Navigation – Plan du site
English Translations

On the Influence of Rabbi ‘Haim Joseph David Azulai (‘Hida)’s Shem Ha-Guedolim on the Hebraic Bio-bibliography

from the End of the 18th Century to the 20th Century
Yohanan Lederman
p. 101-113

Texte intégral

1Before entering into the subject of the history of this book and its offspring, the author, the ‘Hida, must be presented briefly. Moritz Steinschneider says of him: “’Haim Joseph David Azulai of Jerusalem (1724-1806) wrote a book about the biographies of the sages of Israel and their works. The content of the book was collected by him throughout his travels1.” The ‘Hida, like his father Isaac Zera’hia before him, had been appointed as a rabbinic envoy (shalia’h) to collect the funds necessary for the upkeep of the Hebron community.

2The ‘Hida left therefore for Europe a first time from 1753 to 1758 and a second time from 1772 to 1778. These peregrinations were recorded in his travel diary, Maagal tov (The Good Tour) in which he relates many of his literary findings2. While other envoys from Hebron, such as Abraham Conque (1648-1724), had travelled across Europe before him, none had gone with the perspective of a bio-bibliographer. Because of the decade spent on the European roads, the ‘Hida gathered the information which formed his magnum opus, the Shem ha-Guedolim, for which he undertook publication in Leghorn in 1774, during his second trip3.

3The study which follows aims at determining the ‘Hida’s influence in the domain of Hebraic bibliography by listing the books which have in their titles and subtitles the name of Shem ha-Guedolim. We get thus a curve of which the trajectory begins in the 18th century and ends up in the late 20th century. Nevertheless in order to truly appreciate the influence of the ‘Hida’s book in the domain of Hebraic bibliography, the history of this literary branch from its beginnings must be sketched briefly.

Hebraic bibliography in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance

4There isn’t properly speaking medieval Jewish bibliography. The lists of books and authors were not treated at that time with a rigor proper to this discipline. One finds generally fragmentary lists in the chronicles of which the objectives, like those of the apologetics, exceed the bibliographical treatment which becomes then the poor parent of historiography. Some examples will be sufficient to shed light on our discussion: the Sefer ha-Qabala (The Book of the Tradition, 1161) by Abraham ben David (ca. 1110-1180) is a purely apologetical, even polemical book, which by fighting against the Karaite schism cites authors and their books. In fact this rabbi picks up the traditional rabbinic chronology. Reading ben David’s text, we thus can learn who the Tannaim and Amoraïm (teachers at the time of the Mishna and Talmud) are and what the works are that the tradition attributes to them. Ben David manages to do this from the earliest traditions up until his time. All that we just expressed concerning ben David is applicable to the introduction of the Code (Mishne Tora) by Maimonides, finished in 1180.

5In the preamble (peti’ha) of his treatise, Avoth, Rabbi Mena’hem ben Salomon of Perpignan, nicknamed ha-Meiri (1249-1306), gives an updated chronology of rabbis including some works, but as its name connotes: Seder ha-Rabbanim (Chronology of the rabbis), we are still in the historiographical domain4. The work by Meiri will be completed by Isaac of Lattes (14th century) in his Shaare Tsion (The Gates of Zion), which he finished in 13725.

6This procedure is carried on by rabbi Abraham Zacuto from Spain (ca. 1450-1510) in his Sefer Yu’hassin (Book of the Generations) in which only the rabbis of the Mishna and the Talmud are entitled to a lexicographical treatment (which constitutes already a step toward systematization). At that time, the objective is still to update chronologically the status of the rabbis and their works.6

7In the Renaissance, we must mention David Gans of Prague (1541-1613) and his chronicle, Tsema’h David (David’s Branch, 1592). Despite the fact that it keeps a historiographical structure, we can nevertheless note at the end of the first part a chronological chart of subjects, a specificity subsequent to the abbreviation process, which tends to resemble sometimes a bibliographical list, because we only retain here the name of the author and that of his book. We find here therefore all of the fundamental elements of the bibliographical expression7.

Hebraic bibliography in the 17th and 18th centuries

8The one who has been agreed upon to be called the first Hebraic bibliographer worthy of that name is Sabbatai Bass (1641-1718). As early as 1655 he lived in Prague and passed through Amsterdam where he learned the printing trade. He finally settled in Dyhernfurth where he printed various books which today have been forgotten. His Sifte yeshenim (The Lips of the Sleeping People, published in Amsterdam in 1680) contains approximately 2,200 titles published up to his epoch8. The bibliographical content of the book is organized around two distinct alphabetical lists. The first list is for the books with content and location of publication (Bass mentions also the manuscripts). The second list, at the end of the book, contains the names of approximately 650 authors. Bass’ collection had been noticed by the circle of erudite scholars Acta eruditorum which recognized the value of this book later translated in German9. But this collection was put into posterity when reprinted in the Bibliotheca Hebraea by professor Johann Christoph Wolf (1683-1739), published in Hamburg between 1715 and 173310.

9We cannot talk about Sifte yeshenim by Bass without referring to Seder ha-Doroth (Chronology of the Generations, published in Karlsruhe in 1769) by Rabbi Ye’hiel Heilprin of Minsk, who passed away in the 1740s11. In this encyclopedic work (qualified by its voluminous content and organization) Heilprin picks up parts of Zacuto’s Sefer Yu’hassin. It concerns firstly the universal chronology which he increased in his own way and secondly, in the second part, the Glossary of the Tannaim and Amoraïm, which he rewrites, and again increases it. Finally, in the third part, Bass’ two lists can be found again, where Heilprin’s additions are mentioned by an asterisk (Seder ha-Doroth, vol. III, p. 3). This very popular book by Heilprin replaced Bass’ even though it contributed relatively little (38 authors and 588 books) to Bass’ bibliographical work. Nonetheless he familiarized the rabbinic students with the books and the authors, and stimulated interest toward this discipline12. His work has been reprinted several times, while Bass’ book saw only two reprints, the last one dated of 180613. We must mention a recent reprinting of Seder ha-doroth ha-Shalem (Complete Chronology of the Generations) done in Jerusalem in 1988, to which 13 appendices have been added.

10This summarizes what is known about the state of the field of Jewish bio-bibliography before the arrival of the ‘Hida in this half of the 18th century.

The ‘Hida’s Shem ha-Guedolim

11Before tackling the study of the books and authors who claim some affiliation to the Shem ha-Guedolim, the original publication by the ‘Hida must be presented so as to understand exactly what caused that which has been called the wave of Shem ha-Guedolim.

12The problem with the first edition of the Shem ha-Guedolim is that it has been published in several parts at various dates as follows:

  • Volume I, published in Leghorn in 1774, is entitled, Shem ha-Guedolim (The Name of the Great People) and it contains approximately 400 biographical and bibliographical entries.

  • Volume II, published in Leghorn in 1786, is called by the same name, and it contains nearly 1,200 entries plus an annexe.

  • Volume III, still published in Leghorn in 1796, is called now Vaad la-’Hakhamim (Meeting of the Sages). It contains approximately 600 entries. Here again, at the end of the volume, an annex and an errata can be found.

    Volume IV of Shem ha-Guedolim is in fact a second edition of Volume I, published in Leghorn in 1798. In this volume each alphabetical letter of the Shem ha-Guedolim is followed by a new section of the Vaad la-’Hakhamim, which constitutes a second edition of this part and increases it by approximately 350 entries14.

13Shem ha-Guedolim-Vaad la-’Hakhamim, such as the ‘Hida had published it, was difficult of access since its vast content had been treated, in each of the four volumes, according to alphabetical order. It wasn’t until the year 1852, in Vilna, when the great bibliographer, Isaac Aiziq Benjacob (1801-1863), gave its definitive form to this book, the one which is still today the model for the re-editions. This talented bibliographer brought together in a single volume the four volumes published by the ‘Hida. He divided it in two sections: 1) Maarekheth ha-Guedolim (Section of the Great People, that is the authors), and 2) Maarekheth ha-Sefarim (Section of the Books). From that point forward, this new organization allowed for the finding of biographical and bibliographical data in a single volume15. All that which was not strictly bio-bibliographical, was moved to the end of each letter in a document entitled, Quntrass a’haron (Final Document). Conversely all that which was informative yet still not of primary importance was kept in place but printed in cursive letters, called Rashi.

14This is therefore the edition which made access to the Shem ha-Guedolim easy. This edition is greatly responsable for the bibliographical activity among the Jews in the mid-19th century, an activity which, after its development with the ‘Hida at the end of the 18th century, waited until that time for its full expansion.

Books entitled Shem ha-Guedolim

15It is appropriate then to present the books, following the Shem ha-Guedolim, which pick up again the corpus name and therefore drive the evolution of the ‘Hida’s work. The first case, in 1864 in Warsaw, is the Shem ha-Guedolim ha-’Hadash (The New Name of the Great People) by Aaron Walden (1838-1912). Walden was a follower (‘hassid) of Kotzk, a school where intellectual discipline was of rigor and one constantly studied the Talmud: There the writings of the Maharal of Prague had replaced the Zohar16 and erudition was appreciated. This valorization of study constituted a cultural revolution in the Polish Hasidic environment of the time. Walden has thus published in 1889 an edition of the Psalms accompanied by an anthological commentary where erudition played an essential role as his literary sources summed 67817. He can therefore be characterized as having a double will; first that of being a learned person and then to use this erudition in a context of piety and Hasidism18.

16In the flyleaf, Walden goes to the point of usurping the ‘Hida’s name (see illustration). He then expresses very clearly that he comes to carry on the ‘Hida’s work in the Ashkenazi domain (‘hakhme ashkenaz u-Polin). A bit further on in his introduction (haqdama, without pagination), Walden mentions Moshe ‘Haim Luzzatto, whom the ‘Hida had omitted, because he was at the time outlawed by the cabalists to whom the ‘Hida was subjected. In the section of the authors, at the entry corresponding to Luzzatto (p. 53b, n° 137) , Walden qualifies him as “a Genius (Gaon), a wise and faithful (‘hakham ve-Hassid) person, researcher and divine cabalist (‘hoqer u-mequbal elohi).”

First page of Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Hadash, part 2, Aaron Walden, Varshaw, 1854

First page of Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Hadash, part 2, Aaron Walden, Varshaw, 1854

17Regarding the form, Walden picks up that of Benjacob, which includes a section for the authors and a section for the books. His contribution comprises 1,500 biographies and 1,450 titles19. It is true that Walden, as a bookseller, enjoyed easy access to the sources20. Moreover, considering that the Hasidic public represented a tremendous market, his work was destined for success. He prevailed and in 1870 a new edition appeared in Warsaw which was followed then by others. Among them, that of his son, Moshe Mena’hem Walden of Kielce (Poland), contains an addition, the Ikhabed av (The Father will be Honored, Piotrkow, 1923), where one can find a collection of letters by Rabbi Herschel Lewin of Berlin (1721-1800). At the time this former collaborator of Mendelssohn was also in the process of rehabilitation among the ‘hassidim. In order to “whitewash” their pedigree the descendants of this rabbi, who himself was related to the famous Zvi Ashkenazi (‘Hakham Zvi, 1658-1718), published historiographical books in which his activity in the Enlightenment was eclipsed21. In this book-annex, Walden-son adds 226 biographical entries.

18The corpus that we suggest examining is the re-edition of the Shem ha-Guedolim (Krakow-Piotrkow, 1905-1930) by Mena’hem Mendel Krengel (1847-1930), which he entitled, Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Shalem (The Integral Name of Great People). In his introduction (p. VI-VII), Krengel accused Benjacob, who noticed repetitions, of expurgating too much. He argued in the ‘Hida’s defense that the repetitions in the various volumes of the first edition from Leghorn, rather, brought to each a novelty. It is what Krengel wrote in his footnote comment called Mena’hem Tsion (The Comforter of Zion) and it is thus that we translated shalem by integral and not by complete, for it concerned reconstituting the original and not improving it by adding annexes to it, as it is the case of the Seder ha-Doroth ha-Shalem. Nevertheless, Krengel picked up Benjacob’s internal organization, taking advantage of the opportunity for adding an annex at the end of the section of the authors concerning forgotten writers (pletath soferim), where he wrote in particular about those from his city, Krakow; then in the section of the books adding a list-annex of forgotten books (pletath sefarim). In sum, he added in both sections 1,140 authors and 435 books22.

19But we cannot finish with Krengel’s works without mentioning the Eshel ha-Guedolim (The Inn of the Great People) by Elazar Lippa Gartenhaus (Brooklyn, 1958) which complements it. This contribution with already known entries was negligible, and the only legitimate addition was that of the authors it brought. Nevertheless in his long introduction (34 pages) where he elaborated, through Herz Homberg, on the misdeeds “... of the Enlightenment movement of Berlin” (p. 57-58), Gartenhaus reminded us of his ideology. He quoted indeed (p. 60) Rabbi Elimelekh of Lyzhansk (1717-1787), who was saying that God had done things well and that it was in order to fight against heresy in Berlin that he had the ‘Hida established in Italy so his purificatory books could eliminate all of their bad literature.

20According to Gartenhaus, Krengel did not want only to correct Benjacob, he wished in fact to go around and beyond him. Benjacob was really too enlightened: he can be reproached not only for his bibliographical masterpiece, Otsar ha-sefarim (Thesaurus librorum hebraicorum, Vilnius, 1880) which inventoried also the Jewish Enlightment, but also for the publication with Abraham Baer Lebensohn (1794-1879) of the Biour by Mendelssohn in Vilnius in 184723.

21Let us consider now the book entitled, Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Shlishi (The Third Name of the Great People, Vilnius, 1910). This collection picked up the binary bio-bibliographical form becoming now quasi-traditional. It provided 277 names in the first part and 524 titles in the second part. A new augmented edition came out in Keidan (Lithuania) in 1932, with 313 names for the first part and 630 titles for the second; all of these only supplied additions to just the first letter of the alphabet24.

22This Shem ha-Guedolim has a specific story which is worth being retold briefly since its author, Moshe Markovich (1855-1935), who was uneducated but not illiterate, decided to become a bibliographer after reading the ‘Hida’s Shem ha-Guedolim25. How did he manage to write a bio-bibliographical book? He asked his students at the local rabbinic academy in Raseiniai (Central Lithuania) to write down what his prodigious memory had retained during his many readings26. In Markovich’s book we can find rabbis of lost villages in Great Russia. But he does not stop here, for his knowledge extends from Moscow to Berlin, from Finland to Italy, and from Tetuan to Gibraltar27.

23We must present a book which carried the same title but which has never been published. This is the Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Shlishi (The Third Name of the Great People) by Rabbi Abraham Etting28. Abraham Etting (1875-1924), the descendant of a large rabbinic family, was a specialist of Hasidic genealogy and anecdotics29, but he also served as the principal of a rabbinic academy in Dukla (Lemberg District) beginning in 189230. In 1905, at the end of the introduction of the first volume of his Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Shalem (p. VIII), Krengel credits the young Etting for his help and grants him the title of author of the Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Shlishi (The Third Name of the Great People).

24In 1911, in his introduction to the Niflaoth ha-Rabbi (The Wonders of the Rabbi, Monograph on the Seer of Lublin), the author Moshe Mena’hem Walden (mentioned earlier) deeply thanked Etting for his help while confirming that his book was almost ready, and then added this precision (p. 2b): “It contains more than 20,000 names ...31.” Another bibliographer of that time also informed us that Etting’s book was ready to be printed and that it focused on the period lasting from the Middle Ages (1240) to the present32. As well, in almost all of the flyleaves of the books published by Etting, the Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Shlishi figured in the list of the author’s books33. Yet this book has never been published and we don’t know what happened to it.

25Nevertheless we perceive already that which seems to constitute a kind of circle of Hasidic literate people in Poland (Walden father and son, Krengel, Etting, and others like Greenwald who was Hungarian) who are interested in bio-bibliography, genealogy and hagiography. What is remarkable is that, in addition, they are in contact with one another34.

26We will now treat what one would now call the “geographical” Shem ha-Guedolim, that is, those which are not confined explicitly to either a country or a city.

27The first one is the Shem ha-Guedolim me-Erets Hagar (The Name of the Great People of Hungary: Paks, 1913-Kisvarda, 1915) by Rabbi Pin’has Zelig (Zsigmond) Schwartz (1877-1944?). This collection is divided according to Benjacob’s system but two novelties can also be found: 1) the biographical section is subdivided between the deceased and the living, and 2) some names of towns are written in Hungarian. This Shem ha-Guedolim was augmented by the author’s brother, Abraham Juda Schwartz, with the annex Avne Tsedeq (The Stones of Justice). The biographical entries amount to more than 1700 and those of the books for more than 70035.

28In 1935, the author published in Kisvarda a complementary list of authors under the title, Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Hadash me-Erets Hagar (The New Name of the Great People of Hungary). Finally in 1941, and still in Kisvarda, the author published what is now called the Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Shlishi me-Erets Hagar (The Third Name of the Great People of Hungary). This book is an extension of the list of some 200 names published in 1935, to which he added approximately 430. All of these books have been reprinted in Brooklyn in a single volume in 1959.

29We have just described a specimen of national Shem ha-guedolim, we are now going to study a local one. It concerns the Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Yerushalmi ha-Klali (The Collective Name of the Great People of Jerusalem) published in Jerusalem in 1935 by Rabbi Isaac Badhav (1859-1947). This rabbi was an universalist spirit who spent his life going to great lengths collecting books and manuscripts in study rooms (bate midrashoth) and hideouts (guenizoth) of Jerusalem36. Thus he constituted an impressive library as much by its size as by the rarity of some of the volumes and documents that it contained37.

30On the flyleaf of his Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Yerushalmi, Badhav informed us that he listed only the books of his library printed in Jerusalem, and his announcement seemed to be very promising. Nevertheless the list of books in the unique publication of 1935 takes only three pages, in which three entries of books and nine entries of articles were found. This small amount of material was surprising, since in 1937 (two years later) M.D. Gaon informed us that this book was supposed to contain the names of thousands of rabbis38. The solution to this problem has been offered to me by Professor Benayahu who holds Badhav’s manuscript. He confirmed to me in an oral communication that it was limited to some tens of names. In fact, Badhav was planning to bring together a great quantity of entries. This could perhaps also explain the 20,000 entries (certainly hyperbolic) attributed (see above) to Etting’s handwritten work. Nevertheless in this Shem ha-Guedolim which resembles a prospectus, one finds, in the section of articles, the names of G. Scholem, Jacob Na’hum Epstein and Sim’ha Assaf, all academic people. One understands better then the title, which is the collection of great people of Jerusalem, in the inclusive sense of the term.

Books subtitled Shem ha-Guedolim

31As we assumed in our method it is not only the books entitled Shem ha-Guedolim which inform on the influence of the ‘Hida’s masterpiece but also those which carry this name as a subtitle.

32The first of these books is by Rabbi Salomon ‘Hazan (end of the 18th Century-1856). It is entitled, Ha-Maaloth le-Shlomo (Salomon’s Degrees, Alexandria, 1894). Its subtitle is Shem ha-Guedolim, mahadura tinyana (The Name of the Great People, second edition). This subtitle solves also the problem of the title of the cobbler-bibliographer’s book (The Third Name of the Great People) which implies a second Shem ha-Guedolim. Nevertheless it is very likely that Markovich knew this corpus and its subtitle. In his introduction (on the right side of the first page without any pagination), the publisher who is ‘Hazan’s son criticizes Walden for his gaps regarding the Sepharadic rabbis and their writings. ‘Hazan’s work is therefore qualified as a “second edition” because it is aimed at completing the ‘Hida’s work and filling in these gaps39. ‘Hazan picks up Benjacob’s internal organization with nevertheless one modification. Instead of two alphabets (one for the authors and one for the books), each letter of the alphabet is divided into two sections. His biographical list compises 218 names and that of the books, 872 titles.

33The second of these books is the Peer ‘hakhme medinatenu (The Glory of the Sages of our Country, Maramarossziget, 1910) by Rabbi Jekutiel Juda (Leopold) Greenwald40 (1889-1955). It is subtitled Shem ha-Guedolim. It is constituted of a biographical list of Hungarian rabbis, which is preceded by a history and study of propagation of the Tora in this region and ends with a praise to the Hasidic movement as a last chapter (p. 34-36). Greenwald’s list comprises 971 names. This book adds to that by Schwartz (Shem ha-Guedolim me-Erets Hagar). Schwartz’s and Greenwald’s emphasis on biography seems to reflect well the situation which prevailed in Hungary at the end of last century and the beginning of our’s when the tension between assimilated-reformed people and the orthodox was easily discernable41.

34The last collection is the Artsoth ha-’Haïm (Country of Life) by Dov Baer Schwartz (Brooklyn, 1992) which is subtitled Shem ha-Guedolim le-Guedole Israel be-Ameriqa (The Name of the Great People of Israel in America). The author claims to be a follower of the ‘Hida for the division between the authors and the books and explicitly picks up Benjacob’s internal organization (p. 2b). This book presents itself with a rather curious aspect. Indeed, in order to be listed the authors must be virtuous (kasher) and they must have exerted a favorable influence (p. 2a). Therefore places are limited and the author is forced to integrate into his list the heads of European rabbinic academies who passed through the United States (when they went to raise funds), while at the same time ignoring rabbinic authors who lived and published in this country (flyleaf). In his introduction (haqdama, p. 2b) the author apologizes for omitting many rabbis but this is, he says, one of the shortcomings of his book. In fact the criterion of selection is placed so high that it retains in all only 170 authors, while the list of books comprises 1,072 entries42.

35D.B. Schwartz’s book belongs to the Hungarian school described earlier and represents still today a clear indication of the attachment shown to the ‘Hida’s Shem ha-Guedolim.

36By traveling and collecting bio-bibliographical data in Western Europe the ‘Hida has generated this literary movement of which the influence has been felt as far as Lithuania, passing through Poland, Hungary, the Mediterranean countries and finally up to the distant America.

37Our study allows us to review six books entitled Shem ha-Guedolim (aside from the ‘Hida’s) and three others which carried this name as a subtitle.

38What does one say in the way of a conclusion, except that, despite the selective view of most of the authors who wrote according to one school, the influence of the Shem ha-Guedolim has been nonetheless beneficial, since it allows us to know better the rabbinic authors and their writings from the 19th century until our time?

Haut de page


1 M. Steinschneider, Jewish Literature, London, 1857, reprinted in New York, 1970, p. 252.
2 The publication of reference is by A. Freiman (Frankfurt, 1934). A French translation just came out, Les voyageurs juifs du XVIIIe siècle (Le Hida), Aix-en-Provence, 1996 (transl. H. Harboun).
3 The Hida is also the author of 126 works, of which 82 are still handwritten.
4 Menahem ben Salomon, Beit ha-Be’hira (The House of Election), Perush Massekheth Avoth (Commentary of the Treatise of the Fathers), New York, 1952, p. 56-62.
5 Ed. A. Berliner/D. Hoffmann, in Otsar Tov, Berlin, 1877-78, p. 75-77.
6 Ed. Filipowski, London, 1857, reprinted in Jerusalem, 1963, p. 217-227.
7 Ed. M. Breuer, Jerusalem, 1983, p. 157-159.
8 Itshaq Raphael, Rishonim ve-A’haronim (The Ancients and the Moderns), Tel Aviv, 1957, p. 133.
9 Ibid., p. 189.
10 Ibid., p. 190.
11 After 1728, according to M. Steinschneider (op. cit., p. 251), ca. 1747 for J.D. Eisenstein (Otsar Israel, New York, 1907-1913, reprinted in Jerusalem, ed. Shiloh, no date, vol. IV, p. 135), after 1749 for N. Maskil le-Eitan (in Seder ha-Doroth ha-Shalem, Jerusalem, 1988, vol. I, p. 25), and 1746 for S. Brisman, A History and Guide to Judaic Bibliography, Cincinnati-New York, 1977, vol. I, p. 32. Therefore there is a majority of opinions for the mid-18th century.
12 S. Brisman, op. cit., p. 16-17.
13 Ibid., p. 30 and 32.
14 Ibid., p. 77.
15 R. Kircheims publication (Krotoshin-Frankfurt, 1843-1847) comprised still 3 volumes.
16 V.A. Marcus (1843-1916), Ha-’Hassiduth (Hasidism), Bene Brak, 1954, p. 130 (transl. from the German by M. Schenfeld). The master of the rabbi of Kotzk, Rabbi Simha Bunim of Przysucha (1767-1827), had already initiated this change within Hasidic studies.
17 A. Walden, Miqdash meath (The Small Sanctuary), Warsaw, 1890-1897, reprinted in Israel, 1974, beginning of vol. I, no pagination.
18 S. Brisman (op. cit., p. 80) observes too many Hasidic anecdotes in Waldens but the Hida also tells small stories.
19 S. Brisman, op. cit., p.79. In his Seder ha-Doroth ha-’Hadash (The New Chronology of the Generations), Lemberg, 1865 (reprinted in Satu-Mare, 1940, and in Brooklyn, 1959), M. Budek (ca. 1825-1875) wrote a story of Hasidism in the old historiographical manner, accompanied by a brief bibliography, but this work is with all respects inferior to Waldens.
20 W. Zeitlin, Bibliotheca Hebraica post-Mendelssohniana, Leipzig, 1891-95, p. 403.
21 V. Tsvi Ezechiel Michelson, Tsvi le-Tsadiq (The Beauty of the Just), Piotrkow, 1903 and Arie Juda Leib Lifschütz, Avoth atara le-Banim (The Fathers, crowns of the Children), Warsaw, “Shalsheleth ha-Yehussin” (Genealogies), 1927, p. 32-35.
22 Ch.B. Friedberg writes in his Bet Eked Sefarim (Bibliographical Lexicon), Tel Aviv, 1954, vol. III, p. 1013, n° 1617, that Krengels historical additions on The Sages of Krakow are taken word for word from his Lu’hoth Zikaron (Biographies of the rabbis of Krakow), Frankfurt, 1904.
23 V.I.A. Benjacob, Otsar ha-Sefarim, Vilnius, 1880, p. 633, n° 259.
24 S. Brisman, op. cit., p. 82.
25 A.B.Z. Shurin, Qesheth guiborim (A Rainbow of Heroes), Jerusalem, 1964, p. 180.
26 Ibid., p. 180-181.
27 Ibid., p. 182.
28 In his approval of J. J. Greenwalds book (mentioned later), the heading reads Etting but the signature is Ettinger. In Le-Toldoth ha-Qehiloth be-Polin (History of the Communities of Poland, Jerusalem, 1978, p. 71), Tsvi Horowitz writes that the family originated from Ettingen in Bavaria. We opted for Etting which is the form most used by the author.
29 The most famous of his books in this domain is the Si’hoth ‘hulin shel talmide ‘hakhamim (Profane Conversations of the Sages), Munkacs, 1909.
30 S.N. Gottlieb, Ohale Shem (The Tents of Shem), Pinsk, 1912, p. 396.
31 Moshe Menahem Walden, Niflaoth ha-Rabbi (The Wonders of the Rabbi), Warsaw, 1912, reprinted in Bene Brak, no date.
32 S.N. Gottlieb, op. cit., p. 396.
33 S.H. Porush, Entsiqlopedia la-’Hassiduth (Encyclopedia of Hasidism), Jerusalem, vol. I, p. 26.
34 We mentioned earlier (note 5, previous page) Ettings approval to Greenwalds book but there is also an approval by Greenwald to one of Ettings books. V.S.H. Porush, Ibid.
35 Brisman, op. cit., p. 96.
36 I. Raphaël and G. bath Yehuda, Entsiqlopedia shel ha-Tsionuth ha-Datith (Encyclopedia of Religious Zionism), Jerusalem, 1958, vol. I, p. 242.
37 Ibid.
38 M.D. Gaon, Yehude ha-Mizra’h be-Erets Israel (The Eastern Jews in Israel), Jerusalem, 1937, vol. II, p. 129.
39 A.B.Z. Shurin (op. cit., p. 180) makes a mistake when he writes that Waldens glossary was the second (ha-Sheni) and that following him Markovich would be placed in third position. Nevertheless Waldens corpus was entitled the new (ha-’Hadash) and not the second (ha-Sheni).
40 English translation of Grünwald. This rabbi, a prolific historian (V.G. Kressel, Lexicon ha-Safruth ha-Ivrith (Lexicon of Modern Hebrew Literature), Merhavia, 1965, vol. I, p. 511-512) emigrated to the United States in 1924 and lived in Columbus (Ohio).
41 On the flyleaf of his Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Shlishi, Schwartz precises that his list encompasses the names of orthodox rabbis of the country. As for Greenwald, in Qoroth ha-Tora ve-ha-Emuna be-Hungaria (History of the Tora and Faith in Hungary, Budapest, 1921, p. 79, n. 1), he mentions that according to a state statistic, there were, in Hungary before the first world war, 318 orthodox congregations, 182 reformed congregations and 60 congregations which didnt have any prejudice and met the Status quo.
42 For a comparative yet older bibliography, see Ephraim Deinard, Qoheleth America (Catalogue of Hebrew Books Printed in America from 1735-1926), St. Louis, 1926. Already 989 books are inventoried, including those by the reformed congregations, which assumes a number of authors certainly more important than the 170 by Schwartz.
Haut de page

Table des illustrations

Titre First page of Shem ha-Guedolim ha-Hadash, part 2, Aaron Walden, Varshaw, 1854
Fichier image/jpeg, 46k
Haut de page

Pour citer cet article

Référence papier

Yohanan Lederman, « On the Influence of Rabbi ‘Haim Joseph David Azulai (‘Hida)’s Shem Ha-Guedolim on the Hebraic Bio-bibliography », Bulletin du Centre de recherche français à Jérusalem, 2 | 1998, 101-113.

Référence électronique

Yohanan Lederman, « On the Influence of Rabbi ‘Haim Joseph David Azulai (‘Hida)’s Shem Ha-Guedolim on the Hebraic Bio-bibliography », Bulletin du Centre de recherche français à Jérusalem [En ligne], 2 | 1998, mis en ligne le 20 juin 2008, Consulté le 23 mars 2017. URL :

Haut de page

Droits d’auteur

© Bulletin du Centre de recherche français à Jérusalem

Haut de page