Haim Palachi

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Tomb of Rabbi Chaim Palagi in İzmir, Turkey.

Haim Palachi, also spelt Palaggi, (Acronym: MaHaRHaF or HaVIF) (1788, Smyrna, Turkey – 1869, Smyrna) was a Turkish author and rabbi.


Maternal grandson of Joseph ben Hayyim Hazan, author of Hiqre Leb; pupil of Isaac Gategno, author of Bet Yiṣḥaq. After serving as president of the tribunal in his native city, he was appointed Hakham Bashi there in 1854.

His declining years were saddened by his deposition, although he was re-instated and held the position until the year before his death, and by disturbances among the people. He was greatly venerated by the masses, and at his funeral the hearse was escorted by a battalion of troops, an honor given by the Turkish authorities to only two or three chief rabbis.


Palachi was a prolific writer. Not counting twenty-six manuscripts which were lost in a fire, and a large number which are unpublished, he produced twenty-six works, most of them containing in their titles his name, "Hayyim". They are as follows:

  • "Darche Hayyim 'al Pirke Abot" (Smyrna, 1821), commentary on Pirke Avot;
  • "Leb Hayyim" (vol. i, Salonica, 1823; ii.-iii., Smyrna, 1874-90), responsa and comments on the Shulchan Aruch;
  • "De-Rahamim le-Hayyim";
  • "Hayyim ba-Yad", halachic responsa;
  • "Semichah le-Hayyim" (Salonica, 1826);
  • "Nishmat Kol Hai" (2 vols., ib. 1832-37), responsa;
  • "Tsedakah Hayyim" (Smyrna, 1838);
  • "Hikeke Leb" (2 vols., Salonica, 1840–49), responsa;
  • "Tochahat Hayyim" (2 vols., ib. 1840-53), moral counsel and sermons;
  • "'Ateret Hayyim";
  • "Yimmatse le-Hayyim", prayers for different needs;
  • "Nefesh Hayyim" (ib. 1842);
  • "Torah ve-Hayyim";
  • "Hayyim Tehillah";
  • treatises on various subjects, and a eulogy of Sir Moses Montefiore, with an appendix, "Derachav le-Mosheh", about the Damascus affair (ib. 1845);
  • "Hayyim Derachav" (ib. 1850);
  • "Hayyim la-Roshe";
  • "Kaf ha-Hayyim", halachic rulings and morals;
  • "Mo'ed le-Kol Hai", laws of the festivals;
  • "Re'e Hayyim" (3 vols., ib. 1860);
  • "Hayyim ve-Shalom" (Smyrna, 1862);
  • "Katub le-Hayyim";
  • "Sippur Hayyim";
  • "Birkat Mordekai le-Hayyim" (ib. 1868);
  • "Sefer Hayyim" (Salonica, 1868);
  • "Ginze Hayyim" (Smyrna, 1872).

Works since printed from manuscript

  • "Refuat Hayyim", spiritual remedies for diseases;
  • "Yismach Hayyim", on the significance of names;
  • "Hayyim be-Yad", responsa.


  • Franco, Histoire des Israélites de l'Empire Ottoman, pp. 198–202, 245;
  • Hazan, Solomon, Ha-Ma'alot li-Shelomoh, s.v.