Jews, included Protestants, Freemasons, and foreigners in general. These were allegedly using the slogans of liberty and revolution to mask mercenary interests and the political fragmentation of national life by the parties. The Action Frangaise waged scurrilous campaigns against economic enterprises. It hence attacked meteques ("foreigners") according to Maurras’ formula "not to divide, but to define." The Semite in particular was singled out as basically barbarian; to combat him was a proof of incorruptibility and concern with national interests. Even so, the Action Franfaise rejected the idea of racist anti-semitism as absurd.

The importance of the Action Franfaise lies in the respectability of some of its leaders and the influence they exercised on certain circles of French officers between the two world wars. The antisemitic legislation enacted by the Vichy government after the fall of France in World War ii was directly inspired by ideas of the Action Franfaise and its program of excluding the Jew from French society and politics. The last issue of L’Action frangaise appeared in Lyons in August 1944. Its spirit has been kept alive by Fascist-inclined and racist publications, such as the weeklies Aspect de la France, Rivarol, and La Nation frangaise.


(1921-1994), Hungarian author and journalist. Aczel wrote the prizewinning novel A szabadsag arnyeka-ban ("In the Shadow of Freedom," 1948). A member of the circle of Imre Nagy, he fled to Paris after the suppression of the 1956 revolution and edited the radical emigrant periodical Irodalmi Ujsag.


Townlet in Vojvodina, Serbia, until 1920 in (Austro-) Hungary. Jews came there from German-speaking areas; they also spoke Yiddish and later Hungarian. They were allowed to settle in the late 17th century in order to repopulate the southern provinces devastated during the Turkish wars, but were forbidden to use Hebrew or Yiddish in official documents, testaments, and pinkasim. The first rabbis were Aaron Acker (d. 1837) and Jacob Heilprin. During the 1848-49 troubles, when Serbia sent volunteers to help the Slav populations in Hungary, a Serbian troop occupied Ada and took 60 Jews -including Rabbi Heilprin – to Senta where they were all murdered. Ada remained one of the dozen or so Orthodox communities along the Thissa River following the split between the Neologist majority and Orthodox minority in 1868/69. They maintained talmud torah schools and formed an Association of Orthodox Communities that worked in close cooperation with the Neologist Federation of Jewish Communties in Belgrade. The synagogue was built in 1896. In 1925 there were 452 Jews in Ada, but many left for bigger towns. During World War 11 Ada was occupied by Hungary and a concentration camp was established there. Of its 350 Jews in 1940, only 59 remained after the war, when the community was temporarily reestablished. Most subsequently left for Israel.


(1801-1874), halakhic authority and kabbalist. Born in Tripoli and orphaned at an early age, Abraham was raised by his grandfather, Nathan Adadi, an outstanding scholar. In 1818 the family emigrated to Safed, where Adadi studied and was occasionally required to travel abroad as an emissary of the community. While in Leghorn in 1837 he heard of the great earthquake in Safed, and therefore changed his plans and returned to Tripoli, where he served as rabbi and dayyan and maintained a bet midrash. Some time after 1865, Adadi returned to Safed, remaining there for the rest of his life. Adadi paid particular attention to the local minhagim ("customs"), especially of Tripoli and Safed, and also of places he visited. His books incorporate much historical information, particularly about Tripoli. In this he was doubtless influenced by Abraham *H alfon, his greatest Tripolitanian contemporary. Adadi’s works include: Ha-Shomer Emet (Leghorn, 1849), primarily halakhot and customs concerning Torah scrolls; Va-Yikra Avraham (Leghorn, 1865), responsa, etc.; Zeh ha-Kelal on talmudic methodology; and Makom she-Nahagu, customs omitted from Ha-Shomer Emet. The rest of his works, including talmudic novellae and sermons, are still in manuscript (Ben-Zvi Institute, Jerusalem). An original poem in praise of Safed appears at the beginning of his Ha-Shomer Emet.


(Hebtmp2C48_thumb"ornament" or [according to the Arabic]"morning"; cf. Heb. personal names: Adaiah, Adiel), name of wife of *Lamech and wife of *Esau. Adah was one of the two wives of Lamech (Gen. 4:19-20). To her and to his other wife Zillah, Lamech recited his song (Gen. 4:230".). Her children, *Jabal and *Jubal, were the first to practice, respectively, pastoral pursuits and music, thus inaugurating a new stage of human progress. Her importance for the genealogy in Genesis 4 is derived from this fact, because Lamech’s wives are the only women mentioned there. In the account in Genesis 5:28 ff. there is no mention of Adah, Zillah, and their children. Noah, the firstborn of Lamech, appears instead, together with other sons and daughters, whose names are not mentioned.

Adah was the wife of Esau (Gen. 36:2) and the daughter of Elon (but cf. Gen. 26:34, where the daughter of Elon, who married Esau, is Basemath). Esau, who is also called *Edom (ibid. 36:1), and was probably the patriarch of Edom, married Adah, a Hittite, who was a native of Canaan. This account provides information on a Hittite element in Edom, a fact unknown from other sources, except in connection with other wives of Esau (Judith and Basemath, Gen. 26:34; cf. 28:9). Nonetheless, this information is difficult to fit in. On the other hand, Adah’s Canaanite origin is probable, due to the wide range of nationalities included in the term Canaan. Adah was the mother of Eliphaz and his children, who were *allufim and counted as her descendants (Gen. 36:11-12, 15-16) rather than those of Lamech.


(1868-1939), Polish literary historian and folklorist. Born in Warsaw, Adalberg studied in a number of European capitals. His main work, a compendium of Polish proverbs, sayings, and proverbial phrases, Ksifg przystow, przypowiesci i wyrazen przystowiowych polskich (1889-94), remains the most extensive collection ever made in this field. Its 40,000 entries include both folk proverbs and quotations from major Polish writers of the 16th to 18th centuries that have become proverbs. For this work Adalberg was rewarded with membership of the philological section of the Cracow Academy of Science. He also translated and annotated 580 Yiddish proverbs drawn from the collection of Ignatz *Bernstein. This was published in the Polish ethnographical journal Wista (vol. 4, 1890) and was also issued as a separate booklet. From 1918 Adalberg was an adviser on Jewish matters to the Polish Ministry of Education and Religious Affairs, and was thus able to do much for Jewish communal and educational institutions. He committed suicide when the Nazis occupied Warsaw.


tmp2C49_thumbthe first man and progenitor of the human race.

The Documentary Hypothesis distinguishes two conflicting stories about the making of man in Scripture (for a contrary view, see U. Cassuto, From Adam to Noah, pp. 71 ff.). In the first account of Creation in the Bible (attributed by critics to the Priestly narration; Gen. 1) Adam was created in God’s image (verse 27), as the climax of a series of Divine creative acts, and was given dominion over the rest of creation (verses 28-30). In the second story (attributed by critics to the J or Yahwist strand; Gen. 2-3), after the completion of heaven and earth, God fashioned "the man" (ha-adam) from dust of the ground (ha-adamah), breathed life into his nostrils, and placed him in the Garden of Eden to be caretaker. Permission was given to eat freely from any tree of the Garden except, under penalty of death, from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Bad. In order that the man might not be alone but would have appropriate aid, God formed the various animals and had the man determine what they should be called. The man gave names to all the animals, but found among them no suitable help. God then put the man to sleep, extracted one of his ribs, and fashioned it into a woman, and presented her to the man who found her eminently satisfactory and congenial. The naked pair had no feeling of shame until the serpent seduced the woman to eat the fruit of the forbidden tree. The woman shared the fruit with her husband with the result that they became aware of their nakedness and hid from God. As punishment for this transgression, the serpent was condemned to crawl on its belly and eat dust. The woman was sentenced to the pangs of childbirth, a craving for her man, and subjection to him. The man, for his part, for listening to his wife and for violating the prohibition, was destined to toil and sweat in order to wrest a bare living from an accursed and hostile soil until his return to the dust whence he came. Perpetual enmity was established between snake and man. God then made skin tunics (better: "tunics for the skin") and clothed the man and woman. The man had now become like one of the divine beings "knowing good and bad" (Gen. 3:22, i.e., everything; cf. Gen. 31:24; Lev. 5:4; 11 Sam. 13:22; Isa. 41:23). To keep the man from taking and eating of the Tree of Life and thereby acquiring the other quality that distinguished the divine beings, immortality, God expelled him from the Garden of Eden and barred access to the Tree of Life by means of the *cherubim and the flaming sword. Next one reads that "the man" had experience of his wife *Eve, who bore him *Cain and later *Abel (Gen. 4:1-2), and further on that "Adam," at the age of 130 years, sired *Seth by his wife (4:25; 5:3), after which he lived on for another eight centuries without report of further events, except that he "begot sons and daughters" and died at the age of 930 (5:4-5).

The presence of the article before the word adam in Genesis 2:7-4:1 militates against construing it as a proper name. However, in 4:25, and also in 5:1-5, the article is dropped and the word becomes Adam. The masorah takes advantage of the ambiguity of the consonantal spelling (l"dm) which can mean "to/for the man" or "to/for Adam," depending on the vocalization, to introduce the proper name Adam into Genesis 2:20 and 3:17, 21, contrary to the import of the passage. Similarly, the Septuagint and Vulgate begin at Genesis 2:19 to translate ha-adam as the proper name Adam.

The only further mention of Adam in the Bible occurs in the genealogical table of 1 Chronicles 1:1. It is moot whether adam in ke-adam of Hosea 6:7 and Job 31:33, and benei adam of Deuteronomy 32:8, is to be taken as the proper name. In the apocryphal books, however, there are several probable allusions to Adam and the creation story (Ecclus. 17:1; 49:16; Tob. 8:6; Wisd. Sol. 2:23; 9:2; 10:1).

The etymology of the word adam is ambiguous. The feminine form adamah designates the ground or soil, and the play on the two forms adam and adamah in Genesis 2:7 suggests for adam the meaning "earthling." The root mx (‘dm) is also connected with the color "red," which might apply to the color of the soil from which man was formed. The word adamu is used in Akkadian for "blood," adamatu for "black blood" in pathological conditions, and the plural adamatu for "dark, red earth [used as dye]." The word admu/atmu ("child") probably has no relation to adam but is rather to be connected with a root wtm and related to Hebrew yatom ("orphan"). In Old South Arabic ‘dm has the meaning "serf." The occurrence of ‘dm as the apparent theophorous element in few personal names such as cbd ‘dm ("servant of ‘dm"; mt, Obed-Edom, 11 Sam. 6:10ff.), suggests a deity dm, but there is little additional direct evidence for this. In an Akkadian synonym list the word adamu is equivalent to an "important, noble person." The personal names A-da-mu, A-dam-u also appear in Old Akkadian and Old Babylonian (Chicago Assyrian Dictionary, 1, part 1 (1964), 95, s.v. adamu B; cf. also W von Soden, Akkadisches Handwo-erterbuch, 1 (1965), 10).

In the Aggadah

Adam was formed from a mixture of water and earth, as is implied in Genesis 2:7. According to Greek mythology too, Prometheus formed men from water and earth (Apollodorus, 1:7, 1); and Hesiod (Opera et Dies, 61) relates that Hephaestus kneaded earth and water and made woman. The ancient Egyptians also believed that "man was formed from miry and swampy land" (Diodorus 1:43, 2).

There is no reference in the existing texts of the Septua-gint to the statement of the aggadah (Mekh. 60:14) that the translators of the Bible changed Genesis 1:26 from the plural "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness," to "I will make man in my likeness and image" in order to remove any suggestion of anthropomorphic polytheism. The aggadists were actually more concerned with possible polytheistic interpretations than with the suggestion of anthropomorphism, the belief in anthropomorphism being widespread in both Hellenistic and philosophical works (e.g., among the Epicureans). In any event, many of the aggadists attempted to remove these anthropomorphisms. Some of them explain, "in His image" as meaning "with the dignity of his Maker" (see Tanh. Pekudei 2; Gen. R. 11:2).

In the creation of the universe, whatever was created later had dominion over what preceded it, and Adam and Eve were "created after everything in order to have dominion over everything" (Gen. R. 19:4). They were "created last in order that they should rule over all creation, and that all creatures should fear them and be under their control" (Num. R. 12:4). The subjection of the creatures is also greatly stressed in Adam 37-39; Apocalypsis Mosis, 10-12. Another reason for man’s being created last was "that he should immediately enter the banqueting hall (everything having already been prepared for him). The matter may be likened to an emperor’s building a palace, consecrating it, preparing the feast, and only then inviting the guests" (Tosef. Sanh. 8:9). On the other hand, Adam was created last, so that "should he become conceited, he could be told, ‘The gnat was created before you’" (ibid. 8:8). Adam alone, of all living things, was created "to stand upright like the ministering angels" (Gen. R. 8:11; cf. H ag. 16a). Both Adam and Eve were created "fully developed. Adam and Eve were created as adults 20 years of age" (Gen. R. 14:7). In fact, everything created, "the sun and the moon, the stars and the planets, all were created fully developed, all the works of creation being brought into existence in their completed state" (Num. R. 12:8). The same opinion was held by Philo and by a number of Greek and Roman scholars (Dion Chrysosto-mus, 36:59).

Thales, "father of philosophers," used to say, "Every thing that exists is very beautiful, being the work of God" (Diogenes Laertius, 1:35). In the same vein, Philo maintained (Op., 47:136-41) that Adam was a perfect creature. The aggadists exalt the beauty of Adam, saying, "The ball of Adam’s heel outshone the glory of the sun: how much more so the brightness of his face" for "Adam was created for the service of the Holy One, and the orb of the sun for the service of mankind"

The rabbis interpret Genesis 1:27 to mean that Adam was created as a hermaphrodite (Er. 18a; Gen. R. 8:1; cf. also Jub. 2:14; 3:8). He was created on New Year’s Day, the first of Tishri, and all that is related of him occurred on that very day. In the first hour his dust was assembled; in the second he was rough-hewn; in the third his limbs were articulated; in the fourth the soul was breathed into him; in the fifth he stood erect; in the sixth he gave names to all creatures; in the seventh Eve was brought to him; in the eighth they begot Cain and Abel; in the ninth they were forbidden to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil; in the tenth they sinned; in the eleventh sentence was passed; and in the twelfth they were driven out of Eden (Sanh. 38b; cf. also Lev. R. 29:1).

When Adam was to be created, the angels were consulted. Some favored his creation for the love and mercy he would show; others were opposed to it because of the falsehood and strife he would stir up. In the end, the Holy One decided to create man (Gen. R. 8:5; Mid. Ps. to 1:22). The angels were filled with such awe at his creation that they wished to worship him, whereupon Adam pointed upward (pdRE 10; Tanh. Pekudei 3), or, according to another version, God caused a deep sleep to fall upon him and the angels realized his limitations (Gen. R. 8:10). All the angels were ordered to bow down to him and they did so, all except *Satan, who was hurled into the abyss and conceived a lasting hatred for Adam (pdRE 13). This myth of Satan’s fall is to be found in the Apocryphal books, e.g., Adam 12-17.

It is characteristic of the book of Genesis that it gives the history of its principals up to a certain stage in their lives and then leaves them, taking up the story of their successors. Likewise, in the case of Adam, the Bible gives his story up to his expulsion from the Garden of Eden, and then deals with the succeeding generations, though Adam lived on for many years. No account is given of how Adam familiarized himself with the strange new world, which lacked those ideal conditions to which he had been accustomed. The aggadah, to some extent, attempts to fill the gap. It relates that "when the sun set (after he was driven out) darkness began to fall. Adam was terrified. thinking, ‘The serpent will come to bite me.’ The Holy One made available for him two flints (or, two stones) which he struck, one against the other, producing light" (Pes. 54a; Gen. R. 11:2). This subject is also dealt with by Adam and Eve 2:1, which relates that "the Lord God sent diverse seeds by Michael the archangel and gave them to Adam and showed him how to work and till the ground that they might have fruit, by which they and their generations might live." This is greatly developed in the Christian Adam books, the Cave of Treasures and the Conflict of Adam and Eve. This aggadah also hints at the answer to another question, how human civilization developed. This theme, especially the origin of light, the catalyst of all human development, greatly occupied Greek scholars. According to other aggadot, darkness itself and the seasonal change to winter terrified Adam until he became familiar with the order of the universe – sunset and sunrise, long days and short days (Av. Zar. 8a).

When Adam sinned, he lost his splendor. As a result of his sin, all things lost their perfection "though they had been created in their fullness," (Gen. R. 11:2; 12:6). Like Philo, the aggadists held that the beauty of the generations was slowly diminishing. All other people "compared to Sarah, are like apes compared to a man; Sarah compared with Eve, is like an ape compared to man, as was Eve compared to Adam" (bb 58a).

Satan selected the serpent as his tool because of its being the most subtle of beasts and the nearest to man in form, having been endowed with hands and feet (Gen. R. 19:1; 20:5). With regard to the identification of the tree of good and evil, the vine, the wheat, the citron, and the fig are suggested. According to this last view, it was because the fig tree had served as the source of Adam’s sin that it subsequently provided him with the leaves to cover his nakedness, the consciousness of which was the direct result of that sin (Ber. 40a; Gen. R. 15:7; compare the Syriac Apocalypse of Adam (ed., Renan; 1853), 32). Adam was sent forth from the Garden of Eden in this world; whether he was also sent forth from the Eden of the next world is disputed (Gen. R. 21:7). With Adam’s sin, the divine presence withdrew from this world, returning only with the building of the Tabernacle (pdRK 1). Adam learnt of the power of repentance from Cain. When Cain said to him, "I repented and have been forgiven," Adam beat his face and cried out, "So great is the power of repentance and I knew it not." Whereupon he sang the 90th Psalm, the Midrash interpreting its second verse as, "It is good to make confession to the Lord" (Gen. R. 22:13). In the Life of Adam and Eve, however, Adam and Eve’s repentance after the expulsion from the garden is described at length (Adam 1-11). Adam was given the Noachian Laws (Sanh. 56b) and was enjoined to observe the Sabbath (Mid. Ps. to 92:6). He would have been given the whole Torah if he had not sinned (Gen. R. 24:5; 21:7). He was the first to pray for rain (Hul. 60b) and to offer sacrifice (Av. Zar. 8a). During the time he was separated from his wife, before he begot Seth, he gave birth to demons (Er. 18b; Gen. R. 20:11). The Zohar (7:34; 3:19) states that *Lilith, a demon, was the wife of Adam before the creation of Eve.

Medieval Jewish Philosophy

In Hellenistic and medieval Jewish philosophy Adam is often regarded as a prototype of mankind, and Genesis 2:8-3:24, interpreted as an allegory on the human condition. In spite of their predominant interest in the allegorical interpretation of the creation of Adam and his stay in the Garden of Eden, most Jewish philosophers appear to accept the historicity of the biblical account. For them the biblical story of Adam has both a literal and allegorical meaning.

Philo, following a Platonic model, sees in the twofold account of the creation of Adam a description of the creation of two distinct men, the heavenly man, created in the image of God (Gen. 1:27), and the earthly man, formed out of the dust of the earth (Gen. 2:7). The heavenly man is incorporeal. The earthly man is a composite of corporeal and incorporeal elements, of body and mind (Philo, 1 l.a. 12). Philo maintains that it is the mind of man and not his body which is in the image of God (Philo, Op. 23). The earthly Adam excelled all subsequent men both in intellectual ability and physical appearance, and attained the "very limit of human happiness" (Philo, Op. 3). But Adam did not remain forever at this level. Through eating from the forbidden tree of the knowledge of good and evil he brought upon himself a "life of mortality and wretchedness in lieu of that of immortality and bliss" (Philo, Op. 53). Philo interprets the eating from the forbidden tree allegorically as the indulgence in physical pleasures. Because Adam succumbed to his physical passions, his understanding descended from the higher level of knowledge to the lower level of opinion. While Philo at times does accept the literal interpretation of certain elements in the story, he generally rejects the literal meaning entirely and interprets all the elements of the story allegorically. Adam becomes the symbolic representation of mind; Eve, the representation of sense-perception; the serpent, the representation of passion; and the tree of knowledge, the representation of prudence or opinion. Though Philo did not exert any direct influence upon the medieval Jewish philosophers, there are many similarities between his conception of Adam ha-Rishon and that of medieval Jewish philosophy. The similarities in the descriptions of the perfections of the first man may have their origin in the midrashic descriptions of Adam, while the similarities in the interpretation of his sin probably result from the philosophic concerns common to Philo and the medievals.

*Judah Halevi maintains that Adam was perfect in body and mind. In addition to the loftiest intellect ever possessed by a human being, Adam was endowed with the "divine power" (ha-koah ha-Elohi), that special faculty which, according to Halevi, enables man to achieve communion with God. This "divine power," passed down through various descendants of Adam to the people of Israel, is that which distinguishes the people of Israel from all other peoples (Kuzari, 1:95).

*Maimonides explains that when the Bible records that Adam was created "in the image of God" it refers to the creation of the human intellect, man’s defining characteristic, which resembles the divine intellect, rather than to the creation of the body. Unlike Halevi, Maimonides believes that communion with God can be achieved through the development of the intellect, and that no special faculty is necessary. Thus, Maimonides emphasizes the intellectual perfection of Adam. Before the sin Adam’s intellect was developed to its fullest capacity, and he devoted himself entirely to the contemplation of the truths of physics and metaphysics. Adam’s sin consisted in his turning away from contemplation to indulge in physical pleasures to which he was drawn by his imagination and desires. As a result of his sin, Adam became occupied with controlling his appetites, and consequently his capacity for contemplation was impaired. His practical reason which before the sin had lain dormant was now activated, and he began to acquire practical rather than theoretical knowledge, a knowledge of values rather than of facts, of good and evil rather than of truth and falsehood, and of ethics and politics rather than of physics and metaphysics. It is clear that for Maimonides practical wisdom is inferior to theoretical wisdom, and that, therefore, the activation of Adam’s practical reason at the expense of his theoretical reason was a punishment (Guide, 1:2).

Maimonides interprets various Midrashim on the story of Adam and the Garden of Eden allegorically in accordance with his interpretation of Adam’s sin as the succumbing to physical passion. The Midrash describes the serpent as a camel ridden by Samael. According to Maimonides the serpent represents the imaginative faculty, while Samael, or the evil inclination, represents the appetitive faculty. Maimonides suggests that in the midrashic description of the tree of life in Genesis Rabbah 15:6 the tree represents physics and its branches metaphysics. The tree of knowledge, on the other hand, represents ethics or practical wisdom rather than physics and metaphysics. Instead of eating from the tree of life, i.e., devoting himself to the study of physics and metaphysics which would have enabled him to attain immortality, Adam ate from the forbidden tree; he followed his imagination and succumbed to his passions, thereby impairing his capacity for the contemplation of truth, and acquiring the capacity for the acquisition of a knowledge of ethics (Guide, 2:30).

Joseph *Albo maintains that Adam, as the prototype of mankind, is the choicest of all the creatures of the sublunar world and the purpose of the creation because he is the only creature that has a knowledge of God. All other creatures exist for his sake, and he has a dominion over them. Albo, too, interprets the story of the Garden of Eden allegorically, regarding it as a "symbolic allusion to man’s fortune in the world" (Sefer ha-Ikkarim, 1:11). In his interpretation Adam represents mankind; the Garden of Eden, the world; the tree of life, the Torah; and the serpent, the evil inclination. The placing of Adam in the garden, in the midst of which stands the tree of life, symbolizes the fact that man is placed in the world in order to observe the commandments of the Torah. In the banishment of Adam from the Garden of Eden after he ate from the forbidden tree Albo sees an allusion to the punishment that will befall man if he disobeys the Divine commandments.

In Christian Tradition

Adam as the progenitor of the human race and as the type of humanity as such, plays a far greater role in Christian theological thought than in classical Judaism, since the former uses the account in Genesis 1-2 (and especially the story of Adam’s sin and expulsion from Paradise) as a basis for its doctrine of man and his relation to God. Endowed with many extraordinary qualities as the crown of God’s creation (e.g., perfect righteousness, sanctifying grace, absence of concupiscence, viz. evil inclination, immortality, etc.), he lost these at his fall ("original sin") and transmitted his fallen and corrupted nature to all his posterity. Only by the coming of Jesus, the "Second Adam," was humanity restored to its original grandeur and perfection "for as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive" (1 Cor. 15:22). As the heavenly Adam succeeded the earthly Adam, so humanity of the flesh will become a spiritual humanity (1 Cor. 15:44-49). The teaching of Paul greatly influenced Augustine and later Calvin in their formulations of the doctrine on original sin, implying as it does the innate corruption of human nature.

According to one Christian tradition, Adam is buried not in the Machpelah cave at Hebron but under the Calvary in the Holy Sepulcher, Jerusalem, so that the redemptive blood of Jesus shed at the crucifixion, flowed on his grave. In the Greek Orthodox Church a feast in honor of the parents of humanity, Adam and Eve, is kept on the Sunday preceding Christmas.

In Islamic Legend

Adam is more favorably presented in the Koran than in the Bible. The Adamic legend, as Muhammad related it, is as follows: Allah created Adam to become his regent (caliph) on earth (Sura 2:28) and made a covenant with him (Sura 20:114; cf. Hos. 6:7 and Sanh. 38b). At first the angels opposed it, fearing that man would evoke evil and bloodshed. However, Allah endowed Adam with the knowledge of the names of all things. The angels, who do not know these names, recognize Adam’s superiority and pay him homage. Only Iblis (Gr. diabolos, the Devil) revolts, claiming that he who is born of fire should not bow before one who is born of dust, whereupon Allah expels Iblis from Paradise. Adam and Eve are forbidden to eat the fruit of a tree, but Saytan (Satan) appears and whispers in their ears: Allah has forbidden this tree to you, so that you will not live eternally like the angels (Sura 7:19). They eat from the tree, become aware of their nakedness, and cover themselves with the leaves of Eden. Allah proclaims eternal enmity between Man and Satan. Then Adam repents for his sin.

*Geiger recognized that the concept that God had consulted the angels and that voices had been raised against the creation of man belongs to an old aggadah (Sanh. 38a-b; Gen. R. 8:1). The fact that the Koran knew nothing of the serpent but placed Satan in its place points perhaps to Christian influence. Umayya ibn Abi’l-Salt, Muhammad’s contemporary, knew of the serpent in connection with Adam’s disobedience, but not the Satan.

Later Muslim interpreters and collectors of legends completed the story of the Koran from the Bible, aggadah, and their own poetic elaboration: Allah sent his angels, Gabriel and Michael, down to Earth in order to fetch dust for the creation of man; but the Earth rejected them and the Angel of Death forcibly took dust from the surface (surface of the earth in Arabic, Adtm, thus Adam). Adam was created from red, white, and black dust – hence the various skin colorings of mankind. The dust for the head came from the H aram in Mecca; the chest, the sanctuary in Jerusalem; the loins, Yemen; the feet, H ejaz; the right hand, the East; and the left hand, the West. For a long time the body was lifeless and without a soul. Suddenly the spirit penetrated the body, Adam sneezed and exclaimed with the angels, "Praise be to Allah."

The notion of the homogeneity of the human race, as expressed in the legend which says that dust was gathered from the whole Earth to create Adam’s body, is found in the Talmud (Sanh. 38a). Rav, however, suggested the following: dust was taken for the body from Babylon; the head, Erez Israel; and the remaining limbs, the rest of the countries (Sanh. 38b). The idea that in the beginning Adam lay still as a figure of clay without a soul (golem), also originates from an aggadah (bibliography and interpretation in Bacher, Pal Amor, 2 (1896), 50-51; in addition, Mid. Hag. to Gen. 2:7). The aggadah and the Islamic legend both share the belief that God was the first couple’s "best man," and that the forbidden fruit was wheat. This is the reason why Gabriel taught Adam agriculture: wheat banished man from Paradise, but wheat also introduced him to the earthly world. The aggadah is interested in calculating just how the hours of Adam’s first day were spent (Sanh. 38b). That Adam did not stay an entire day in Paradise is derived from Psalms 49:13: "But man abides ["spends the night"] not in honor." According to the Islamic legend, Adam foresaw the future generations and their prophets. In the aggadah there is also a most impressive description of how one generation after the other – with its great men and sages – file past Adam (Sanh. 38b; Av. Zar. 5a; arn 31:91; Gen. R. 24:2; PR 23:115).

Nor is there any doubt as to the reciprocity between the Islamic legend and the late Midrash. Thus, for instance, the specific statement that Adam was formed from red, white, and black earth – hence the differences in the complexion of mankind – is a further development of both the late aggadah (Targ. Yer., Gen. 2:7; PdRE 11) and the Islamic legend. The Koran (2:28-32) recognizes Adam’s superior status in that he knew the names of the creatures and things. Familiar is the Islamic oath: "By Allah who taught the names to Adam" (see Gen. R. 17:4). Pirkei de-R. Eliezer 16 says – under Islamic influence – that Samael came to Eden riding on the serpent; what the serpent said, all came from Samael (similar, Mid. Hag. to Gen. 3:1-5). The following example appears to be significant concerning the mutual influence of aggadah and Islamic legend: Genesis Rabbah 19:8 cites Genesis 2:17: "On the day on which you eat from it, you will die," in connection with Psalms 90:10: "The number of our years is seventy," and thus interprets: "One Lord’s Day, that is, 1,000 years [Ps. 90:4] was allotted to Adam, but he only lived 930 years and gave 70 years to each of his descendants." Pirkei de-R. Eliezer 19 relates that Adam gave 70 years of his life to David. According to Tabari (1:156), Adam let David have 40 of his own years.

Illuminated Manuscripts

Adam and Eve often appear in illuminated manuscripts, especially in the scenes of the Temptation and the period after the Fall. Among them is the Hebrew manuscript (British Museum Add. 11639), where the serpent is shown with a human face. This indicates the influence of the Jewish legend, which relates that before the Temptation of Eve, the serpent had wings, hands, and feet and was the size of a camel. Other illustrations are more conventional in examples such as the British Museum Haggadah (Ms. Or. 2884) and the Haggadah of Sarajevo, but it is interesting to note that the non-Jewish manuscripts such as Octateuch in Istanbul (Serail, Codex 8), a Bible Moralisee in the British Museum (Add. 15248), and Hugo van der Goes’ diptych in Vienna are influenced by this Jewish legendary approach.

In the Arts

The story of Adam and Eve is frequently exploited in Western literature because of its theological association with the Christian doctrine of Original Sin. The oldest surviving treatment is the 12th-century Anglo-Norman Jeu d’Adam. In medieval English, French, and Spanish miracle plays Adam is represented as a precursor of Jesus. An early Protestant interpretation was Der farend Schueler im Paradeiss (1550), a comedy by the German dramatist and poet Hans Sachs. The drama LAdamo (1613), by the Italian actor-playwright Giambattista Andreini, probably influenced the English Puritan John *Milton, whose Paradise Lost (1667) depicts Adam as a free agent overcome by Satan, but sustained by his belief in ultimate redemption. This post-medieval conception of the first man also permeates two Dutch works, the Adamus Exul (1601) of Hugo Grotius (Hugo de Groot) and Adam in Ballingschap ("Adam in Exile," 1664) by Joost van den Vondel. Milton’s epic poem was dramatized by John Dryden as The State of Innocence, and Fall of Man (1677), while a Rousseauesque yearning for an imagined Golden Age appears in the drama Der Tod Adams (1757) by the German poet F.G. Klopstock.

Some later plays on this theme are Az ember tragediaja ("The Tragedy of Man," 1862) by the Hungarian writer Imre Madach; Adam Stvoritel ("Adam the Creator," 1927) by the Czech authors Josef and Karel Capek; Nobodaddy (1925) by the American writer Archibald Macleish; and the first part of G.B. Shaw’s Back to Methuselah (1921). The English writer C.M. Doughty based his "sacred drama" Adam Cast Forth (1908) on a Judeo-Arabian legend; while Arno *Nadel wrote his play Adam (1917) on the basis of a fragment by S. *An-ski.

In the sphere of art there are early treatments of the Adam and Eve theme in second-century frescoes at Naples and in the Christian chapel at *Dura-Europos in Syria, as well as on Roman sarcophagi. There are also representations in medieval mosaics and in metal and in both Christian manuscripts and Jewish *Haggadot of the Middle Ages. Scenes from the creation of Adam to the expulsion from Eden were much favored by medieval artists and early sculptures include the reclining Eve by the 12th-century French sculptor Gisle-bertus, and a pair of gaunt figures at Bamberg Cathedral in Germany (c. 1235).

In the 15th century the reawakening feeling for the beauty of the human body gave artists an opportunity to depict the nude within the framework of religious art, particularly in Renaissance Italy. Masaccio’s fresco in the Brancacci Chapel in Santa Maria del Carmine in Florence (1427) shows Adam and Eve leaving the Garden of Eden with their faces buried in their hands in a striking gesture of despair. In the best-known representation of the theme, Michelangelo’s The Creation of Adam (1511) in the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican, the newly created man reclines on a rock while the Creator sweeps by with the heavenly host. Other treatments are those of Raphael and Tintoretto, and Titian’s robustly sensual Fall (1570) in the Prado, Madrid. Adam and Eve were also represented by various masters of the Flemish, Dutch, and German schools, notably the brothers Van Eyck, Albrecht Duerer, Hieronymus Bosch, Lucas Cranach, and Hugo van der Goes. In the painting The Spring by the French artist Nicolas Poussin (1660-64), Adam and Eve are seen in a peaceful landscape resembling a vast park (in the Louvre, Paris). A century later the theme inspired a watercolor by William *Blake, while Marc *Chagall painted a Creation, a Paradise, and an Expulsion from Eden, all remarkable for their iridescent colors. Two modern examples are Rodin’s Eve (1881) for his Gates of Hell, and Jacob *Epstein’s heroic and deliberately primitive Adam (1938).

The earliest musical work of any distinction based on the Bible story is the opera by the German composer, J. A. Theile, Der erschaffene, gefallene und wieder aufgerichtete Mensch (1678). There have been many librettos based on Milton’s Paradise Lost and on its Continental imitations, notably Klopstock’s Der Tod Adams, which was set to music as La Mort d’Adam (1809) by the French composer J.-F. Lesueur. Anton *Rubin-stein’s first oratorio, Das verlorene Paradies (1858), and E. Bos-si’s Italian "poema sinfonico-vocale,"Ilparadisoperduto (1903), were both based on Milton’s epic. Two interesting French compositions were F. David’s L’Eden (1848) and Jules Massenet’s stage music for the "mystere" Eve (1875). The American composer Everett Helm’s Adam and Eve (1951) is a modern adaptation of a 12th-century mystery play.

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