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Ma'or Katan

MA'OR KATAN (Lucerna, Lutzerner, Luzerner), family of physicians in Vienna and Prague in the 17th century, who intermarried with the *Fraenkel-Teomim family. The family is well known mainly because of their internal correspondence from 1619, preserved in the Viennese imperial archives. The first of the family, MOSES BEN LOEB (d. 1605), was elected in 1570 and 1573 as physician of the Frankfurt community. He presented a certificate by the bet din of Mantua that he belonged to the Freistaedtl family there. His son, JUDAH LEIB (Leva, Leo Lucerna Hebraeus Aulicus; d. 1635), was physician and at the same time rabbi in Vienna. He built himself a synagogue in his house, and left unpublished books. His grandson, Menahem Mendel *Auerbach, describes him in his Atteret Zekenim (1702), para. 572. Another son, AARON, was employed by the Prague Jewish community in 1619 as physician, attending Christians as well. Through his mother and his wife he was related to Yom Tov Lipmann *Heller, who in his Ma'adanei Melekh on Ḥullin 66b acknowledges information supplied by Aaron. Besides attaining the degree of doctor of medicine he was also a doctor of physics and philosophy from the university at Padua, and was the only Jewish physician fully recognized by the Vienna medical faculty.


B. Wachstein, Die Inschriften des alten Judenfriedhofes in Wien, 1 (1912), index; A. Landau-B. Wachstein, Juedische Privatbriefe aus dem Jahr 1619 (1911), index; G. Kisch, in: JGGJCČ, 6 (1934), 15; I. Kracauer, Geschichte der Juden in Frankfurt a. M. (11501824), 2 (1927), 260; M. Grunwald, Vienna (1936), index.

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