KIRCHHEIM, RAPHAEL (1804–1889), German scholar and author. Kirchheim was born in Frankfurt. He served as shoḥet in Frankfurt and later became a partner in a banking house, which allowed him to devote most of his time to scholarly pursuits. He was at first an opponent of Reform and severely criticized the radicalism of the 1845 rabbinical assemblies of Brunswick and Frankfurt, as in his edition of S.J. Rapoport, Tokhaḥat Megullah (Heb. and Ger., 1845) and his open letter to A.J. Adler of Worms (1845). Under the influence of Abraham *Geiger, however, he became a proponent of Reform. Kirchheim edited Geiger's Hebrew writings under the title Kevuẓat Ma'amarim (1877). Among Kirchheim's published works are the annotations to the section "Va'ad la-Ḥakhamim" and a biography of Ḥ.J.D. *Azulai in the annotated edition of Azulai's biobibliographical lexicon Shem ha-Gedolim prepared by Kirchheim in association with A. Fuld and others (1847); Karmei Shomron (1851), a study of the history, religion, and literature of the Samaritans; an edition with commentary of the seven minor Palestinian tractates, Sheva Massekhtot Ketannot Yerushalmiyyot (1851, repr. 1966); an edition of Eliezer Ashkenazi's Ta'am Zekenim (1854); an edition of Perush al Divrei ha-Yamim, a tenth-century commentary on Chronicles (1874); the introduction to B. Goldberg's 1856 edition of Ibn Janah's Sefer ha-Rikmah; and a number of other introductions. In his Neue Exegetenschule (1867) he severely criticized S.R. Hirsch's Pentateuch commentary, particularly his extravagant etymologies. Kirchheim's library passed to the Religious School of the Frankfurt community and later to the National and University Library, Jerusalem.
S. Unna, in: jjlg, 12 (1918), 318ff.; 20 (1929), 19ff.; B.Z. Dinur, in: ks, 1 (1924), 150ff., 318ff.; 4 (1927), 67ff., 166ff., 328ff.; J. Unna, in: blbi, 4 (1961), 221–31.