This Day In History 12 Cheshvan/November 1

In 5059/1298, Rindfleisch massacres claimed 200 Jewish lives, Hy”d.

In 5736/1975, the U.N. declared that Zionism is racism.


5448/1687, Harav Moshe Kremer, zt”l, Rav of Vilna, grandfather of the Gra

5548/1787, Harav Zev Wolf Kitzes, zy”a, disciple of the Baal Shem Tov

5612/1851, Harav Yisrael Dov Ber, zt”l, of Stefan

5626/1865, Harav Nachum of Shadik, zt”l

5752/1991, Harav Yehudah Tzadkah, Zt”l, Rosh Yeshivah of Porat Yosef

Harav Yehudah Tzadkah was born in Yerushalayim in 5670/1910. His father was Rav Shaul Tzadkah, the great-grandson of Rav Tzadkah Chutzin, author of Tzedakah u’Mishpat. The Tzadkah family lived in the Beis Yisrael neighborhood of Yerushalayim.

Rav Yehudah always credited his mother, who was a niece of the Ben Ish Chai, for guiding him properly in Torah.

When Rav Yehudah was only five years old, he began to study in a Talmud Torah near his home. After completing Talmud Torah, 12-year-old Yehudah enrolled in the Porat Yosef Yeshivah in Yerushalayim.

Yehudah Tzadkah became very close with the Roshei Yeshivah of Porat Yosef, Rav Yaakov Ades and Rav Ezra Attia, zecher tzaddikim livrachah. At night he would learn in the Beer Sheva shul in the Beis Yisrael neighborhood. On Friday nights he would study in the Shoshanim LeDovid shul, in the company of such renowned Sephardic Gedolim as Rav Yaakov Chaim Sofer, zt”l, mechaber of Kaf Hachayim.

Rav Yehuda married Fahima, the daughter of Rav Selim Tzalach Batat of Baghdad, and together they built a Torah home. Fahima passed away when she was 57. Later he married Tamar Asuderi, who cared for him until his final day.

In 5697/1937, when Chacham Eliyahu Lopes, zt”l, one of the respected Rabbanim in Porat Yosef, felt too weak to continue teaching, Rav Ezra Attia declared, “From now on Rav Yehudah will teach Rav Eliyahu’s talmidim. True, Rav Yehudah is young, but he possesses vast knowledge.”

During the Jordanian siege of the Old City, Porat Yosef’s talmidim continued to learn. But in the end, the Jordanians captured the Old City. Among those taken captive by the Jordanians was the Rosh Yeshivah’s son, Rav Yosef Attia.

Determined not to close the yeshivah, Rav Yehudah established learning sessions in shuls in Geulah, Katamon and the Bucharian quarter. To this day, the Porat Yosef Yeshivah in Geulah continues to flourish.

In 5730/1970, when Rav Ezra Attiah was niftar, all of the staff of the yeshivah agreed that only one man could replace him: Rav Yehudah Tzadkah.

During the last Elul of his life, Rav Yehudah would often visit the yeshivah, urging the talmidim to increase their Torah study and to grow in yiras shamayim and avodas Hashem. On Rosh Hashanah 5752/1991, he davened in the Shaul Tzadkah shul, surrounded by his family and talmidim.

On the morning of 12 Cheshvan 5752/1991, Rav Yehudah returned his pure soul to its Creator.

Rav Yehudah was buried in his family plot in the Sanhedriah cemetery in Yerushalayim. Yehi zichro baruch.

This article was culled from the material in a book on Sefardic Gedolim by Yehudah Azouli.

Nov. 1

In 1478, the Spanish Inquisition was established.

In 1765, the Stamp Act, passed by the British Parliament, went into effect, prompting stiff resistance from American colonists.

In 1936, in a speech in Milan, Italy, Benito Mussolini described the alliance between his country and Nazi Germany as an “axis” running between Rome and Berlin.

In 1989, East Germany reopened its border with Czechoslovakia, prompting tens of thousands of refugees to flee to the West.