In Sotah 46a, it says the following:

אָמַר לְהוּ הַהוּא מֵרַבָנָן ור׳ יַעֲקבֹ שְמֵיהּ לְדִידִי מְפָרְשָא לִי מִינֵּיהּ דְרַבִי יוֹחָנָן מְשִיכַת עוֹל לְרָחְבוֹ טֶפַח

One of the rabbis said to them, and his name was Rabbi Yaakov, The statement of Rabbi Yochanan was explained to me as meaning: Drawing by a yoke to the extent of a handbreadth in its breadth.

Why does the Gemara refer to R' Yaakov in this odd fashion?

  • I would appreciate if anyone could add other places where R' yakov is mentioned in this way; my rabbi said he is referred to like this in all of talmud
    – yogazefish
    Dec 29, 2022 at 5:24
  • See Shabbos 134b, 'Eruvin 80a, Kiddushin 13a and 55a, Bava Kama 94b, 'Avoda Zara 75b (cf. Tanchuma on Chukas), Chullin 76a
    – Fred
    Dec 29, 2022 at 6:52
  • 1
    Though R' Ya'akov is the most frequent one introduced this way, he isn't the only one. Rav Tavus, for instance, is introduced this way in a couple places Bava M'tzi'a 49a (see also Sanhedrin 97a): "אמר לי ההוא מרבנן ורב טבות שמיה ואמרי לה רב שמואל בר זוטרא שמיה דאי הוו יהבי ליה כל חללא דעלמא לא הוי קא משני בדבוריה". This thread cites R' Chaim Kanievsky as saying that it means the amora who quoted the teaching didn't know who said it, but the Sages knew and added it in.
    – Fred
    Dec 29, 2022 at 7:00
  • See this article for a discussion of the topic. R' Ya'akov was a student of Rabbi Yochanan, so that should help identify which R' Ya'akov it is. Our girsa of the gemara in Chullin refers to him as "Rav Ya'akov", while one girsa of the Ran (on Shabbos) interestingly refers to him as R' Akiva.
    – Fred
    Dec 29, 2022 at 7:06
  • Avodah Zarah 28b, Avodah Zarah 75b, Chullin 76a, Chullin 98a, Shabbat 134b, Eruvin 80a, Kiddushin 13a, Kiddushin 55a, Bava Kamma 94b, Menachot 17a (Baruch Hashem for technology). @Fred, your comment that seems to contain the correct answer - can you post it as one for posterity?
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Dec 29, 2022 at 13:59


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