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Biographies In Brief

Brief biographies of some of our nation's greatest leaders.

1565-1446 BCE
From Prisoner to Prince
Joseph was sold by his brothers to Egypt, where he ultimately became ruler of the land, second only to King Pharaoh.
Moses: The Man of G-d
The greatest prophet who ever lived, Moses transcribed the Torah (also known as the Five Books of Moses), the foundational text of Judaism.
Maimonides: His Life and Works
Rabbi Moses ben Maimon, 1135-1204 ("Rambam")
Rabbi Moses ben Maimon, Talmudist, Halachist, physician, philosopher and communal leader, known in the Jewish world by the acronym "Rambam" and to the world at large as "Maimonides."
? - 139 BCE
Rabbi Asher ben Yechiel, 1250?-1327
"The Ramak"
"I shall soon leave this world," said the great master. "The one who will take my place will say things that may seem to contradict what I have taught you, but do not oppose him, for his teachings stem from the same source as mine"
The Alter Rebbe
Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi (1745–1812)
The life, teachings and works of Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, founder of Chabad.
Rabbi DovBer of Lubavitch
A brief biography of the second Chabad Rebbe.
The Ben Ish Chai
Chacham Yosef Chaim of Baghdad
Chacham Yosef Chaim understood that cut-and-dry Torah law would not appeal to many, so the bulk of his discourses were coupled with Kabbalah and Aggadah. He helped his followers make associations between Biblical lore and the law, so their hearts would be drawn to the wisdom of Torah...
Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn
Sixth Rebbe of Chabad-Lubavitch
Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn, the sixth rebbe of Chabad-Lubavitch, was one of the most remarkable Jewish personalities of the twentieth century.
The Story of Adam and Eve in the Bible
Adam and Eve were the first humans, created by G‑d on the sixth day of Creation and ancestors to all of mankind.
Ishmael: Abraham's Other Son
Abraham had two sons, Isaac and Ishmael, yet it was Isaac who was chosen to carry on Abraham’s legacy. Why?
Everything About Enosh
There is very little mention of him in the Torah, and most of what we know about him and his times is from Midrashic and Talmudic sources.
The Life and Times of Nimrod, the Biblical Hunter
Before you go calling me names, it’s only fair that you familiarize yourself with all the details . . .
Memoirs of Og, the Not-So-Gentle Giant
I have undertaken to commit my life experiences to writing, so that my place in history is not forgotten.
Daniel the Prophet of the Bible, His Life and Accomplishments
Daniel (3304-3399 / 457-362 BCE) was a celebrated Jewish scholar and master interpreter of dreams who was exiled to Babylon after the destruction of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.
Esau's Autobiography
A cautionary tale of violence and villainy
Diary of Leah
This is not the actual diary of Leah, wife of Jacob. To the best of my knowledge, no such document exists.
Nachshon ben Aminadav: The Man Who Jumped Into the Sea
When everyone else hesitated, he jumped into the swirling sea.
Who Was Jethro? Father-in-Law of Moses
As Described in the Bible, Midrash and Talmud
Jethro (or Yitro or Yisro) was a Midianite priest and the father-in-law of Moses. He is mentioned three times in the Pentateuch, once in the Prophets and in numerous places in rabbinic literature. Let us learn what we can about this fascinating figure.
The Dynamic Duo: Betzalel and Aholiav
The artisans who made the Mishkan and its equipment
Only when Betzalel and Aholiav work in unity can we forge a connection with G-d.
Korah: The Rebel of the Bible
Korah takes a stance against Moses and Aaron, which ultimately led to his downfall.
Five Sisters: The Story of Tzelafchad's Daughters
“Why should our father’s name be eliminated from his family because he had no sons? Give us a landholding among our father’s brothers!”
Isaac is the second of the patriarchs of the Jewish people. He is most famous for his central role when he was almost offered up as a sacrifice to G‑d
Balaam and Balak: The Full Story
The fascinating story of Balak and Balaam’s failed attempts to curse the Jewish people, in which a talking donkey and a sword-wielding angel also take starring roles.
King Solomon: The Story of His Reign and Kingdom
King Solomon was the third king of Israel, who ruled Israel for 40 years and, while ushering peace and properity in his era, built the First Holy Temple.
Sir Moses Montefiore
Sir Moses Who . . . ?
The Jewish world is scattered with institutions all named after Sir Moses Montefiore—and yet, how many Jews now know who he was?
Rebecca of the Bible
The sages likened her stalwart ability to rise above her environment to a rose growing among thorns
Aaron of the Bible
Aaron personified kindness. His life’s work was the endless and vigorous promotion of peace.
The Prophet Ezekiel
Ezekiel spent the bulk of his life in Babylonia, where he envisioned most of his prophecies.
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