Elijah ben Solomon Zalman (Vilna Gaon)


Elijah ben Solomon Zalman (Vilna Gaon)
(1720-97)
   Lithuanian talmudist. After travelling throughout Poland and Germany he eventually settled in Vilna. He encouraged the translation of works on natural science, but was opposed to philosophy and the Haskalah. He also led the oppositon to the Hasidic movement and was regarded as the spiritual leader of the Mitnaggedim. He wrote commentaries on the Bible; annotations on the Talmud, midrash and Zohar; and works on mathematics, the geography of Palestine, and Hebrew grammar. In his studies of halakhah he sought to establish critical texts of rabbinic sources; he avoided pilpul and based his rulings on the plain meaning of the text.

Dictionary of Jewish Biography. .

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  • ELIJAH BEN SOLOMON ZALMAN — (the Vilna Gaon or Elijah Gaon ; acronym Ha GRA = Ha Gaon Rabbi Eliyahu; 1720–1797), one of the greatest spiritual and intellectual leaders of Jewry in modern times. A man of iron will, Elijah combined the personal life of an intellectual hermit… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Elijah ben-Solomon Zalman — (the Vilna Gaon) (1720–97)    Lithuanian scholar. The Jewish community of Vilna, Lithuania, was founded in the 16th century. From the early 17th century it was renowned as a centre of Jewish learning, and Elijah was the greatest of its sons. He… …   Who’s Who in Jewish History after the period of the Old Testament

  • Elijah ben Solomon — born April 23, 1720, Sielec, Lith., Russian Empire died Oct. 9, 1797, Vilna Lithuanian scholar and Jewish leader. Born into a long line of scholars, he traveled in Poland and Germany before settling in Vilna, the cultural centre of eastern… …   Universalium

  • ISSACHAR BAER BEN SOLOMON ZALMAN — (Klazki; d. 1807), Lithuanian talmudist. The brother of elijah b. solomon Zalman the Gaon of Vilna, he was also known as Issachar Baer Ashers, in accordance with the custom then prevailing, since his father in law was Asher Ginsberg. Issachar… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Vilna Gaon —    see Elijah ben Solomon Zalman …   Who’s Who in Jewish History after the period of the Old Testament

  • RAGOLER, ABRAHAM BEN SOLOMON — (18th century), Lithuanian rabbi and preacher, brother of elijah b. solomon Zalman Gaon of Vilna. Abraham was born in Vilna, but because of the controversy between Ḥasidim and Mitnaggedim he moved to Ragola and was thereafter called Abraham of… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • ELIJAH PHINEHAS BEN MEIR — (c. 1742–1821), scholar, kabbalist, and maskil. Elijah was born in Vilna, but in his youth, after his father s death, he traveled extensively among the Jewish communities of Europe. In each city that he visited he furthered his Jewish learning,… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • VILNA — (Pol. Wilno, Lithuanian Vilnius), from 1323 capital of the grand duchy of lithuania ; from 1940 to 1991 capital of the Lithuanian S.S.R.; from 1991 capital of Lithuania; called by East European Jewry, especially in the modern period, the… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Abraham ben Abraham — Abraham ben Abraham, also known as Count Valentine (Valentin, Walentyn) Potocki (Pototzki or Pototski), is a legendary figure who is claimed to have been a Polish nobleman of the Potocki family who converted to Judaism and was burned at the stake …   Wikipedia

  • VOLOZHINER, ḤAYYIM BEN ISAAC — (1749–1821), rabbi and educator, leading disciple of R. Elijah b. Solomon Zalman the Gaon of Vilna and of R. Aryeh Gunzberg (author of Sha agat Aryeh). R. Ḥayyim was the acknowledged spiritual leader of non ḥasidic Russian Jewry of his day.… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism


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