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Keli Yakar, R. Ephraim b. Aaron of Luntshits, Amsterdam 1709

כלי יקר

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  • Lot Number 53524
  • Title (English) Keli Yakar
  • Title (Hebrew) כלי יקר
  • Author R. Ephraim b. Aaron of Luntshits
  • City Amsterdam
  • Publisher דפוס יעקב אלואריש סוטו, משה אבן יקר בראנדון ובנימין די יונך
  • Publication Date 1709
  • Estimated Price - Low 200
  • Estimated Price - High 500

  • Item # 2412260
  • End Date
  • Start Date

Physical Description

[2], 98 ff., fplio, 303:193 mm., nice margins, usual age staining, old hands and and stamp on title. A good copy bound in modern boards.


Detail Description

Commentary to the Pentateuch in homiletic style that was subsequently included in various editions of the rabbinical Bible (Mikra'ot Gedolot) by R. Ephraim b. Aaron of Luntshits (Leczyca; 1550–1619), rabbi and renowned preacher. He was known as "Ephraim of Luntshits," the popular pronunciation of Leczyca among Polish Jews. The name "Solomon" was added some time after 1601. In his youth R. Ephraim was sent to study in the yeshivah of R. Solomon Luria. At an early age he had already gained a reputation as a preacher, in which capacity he traveled to Lublin, Lemberg, Jaroslaw, and other towns. It is not known whether he ever held a regular communal post before he became head of a yeshivah in Lemberg when he was already past fifty. In 1604, he arrived in Prague where he served as president of the rabbinical court and head of the yeshivah, but relinquished his rabbinical post in the last year of his life. As a preacher he was distinguished for his lucid and fascinating sermons. He addressed the heads of the Council of Four Lands when they met in Lublin and was apparently on friendly terms with the leaders of that council on whose recommendation he was appointed rosh yeshivah in Lemberg. R. Ephraim's sermons shed much light on the religious and communal life of the Polish-Jewish community of his time. He railed against the wealthy members of the congregation whose passion for money and luxury caused them to withhold assistance from their needy brethren and he criticized their pretensions to spiritual and religious status on the basis of their commercial success. He said that wealth corrupts and destroys the character of men when they do not appreciate its purpose. At the same time, he complained about the poor who wished to enjoy the charity of the rich without making any effort to provide for their needs. In addition, he attacked certain casuistic methods of talmudic study (pilpul) which often neglected the truth, and the desire for personal aggrandizement among communal leaders. <p>R. Ephraim's sermons were collected and published in various books: Olelot Efrayim (Lublin, 1590); Orah le-Hayyim (ibid., 1595); Siftei Da'at (Prague, 1610); Ammudei Shesh (ibid., 1617); Petihot u-She'arim (Zolkiew, 1799). He also compiled a book of sermons entitled Rivevot Efrayim, which is occasionally mentioned in his other works. He composed three Selihot in connection with the invasion of Prague in 1611 by the army of the bishop of Passau.


Hebrew Description:

נדפס פעם שלישי במצות... יצחק יהודה רודריגש והוגה בעיון... דפוס יעקב אלואריש סוטו, משה אבן יקר בראנדון ובנימין די יונך, בשנת תתן אמת' ליעקב ח'ס'ד לא'ברהם



Bibliography of the Hebrew Book 1470-1960 # 000170543; H. H. Ben-Sasson, Hagut ve-Hanhagah (1959), p. 263; EJ