Abraham ben Solomon

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ABRAHAM BEN SOLOMON

ABRAHAM BEN SOLOMON (c. 1400), Oriental biblical exegete, possibly from Yemen. His commentary on the Bible is written in Arabic, but contains some Hebrew excerpts. He makes use of very early midrashic sources, some otherwise unknown, quotes "Simeon b. Yoḥai in the Zohar," and draws upon authorities who preceded him, primarily Saadiah Gaon, Jonah ibn Janaḥ, Nathan b. Jehiel, Tanhum b. Joseph Yerushalmi, and David Kimḥi. In his commentary, Abraham draws linguistic parallels between Arabic, Aramaic, and Hebrew, and includes details of the life of Jews and Arabs in the Orient. Parts of his commentary, known as Midrash Alẓi'ani, written about 1422, are extant in various Yemenite manuscripts in Jerusalem, Oxford, and London. The British Museum manuscript, copied in 1513, contains his commentary on the Early Prophets, while a Bodleian manuscript, comprising three volumes, includes that on the Early Prophets, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel.

bibliography:

M. Steinschneider, in: hb, 19 (1879), 131–6; 20 (1880), 7–12, 39–40, 61–65; Steinschneider, Arab Lit, 248; G. Karpeles, Geschichte der juedischen Literatur, 2 (1886), 771; J. Ratzaby, in: ks, 28 (1952/53), 267; S. Greidi, in: ks, 33 (1957/58), 112.

[Yehoshua Horowitz]

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