Encyclopedia of Jewish History and Culture Online

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Nasi (from the Hebrew nasa; “to raise,” “to raise up”) is used in Biblical Hebrew to mean patriarch, exilarch, or prince. Originally a term for tribal princes, the meaning of the term changed over time, coming to be used to denote political leadership, political representation, high social status, or as an honorific. Since its meaning was defined as “president” in Modern Hebrew, nasi has also denoted the president of the modern polity since the foundation of the State of Israel in 1948.

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Balke, Ralf, “Nasi”, in: Encyclopedia of Jewish History and Culture Online, Original German Language Edition: Enzyklopädie Jüdischer Geschichte und Kultur. Im Auftrag der Sächsischen Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Leipzig herausgegeben von Dan Diner. © J.B. Metzler, Stuttgart/Springer-Verlag GmbH Deutschland 2011–2017. Consulted online on 08 December 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2468-8894_ejhc_COM_0575>
First published online: 2017
First print edition: 20210312

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