BERLIN, ISAIAH BEN JUDAH LOEB


BERLIN, ISAIAH BEN JUDAH LOEB
BERLIN, ISAIAH BEN JUDAH LOEB (Isaiah Pick; 1725–1799), rabbi and author. Berlin was known also as Isaiah Pick after his father-in-law, Wolf Pick of Breslau, who supported him for many years. He was born in Eisenstadt, Hungary, but his father, an eminent talmudic scholar (who later became rabbi of Pressburg), moved to Berlin where the young Berlin studied under him. Later he studied under Ẓevi Hirsch Bialeh (Ḥarif), the rabbi of Halberstadt, at the latter's yeshivah. In 1755 Berlin moved to Breslau where he engaged in business. In 1793, when already advanced in years, he was elected to a rabbinical post, being appointed to succeed Isaac Joseph Te'omim as rabbi of Breslau. His election was marked by a dispute between the members of the community and the local maskilim, who had begun to organize themselves as a body and opposed Berlin, who, despite his love of peace, openly attacked their ideas. Berlin was elected by an overwhelming majority. According to ḥasidic sources, Berlin was sympathetically disposed toward that movement and extended a friendly welcome to one of its emissaries, Jacob Samson of Spitsevka. Berlin was renowned for his conciliatory attitude and for his avoidance of all disputes. Characteristically, he called a work She'elat Shalom ("A Greeting of Peace"), for "all my life I have been careful not to treat my fellow men with disrespect, even to the extent of not slighting them by faint praises." As a result of this moderation, leaders of the Breslau maskilim, such as Joel Brill and Aaron Wolfsohn, frequently visited him. Berlin corresponded on halakhic subjects with his brother-in-law joseph steinhardt , ezekiel landau of Prague, eleazar b. eleazar kallir , and ephraim zalman margolioth of Brody, among others. His chief claim to fame rests not on his rabbinic and halakhic but rather on his extensive literary activities devoted to glosses and textual notes on talmudic literature. He commented on the Bible, Mishnah, Talmud, Alfasi, Maimonides, the Arukh, and the whole corpus of the earlier halakhic authorities. Of his collated texts, in which he notes parallel passages and variant readings, the most important is that on the Talmud, entitled Masoret ha-Shas ("Talmud Tradition"), which supplements an earlier work by Joseph Samuel, rabbi of Frankfurt. First published at Dyhernfurth (1800–04), it has since been printed in every edition of the Talmud. Berlin not only cites parallel passages, but also amends and compares texts, displaying an acute critical faculty and a profound grasp of history. His other works are (1) She'elat Shalom (Dyhernfurth, 1786), a commentary on Aḥai of Shabḥa's She'iltot, with sources and notes entitled Rishon le-Zion; (2) Hafla'ah sheba-Arakhin, glosses and annotations to Nathan b. Jehiel of Rome's Arukh (first published, part 1, Breslau, 1830, part 2, Vienna, 1859), and thereafter in many editions of the Arukh; (3) Minnei Targima, expositions on Targum Onkelos (Breslau, 1831); (4) Tosefot Rishon le-Ẓiyyon, notes and brief comments on the Mishnah (first published at Sulzbach, 1783–85, and often reprinted); (5) Kashot Meyushav (Koenigsberg, 1860), in which all talmudic passages concluding with the word kashya ("difficulty") are answered; (6) Omer ha-Shikḥah, containing   talmudic halakhot not mentioned by the codifiers. This work, first published as an addendum to Kashot Meyushav, was later printed separately (Johannisberg, 1866). There was no early work to which Berlin did not write glosses and explanations, as he was in the habit of annotating every book that he read. Thus he wrote glosses to (7) the Bible (Dyhernfurth, 1775; Lemberg, 1861); (8) the prayer book in Tikkun Shelomo (Dyhernfurth, 1806); (9) Alfasi (Pressburg, 1836); (10) Maimonides' Yad (Dyhernfurth, 1809); (11) Elijah Baḥur's Tishbi (his annotations appearing in Moses Koerner's Birkat Moshe, Berlin, 1834); (12) Malachi b. Jacob's Yad Malakhi (Berlin, 1852); (13) Elijah b. Moses de Vidas' Reshit Ḥokhmah (Dyhernfurth, 1811). His unpublished works include (14) Yesh Seder la-Mishnah, a commentary in several volumes on the Mishnah; (15) Tena Tosefta, a commentary on the Tosefta; (16) Keneset Ḥakhmei Yisrael, responsa; (17) Shetarei ha-Me'uḥarin, novella on Rashi and tosafot to the Talmud, dealing with those passages where proof was deduced from later biblical verses but could equally well have been inferred from earlier ones; (18) glosses and notes on the minor tractates. Berlin was the first in Germany to interest himself in the history of post-talmudic literature. He was also the first to offer a solution to the problem of the identity and the period of the paytan eleazar kallir , and although his conclusions are not accepted by scholars, they all use the extensive material cited by him (see J. Steinhardt's Zikhron Yosef to OḤ 13–15). -BIBLIOGRAPHY: A. Berliner, in: MWJ, 6 (1879), 65–89; Y.A. Kamelhar, Dor De'ah (19352), 87–89. (Itzhak Alfassi)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Berlin, Isaiah ben Judah Loeb — ▪ Hungarian scholar also called  Isaiah Pick   born October 1725, Eisenstadt, Hungary [now in Austria] died May 13, 1799, Breslau, Silesia, Prussia [now Wrocław, Pol.]       Jewish scholar noted for his textual commentaries on the Talmud and… …   Universalium

  • Berlin, Isaiah ben Judah Loeb (Pick, Isaiah) — (1725 99)    German talmudist. He was born in Hungary and lived in Berlin and Breslau. He wrote on a wide range of rabbinic literature. His emendations have been added to editions of the Talmud since 1800 …   Dictionary of Jewish Biography

  • BERLIN, DAVID BEN (Judah) LOEB — (d. 1771), German rabbi and talmudic authority. The brother of isaiah berlin , he was probably born in Eisenstadt (Hungary). After serving as rabbi of Dessau and Marktbreit (Bavaria) and as chief rabbi of Schwarzburg, Berlin was appointed rabbi… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • BASCHKO, ZEVI HIRSCH BEN BENJAMIN — (1740–1807), rabbi and halakhist. Baschko was the last to occupy the position of rabbi (which he held from 1802. of the joint communities of Altona, Hamburg, and Wandsbek (the Three Communities ) before the union was dissolved. Born in Zamosc,… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • political philosophy — Branch of philosophy that analyzes the state and related concepts such as political obligation, law, social justice, and constitution. The first major work of political philosophy in the Western tradition was Plato s Republic. Aristotle s… …   Universalium

  • KABBALAH — This entry is arranged according to the following outline: introduction general notes terms used for kabbalah the historical development of the kabbalah the early beginnings of mysticism and esotericism apocalyptic esotericism and merkabah… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • HEBREW LITERATURE, MODERN — definition and scope beginnings periodization …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • PRINTING, HEBREW — pre modern period The first mention of Jews in connection with printing is found in Avignon c. 1444 (before Gutenberg) when a Jew, Davin de Caderousse, studied the new craft. The first Hebrew books were printed at least within 35 years after the… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • History of antisemitism — Antisemitism Part of Jewish history …   Wikipedia

  • PUBLISHING — This article is arranged according to the following outline: general publishing The Dutch Jerusalem in germany and austria in scandinavia in italy in france in czechoslovakia in yugoslavia in romania in hungary in poland in russia in spain and… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.