Posts Tagged nasi
Arnold E. Franklin
320 pages | 6 x 9 | 5 illus.
Cloth Sep 2012 | ISBN 978-0-8122-4409-0 | $65.00s | £42.50
Reviewed by Geoffrey Herman
In the 11th century, the Jewish community of Palestine was shaken by a scandal. According to a fragmentary letter found in the Cairo Geniza penned shortly after the incident, a certain individual had passed himself off as a nasi, one descending from the family of King David. He had “acquired for himself a good reputation and had in his possession a genealogy (a list of his ancestors)”. With these he had achieved a position of power and many submitted to his authority. After two years it became known that his lineage was inaccurate. And yet, as the author of the letter bemoans, even after it became known that his lineage was fictitious, “they were not ashamed or embarrassed to honour him, saying that he was (nevertheless) a sage”. He was not, however, allowed to maintain his position for long and “those who fear God” forcibly removed him from the city of Tiberias, exiling him to the “Lands of Edom.” Read the rest of this entry »