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Hebrew Poems from Spain$
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David Goldstein

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9781904113669

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781904113669.001.0001

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Judah Al-Harizi

Judah Al-Harizi

(p.135) Judah Al-Harizi
Hebrew Poems from Spain

David Goldstein

Liverpool University Press

This chapter assesses the poetry of Judah al-Harizi. Like Joseph Ibn Zabara, Judah al-Harizi’s fame depends mainly on his collection of rhymed prose narratives, known as ‘Tahkemoni’. He was born in Spain in the second half of the twelfth century, and the end of that century saw him living in Provence where he was engaged in the work of translation from Arabic into Hebrew, in which field he attained great eminence. He was a devoted follower of Maimonides, began a translation of his commentary to the Mishna, and completed a translation of his great philosophical work, ‘The Guide for the Perplexed’. In addition to his secular poetry, Judah al-Harizi also wrote poems expressing religious devotion to the Holy Land, on the pattern of those of Judah ha-Levi. The chapter then looks at two of his poems: A Secret Kept and The Lute Sounds.

Keywords:   Judah al-Harizi, rhymed prose narratives, Tahkemoni, Hebrew translation, Maimonides, secular poetry, religious devotion, Holy Land, Jewish poet, Jewish poetry

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