The phrase עדיין אנו צריכין למודעי is found in the Talmud and Midrash (see Bava Batra 10b and Genesis Raba, Vayechi). It's a strange phrase to introduce a sage by - "we still need the [Rabbi Elazar] Mudaii." The phrase has taken on a life of its own and is used in many situations where a scholar wants to emphasize that something does not make sense and needs further examination.

Why was he introduced in this unique way?

  • 1
    It seems to have been a phrase used specifically by Rabban Gamliel. Maybe he simply appreciated R Elazar HaModai's perspective on matters. Also, I think it might be a pun on his name - we need HaModai, the one who is aware of things, or who teaches things.
    – Joel K
    Commented Feb 21 at 13:49


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