BONAN


BONAN
BONAN, family of Tunisian rabbis, some of whose members settled in tiberias and safed . MAS'UD BONAN (born c. 1705), the first known member of the family, was one of the first scholars of the renewed settlement in Tiberias. In 1748 he was sent as an emissary to Western Europe, and he spent four years in Italy, Holland, England, and Germany. While in Hamburg, he supported jonathan eybeschuetz in his controversy with jacob emden . In 1751 he was in London, where he wrote an approbation to Mikdash Melekh by Shalom Buzaglo. From 1752 he made Safed his permanent home. Following the earthquake of 1759, he signed, as chief rabbi of Safed, the letters of the emissaries who traveled to different countries to solicit aid for the rehabilitation of the community. During the wars of Ali Bey, mamluk ruler of Egypt in 1773, who plundered the Jews, he proceeded to Europe as an emissary, though old and in ill health. The main center of Mas'ud's activity was Leghorn, but he also visited France, Austria, and England. He apparently returned to Safed after 1778. ḤAYYIM MORDECAI, son of Mas'ud, was sent, together with Israel Benveniste, to Western Europe in 1767 on behalf of the Safed community, and again in 1774 to Syria, Iraq, and Kurdistan. ISAAC BONAN (died c. 1810) was an outstanding scholar of Tunis. Of his books the following have been published: Oholei Yiẓḥak (Leghorn, 1821), talmudic novellae, together with notes on various halakhic codes. Also included are the halakhic rulings of Isaiah di Trani the Elder on the tractates Rosh Ha-Shanah, Ta'anit, and Ḥagigah; Ohel Yesharim (Leghorn, 1821), a talmudic methodology, arranged alphabetically (1846); Berit Yiẓḥak on the Mekhilta, with its commentaries, Zayit Ra'anan and Shevut Yehudah, of Judah Najar of Tunis, together with a commentary on the Mishnah of Berakhot and the commentary of the tosafists on the Pentateuch. His son DAVID (d. 1850) studied under Isaac Tayib and was a rabbi of the Leghorn community in Tunis. David's books, published by his son Isaac, were Dei Hashev (1857), responsa compiled together with Judah ha-Levi of Gibraltar, to refute Bekhor Isaac Navarro's strictures on the above-mentioned Oholei Yiẓḥak, and his own responsa under the different title Nishal David; Mo'ed David on the Avodat ha-Kodesh of Solomon b. Abraham Adret (Part I, on Festivals,   1887); Maḥaneh David (1889), researches on Talmud and halakhah. Included are novellae by Isaiah di Trani the Elder and of the son of Naḥmanides on tractate Beẓah. David also prepared his father's books for publication and wrote notes on Berit Yiẓḥak. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: Yaari, Sheluḥei, 460–1, 507–8; M. Benayahu, Rabbi Ḥ.Y.D. Azulai (Heb., 1959), 28, 553; Simonsohn, in: Sefunot, 6 (1962), 335–6, 346–54; Emmanuel, ibid., 407, 409, 420; D. Cazès, Notes bibliographiques sur la littérature juive-tunisienne (1893), 36–59.

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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