Jacob ben Ḥayyim Talmid

views updated


JACOB BEN ḤAYYIM TALMID (d. after 1594), leader of Egyptian Jewry. Jacob was appointed to his position by the Ottoman authorities during the second half of the 16th century. Before him, this position was held by Tajir. Jacob was a member of the renowned Talmid family which had settled in Constantinople after the Spanish Expulsion. Joseph *Sambari refers to him by the title of *nagid. It does not, however, appear that this title was intended as the equivalent of Raʾīs al-Yahūd, the official title of the nagid during the *Mamluk period, but rather as a title of honor which was given to him by the Jewish community of Egypt. After his appointment to this position (apparently after 1560), he did not show the respect due to the most prominent of Egypt's rabbis, R. Bezalel *Ashkenazi, who, feeling insulted, issued a *ḥerem against him. This dispute was brought before the Ottoman governor of Egypt, who ordered the banishment of Jacob and the nullification of his title of nagid, probably in 1584–87. From then onward, the chiefs of the community in Egypt, who were sent by the authorities in Constantinople, were referred to as chelebi ("gentleman [of fashion]," in Turkish). In the days of Ibrāhīm Pasha (1583–84), Jacob, together with R. Eleazar Iskandari, took the initiative for the reopening of the synagogue of the *Musta'rabim in Cairo, which had been closed in 1545.


Neubauer, Chronicles, 1 (1887), 116f., 157, 160; Rosanes, Togarmah, 2 (1937), 220f.; Pollack, in: Zion, 1 (1936), 32f.; Assaf, Mekorot, 198. add bibliography: J. Sambari, in: S. Shtober (ed.), Divrei Yosef (1994), 141–42, 404, 414; A. David, in: Tarbiz, 41 (1972), 326–29.

[Abraham David]