Plaut (Flaut) Hezekiah Feivel

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PLAUT (Flaut), HEZEKIAH FEIVEL (1818–1895), Hungarian rabbi. Born in Kolin, Plaut studied under Moses *Sofer of Pressburg, whom he venerated exceedingly, paying particular attention to every detail of his way of life so that he could emulate him. A profound talmudic scholar, Plaut was renowned for his piety. He engaged in halakhic correspondence with Hillel Lichtenstein, rabbi of Kolommya, Galicia, with whom he had studied. In 1849 he was appointed rabbi of Nagysurany and remained there until his death. Students from every part of Hungary came to study at the large yeshivah he established there. As rabbi of Nagysurany he was also rabbi for the whole region, which included the community of Nove Zamky (Ersekujvar). He spent a number of Sabbaths there every year and preached there despite the fact that the leaders of the synagogue had, against accepted custom, moved the reading desk from the center of the synagogue to the front of the ark. When a ban was eventually issued by the Orthodox Hungarian rabbis against even entering such a synagogue, he established a separate synagogue in the old style. Plaut had no children but brought up orphans as his own children.

He was the author of Likkutei Ḥaver Ben Ḥayyim, in 11 parts (1878–93), containing talmudic novellae, glosses on the four parts of the Shulḥan Arukh, a number of his responsa, eulogies, the glosses of the Ḥatam Sofer (Moses Sofer) on the Shulhan Arukh, Yoreh De'ah, and the customs of Ḥatam Sofer and the latter's biography, as well as Plaut's correspondence with Hillel Lichtenstein.


H.F. Plaut (Flaut), Likkutei Ḥaver Ben Ḥayyim, 1 (1878), introd.; P.Z. Schwartz, Shem ha-Gedolim me-Ereẓ Hagar, 2 (1914), 26b, no. 5; 3 (1915), 21bf., no. 13; A. Stern, Meliẓei Esh, 3 (1962), 27th Kislev, no. 219.

[Samuel Weingarten-Hakohen]