DavidBen Zimra

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Egyptian Halakhic authority and Kabbalist (1479–1573), known, after the initial letters of his name, as Radbaz (Rabbi David Ben Zimra). Radbaz, leaving Spain, where he was born, at the time of the expulsion of the Jews in 1492, studied in Safed and then became a judge in Cairo and eventually both the spiritual and lay head of Egyptian Jewry. Towards the end of his long life he settled again in Safed, where he served as a member of Joseph Karo's court. As a man of great wealth Radbaz was able to achieve a stern independence throughout his career. Radbaz is chiefly renowned for his collection of Responsa containing over 2,000 items. Azulai writes of him: ‘In the light of his keen reasoning walked those who had wandered in darkness and his Responsa went forth to every questioner from all over the world.’

Subjects: Judaism and Jewish Studies.

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