Bukarat (Abukarat, Abucarat, Bukrat), Abraham ben Solomon Ha-Levi

views updated


BUKARAT (Abukarat, Abucarat, Bukrat), ABRAHAM BEN SOLOMON HA-LEVI (late 15th–early 16th century), exegete and poet. Bukarat lived in Malaga, Spain. He was well versed in the natural sciences as well as in Spanish and Arabic. After the expulsion of the Jews from Spain he went to Tunis, where he remained for many years. His Sefer ha-Zikkaron (Leghorn, 1845), one of the best supercommentaries on Rashi to the Pentateuch, was completed there in 1507. In it he reveals himself as a painstaking scholar, with a sensitive feeling for language. Bukarat utilized his linguistic knowledge to elucidate the meaning of words and concepts and also to collate manuscripts to determine the correct version. Some of his poems are preserved in the Guenzburg collection, Moscow. His elegy on the expulsion from Spain, which was printed by Ben-Sasson, is of considerable importance. In it he describes the situation of those Spanish and Portuguese exiles who came to Morocco and Algeria, giving precise information as to their numbers. According to A. Berliner, Bukarat translated the responsa of Isaac Alfasi from Arabic to Hebrew. abraham ben isaac ha-levi abukarat, who lived in the following generation in Egypt, may have been his grandson. He was a wealthy scholar, whose library contained important manuscripts.


S.D. Luzzatto (ed.), Sefer ha-Zikkaron… A. Bukrat (1845), introduction; L. Dukes, in: Oẓar Neḥmad, 3 (1860), 151; Scholem, in: ks, 2 (1925/26), 103–4; Ben-Sasson, in: Tarbiz, 31 (1961/62), 59–71; Hirschberg, Afrikah, 1 (1965), 300, 325.