Judah ben Yakar

Judah ben Yakar (d. between 1201 and 1218) was a rabbi and talmudist.

Born in Provence,[1] he later studied under Isaac ben Abraham of Dampierre in northern France.[2] Surviving documents place him in Barcelona in 1175, and establish that he died between 1201 and 1218.[1]

He was the teacher of Nahmanides (Ramban), and through him Nahmanides learned the scholarship of the Tosafists.[1] He is quoted frequently in the works of Nahmanides, and occasionally in those of Shlomo ibn Aderet (Rashba), Yom Tov Asevilli (Ritva), and others.[3] He was known as "a great storehouse of the two Talmuds".[4] He wrote a commentary on the Jerusalem Talmud - apparently the first such commentary - which is no longer extant.[5] According to some, he also wrote a commentary to the Babylonian Talmud, but this too is lost.[6] He wrote a commentary on the prayer liturgy, known as Maayan Ganim, which was often quoted by later rishonim, particularly David Abudirham.[1]

According to Gershon Scholem and Moshe Idel he was one of the earliest kabbalists, but Haviva Pedaya disagreed.[7]

ר"י הבחוררבי יצחק סגי נהור
יהודה בר יקר



  1. ^ a b c d "Judah ben Yakar". Encyclopaedia Judaica. Retrieved 18 July 2017.
  2. ^ Lekutot HaRamban, Pesachim 117b s.v. veani omer
  3. ^ For example: Chiddushei HaRamban to Kiddushin 22a, 26a, 27a, 65b, 75b; Chiddushei haRashba Bava Batra 82a; Chiddushei HaRitva Bava Batra 82b; and many others
  4. ^ Shut HaRashbash, 89
  5. ^ Shut Harashba 1:523; Tashbetz, Magen Avod 4:11 (p.67)
  6. ^ שלם יהלום, ר' יהודה בר יקר – תולדותיו ומקומו במשנת הרמב"ן, סידרא יז, תשס"א-תשס"ב, עמ' 88.
  7. ^ גרשם שלום, "לחקר קבלת רבי יצחק בן יעקב הכהן" תרביץ ג תרצ"ב, עמ' 277; משה אידל רמב"ן: קבלה הלכה ומנהיגות רוחנית, תרביץ סד, תשנ"ה, עמ' 542; חביבה פדיה, הרמב"ן - התעלות: זמן מחזורי וטקסט קדוש תל אביב תשס"ג עמ' 89, הע' 5.