Torah scholars from 1000-1500, roughly.

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God Desires the Heart

The Gemara (Sanhedrin 106b) says that "God desires the heart". A responsum attributed to Maimonides interprets this to mean "knowledge of God, morals and wisdom" (letter to Hasdai Ha-Levi; Maimonides ...
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34 views

Who is Ranbi in the Shitta Mekubetzet?

Who is the רנב"י quoted by the Shitta Mekubetzet to Nedaarim (8a s.v. אמר רב גידל)? Could it be R. Nissim ben Yaakov Gaon?
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Pursuing pluralist purpura

According to most rishonim (and the simplest read of the extant Talmudic texts) the tekhelet string is dyed in its entirety. However, the Rambam maintains that only half the string is dyed such that, ...
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Responses of Raavya to Rokeach

R. Elazar of Worms (author Sefer Rokeach) sent questions to R. Eliezer ben Yoel (known as Raavyah). These are recorded by Raavyah (ch. 151). responses to some of the questions are recorded there. I ...
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27 views

Hilkhot R. Yehudah in Raavad

Who is the author of הלכות הר"ר יהודה זצ"ל quoted by the Raavad cited by the Shibbolei Haleket (Tfillah 5)?
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Any support for this Shita Mikubetzes?

The Shita Mikubetzes in Neddarim, top of 2b reads like this: מאי שנא גבי נדרים דתני כולהו. בכמה מקומות מקפיד התלמוד על כדומה לזה ושואל 'מאי שנא' כי הכא, ובכמה מקומות אינו שואל. לפי שדרך התלמוד להקשות ...
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68 views

Words of Torah Need Not Be Enunciated

Ritva (commentary to Brachos 15b) writes that Torah need not be enunciated out loud during study. Which other Rishonim espouse this view? I am not asking regarding side issues such as verbal ...
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84 views

Words of Torah Must Be Enunciated

Several Acharonim (e.g. Pnei Yeshoshua to Brachos 15b) write that words of Torah must be enunciated during study. Which Rishonim agree to this view. (I am asking specifically about those who hold ...
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19 views

(Talmid) Rabbenu Yonah to Rif on Berakhot

Who authored the commentary to the Rif on Berakhot variously referred to as 'R. Yonah', or 'talmid R. Yonah'? Was it perhaps edited by a student as I seem to remember hearing?
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111 views

Which (if any) Rishonim ascribe to a haskafah of hashgacha pratis over everything?

In contemporary times, HaShem's hashgacha over everything is a common hashkafah, at least in the Litvish/Chassidic communities (see Baal Shem Tov, Aruch HaShulchan, Rav Dessler 'Strive for Truth', ...
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65 views

When did “Musaf Rashi” on Talmud Bavli begin being added to the on the page? Did Tosafos ever refer to any of the Musafim?

On some editions of Talmud Bavli, there is a section entitled, "Musaf Rashi." When were these additions to his commentary found, and are there any references to it in Tosafos?
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44 views

Who is the רא"ם

The Shitta Mekubetzes on Nedarim (8a) quotes the רא"ם. Who does this refer to? (My guesses for possible candidates are R. Eliezer of Metz, R. Eliyahu Mizrachi, and Ri Ibn Migash.) Extra points to ...
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4answers
107 views

Definition of the Written Law

What are the views of Rishonim and their predecessors regarding the scope of תורה שבכתב, Written Law. This has ramifications for halachos such דברים שבכתב אי אתה רשאי לאומרן ,בעל פה in addition to ...
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68 views

Rishonim who wrote on Kodshim

Seder Kodshim is composed of largely currently non-applicable laws, relating to sacrifices and the running of the Temple. The Rambam wrote on Kodshim. So did Rashi and the Ba'alei Tosefos. To the ...
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4answers
331 views

Rishonim/Achronim time period differentiation

When was the end of the Rishonim time period and the start of the achronim time period? Who, what, why, and how did this come about? What caused this abrupt change in deemed mental and halachot ...
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26 views

Writings of R. Samuel Bonastruc

Where could I find writings of R. Samuel Bonastruc (a.k.a. Astruc) of Daroca? I see him referenced here.
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2answers
19 views

R. Moses al-Ashkar's Response to Sefer ha-Emunot

Where can I find the Maharam al-Ashkar's response to Shem Tov ibn Shem Tov's Sefer ha-Emunot (Hassagot Al Mah She-Katab R. Shem-Tov Neged ha-RaMbaM)?
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29 views

Commentary to Sefer Yetzirah of R. Yehuda Ben Barlizai

Where can I find the commentary of R. Yehuda Ben Barzilai to the Sefer Yetzira? I am particularly looking for the 1858 Berlin ed.
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254 views

When will the period of Acharonim end?

What will mark the end of the period of Acharonim? What in general demarcates rabbinical eras? Are these halachic rules or conventions?
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55 views

Which Rishonim held of shkia/tzeis according to the zman of Rabbeinu Tam?

Which Rishonim held of shkia/tzeis according to the zman of Rabbeinu Tam? Ive heard the Shulchan Aruch (rishon/acharon) held of it, did he pasken like for starting shabbos?
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The משלח is dead, long live the משלח!

Tosfos (Gittin 13a, s.v. לא יתנו) write that דאע"ג שמינה המגרש בחייו השליח לא חשיב להיות כמותו אחר מותו כאילו הוא עצמו קיים אלא חשיב גט לאחר מיתה Even though the husband appointed his ...
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217 views

When was the Meiri discovered?

According to Wikipedia, the Meiri was rediscovered in modern times. I assume that means in the 20th century or so. However, Hebrewbooks has a copy of the Meiri from 1795. I don't know if that was the ...
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34 views

Where can I find the Rif's Arabic explanation on the Talmud in English or French?

According to the Jewish Encyclopedia, the Rif's Arabic explanation on the Talmud was originally gave as an appendix to Massehet Ketubot. The Rif refers to this explanation in his Halakhot (Ketubot ...
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26 views

Rambam's Talmud Commentary

Where can I find Rambam's commentary on Bavli (whatever remains of it) besides for his commentary on tractate Rosh HaShana?
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61 views

Rambam's Hilchos HaYerushalmi

I am looking for Rambam's Hilchos HaYerushalmi (ed. Lieberman) (or a some other edition if it exists). Is it available for free online?
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1answer
94 views

Looking For HaMaspik

I am looking for the halachic portion of Hamaspik L'ovdey Hashem by R. Avraham Ben HaRambam published by Bar Ilan Univ. I have found links to it on HebrewBooks, but it isnt there (I guess it was taken ...
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147 views

Do any Geonim or Rishonim adopt/incorporate teachings from Philo?

Do any early commentators from the geonim or rishonim periods cite any teachings from Philo Judeas by name?
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183 views

Did any classic rabbinic sources discuss static electricity?

Not much more to add here, I've just always wondered if static electricity was discussed in any Chazzal or Rishonim. Someone from those times must've gotten a good zap and I'm wondering what they had ...
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165 views

Is the Ramchal's sefer Derech Hashem based on any particular Rishon?

Many books written by (early) Achronim are based on a particular shittah usually sourced in one or more of the Rishonim. This can be true both with regards to actual halachos or lists of mitzvos and ...
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120 views

Brevity of the Rishonim

I have heard about Rashi that he measured his words very meticulously and that consequently every word he chose to write in his commentary is important for understanding his view. There are even ...
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116 views

Are there any jokes in the Geonim or Rishonim?

Inspired by this question are there any recorded jokes in the works of the Geonim or Rishonim? Please cite sources
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35 views

Ibn Ezra at the Yam Suf - Hashem saved them THAT day?

The Torah says in Sh'mos 14:30 . . .וַיּוֹשַׁע ה' בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא אֶת יִשְׂרָאֵל מִיַּד מִצְרָיִם That day God saved Yisra'el from the hand of Mitzrayim. . . I wondered why in this context ...
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What was the ריב"א thinking?

In ריקאנטי number 166 (brought down here, #4), he brings a story about the ריב"א: ושמעתי כי ריב"א חלה חוליו שמת בו וחל יוה"כ באותם הימים וא"ל הרופאים אם לא תאכלו ודאי תמות ואם תאכל שמא לא תחיה ...
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311 views

Did R' Moshe de Leon write the Zohar

Although "traditionally" ascribed to Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai zt"l, the Zohar has been beset with controversy about its authorship since it was discovered and published by R' Moshe de Leon. Notably ...
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349 views

What was the value of the Rishonim's philosophical inquiries about God and the world?

Many Rishonim used the philosophy of their time or previous times to 'prove' God's existence and/or learn about the nature of the world. 1- Why did they do this? (Is there a mitzvah to use ...
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60 views

What does the Ritva hold about טלי קידושיך מעל גבי קרקע?

The case of "טלי גיטיך מעל גבי קרקע" (where the husband told his wife to pick up her גט [divorce document], rather than handing it to her directly) is an invalid divorce (רבא, Gittin 24a). The ...
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70 views

Requirement to Divorce an Infertile Wife or Marry a Second Wife

In the Mishneh Torah הלכות אישות פרק טו, ב Rambam requires a man to who hasn't had a male and female child and whose wife has not given birth for ten years since their marriage to either take a second ...
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34 views

Who wrote the Ritva on Gittin?

I've heard many things about the author of "Ritva on Gittin." It might have been the Ritva, it might not have been. There's also the "חידושים מכתב יד," which some ascribe to the Ritva, while others ...
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412 views

Eldad HaDani's Lasting Influence - Is there any?

Eldad HaDani is (apparently) considered today to have been a fraud. According to this Wikipedia article, he was a traveler who told stories of his place of origin, which he claimed was a sovereign ...
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241 views

How was the Shaalos Utshuvos Min Hashamayim allowed to do what he did?

The Shut Min Hashamayim was written by a Rishon in the time of Tosfos. He used to ask questions from Shamayim (Heaven) in a Sheilas Chalom (Dream Question) and write the answers down. Many of those ...
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Text based Ritva / Rabeinu Kresscass?

My chavrusa is looking for a text-based copies of Ritva (חידושים מכתב יד) and Rabeinu Kresscass (ריטב"א) on Gittin, so that he could put them into his computer. Where can I find a copy of either of ...
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68 views

Where can I find an online copy of ספר החכמה?

In Gittin 10b, many Rishonim (Mordechai [who appears to have been a student of his] and a few more) reference one רבינו יקיר (aka אפרים, as in "הבן יקיר לי אפרים"), in a work called ספר החכמה. I can't ...
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66 views

Online דרשות הר"ן in Hebrew block print

Does any know where I can find online a pdf of דרשות הר"ן that's in hebrew text and not in Rashi script/ text?
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253 views

Sources in Rishonim on the Authenticity of the Zohar

Are there any early contemporary discussions from the time of the revelation of the Zohar among recognized Rishonim about it's authenticity? I mention "among recognized Rishonim" because I am aware ...
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262 views

Saying Rishonim or Achronim were “wrong”

People are very careful (and rightfully so) to say when they don't understand the words of the Achronim or Rishonim to not say they are/were "wrong". But rather to say "I don't understand what he ...
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46 views

Text of Derashos HaRan online

I was looking online for the text of דרשות הר"ן but I have been unsuccessful. Does anyone where I might be able to find it online? (i.e like this)
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66 views

Who is this Gadol?

The Aruch Hashulchan Orach Chaim Siman 639 Saif 16 quotes a Rashba who brings a Halacha from בשם גדול הדור מצרפת. Do we know who this Gadol is?
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116 views

History of the two versions of the Ritva

I recall from my time in Yeshiva that the version of the Chiddushei HaRitva in use in the 19th century was clearly not the original (as proved from quotations in the Shita Mikubetzes), and that the ...
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38 views

Which Ra'avad is on the Rif?

I am aware that there is more than one author known as the Ra'avad (ראב"ד). Is the Ra'avad with glosses to the Rif and the Ma'or the same Ra'avad as the one with glosses to the Rambam? If they are ...
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4answers
271 views

How do Rishonim argue on Drashos Chazal?

There is a known rule that Rishonim cannot argue on the Gemara when it comes to "Halachic" drashos. For example, a Rishon will never give a different answer to a question which the Gemara already ...