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About the pommel on the menorah: I couldn't find the commentary about which fruit / flower it was supposed to represent. Was it the pomegranate?

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    It was made like "almonds, with a bulb and a flower in one branch" (Shemos 25:33). The almond has a deeper meaning. I can't see the comparision.
    – Shmuel
    May 23, 2022 at 7:46
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    We don't have the original menorah, so how are we to say that that's what it looked like?
    – Harel13
    May 23, 2022 at 9:24
  • You don't cite any sources. How do you know what the Menorah looked like exactly?
    – Yoreinu
    May 23, 2022 at 20:12
  • ๐Ÿ™Thank you so much Harel & Yoreinu for your comments! Brakha veHatzlakha!
    – Zacchino
    Jun 22, 2022 at 4:52

1 Answer 1

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One of your first questions is, "was it the pomegranate?". To this, I would like to point out the following:

In Shemos 25, G-d instructs Moshe Rabbeinu to let the people build the Mishkan (Tabernacle). In verse 33 is states:

three cups made like almonds, with a bulb and a flower in one branch; and three cups made like almonds in the other branch, with a bulb and a flower: so in the six branches that come out of the candlestick.

The Ibn Ezra on this pasuk (verse) explains the meaning of the word ืžึฐึฝืฉืึปืงึผึธื“ึดึžื™ื (Meshukadim) found in verse 33. ืžึฐึฝืฉืึปืงึผึธื“ึดึžื™ื is namely used as "almond blossoms" in shape of almonds:

THREE CUPS. The Gaon says that meshukkadim (almond blossoms) means in the shape of almonds. However, the word meshukkadim really is related to the word li-shekod (attached)256 in Attached daily at my gates (Prov. 8:34).257

A similair idea can be found in the commentary of the Minchat Shai:

ืฉืœืฉื” ื’ื‘ืขื™ื ืžืฉืงื“ื™ื. ื–ื” ืœื‘ื“ื• ื‘ื’ืขื™ื ื‘ืกืคืจื™ื ื›"ื™ ื•ื’ื ื‘ื“ืคื•ืกื™ื ื™ืฉื ื™ื ื•ื›ืŸ ื‘ืค' ื•ื™ืงื”ืœ:

The word Meshukadim is plural for ืฉึธืืงึทื“, meaning almond (tree). See also the discussion here (Hebrew).

The Rambam (Maimonides), in his Mishneh Torah; Hilchos Beis Habechirah (chapter 3:1-2) writes:

The Menorah's shape is described explicitly in the Torah, and there were four cups, two knobs, and two flowers on the stem as it says "and on the Menorah there were four cups, decorated with its knobs and its flowers." There was a third flower near the leg as it says "from its leg to its flower." It also had three legs and three more knobs on the stem where the six branches came out, three on each side. There were three cups, a flower, and a knob on each branch and all of them were made like almonds.

See also the commentary of the Ma'asei LaMelekh on this halacha, where he discusses the concept of the flowers/cups being in the shape of meshukkadim.

Similary, a few chapters later, the Torah explains (Shemos 37:19):

Three bowls made after the fashion of almonds in one branch, a bulb and a flower; and three bowls made like almonds in another branch, a bulb and a flower: so throughout the six branches going out of the candlestick.

However, I found a different opinion on what it looked like, based on the translation of the Targum Yonasan:

Three embossed cups with their figurations on one branch, with the apple and lily, and three embossed cups with their figurations on the other branch, with the apple and lily; so the six branches which proceeded from the candelabrum.

See this page for more pictures, also old pictures, on what the Menora (should) looked like. But please bear in mind what Harel13 mentions in his comment.

Hope this helps!

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    This helped a lot, it actually answered my weird question... Gotta love studying the Torah because it filters out imagination and subjective analogies from the truth :) ๐Ÿ™ Thank you SO MUCH Rav Shmuel! May HM bless you with an amazing health & energy, easy and reachable Avodat 'Hol that brings you joy and multiplies in Brakha, without any trouble or delay, and may HM give you lots of joy studying Torah & Mitzvot to your heart's content, finding new amazing 'Hidushim, and also happiness & Sh.alom Bayit, oh and of course effortless fruitful education of your children! ๐Ÿ‘‹๐ŸปTatzlia'h
    – Zacchino
    Jun 22, 2022 at 4:45
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    PS: You said something about the Sod of the Meshukadim (Gematria 494)... I'm curious, why would HM choose Almonds? Is it about the Shape or about the Fruit itself? Or the name of the fruit "Meshukad"? I found out that ืžึฐึฝืฉืึปืงึผึธื“ึดึž has a Guematria of 444 !!! Same Gematria as ืžืงื“ืฉ / ื”ืฉืคื˜ื™ื / ื—ืœื•ืช and ื™ืœื“ืช (very shabbatic themed) Yeah I know, I'm one of those... I blame my "French Sefaradi Tunisian" root, we're known to love esoteric stuff PS: Dietary and medically speaking, it's the one of the most (if not the most) "basic" fruit as opposed to acid, in terms of alkaline properties.
    – Zacchino
    Jun 22, 2022 at 5:12

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