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Kingdom of Priests

Regarding Elie Wiesel’s new biography Rashi, on the great medieval French commentator on the Torah, the Hebrew Bible, and the Talmud, I mentioned that he’s important not just for Jews but for Christians. His name is an acronym for Rabbi Shlomo son of Yitzhak. Writes Wiesel about Nicholas of Lyra (13th century):

He cited Rashi so frequently that a certain Jean Mercier, at the College Royal of Paris, nicknamed him Simius Solomonis, Solomon’s (Shlomo’s) monkey.

Through Nicholas of Lyra, Rashi had a powerful influence on Martin Luther whose German translation of the Bible owes much to him.

The King James Bible, interestingly, owes more in particular to Radak, Rabbi David Kimchi, another French sage who lived a little later (1160-1235).
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