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One important thing to realize about Rashi's commentary is how often he is citing midrash. He may very well believe that these midrashim were historical. And he cites them as אגדה המיישבת דברי המקרא דבר דבור על אופניו, as he states in his commentary to Bereishit 3:8. That is, midrash which works with peshat, and answers to peshat concerns. In this instance, ...

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