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Zohar, Sefer ha-

Zohar, Sefer ha- (Heb., ‘Book of Splendour’). The central literary work of the kabbalah. The Zohar is a collection of several books, many of which are supposedly the work of Simeon b. Yoḥai (2nd cent. CE). It is a mystical commentary on the Pentateuch and parts of the Hagiographia, and much of it is arranged according to the weekly portions of the Torah. It first appeared in Spain and is thought to have been composed by Moses b. Shem Tov de Leon who lived in the late 13th cent. The Zohar has been crucially important in the development of the kabbalah, and many commentaries have been written on it, the best known being Ketem Paz (1570) by Simeon Labi of Tripoli, Or ha-Hammah (publ. 1896) by Abraham b. Mordecai Azulai, the 18th-cent. Mikdash Melekh of Shalom Buzaglo, and Elijah ben Solomon's Yahel Or.

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