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Collected Essays: v. 2$
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Haym Soloveitchik

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781904113980

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781904113980.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 26 January 2022

Characterizing Medieval Talmudists: A Case Study

Characterizing Medieval Talmudists: A Case Study

(p.106) Chapter Six Characterizing Medieval Talmudists: A Case Study
Collected Essays: v. 2

Haym Soloveitchik

Liverpool University Press

This chapter provides some critiques on Grossman's study, Ḥakhmei Ashkenaz ha-Rishonim. Here, Grossman has characterized R. Shelomoh b. Shimshon (Rabbenu Sasson) as a decisor (posek) who tended towards stringency without serious regard to the economic cost of his rulings. Moreover, he ‘opposed innovation, making any changes in the status quo’, and he ‘preserved custom studiously and defended the received communal practices with zeal’. Following Grossman, Rami Reiner recently extended Rabbenu Sasson's conservative outlook to include a blind acceptance of the Halakhot Gedolot. Grossman and Reiner naturally document these assessments. The chapter scrutinizes these portrayals as well as the various pieces of evidence that have been adduced.

Keywords:   Avraham Grossman, medieval talmudists, Ḥakhmei Ashkenaz ha-Rishonim, Halakhot Gedolot, Rami Reiner, Shelomoh b. Shimshon, Rabbenu Sasson

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