NORZI, JEDIDIAH SOLOMON RAPHAEL BEN ABRAHAM (1560–1616), Italian rabbi, biblical and masoretic scholar. Born in Mantua in a well-known family (see *Norzi), he was a pupil of his uncle Moses Cases, and was later appointed a member of the rabbinate of that town. He achieved a great reputation through his critical masoretic commentary on the Bible, a work to which he devoted the greater part of his life. In his research he not only consulted published works, but undertook journeys to many countries to compare various manuscripts. He succeeded in gaining access to the manuscript of Toledo written in 1277 (known as the Codex de Rossi, no. 782). He consulted his friend R. Menahem *Lonzano, the midrashic and talmudic scholar.
Norzi's work, called Goder Pereẓ, was completed in 1626. It is in two parts; the first on the Pentateuch and the five Scrolls, and the second on the remaining books of the Bible together with some grammatical treatises. The work was published under the title Minḥat Shai (Mantua, 1742–44). The second edition (without the grammatical treatises) was published in Vienna (1816). Minḥat Shai is also printed in the rabbinical Bible Mikra'ot Gedolot. Norzi's introduction was published in 1819, and in 1876 by A. Jellinek. A commentary to the Minḥat Shai called Or ha-Ḥayyim (Vilna, 1867) was written by Ḥayyim Ze'ev Bender of Bobruisk.
Michael, Or, no. 951; S. Simonsohn, Toledot ha-Yehudim be-Dukkasut Mantovah (1964), 450, and notes 63, 64; C. Roth, The Jews in the Renaissance (1959), 313f.
Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.