Baruch ben Isaac of Worms

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BARUCH BEN ISAAC OF WORMS

BARUCH BEN ISAAC OF WORMS (late 12th–early 13th century), German tosafist. Although Baruch lived in Worms, he probably came from France and is sometimes referred to as Ha-Zarefati ("the Frenchman"). Baruch was a pupil of *Isaac b. Samuel the Elder of Dampierre, and after his teacher's death, spent a considerable amount of time in France with Judah of Paris. Baruch immigrated to Ereẓ Israel (1237?). It seems certain that he is not to be identified with *Baruch b. Isaac of Regensburg.

He is renowned as the author of Sefer ha-Terumah (written shortly before 1202; first published Venice, 1523), which comprises a summary of the established halakhot on several subjects, including the laws pertaining to Ereẓ Israel, combined and arranged according to the chapters of the relevant tractates of the Talmud. The whole work reflects the teachings of Isaac b. Samuel. In it Baruch mentions *Samuel b. Meir (Rashbam) and *Isaac b. Meir, as well as statements of Rabbi Jacob *Tam and his pupils; however, very few German scholars are referred to. By virtue of its wealth of material and its terse, easy style, well adapted to its purpose of leading, through discussion, to the practical halakhah, the book spread through France, Germany, Italy, and Spain, and was widely quoted by many later authorities among them, *Eliezer of Worms, *Isaac b. Moses Or Zarua, *Moses b. Jacob of Coucy, Zedekiah *Anav, *Aaron b. Jacob of Lunel, and *Naḥmanides. Entire halakhic passages from the work were inserted by copyists into the *Maḥzor Vitry. Numerous manuscripts of Sefer ha-Terumah and some manuscripts of an anonymous abridgment are extant. Baruch also wrote tosafot to several tractates of the Talmud, but only those on Zevaḥim have been preserved and they are printed in the standard editions of the Talmud. A. Epstein held that the anonymous commentary on Tamid attributed to Abraham b. David (Prague, 1725) should be ascribed to Baruch, but – despite a measure of similarity between the commentary and a number of quotations in Baruch's name which are known – this is unlikely. E.E. Urbach has maintained that the commentary on the Sifra ascribed to Abraham b. David was written by Baruch, but this too is uncertain.

bibliography:

A. Epstein, Das talmudische Lexikon "Yiḥusei Tanna'im ve-Amora'im" (1895); Urbach, Tosafot, 263, 286–99, 511–2; V. Aptowitzer, Mavo le-Sefer Ravyah (1938), 327–8.

[Israel Moses Ta-Shma]