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Judah IV

JUDAH IV (fl. c. 385–400 C.E.), patriarch, son of *Gamaliel V. Very little is known about him, and even that little is doubtful. He seems to have been unpopular with contemporary rabbis, and when his sister Mana died, a leading Palestinian scholar refused to attend her funeral (TJ, Ber. 3:1, 6a; cf. Ta'an. 23b). Epiphanius (Adversus Haereses, 30:7, 3) reports, in the name of a convert called Joseph, that under the influence of his evil companions, the young patriarch had become dissipated. Under Judah IV the general decline of the patriarchate continued, although Jewish religious and judicial privileges were confirmed by Arcadius and *Honorius in 396. According to Bacher (Pal. Amor, 3 (1899), 312f.), Judah IV is identical with the R. Judah Nesiah who asked Phinehas b. Ḥama why Boaz had demeaned himself to "lie down at the end of the heap of grain" (Ruth R. 5:15 on Ruth 3:7). This identification, however, is uncertain, since Phinehas may have been a contemporary of Judah III. Judah IV was the father of *Hillel, the patriarch who fixed the calendar.


Graetz, Gesch, 4 (1908), 354, 449; M. Avi-Yonah, Bi-Ymei Roma u-Byzantiyyon (1952), 78f., 116f., 220; Hyman, Toledot; Baron, Social2, 2 (1952), 191ff.

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.