Israel Francus (z”l)

Judge Abraham Lieberman Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus of Talmudic Exegesis


BS, Columbia University; BRE, MHL, and Rabbinical Ordination, The Jewish Theological Seminary; MA, Teachers College, Columbia University; PhD, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Israel Francus is Judge Abraham Lieberman Distinguished Service Professor of Talmudic Exegesis of The Jewish Theological Seminary. A native of Poland, Dr. Francus received a bachelor’s degree in 1956 and a master’s degree in 1958 from Columbia University. He also received a bachelor’s degree in 1956, a master’s degree in 1962, and rabbinic ordination from JTS, in addition to receiving a doctorate from Hebrew University in 1962. Dr. Francus has been an active member of the JTS community for more than forty years, and he was one of the first two graduates of JTS’s Joint Program with Columbia University.

In 1967, he published The Commentary of Rabbi Elazar Azikri (1553–1600) to the Tractate Bezah in the Jerusalem Talmud, with extensive notes and a lengthy preface that includes an analysis of all the parallel sugyot in the Babylonian and Jerusalem Talmud of the tractate Bezah. A second edition was published in 1995, with additional notes. Dr. Francus has also had over forty articles published in Israeli journals, such as TarbitzSinaiHamishpat HaivriDinei Yisrael, and Bar-Ilan Annual. His most recent article, which will be published in Sinai, is titled “Elucidating a Sugya and Determining a Correct Reading.”