Author: Rabbi Yosef Tumarkin
Format: 7" x 10" Hardcover, 280 pages
Compilation of Halachic responsa by Rabbi Yosef Tumarkin of Kremenchug, close disciple of Rabbi Menachem Mendel, third Lubavitcher Rebbe, the Tzemach Tzedek, and halachic authority in his court. With an elaborate biographical introduction, annotations and indices.
Edited by Rabbis Mendel Nachshon and Levi Holtzman.
Rabbi Yosef Tumarkin (5579-5634), the Rov of Kremenchug, was a prominent Rov and renowned posek in his time, he has been largely forgotten because most of his writings didn’t survive and reach print. The new sefer Shu”t Mahari Tumarkin, published by Kehos, is an attempt to turn the wheel of fortune and grant this great Rov some of the recognition he deserves.
Already at a young age, R. Yosef was considered one of the most prominent Chabad Rabbonim, and a member of the select circle of Rabbonim whose opinions the Tzemach Tzedek solicited on some of the halachic questions sent to him. The Tzemach Tzedek’s high regard for R. Yosef is reflected in the fact that he sent him manuscripts of his teshuvos to review and comment on.
After the passing of the Tzemach Tzedek, R. Yosef played a key role in the Rebbe Maharash’s assumption of the nesius in Lubavitch.
R. Yosef’s fame as a posek spread widely in his lifetime, and many of the Rabbonim of his time consulted with him on halachic matters. Eulogies published after his passing mention that his children possessed volumes of his teshuvos in manuscript form and were preparing them for print. Unfortunately, these teshuvos were never published and were eventually lost.
Shu”t Mahari Tumarkin is a very well-produced book combining biographical material and halachah. Students of Chabad history—and the many descendants of the broader Tumarkin family—will find the biographical introduction of great interest, and those interested in the specialized topics of the teshuvos will find them a pleasure to learn, thanks to the thorough editorial work.