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Joseph ben Meir ibn Migash or Migas (1077 - 1141) ( ) was a Rabbi, Posek, and Rosh Yeshiva in Lucenamarker. He is also known as Ri Migash (ר"י מיגאש), the Hebrew acronym for "Rabbi Joseph Migash".

Biography

Ibn Migash was born in Sevillemarker (some say Granadamarker). He moved to Lucenamarker at the age of 12 to study under the renowned Talmudist Isaac Alfasi. He studied under Alfasi at Lucena for fourteen years. Shortly before his death (1103), Alfasi ordained Ibn Migash as a rabbi, and - passing over his own son - also appointed him, then 26, to be his successor as Rosh Yeshiva (seminary head). Ibn Migash held this position for 38 years.

It is clear that ibn Migash was a great scholar: Maimonides in the introduction to his Mishnah commentary says "the Talmudic learning of this man amazes every one who understands his words and the depth of his speculative spirit; so that it might almost be said of him that his equal has never existed." Judah ha-Levi eulogizes him in six poems which are full of his praise. Ibn Migash's best known student is probably Maimon, the father and teacher of Maimonides.

There is a tradition that Maimonides himself was a pupil of ibn Migash. This probably arose from the frequent references in Maimonides' works to him as an authority. It is unlikely that he was literally taught by him, as Maimonides was 11 years old at the time of Ibn Migash's death.

Works

Ibn Migash authored over 200 Responsa, "She'elot uTeshuvot Ri MiGash" - originally in Arabic - many of which are quoted in Bezalel Ashkenazi's Shittah Mekubetzet. He specified Chananel Ben Chushiel and Alfasi as his authorities.

He also authored a Talmudic commentary - chiddushim (novellae) on tractates Baba Batra and Shevuot - which is quoted by various Rishonim. His other works have been lost.

External links and references

Ibn Migas, Joseph (Jehosef) Ben Meïr Ha-Levi, jewishencyclopedia.com


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