(Redirected from KALMANKES.)
Table of Contents

Family of rabbis, scholars, and communal workers, with members in Germany, Austria, Russia, Great Britain, Italy, and the United States. It traces its descent from Mordecai Jaffe (1530-1612), author of the "Lebushim," and his uncle Moses Jaffe, both descendants of an old family of Prague. According to Joseph Lewinstein, rabbi at Serock, government of Warsaw, the progenitor of the Jaffes was Samuel ben Elhanan, a grandson of Isaac ha-Zaḳen (died at the end of the twelfth century), whose father was Samuel, the son-in-law of Rabbi Meïr of Ramerupt, the father of Jacob Tam, grandson of Rashi. Lewinstein's conclusions, however, have not yet been substantiated.

Jaffe Pedigree I.Jaffe Pedigree II.

From Abraham, the father of Mordecai ("Lebushim"), came the Jaffe branch proper, while another Mordecai, the son of Moses Jaffe, settled in Cracow, where he married the daughter of Joel Singer and assumed the name of his father-in-law, in accordance with the custom current among the Jews of Poland. His descendants, often called Ḳalmanḳes, were sometimes confounded with the descendants of the author of the "Lebushim," and it is difficult to ascertain to which of the two houses some of the later Jaffes belong. Again, many Jaffes have taken the names of Itzig, Meier, Margolies, Schlesinger, Rosenthal, Wallerstein, etc., while many distant relatives, really of other houses, have preferred to take the popular name of Jaffe. In the tables given below these questions have been elucidated in so far as documentary or authoritative private evidence has permitted. Isaac and Eliezer, two other brothers of Abraham ben Joseph (father of the author of the "Lebushim"), settled in Italy, and there became the progenitors of the Italian branch of the Jaffes. Three daughters of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim") married the sons of three of the most prominent Jewish families of that time (see Table II.), and in this way the Jaffe family became related to the Wahls, Epsteins, and Günzburgs. The daughter of Moses Jaffe was the wife of Samuel Sirkes. Later the Jaffes united with the families of Katzenellenbogen, Schorr, Heilprin, Bacharach, Deiches, Rosenthal, Minz, etc. The following is a partial enumeration of the members of both branches of the family, the descendants of Moses Jaffe being indicated by K (= ḳalmanḳes):

Aaron Jaffe (K):

Son of Israel (Saba) of Shklov and father of Israel Jaffe Zuṭa; lived in the middle of the seventeenth century.

Aaron Jaffe (K) of Uman:

Father of Israel Jaffe (Saba) of Shklov; born 1568 at Prague; died at Glusk 1651. He was rabbi at Uman, and escaped during the Cossack uprising (1648) to Glusk.

Abraham Abba ben Israel Jaffe:

Rabbi at Ponewiezh; author of "Sefatayim" on the Talmud, and "Bet Yisrael," responsa (in manuscript at Jerusalem). His mother was the daughter of David Solomon, rabbi at Lissa, and his sons were Shabbethai Weksner, Jedidiah of Bausk, and Isaac (went to Jerusalem). The son of Shabbethai was Joseph of Weksna.

Abraham Aberl b. Perez:

Grandson of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim"); died at Nikolsburg, Moravia, 1657. Misled by Warnheim ("Ḳebuẓat Ḥakamim," p. 117), N. Brüll declared Abraham Aberl to have been the son of Mordecai and the successor of R. Pethahiah as chief rabbi of Moravia. Friedländer and others followed him in that error. Aberl's tombstone, however, was badly decayed, and the words (= "R. Perez") were ascertained with great difficulty (Feuchtwang, in "Gedenkbuch zur Erinnerung an David Kaufmann," Breslau, 1900).

Abraham b. Aryeh Löb Ḳalmanḳes:

Author of "Ma'yan ha-Ḥokmah," an introduction to the Cabala (Amsterdam, 1652). Fuenn ("Keneset Yisrael," p. 59) confounded him with Asher Jacob Abraham (see Joseph Kohen-Ẓedeḳ in "Ha-Asam").

Jaffe Pedigree III.Abraham of Bohemia (see Jew. Encyc. i. 100):

According to Joseph Lewinstein, the great-grandfather of Abraham b. Joseph.

Abraham b. Elijah Ḳalmanḳes:

Dayyan at Cracow; son of Elijah b. Abraham Ḳalmanḳes, rabbi at Lemberg. He was the son-in-law of Zalman b. Jacob Walsh, and his signature appears in the "pinḳes" of Lemberg of 1650 in two cases (Dembitzer, "Kelilat Yofi," p. 39b, note 2). He died 1652.

Abraham b. Joseph:

Father of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim"); a merchant and a rabbinical scholar; pupil of Abraham ben Abigdor; died 1564 ("Lebush ha-Or," p. 294).

Abraham b. Kalonymus of Lublin (K):

Author of "Adderet Eliyahu" (commentaries and notes on the Pentateuch; Frankfort-on-the-Oder, 1694). He was a second cousin of Asher Jacob Abraham b. Aryeh Löb (the author of "Ha-Eshel"). He had a son named Kalonymus.

Abraham b. Kalonymus b. Mordecai (K):

Brother of the first Hebrew printers in Lublin. He had two sons, Hirsch and Jacob.

Anselm Benjamin Jaffe:

Died at Berlin 1812. His wife was Reicke, daughter of Aaron b. Isaac Saul of Frankfort-on-the-Oder, who published (1746), in conjunction with his brother-in-law Judah Be'er, the great-grandfather of Giacomo Meyerbeer, a Pentateuch with commentaries. Anselm's son was Saul Ascher of Berlin.

Aryeh Löb b. Joseph b. Abraham Ḳal-manḳes:

Father of Asher Jacob Abraham.

Aryeh Löb b. Mordecai:

Son of the author of the "Lebushim"; mentioned in preface to "Yam shel Shelomoh, Giṭṭin" (Berlin, 1761).

Asher Jacob Abraham b. Aryeh Löb Ḳalmanḳes:

Author of "Ha-Eshel," sermons (Lublin, 1674), and "Birkat Abraham," on Talmudic law.Until the age of ten he studied Talmud with his grandfather Joseph. During the Cossack uprising (1648) he fled to Egypt, and from there went to Jerusalem. In 1671 he returned to Lublin, where he became rabbi. He died at Lemberg 1681.

Benjamin Wolf b. Judah Ḳalmanḳes:

Died at Lemberg 1709. He left in manuscript (preserved at Oxford) a work entitled "Hanhagat ha-Bayit," on religious ethics, with a commentary; it is published in "Maẓẓebet Ḳodesh" (see "Maẓẓebet Ḳodesh," i. 62; Fuenn, "Keneset Yisrael," p. 173).

Daniel Jaffe. See Itzig, Daniel.David Friedländer:

Son-in-law of Daniel Itzig-Jaffe.

David Jaffe:

Father of Aryeh Löb Wallerstein of Holschitz.

David b. Ẓebi Hirsch Saba:

Rabbi at the Klaus-Synagoge, Prague.


Daughter of Phinehas Jaffe of Kalvariya; wife of Tobiah of Kalvariya, a pupil of Elijah of Wilna; lived in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

Eleazar Jaffe:

His signature is found in the pinḳes of Berlin of 1743 (Landshuth, "'Ammude ha-'Abodah," p. 37).

Eliasberg, Mordecai b. Joseph (1817-89), and his son Jonathan (1850-98).

See Jew. Encyc. v. 111.

Eliezer Jaffe:

Son of Abraham of Bohemia; lived in the sixteenth century.

Eliezer (Lazar) Jaffe:

Physician; lived in the middle of the nineteenth century ("Ha-Maggid," 1861, No. 39, p. 255).

Eliezer b. Alexander Kleinberg (Bausker):

Rabbi at Wilna; went to America and became rabbi at Chicago, Ill.; died in New York city 1891.

Eliezer (Lazar) b. Jacob Riesser-Katzenellenbogen:

Father of Gabriel Riesser; son-in-law of Raphael ha-Kohen, rabbi of Hamburg. He was the author of "Zeker Ẓaddiḳ," with a supplement, "Ma'alele Ish," containing sermons and a biography of Raphael ha-Kohen (Altona, 1805). He also wrote, in German, "Sendschreiben an Meine Genossen in Hamburg, oder eine Abhandlung über den Israelitischen Kultus" (Altona, 1815). His "Ma'alele Ish" (p. 11b) traces the descent of his father-in-law from Mordecai Jaffe.

Eliezer of Mantua:

Son of Joseph of Prague and uncle of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim").

Eliezer (Lazar) b. Shalom Rosenthal:

Born at Brody 1768; died at Bausk, Courland, 1840 (see Rosenthal, Eliezer).

Elijah b. Abraham Ḳalmanḳes:

Rabbi at Lublin, and later at Lemberg and Opatow; died at the latter place in 1636 ("Kelilat Yofi," pp. 26, 38b).

Elijah b. Kalonymus:

Author of "Adderet Eliyahu" (see Jew. Encyc. v. 131). According to Joseph Cohen-Ẓedeḳ (Rabinowitz, "Ha-Meassef," p. 134, St. Petersburg, 1902), he was the brother-in-law of Solomon Zalman Ḳalmanḳes. He had a son named Kalonymus.

Elijah b. Shalom:

Rabbi at Neustadt-Shervint (Wladislawow); born between 1750 and 1775; died about the middle of the nineteenth century; a brother of Eliezer (Lazar) Rosenthal (see Rosenthal, Eliezer.

Enoch Zundel:

Rabbi at Olinka; son of Mordecai b. Joseph of Plungian; lived in the eighteenth century.

Enoch Zundel:

Rabbi of Pultusk; son of Jacob of Lidvinovi; died on the 11th of Adar (Sheni), 1891.

Enoch Zundel Jaffe (called also Zundel Ḥalfon):

Grammarian and authority on the Masorah; son of Moses b. Mordecai b. Joseph Jaffe; lived in the eighteenth century.

Ephraim b. Aaron of Prague (K):

Brother of Israel of Shklov (author of "Or Yisrael"); born about 1638, his father then being at the age of seventy (Walden, "Shem ha-Gedolim he-Ḥadash," p. 26).

Epstein, Aryeh Löb (K):

Relative of Israel b. Aaron Jaffe (Saba) of Shklov (17th cent.; see Fuenn, "Keneset Yisrael," p. 694; Eliezer Kohn, "Ḳin'at Soferim," p. 61b).

Epstein, Jehiel Michael ha-Levi:

Physician; died in 1632; son of Abraham Epstein, rabbi of Brest-Litovsk (d. 1617). He married Bella, the daughter of Mordecai Jaffe. His son-in-law was Abraham b. Joseph Heilprin, rabbi at Kauth, a descendant of Elhanan b. Isaac, the tosafist. Rabbi Joseph Lewinstein of Serock is a descendant of this family.

Frank Jaffe:

Lived in London; translated A. Mapas' "Aḥabat Ẓiyyon" into English under the title "Amnon, Prince and Peasant" (London, 1887). His father was Abraham Jaffe, of London; his grandfather, Mordecai Jaffe, of Memel, Prussia. Moses Jaffe, a lawyer of New York city, is a nephew of Abraham.


Wife of Ḥayyim Jaffe; died at Prague in 1635, at the age of seventy-three (Hock, "Die Familien Prag's," p. 172).

Ginzberg, Louis (see Jew. Encyc. v. 671):

Related to the Jaffes on his mother's side.

Ḥayyim b. Kalonymus b. Mordecai (K):

Printer at Lublin.

Hirsch b. Abraham (b. Kalonymus b. Mordecai: K):

Bought the printing establishment of his grandfather Kalonymus (1606).

Hirsch b. Benzion Shlez:

Grandson of Shabbethai Jaffe of Weksna; author of "Te'ome Ẓebiyyah," on the Halakah, and of "Siḥat Ḥullin," sayings of rabbinical scholars (2d ed., Warsaw, 1889).

Isaac b. Joseph Jaffe-Ashkenazi:

Studied in Padua under Judah b. Eliezer Minz, and settled in Italy, where he married into a Sephardic family. His sons were Samuel and Moses.

Isaac Ḳalmanḳes of Lublin:

Teacher of Moses ha-Kohen of Metz (formerly of Narol); author of "Birkat Ṭob"; lived in the seventeenth century. His son was Meïr, and his grandson Mordecai (author of "Tabnit ha-Bayit").

Isaac b. Simon of Warka. Israel (K):

Rabbi at Kopys, government of Moghilef; had a Hebrew printing establishment at Kopys, and published an edition of the Talmud (1816-28).

H. R.Israel ben Aaron Jaffe (Saba):

Russian rabbi; born at Uman about 1640; died at Frankfort-on-the-Oder after 1702. From childhood he was brought up in the atmosphere of the Talmud. On attainingmaturity he became rabbi at Shklov, where he remained till 1702. He then went to Frankfort-on-the-Oder to publish his "Or Yisrael" (1702), which aroused considerable animosity because it was alleged to countenance the followers of Shabbethai Ẓebi.

Jaffe, who in his youth had witnessed the sufferings of his coreligionists at the hands of Chmielnicki and his associates (1648), devoted himself assiduously to the study of the Cabala in order to find out the reason for the prolongation of the Exile ("Galut"), and why God had permitted the outrages of 1648. He rebuked the Rabbis, who declared that their work was the real work of God. Especially did he rebuke them for their lack of interest in the study of the Cabala; and it was on this account that he composed the "Or Yisrael." Besides this work he wrote "Tif'eret Yisrael," called also "Milḥamot Adonai," appended to which are "Kishshut Ṭob" and "Sefer Yisrael Zuṭa," homiletical expositions of the Law. It was published by his grandson Israel Jaffe (Zuṭa), Frankfort-on-the-Oder, 1774.

  • Fuenn, Keneset Yisrael, p. 694, Warsaw, 1886.
H. R. B. Fr.Israel b. Aaron Jaffe (Zuṭa: K):

Grandson of Israel b. Aaron Jaffe (Saba); lived in the eighteenth century. At the age of twenty-five he published an extract of his grandfather's "Tif'eret Yisrael" ("Ha-Shaḥar," vi. 929).

Israel David b. Mordecai Margolies-Schlesinger-Jaffe (called also David Sered):

Rabbi at Bösing, Hungary; descendant of Mordecai Jaffe, and, on his mother's side, of Liva b. Bezaleel of Prague; author of "Meḥolat ha-Maḥanayim," responsa (Presburg, 1859); "Har Tabor," responsa, with a supplement in German directed against Dr. W. A. Meisel, chief rabbi of Budapest (Presburg, 1861); and "Ḥazon la-Mo'ed," on the calendar.

Israel b. Jedidiah (K):

Cantor at Suwalki and in New York city; author of "Ishshe Yisrael," commentary to Moses Isserles' "Torat ha-'Olah" (Königsberg, 1854-57); died in New York city 1888; descendant of Israel b. Aaron of Shklov (as is evident from the preface to "Torat ha-'Olah") and not of Jedidiah b. Abba of Bausk (as given by N. Sokolov in "Sefer Zikkaron").

Israel Landau:

Lived at Sadagora; descendant of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim").

Israel b. Zalkind b. Isaac Jaffe:

Lived at Zhagory; father-in-law of Dob Bär Rabbiner, the father of Benash Zalkind Rabbiner of New York; Israel's brother Simon was the grandfather of Ḥayyim Sack of Zhagory.

Israel b. Ẓebi Hirsch Jaffe (called also Israel Weksler):

Prominent merchant at Bausk, Courland; born in 1800; died in 1870; son-in-law of Eliezer (Lazar) Rosenthal. His son Solomon Wolf removed to New York city.


Son of Israel Jaffe of Shklov; rabbi at St. Petersburg, where he died April 22, 1820 ("Voskhod," Feb., 1881, p. 41).


Rabbi at Ludvinovi; author of "Gufe Halakot" (1822); son of Phinehas of Kalvariya and of Naomi, daughter of Samuel of Karlin and Antipoli.

Jacob b. Abraham b. Kalonymus b. Mordecai (called also Jacob Ḳalmanḳes):

Lived in the seventeenth century. In 1662 he reestablished the Hebrew printing-press at Lublin, which had been closed in 1648 on account of the Cossack uprising, and employed his two sons, Joseph and Kalonymus (Ḳalman), as assistants.

Jacob of Krink:

Son of Enoch Zundel Ḥalfon; died at Krink 1780; left various works in manuscript (see "Da'at Ḳedoshim," p. 36).

Jedidiah b. Abraham Abe Jaffe:

Educator; lived at Bausk; died about 1862; brother of Shabbethai Jaffe (Weksner); grandfather of S. Schaffer of Baltimore, Md. (through his daughter Taube).

Joel ben Samuel Jaffe. See Sirkes, Joel.Joseph:

Grandfather of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim"); lived in the fifteenth century.

Joseph b. Abraham Ḳalmanḳes (K):

Rabbinical scholar; rabbi at various places in Poland and Bohemia; died at Prague 1637 ("Gal Ed," No. 82).

Joseph b. Kalonymus b. Mordecai (K):

Printer at Lublin in the seventeenth century.

Joseph b. Mordecai b. Joseph of Plungian:

President of the Lithuanian council; his signature is attached to documents emanating from the council of Krozhe (1779).

H. R.Joseph b. Moses Jaffe:

Russian rabbi; born in Vilkomir, government of Wilna, 1846; died in Manchester, England, June 30, 1897. In 1874 he became rabbi of Pokroi, government of Wilna, where he remained nine years. In 1883 he became rabbi of Salaty, government of Kovno, and in 1886 he succeeded his father as rabbi of Garsdi, in the same government. In 1893 he went to England as rabbi of the Russian-Polish congregation at Manchester, and retained the position until his death. He was the author of "Yosef Bi'ur" (Wilna, 1881), on Canticles, and of an ethical work in verse, entitled "Ha-Sekel we ha-Yeẓer." He wrote also responsa and sermons, which are still in manuscript.

  • Eisenstadt, Dor Rabbanaw we-Soferaw, i. 32, Wilna;
  • Aḥiasaf, 5659, pp. 342-343.
H. R. P. Wi.Joseph Silverstrom:

Son of Jacob of Krink; son-in-law of Arush Mintz of Meseritz (Mezhirechye).

Judah Löb b. Asher Selig Margolioth:

Rabbi at Suchostav, Kapitschintze, Buzhanov, Lesla, Plotzk, and Frankfort-on-the-Oder (where he died 1811). He was a descendant of Mordecai Jaffe and of Moses Mat, author of "Maṭṭeh Mosheh" (see "Ḳorban Reshit," Frankfort-on-the-Oder, 1778). His sons were Asher Selig Margolioth (rabbi at Pruzhany) and Ephraim (Joseph Cohen-Ẓedeḳ, "Shem u-She'erit," p. 72).

Judah Löb Jaffe of Halberstadt:

Member of the Jewish community at Berlin about the middle of the eighteenth century (see Landshuth, "'Ammude ha-'Abodah," pp. 28, 37, 40).

Judah Löb Ḳalmanḳes:

District rabbi of Eidlitz in the seventeenth century; son of Ẓebi Hirsch Ḳalmanḳes, dayyan of Cracow.

Judah Löb b. Shabbethai Jaffe:

Rabbi at Chernigov; his signature is attached to taḳḳanot of 1818.

Ḳalman b. Joseph b. Kalonymus:

Died at Jerusalem in 1598 (13th of Shebaṭ). His brothers were Jehiel and Moses, the father of Kalonymus.

H. R.Kalonymus ben Mordecai Jaffe:

Polish printer; died at Lublin 1603. About 1556 he founded a Hebrew printing-press at Lublin, and published as his first work the Pentateuch, which was followed in 1559 by an edition of the Talmud. In 1592 Kalonymus ben Mordecai left Lublin, on account of an outbreak of cholera, and settled in Bistrowitz, where, in that year, he published Isaac Abravanel's "Zebaḥ Pesaḥ." He later returned to Lublin, and continued in business there until his death.

  • Steinschneider, Cat. Bodl. col. 2918;
  • B. Friedberg, Gesch. der Hebräischen Typographie in Lublin, p. 3.
J. B. Fr.Kalonymus b. Moses Jaffe:

Died at Prague in 1656.

Kim Ḳaddish:

Dayyan of Krotoschin; author of "Sefer Ma'amar Ḳaddishin 'al Ḥoshen Mishpaṭ" (Prague, 1766); son of Kim Ḳaddish Jaffe of Pila and father-in-law of Naḥman b. Alexander of Pila.


Wife of Ozer Jaffe; died at Prague 1618 (Hock, "Die Familien Prag's," p. 172).

Lewinstein, Joseph:

Rabbi at Serock, government of Warsaw, Poland; descendant of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim"). See Lewinstein, Joseph.

Maskileison, Naphtali. See Maskileison.H. R.Max Jaffé:

German pharmacologist; born at Grünberg, Silesia, July 25, 1841. He studied medicine at the University of Berlin (M.D. 1862), and was from 1865 to 1872 assistant at the university hospital at Königsberg, where he became privat-docent (1867) and assistant professor (1872) of medical chemistry; in 1873 he was elected professor of pharmacology by the university. In 1880 he was appointed member of the German sanitary commission ("Gesundheitsamt") and received the title of "Geheime Medizinalrat." Among his writings may be mentioned: "Ueber den Niederschlag Welchen Pikrinsäure im Normalen Harn Erzeugt," 1886; "Vorkommen des Urethan im Alkoholischen Extrakt des Normalen Harns," 1890; "Zur Kenntniss der Durch Phenylhydrazin Fällbaren Harnbestandtheile," 1897; "Ueber das Verhältniss des Furfurols im Thierischen Organismus," 1900.

  • Hirsch, Biographisches Lexikon.
S. F. T. H.Mordecai Hirsch:

Rabbi at Kalvariya; son of Jacob of Lidvinovi.

Mordecai Jaffe:

Codifier of rabbinical law; born in Prague about 1530; died at Posen March 7, 1612. His father, Abraham b. Joseph, was a pupil of Abraham ben Abigdor. Moses Isserles and Solomon Luria were Mordecai Jaffe's teachers in rabbinics, while Mattithiah b. Solomon Delacrut was his teacher in Cabala. Jaffe studied also philosophy, astronomy, and mathematics. He was head of a yeshibah in Prague until 1561, when, by order of the emperor Ferdinand, the Jews were expelled from Bohemia. Jaffe then went to Venice and studied astronomy (1561-71). In 1572 he was elected rabbi of Grodno; in 1588, rabbi of Lublin, where he became one of the leaders of the Council of Four Lands. Later Jaffe accepted the rabbinate of Kremenetz. In 1592 he was called as rabbi to Prague; from 1599 until his death he occupied the position of chief rabbi of Posen.

The "Lebush."

The "Lebush" is the achievement with which Jaffe's name is principally associated, and he is best known as the "ba'al ha-Lebushim" ("the author of the 'Lebushim'"). It is a rabbinical code, arranged in the order adopted in the Ṭurim and the Shulḥan 'Aruk, and divided into five parts. The titles of the work and its various parts were derived by Mordecai, with allusion to his own name, from Esther viii. 15. The reason advanced by Jaffe for the compilation of the work was his desire to give a digest of the latest decisions and minhagim, mainly those of German and Polish authorities and including those of his teachers, in order to shorten the course in his yeshibah (introduction). The appearance of Joseph Caro's "Bet Yosef" appended to the Ṭurim was hailed with joy as a great event in rabbinical circles. Even Jaffe thought, at the time, that this work was final. The "Bet Yosef," however, was too scientific and voluminous for the general use of an ordinary rabbi. Jaffe was on the point of publishing his work, when Caro anticipated him with the Shulḥan 'Aruk, to which Isserles later added annotations and the minhagim prevailing in Germany, Poland, and Russia. The two extremes presented by the copiousness of the "Bet Yosef" and the brevity of the Shulḥan 'Aruk left many dissatisfied, and Jaffe accordingly continued his work on his own lines, avoiding both the exuberant, argumentative style and the too terse and legal manner of Caro. Another advantage possessed by the "Lebush" was that it included parts of the Ṭurim omitted by Caro, and the latest minhagim collected by Isaac Tyrnau. The "Lebush," while its author was alive, enjoyed great popularity; but after his death Caro's code gradually superseded it, not only in the Orient but also in Europe, for the reason that the rabbis were obliged to consult the "Bet Yosef" for the sources, while the layman was content with the shorter Shulḥan 'Aruk.

His Method.

Nevertheless, for scholars who study the spirit of the Law, the "Lebushim" are a valuable contribution to halakic literature. As Jaffe rightly observes, the Shulḥan 'Aruk is "a table well prepared with all kinds of refreshments, but it lacks the salt of reasoning." Jaffe seasoned his work with the "salt of reasoning" by giving logical explanations at the beginning of almost every section.

In treating ritual-legal matters from a cabalistic standpoint, Jaffe is an exception among the codifiers. Even Caro, in Safed, the seat of Cabala, refrained from infusing Cabala into his code. Jaffe's method was to a certain extent an innovation, and tended to draw together the Talmudists and cabalists, otherwise in danger of an open breach.

In his "Lebush Tekelet," § 36, Jaffe treats the form of the script alphabet cabalistically. In addition to the "holy and true science" of Cabala, Jaffe was well versed in the secular sciences of his time. In § 94, by means of a map, he indicated the site of Jerusalem, and directed the worshipers of his own country to face the Temple, to the east, "a degree southward." In §§ 427-428 (written in 1579) he gives a minute, scientific explanation of the calendar, with tables and illustrations. That he wasfamiliar with the Russian language is evident from his "Lebush Buẓ we-Argaman," § 129.

His "Lebush Ḥur," corresponding to Oraḥ Ḥayyim, part ii., begins with § 242, on "Sabbath rules." Jaffe quotes the Talmud freely and explains, "Whoever strictly observes the Sabbath, his worship of idols is forgiven," as follows: Sabbath is based on the belief in the creation of the world by the Almighty, in the deliverance from Egypt, and in the revelation of the Torah on Sinai. Therefore it is to be presumed that in one who strictly observes the Sabbath the worship of idols is merely a formality, an involuntary act due entirely to the pressure of circumstances. Perhaps Jaffe intended this for the Maranos.

Page from the First Edition of Mordecai Jaffe's "Lebushim," Lublin, 1590.(From the Sulzberger collection in the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, New York.)

In his "Lebush 'Aṭeret," corresponding to YorehDe'ah, Jaffe follows the restrictions of his teacher Isserles, as opposed to Caro, his reason for doing so being "the lack of knowledge of physical science in our time." In a case in which the upper jaw of an animal has been removed (by accident or design), Caro is inclined to pronounce it kasher, but is reluctant to do so because Maimonides decided otherwise (§ 33). Jaffe, however, says that authoritative physicians concur in the rabbinical opinion that the absence of the upper jaw is certain to result in the death of the animal from tuberculosis, and that therefore it can not be slaughtered as kasher meat (ib.).

Liberal Interpretation.

Regarding wine of Gentiles, Jaffe, like Isserles, is somewhat lax. Caro prohibits "honey wine" (mead) made by a Mohammedan; Jaffe permits it (§§ 123-126). The principal reason for the existing prohibition is that wine is intoxicating and promotes companionship, causing an intimacy that is apt to lead to intermarriage between Jews and Gentiles. But at the present time, when business with the Gentile is generally opened with an introductory libation, it would be impossible to expand or enforce the rule. Besides, Jews are now socially too much separated from the Gentile to fear assimilation. Hence there is no necessity to expand the prohibition to include any other intoxicating beverage than wine, which was the original Gezerah; and this can not be permitted in the absence of an authoritative synod (ib.).

In regard to loans and interest, Jaffe considered a Karaite as an Israelite, and significantly said that "the Karaites are in a measure under duress, being wrongly brought up from infancy to discard the rabbinical traditions" (§ 159). He was very strict against usury, and would not allow any pretext or evasion, as the evil is contagious; "permit an opening of the size of a pinhole, and it will enlarge from day to day until it becomes as wide as the entrance of the Temple corridor" (§ 160). In the next paragraph he attacks an alleged ruling by Rashi to the effect that the prohibition against interest can be avoided by an intermediary between debtor and creditor. Caro, in "Bet Yosef," does not hesitate to say that an unscrupulous scribe inserted the ruling, and "hung himself on a tall tree" (that is, a recognized authority) by attributing it to Rashi. Jaffe is of the same opinion, and criticizes his teacher, Isserles, for adding this ruling to the Shulḥan 'Aruk; he can not comprehend how his "holy mouth" could have uttered such a thing, as there is not the slightest excuse or basis for the subterfuge, which makes the prohibition of usury a mockery and a laughing-stock in the eyes of the common people. He goes on to threaten: "If I ever get into power I will order the obliteration of that paragraph from the books" (ib.).

The "Lebush Buẓ we-Argaman," corresponding to Eben ha-'Ezer, contains rules, regulations, and forms for the writ of divorce. In connection with this appears an interesting alphabetical list of names, male and female, with their spellings, appended to § 129.

The "Lebush 'Ir Shushan," corresponding to Ḥoshen Mishpaṭ, is devoted to civil laws. Speaking, in the first section, of judges and judgment, he says: "Judgment is one of the fundamental principles of creation; as the Mishnah says, 'The triple basis of the world is truth, judgment, and peace'" (Abot i. 18). The maxim "The law of the government is law" is fully treated in § 369, and defined democratically by the statement that "only that government is legitimate in which the king's seal of authority is voluntarily acknowledged by his subjects; otherwise he is not their king, but a robber gathering imposts by force, whose edicts have no legal value."

Jaffe's other works are: "Lebush Orah," a commentary on Rashi to the Pentateuch (Prague, 1603); "Lebush Simḥah," sermons (in manuscript); and "Lebush Or Yeḳarot," consisting of three independent treatises: (1) "Lebush Yeḳarah," on Recanati; (2) "Lebush Eder ha-Yeḳar," on the Jewish calendar, following Maimonides; (3) "Lebush Pinnat Yeḳarot," on Maimonides' "Moreh" (Lublin, 1594). He also annotated the Talmud, and his notes were first published at Vienna in 1830.

Jaffe's opinion was sought on many questions of law, and his responsa were highly valued.

Authority at Lublin Fair.

Lublin was one of the great fair-towns and commercial centers of Poland, and thousands of Jews from neighboring countries attended its fairs. Disputes growing out of their transactions there required adjudication by an authority of more than local standing, and Mordecai Jaffe, who had already established a reputation in Lithuania as rabbi of Grodno, was chosen as judge. The reputation he had won did much also to increase and extend his influence in the Council of Four Lands; and even after his return to Prague he was recognized as its principal leader (D. Gans, "Ẓemaḥ Dawid," p. 46a, Frankfort-on-the-Main, 1692; see also Harkavy in Hebr. transl. by Rabinowitz of Grätz, "Gesch." vol. vii. ["Ḥadashim wegam Yeshanim," p. 18]).

His last responsum, referring to a conditional divorce, is printed in the collection of R. Meïr of Lublin (No. 125). Jaffe dictated this opinion from his death-bed two days before he died. In it he said: "I am now lying on my bed, subject to the judgment of the King of Kings, hoping that He will heal and cure me of my illness." His signature was so faint that he directed his secretaries to authenticate it (ib.).

Jaffe had five children, two sons and three daughters: Perez Jaffe (d. 1647; see D. Kaufmann in Nissenbaum's "Le-Ḳorot ha-Yehudim be-Lublin," Warsaw, 1899); Aryeh Löb; Walka, the wife of R. Samuel Wahl; Bella, the wife of Jehiel Michael ha-Levi-Epstein, son of Abraham Epstein, rabbi of Brest; and a third daughter, the wife of Benjamin Wolf Günzburg, rabbi of Mayence.

  • Graetz, Hist. iv. 645;
  • Perles, Gesch. der Juden in Posen, in Monatsschrift, xiii. 409-416;
  • Horodetzki, Rabbi Mordecai Jaffe, in Ha-Eshkol, iii. 69-90, iv. 191-193.
H. R. J. D. E.Mordecai Jaffe:

Rabbi at Zelve in the eighteenth century; descendant of Abraham Aberl (the grandson of the author of the "Lebushim"). His signature occurs in connection with the last meeting of the Council of Lithuania.

Mordecai (Marcus) Jaffe of Berlin:

Rabbi at Schwerin until 1770; born in Bohemia; died 1812.His correspondence with Moses Mendelssohn is preserved in "Bikkure ha-'Ittim" (iv. 182, 219, 233). He was the father of Joseph Jaffe (1765-1841). His grandson Daniel Joseph Jaffe (1810-74) was the father of Sir Otto Jaffé.

Mordecai Jaffe of Brody:

Rabbi at Gorochov, government of Volhynia; died 1828; corresponded with Eliezer b. Aryeh Löb of Pilz (1788, 1802).

Mordecai Jaffe-Margolies-Schlesinger of Vienna:

Son-in-law of R. Raphael of Wilna; died in 1754. "Torat ha-Ḳena'ot" (p. 45, Amsterdam, 1737) contains two letters written to him about 1729 from Padua by the physician Jekuthiel b. Löb of Wilna.

Mordecai Gimpel Jaffe:

Rabbi at Ruzhany; died at Jehud (colony), near Petaḥ Tiḳwah, Palestine, in 1892. He was active in furthering the Zionist colonization movement among the Jews of Russia, his articles on which subject appeared in "Ha-Lebanon."

Mordecai b. Joseph of Plungian:

Descendant of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim"); born in 1721; went with his father from Posen to Plungian. At the age of twelve he was captured by soldiers of the army of the Polish Confederation and taken to Wilkoviski, where he was ransomed by the wealthy Enoch Zundel (son-in-law of Tobiah b. Joseph Solomon Ḥasid-Bacharach) for 1,200 "tinpes." He married Enoch Zundel's daughter. In 1756 he was appointed rabbi at Keidany.

Mordecai b. Meïr of Zamoscz:

Author of "Tabnit ha-Bayit," ethical poetry (Frankfort-on-the-Oder, 1746). Another edition, with a German translation by Maier Kohn, entitled "Abriss des Mikrokosmos," appeared in Vienna, 1853 (Steinschneider, "Hebr. Bibl." i. 96). He was the grandson of Isaac Ḳalmanḳes of Lublin. His mother belonged to the family of R. Löb b. Jacob Temerlesh.

Mordecai b. Moses of Prague:

Rabbi at Grodno and later at Cracow; married the daughter of Joel Singer of Cracow, and took the name of Jaffe-Singer; president of the yeshibah at Cracow in succession to Moses Storch. Died 1568.

Moritz Rosenthal:

Prominent merchant and communal worker; son of Hirsch and grandson of Eliezer (Lazar) Rosenthal; born at Bausk in 1818; died at Friedrichstadt July 29, 1896.

Moses Jaffe of Berlin:

His signature appears in a document of 1743 (see Landshuth, "'Ammude ha-'Abodah," p. 37).

Moses Jaffe of Pinsk:

Pupil of Meïr of Lublin (Responsa, pp. 86, 87); lived in the early part of the sixteenth century.

Moses b. Eliezer Jaffe:

Born in Poland; removed to Italy, where, at the end of the fifteenth century, he was prominent as a rabbi; mentioned in the "Shalshelet ha-Ḳabbalah" manuscript at St. Petersburg (see Wiener's supplement to "Da'at Ḳedoshim," p. 48). In printed editions of "Shalshelet ha-Ḳabbalah" he is described as "of Bologna," not "of Polonia."

Moses b. Eliezer Jaffe:

Rabbi at Cracow; grandfather of Joel Sirkes; died 1520.

Moses ben Issachar:

Author of "Pene Mosheh," sermons (Lublin, 1681).

Moses b. Mordecai (b. Joseph):

Rabbi at Wilkoviski in the eighteenth century. His signature appears in some taḳḳanot in the pinḳes of Wilkoviski. His son was Zundel Ḥalfon, the grammarian. H. R.

Sir Otto Jaffé:

Lord Mayor of Belfast; born in Hamburg 1846; the third son of Daniel Joseph Jaffe, and a descendant of Mordecai Jaffe. He was educated in Belfast, Hamburg, and Switzerland. After carrying on business in New York from 1865 to 1877, on the retirement of his brothers he became chief director of the Belfast firm. He had acquired considerable experience in navigation concerns, and in 1894 placed himself at the head of the successful agitation for the reporting and destruction of derelicts in the North Atlantic Ocean. Sir Otto is president of the Belfast Hebrew Congregation, a justice of the peace for the city of Belfast, and a member of the Harbor Board. He is also consul in Belfast for Germany. He was elected lord mayor of the city in 1899 and again in 1904, and was knighted in March, 1900.

Arms of Sir Otto Jaffé.
  • Jew. Chron. Jan. 27, 1899, and March 2, 1900;
  • Who's Who, London, 1903.
J. G. L.Philipp Jaffé:

German historian and philologist; born at Schwersenz, province of Posen, Germany, Feb. 17, 1819; committed suicide at Wittenberg April 3, 1870. After graduating from the gymnasium at Posen in 1838 he went to Berlin, entering a banking-house. Two years later he abandoned commercial life and studied at Berlin University(Ph.D. 1844). Seven years later appeared his great work, "Regesta Pontificum Romanorum ab Condita Ecclesia ad Annum p. Ch. n. 1198," containing 11,000 papal documents, Berlin, 1851 (2d ed. by Löwenfeld, Kaltenbrunner, and Ewald, Leipsic, 1885-88). This work made him well known, but he had still to earn a livelihood; he therefore again entered the university, this time as a student of medicine, at Berlin and later at Vienna. Graduating as M.D. from Berlin in 1853, he engaged in practise in that city for a year, and then became one of the editors of the "Monumenta Germaniæ Historica." This position he resigned in 1863, his chief work having been vols.xii., xvi., xvii., xviii., xix., and xx. of the "Scriptores."

In 1862 Jaffé was appointed assistant professor of history at Berlin University, where he lectured on Latin paleography and Roman and medieval chronology. In 1868 he became a Christian. During the last year of his life he suffered from delirium persecutionis.

Jaffé wrote, in addition to the above-mentioned works, "Gesch. des Deutschen Reiches Unter Lothar dem Sachsen," Berlin, 1843; "Gesch. des Deutschen Reiches Unter Konrad III." Hanover, 1845; and "Bibliotheca Rerum Germanicarum," ib. 1864-71. Jaffé furthermore collaborated with Wattenbach in editing the "Ecclesiæ Metropolitanæ Coloniensis Codices," which was published (Berlin, 1879) by Wattenbach after Jaffé's death.

  • Allg. Deutsche Biographie;
  • Meyers Konversations-Lexikon;
  • Brockhaus Konversations-Lexikon.
S. F. T. H.Rabinowitz, Raphael Naṭa':

Great-grandson of Simon Jaffe of Zhagory. See separate biography.

Raphael b. Jekuthiel ha-Kohen:

Rabbi at Hamburg 1722-1800. See separate biography.


Son of Enoch Zundel of Kalvariya; son-in-law of Ezekiel of Serhei, the grandson of Elijah of Wilna.

Samuel Ḥayyim:

Rabbi at Meseritz (Mezhirechye); son of Enoch Zundel of Krink.

Samuel b. Isaac Jaffe:

Author of "Yefeh To'ar." See separate biography.

Shabbethai b. Abraham Jaffe:

Rabbi at Weksna. His "haskamah" appears in the Talmud of Slavuta (1814 and 1816).

Sirkes, Joel:

Son of the daughter of Moses Jaffe.

Solomon (Zalman) b. Jacob:

Continued the printing business at Lublin after the death of his father in 1662; married Sarah, daughter of his uncle Kalonymus.

H. R.Theodor Julius Jaffé:

German actor; born at Berlin Aug. 17, 1823; died at Dresden April 11, 1898. In 1844 he appeared as an opera-singer in Troppau, Austrian Silesia, and then in Lübeck, Halle, Magdeburg, and Cologne. In 1847 he abandoned opera and became an actor. He filled engagements in Bremen (1847-49), Weimar (1849-53), Breslau (1853-56), and in Brunswick. In 1864 he went to Dresden as successor to Dawison, and was the leading actor of the royal theater there for thirty years. In 1894 he retired with the honorary degree of professor. He took every opportunity to visit the leading German theaters of Europe.

Jaffé's repertoire includes: Nathan der Weise, Richard III., Shylock, Iago, Franz Moor, Philipp II., Carlos, Tartuffe, Mephistopheles, etc.

  • Meyers Konversations-Lexikon;
  • Eisenberg, Biog. Lex.
S. F. T. H.Tobiah b. Mordecai (b. Joseph of Plungian):

Rabbi at Indur (1765-69) and later in Tykotzin.


Daughter of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim"); wife of Samuel Wahl (according to Horodetzki, in "Ha-Eshkol," vol. viii.).

Ẓebi Hirsch Jaffe:

Russian mathematician and writer; born at Amnastirshchizna, near Mstislavl, government of Moghilef, June 17, 1853. He received the usual Talmudic education and early showed extraordinary mathematical talent. His father would not allow him to enter a public school, and, not having the opportunity to study mathematics from books, Jaffe began to solve algebraic problems according to rules of his own discovery. In 1873 his father presented him with Ḥayyim Selig Slonimsky's works as well as with other mathematical works in Hebrew. In 1877 Jaffe published in "Ha-Ẓefirah" (No. 24) his first mathematical article, and since that time he has contributed many mathematical and Talmudic articles to that periodical and to "Ha-Asif." In 1881 Jaffe went to Moscow, where he exhibited his calculating-machine, which won him honorary mention by the administration of the exhibition. At the same time he published in Russian his mathematical treatise "K Graficheskomu Vypryamleniyu Dugi Okruzhnosti" (in "Matmaticheski Listok," 1881-82, Nos. 7-9). Early in the last decade of the nineteenth century Jaffe settled in Warsaw. In addition to his contributions to Hebrew periodicals he has contributed notes to Rabbinowitz's Hebrew translation of Grätz's "Gesch. der Juden" (Sokolov, "Sefer Zikkaron," p. 51, Warsaw, 1889).

Ẓebi Hirsch Saba (K):

Married Tilla, daughter of Liva ben Bezaleel of Prague (1512-1609).

Ẓemaḥ b. Jacob of Wilna:

Married a grand-daughter of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim"); father of Abraham Abele, rabbi at Vilkomir; Benjamin of Vilkomir was the son of the latter and father of Ẓemaḥ of Prehn, the father of Aaron Prehner (died at Wilna 1837).

Ẓemaḥ Schön:

Son of Löb RaHaN (R. Hirsch Nacheles ?), who was a descendant of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim"; "'Ir Wilna," p. 61, note 3); father of Solomon Ẓebi Hirsch, rabbi at Wilna, whose son was R. Eliezer Elijah Deiches (died at Wilna 1842).

The following also are regarded as among the descendants of Mordecai Jaffe ("Lebushim") or of his uncle:

  • Aaron b. Nathan Naṭa' of Trebovla (18th cent.; see Jew. Encyc. i. 19).
  • Abraham Ḥayyim Rosenberg (of New York city; see Rosenberg).
  • Abraham (rabbi at Jitomir; author of "Mishnat Abraham").
  • Adolph Hübsch (see separate article).
  • Isaac Wolf Alschwanger (rabbi at St. Petersburg, Russia, 1878-96).
  • Dob Bär (18th cent.; rabbi at Utyan; son of Ḥayyim b. Jacob of Karelitsch; disciple of Ḥayyim of Volozhin; left many works in manuscript; see Walden, "Shem ha-Gedolim he-Ḥadash," i., No. 46; Jacob's father also was called "Ḥayyim," and Mordecai Gimpel Jaffe of Ruzhany was the son of Dob Bär).
  • Dob Bär Jaffe (rabbi at Wirzen [government of Kovno] and Salaty).
  • Eliezer Kleinberg (of Bausk; d. New York city 1891).
  • Elijah Ragoler(rabbi at Kalish; d. 1850; see Frumkin, "Toledot Eliyahu," p. 4).
  • The Harkavy family (according to E. Harkavy, in "Dor Yesharim," p. 11, New York, 1903; but Abraham Harkavy of St. Petersburg doubts it).
  • Hirsch Kalisher (David Tebele Efrat, in "Toledot Anshe Shem," p. 14; descended from Ẓebi Hirsch Saba, not from the author of the "Lebushim").
  • Joshua Höschel b. Dob Bär Jaffe (b. Wirzen, government of Kovno, 1846; d. New York city 1898; rabbi at Plungian, Novgorod, 1869-82, Wirzen 1882-89, and New York city 1891-98; father of Moses Jaffe of New York).
  • Meïr of Kremenetz (David Tebele Efrat, in "Toledot Anshe Shem," p. 28, note 2; descendant of Ẓebi Hirsch Saba, not of Mordecai Jaffe).
  • Mendel Jaffe (19th cent.; rabbi at Hamburg; author of "Bet Menaḥem," commentaries to Bible and Talmud, Krotoschin, 1834; "Teshubot," vol. i., Hamburg, 1852; responsa, with commentaries of M. M. Jaffe, Leipsic, 1860).
  • Mordecai Michael b. Menahem Jaffe. Raphael (rabbi of Peiser; author of "Or la-Yesharim"; d. 1782).
  • Reuben Jaffe (of Khotin).
  • Samuel (rabbi at Byelostok; author of "Bigde Yesha'," Wilna, 1844).
  • Shalom b. Asher Israelsohn (rabbi at Toronto, Canada; b. at Yanischek 1861).
  • Shalom Elhanan b. Simon Jaffe (rabbi at New York; b. Wobolnik, government of Wilna, 1858; author of "Peri Eshel," on Yebamot, Wilna, 1877; "Tefillat Shelomoh," ib. 1888; 'Sho'el Ke-Inyan," responsa, etc., Jerusalem, 1895; "Siaḥ Shelomoh," ib. 1896).
  • Ẓebi Lebush (see Fuenn, "Ḳiryah Ne'emanah," p. 216).
  • Eisenstadt-Wiener, Da'at Ḳedoshim, p. 34, St. Petersburg, 1897;
  • Joseph Kohen-Ẓedeḳ, in Ha-Asam, p. 59, St. Petersburg, 1897.
H. R.