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AIRE:

A fortified town on the river Adour, in southern France. There is no certainty that a Jewish community ever existed here; but about the middle of the thirteenth century a Hebrew poet composed a eulogy on his native town which, from its Hebrew spelling (), would seem to have been Aire. This poet was Isaac ben Abraham ha-Gorni. The appellation Ha-Gorni ("he of the threshing-floor") is derived from the modern name of Aire, which signifies a barn or threshing-floor; and by a play on words, the poet applies this name to his native place. He mentions several of his fellowtowns men: one Samuel, whom he describes as "prophet," and Aaron, a learned Talmudist, besides a number of private individuals.

Bibliography:
  • Monatsschrift, 1878, p. 476; 1879, p. 17; 1882, pp. 510-523;
  • Jedaiah Bedersi, Ḥotam Taknit, ed. Steinschneider, introd. p. 2;
  • Gross, Gallia Judaica, p. 49;
  • Steinschneider, Cat. Munich, Nos. 128 et seq.
M. S.
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