Jehiel Michael ("Michel") ben Eliezer

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JEHIEL MICHAEL ("Michel ") BEN ELIEZER (d. 1648), rabbi and kabbalist, who lived in Nemirov (the Ukraine). Jehiel's cousin Isaac praised his talmudic and kabbalistic knowledge as well as his mastery of secular sciences (introduction to Shivrei Luḥot). Jehiel at first regarded the *Chmielnicki persecutions as a presage of the coming messianic era. As the Cossacks came nearer to his community he exhorted its members to stay firm in their faith. During the massacre at Nemirov he and his mother were dragged to the Jewish cemetery and murdered there on the 22nd (according to others the 20th) of Sivan (1648). Jehiel's martyrdom is mentioned in the elegies composed by *Shabbetai b. Meir ha-Kohen and YomTov Lipmann *Heller in memory of the 1648 persecutions. Jehiel was the author of a work on the Al-Tikrei interpretations of the Talmud. A large part of the manuscript has been lost; the remaining fragment was published by his nephew as Shivrei Luḥot (Lublin, 1680). Part of his commentary on the Pentateuch and Al-Tikrei interpretations were republished together with the commentary Amarot Tehorot by Ḥayyim Selig Goldschlag (Warsaw, 1911). Jehiel is also mentioned in Korban Shabbat (Dyhrenfuerth, 1691, 10b–11a) by Bezalel b. Solomon of Kobrin.


J. Gurland, Le-Korot ha-Gezerot al-Yisrael, 2 (1888), 13–14; 5 (1650), 30–31; 7 (1892), 32; Graetz, Gesch, 10 (18963), 64; Fuenn, Keneset, 526; S. Bernfeld, Sefer ha-Dema'ot, 3 (1926), 117, 169f., 177, 204.

[Samuel Abba Horodezky]