The weekly Torah portion of Miketz (Genesis 41:1-44:17)

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Who was Poti-phera?

Gen 41:45 says: And Pharaoh called Joseph's name Zaphenath-paneah; and he gave him to wife Asenath the daughter of Poti-phera priest of On. [...] Rashi, citing Sotah 13b, says that Poti-phera is ...
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Magicians' Inability to Interpet Pharaoh's Dreams

The Posuk says (Genesis 41:3): וְהִנֵּה שֶׁבַע פָּרוֹת אֲחֵרוֹת עֹלוֹת אַחֲרֵיהֶן מִן הַיְאֹר רָעוֹת מַרְאֶה וְדַקּוֹת בָּשָׂר וַתַּעֲמֹדְנָה אֵצֶל הַפָּרוֹת עַל שְׂפַת הַיְאֹר Translated as: ...
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What is the dot in this vav?

What is this dot in the word יִוָּדַ֤ע in Mikeitz 41 31. וְלֹֽא־יִוָּדַ֤ע הַשָּׂבָע֙ בָּאָ֔רֶץ מִפְּנֵ֛י הָרָעָ֥ב הַה֖וּא אַחֲרֵי־כֵ֑ן כִּֽי־כָבֵ֥ד ה֖וּא מְאֹֽד׃ How does it effect the reading ...
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Why didn't Yaakov go to Egypt with his sons to get food?

Rashi 42:36 says that Yaakov suspected the brothers of killing or selling Yosef and Shimon. Wouldn't he suspect them doing the same with Binyomin? If so, why didn't Yaakov go with his sons to Egypt to ...
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Joseph's interpretation of 7 years of famine - was his prediction false?

There appear to be a few conflicting verses and commentaries on this topic. When Joseph intreprest Pharaoh's dreams he says, Genesis 41:28: ה֣וּא הַדָּבָ֔ר אֲשֶׁ֥ר דִּבַּ֖רְתִּי אֶל־פַּרְעֹ֑ה ...
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Why did Yosef's brothers speak freely in the presence of the interpreter?

In Parashat Miketz, Yosef's brothers encounter him disguised as the viceroy of Egypt, and he accuses them of espionage, jails them for three days, and makes a demand that they know their father would ...
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What did the brothers do in Gen. 42:20?

In Genesis 42, Yosef's brothers, except Binyamin, come to him in Egypt. They don't recognize him, but he recognizes them — and accuses them of spying, and jails them. Then, in verses 18–20:...
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Didn't Joseph's brothers volunteer information about their family?

When Judah tells Jacob that Benjamin must be brought to Egypt if the family is to purchase more grain, Jacob asks his sons why they had to mention the existence of a younger brother. Their response is ...
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Why did Yosef cause so much anguish to his family?

While this question already seems to assume some answer or another (that of a 'deeper purpose'), I thought it strange that nobody has actually asked this question so far: Yosef recognized his ...
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Why Didn't Yosef tell Yaakov He was Still Alive?

What do the meforshim say on why Yosef didn't tell Yaakov he was still alive? Do any critique him?
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1answer
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Rashi says word is redundant

In Genesis 43:11 Rashi's commentary on אֵפוֹא is then: Heb. אֵפוֹא. This is a redundant word, used for stylistic purposes in the Hebrew I was under the impression that the Torah is concise to ...
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One Navi revealing themselves to another Navi

Rav Moshe Feinstein is quoted in Kol Ram asking why didn't Yosef reveal to his father that he is alive in Egypt. He answers that maybe one navi cannot reveal themselves to another navi without HaShem ...
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If Yosef didn't recognize each individual brother, how did he know who Shim'on was?

Sforno on Genesis 42:7: ויכירם שהם אחיו לא שהכיר אחד לאחד: He recognized (collectively) that they were his brothers. But he couldn't distinguish one from the other (he didn't know who was whom.) If ...
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How was Yosef allowed to practice divination?

The Torah prohibits divination as stated in: Leviticus 19:26: לֹ֥א תֹאכְל֖וּ עַל־הַדָּ֑ם לֹ֥א תְנַחֲשׁ֖וּ וְלֹ֥א תְעוֹנֵֽנוּ׃ Do not eat with the blood; Do not practice divination or ...
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How did Yosef showing his circumcision prove anything?

Rashi to 45:4 says that when Yosef told his brothers to approach him, it was to show them his circumcision (presumably to prove he was Jewish). But how would that prove anything? All of Egypt had been ...
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Why does Yosef command the Egyptians to circumcise

Rashi on Bereshis 41:55 says what he tells you, do: Since Joseph had ordered them to circumcise themselves, and when they came to Pharaoh and said, “This is what he said to us,” he (Pharaoh) said ...
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How could the brothers drink with Yosef?

Towards the end of parshas Miketz (Bereishit 43:34), it mentions that the brothers drank with Yosef. Considering that as far as the brothers knew, they were surrounded by idol-worshipers, were they ...
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If Jacob's arrival in Egypt ended the famine there, why was there famine in Canaan while he was still there?

There were seven years of plenteous harvests in Egypt, to be followed by seven years of famine (Genesis 41). Joseph was placed in charge of storing food from the plenty for use during the famine. But ...
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Why didn't Yosef's brothers recognize him?

The Posuk says (Genesis 42:8): וַיַּכֵּר יוֹסֵף אֶת אֶחָיו וְהֵם לֹא הִכִּרֻהוּ Translated as: Now Joseph recognized his brothers, but they did not recognize him The question is: How did ...
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What's the point of a haftorah for Miketz if it's always Shabbat Chanukah?

I have heard that parshat Miketz always falls out on Shabbat Chanukah. If that's the case, why do chumashim print a haftorah for Miketz in addition to the one for Shabbat Chanukah? Should the Chanukah ...
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Do any commentaries explain the charade that Yosef put the brothers through as done with bad intention?

It seems that over the last few hundred years all the commentators that have written on the subject, and all the darshanim I hear talking about it, take for granted that the entire episode concerning ...
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How long was Shimon in prison?

In Bereishit 42:24 Shimon is taken away from the brothers and put in prison as surety so that the other brothers will bring back Binyamin to prove that they are not spies. The brothers then return to ...
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The brothers telling Yosef about Yosef

Rashi to Miketz (Bereishit 42:13-14) says that the brothers told Yosef that they came to Egypt to look for their missing brother. However, in Vayigash (Bereishit 44:20) Yehudah tells Yosef that they ...
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Why was Pharaoh displeased?

In Parshas Mikeitz (Beraishis 41), Pharaoh receives an interpretation for this two dreams from necromancers. Rashi (41:8) says that they told Pharaoh that “You will beget seven daughters, and you will ...
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Two types of forgetting?

Bereishis 41:51 כי נשני אלהים את כל עמלי ואת כל בית אבי God has caused me to forget all my toil and all my father's house Devarim 25:19 תמחה את זכר עמלק מתחת השמים לא תשכח Erase ...
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Poti-phera's Title/Job Description

Genesis 41:45 JPS And Pharaoh called Joseph's name Zaphenath-paneah; and he gave him to wife Asenath the daughter of Poti-phera priest of On. And Joseph went out over the land of Egypt. ...
7
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What is it with the donkeys all over Parashat Mikeitz?

So, we got Bereshit 42, psukim 26, 27 כו וַיִּשְׂאוּ אֶת-שִׁבְרָם, עַל-חֲמֹרֵיהֶם; וַיֵּלְכוּ, מִשָּׁם. כז וַיִּפְתַּח הָאֶחָד אֶת-שַׂקּוֹ, לָתֵת מִסְפּוֹא לַחֲמֹרוֹ--בַּמָּלוֹן; וַיַּרְא, ...
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Why does Yaakov say in Braishis 43(6) "Why have you harmed me etc”

What is Yaakov’s purpose in saying Braishis 43 (6) And Israel said, "Why have you harmed me, by telling the man that you have another brother?" This seems like a remark unworthy of Yaakov ...
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1answer
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Famine in Egypt

Question: How can there be a famine in egypt? Parshas Miketz and Vayigash discuss a famine in Egypt and the world. Rashi's comments to Eikev 11:10 imply that the Nile's annual flooding was critical ...
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Chanukah and Miketz

What is the connection between Chanukah and Miketz — as, in most years, Chanukah falls out in this Parsha?
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How did Yaakov and his family survive “when they finished eating the grain that they had brought from Egypt”.

It says in Beraishis 43(2), “…when they finished eating the grain that they had brought from Egypt, that their father said to them, "Go back [and] buy us a little food."” What were they to eat until ...
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Why did Yosef wash his face after crying the second time but not the first?

In Miketz, Yosef is seen to cry twice. 42:24: וַיִּסֹּב מֵעֲלֵיהֶם וַיֵּבְךְּ וַיָּשָׁב אֲלֵהֶם He turned from them, cried, and returned to them. 43:30–31: וַיְבַקֵּשׁ לִבְכּוֹת ...
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Menashe & Ephraim: Twins?

Were Menashe and Ephraim, sons of Yosef Hatzadik, twins?
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Understanding Rashi's resolution of an ambiguity in Parashat Vayigash

The following is based on a question I wrote in the margin of my chumash about ten years ago. In Yehuda's speech to the Egyptian viceroy (Yosef in disguise) at the beginning of Parashat Vayigash, he ...
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Shmita and Joseph's Dreams

Shmita is every 7 years and we leave the land unused. In Egypt there were 7 years of feast, then 7 years of famine. As leaving the land unused could be considered famine like conditions, are there any ...
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Why did Binyamin think Yosef was still alive?

Rashi (Bereshit 43:30), quoting the Talmud (Sotah 36B), tells us that Binyamin named each of his 10 sons in honor of Yosef. Many of the names indicate that Binyamin knew that Yosef was alive, in ...
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Was Binyamin aware of Tzofnas Paaneach (aka Yosef)'s true identity?

While Yosef recognized his brothers, they did not recognize him. I heard a Rosh Yeshiva suggest that Binyamin, who wasn't so absorbed in the soap opera, was able to recognize Yosef, but played along ...