#9 From the Rambam to the Zohar: Jewish History of the 12th & 13th Centuries (Part 3: 1200-1250)

Life in the first half of the 13th Century continued in the shadow of dramatic and perilous historical events including the Second Reconquista; the fourth to sixth crusades; the rule of the Ayyubids; the Mongol invasion; the rise of the Mamluks; and the emergence of high scholasticism. Within this context, Jewish life was often fraught with danger and uncertainty, but it also gave rise to a number of extraordinary individuals. David Solomon examines the personalities and contributions of some of the significant Jewish figures who lived during this time. He also explores the impact of numerous initiatives concerning Jews, including various papal decrees, the Fourth Lateran Council, the beginning of the Inquisition, the burning of Jewish texts, forced disputations, and anti-semitic canards. This period also saw Jewish spiritual, cultural and linguistic developments that would shape the lives of communities for centuries.

Woodcut carved by Johann von Armssheim (1483). Portays a disputation between Jewish and Christian scholars (Soncino Blaetter, Berlin, 1929. Jerusalem, B. M. Ansbacher Collection). Public domain – This file has been identified as being free of known restrictions under copyright law, including all related and neighbouring rights.



This lecture series was recorded in 2018 at Chabad Glen Eira. Notes for the lecture will be available to Patreon subscribers when all four lectures have been released.

2 Replies to “#9 From the Rambam to the Zohar: Jewish History of the 12th & 13th Centuries (Part 3: 1200-1250)”

  1. You do not mention Abraham Abulafia.
    Who was influenced by the Guide to the Perplexed and very influenced by Eleazar of Worms commentary on the Sefer Yetzira.
    Additionally, Azriel of Gerona was first to write down the term Ain Zoph and the Sephirot names. There is no Ain Zoph in the Bible. I think Abulafia studied with Azriel also.

Comments are closed.