AḤA SAR HA-BIRAH ("CASTELLAN"):
By: S. Mendelsohn
A Palestinian amora of the third generation (fourth century), contemporary of Tanḥum b. Ḥiyya of Ke-far Acco. No original decisions or doctrines are recorded under his name in the Talmud; but in behalf of others he reported several Halakot and precedents. If his surname did not come to him by inheritance (compare Jonathan Sar ha-Birah), the social position indicated by it enabled him to be helpful to his unfortunate coreligionists. On one occasion, with the assistance of Tanḥum, he ransomed some Jewish captives who were brought to Tiberias (Yeb. 45). From the fact that he is said to have twice submitted Halakot to the sages at Usha, it seems probable that this place, a former seat of the Sanhedrin, was, even down to Aḥa's days, a center of attraction for learned Jews (Ket. 22a, 88a; B. B. 146a; 'Ar. 22b). But it is more likely that the reporter of the Halakot in Ket. 22a and B. B. l.c. was a tanna of the same name.