Allon, Gedalya

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ALLON, GEDALYA (formerly Rogoznizki ; 1901–1950), historian. Allon was born in Kobrin, Russia, and studied at the Slobodka yeshivah. In 1917 he returned to Kobrin, where he became active in the Zionist movement and established a religious Hebrew school, Ḥevrona. After a year's study in Berlin in 1924 he immigrated to Palestine. He was in 1931 one of the first graduates of the Hebrew University and then taught Talmud and Jewish history there. Allon clarified many problems in the development of halakhah and the evolution of the social history of the Jews. He argued that the period following the destruction of the Second Temple should not be viewed as the beginning of the Diaspora, but as a continuation of the period of autonomous existence in Palestine, retaining the basic elements of national independence (the lack of which is characteristic of the Diaspora). Allon's work, combining an exhaustive acquaintance with source material and an acute critical sense, placed the history of Palestinian Jewry in the first centuries of the Common Era upon a new basis. His Toledot ha-Yehudim be-Ereẓ Yisrael bi-Tekufat ha-Mishnah veha-Talmud ("History of the Jews in Palestine in the Period of the Mishnah and the Talmud," 2 vols., 1953–56) was published posthumously, as were Meḥkarim be-Toledot Yisrael bi-Yemei Bayit Sheni u-vi-Tekufat ha-Mishnah ve-ha-Talmud (2 vols., 1957–58) and collected essays that had appeared in various scholarly journals.


Z. Dimitrowsky and S. Safrai, in: ks, 26 (1950/51), 308–14; Le-Zikhro shel G. Allon (1953), tributes by members of the faculty of the Hebrew University; Sefer Zikkaron li-Gedalyahu Allon (1970); Sefer Kobrin (1951), 275–7.

[Shmuel Safrai]