Rabbi Shlomo Kluger — The Dubno Maggid’s Adopted Son

Today, the 30th of Sivan, is the Yahrzeit of Rabbi Shlomo Kluger ztz”l, who may be regarded as the Dubno Maggid’s adopted son. Rabbi Shlomo Kluger was the son of Rabbi Yehudah Aharon Kluger of Komarov. When Rabbi Yehudah Aharon was stricken with an illness, he sought advice from doctors in the city of Zamosc, where the Dubno Maggid spent his last years. Rabbi Yehudah Aharon died suddenly in Zamosc, leaving his son Shlomo behind. The Maggid took Shlomo into his home and raised him like his own son.
Rabbi Shlomo Kluger was born in 1786. His father passed away in 1799, when Shlomo was 13 years old, and it was at this time that the Maggid took him in. After his marriage he engaged in business for a period of time, and then entered the rabbinate. He served as rabbi for a number of communities in Poland and Galicia. In 1820, at the age of 34, he moved to the city of Brody, where he served as the community halachic authority, chief of the Jewish law court, and sermonizer until his death in 1869 at the age of 83.
Rabbi Shlomo Kluger was one of the leading halachic authorities of his time. Halachic queries were sent to him even from distant provinces. He authored thousands of written halachic rulings (teshuvos) and over 100 books ranging over all areas of Torah. About 30 of his books were ultimately printed, including the following works:
1. HaEleph Lecha Shlomo: a book of approximately 1000 brief halachic rulings
2. Tuv Taam V’Daas: a commentary on Shulchan Aruch, Yoreh Deah
3. Chiddushei Anshei Sheim: a commentary on Shulchan Aruch, Even HaEzer
4. Chochmas Shlomo and Sefer HaChayim: novellae (chiddushim) on Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim
5. Mei Niddah: a work dealing with the halachic and conceptual aspects of the Jewish family purity laws
6. Shnot Chayim: a work containing responsa on Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim, and responsa and novellae for scribes
7. Sefer Stam: a work on laws for scribes
8. Sefer Avodas Avodah: novellae on meseches Avodah Zarah
9. Nidrei Zerizin:  novellae on meseches Nedarim
10. Maaseh Yedei Yotzer: a commentary on the Passover Haggadah
11. Imrei Shefer: a commentary on the Torah
The Maggid, in his commentary on Esther 2:5-7, discusses the kindness that Mordechai showed the orphaned Esther by taking her into his home, and the great salvation for the Jewish People that eventuated from this act. He examines a Gemara in Sukkah 49b that expounds on the following verse (Tehillim 103:17): “And kindness unto Hashem that lasts forever and ever is the province of those who fear Him.” The Maggid explains that if a person is pious and meticulous in fufilling all his mitzvah obligations, he will gain the extra merit of being able to perform a kindness that has a wide-ranging and everlasting effect. We can well say that the Maggid’s explanation applies to the Maggid himself: In the merit of his great piety, he gained the opportunity to raise an orphaned lad who grew up to become one of the greatest Torah giants of all time.
David Zucker, Site Administrator

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