Questions related to how something was in the past, and how it's developed since then.

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5
votes
1answer
773 views

Yerushalmi Versus Bavli

What are the differences between the two Talmuds? or are there differences? Why did the two Talmuds develop separately or did they? Why do we Poskin like the Bavli or do we? Is it true that the ...
9
votes
1answer
272 views

Teffilin and women

Rashi's daughters are popularly described as having worn Teffilin, but apparently there is no such source, just a popular urban legend in Jewish circles. Are there any women described in Rabbinic ...
11
votes
2answers
729 views

Origins of איל משולש and Vilna Ga'on's bathroom math

There is a well-known fact that the Vilna Ga'on studied math while in the bathroom since Torah was out of the question in an unclean place. It is also somewhat well-known that he produced the material ...
4
votes
2answers
231 views

Motivation for disallowing Conversions

What was The Syrians communities Rabbis motivation For disallowing conversions and when did it happen and did any other Sephardi communities join in this decision later on?
3
votes
1answer
203 views

Intermarriage among Middle eastern Jews right before 1948

I was wondering does anyone know where I can find out the Intermarriage rate among Middle eastern Jews right before 1948 particularly amongst the Iraqis and the Syrians?
6
votes
2answers
205 views

Jewish Community in China Around WW2

I was recently at a lecture given by Professor Xu Xin of Nanjing University in China. The topic of the lecture was "The Jewish Diaspora in Modern China". Professor Xin covered the brief but ...
4
votes
3answers
161 views

Tannis Esther reason

Why do we fast on Tannis Esther? In memory of what historical occurrence?
2
votes
1answer
95 views

When was the first Mikva built in the USA?

When was the first Mikva built in the USA?
9
votes
2answers
430 views

Non-Lubavitch views of the Maggid of Mezrich's relationship with R' Shneur Zalman of Liadi?

As far as I know, all chasiduses agree that the Maggid of Mezrich was the primary student of the Baal Shem Tov. But I was listening to an online shiur about Chabad (Lubavitch) history, which conveyed ...
10
votes
5answers
313 views

Why did Esther make two parties; why not just one?

What was the purpose of the two parties that Esther made for Haman and Achashverosh (Esther 5:4–8 and chapter 7), if one could have done the job? In other words, what happened that she needed a ...
7
votes
1answer
233 views

Sefer Besamim Rosh

Who wrote the Sefer Besamim Rosh?
8
votes
3answers
262 views

Meforshim Nick"names

It has become common practice to refer to most meforshim by acronyms of their name (eg Rashi, Rosh, etc.). When and why did this practice start, and is it proper?
5
votes
1answer
371 views

Did Rabbis Moshe Feinstein and Shlomo Zalman Auerbach ever meet in person? How many times? [closed]

Rav Moshe was in America, Rav Shlomo Zalman in Israel. Did they ever meet? Where and when? Do we have a photo of both of them together? (I know Rav Shlomo Zalman was asked to speak at Rav Moshe's ...
3
votes
1answer
80 views

Napoleon Beis Din [closed]

Can somone provide some background for this like who was on it and what the Beis Din addressed and what was Napoleons motivation for it and what was the Jewish response?
4
votes
1answer
158 views

What happened to the Aseres HaShevatim?

What happened to the Aseres HaShevatim? Where are they now? Are they in 10 different locations? Do they still know they are Jewish?
6
votes
3answers
882 views

Reb Moshe Feinstein in the New York Times

Reb Moshe Feinstein was once interviewed by the New York Times where he answered questions like how does Klal Yisroel know who is a Gadol? Does anyone know when it was, and does anyone know where I ...
2
votes
4answers
171 views

When and What was the first Hebrew Sefer published?

When and What was the first Hebrew Sefer that was mass published?
1
vote
2answers
76 views

When was the Shulchan Aruch HaArizal first published?

On HebrewBooks.org they have this edition. Is there any previous edition and when? מקום דפוס ווילנא שנת דפוס תרמא Pub. Place Vilna Pub. Date 1881 Pages דפים 95
1
vote
2answers
156 views

yushkas bris aniversary [closed]

Is it true that new years is the aniversary of yushka's bris
6
votes
3answers
180 views

Biography on Rav Hirsch

Anyone know of any good (i.e. non-hagiographical) biographies on Rav Samson Rafael Hirsch zt"l?
10
votes
2answers
377 views

Why is Hebrew Called “Jewish” in the Bible?

We see that in most of the Bible, the Jews are called "בני ישראל/Israelites"; only in later books are they called "יהודים/Jews" (e.g. Esther 2:5, Zechariah 8:23), after the loss of the 10 tribes. ...
4
votes
2answers
164 views

Who was the first ordained rabbi to live in the USA?

Who was the first ordained rabbi to live in the USA? What was his position?
8
votes
1answer
431 views

Whose semicha (ordination) was the last one signed/granted by Rabbi Joseph Dov Soloveichik? By Rabbi Moshe Feinstein?

Whose semicha (ordination) was the last one signed/granted by Rabbi Joseph Dov Soloveichik? What about by Rabbi Moshe Feinstein? (The answer may be "the yeshiva ABC class of 1981" or whatever.)
6
votes
1answer
103 views

Tu B'Shvat Significance

What is the significance of Tu B'Shvat? How was it celebrated through history, and was it celebrated through history? What are the Halachic torah sources for Celebrating it? Why the recent ...
4
votes
2answers
141 views

Gezeira of Rabbeinu Gershom History

Has the original text of the Gazeira of Rabbeinu Gershom been lost. If so when? Who are the earliest sources stating such?
16
votes
5answers
906 views

Gezeira of Rabbeinu Gershom text

Does anyone know where I can find the actual text of the Gezeira of Rabbeinu Gershom? It keeps popping up in my learning, but only as being referenced, I would like to read that actual text.
14
votes
2answers
378 views

What does “the Talmud” mean in the Talmud?

The G'mara Bavli says in Shabas 63: אמר רב כהנא, "כד הוינא בר תמני סרי שנין, והוה גמירנא ליה לכוליה תלמודא, ולא הוה ידענא דאין מקרא יוצא מידי פשוטו..." Rav Kahana said, "When I was 18 years ...
0
votes
1answer
37 views

History of 16 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
9
votes
3answers
221 views

Under whom did these Rabbis study?

In an effort to trace back Rabbi-to-student transmission of tradition, I've run into some dead ends, and I'm hoping the community can offer some leads. Under whom did the following Rabbis study? ...
0
votes
2answers
40 views

History of 15 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

History of 14 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
0
votes
1answer
42 views

History of 13 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

History of 12 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
1
vote
1answer
38 views

History of 11 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
0
votes
2answers
59 views

History of 10 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
8
votes
2answers
150 views

How did the Sages know that Jerusalem had a wall in the times of Joshua?

The criterion for whether a city celebrates Purim on 14 Adar or Shushan Purim on 15 Adar is whether it was walled in the times of Joshua (about 3300 years ago). (Well, Shushan itself is an exception, ...
1
vote
3answers
83 views

History of 9 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
0
votes
2answers
64 views

History of 8 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
0
votes
1answer
39 views

History of 7 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
3
votes
1answer
212 views

Source for reciting all of T'hilim (Psalms)

There is a contemporary practice of splitting up Sefer T'hilim for on-the-spot recitation of the entire book by a room (real or virtual) full of people. What is the earliest documented source for this ...
0
votes
3answers
62 views

History of 6 Teveis

**Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known personalities ...
0
votes
3answers
57 views

History of 5 Teveis

New Series **Looking for answers as to what happened in Jewish history on this date. It can include both positive and negative occurrences. It can also include birthdays or Yarzheits of well known ...
3
votes
3answers
98 views

Where was the Kodesh haKodoshim?

I have always been under the impression that the mosque on the Har HaBayis is on the location of the Kosdesh HaKodoshim. Is that accurate?
2
votes
1answer
46 views

Significance of 4 Teveis in Judaism

Is the 4th day of the Month of Teveis significant in Judaism? Looking for answers as to what characteristics (historical, numerological or otherwise) that is commemorated by or significant to Judaism ...
1
vote
3answers
104 views

Significance of 3 Teveis in Judaism

Is the 3nd day of the Month of Teveis significant in Judaism? Looking for answers as to what characteristics (historical, numerological or otherwise) that is commemorated by or significant to Judaism ...
3
votes
4answers
144 views

Significance of 2 Teveis in Judaism

Is the 2nd day of the Month of Teveis significant in Judaism? Looking for answers as to what characteristics (historical, numerological or otherwise) that is commemorated by or significant to Judaism ...
10
votes
2answers
194 views

“m'nora” on Chanuka

My kid came home from school one day insisting that the thing we light on Chanuka is not a m'nora but a chanukiya. I replied that that's the word most Israelis use now but that m'nora is a perfectly ...
5
votes
4answers
143 views

On the horn of an ox

What is the significance of the horn of an Ox that the Greeks made the Jews write (Midrash Rabbah 2:5 and other places) We have no Part in the God of Israel on it (even thought in his Epistle to Yemen ...
5
votes
2answers
151 views

What took 8 days

What took the Jews 8 days to produce new oil when rededicating the Temple in the Chanuka story? It seems the process of oil-making takes a lot less time (I have done it in Israel on one of the tourist ...
13
votes
7answers
243 views

Zmanim accuracy before digital clocks?

How was time measured for the purpose of Zmanim before we had accurate clocks like we do today? Was it possible to accurately determine Chatzos (at night) or the different watches of the night? I know ...