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Who knows three hundred forty nine?

תשעה וארבעים ושלוש מאות - מי יודע?‏

The traditional Passover song "Echad - mi yodeya" implies a possible presupposition that there is a Jewish significance to be found for each natural number. Accordingly, there is an ongoing series on Mi Yodeya that is attempting to unearth significant Judaism facts about each number, in sequence.

What significant Judaism facts are there about the number 349? The more significant within Judaism and the more intrinsically dependent on the value 349, the stronger the answer. Please include sources for your information wherever possible, as with all other answers on this site.

Please, leave the lazy gematria answers alone for a while.

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  • So when I try posting it it gets closed... – bluejayke Mar 3 at 15:39
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    @bluejayke Please see (and contribute to, if you like) the discussion at judaism.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/5394/… and judaism.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/5397/… . Community consensus appears to favor closing this series at 365. Please note also that for questions of borderline acceptability, which these are, the details of how well the post, as written, fits our scope and Q&A model can affect how the post is moderated, and always, post quality can affect how the community receives a post. – Isaac Moses Mar 3 at 15:43
  • Would you accept Negative Commandment 349: It is forbidden for a woman to engage in sexual relations with an animal. [Leviticus 18:23] ? – Maurice Mizrahi Mar 3 at 18:54
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    @MauriceMizrahi That there's an item on a long list indexed by a particular number is not really something special about that number. – Isaac Moses Mar 3 at 19:25
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349 are the number of theoretical days imputed by the Jewish calendar.0

Rabbi Eliezer says in the Midrash (found in Vayikra Raba 29) that the Universe was Created on 25 Elul, making 1 Tishrei, which we celebrate as Rosh Hashana, the day that humanity was Created. This position apparently prevails with respect to Jewish calendar calculations. The starting point for calculating the times of molads (average-based expected times of new moons) is not the 1 Tishrei in which humanity was Created, but the 1 Tishrei of the previous year, the year in which the Universe was initially created on 25 Elul. That epochal 1 Tishrei, however, is merely a theoretical construct used for calendrical calculations, not a point in the history of the Universe, which began on 25 Elul, 349 days "later." (As the ephochal 1 Tishrei is assumed to be a Monday for these calculations, and the Creation of humanity is assumed to be a Friday, that implies a 354-day year.1) Therefore, for the purposes of this calculation, the calendar includes 349 theoretical days preceding Creation.


0. Hat-tip to: Sheldon Epstein, Bernard Dickman, and Yonah Wilamowsky, "Bircas HaChamah and Calendar Mathematics: Precision, Simplicity and Conflict". Hakira 6, 2008. Footnote 86.
1. Thanks to DoubleAA for helping improve analysis in this post.

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Apparently, the Samaritans maintain Noah's flood happened after 1307 years, not after 1656 as we count it, a difference of 349 years. This claim is supported by various Web sites and books that can be found online: here's one example and here's another.

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    Are they any torah sources that support this? Karites also say things, yushkuh-ites also say – bluejayke Mar 3 at 15:40
  • The Torah is literally the source @bluejayke (the Samaritan girsa that is) – Double AA Mar 3 at 17:15
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    @double the Torah is the source of everything deep down, even kleepuhz, but we don't follow samaritan geersuhz, we follow Toyruh shibawl peh EDIT realized right after writing this that you may have been sarcastic – bluejayke Mar 3 at 18:48
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    @bluejayke re your comment "Are they any torah sources that support this?": not that I'm aware of. This answer is just comparing the correct version to the incorrect version. It's not a great answer for this site, since it's a "comparative religion"-esque answer, but, hey, it's 349: beggars can't be choosers. – msh210 Mar 4 at 8:25
  • @msh10 I'm not sure who's begging – bluejayke Mar 5 at 4:31

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