A family name said to have been derived from the name of a city situated in western Germany.
The name is found largely among Polish Jews, who probably were expelled from that city about the middle of the sixteenth century (see Löwenstein, "Gesch. der Juden in der Kurpfalz," p. 33, Frankfort-on-the-Main, 1895) and retained the name in their new homes. The earliest bearer of it of whom there is record is Jacob Baruch ben Judah Landau, author of the ritual work "Agur," who lived in Italy about 1480 or 1490. From the latter part of the sixteenth century the Landau family is met with in Poland, especially in the western part of Podolia, which, after the partition of Poland, was annexed to Austria. In various instances the name "Landau," which had become a Jewish family name, was adopted by people who had no family connection with the original emigrants from the German city. Thus, it was assumed by a great-grandson of Abraham ben Elijah Wilna (see
The first known member of the Landau family in Poland is Ẓebi ben Moses Landau, one of the communal leaders of the Lemberg congregation, who died in Cracow Jan. 7, 1620 (Buber, "Anshe Shem," p. 186). Ẓebi ben Saul Landau was rabbi of Zmigrod and died in Lemberg June 15, 1722. Solomon Landau, father-in-law of Jacob Joshua, lived in Lemberg toward the end of the seventeenth century (ib. pp. 195, 206).
Only the above incomplete pedigree can be drawn of that branch of the family to which Ezekiel Landau belonged, and which had representatives in Zolkiev, Opatow, and Brody.
The first member of this branch definitely mentioned is Judah Landau, who lived about the beginning of the seventeenth century. He and his son, Ezekiel Landau, are known only by name. The latter's son, Ẓebi Hirsch Landau, was a delegate to the Council of Four Lands, and was also one of the signatories to the privilege granted by that body to the printer of Zolkiev in 1699 (Buber, "Ḳiryah Nisgabah," p. 104, Cracow, 1903). One of his sons, Judah Landau, who lived in Opatow, was father of the most famous scion of the family, Ezekiel Landau.
Branches of the family live in Russian Poland and in Brody. Descendants of the same family are: Israel Jonah Landau (d. 1824), rabbi of Kempen, province of Posen, and author of "Me'on ha-Berakot" (Dyhernfurth, 1816), novellæ to the Talmudic treatise Berakot; and his son, Samuel Joseph Landau (d. 1837), also rabbi in Kempen, and author of "Mishkan Shiloh" (Breslau, 1837), novellæ and responsa.
- Buber, Ḳiryah Nisgabah (on the scholars of Zolkiev), Cracow, 1903;
- Eisenstadt-Wiener, Da'at Ḳedoshim, St. Petersburg, 1897-98, passim.
Rabbi of Brody, where he died of cholera in 1831. He was the author of a work entitled "Yad ha-Melek," novellæ on Maimonides' "Yad" and notes to the Talmud (parts i. and iv., Lemberg, 1829; part ii. ib. 1810).
- Eisenstadt-Wiener, Da'at Ḳedoshim, p. 133.
Polish rabbi; born in Opatow Oct. 8, 1713 (see preface to "Noda' bi-Yehudah," 2d collection of his son Jakobḳe); died at Prague April 29, 1793. He received his Talmudical education at Vladimir and Brody. From 1734 to 1745 he acted as first dayyan of Brody; in the latter year he became rabbi of Jampol.
Landau's tactful attitude in the affair of the Eybeschütz amulets won for him general approbation. In a letter addressed to the rabbis who consulted him on the subject he endeavored to persuade them to establish peace between the disputants, and insinuatedthat the amulets might have been falsified, thus opening to the accused rabbi an honorable way of exculpating himself. The letter attracted the attention of the leaders of the community of Prague; in 1755 Landau was called to the rabbinate there; and he continued to hold the position till his death.
Combining vast erudition with great amenity of character, his incumbency proved very beneficial to the community. Respected by the authorities, who recognized the ardent patriotism displayed by him on more than one occasion, he was often consulted on Jewish religious matters. A letter addressed to Landau by the government, asking for his opinion on the question whether an oath pronounced by one holding a discarded scroll of the Law is binding, is inserted in the "Noda' bi-Yehudah" (ii. 65).
While very strict in ritual matters, Landau, for the sake of peace, sometimes sanctioned things which he did not approve. Thus, notwithstanding his previous prohibition, he permitted Löb Honigsberg to continue the construction of a building on semi-holidays, the latter having pleaded urgency (ib. ii. 29). Although a lover of Haskalah, as may be seen from his approbation to the "Yen Lebanon" of Wessely, Landau saw great danger for Judaism in the invasion of German ideas resulting from the German translation of the Bible by Mendelssohn ("Ẓelaḥ" to Ber. 28b).
Though a student of the Cabala and well versed in mystic literature, Landau was a decided adversary of Ḥasidism. He thunders against the recitation of as done by the Ḥasidim, and applies to them the words of Hos. xiv. 10, substituting therein "Ḥasidim" for "Posh'im."
Landau witnessed the siege of Prague in 1757, and when urged to leave the city he decided to cast his lot with the rest of the people. Some years later, in a controversy between the rabbis of Frankfort-on-the-Main and others concerning a form of divorce to be granted to a man from Cleves, Landau took issue against the former; and this so enraged them that in 1769 it was decided that neither Landau nor any of his sons should ever be elected to the rabbinate of Frankfort. In the conflagration of 1773 Landau lost most of his manuscripts. He was thereupon induced to begin the publication of those of his works which the flames had spared, and to add to them his new productions.
Landau's published works are: "Noda' bi-Yehudah" (1776; 2d ed. 1811), responsa; "Derush Hesped," a funeral oration on the death of Maria Theresa (Prague, 1781, in German); "Shebaḥ we-Hoda'ah," a derashah (1790); "Mar'eh Yeḥezḳel," notes to the Talmud, published by his son Samuel Landau in the Talmud edition of 12 vols., 1830; "Ẓiyyun le Nefesh Ḥayyah," novellæ on different Talmudic treatises, viz., Pesaḥim (1784), Berakot (1791), Beẓah (1799), the three republished together in 1824; "Dagul me-Rebabah" (1794), notes on the four ritual codices; "Ahabaṭ Ẓiyyon" (1827), addresses and sermons; "Doresh le-Ẓiyyon" (1827), Talmudic discussion.
Though a Talmudic scholar and a believer in the Cabala, yet Landau was broad-minded and not opposed to secular knowledge. He, however, objected to that culture which came from Berlin. He therefore opposed Mendelssohn's translation of the Pentateuch, and the study of the sciences and of languages advocated by Wessely. Landau was highly esteemed not only by his coreligionists, but also by others; and he stood high in favor in government circles.
- E. Landau, Noda' bi-Yehudah, Prague, 1811;
- Fuenn, Keneset Yisrael, p. 515, Warsaw, 1886;
- Pascheles, Jüdischer Volkskalender, p. 85, Prague, 1884;
- Grätz, Gesch. xi.;
- Rabbinowitz, Dibre Yeme Yisrael, viii., Warsaw, 1899;
- Horovitz, Frankfurter Rabbiner, iii. 99, Frankfort-on-the-Main, 1885;
- Zedner, Cat. Hebr. Books Brit. Mus. p. 422.
Publicist in Prague, where he died about 1890; great-grandson of Ezekiel Landau.Isaac Landau:
Polish rabbi; born at Opatow; died in Cracow 1768. His first rabbinical position was in his native city, whence he journeyed in 1724 to the meeting of the Council of Four Lands, held at Yaroslav. In 1729 he was rabbi of Zolkiev, and in 1734 district rabbi of Lemberg. About 1754 he was elected rabbi of Cracow, where he remained till his death.
Landau is known for the approbations which he gave to several works, among which were "Mafteaḥ ha-'Olamot" by Emanuel Hay Richi, and "Adne Paz" by Meïr b. Levi. He is also known through his correspondence with Jonathan Eybeschütz on his contest with Jacob Emden. According to T. Levenstein, Landau left two sons: Jacob Landau, rabbi of Tarnopol, and Ẓebi Joseph Landau, rabbi of Greidig.
- Buber, Anshe Shem, pp. 119-120.
Russian preacher, exegete, and communal worker; born at Wilna 1801; died there Dec. 6, 1876. At the age of eighteen he settled at Dubno, his wife's native town, where he carried on a prosperous business. On Saturdays and holy days he used to preach in the synagogues, attracting large audiences. Owing to his eloquence Landau was chosen by the communities of Volhynia as member of the rabbinical commission appointed by the emperor in 1861, which necessitated his remaining for five months in St. Petersburg. In 1868 he was called to Wilna as preacher and dayyan, which office he held till his death. At Wilna he established a kasher kitchen for Jewish soldiers.
Landau was a recognized authority in rabbinical matters, and many authors solicited his approbation of their works. He himself was a prolific writer, and was the author of the following commentaries: "Ma'aneh Eliyahu" (Wilna, 1840), on the Tanna debe Eliyahu, accompanied with notes on other subjects under the title "Siaḥ Yiẓḥaḳ"; a double commentary on the Mekilta (ib. 1844): "Berure ha-Middot," on the text, and "Miẓẓui ha-Middot," glossesto the Biblical and Talmudic passages quoted in the commentary; "Patshegen" (ib. 1858), on Proverbs; "Miḳra Soferim" (Suwalki, 1862), on Masseket Soferim; "Dober Shalom" (Warsaw, 1863), on the daily prayers; "Kiflayimle-Tushiyyah," on the twelve Minor Prophets (only that on Joel published, Jitomir, 1865) and on Psalms (Warsaw, 1866); "Patshegen ha-Dat," on the Five Scrolls (Wilna, 1870) and on the Pentateuch (ib. 1872-75); "Aḥarit le-Shalom" (ib. 1871), on the Pesaḥ Haggadah; "Derek Ḥayyim" (ib. 1872), on Derek Ereẓ Zuṭa; "Lishmoa' ka-Limmudim" (ib. 1876), on the haggadah of the Talmudists; and "Simlah Ḥadashah," on the Maḥzor (published in the Wilna editions of the Maḥzor).
Landau published also "Derushim le-Kol Ḥefẓehem" (ib. 1871-77), a collection of sermons; and two of his funeral orations: "Ḳol Shaon" (Wilna, 1872; also translated into Russian), on the wife of Prince Potapov; and "Ebel Kabed" (Eydtkuhnen, 1873), on Samuel Straschun. He left besides a number of works still unpublished.
- Fuenn, Keneset Yisrael, p. 632;
- H. N. Steinschneider, 'Ir Wilna, pp. 92-97.
Born at Zbaras, Galicia, 1851; grandson of a brother of Abraham Isaac Landau; chief editor of the "Berliner Börsenkourier."Israel ben Ezekiel Landau:
Scholar of the end of the eighteenth century; son of Ezekiel ben Judah Landau. He was the author of "Ḥoḳ le-Yisrael" (Prague, 1798), a compendium of Maimonides' "Sefer ha-Miẓwot," with an abridgment of Naḥmanides' notes, in Judæo-German, to which he did not affix his name because of his modesty.
- Benjacob, Oẓar ha-Sefarim, p. 199.
German-Italian codifier; lived in the second half of the fifteenth century. His father was one of the chief authorities on the Talmud in Germany; hundreds of Talmudists, among them naturally his son, were his pupils.
Landau left Germany and settled in Italy, living first in Pavia (1480) and then in Naples (1487). In the latter city he published, some time between 1487 and 1492, his code "Agur," which he composed for his pupil Ezra Abraham b. David Obadiah, because, the latter's time being devoted to physics and metaphysics, he could not enter deeply into the study of the Talmud (see introduction to "Agur"). This practical consideration determined the form of the "Agur," which contains only those rules that a layman should know, and comprises principally an abridged presentation of the material treated in the first and second parts of the Ṭurim. The author of the Ṭurim, Jacob b. Asher, is Landau's chief authority; and the "Agur" may be considered really as a supplement to that work. In the "Agur" Landau gives excerpts from the halakic literature which appeared after the time of Jacob b. Asher.
Although the "Agur" possesses little originality, it held an important position among law codes, and is often quoted, especially by Joseph Caro in the Shulḥan 'Aruk. German influence on the religious practises of the Italians was increased by Landau's work, such authorities as Jacob Mölin, Isserlein, and other Germans having been little noticed by Italians before him. At the end of the "Agur" Landau gave a number of conundrums relating to the Halakah, under the title "Sefer Ḥazon," which were afterward published separately (Venice, 1546; Prague, 1608). The "Agur" was the first Jewish work to contain a rabbinical approbation, besides being the second Hebrew book printed during the author's lifetime (see
- Fuenn, Keneset Yisrael, pp. 550-551;
- Steinschneider, Cat. Bodl. col. 1225.
Austrian literary historian; born at Brody, Galicia, Nov. 21, 1837. After completing his education he entered upon a mercantile career (1852-69 at Brody; from 1869 at Vienna), but abandoned it in 1878 for a life of letters. He made repeated visits to Italy. He became a correspondent for and contributor to the "Allgemeine Zeitung" of Munich, the "Presse," the "Frankfurter Zeitung," and the "Zeitschrift für Vergleichende Literaturgeschichte." In 1871 he obtained the Ph.D. degree from the University of Giessen. He is the author of the following works: "Die Quellen des Dekameron," Vienna, 1869, 2d ed. 1884; "Beiträge zur Geschichte der Italienischen Novelle," Vienna, 1875; "Giovanni Bocaccio, Sein Leben und Seine Werke," Stuttgart, 1877 (Italian translation by Camillo Antonio Traversi, 1881); "Die Italienische Literatur am Oesterreichischen Hofe," Vienna, 1879 (Italian translation by Mrs. Gustava von Stein-Rebecchini, 1880); "Rom, Wien, Neapel Während des Spanischen Erbfolgekrieges, ein Beitrag zur Geschichte des Kampfes Zwischen Papstthum und Kaisertum," Leipsic, 1885; "Geschichte Kaiser Karl's VI., als König von Spanien," Stuttgart, 1889; "Skizzen aus der Jüdischen Geschichte," 1897; "Geschichte der Italienischen Literatur im Achtzehnten Jahrhundert, "Berlin, 1899. He wrote also over 700 essays, memoirs, and feuilleton articles in German and Italian for newspapers and literary periodicals.
- Litterarisches Centralblatt, 1899, pp. 1532-1533;
- Bulletin du Musée Belge, ii.;
- Eisenberg, Das Geistige Wien.
Austrian printer, publisher, and lexicographer; born Dec. 28, 1788, at Prague; died there May 4, 1852; grandson of Ezekiel Landau. After finishing his studies at a yeshibah of his native town he established a Hebrew and Oriental printing-press in Prague, which became important in the annals of Hebrew typography.
In 1819 he was elected superintendent of the Jewish school in Prague, and shortly afterward was made one of the board of directors of the Jewish community. He was elected alderman ("Stadtverordneter") in 1849, and a member of the city council ("Stadtrath") in 1850.
Landau began his literary career by publishing a volume of poems entitled "Amaranten" in 1820. He followed this up in 1824 with his almanac for the friends of Hebrew literature, entitled "Bikkure ha-'Ittim." As a preparation for his Aramaic-Talmudic dictionary Landau published his book on the "Geist und Sprache der Hebräer nach dem Zweiten Tempelbau," Prague, 1822 (part i., history of language;part ii., chrestomathy from the Talmud, Zohar, and Midrashim). In 1819 he had begun a new edition of the "'Aruk" of R. Nathan of Rome, to which he added Benjamin Mussafia's "Mussaf he-'Aruk." His "Rabbinisch-Aramäisches Wörterbuch zum Verständnis des Talmuds, der Targumim und Midraschim" (Prague, 1819-24; 2d ed. ib. 1834-35) contains valuable observations and numerous treatises of philosophical, historical, archeological, and geographical character.
Landau's collection of all the foreign words () found in Rashi (on the Bible and Talmud), in the Tosafot, in Maimonides, and in Rosh, is of lasting value. The work, entitled "Marpe Lashon," was published first in his edition of the Mishnah (Prague, 1829-31), then in the editions of the Talmud (ib. 1829-31 and 1839-45) and in his edition of the Bible (ib. 1833-37). It has also appeared separately (Odessa, 1865), with notes by Dormitzer.
Landau's chief merit as a typographer is due to the fact that he always personally supervised the correction of the works published in his establishment, so that they issued from the press with scarcely a fault.
In his will Landau left his Hebrew library to the orphan asylum established by him, and his other Oriental works to a Jewish theological seminary to be founded in the future.
- Allg. Zeit. des Jud. 1852, p. 269.
Chief dayyan of Prague, where he died Oct. 31, 1834, at an advanced age. Landau was the champion of Orthodox Rabbinism, and when, at the end of the eighteenth century, the Austrian emperor planned the establishment of Jewish theological seminaries, Landau was one of the rabbis that objected thereto. He had a controversy on this subject with Baruch Jeiteles (Phinehas Hananiah Argosi di Silva), who, under the title of "Ha-Oreb," published (Vienna, 1795) Landau's letter to him and his own rejoinder. Landau published his responsa under the title of "Shibat Ẓiyyon" (Prague, 1827). He edited his father's "Ahabat Ẓiyyon" and "Doresh le-Ẓiyyon." (ib. 1827), adding to the former work four homilies of his own, and to the latter a number of halakic discourses.
- Eisenstadt-Wiener, Da'at Ḳedoshim, p. 127;
- Fürst, Bibl. Jud. ii. 219;
- Steinschneider, Cat. Bodl. col. 2433.