Search Results

You are looking at 1 - 5 of 5 items for

  • Author or Editor: Marc Herman x
  • Search level: All x
Clear All
Author:

Abstract

The adoption and adaptation of Maimonidean ideas by a staggering array of Jewish thinkers, especially those who opposed his philosophical and legal positions, testifies to Maimonides’s success in reframing Jewish thought. This essay focuses on an exchange between Daniel ben Saadia ha-Bavli (fl. early thirteenth century) and Abraham Maimonides (1186–1237), which occurred in the shadow of twelfth-century institutional opposition to Maimonides (1138–1204), a period in which Maimonides’s reputation began to take shape. Despite the staunch opposition of Daniel’s teacher, Samuel ben ʿElī Ibn al-Dastūr (d. 1194/1197), to Maimonides, as well as Daniel’s own disagreements with Maimonidean theology, Daniel assimilated many Maimonidean legal doctrines, integrating them into his jurisprudential thought. Their exchange shows that both Abraham and Daniel, to different degrees, evaluated Maimonides’s writings with a certain degree of distance, absent much of the rancor of earlier and later Maimonidean controversies. Daniel’s critical engagement with Maimonides underscores that even those educated in the heart of the opposition to the Great Eagle derived much from his writings. Much like those who rejected Maimonidean philosophy, later talmudists who spurned aspects of Maimonides’s halakhah benefited profoundly from his efforts at categorization, organization, and systematization.

In: Accounting for the Commandments in Medieval Judaism
Accounting for the Commandments in Medieval Judaism explores the discursive formation of the commandments as a generative matrix of Jewish thought and life in the posttalmudic period. Each study sheds light on how medieval Jews crafted the commandments out of theretofore underdetermined material. By systematizing, representing, or interrogating the amorphous category of commandment, medieval Jewish authors across both the Islamic and Christian spheres of influence sought to explain, justify, and characterize Israel’s legal system, divine revelation, the cosmos, and even the divine order. This volume correlates bodies of knowledge—such as jurisprudence, philosophy, ethics, pietism, and kabbalah—that are normally treated in isolation into a single conversation about a shared constitutional concern.

Abstract

This chapter provides a general overview of approaches to the commandments in medieval Judaism, particularly among Jews who embraced the authority of the ancient rabbis. It focuses on the intertwined development of two discourses: commandment enumeration and commandment rationalization. And it highlights the decisive roles played by Saadia Gaon and Maimonides in framing these two subjects, charting these topics from the intellectually fertile period of the tenth century, at the height of Judaeo-Islamic acculturation, to the wave of kabbalistic creativity in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. This chapter proposes that the commandments—whether enumerated, contemplated, rendered symbolic, or embodied—functioned as vessels into which medieval Jewish thinkers of all stripes poured a variety of competing and contradictory ideas. However ramified, multiple, and internally debated, the chapter theorizes medieval treatments of the commandments as a single generative matrix of Jewish thought and life in the posttalmudic period.

In: Accounting for the Commandments in Medieval Judaism

Our study was conducted on 40 Norway spruces [Picea abies (L.) Karst.] from a stand located in the Belgian Ardennes. Twenty trees were randomly sampled from a slow-growth category, and twenty others from a fast -growth category. The hypothesis under testing is fourfold: increased tree growth rate may affect 1) the intra-ring weighted frequency distribution of tracheid length, 2) the inter-ring variation (from pith to bark) of the parameters describing this frequency distribution, 3) the interring variation of the mean tracheid length, and 4) the correlation between yearly mean tracheid length and yearly ring width.

Free access
In: IAWA Journal

Fourteen Norway spruces [Picea abies (L.) Karst.], randomly sampled as 7 fast-grown and 7 slow-grown trees, were used to test whether an increased tree growth rate in circumference affects the intra-ring and inter-ring trajectories of the microfibril angle in the S2 layer of the tracheid wall. Those trajectories describe the fluctuations of the S2 microfibril angle, respectively, from earlywood to latewood within rings and from pith to bark among rings. Using the cross-field pit apertures, intra-ring measures of microfibril angle were made at 11 equally-spaced sampling sites over each of 8 growth rings, following an 11 × 8 doubly repeated measures design with the tree as the 'subject' on which repeated measures were made. All the intra-ring trajectories of microfibril angle decreased linearly from earlywood to latewood, whereas the inter-ring trajectories showed significant year effects. Both types of trajectories are significantly affected by the growth rate after first thinning, as the fast-grown spruces showed a systematically larger microfibril angle and a mean microfibril angle of 290 compared to 21 0 for the slow-grown spruces. Thus, lower tensile and tear strengths of tracheids as well as some modifications of the mechanical properties of solid wood and paper can be expected from Norway spruces growing faster than 2.2 cm/year in circumference.

Free access
In: IAWA Journal