Who knows twenty-two?

Please cite/link your sources, if possible. After about one business day, I will:

  • Upvote all interesting answers.

  • Accept the best answer.

  • Go on to the next number.


13 Answers 13


22 blemishes that invalidate an Olah (offering). (Likutei HaGra Shebimedrash Tadshei)

  • אם קבלה היא נקבל, I guess. But aren't there 73 blemishes that invalidate a korban (Rambam, Issurei Mizbe'ach 2:1ff)? Granted that a couple of these apply specifically to female animals, but even after subtracting those, you have well over 22. – Alex Apr 22 '10 at 18:29
  • I think he is referring to blemishes that an animal is born with. His language is "Chaf Beis Mumin HaPisulim Le'Olah". – Yahu Apr 22 '10 at 19:21
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    Now that I think of it, maybe he's taking the Rambam's list of 23 blemishes that apply specifically to animals (the other 50 are common to both korbanos and Kohanim), and subtracting the one (#12 on the Rambam's list) that applies only to a female animal. – Alex Apr 22 '10 at 20:11
  • I think you got it! – Yahu Apr 23 '10 at 6:12
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    As an Olah can only be a male animal. (Just clarifying for other readers.) – Shalom Apr 23 '10 at 13:37

22 letters in the aleph-bet

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    I think this must have been one of the ones that everyone figured, "well, it's so obvious - surely someone else is going to put it up!" :) – Alex Apr 26 '10 at 18:15

22 are the customary number of lines in a mezuzah (Shulchan Aruch, Yoreh De'ah 288:11).


22 times it says "Ashrei" in Tehillim. (VaYiklrah Rabbah, Parshasah 10, Medrash Shohar Tov, 1)

  • Interesting, because I count 25 times. I wonder which three the Midrash is excluding from the enumeration? – Alex Apr 22 '10 at 18:41
  • Good question. The answer probably would enlighten us as to the significance of the number. – Yahu Apr 22 '10 at 19:22
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    I had a chance to look this up in Midrash Rabbah Hamevuar this morning. (By the way, the correct citation is Vayikra Rabbah 34:1.) He cites three explanations: (1) it excludes the ones where the second "ashrei" just amplifies the preceding one (32:2, 84:6, and 144:15b); (2) it counts only the ones referring to positive deeds (so it excludes 127:5 and 137:8-9); or (3) it counts only the ones referring to individuals (so it excludes 33:12, 89:16, and 144:15a-b - though I'm not clear about that last answer, since that leaves us with 21). – Alex Apr 23 '10 at 17:31
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    Alex, Yiyasher Kohacha! – Yahu Apr 23 '10 at 18:12

22 cups (Givi'im) on the Menorah. (Menahos, Daf 28)


22 years that R' Akiva served Nachum Ish Gam Zu (Bereishis Rabba 22:2)


22 things were created in the world in the six days of creation... (Medrash Tadshei, 6)


22 are the months before an elephant's born!

22 are the books of Tanach without any inverted nuns.

  • Or 3 years, according to the Gemara (Bechoros 8a). – Alex Apr 22 '10 at 18:15

Per the Medrash Breishis Rabsi Parshas Chaya Sara 23:1 which lists 22 Isha Ksheiras.

כ"ב נשים כשרות היו בעולם ואלו הן שרה, רבקה, רחל, לאה, סרח בת אשר, יוכבד, מרים, בתיה בת פרעה, דבורה, צללפונית אשת מנוח, חנה, אביגיל, מיכל, בת שבע, אבישג, חולדה הנביאה, יעל, אסתר.‏


חטה (wheat) has the gematria of 22 corresponding to the number of letters of the Aleph Beis which might explain why R. Yehudah says in Berachos 40a that the Tree of Knowledge was חטה.

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    Is this your explanation of R Yehuda's opinion? – Double AA Feb 11 '14 at 18:24
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    @DoubleAA - The first line is from the Zohar IIRC, but the association with R. Yehudah's teaching is my suggestion. – user4523 Feb 11 '14 at 19:17

Twenty two were the years of Ya'akov's separation, first from his parents, and then from Yosef.

(Hat-tip: my daughter)


Twenty two years is the maximum amount of time in which one should look forward to the fulfillment of his dream, as derived from Yosef whose dreams of his family bowing to him took 22 years to be fulfilled (Brachos 55b).


Rachel and Leah were 22 when they married Yaakov. - Seder Olam Rabbah 74:4

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