Which words or descriptions serve as references for the word sukkah? I will accept any and all sources that are accepted here at mi yodeya.


Two that spring to mind are the following:

  1. In Gemara Succah 3a (amongst other places) there is a reference to Succah as being a מטללתא as in "אפומא דמטללתא" - the entrance of the Succah. See the Jastrow below for the source of the word:

מַטְלָלָא, מְטָלָא m. (טְלַל I) shelter, hut, booth. Targ. Ps. X, 9 (Ms. מְטַלְלָא).—Y. Succ. III, beg. 53ᶜ עביד ליה מטלא וכ׳ put up a festive booth for himself in the street.—Pl. (מְטַלַּיָּא) מְטָלַיָּא. Targ. O. Lev. XXIII, 42 (ed. Amst. מְטָלַיָּת, corr. acc.). Targ. II Sam. XI, 11; a. fr.

מְטַלַלְתָּא, מְטַלְּתָא f. same. Targ. Is. I, 8. Targ. Jon. IV, 5. Targ. Y. Lev. XXIII, 42; a. e.—Constr. מְטַלַּת (מַטְלַת). Targ. O. ib. 43 מְטַלַּת (Ms. I מְטָלָיוּת, III מְטַלַּת pl.). Targ. Is. IV, 6.—Esp. festive booth, Succah. Succ. 3ᵃ אפומא דמטלל׳ Ms. M. (ed. מטולתא, מטלתא, v. Rabb. D. S. a. l. note) at the entrance of the Succah. Ib. 28ᵇ במ׳ in the Succah, בר ממ׳ without the Succah (in the house &c.). Y. M. Kat. III, 82ᵃ הוות מְטַלְּתֵיה וכ׳ if his (the mourner’s) Succah is small; a. fr.—[Treat. S’maḥ. ch. XI, end מטלתא דכרמא the watchman’s hut in the vineyard—a mistaken gloss to אודייני, which found its way into the text; v. M. Kat. 27ᵃ, a. אוּרְיָינִי.]—Pl. מְטַלָּתָא, מְטַלָּן. Targ. O. Lev. l. c., v. supra. Targ. Gen. XXXIII, 17 (Y. מַטְלָן).

  1. The famous alternative reference is 'צִלָּא דִּמְהֵימְנוּתָא' - lit. the shade of faith - see the Zohar 3:103b

תָּא חֲזֵי, בְּשַׁעֲתָא דְּבַר נָשׁ יָתִיב בְּמָדוֹרָא דָּא, צִלָּא דִּמְהֵימְנוּתָא, שְׁכִינְתָּא פַּרְסָא גַּדְפָהָא עָלֵיהּ מִלְּעֵילָּא, וְאַבְרָהָם וַחֲמִשָּׁה צַדִּיקַיָּיא אָחֳרָנִין שַׁוְיָין מָדוֹרֵיהוֹן עִמֵּיהּ.

Come and see, when one sits in this dwelling in the shade of faith, the Divine presence spreads Her wings over him from above, and Avraham and five other righteous ones after him (i.e. the Ushpizin) come to dwell with him.

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  • +1. So a synonym for a Sukkah (based on these references) are: "shelter" or "watchman's hut" or "shade of faith". These sounds great. On an unrelated note, but also in your reference, why does your quote say "Avraham and five other righteous ones" when I thought there were 7 Ushpizin? – ninamag Oct 5 at 19:14
  • Yes I noticed that as well(!) The Zohar only details six (Avraham + 5) - anyone have an answer for that one? – Dov Oct 5 at 19:19
  • ? sefaria.org/…\ – Dr. Shmuel Oct 5 at 19:24
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    Your translation, "אפומא דמטללתא", even according to Jastrow is incorrect. מטללתא is a verb, not a masculine noun. It should read, "If therefore it is covered...". Your quotations from Jastrow are mixing the verb which means, "to cover", with the masculine noun which has a meaning of shade or shadow. – Yaacov Deane Oct 7 at 18:42
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    The word, "sukkah" (סכה or סוכה) is from the root word, "s'kach" (סכך) like is stated in Jastrow. It means shade. – Yaacov Deane Oct 7 at 18:52

The word sukkah is a remez to the 3 ways one can build a kosher sukkah; the ס is the most mehudar way- 4 complete walls. The כ represents a sukkah of three walls. And the ה represents the bare minimum of 2 walls with a tefach of a third wall.

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  • I'm sorry I don't remember where I heard this from. – The Rashkibehag Oct 9 at 16:04

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