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1110 - 1180 ABRAHAM BEN DAVID 'IBN DAUD' (Rabad I) (Spain)

Noted philosopher, physician and historian. He believed in defending Judaism, especially against Karaite thinking, by using reason and rationality and not just faith. Ibn Daud's most well known book is the Sefer HaKabbalah (Book of Tradition), in which he puts forth a historical and philosophical defense of Judaism. He traces the passing of Judaic law and the Torah though the Talmud, beginning with the foundation of Judaism and delving into Spanish Jewish history in great detail. Much of our knowledge of this period is due to his work. He is the source of the medieval story of the "Four Rabbis" (see 945) (R. Moses b. Hanokh, R. Shemariah, R. Hushi'el and one whose name isn't known) who were captured by a Moslem captain and sold into slavery in Spain, Cairo, and Kairouan. When ransomed, they created new centers for the study of Torah in Alexandria, Tunisia and Cordova.


During the reign of grand duke(Prince) Svyatopolk II (1093- 1113) the Jews resided in relative peace. This despite the anti- Jewish ranting of Theodosius, abbot at the famous monastery in Pechera. Upon the death of the duke wide spread rioting took place with Jewish homes plundered . Russian historians claim that the new Prince Vladimir Monomakh expelled all the Jews from Russia, but there is no evidence that this actually happened.

1114 MAYENCE (Germany)

A new synagogue was dedicated after the old one had been destroyed in the first crusade. King Henry IV, investigating stolen Jewish property, found that much of it was in the hands of the Archbishop Ruthard and his family. The King confiscated the property but kept it for himself (the Crown).

C. 1115 - C. 1184 ISAAC BEN SAMUEL THE ELDER aka Ri ha-Zaken (France)

One of the most prominent Tosafists and the great-grandson of Rashi. He also wrote a biblical commentary as well as a commentary on the Rif (Isaac Alfasi see 1013).

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