Today’s Yahrtzeits and History – 8-9 Teves


Ezra Hasofer and Nechemya

Rav Ezra of Gerona (1227), the Ramban’s teacher in Kabalah. He himself learned Kabbalah from Rav Yitzchak Sagi Nahor, son of the Ravad III.

Rabbeinu Yosef, son of Shmuel Hanaggid, and son-in-law of Rav Nissim Gaon of Kirouan was murdered in an Arab pogrom with another 1500 Jews in Spain (1067).

Rav Yehoshua Basis (1860). Chacham and Chief Rabbi of Tnisia for many years.

Rav Yehuda (“Reb Yiddel”) Weber (1920-2006). Born in Vodkert, Hungary to Rav Yissacher Weber, a descendent of the Bach, and of Rebbetzin Chana, a niece of the Arugas Bosem. After his Bar Mitzvah, Yehuda was sent to learn in Pupa under Rav Yaakov Yechezkel Grunwald, the Vayaged Yaakov, the Pupa Rebbe, who was his rebbi muvhak for 7 years. Rav Yehuda then served as mashgiach of Pupa. When the yeshiva was closed in 1944, Rav Yehuuda spent 6 months in the local work camps before being deported to Bergen Belsen. In 1946, his sister introduced him to his Rebbetzin, Batsheva. A year later, his sister, Miriam, married the Pupa Rebbe. Both families settled in Antwerp, then moved to Williamsburg, in New York, in 1950. In 1952, he was appointed Rosh Yeshiva of the newly established Pupa Yeshiva, first located in Queens, then in Ossining, in Westchester County. Although his family stayed in Williamsburg, Reb Yiddel made the 40-mile drive for four decades.

Today in History – 8 Teves

· A taanis tzibur was declared to commemorate the translation of the Torah to a foreign language (Greek) under King Ptolemy (Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim 580:2)
· Adolf Eichmann, HY”Sh, is sentenced to death, 1961.

Today in History – 9 Teves

· Yosef, the son of Shmuel Hanaggid, and son-in-law of Rav Nissan of Kirouan, was murdered in an Arab pogrom with another 1,500 Jews in Muslim Spain, 1066.
· Avraham Ibn Ezra begun work on his Iggeres HaShabbos, a work defending the traditional reckoning of Shabbos and Yom Tov against the trend to begin them only at day break rather than the previous night, 1158.
· Ritual murder massacre at Fulda resulted in the death of 32 Jews, 1235. Following this event, Emperor Frederick II declared that since Jews are prohibited from eating animal blood, they would surely be banned from using human blood. He forbade anyone from accusing Jews of this charge.
· The Pope bans conversion of Jewish children without consent of their parents, 1420, a ban which was often ignored.
· French Captain Alfred Dreyfus was falsely convicted of passing secret French military documents found in the German embassy in Paris, 1894. He was court-martialed for treason and sent into exile to Devil’s Island. A worldwide campaign to vindicate his name eventually led to his pardon.
· Heinrich Himmler and Reinhard Heydrich name Adolf Eichmann leader of “Referat IV B” (in charge of transport of Jews for Final Solution), 1939.
· The United Nations repeals the Zionism is Racism proclamation, 1991.

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    The Mechaber in Shulchan Aruch (O. Ch. 580) lists additional fast days.

    One of the fast days is on the 9th day in Teves. “It is unknown what
    Tzoroh happened on that day”.

    The Taz writes” תימה גדולה (It’s a great wonder) that the Bais Yosef
    doesn’t know what happened that day. In our Selichos (Ezkero Motzok)
    it is written that Ezra Hasofer died on the 9th of the month”.

    It is interesting, this Piyut is said, only by Ashkenazim. The Sefardim
    say the Piyut “Sha’a Elyon” and the Piyut “Yoshev Bashomayim”.
    In both of these Piyutim, it is mentioned that Ezra Hasofer died on the
    10th of Teves.

    The Mechaber, being Sefardi, must have held that Ezra died
    on the 10th and therefore there shouldn’t be a wonder why he
    didn’t know what happened on the 9th of Teves.

    The Tosfos Chadoshim on Megillas Ta’anis writes that
    Yeisho Hanotzri ym”s was born on the 9th of Teves.
    Chazal were scared of the Nochrim, to publicize
    that we fast on his birthday.

  2. How could Rav Yosef, the son of Shmuel Hanagid, have been murdered TWICE – on the 8th of Teves 1067, and almost a year earlier, on Teves 9, 1066?


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