Elijah ben Ḥayyim

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ELIJAH BEN ḤAYYIM (1530?–1610?), rabbi and halakhist, known as Maharanaḥ or M orenu ha-Ra v ib n Ḥ ayyim. Elijah was born in Adrianople and in about 1575 was appointed chief rabbi of Constantinople. His writings – including novellae, discussions on most of the tractates of the Talmud, and responsa – were stolen, but some were recovered and published. They comprise Teshuvot ha-Ranaḥ (Constantinople, 18102), responsa, with an appendix consisting of novellae on tractate Ketubbot published by his disciple, Isaac di Leon; Mayim Amukim (Venice, 1647), responsa, together with others by Elijah *Mizraḥi;Ha-Noten Imrei Shefer (Venice, 1630), homilies on the Pentateuch (the first edition entitled Mikhtav me-Eliyahu (Constantinople, 1624) was probably incomplete). He was highly regarded by later rabbis, among them Akiva *Eger, who praised his Teshuvot ha-Ranaḥ, which he used as a source for his decisions.


Conforte, Kore, 42a–b, 48b; Beer, in: Literaturblatt des Orients, 9 (1848), 805f.; Rosanes, Togarmah, 3 (1938), 32f.; Habermann, in: Sefer Assaf (1953), 217–22.

[Jacob Haberman]

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Elijah ben Ḥayyim

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