Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World

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Israel ben Samuel Gaon ha-Kohen
(306 words)

Abū ʾl-ʿAlā Israel ben Samuel Gaon ha-Kohen was the son of Samuel ben Hophni. During his father’s tenure as gaon of the Sura academy, he was the academy’s secretary and scribe (Heb. sofer). Several of Samuel’s letters with Israel’s signature have survived in the Cairo Geniza. When Samuel ben Hophni died in 1013, he left a will asking his successor as gaon, Dosa ben Saʿadya, to take care of “the boy,” meaning to give Israel a share in the contributions received by the academy. This request met with some opposition, as exemplified by a letter from 1015 which mentions an order by Hay Gaon not to sen…

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Roni Shweka, “Israel ben Samuel Gaon ha-Kohen”, in: Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World, Executive Editor Norman A. Stillman. Consulted online on 26 February 2020
First published online: 2010

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