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Galipapa, Ḥayyim ben Abraham


GALIPAPA, ḤAYYIM BEN ABRAHAM (1310–1380), Spanish talmudist. Galipapa was born in Monzon, Aragon. He served as rabbi of Huesca and subsequently of Pamplona. The following works by him are known: Emek Refa'im, a commentary to the tractate Semaḥot which includes a description of the *Black Death and the persecutions of the Jews which came in its train in Catalonia and Provence during the years 1347–50 – extracts from it are given by *Joseph ha-Kohen in his Emek ha-Bakha and Divrei ha-Yamim le-Malkhei Ẓarefat;Iggeret ha-Ge'ullah, mentioned by Joseph Albo in his Ikkarim (4:42); a commentary on the Seder Avodah (for the Day of Atonement) of Joseph b. Isaac ibn Avitur, extracts from which are given in the Koveẓ Ma'asei Yedei Ge'onim Kadmonim (1856; pt. 2, 120–2). There is also extant a letter by *Isaac b. Sheshet (Resp. Ribash 394) to Galipapa from which the latter's views on halakhah can be seen. Galipapa's place in the Spanish Judaism of his time was determined by the great daring he displayed both in thought and in halakhah. According to Joseph Albo (loc. cit.), Galipapa maintained that all Isaiah's prophecies of deliverance had reference to the Second Temple and Daniel's vision in chapter 7 to the Hasmoneans. It is evident that in his work Galipapa intended to abolish belief in the coming of the Messiah or at least to deny that there was a basis for such belief in the Bible. Galipapa also showed an exceptional tendency toward leniency in halakhah. He maintained that there was no need to conceal permissive laws out of fear that the permission would cause the ignorant to fall into error with regard to things forbidden "for they are all wise and with understanding, knowing the Torah, expert in the minutiae of the precepts, and as full of precepts as is the pomegranate of seeds" (Isaac b. Sheshet, loc. cit.). In opposition to the opinions of all authorities before him he ruled that combing the hair on the Sabbath is not forbidden. To find a basis for this permissiveness Galipapa was compelled arbitrarily to amend the text of the Talmud, thus aggravating still more the opposition to him.


Michael, Or, no. 866; Graetz-Rabbinowitz, 5 (1897), 309–11; Weiss, Dor, 5 (19044), 147f.; I.F. Baer, Toledot ha-Yehudim bi-Sefarad ha-Noẓerit (19592), 271.

[Jacob S. Levinger]

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