Monday, 27 June 2011
Rabbi Eliyahu related that when he arrived at Lod Airport with the other rabbis, he met with the agency representative who had brought the bones of the Chidain a small wooden coffin. When the Rav saw it, he was appalled “What is this?” he asked. “The bones of the Chida are rolling around in a miniature coffin? How can such a thing be?”
Rabbi Chaim-Yosef-David Azulai (circa 5484-5566; 1724-1806), better known as the "CHIDA," which are the initials of his name, is a highly respected Halachist, Kabbalist, historian and bibliographer. Born in Jerusalem, his teachers included Rav Shalom Sharabi [the Rashash], and Rav Chaim ben-Atar (the Ohr HaChaim). Eventually he wrote and published 71 works! His Shem HaGedolim" is one of the most important source books of Jewish literature and history. Several times he traveled abroad for periods of over five years each, usually as an emissary of the communities of the Holy Land, and once to serve as the Rav of Cairo. He lived the last third of his life in Livorno (Leghorn), Italy, where he wrote most of his major works and where he passed away at age 82 and was buried.