This Day In History 17 Cheshvan/November 18

The Kosover Rebbe, shlita, at the kever of his forebears in Kosov.
The Kosover Rebbe, shlita, at the kever of his forebears in Kosov.

17 Cheshvan

Yahrtzeiten

5357/1596, Harav Avraham Rappaport, zt”l, mechaber of Minchah Belulah

5584/1823, Harav Yaakov Kopel of Tismenitz, zt”l

5597/1836, Harav Mordechai Zev Orenstein, zt”l, Rav of Lvov

5664/1903, Harav Yehoshua Rosenfeld, zt”l, of Kaminka

5748/1987, Harav Meshulam Zishe Twersky, zt”l, the Chernobyler Rebbe of Bnei Brak


5586/1825

Harav Menachem Mendel of Kosov, zt”l, the Ahavas Shalom

Harav Menachem Mendel was born c. 5529/1769 in Kolomaya. His father, Harav Yaakov Koppel Chassid, was one of the closest Chassidim of the Baal Shem Tov and was the baal tefillah in his beis medrash. His mother was Rebbetzin Chayah, daughter of Harav Zalman of Kolomaya.

He married the daughter of his uncle, Harav Shmuel Simcha Zimmel of Kosov.

Initially, Reb Menachem Mendel learned and developed under his distinguished father. Later, he traveled to other leading tzaddikim of the generation, including Harav Ze’ev Wolf of Tcharni-Ostroha, who, before leaving for Eretz Yisrael in 5558/1798, appointed Rav Menachem Mendel to serve in his stead as Rebbe.

Reb Menachem Mendel was a close Chassid of Harav Tzvi Hirsch of Nadvorna, zy”a, mechaber of Tzvi Hashem Latzaddik. Reb Menachem Mendel journeyed to Harav Tzvi Hirsch of Nadvorna for 12 years.

Reb Menachem Mendel was an outstanding talmid chacham. His Torah learning took priority despite living in abject poverty for most of his life. He was known as a baki in the entire Torah, but most notable was his knowledge of Choshen Mishpat.

The avodas Hashem of Reb Menachem Mendel was intense and full of hislahavus. This was especially noticeable on Shabbos Kodesh, both during davening — particularly the tefillah of Kabbalas Shabbos — and during the tischen, where he spoke divrei Torah with fervor.

Reb Menachem Mendel was famous for his gemilus chassadim. He helped any Yid, most notably the needy of Eretz Yisrael. He took many orphans under his wing to marry them off at his own expense.

Among his leading talmidim were many who later served as Rebbes: Harav Tzvi Elimelech of Dinov (the Bnei Yissaschar), Harav Eliezer of Dzikov, Harav Naftali of Lizhensk, Harav Shraga Feivish of Bradshein, Harav Meshulam Nosson of Berdichev, Harav Menachem Mendel (mechaber of Derech Emunah), Harav Shmuel of Shinev (mechaber of Ramasayim Tzofim on Tanna d’vei Eliyahu) and many more, zechusam yagen aleinu.

Reb Menachem Mendel had two sons, Harav Chaim of Kosov, who wrote Toras Chaim, and Harav Dovid of Zablatov, who was the son-in-law of Harav Moshe Leib of Sassov, mechaber of Tzemach Dovid. Reb Menachem Mendel had an only daughter as well; her zivug sheini, Harav Gershon Ashkenazi of Kolomaya, mechaber of Avodas Hagershuni, put together and arranged his father-in-law’s sefer, Ahavas Shalom.

Reb Menachem Mendel was niftar on 17 Cheshvan 5586/1825 in Kosov and was buried there.

Zechuso yagen aleinu.


Nov. 18

In 1820, Captain Nathaniel Palmer became the first American to sight the continent of Antarctica.

In 1883, the United States and Canada adopted a system of Standard Time zones.

In 1903, the U.S. and Panama signed a treaty that granted the U.S. rights to build the Panama Canal.

In 1983, Argentina announced its ability to produce enriched uranium for use in nuclear weapons.