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ḤAMUL ELIEZER MAẒLIAḤ B. ABRAHAM DE VITERBO:

Roman rabbi and physician in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. He was of a family of rabbis, physicians, and merchants. In 1570 he appears as "fattore" or representative of a Jewish congregation, but in 1587 he is mentioned as occupying the Roman rabbinate. He is described as one of the most erudite rabbinical scholars of his age. Among his contemporaries were R. Joseph b. Sabatai de Rieti of Sienna and R. Raphael b. Benjamin di Modigliano. Besides many responsa, he wrote a Latin essay defending his coreligionists against the charge of falsifying the Scriptures. This he addressed to Cardinal Sirleto, Protector of the Neophytes in Rome. To the Italian reader he is best known by his "Il Tempio di Oratori" (Venice, 1585), a translation of Moses Rieti's , which became one of the most popular devotional works among the Italian Jews. This translation he dedicated in Hebrew verse to Donna Corcos, daughter of Solomon Corcos, president of the congregation. As does his letter to Sirleto, it bears his Italian name, "Lazaro Hebreo da Viterbo."

Bibliography:
  • Vogelstein and Rieger, Gesch. der Juden in Rom, ii. 363 et seq.
E. C. S. M.
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