- ABI-ḤASIRA, family of kabbalists and pietists, most of whom lived in Morocco. SAMUEL (16th century), apparently of Moroccan origin, lived in Syria. He was renowned as a scholar of Talmud and practical Kabbalah. The first known member of the family in Morocco is MAKLOUF who lived in Dra. The local scholars wrote a special work (still in manuscript) on his eminence. AYYUSH and his two sons JACOB I and YAḤYA were all kabbalists. JACOB II BEN MASOUD (1807–1880) was a codifier and kabbalist, widely renowned for his great piety; people streamed to him to receive his blessings. Three times he tried to fulfill his dream of going to Ereẓ Israel, but the community and even the government stood in his way. In the end, however, he left despite their protestations. He succeeded in making his way as far as Damanhur, near Alexandria, but there he died and was buried. The anniversary of his death is commemorated in many communities. Jacob's works, almost all of which were published in Jerusalem, include Doresh Tov (1884); Pittuḥei Ḥotam, on the Torah (1885); Yoru Mishpatekha, responsa (1885); Bigdei ha-Sered, on the Passover Haggadah (1887, and Leghorn, 1890); Ginzei ha-Melekh, on Kabbalah (1889, 1961); Maḥsof ha-Lavan, on the Torah (1892); Alef Binah, on the alphabet (1893); Ma'gelei Ẓedek (1893); Levonah Zakkah, on the Talmud (1929); Sha'arei Teshuvah (1955); and Yagil Ya'akov, poems (Algiers, 1908; Jerusalem, 1962). DAVID, a kabbalist, was killed by a cannon shot at the instigation of the local mukhtar Mulai Muhammad in 1920. He wrote Sekhel Tov (2 vols., 1928) and Petaḥ ha-Ohel (3 vols., 1928). His brother ISAAC (1897–1970) emigrated to Israel in 1949, and the same year was appointed chief rabbi of Ramleh and district. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: J. Abi-Hasira, Doresh Tov (1884), introd. by A. Abi-Ḥasira; idem, Ma'gelei Ẓedek (1893), introd. by A. Abi-Ḥasira; Neubauer, Chronicles, 1 (1887), 152; J.M. Toledano, Ner ha-Ma'arav (1911), 211; E. Rivlin, Rabbi Shemu'el Abi-Ḥasira (1922); M.D. Gaon, Yehudei ha-Mizraḥ be-Ereẓ Yisrael, 2 (1938), 17; J. Ben-Naim, Malkhei Rabbanan (1931). (David Obadia)
Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.
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