Halakhic Texts in Middle Ages

Early Medieval Halakhic Texts

In the early middle ages, leading scholars across Europe and North Africa produced different genres of legal writings.

In Ashkenaz

The rabbis of France and Germany created new genres of halakhic literature.

Commentaries on Alfasi

Alfasi's groundbreaking legal code invited criticism, defense, and supplementation.

Rabbi Isaac Alfasi: Rif

A legal code for the Jews of medieval North Africa and Spain.

Caro’s Codificatory Approach

The disparate opinions in Caro's Bet Yosef and the bottom line decisions in his Shulhan Arukh combined to create the halakhic code par excellence.

Commentaries on the Mishneh Torah

The Mishneh Torah sparked the creation of extensive and voluminous commentary.

Critical Reactions to Mishneh Torah

Maimonides' two main critics, Rabad and Asheri, argued that multiplicity of opinions is a positive and vital force in Jewish law.

Goals of the Mishneh Torah

In order to make his code categorical and prescriptive, Maimonides deliberately omitted sources and did not reference his predecessors.

Halakhic Texts in Middle Ages

Halakhic Texts in Middle Ages. Sources on Jewish Law. Jewish Texts