What is the biggest number found in Torah? Can be from any work at all, except maybe more recent contemporary works by popular Rabbis, such as R Kaplan or Dr. Schroeder, where they might bring in huge numbers from science or maths.

The most obvious is the one from Berachot 32b:

אָמַר לָהּ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא: בִּתִּי, שְׁנֵים עָשָׂר מַזָּלוֹת בָּרָאתִי בָּרָקִיעַ, וְעַל כׇּל מַזָּל וּמַזָּל בָּרָאתִי לוֹ שְׁלֹשִׁים חַיִל, וְעַל כׇּל חַיִל וְחַיִל בָּרָאתִי לוֹ שְׁלֹשִׁים לִגְיוֹן, וְעַל כׇּל לִגְיוֹן וְלִגְיוֹן בָּרָאתִי לוֹ שְׁלֹשִׁים רַהֲטוֹן, וְעַל כׇּל רַהֲטוֹן וְרַהֲטוֹן בָּרָאתִי לוֹ שְׁלֹשִׁים קְרָטוֹן, וְעַל כׇּל קְרָטוֹן וּקְרָטוֹן בָּרָאתִי לוֹ שְׁלֹשִׁים גַּסְטְרָא, וְעַל כׇּל גַּסְטְרָא וְגַסְטְרָא תָּלִיתִי בּוֹ שְׁלֹשׁ מֵאוֹת וְשִׁשִּׁים וַחֲמִשָּׁה אַלְפֵי רִבּוֹא כּוֹכָבִים כְּנֶגֶד יְמוֹת הַחַמָּה. וְכוּלָּן לֹא בָּרָאתִי אֶלָּא בִּשְׁבִילֵךְ, וְאַתְּ אָמַרְתְּ ״עֲזַבְתַּנִי״ וּ״שְׁכַחְתַּנִי״?! The Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Israel: My daughter, I created twelve constellations in the firmament, and for each and every constellation I have created thirty armies, and for each and every army I have created thirty legions [ligyon], and for each and every legion I have created thirty infantry division leaders [rahaton], and for each and every infantry division leader I have created thirty military camp leaders [karton], and for each and every military camp leader I have created thirty leaders of forts [gastera], and on each and every leader of a fort I have hung three hundred and sixty-five thousand stars corresponding to the days of the solar year. And all of them I have created only for your sake; and you said the Lord has forsaken me and the Lord has forgotten me?

= 1.06434 sextillion, a number with 18 zeroes (a billion billion):

1,064,340,000,000,000,000 stars

Can we do better? (infinity is not a number)

  • mgketer.org/tanach/1/41/49
    – Double AA
    Commented Feb 1 at 19:04
  • האמר רבן שמעון בן גמליאל אני אומר דבר אחד והם אמרו דבר אחד לדברי אין סוף ולדבריהם אין סוף
    – rosends
    Commented Feb 1 at 19:16
  • The Gemera in Kiddushin talk about the large number of Mitzvos , that are multiplied multiple times by the number of Neshamos or something like that, I cant find it now.
    – sam freed
    Commented Feb 1 at 20:55
  • @samfreed You mean this?
    – shmosel
    Commented Feb 1 at 21:08
  • The number from Sotah 37b is only 17 trillion. @RabbiKaii you are still in the lead
    – sam freed
    Commented Feb 2 at 3:45

2 Answers 2


When King David orders Yoav to take a census of the Jewish people, Yoav replies (Shmuel 2:24:3):

וְיוֹסֵף ה' אֱלֹקֶיךָ אֶל־הָעָם כָּהֵם  וְכָהֵם מֵאָה פְעָמִים וְעֵינֵי אֲדֹנִי־הַמֶּלֶךְ רֹאוֹת

May Hashem your G-d add to the people like them, and like them, a hundred times, with the eyes of my lord the king seeing it!

on which Rashi comments:

כהם כפלים, וכהם שני כפלים, הרי ארבעה כפלים, וכן חוזר וכופל את הכפילה, עד מאה פעמים

"Like them" means double their present number, "and like them" means doubling again - so far, fourfold - and then continuing to double again and again, 100 times.

So in other words, Yoav is giving a blessing that the Jewish people increase to 2100 their current numbers.

Later in that passage (v. 9) the number is given as 1,300,000 men fit for military service, and Rashi there quotes a Midrash which reconciles this with the account in Divrei Hayamim 1:21:5 that records 1,570,000. Taking the latter figure, then (which Rashi and his source states is the true one, the lower figure in Shmuel leaving out some people for various reasons given there), we have Yoav looking forward to David personally seeing 1,990,211,442,358,320,160,349,824,032,440,320,000, or 1.99 x 1036, Jewish men fit for military service, to say nothing of the women and children and older men!

  • 2
    This answer is accepted until someone beats it!
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented Feb 24 at 20:05
  • Where did you get 10^36? I'm not an expert on Tanach yet. Also 2^100 is 1267650600228229401496703205376 Commented Apr 10 at 20:32
  • @Awtsmoos--עצמות You have to then multiply that by the number of Jews counted in the census, as I said.
    – Meir
    Commented Apr 10 at 22:54


Hashem tells Avraham:

  1. And He took him outside, and He said, "Please look heavenward and count the stars, if you are able to count them." And He said to him, "So will be your seed." ה. וַיּוֹצֵ֨א אֹת֜וֹ הַח֗וּצָה וַיֹּ֨אמֶר֙ הַבֶּט־נָ֣א הַשָּׁמַ֔יְמָה וּסְפֹר֙ הַכּ֣וֹכָבִ֔ים אִם־תּוּכַ֖ל לִסְפֹּ֣ר אֹתָ֑ם וַיֹּ֣אמֶר ל֔וֹ כֹּ֥ה יִֽהְיֶ֖ה זַרְעֶֽךָ:

Scientists underestimate the number of stars in the presently observable universe as 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000, a 1 with 24 zeroes after it.

This is close to the number given in another answer, 2^100, which is 1267650600228229401496703205376 (1 with 30 digits after it), so it's a close call, but considering the number of stars is an underestimate it's possible they are exactly the same, which fits what the promise says.

  • 10^24 is nowhere near 10^30
    – Heshy
    Commented Apr 10 at 20:59
  • @Heshy it is when one considers that the current number is a very low estimate that can greatly grow with small amounts of new discoveries. True that 1^6 is no where near 1, but when you get into entirely new categories of numbers a few powers of ten don't make so. much difference. Commented Apr 10 at 21:17
  • First of all, you've left out the multiplier of over one and a half million that I mentioned, so that adds a few more orders of magnitude. Second, six such powers, let alone 12, make an enormous difference, and if you don't think otherwise, why then how's about you lend me 10^12 dollars and I repay you 10^1?
    – Meir
    Commented Apr 10 at 22:57

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