Page 189 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 41

Basic HTML Version

ing the 18th and 19th centuries, as in the case of Yizhak Satanow,
author of the Siddur commentary
Va-Ye’etar Yizhak
Entreated) and of Yizhak Stern, publisher of the periodical
Kokhevei Yizhak
(Isaac’s Stars) and Shadal (Samuel David
Luzzatto) who entitled one of his books of biblical commentary
(The Striver). Thus we observe the interesting fact
that the titles of various rabbinic works bear no relation to their
contents. In this respect, rabbinic works, and to some degree also
the writings of the early maskilim, differ markedly from general
works in which the titles allude to their contents.
Returning to our point of departure, the basic difference of
opinion between Judah Hasid and Eleazar of Worms, it is note­
worthy that despite the influence of the former and
his Sefer Hasi-
on Jewish religious life, we find but rarely that authors
accepted his admonition to remain anonymous. It may well be
that the persecutions and expulsions in Europe, that made life
difficult for the Jews in generations past, influenced authors to
assign especial value to perpetuating their names by means of
their works. We have ample testimony to this in the books that
were written during times of travail, when volumes that could be
readily transported carried with them the names of their authors.