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Joseph ben Kalonymus Ha-Nakdan I


JOSEPH BEN KALONYMUS HA-NAKDAN I (13th century), grammarian and poet from a family of grammarians and nakdanim in Germany. Joseph copied and vocalized many manuscripts and signed with the addition "the scribe who gives goodly words" (see Gen. 49:21). *Abraham b. Azriel, author of the Arugat ha-Bosem, cites him in his book on matters of language and piyyut. His extant piyyutim include the seliḥah he composed in memory of the martyrs of 1235 of Laudna and Bischofsheim, beginning with the words "Ezak Ḥamas Korotai" ("I cry for the violence that has befallen me") and a piyyut for Rosh Ha-Shanah, Melekh Elyon Addir ba-Marom Adonai ("Exalted King, God, mighty on high") found in a French festival prayer book of 1278. It is possible that he is to be identified with Jose of Heidelberg, who corrected Torah scrolls and lived in Bohemia where the aforementioned Abraham b. Azriel dwelt. Joseph's nephew was Joseph b. Kalonymus ha-Nakdan ii (died after 1294). He too was a grammarian and paytan. He lived in Xanten and studied under his maternal grandfather, *Samson ha-Nakdan. He was much occupied in copying and vocalizing of manuscripts and composed poems for learning the correct reading and the intonations of the books of the Bible, one of which, entitled Ta'amei Emet, for Job, Proverbs, and Psalms, was published with the author's explanation by A. *Berliner (see bibliography).


Davidson, Oẓar, 4 (1933), 402; Zunz, Lit Poesie, 335; A. Berliner (ed.), Ta'amei Emet im Be'ur be-Ḥaruzim me'et ha-Nakdan Yosef bar Kalonymus (1886); N. Bruell, Jahrbuecherfuer Juedische Geschichte und Literatur, 8 (1887), 118–21; J. Freimann, in: Festschrift… Dubnow (1930), 169–71; E. Urbach (ed.), Arugat ha-Bosem, 1 (1939), 281.

[Abraham David]

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