Canpanton (Campanton), Isaac ben Jacob

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CANPANTON (Campanton), ISAAC BEN JACOB

CANPANTON (Campanton), ISAAC BEN JACOB (1360–1463), Castilian rabbi. Canpanton was the head of a yeshivah in Zamora in western Spain, among whose students were Isaac de *Leon, Isaac *Aboab ii, Samuel b. Abraham Valensi, and Shem Tov *Ibn Shem Tov. He laid down methodological rules for the study of the Talmud which had a profound influence. These he summarized in his Darkhei ha-Talmud (called Darkhei ha-Gemara in the Mantua edition of 1593). In this work he departs from the method of previous writers on talmudic methodology, who had merely laid down talmudic rules. Canpanton systematically and logically explained the proper method of studying the text, and the pedagogical principles to be employed in that study. He was also the first to lay down methodological rules for the study of the rishonim. His system was transmitted by his students to Jacob *Berab, who introduced it into his yeshivah in Safed. Samuel ibn *Sid, the pupil of Isaac de Leon, also describes at length in his Kelalei Shemuel the method of study at the yeshivah as determined by Isaac Canpanton. A Darkhei ha-Talmud was first published in Constantinople, 1515–20 (?); a more complete edition was published in Venice in 1565. It has since been frequently republished; the 1891 edition had corrections and notes by I.H. *Weiss. Canpanton also took an active part in communal affairs. In 1450, after the death of Don Abraham *Benveniste, he became a member of the committee, along with Joseph *Ibn Shem Tov, the well-known philosopher, and Joseph b. Abraham Benveniste, appointed to apportion taxation among the Jews of Castile. He died in Peñafiel after undergoing considerable hardships. He appears to have engaged in the study of Kabbalah and miraculous deeds were attributed to him. His kabbalistic doctrine was circulated by his disciples and, in turn, by their disciples. Canpanton was greatly admired by his contemporaries, both on account of his personality and as a teacher, and he is widely quoted by them in their works on talmudic methodology. The Darkhei ha-Talmud, however, is his only extant work.

bibliography:

M. Rosenmann, in: mwj, 20 (1893), 160–5; G. Scholem, in: Tarbiz, 24 (1955), 167; H.Z. Dimitrovski, in: Sefunot, 7 (1962/63), 83–96; Baer, Spain, 2 (1966), 270. add. bibliography: David, in: Kiryat Sefer, 51 (1976), 324–26; Gross, in: Pe'amim, 31 (1987), 3–21; D. Boyarin, Ha-Iyyun ha-Sefaradi (1989); M. Breuer, Oholei Torah (2003), index;

[Abraham David]