"They enjoyed the scent of his clothes blessed by his forefathers": The encounter of Rabbi Jacob Saphir with the Holy 'Sayeed' in Yemen

Abraham Ofir Shemesh


Although body odor is a completely natural feature, smells emanating from the human body or clothes have been perceived throughout history as a manifestation of one's spiritual world and moral identity. The current study discusses the encounter of Rabbi Jacob Saphir (1822-1886), a famous Jewish traveler, with honorable Muslim. During the event the followers of the holy man do not touch him but smell the special scent of his clothes. The unusual event illustrating the social significance of the odor emitted by distinguished figure's body or clothes among Muslims. It also demonstrates a new insight of Saphir concerning the meaning of body odors in Jewish scriptures.


Jacob Saphir. Body. Odors. Moral.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17851/1982-3053.13.25.189-198


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© Copyright 2007 Arquivo Maaravi: Revista Digital de Estudos Judaicos da UFMG - ISSN: 1982-3053.

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