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MEÏR HA-KOHEN:

French scholar of the thirteenth century; born at Narbonne; died at Toledo, Spain, whither he had emigrated in 1263 (Israeli, "Yesod 'Olam," ii. 35, ed. Berlin, 1846). Meïr occupied himself particularly with the study of the Masorah; and, according to Menahem Meïri ("Ḳiryat Sefer"), he was one of the five rabbis who, by comparing a great number of manuscripts, endeavored to establish a correctly revised Pentateuch for France and Germany.

Meïr's identity has been frequently mistaken: Bartolocci ("Bibl. Rab. Magna," iv. 20) identifies him with the author of the "Haggahot Maimuniyyot," a German scholar of the end of the thirteenth century; Zunz ("Literaturgesch." p. 283), confounding him with Moses ha-Kohen of Lunel, attributes to him the "Hassagot," or strictures on Maimonides; while Carmoly ("Ha-Karmel," vii. 58) identifies him with Meïr Ẓarfati, the supposed author of a poem against the "Moreh," beginning with the words "Anshe minut" (comp. Steinschneider, "Hebr. Bibl." xiii.). It may be added that S. Sachs ("Cat. of the Günzburg Library," p. 46) attributes to Meïr ha-Kohen the "Sefer ha-Me'orot," which in reality is the work of Meïr b. Simeon.

Bibliography:
  • Gross, Gallia Judaica, p. 422;
  • Renan-Neubauer, Les Rabbins Français, pp. 731-733.
G. M. Sel.
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