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    Rashba

The Rashba, Rabbi Shlomo Ben Aderet, was born in Barcelona in 1235. He was a successful banker, as well as being a leader of the Spanish Jewish community of the time. The Rashba was a halachist, talmudist and rabbi, who was the student of the Ramban and Rabbeinu Yonah. In turn, he was the teacher of the Ritva and the Rabbeinu Behaye. The Rashba was the rabbi of the Main Synagogue in Barcelona for 50 years.

 As an outstanding scholar, the Rashba produced at least 3,000 responsa. His influence was so broad that he responded to questions from Italy, Portugal, France, Germany, areas of Asia Minor (Anatolia) as well as Spain. These responsa covered vast topics of Judaism and are widely quoted by halachic authorities. His responsa show an opposition to messianism and prophetic pretension as phenomena.

The Rashba authorized the translation of Rambam's commentary on the Mishnah from Arabic to Hebrew and supported him during debates over his work, but in essence he was opposed to the Rambam's philosophic-rational approach. In this vein, he was part of the Bet Din of Barcelona that forbade men younger than 25 learning secular philosophy of the natural sciences. Even so, the Bet Din permitted the study of medicine at a younger age. 

The Rashba's written works cover kashrut, mikveh, talmudic discussions, laws relating to festivals and Shabbat, and other topics in Judaism. 

He passed away in 1310.

 


 

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