EDREHI (Heb. אדרעי), MOSES BEN ISAAC


EDREHI (Heb. אדרעי), MOSES BEN ISAAC (c. 1774– c. 1842), Moroccan scholar. Edrehi was born in *Agadir, Morocco, but when the Jews were expelled from that city Moses, while still a boy, was taken with his parents to *Mogador, and after 1784 to Rabat. He began to preach in public at the age of 14, and became an itinerant preacher in North Africa. In 1791 he reached London, where he studied for a time in the bet ha-midrash Eẓ Ḥayyim and was accustomed to preach every Sabbath. In 1792 he published his Torat Ḥayyim readings for Friday nights according to the custom of the Jews of Morocco. In 1802 he proceeded to Amsterdam, where he published his Yad Moshe (1809), consisting of sermons preached in various places; and Ma'aseh Nissim (1818), tales of the ten tribes, with a Yiddish translation. An English edition of this somewhat preposterous work was published in London in 1834 under the title, Book of Miracles… With… an Account of Many Millions of Israelitical Children… Dwelling Beyond that River, later expanded as An Historical Account of the Ten Tribes Settled Beyond the River Sambatyon in the East (1836) which was prefaced by letters of commendation from Dutch, French, and English scholars and clergymen. About 1829 he met the writer John Wilson ("Christopher North") in Edinburgh who described him in his series Noctes Ambrosianae in Blackwood's Magazine. Edrehi finally left for Erez Israel, traveling by way of France, Italy, Malta, and Smyrna and taking four years on the journey. While in *Izmir in 1841, his belongings and manuscripts – among them a grammar of the French and English language with a translation in Spanish – were destroyed by fire. In 1842 he published in *Jerusalem the Azharot of Isaac b. Reuben *al-Bargeloni. After his death his son Isaac published his History of the Capital of Asia and the Turks, together with an Account of the Domestic Manners of the Turks in Turkey, 3 vols. (1855).

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

Slouschz, in: Revue du Monde Musulman, 7 (1909), 53–68; J.M. Toledano, Sarid u-Falit, 1 (1945), 79–80; A.M. Hyamson, Sephardim of England (1951), 263; Yaari, in: KS, 33 (1957/58), 521–8; 35 (1959/60), 269–72; Raphael, ibid., 34 (1958/59), 526–7; Roth, Mag Bibl, index.


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