Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World

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Cahen, Abraham
(347 words)

Abraham Cahen was born in Metz in 1831, into a family of notables established in that city since the sixteenth century. After earning his high school diploma, he attended the Central Rabbinical School and was ordained in 1861. He was appointed rabbi in Constantine, Algeria, in 1863, and was named chief rabbi in 1867. In 1877, he became chief rabbi of Algiers.

Cahen’s rabbinate in both cities was marked by opposition from local rabbis and community leaders. Their dissatisfaction was provoked in part by his ignorance of local traditions—he learned Arabic onl…

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Colette Zytnicki, “Cahen, Abraham”, in: Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World, Executive Editor Norman A. Stillman. Consulted online on 22 July 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1878-9781_ejiw_SIM_000166>
First published online: 2010

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