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MENAHEM VARDIMAS BEN PEREZ THE ELDER:

French tosafist and liturgist; died at Dreux 1224. The name "Vardimas," found in Talmud Babli (Shab. 118b) as a bye-name of Menahem bar Jose, was adopted by this tosafist probably to distinguish him from other persons bearing the name "Menahem." According to Gross, Menahem is identical with the person of the same name mentioned by Samuel of Falaise as having been his master, the epithet "Ha-Ḳadosh" given by Samuel meaning simply "the Pious" and not "the Martyr."

Menahem's authority in halakic matters is invoked by Moses of Coucy ("Semag," § 27) and by many others. He is mentioned among those who took part in the famous discussion on phylacteries, which, according to Gedaliah ibn Yaḥya ("Shalshelet ha-Ḳabbalah," p. 52a), was held in Menahem's house. In a manuscript commentary on the Pentateuch (Neubauer, "Cat. Bodl. Hebr. MSS." No. 270) Menahem is cited as a Biblical commentator. A liturgical poem of his on the sacrifice of Isaac is inserted in the ritual of Rosh ha-Shanah.

Bibliography:
  • Zunz, Z. G. pp. 53, 193;
  • idem, Literaturgesch. p. 328;
  • Neubauer, in R. E. J. xvii. 153;
  • idem, in Geiger's Jüdische Zeit. ix. 218;
  • Gross, Gallia Judaica, p. 173.
S. S. I. Br.
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