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16

The oldest written Torah Sheb'al Peh (though not exactly a manuscript) would seem to be the recently-discovered mosaic of the ancient shul in Beit Shaan. The Hebrew Wikipedia article about that shul (which was destroyed 1300 years ago, and existed a few hundred before that) can be found at this link. Here is their image of the mosaic (I hope I'm allowed to ...


14

The Mahara"l of Prauge, in his commentary to Megilas Esther called Ohr Chadash, (after offering the more basic suggestion that this denotes something Mordechai would do on a constant basis), explains that even when Mordechai had an option to use an alternate route, he would make a point of going in front of Haman and not bowing down. The Ohr Hachayim ...


12

As you yourself say, the Muslim claims have never been backed up with proof. If there would be proof, why would they not inform us? That seems ample proof that it's a baseless claim. There are various proofs that the Torah we have is essentially identical to the original (with some minor spelling variants). One is the fact that all Jews have the same ...


10

Ohr Chadash - Maharal M'Prag asks this question and answers that Mordechai intentionally made sure to be in the areas where Haman was going to show he was not going to bow down. לא יכרע, זהו אף שהיה יכול מרדכי ללכת בדרך אחרת שלא יהיה פוגע בו ולא יכעס המן


9

Traditional Judaism regards the oral law as the primary means of interpreting the written law - i.e. the Pentateuch and the rest of the Old Testament. The oral law is a combination of specific laws which the Tradition says were transmitted by God to Moses at Sinai and a code of various methods of exegesis by which to derive laws from the Bible. This second ...


8

There is a sefer by Efraim Urbach called "Ba'alei HaTosafot" (in Hebrew) that discusses them and analyzes, Masechta by Masechta, who the anonymous authors might be.


7

The earliest printed sources that mention the bans of Rabbeinu Gershom ben Yehuda, one of which is the ban on polygamy, appear to be the Machzor Vitry (§575) and two teshuvot of the Maharam of Rotenberg (§153 and §1022). A much easier source to find (and read) is the anonymously-authored Sefer Kol Bo, which was probably composed in the 14th century. There ...


7

Sort of what Josh wrote in his comment, it seems to have to do with the fact that the usual accent for this word would be on the ב, and it's moved to the ש because of nasog achor.1 Mishpetei Halashon Ha-Ivrit explains it as follows: Basically, this nasog achor would require (based on the rule of dechik2) that the first letter of the following word have a ...


6

Apparently, at least in the last couple of centuries, the Keter was jealously guarded and people indeed were not permitted to make copies of it. (There may well have been other copies of it from Rambam's times or the next couple of centuries after that, but if so, they either haven't survived or are unknown.) One important source that we do have - R. ...


6

Wikipedia's article "Tosafot", quoting the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia's: The edited tosafot owe their existence particularly to Samson of Sens and to the following French tosafists of the thirteenth century: (1) Moses of Évreux, (2) Eliezer of Touques, and (3) Perez ben Elijah of Corbeil.


5

For starters: in Ashkenazic custom (which I think the questioner was assuming), the kesubah has already been signed (i.e. executed) before the chupah, so the reading is nothing more than a pause between parts of the ceremony. It's accomplishing nothing of a halachic nature any more than reading the latest stock numbers would be, hence many rabbis have been ...


4

The berachah is in Siddur R. Amram Gaon, and almost identically in Siddur R. Saadyah Gaon. Both of them also say that it should be prefaced with Vayechulu and the berachah on the wine.


4

All of the risonim (starting from Rashi and Tosafot) take up the task of determining the correct wording of the gemara. All of the commentators who do this maintain that the version they correct it to is the correct version, and whatever they saw on the page had gotten mangled. The Bach's emendations were speculative, based on the opinion that it solves ...


4

G-d gave all the laws to Moses, and he passed it on to his students orally until the time of R' Yehudah, who wrote everything down in the mishnah in a concise way (Gitin 60a). We accept everything written there, since it came from G-d Himself. However, by that time, disputes had already risen over things that had to do with logic (which we are expected to ...


4

I think you are referring to the (re)discovery of the Torah scroll by Chilkiyahu the High Priest in the time of Yoshiyahu (Josiah?) (mentioned in Kings II chap. 22, and Chronicles II chap. 34), in the course of renovations to the Temple. (If I'm mistaken, please cite a source). You are quite correct that there were many copies of the Torah. This particular ...


4

This is an excellent question that is best asked to your local Orthodox rabbi. 1 One important aspect of the question, which should not be minimized, is the public humiliation to the bride, who will be mortified that her lack of virginity will be revealed to her friends and family. Chazal say (Berachot 43b) about embarrassing someone in public that it ...


3

I have never heard of a restriction. Most (if not all) copies of Tanach I've seen are justified. In fact, copies of the Pentateuch that are written in the traditional style (handwritten on parchment, etc.) should be justified[1] (except that some sections should end mid-line) — but that rule doesn't apply to print, paper copies. Note, though, that, ...


3

Sifse Chachaim 22 (tav) to 31:6 indicates that B'tzal'el was in charge, Aholiav helped him with his tasks, and the two of them delegated other responsibilities to the others. In other words, the two of them were in charge; this, I assume, is why they were mentioned by name.


3

Perhaps the verse is used as a kind of Kal VeChomer. The end of the verse says "for My house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples." This is in line with what King Shlomo prayed for during the dedication of the Beit HaMikdash, Melachim I 8:41-43: And also to the stranger, who (is) not of Your people Israel, but will come from a far country ...


3

The following is a source that I am aware of. Be'er HaGola at the end of Yorah Deah 334 http://www.hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=20241&st=&pgnum=21 http://www.hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=20241&st=&pgnum=22


3

http://dafyomi.co.il/azarah/halachah/az-hl-026.htm Rambam (Hilchos Mamrim 3:3): One who does not admit to oral Torah is an Apikores http://dafyomi.co.il/sanhedrin/halachah/sn-hl-113.htm Shulchan Aruch (334:21): If Kisvei ha'Kodesh were written by an Apikores, i.e. a devout idolater, or a Mumar to idolatry, we do not save it. Even on a ...


2

Nechama Leibowitz, in this letter, outlines her approach to this question. I think a basic level of intellectual honesty demands that if someone says a good pshat, that we use it. If they got it right, they got it right. To the sources regarding kisvei hakodesh written by an apikores, I think one must distinguish between the ideas and the physical books. The ...


2

It doesn't seem logical that we should be able to use these kinds of things alone as evidence against a mesorah, because there were deniers of our mesora back then just as there were today. It's not like Judaism was monolithic in those days either. You had the Pharisees (Perushim), Sadducees (Tzedukim), the Essenes (possibly the Baysusim/Boethusians), and a ...


2

The first "באהבה" refers to G-d's love, the second one refers to our love. According to the Levush (brought here), we add the 2nd "באהבה" on Shabbos, since we willingly, lovingly accepted Shabbos at Marah, before Matan Torah. The holidays were given to us at Sinai, where the Talmud tells us we were coerced into accepting the Torah. G-d's love , on the ...


2

there are many different tosafot on each meseches some of the more famous ones are tosafot harosh tosafot ri"d tosafot rabeinu peretz tosafot tuch (most common alongside gemorah ) tosafot harashb"a meshantz tosafot rabbeinu moshe there may be as many as 20 on any given mesechet when the gemorah was published they printed whatever tosafot was available, ...


2

To intentionally read the Ketubah errantly is problematic. Our modern custom of reading the Ketubah comes from two primary halakhot in the Shulhan Arukh: Choshen Mishpat 45:2 2 If the Head of the Beis Din is familiar generally with the document, and his personal scribe who he trusts and who fears him reads it to him, he may sign the Shtar without ...


2

If you are using an iPhone, there is an exceptionally good app called HebrewBible, by Bill Clementson. It has the BDB lexicon in it, but unlike BDB it also contains a full concordance. You can search by the first two root letters, and when you have found the word that you are looking for it will give you a listing of every verse in Tanakh that features that ...


2

To expand on Danny's answer. As per Danny, it's clear that Jews everywhere have had essentially identical texts for thousands of years. If you want to look back before that, I recommend David Weiss Halivni's books, particularly "Peshat & Derash". He defends the thesis that the texts did suffer some issues in the era of the Judges, and that Jewish ...


2

Kulanu, as the others have said, means that everyone leans. How to square that with the fact that not everyone is required (or even allowed in some cases) to lean is asked by the Natai Gavriel. In a nutshell, his answer is leaning is about showing the autonomy and freedom of liberation, and that we all participate in the action of showing the liberation of ...


1

Exodus Rabah 40:4 explains that Judah was the greatest of the tribes, whereas Dan was the least of them1. Gd mentions Bezalel, a noble of the exalted Judites, descendant of Prince Caleb and the Prophetess Miriam, (Sotah 11b, Numbers 13:2-3, Megilla 14a), grandson of Hur, a leader recognized by Moses, (Exodus 24:14), alongside Oholiab the lowly Danite, ...



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