Sa'dī, Sa'īd ben Shelomo

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SA'DĪ, SA'ĪD BEN SHELOMO (late 17th early–18th centuries), Yemenite historian who lived in *San'ā, the author of Dofi ha-Zeman ("Fault of the Times"), a chronicle on the history of the Jews in *Yemen between 1717 and 1726. It was the first historical work to be written by a Yemenite scholar, followed by many others into the 20th century. It reflects the severe moral deterioration of the Jewish community of San'ā as a result of the destruction of the communal system after Yemenite Jews returned from their exile in *Mawza'. The authority of the religious and temporal authorities was almost completely lost – there were even Jewish prostitutes in San'ā. So the principal objective of this work, like that of his contemporary R. Yiḥye Ṣaliḥ in his Peri Ẓaddik, was to show the moral to be drawn from the misfortunes which befell Yemenite Jewry. It is therefore not surprising that the tokhaḥot of the author hold an important place in the work. The above events also left a deep impression on the author himself, because he lost three of his sons at that time.


S. Geridi, Mi-Teman le-Ẓiyyon (1938), 119–22; Y. Qāfiḥ in: Sefunot, 1 (1956), 185–242. add. bibliography: Y. Tobi, Iyyunim bi-Megillat Teman (1986), 17–18.

[Yosef Tob (2nd ed.)]