JOSEPH (Josse) BAR NISSAN, early liturgical poet of uncertain date. His birthplace appears repeatedly in the acrostic to his poems as Shaveh-Kiriathaim (Gen. 14:5). As in the case of Kiriath-Sepher, similarly used by Kallir, this is obviously intended as the designation of an actual but differently named town: Samuel Klein identified it with Nawe in Transjordan. Joseph's kerovot, preserved in numerous genizah fragments in Oxford, Cambridge, and elsewhere, were composed according to the triennial Palestinian cycle (see Torah, Reading of\>\> ). For this reason, among many others, he cannot be identified with the Babylonian poet Joseph al-Baradani who wrote poems in conformity with the one-year cycle. Joseph's poems are written in a highly involved style. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: I. Davidson, Ginzei Schechter, 3 (1928), 49, 96; M. Zulay, Zur Liturgie der babylonischen Juden (1933), 68, 87; idem, in: YMḤSI, 2 (1936), 219, 365; 5 (1939), 158–69; Klein, in: BJPES (1936), pt. 3, 4, 76–78; A.M. Habermann, Ateret Renanim (1967), 133, 163–5. ADD. BIBLIOGRAPHY: T. Beeri, The "Great Cantor" of Bagdad (Heb., 2002). (Jefim (Hayyim) Schirmann)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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