Dhamārī, Saʿid ben David

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DHAMĀRĪ, SAʿID BEN DAVID (first half of the 15th century), Yemenite writer and scholar; author of Midrash ha-Be'ur (1441), a commentary on the Pentateuch and the haftarot, one of the early Yemenite Midrashim. The name of his work, he states, stems from the fact that it is an explanation (be'ur) of "the principles of the Torah and the oral tradition, as well as the sayings of the sages and stories about them." His sources were the Babylonian and Jerusalem Talmud, Sifrei, the Mekhilta, and Maimonides' works. Generally his teachings are identical to similar Yemenite Midrashim, but also contain important materials that Dhamārī took from earlier collections now lost. Of great significance are the differences in the versions transmitted by Dhamārī. The book as a whole is still in manuscript, but most of the weekly portion Va-Yeẓe was published by L. Finkelstein as an anonymous Midrash and subsequently identified by Ratzaby.


Finkelstein, in: huca, 12–13 (1937–38), 523–57.

[Yehuda Ratzaby]