Akiba a learned Jewish rabbi of the second century. He was president of the seminary at Bene Berak (Jos 19:45), near Jamnia. As a teacher he wielded great influence, especially in developing and diffusing the Talmudic learning and the Cabbala. Among his scholars were Rabbi Meir, one of the originators of the Mishna, and Rabbi S. ben-Jochai, author of the Cabbalistic work Zohar. He is said to have joined the rebel Barchochebas, and to have been taken and flayed by the Romans in his 120th year. See Jost, Geschichte d. Israeliten, p. 252; Furst, Bib. Jud.1.

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