Unanswered Questions

20
votes
1answer
661 views

Providing wine for Christian ceremonial purposes: in the 8th century, what did the rabbis write?

Under Charlemagne in the 8th century and the Carolingian emperors, Jews were official importers of exotic foods from the Holy Land;[1] they also provided wine for Christian mass. At the time, what ...
14
votes
1answer
192 views

School closing - At what point must the parents be told?

Yeshiva A or Bais Yaakov A has serious financial problems. They are doing all they can to stay viable, however unless a big donor steps forward they will be forced to close. If the school tells the ...
14
votes
0answers
159 views

Why was the side door to the hechal unlocked so oddly?

The hechal (central room) of the bes hamikdash had its main entrance on its eastern end. To either side of that entrance were cubicles, and the main-floor cubicles on each side had a door to the east ...
13
votes
2answers
323 views

How are the two tales of dancing in vinyards on the 15th of Av related?

The Mishna tells us (Taanis 26b) that on the 15th of Av, unmarried girls would borrow clothes, dance in the vineyard, and invite the unmarried men to choose them for marriage. The Talmud (Taanis 30b) ...
13
votes
1answer
238 views

Why does the torah give us exact dates for the flood?

This question asks why the flood didn't end on the 18th of Cheshvan (one year after the start). My question is more basic: why does the torah give us precise dates here at all? Bereishit 7:11 tells ...
12
votes
1answer
173 views

Mizmor L'Toda with Melody

The Shulchan Aruch in Orach Chaim 51:9 rules that "The Psalm of Thanksgiving [i.e. Psalm 100] should be recited with a melody, for all songs are destined to fall into disuse, except for the Psalm of ...
11
votes
0answers
130 views

Wearing clean but not “freshly laundered” clothes in the 9 Days

As an extension of this unanswered question, and based on the site linked to in this question, what does "freshly laundered" mean? I had a bunch of long sleeved shirts laundered in mid-June but then ...
11
votes
3answers
195 views

Why not two days of Rosh Hodesh, as we have two days of yontif?

The reason for two days of yontif (outside Israel) is based on uncertainty about the date due to distance from Jerusalem and time needed to travel to convey the news of when the month started. The ...
11
votes
0answers
174 views

How and when did fedoras arise as acceptable headwear?

Today I learned that the fedora was originally a woman's hat, invented/popularized for women in the late 19th century and only migrating into menswear after 1924 when Prince Edward of England started ...
11
votes
2answers
351 views

Is it correct to say now “Moshiach must come in this generation”?

Is it correct to say “Moshiach must come in this generation”? Related How do we understand Talmudic predictions of Moshiach? The statement was made in a shiur I attended. I asked the maggid shiur ...
11
votes
1answer
240 views

Intentionally using a grace period on a rental

I recently rented a bike for a few hours, and the person in charge of the rental told us that we have "X number of hours, and a 15 minute grace period," followed by the warning that if we don't return ...
11
votes
2answers
230 views

Hefsek in being yotzei besamim in havdallah

This past motzei Shabbos, in the Shul where I davened, there were a number of young men who were lining up to be included in the communal havdallah done at the end of Maariv. The person making ...
10
votes
0answers
258 views

Waiting after meat and milk

If someone eats a mixture of meat and milk, does he need to wait before eating more meat or milk?
10
votes
0answers
520 views

Where did the “a cat will always be a cat” story about the Rambam come from?

I've seen and heard a story about the Rambam told multiple times along the lines of this particularly concise retelling: There is a beautiful story of a disagreement that Maimonides had with a ...
10
votes
1answer
80 views

Can an ultrasound be relied upon?

I have read reports of the accuracy of gender prediction from an ultrasound with numbers ranging from 90-98%. There is a halacha (Y.D. 194:11) that if a fetus sticks its hand [or possibly any limb] ...

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