The importance of the Geonim in Jewish history is due, in the first place, to the fact that for a number of centuries they occupied a unique position as the heads of their respective schools and as the recognized authorities of Judaism. Their influence probably extended chiefly to the Mohammedan countries, especially northern Africa and Spain; but in the course of time the Jews of Christian. Europe also came under the influence of the Babylonian schools. It was for this reason that the Babylonian Talmud came to be recognized as the basis for religio-legal decisions throughout Jewry and as the principal object of study. Even the facilities offered for such study to the Diaspora were due to the Geonim, since the geonic exposition of the Talmud, with regard to both text and contents, was directly or indirectly the chief aid in comprehending the Talmud. The importance of the period of the Geonim for the history of Judaism is further enhanced by the fact that the new Jewish science, which steadily developed side by side with Talmudic studies, was created by a gaon, and that the same gaon, Saadia, effectively opposed the disintegrating influences of Karaism. The activity of the Geonim may be seen most clearly in their responsa, in which they appear as the teachers of the entire Diaspora, covering in their religio-legal decisions a wide field of instruction. The Geonim officiated, in the first place, as directors of the academies, continuing as such the educational activity of the Amoraim and Saboraim. For while the Amoraim, through their interpretation of the Mishnah, gave rise to the Talmud, and while the Saboraim definitively edited it, the Geonim's task was to interpret it; for them it became the subject of study and instruction, and they gave religio-legal decisions in agreement with its teachings.
על-פי שו"ת הגאונים, שאלוניקי תקס"ב, בתוספת (ספירה ראשונה): "הערות ופירוש מאת ... מו"ה דוד לוריא", מתוך ספרו קדמות ספר הזוהר, [קניגסברג תרט"ז], עיין: לוריא, דוד בן יהודה.