Saul Lieberman (1898-1983), Talmudic Scholar and Classicist

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Long acknowledged as one of the preeminent scholars of his generation, this book gives a sense of the multi-faceted nature of Lieberman’s greatness: his method of establishing the correct reading of given rabbinic text; his mastery of Greek and Latin in their historical and cultural contexts; the incredible literary sophistication that Lieberman utilized in approaching ancient texts; his salient contribution to medieval history and literature; his guidance in biblical exegesis. The work contains a moving Introduction by Elie Wiesel. The bibliography is particularly noteworthy.


“The late Rabbi Saul Lieberman’s contribution to the study of Talmud was incomparable: his stress on the correct stylistic reading of the text, his mastery of Greek and Latin, and his placement of the Talmud within the cultural context of its time. A product of both European Jewish learning and Western European scientific study, he ably combined both disciplines to deepen the appreciation of rabbinic thought…..Indeed, [this book] honors it subject’s memory quite well. Recommended for college libraries with a Jewish Studies division.” – Association of Jewish Libraries Newsletter “In this meticulously edited volume by Professor Meir Lubetski, the collected essays provide the reader, whether scholar or layman, with a broad, penetrating and accessible overview of the man, his life, his work and his influence on generations of scholars upon whom he has left his indelible imprimatur.” – Stephen H. Garrin, Jewish Book Annual, Editor

“Lubetski brings an excellent series of scholarly articles which humanizes this great scholar and presents his legacy with cogency and clarity. The editor is painstaking in the presentation of the scholarly material. The notes and indices are extremely valuable. He has contributed to the vast body of literature, law and legend surrounding the twentieth century’s great Talmudic scholar who combined European Jewish learning and Western European scientific study. I recommend this book to my colleagues for whom it will be a constant reminder of their great gift in sitting at the feet of a revered teacher.” – Rabbi Allan Blaine, Temple Beth El, Belle Harbor, NY

Table of Contents

Table of contents:
Foreword: Saul Lieberman’s Devotion to Torat Eretz Yisrael (Meir Lubetski)
Introduction (Elie Wiesel)
The Methodology of Professor Saul Lieberman in Determining the Correct Reading of a Text (Dov Zlotnick)
Did Saul Lieberman Know Greek and Latin? (Howard Jacobson)
Professor Saul Lieberman as Lexicographer: Hebrew, Greek, Latin (Howard Marblestone)
Professor Lieberman’s “Uncompleted” Literary Legacy (Abraham Goldberg)
Professor Saul Lieberman and Medieval Rabbinic Literature (Israel M. Ta-Shma)
How Was the High Priest kept Awake on the Night of Yom Ha-Kippurim? (Menahem H. Schmelzer)
Lieberman’s Guidance in Interpreting Biblical Verses (Meir Lubetski)
Saul Lieberman: The Greatest Sage in Israel (Meir Bar-Ilan)
Other Facets of Lieberman’s Persona – article in Hebrew (Israel M. Ta-Shma)
The Depth of Saul Lieberman’s Understanding (Shama Yehudah Friedman)
A Bibliography About Saul Lieberman: The Man and His Work (Elinor Grumet)
Indexes: Saul Lieberman’s Works; Classical Works; Biblical and Rabbinic Citations; Words and Phrases; Names and Authors

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