Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World

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Benjamin al-Nahāwandī
(728 words)

Benjamin al-Nahāwandī, whose name suggests that he was of Persian origin, was active in the first half of the ninth century in the Jewish communities of Babylonia and Persia. What is known about him comes mainly from Karaite sources. He wrote a Book of Commandments (Sefer Miṣvot), a Book of Laws (Sefer Dinim), and several biblical commentaries, but few of his works have survived. The Karaites of the tenth and eleventh centuries considered him and his predecessor, ‘Anan ben David, to have been forerunners of the Karaite movement because they both denied the divine authority of the Oral L…

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Yoram Erder, “Benjamin al-Nahāwandī”, in: Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World, Executive Editor Norman A. Stillman. Consulted online on 05 February 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1878-9781_ejiw_SIM_0003970>
First published online: 2010

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