JACOB KIMCHI AND SHALOM BUZAGLO

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The greater part of the eighteenth century was comparatively uneventful as far as the inner life of the Anglo-Jewish community was concerned. Politically, we find a number of eminent men like Samson Gideon (Abudiente), Emanuel Mendez da Costa the eminent scientist, Baron d'Aguilar, and others. Political events, too, of singular importance, such as the Bill for the Naturalisation of the Jews, 1753, happened in this period. About the inner life of the community, however, very little is recorded. The term of office of the Ashkenazi Rabbi Aaron or Uri Phcebus Hart1 was an era of stagnation. The important struggle he had had at the beginning of his career had resulted in the establishment of the Hamburger, or Hambro Synagogue, as it was afterwards termed. The differences,)between Uri Phoebus Hart and his adversaries Jochanan Holleschau and Mardochai Hamburger, and the great stir which this affair created in the Ashkenazi community of London, have already been dealt with in a masterful paper by the late Prof. David Kaufmann, printed in this Society's Transactions, vol. iii. pp. 102-125. In this paper2 Prof. Kaufmann gave a sketch of Jewish communal life in London from the beginning of the German Jewish community (about 1690) until about 1750, and made some short references to as late a date as 1772. The chief part of his narrative is based on a pamphlet3 which

1 He was born about 1670 and died in 1756.

2 Rabbi Zewi Ashkenazi and his Family in London.

3 m in the volume entitled 21 H?WI DMIKJn nm&TI. SeeZedner, Catalogue of Hebrew Books in the British Museum, London, 1867, p. 325.

[caption id="attachment_3390" align="alignnone" width="1025"]49 JACOB KIMME[/caption]

was printed in Amsterdam and also in London, 1707, and which records in detail the disputes which led to the foundation of the Hambro Synagogue. Uri Hart was appointed Rabbi in 1705 and died in 1756. The Hambro Synagogue was built in the year 5485 (1725). From that date we do not hear anything more about the Rabbi until the year 1755y when Jacob Kimchi refers to him in his pamphlet on the Shechita question.

Jacob Kimchi was a descendant of the great Kimchi family, the most famous members of which were the great Hebrew scholar, linguist, and grammarian, David Kimchi, his father Joseph, and his grandfather, Isaac Kimchi. The chronology of the Kimchi family was published by Dr. P. Frankl in the Breslau Monatsschrift, 1884 (pp. 552-561). Jacob's father was Samuel, Rabbi in Constantinople, contemporary of Jehuda Rozanes, the author of the Mishneh Lammelech, one of the most important commentaries on the Code of Maimonides.

Jacob Kimchi seems to have studied diligently under his father, as he became wTell versed in Talmudics, according to Azulai, who met him in London. Azulai characterises him as " a sharp and well-versed scholar,"1 a title which is generally reserved for men of exceptional attainments. How old he was wrhen he left Constantinople we cannot ascertain. It seems, however, that he was already in the prime

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