MORDECAI BEN JUDAH HA-LEVI

MORDECAI BEN JUDAH HA-LEVI (d. 1684), posek and rabbinical authority in egypt . Mordecai was the son-in-law of R. Abraham Tarikah. He served for over 40 years as rabbi, all or part of the time as dayyan of cairo and of rosetta , and moved to jerusalem in 1684, dying there in the same year. In 1678 a sharp dispute broke out between R. Gabriel Esperanza, one of the leading scholars of safed , and Mordecai ha-Levi over a halakhic ruling. The dispute was brought before R. moses galante , the leading rabbi of Jerusalem, but he refused to become involved. His only published work was a collection of responsa, Darkhei No'am (Venice, 1697). It is a storehouse of information on the history of 17th-century Egyptian Jewry, which contains the responsa of many scholars of Mordecai's generation. The historian R. david conforte was among his friends. Other works written by him which were never published include: Avodat ha-Kodesh, a commentary on the Torah; Mikra'ei Kodesh, hermeneutics; Toledot Adam, concerning the education of children;   and Sof Adam, collected eulogies. His son R. abraham b. mordecai ha-levi was the author of Ginnat Veradim. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: R.A. Ben-Simeon, Tuv Miẓrayim (1908), 24; Frumkin-Rivlin, 2 (1928), 96–98; M. Benayahu, in: Sinai, 43 (1958), 105–8. (Abraham David)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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