Oxford Jewish Thought

Lectures, essays, questions & articles

by Rabbi Eli Brackman

Simcha Luzzatto: Jewish Legal Disputes in the Jewish Ghetto of Venice - 500 Years

500 Years of Jewish Life in Venice - The New York TimesThis essay will present the life and interesting legal rulings of one of the most prominent rabbis of the Jewish Ghetto of Venice, Simcha Luzzatto, known also as Simone Luzzatto (1583 - 1663), who served as the chief rabbi of the Jewish Ghetto of Venice between 1648 and his passing in 1663. A short biography on Luzzatto was written in Hebrew by Moses Avigdor Shulvass (1909–1988), as an introduction to Ma'amar al Yehudei Venezia - Tract on the Jews of Venice (Jerusalem: Mosad Bialik, 1950)[1]. In this essay, I will aim to present an outline of his life, three areas of his contribution to Jewish scholarship and proceed to focus on the main subject of this essay - a known controversial opinion of Luzzatto arguing for the permissibili… Read More »

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