Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World

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Dayan Family
(785 words)

The Dayan family in Aleppo had an ancient tradition tracing its descent to King David. In the introduction to his book Yashir Moshe (Heb. Moses Sang), Rabbi Moses Dayan (d. 1901) actually detailed the family tree for eighty-five generations from King David to himself.

Members of the family were the leaders of the Jewish community of Aleppo for centuries. The family’s original name was Nasi (Heb. prince), but it was later known as Dayan (Heb. dayyan, judge) in recognition of the importance of passing judgments in the role of communal leadership. Authority was passed dow…

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Yaron Harel, “Dayan Family”, in: Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World, Executive Editor Norman A. Stillman. Consulted online on 07 December 2021
First published online: 2010

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