Mansurah, Saadiah ben Judah

views updated


MANSURAH, SAADIAH BEN JUDAH (19th century), Yemenite scholar living in *Sanʾa. He was author of Sefer ha-Maḥashavah, which appeared under the title Sefer ha-Galut ve-ha-Ge'ullah (1955), which consists of seven sections written in rhymed prose. Like the Sefer ha-Musar of R. Zechariahal-Ḍāhri, it describes the hardships endured by the community of Sanʾa in his time. The principal hero is Eitan ha-Ezraḥi (i.e., Abraham the Patriarch) and the narrator Ḥazmak (i.e., Saadiah, after the "*Atbash" method of interchanging Hebrew letters) is the poet himself. The narrator tells the founder of the nation of the misfortunes of Yemenite Jewry, and the latter in turn relates the servitude of Israel in the Egyptian exile. He deals with the exiles into which Israel was sent, with the return to Zion and the redemption of the people. The last section consists of eulogies of the rabbis of *Yemen and the author himself. Mansurah also wrote poems and prayers, the subject of which is exile and redemption, as well as an introduction to Yemenite poetry. In the field of halakhah, he wrote Sha'ar ha-Moda'it on the laws of sheḥitah and terefot.


S. Mansurah, Sefer ha-Galut ve-ha-Ge'ullah (1955), introd.

[Yehuda Ratzaby]