Samuel ibn Naghrillah

Born on 993

Died on 1056

Samuel ibn Naghrillah;

(Hebrew: שמואל הלוי בן יוסף הנגידSh’muel HaLevi ben Yosef HaNagid; Arabic: أبو إسحاق إسماعيل بن النغريلة‎ ʾAbū ʾIsḥāq ʾIsmāʿīl bin an-Naghrīlah), also known as Samuel HaNagid (Hebrew: שמואל הנגידShmuel HaNagid, lit. Samuel the Prince) (born 993; died after 1056), was a medieval Spanish Talmudic scholar, grammarian, philologist, soldier, merchant, politician, and an influential poet who lived in Iberia at the time of the Moorish rule. His poetry was one area through which he was well known. He was perhaps the most politically influential Jew in Muslim Spain.

Samuel ibn Naghrillah was an Andalusian Jew born in Mérida in 993. He studied Jewish law and became a Talmudic scholar who was fluent in both Hebrew and Arabic.

He started his life as a shopkeeper and merchant in Córdoba. However, civil war broke out in 1009 against the Amirid Kingdom and Berbers took the city in 1013, forcing him to flee from Córdoba. In Málaga, he started a spice shop. His relations with the Granada royal court, and his eventual promotion to the position of vizier, happened in a coincidental manner. Jacobs, pulled from the Sefer Seder ha-kabbalah this interesting account. The shop he set up was near the palace of the vizier of Granada, Abu al-Kasim ibn al-Arif. The vizier met Samuel ibn Naghrillah when his maid servant began to ask Naghrillah to write letters for her. Eventually Naghrillah was given the job of a tax collector, then a secretary, and finally an assistant vizier of state to the Berber king Habbus al-Muzaffar.

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