Today’s Yahrtzeits & History – 27 Elul


yahrtzeit-candlesRav Moshe Segal of Lvov, known as Rosh Hagolah Umanhig Hamedinah (1719).

Rav Yitzchak Chiyus, Rav in Skolya (1726). Author of of the Mishnah commentary, Zera Yitzchak

Rav Nosson Adler, teacher of the Chasam Sofer, author of Mishnah DiRabi Nasan (1800)

Rav Yaakov Leib of Kvahl (1833)

Rav Shalom Rokeach of Belz (the Sar Shalom), founder of Belz Chassidus (1779-1855). Born in Brody and orphaned at a young age, he was brought up by his uncle, Rav Yissachar Ber, Rav of Skol (Sokohl). He was nurtured by his mentors, the Chozeh of Lublin and Rav Shlomo Lutzker, the Divras Shlomo. In 1817, he was appointed Rav of Belz, and he in 1843, the famed Belz Beis Hamedrash was completed. (It was entirely destroyed during World War II, but a replica was built in Yerushalayim years later). Among his early students was Rav Shlomo Kluger of Brody. Since the beginnings of the movement, the misnagdim had accused chasidim of devoting too much time to joyous celebrations in fellowship with their rebbes, at the expense of Torah study. By stressing the overriding importance of in-depth Torah study, the Belzer Rebbe removed the stigma of superficiality that had plagued Chasidism. He was succeeded by his son, Rav Yehoshua. In the 1940s, the Nazis all but wiped out the splendor that was Belz. After the war, the remnants of Belzer Chasidus – under the leadership of the surviving scion of the Belz dynasty, the young Rabbi Yissachar Dov – miraculously restored the former grandeur of Belz. Today the glorious new Belzer yeshivah building graces the Jerusalem skyline. Some of his teachings are recorded in the sefer, Dover Shalom.

Rav Binyamin Tzvi Auerbach (1808-1873).. Born to Rav Avraham, a mohel in Strasburg, in France, he served as a rabbi in Darmstadt for ten years after earning semicha as well as a PhD in philosophy and Semitic languages. While living in Frankfurt, Rav Auerbach wrote the sefer Bris Avraham in memory of his father. He also spent much of his time editing the sefer Ha’Eshkol, written by the Raavad of Norvona. Years later, when he became the Rav of Halberstat, he published his work as a commentary named Nachal Eshkol.

Rav Moshe Nota Yungreis, the Menuchas Asher (1889). [this may be an error; Asher Anshel Jungreisz is the mechaber of Menuchas Asher].

Today in History – 27 Elul

· Expulsion of Jews from Frankfurt, commemorated as a Taanis Tzibur, 1614
· Jews of New York barred from voting, 1737.
· First Jew known to have settled in Canada, 1760.
· Kiev fell to Germany, 1941.
· Rabin signed the Oslo Accords with PLO terrorist leader Arafat, 1993. A historic handshake is made between Prime Minister Rabin and PLO leader Yasser Arafat on the White House lawn.

Yahrtzeits – 28 Elul

Shaul Hamelech and his three sons, 880 BCE or 878 BCE

Rav Sa’adya, father-in-law of Rav Chaim Vital (1574)

Rav Chaim Yehuda Leib Auerbach, co-founder and rosh yeshiva of Shaar Hashomayim, father of Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach (1954). The yeshiva came to occupy its current premises on Rechov Rashi in the Mekor Boruch neighborhood. Among the yeshiva’s first talmidim in the Old City was Rav Tzvi Pesach Frank. It remained there until 1948, when fighting broke out prior to the departure of the British. Haganah fighters took up a position on the roof of the yeshiva from where they were able to fire on the Jordanians. When the Old City fell to the Jordanians shortly thereafter, the conquering Jordanians set fire to the building with all the seforim and furniture inside. One of Rav Chaim Leib’s sons, Rav Raphael Auerbach, assumed leadership of the yeshiva after his father’s petira. Rav Chaim was also author of Chacham Lev.

Rav Aryeh Carmell (1917-2006) was born in England . At the age of 16 Aryeh was sent to study under Rav Eliyahu Eliezer Dessler and became his talmid muvhak. Rav Carmell began to compile Rav Dessler’s teachings under his guidance. After the war he married, making his home in London. He would spend the morning hours learning bechavrusa with some of London’s leading rabbanim. In the afternoon he would go to his office to work for a few hours, setting aside time every day to organize chessed and outreach activities. He was among the first to become involved in Jewish outreach over 50 years ago. Following Rav Dessler’s petirah he started Yad Eliyahu in London, where children who studied at public schools were taught ahavas Torah and yiras Shomayim. He published Michtav MeEliyohu, a compilation of Rav Dessler’s teachings. The first three volumes were edited with Rav Alter Halperin and Rav Chaim Friedlander, while Rav Carmell edited the fourth and fifth volumes
by himself. He also adapted parts of the work into a book in English called Strive for Truth. He also co-edited Challenge: Torah Views on Science and its Problems and wrote an important booklet called Aid to Talmud Study. When the wave of Russian aliya began he wrote a book called Masterplan. Based on Rav Shamshon Raphael Hirsch’s Chorev, it also presented reasons behind the mitzvos. Moving to Eretz Yisrael in 1972, Carmell settled in Jerusalem’s Bayit Vegan neighborhood and helped Rav Boruch Horowitz found Yeshivas Dvar Yerushalayim, Jerusalem’s first yeshiva for baalei teshuvoh. He gave shiurim on gemora, hashkofoh and Mussar.

Today in History – 28 Elul

· The infamous inquisitor of Aragon Pedro Arbues was slain, 1485. Appointed by Torquemada, he was zealous in finding lapsed “new Christians” to bring before the Inquisition and have them burned alive. He was murdered in church by a group of Marranos in retaliation for his actions against their families. The perpetrators were caught, had their hands cut off, and were then beheaded and quartered. Other leaders such as Francisco de Santa Fe committed suicide, or fled to France. Arbues was canonized by the Vatican in 1867.
· Peter the Great ordered 13 of his soldiers who participated in anti-Jewish riots hanged, 1708.
· French Jews granted full citizenship for the first time since the Roman Empire, 1791.
· First shul in South Africa, Tikvas Yisrael, was dedicated in Cape Town, 1849.
· Gedera attacked by Arabs, 1901.
· U.S. President Warren G. Harding signed a joint resolution of Congress approving the establishment in Palestine of a Jewish homeland, 1922.

(Yahrtzeits licensed to by Manny Saltiel and Newscenter}


  1. Re. the Yartzeit today of HaRav Shalom Rokach ZT”L, the first Belzer Rebbe:

    There is a Chassidic custom for the Shaliach Tzibur for Yamim Noraim to spend the three days before Rosh HaShanah concentrating on and preparing very carefully the Tfilos. His son, HaRav Yehoshua ZT”L (in his Hesped at the Levayah), stated that HaRav Shalom ZT”L had been summoned to the Beis Din Shel Maalah on the 27th of Elul to prepare for being the Baal Tfilah there on Rosh HaShanah.

    Zchusam Yagen Aleinu VeAl Kal Yisrael, Amen!