Isaac ben Abraham of Narbonne

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ISAAC BEN ABRAHAM OF NARBONNE (13th century), halakhist of Provence. Almost no biographical details on him are known. He was a pupil (according to some, a colleague-disciple) of *Naḥmanides and Jonah *Gerondi and one of the teachers of Solomon b. Abraham *Adret. Some identify him with Isaac of Carcassone, who is mentioned in a work on Pesaḥim ascribed to Yom Tov *Ishbili (Ritba), in novellae to Avodah Zarah by the pupils of Jonah Gerondi, in Nimmukei Yosef to Ketubbot, and in responsa by Simeon b. Ẓemaḥ *Duran. There is, however, insufficient evidence to establish this identification. Meir (Introduction to Beit ha-Beḥirah to Avot, ed. by B.Z. Prag (1964), 57) states that Isaac compiled commentaries on halakhot by Isaac *Alfasi. Some scholars have attempted to ascribe various commentaries preserved in manuscript to Isaac, but their evidence is doubtful. Benedikt claims that the commentaries ascribed to a pupil of Naḥmanides on the tractates Beẓah, Megillah, Ta'anit, Pesaḥim, and Makkot are by Isaac; his opinion is shared by Blau and Chavel, but rejected by B. Naeh. A manuscript comprising a commentary by Alfasi to Ḥullin has been ascribed to Isaac by Marx, as well as another manuscript comprising a commentary by the same author to Pesaḥim (by Sassoon). Naeh has raised serious doubts about these ascriptions, and they cannot be accepted with certainty. Isaac of Carcassone is said to have written commentaries on halakhot by Isaac Alfasi to Pesaḥim, Avodah Zarah, Bava Meẓia, and Bava Batra.


Marx, in: rej, 58 (1909), 301–3; D.S. Sassoon, Ohel David, 2 (1932), 1075 no. 1050; S. Assaf, Sifran shel Rishonim (1935), 53; Benedikt, in: ks, 29 (1953/54), 413–7; M.Y. Blau (ed.), Perush ha-Ra'ah… Massekhet Berakhot (1957), 10f. (introd.); idem (ed.), Shitat ha-Kadmonim… Bava Meẓia (1967), introd., 15, 30f.; B. Naeh (ed.), in: Gemara Shelemah, 1 (1960). 26 (introd.); Chavel, in: Ha-Darom, 12 (1960), 32; Hurwitz, ibid., 24 (1967), 43–7.

[Shlomoh Zalman Havlin]

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Isaac ben Abraham of Narbonne

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