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Rapaport, Rap(p)oport or Rapa Porto (Hebrew: רפפורט) is a family name
Family name
A family name is a type of surname and part of a person's name indicating the family to which the person belongs. The use of family names is widespread in cultures around the world...

 from an Italian
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

The Jews , also known as the Jewish people, are a nation and ethnoreligious group originating in the Israelites or Hebrews of the Ancient Near East. The Jewish ethnicity, nationality, and religion are strongly interrelated, as Judaism is the traditional faith of the Jewish nation...

) Kohen
A Kohen is the Hebrew word for priest. Jewish Kohens are traditionally believed and halachically required to be of direct patrilineal descent from the Biblical Aaron....

itic pedigree
Pedigree chart
A pedigree chart is a diagram that shows the occurrence and appearance or phenotypes of a particular gene or organism and its ancestors from one generation to the next, most commonly humans, show dogs, and race horses....

. It takes its origins in the Rapa family of Porto located in Province of Mantua
Province of Mantua
The Province of Mantua is a province in the Lombardy region of northern Italy. Its capital is the city of Mantua.-Communes:It includes 70 comuni , ranging in area from Viadana, with 102.19 km², to Mariana Mantovana, with 8.81 km²....

, Italy.

Earliest history

The names of Rapa or Rappe ha-Kohen(-Tzedeq (Rapa Katz) are met with in about 1450. At that time Meshullam Kusi (abbreviated from "Jekuthiel") Rapa ha-Kohen Tzedeq, the earliest known member of the family, lived on the Rhine, probably in Mainz
Mainz under the Holy Roman Empire, and previously was a Roman fort city which commanded the west bank of the Rhine and formed part of the northernmost frontier of the Roman Empire...

. Several decades later the family disappeared from Germany, probably on account of the Jews' expulsion from Mainz on October 29, 1462. In 1467, in Mestre
Mestre is a city part of the comune of Venice, in Veneto, northern Italy.The city is connected to Venice by a large rail and road bridge, called Ponte della Libertà ....

, near Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

, the wealthy Chayyim Rappe is found as alms' collector for the poor of the Holy Land
Holy Land
The Holy Land is a term which in Judaism refers to the Kingdom of Israel as defined in the Tanakh. For Jews, the Land's identifiction of being Holy is defined in Judaism by its differentiation from other lands by virtue of the practice of Judaism often possible only in the Land of Israel...

. In Venice, the physician R. Moses Rap was exempted in 1475 from wearing the Jew's badge
Yellow badge
The yellow badge , also referred to as a Jewish badge, was a cloth patch that Jews were ordered to sew on their outer garments in order to mark them as Jews in public. It is intended to be a badge of shame associated with antisemitism...


In the middle of the 16th century there appeared in Italy a Kohenitic family of the name of Porto. On March 18, 1540, R. Isaac Porto ha-Kohen obtained from the Duke of Mantua
Mantua is a city and comune in Lombardy, Italy and capital of the province of the same name. Mantua's historic power and influence under the Gonzaga family, made it one of the main artistic, cultural and notably musical hubs of Northern Italy and the country as a whole...

 permission to build an Ashkenazic
Ashkenazi Jews
Ashkenazi Jews, also known as Ashkenazic Jews or Ashkenazim , are the Jews descended from the medieval Jewish communities along the Rhine in Germany from Alsace in the south to the Rhineland in the north. Ashkenaz is the medieval Hebrew name for this region and thus for Germany...

A synagogue is a Jewish house of prayer. This use of the Greek term synagogue originates in the Septuagint where it sometimes translates the Hebrew word for assembly, kahal...

. The name of the family was not derived from the Portuguese
Portugal , officially the Portuguese Republic is a country situated in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. Portugal is the westernmost country of Europe, and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the West and South and by Spain to the North and East. The Atlantic archipelagos of the...

 city of Porto
Porto , also known as Oporto in English, is the second largest city in Portugal and one of the major urban areas in the Iberian Peninsula. Its administrative limits include a population of 237,559 inhabitants distributed within 15 civil parishes...

, nor from the Bavaria
Bavaria, formally the Free State of Bavaria is a state of Germany, located in the southeast of Germany. With an area of , it is the largest state by area, forming almost 20% of the total land area of Germany...

n city of Fürth
The city of Fürth is located in northern Bavaria, Germany in the administrative region of Middle Franconia. It is now contiguous with the larger city of Nuremberg, the centres of the two cities being only 7 km apart....

 as some authors have suggested, but instead from Porto, near Mantua, where the above-named Isaac Porto ha-Kohen lived. An alliance between the Rabe and Porto families explains the combination of the two family names in Rapoport; in 1565, officiating in the above-mentioned synagogue of Mantua, there is found a Rabbi Solomon ben Menahem ha-Kohen Rapa of Venice, while a Rabbi Abraham Porto ha-Kohen (1541–76) was parnas of the community.

During the same time period, a branch of the family settled in Prague
Prague is the capital and largest city of the Czech Republic. Situated in the north-west of the country on the Vltava river, the city is home to about 1.3 million people, while its metropolitan area is estimated to have a population of over 2.3 million...

 in central Europe, as evidenced by burials with the name Porta in 1589 and Port in 1598.

Eastern European branches

The Polish
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

 branch of the family explains its name through the following legend: one Easter
Easter is the central feast in the Christian liturgical year. According to the Canonical gospels, Jesus rose from the dead on the third day after his crucifixion. His resurrection is celebrated on Easter Day or Easter Sunday...

 a certain Jew, to prevent his enemies from smuggling the body of a Christian
A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, an Abrahamic, monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the Canonical gospels and the letters of the New Testament...

 child into his house, closed all possible entrances and openings except the chimney. Down the chimney however, the dreaded corpse fell, but when a crowd stormed the house nothing but a partridge (Old German
Old German
Old German usually refers to Old High German, but it could also refer to:*Old Low German *Altdeutsche Tracht , a dress style popular among early 19th century German radicals...

, "Rephuhn" or "Raphuhn") was found in the fireplace. But the "Von den Jungen Raben" (the house shield name of Judengasse "From the young crow (cf. raven)") in the signature
A signature is a handwritten depiction of someone's name, nickname, or even a simple "X" that a person writes on documents as a proof of identity and intent. The writer of a signature is a signatory. Similar to a handwritten signature, a signature work describes the work as readily identifying...

 of Abraham Menahem ha-Kohen Rapa von Port at the end of his Pentateuch commentary, and the additional fact that the coat of arms of the family bears a raven, clearly show that signifies "Rabe
-Surname:Rabe is a German surname meaning "raven" and may refer to:* David Rabe* Eckard Rabe* Folke Rabe* Jean Rabe* John Rabe, a German businessman in Nanjing during Japanese occupation; known for rescuing more than 200,000 Chinese from the Nanjing Massacre...

" (Middle High German, "Rappe"). The family name, therefore, at the end of the 16th century seems to be clearly established as Ha-Kohen Rabe. Part of the Polish branch changed their name into Wrona, which is Polish
Polish language
Polish is a language of the Lechitic subgroup of West Slavic languages, used throughout Poland and by Polish minorities in other countries...

 for crow. Another possibility is that these Wrona's originated from Verona
Verona ; German Bern, Dietrichsbern or Welschbern) is a city in the Veneto, northern Italy, with approx. 265,000 inhabitants and one of the seven chef-lieus of the region. It is the second largest city municipality in the region and the third of North-Eastern Italy. The metropolitan area of Verona...

 in Italy. The Yiddish (or Hebrew) transcription of Wrona and Verona are identical (waw resh waw nun he).

By the middle of the 17th century authors belonging to the Rapa-Port family were living in Poland and Lithuania
Lithuania , officially the Republic of Lithuania is a country in Northern Europe, the biggest of the three Baltic states. It is situated along the southeastern shore of the Baltic Sea, whereby to the west lie Sweden and Denmark...

, the name having meanwhile undergone the following modifications: Rapiport, Rapoport, Rapperport, and Rappert. The family spread principally from Cracow
Kraków also Krakow, or Cracow , is the second largest and one of the oldest cities in Poland. Situated on the Vistula River in the Lesser Poland region, the city dates back to the 7th century. Kraków has traditionally been one of the leading centres of Polish academic, cultural, and artistic life...

 and Lemberg
Lviv is a city in western Ukraine. The city is regarded as one of the main cultural centres of today's Ukraine and historically has also been a major Polish and Jewish cultural center, as Poles and Jews were the two main ethnicities of the city until the outbreak of World War II and the following...

 (Lviv); in the latter place, in 1584, was born the famous Talmud
The Talmud is a central text of mainstream Judaism. It takes the form of a record of rabbinic discussions pertaining to Jewish law, ethics, philosophy, customs and history....

ist Abraham Rapa von Port (called also Schrenzel). In 1650 Rapoports lived in Dubno
Dubno is a city located on the Ikva River in the Rivne Oblast of western Ukraine. Serving as the administrative center of Dubno Raion , the city itself is also designated as a separate raion within the oblast...

 and Krzemeniec; in the 18th century descendants of R. Judah Rapoport are found in Smyrna
Smyrna was an ancient city located at a central and strategic point on the Aegean coast of Anatolia. Thanks to its advantageous port conditions, its ease of defence and its good inland connections, Smyrna rose to prominence. The ancient city is located at two sites within modern İzmir, Turkey...

 and Jerusalem. About 1750 there were two Rapoports in Dyhernfurth (Silesia
Silesia is a historical region of Central Europe located mostly in Poland, with smaller parts also in the Czech Republic, and Germany.Silesia is rich in mineral and natural resources, and includes several important industrial areas. Silesia's largest city and historical capital is Wrocław...

) — one named Israel Moses and the other R. Meïr: the former came from Pińczów
Pińczów is a town in Poland, in Świętokrzyskie Voivodship, about 40 km south of Kielce. It is the capital of Pińczów County. Population is 12,304 .-History:...

, the latter from Krotoschin. Both found employment in the printing establishment at Dyhernfurth.

A notable scholar of this branch included R. Khaim haKohen Rapoport, who lived in Lviv and died there in 1771. He was one of the key "talmudists" involved in the Frankist
Jacob Frank
Jacob Frank was an 18th century Jewish religious leader who claimed to be the reincarnation of the self-proclaimed messiah Sabbatai Zevi and also of the biblical patriarch Jacob...

 debates set up by the Archbishop Dembowski in 1757. R. Khaim's descendants include the Rapoport-Bick dynasty
Rapoport-Bick (rabbinic dynasty)
The Rapoport-Bick dynasty was the most important of all the non-chasidic rabbinic dynasties of Medzhybizh, in Ukraine. The Rapoport dynasty traces its roots back to Rabbi Jacob Emden who was involved in the Frankist debates of 1757 and his father Rabbi Tsvi Hirsh Ashkenazi, known as the Chacham Tsvi...

. R. Khaim's pedigree is known from his personal and his descendants' writings. It is reconstructed here:
  • R Yakov Moshe Kohen Rapa (15th century)
  • R. Abraham Menakhem Kohen Rapa
  • R. Gershon Kohen Rapa (born 1538), Porto, Italy
  • R. Simcha Katz Rapa
  • R. Moses Jeremiah Katz Rapoport, rabbi in Vienna
    Vienna is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Austria and one of the nine states of Austria. Vienna is Austria's primary city, with a population of about 1.723 million , and is by far the largest city in Austria, as well as its cultural, economic, and political centre...

  • R. Meir haKohen Rapoport (d. 1600), rabbi in Belz
    Belz , a small city in the Lviv Oblast of Western Ukraine, near the border with Poland, is located between the Solokiya river and the Rzeczyca stream....

  • R. Nakhman Rapoport (d. 1674), rabbi in Kamenets-Podolsky, Poznań
    Poznań is a city on the Warta river in west-central Poland, with a population of 556,022 in June 2009. It is among the oldest cities in Poland, and was one of the most important centres in the early Polish state, whose first rulers were buried at Poznań's cathedral. It is sometimes claimed to be...

    , Dubno
  • R. Simkha haKohen Rapoport (d. 1717)
  • R. Khaim haKohen Rapoport (died 1771), head of the Jewish Court in Lviv
  • R. Arieh Lieb Rapoport (d. 1759), rabbi in Prezwork
  • R. Dov Berish Rapoport (d. 1823), rabbi in Medzhybizh
    Medzhybizh, previously known as Mezhybozhe, population 1731, is a town in the Khmelnytskyi Oblast of western Ukraine. It is located in the Letychivsky Raion , 25 kilometres from the Khmelnytskyi on the main highway between Khmelnytskyi and Vinnytsia at the confluence of the Southern Buh and...

    , married into the Emden
    Emden is a city and seaport in the northwest of Germany, on the river Ems. It is the main city of the region of East Frisia; in 2006, the city had a total population of 51,692.-History:...

  • Rapoport-Bick (rabbinic dynasty)

List of persons with the surname Rappaport

  • Andrew S. Rappaport
    Andrew S. Rappaport
    Andrew S. Rappaport or Andy Rappaport is an American Silicon Valley venture capitalist partner in August Capitalan information technology venture capital firm based in Menlo Park, California...

    , American Silicon Valley venture capitalist
  • Ben Rappaport
    Ben Rappaport
    Bennett Eli "Ben" Rappaport is an American actor. He played the role of Todd Dempsy in the NBC sitcom Outsourced, which aired during the 2010–2011 television season. The series marked Rappaport's debut acting role on screen....

    , American actor
  • David Rappaport
    David Rappaport
    David Stephen Rappaport was an English actor, probably one of the best known dwarf actors in television and film...

    , English actor
  • Edward Rappaport
    Edward Rappaport
    Edward N. "Ed" Rappaport, Ph.D. was the acting director of the National Hurricane Center. He replaced former director Bill Proenza on July 9, 2007. Rappaport was replaced by Bill Read...

    , acting director of the National Hurricane Center
  • Gerbert Rappaport, Austrian screenwriter and film director; often spelled Herbert Rappaport
  • Helen Rappaport
    Helen Rappaport
    Helen Rappaport is a British historian, author, and former actress. As a historian, she specialises in the Victorian era and revolutionary Russia.-Biography:...

    , English historian
  • Mark Rappaport
    Mark Rappaport
    Mark Rappaport is an American independent/underground film director who has been working sporadically since the early 1970s. A lifelong New Yorker, born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, he graduated from Brooklyn College in 1964...

    , American film director
  • Richard Rappaport
    Richard Rappaport
    Richard Rappaport, born 1944 in Pittsburgh, is a classically trained painter of portraits and large-scale figurative works whose pictorial evolution has spiraled towards and away from the Renaissance ideal for half a century....

    , American painter
  • Roy Rappaport
    Roy Rappaport
    Roy A. Rappaport was a distinguished anthropologist known for his contributions to the anthropological study of ritual and to ecological anthropology.-Biography:...

    , anthropologist
  • Solomon Anski, Yiddish writer (born Solomon Zangwill Rappaport, Rappoport)
  • Emil Stanisław Rappaport
    Emil Stanisław Rappaport
    - External links :* *...

    , Polish Supreme Court judge
    A judge is a person who presides over court proceedings, either alone or as part of a panel of judges. The powers, functions, method of appointment, discipline, and training of judges vary widely across different jurisdictions. The judge is supposed to conduct the trial impartially and in an open...

List of persons with the surname Rapaport

  • Alexandra Rapaport
    Alexandra Rapaport
    Alexandra Rapaport is a Swedish film and stage actress born in Bromma. She has studied at Teaterhögskolan i Stockholm from where she graduated in 1997.Her parents are from Poland.-Filmography :*Ellinors bröllop...

    , Swedish actress
  • David Rapaport, Hungarian psychologist
  • Martin Rapaport
    Martin Rapaport
    Martin Rapaport is an American entrepreneur and founder of the Rapaport Diamond Report. Rapaport is a maverick within the diamond industry, and is often recognized for his signature bow tie. He is a member of the board of Jewelers for Children and an early proponent of the Kimberley Process...

    , American entrepreneur
  • Michael Rapaport
    Michael Rapaport
    Michael David Rapaport is an American, actor, director and a comedian. He has acted in more than forty films since the early 1990s...

    , American actor and comedian
  • William J. Rapaport
    William J. Rapaport
    -Academics:Rapaport has done research and written extensively on Intentionality and Artificial Intelligence. He has research interests in Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence , Computational Linguistics, Cognitive Science, Logic and Mathematics, and published many scientific articles on...

    , associate professor, University at Buffalo

List of persons with the surname Rappoport

  • Jon Rappoport
    Jon Rappoport
    Jon Rappoport is an American journalist and author, currently living in San Diego, California with his wife, Dr. Laura Thompson, with whom he does much work advocating alternative medicine. He studied philosophy for four years at Amherst College in Massachusetts, graduating in 1960. He has...

     (born 1938), American journalist and author
  • Xenia Rappoport, actress

List of persons with the surname Rapoport

  • Aaron Rapoport
    Aaron Rapoport
    Aaron Rapoport is an American photographer, best known for his photographs of music artists.-Biography:In a career that spans over three decades, Rapoport has photographed in a wide variety of areas including commercial photography. His photography of album/CD covers is particularly well known...

    , American photographer
  • Abraham Rapoport
    Abraham Rapoport
    Abraham Rapoport was a Polish Talmudist; born at Lemberg in 1584; died in 1651 ; son of Rabbi Israel Jehiel Rapoport of Cracow and son-in-law of R. Mordecai Schrenzel of Lemberg. Rapoport was a pupil of R. Joshua Falk ha-Kohen.For forty-five years he was at the head of a large yeshiva at Lemberg...

     (Schrenzel), (1584–1651) Polish Talmudist
  • Amos Rapoport
    Amos Rapoport
    Amos Rapoport is the author of the book House, Form & Culture - which talks about how culture, human behavior, and the environment affect house form....

    , professor of Architecture
  • Anatol Rapoport
    Anatol Rapoport
    Anatol Rapoport was a Russian-born American Jewish mathematical psychologist. He contributed to general systems theory, mathematical biology and to the mathematical modeling of social interaction and stochastic models of contagion.-Biography:...

     (1911–2007), mathematical psychologist
  • Bernard Rapoport
    Bernard Rapoport
    Bernard Rapoport is an American entrepreneur, philanthropist, author, and is the founder of American Income Life Insurance Company. He has a passion for human rights, education, and literacy.-Background and Education:...

    , American entrepreneur and philanthropist
  • Chaim Rapoport
    Chaim Rapoport
    Rabbi Chaim Rapoport is an author, lecturer and Judaic scholar. He is a member of the UK’s Chief Rabbi Sir Jonathan Sacks’ cabinet where he holds the Jewish medical ethics portfolio. Rabbi Rapoport is a visiting professor at the Jewish Learning Exchange in London and Yeshivat Chovevei Torah...

  • David C. Rapoport
    David C. Rapoport
    David Charles Rapoport is UCLA Professor Emeritus of Political Science, and an expert in terrorism. He is the editor of the scholarly journal Terrorism and Political Violence.-Works:...

    , UCLA Professor Emeritus of Political Science
  • Eduardo H. Rapoport
    Eduardo H. Rapoport
    Eduardo Hugo Rapoport is an Argentinian ecologist and emeritus professor at Universidad Nacional del Comahue. His is widely known for his fundamental work on soil biology, biological invasions, urban ecology and, in particular, for his contributions to the biogeography .Eduardo Rapoport studied at...

    , Argentinian ecologist
  • Henry Rapoport
    Henry Rapoport
    Henry Rapoport was an internationally renowned organic chemist and Professor of Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley. He is widely recognized for his work in the development of the chemical synthesis of biologically important compounds and pharmaceuticals.Henry Rapoport obtained a...

    , American chemist
  • I. C. Rapoport
    I. C. Rapoport
    I.C. Rapoport is known both for his work as a photojournalist in the 1960s and more recently as a TV and film screenwriter...

  • Isaac ha-Kohen Rapoport
    Isaac ha-Kohen Rapoport
    Isaac ben Judah ha-Kohen Rapoport was an 18th-century rabbi who lived in Palestine; born and died at Jerusalem, a pupil of R. Hezekiah da Silva....

    , 18th century rabbi
  • Lev Pavlovich Rapoport
  • Michael Rapoport
    Michael Rapoport
    Michael Rapoport is a German mathematician. He currently holds a chair for arithmetic algebraic geometry at the University of Bonn...

    , a German mathematician
  • Nathan Rapoport
    Nathan Rapoport
    Nathan Rapoport , who is also known as Natan Rapoport, was a Jewish sculptor who was born in Warsaw, Poland. His middle name may be rendered in English as either Yaakov or Jacob. In 1936, he won a scholarship to study in France and Italy. He fled to the Soviet Union when the Nazis invaded Poland...

     (1911–1987), sculptor
  • Paul Rapoport
    Paul Rapoport
    Paul Israel Rapoport , an attorney, was a co-founder of both the New York City Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Services Center and Gay Men's Health Crisis...

    , American attorney
  • Paul Rapoport (music critic)
    Paul Rapoport (music critic)
    Paul Rapoport is a musicologist, music critic, and composer a professor at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario....

    , Canadian music critic
  • Samuel Mitja Rapoport
    Samuel Mitja Rapoport
    Samuel Mitja Rapoport was a prominent physician, biochemist, European Jewish émigré, and Communist who fled to East Germany from McCarthyite persecution in the United States.- Biography :Throughout his life Samuel Mitja Rapoport saw danger and exile...

     (1912–2004), physician, biochemist
  • Solomon Judah Loeb Rapoport (1790–1867), Galician rabbi and Jewish scholar
  • Sonya Rapoport
    Sonya Rapoport
    Sonya Rapoport is an American conceptual/digital artist and New media artist who has created computer-assisted interactive installations and participatory web-based artworks.-Early life:...

    , American artist
  • Tom Rapoport
    Tom Rapoport
    Tom Abraham Rapoport is a German-American cell biologist who studies protein transport in cells.He has been a professor at the Harvard Medical School since 1995, and an HHMI investigator since 1997...

    , cell biologist at Harvard Medical School
  • Vladimir Rapoport
    Vladimir Rapoport
    Vladimir Abramovich Rapoport was a Soviet cinematographer. Vladimir Rapoport received the Stalin Prize four times: in 1942, 1946, 1949, 1951 and the USSR State Prize in 1971.-Selected filmography:*Golden Mountains *Counterplan...

    , Soviet cinematographer