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It’s well known that the Korban Todah must be accompanied by 40 ‘loaves’ of bread product, 10 each of four types of bread including 10 matzot. Can someone tell me, in modern terminology, the volume (in pounds or kilos) of these forty loaves?

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    pounds and kilos are units of mass, not volume
    – Joel K
    Commented Nov 15, 2023 at 15:33
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    A shiur challah is somewhat less than a standard five-pound bag of flour. Depend on your opinion, maybe more like three pounds. So take twenty of those bags.
    – MichoelR
    Commented Nov 15, 2023 at 19:03
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    The Shach and the Aruch Hashulchan say that the shiur of one Isaron is 12 cups of flour. Again, multiply by twenty for the Todah.
    – MichoelR
    Commented Nov 15, 2023 at 19:04
  • @MichoelR yeah thanks that gets us there a bit faster. An Omer of flour by volume is estimated between 3 and 5 lbs of flour, ergo 60--100 lbs of flour. Which was my conclusion. I hadn't realized that the chametz and matza were in even proportions. Gives new meaning to Ma Nishtana's chametz umatza -- not only would they normally eat both, but it would be half and half! (Strong argument that the Ma Nishtana is comparing the Korban Pesach to its close cousin, the Shlamim Todah.)
    – Shalom
    Commented Nov 15, 2023 at 21:30
  • In case it is helpful further, a לוג (one-twelfth of a הין), the measuring stick of oil and wine in many korbonos, is about the same as a 12-ounce can of coke. This helps me a lot in picturing these things.
    – MichoelR
    Commented Nov 16, 2023 at 17:25

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Rambam, Laws of Procedures of the Sacrifices, 9:17:

כֵּיצַד הוּא הַלֶּחֶם שֶׁמֵּבִיא עִם הַתּוֹדָה. לוֹקֵחַ עֶשְׂרִים עִשָּׂרוֹן סלֶת וְעוֹשֶׂה מֵהֶם עֲשָׂרָה עֶשְׂרוֹנִים חָמֵץ וַעֲשָׂרָה מַצָּה. הָעֲשָׂרָה שֶׁל חָמֵץ עוֹשֶׂה אוֹתָם עֶשֶׂר חַלּוֹת: What is meant by the bread that is brought together with the thanksgiving offering? One should take 20 isaronim *An isaron is defined as a measure equivalent to the volume of 43 and 1/5 eggs. of fine flour. He should make ten isaronim leavened and ten unleavened. The ten that are made leaven should be made into ten loaves.

He continues that you take the unleavened flour and make 30 loaves from it. So you start with twenty isarons of flour and proceed from there. (Obviously, different forms of preparations will yield different final volumes of the breads.)

An isaron, i.e. tenth of an epha, is, order-of-magnitude wise, somewhere between a half-gallon and a gallon. (If you work with "volume of 43.2 eggs" and assume today's eggs, you get a half gallon; if you calculate up from the 4-ish fluid ounces people usually drink at the Seder as a "quarter-log", you get more like .8 gallons.)

So eh, 10--20 gallons of flour.

Assuming five gallons of flour weigh 33 lbs, then we're looking at, order-of-magnitude wise, eh a hundred pounds of flour.

You'd have to consult a baker on the volume (or weight) of bread made out of a hundred pounds of flour, especially as some were fried, some leavened ... it gets complicated. But the laws are at least pretty clear on how much flour goes into it!

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  • I think an improvement could be made of you added in the volume according to different shittos for the volume of an egg - gra"Ch Noeh, Chazon Ish etc.
    – Lo ani
    Commented Nov 15, 2023 at 18:14
  • @Loani if we're telling people what to practically do, e.g. how big their cup of wine should be at the Seder, sure. For the purposes here, I think order of magnitude suffices.
    – Shalom
    Commented Nov 15, 2023 at 18:41

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