Literally "the first," or "the former," this term refers to the leading rabbis who lived approximately from 1000 to 1500, before the writing of the Shulkhan Arukh. Return to Table of Contents
"the First"; to be viewed in conjunction with allusions to "the Last" and resonating with New Testament parodies of both; in CD, i.4ff and iv.9, specifically denoting the Zaddikim of old (or "the Forefathers") with whom God made "the First Covenant".
The period of the Rishonim, "the early Sages", starts from about the 11th century C.E. and extends to the 15th century. Among the most famous of the Rishonim are: Rashi, Maimonides, and Nachmanides. Ohr Somayach International www.ohr.edu