Take the 2-minute tour ×
Mi Yodeya is a question and answer site for those who base their lives on Jewish law and tradition and anyone interested in learning more. It's 100% free, no registration required.

In Esther 9:7,9 there are letters in the names of Haman's sons which are written smaller than usual in the megillah. Barring the purimfest 1946 explanation, what is the reason for these letters being written this way?

share|improve this question
    
Somewhat related to judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/9510/… –  Danny Schoemann Mar 16 at 11:43
1  
+1 I am really curious to hear an alternative explanation to the Purim Fest 1946 one. The coincidence is almost too incredible to be true. –  Imray Mar 30 at 12:36

1 Answer 1

I discovered that the מגילת אסתר of the תורה שלֵמה has some answers:


For פרמשתא, citing מדרש רבי עקיבא בן יוסף על אותיות קטנות:‎

פרמשתא, ש׳ ת׳ של פרמשתא קטנה, הסר פ׳ ור׳ וישאר שמתא.‏

This one is hard to translate and explain. So I'll leave it as is.


For ויזתא:

  • The Gemara in Megila (16b) says in the name of Rav Yochanan - the Vav of ויזתא needs to be stretched out vertically to represent the fact that all 10 sons were hung on one tree - one on top of the other.

אמר רבי יוחנן וי"ו דויזתא צריך למימתחה בזקיפא כמורדיא דלברות מאי טעמא כולהו בחד זקיפא אזדקיפו

  • The מדרש רבי עקיבא בן יוסף על אותיות קטנות says that the Vav is large because they were all hung in one breath.

ויזתא, ו' דויזתא במגילה גדולה, לפי שכולם נתלו במשימה אחת.‏

  • The מדרש רבי עקיבא בן יוסף על אותיות קטנות says that the small Zayin in ויזתא is to hint to the seven things that Haman lied to the king about the Jews:

ויזתא, ז' קטנה, לפי שהמן הלשין מז' דברים,‏

ישנו עם אחד - א'‏

מפוזר - ב'‏

מפורג - ג'‏

בכל מדינות מלכותך - ד'‏

ודתיהם שונות מבל עם - ה'‏

ואת דתי המלך - ו'‏

ולמלך אין שוה להניחם - ז'.‏

share|improve this answer
    
Apologies for the terse format; I didn't want to lose the info and have no time to flesh it out today. –  Danny Schoemann Mar 27 at 9:45
1  
Anyone who has time (especially Danny Schoemann), can you please change the images to block quotations so people with screen readers can see it, so people needn't download images, and so search engines can see the text? –  msh210 Mar 27 at 17:47
1  
Thanks, @msh210! I did the next one; one more to go. –  Danny Schoemann Mar 30 at 10:07

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.