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How did Rash"i's commentary on the Torah become the primary (phrasing intentionally vague) commentary among the hundreds of others that have been written?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

Ramban refers to Rashi as "Lo Mishpat HaBechora" -- he has the rights of the firstborn. I think he's chronologically the first major commentary we have ... okay what about R' Saadiah Gaon ... I think R' Saadiah is more strictly translating words? Or is it that they didn't have R' Saadiah Gaon's commentary in Europe?

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That was Ramba"n. – WAF Oct 20 '10 at 20:19
Rav Saadiah gaon's commentary was not universally accessible- it was in Arabic. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saadia_Gaon#Works – Yahu Oct 31 '10 at 19:28
Yahu, you got it. Thanks! – Shalom Nov 1 '10 at 12:43
You are most welcome - I am sure you would have figured it out yourself knowing your record on m.y.! – Yahu Nov 3 '10 at 6:54

Simply due to its clarity - short and to the point + covering almost everything

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