Image: Ben Asher Jacob

Jacob Ben Asher (1269?-1340?)

Jacob Ben Asher (1269?-1340?), commentator on the Bible and codifier of Jewish law. The son of the famous German scholar Rabbi Asher, Jacob was born in Germany, possibly in the city of Cologne, but eventually he traveled to Spain. He died about 1340 and was buried in Toledo, Spain.

Jacob`s main work is the "Arbaah Turim"

Jacob`s main work is the "Arbaah Turim" (Four Columns), a codification of Talmudic laws (Jewish civil and religious decrees), presented in four divisions: "Orah Hayyim" (Way of Life), "Eben Ezer" (Stone of Help), "Yoreh Deah" (Teacher of Knowledge), and "Hoshen Mishpat" (Breastplate of Judgment). This code covers the Sabbath and festivals, marriage and divorce, the dietary regimen, and civil and criminal law. The "Arbaah Turim" has remained authoritative for Jews of both the Sephardic culture (centered in Moorish Spain) and the Ashkenazic culture (centered in central and eastern Europe). Jacob`s successors elaborated upon the code, and it later formed the basis of the "Shulhan Arukh "(Set Table) "," the standard code of laws for orthodox Judaism.

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