||First edition of Eder ha-Yakar edited and arranged by R. Abraham Isaac Kook, first Ashkenazi chief rabbi of modern Erez Israel. R. Kook writes about his father-in-law, R. Elijah David ben Benjamin Rabinowitz-Teomim, chief rabbi of Jerusalem, describing his personality, quoting his testament, which shows the latter’s extraordinary humility and modesty. Eder ha-Yakar includes a number of R. Rabinowitz-Teomim’s letters.
R. Elijah David Ben Benjamin Rabinowitz-Teomim, (Aderet, 1842/43–1905), Ashkenazi chief rabbi of Jerusalem was born in Pikeln, Lithuania. As he was a twin, his brother being Zevi Judah, the name Teomim (twins) was added to the family surname. R. Rabinowitz-Teomim was known from his youth as an unusual genius and in 1874 was chosen rabbi of the community of Ponevezh and in 1893 was appointed rabbi of Mir. In Mir he wrote no less than a hundred works, especially notes and glosses to the Talmud, Maimonides' Mishneh Torah, the Tur of Jacob b. Asher, the Shulhan Arukh, and responsa. His novellae and glosses on the Jerusalem Talmud, entitled Tuv Yerushalayim, appeared in the Romm-Vilna edition (1922) and those on the Tur Hoshen Mishpat entitled Et Devar ha-Mishpat in the El ha-Mekorot (1959) edition of the Turim. His extraordinary erudition is discernible in his novellae and notes, and his great knowledge of historical matters from his correspondence on these subjects with R. Jacob Reifmann, R. Isaac Hirsch Weiss. and others. In 1901, at the recommendation of R. Hayyim Ozer Grodzinski of Vilna, R. Rabinowitz-Teomim was officially appointed to succeed R. Samuel Salant as chief rabbi of Jerusalem.
Ikvei ha-Zon, discourses and homilies by R. Abraham Isaac Kook (1865–1935). R. Kook rabbinical authorit, mystic, and philosopher, was born in Greiva (now Griva), Latvia. At a very early age R. Kook showed independence of mind and far-reaching curiosity. While a student in the yeshiva in Volozhin he supplemented his traditional Talmudic education with the study of the Bible, Hebrew language, Jewish and general philosophy, and mysticism. In 1888 he was appointed rabbi of Zaumel, and in 1895 became rabbi of Bausk (now Bauska). In 1904 he immigrated to Erez Israel, where he served as rabbi of Jaffa, chief rabbi of Jerusalem, and with the formation of the chief rabbinate in 1921, as Ashkenazi chief rabbi of Palestine. R. Kook held that the return to Erez Israel marked the beginning of divine redemption (athalta di-ge'ullah). In R. Kook's system the mystical urge for unity is meant to combine the communicable with the ineffable—to infuse the physical life of man with a religious purpose. There is no stress on self-abnegation in his mysticism.