I often hear that the printed "Rashi" commentary in certain masechtot of the Talmud Bavli (first that come to mind are Moed Katan and Nedarim) is not actually written by Rashi. Does anyone have a full list of which of the commentaries were actually written by Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki and which were written by others in his style? How would one tell the difference?

  • 1
    look at the Chida in Shem Hagadolim he is the source for the info under Rasi Apr 3, 2012 at 6:44
  • 4
    According to the מהר"ץ חיות, the perush on Masechet Ta'anit was not written by Rashi. The חיד"א in Shem HagGedolim disagrees. Apr 3, 2012 at 12:46
  • Wth regards to @BaalShemotTovot 's comment, you can see where the Chida talks about Rashi's authorship of Masechet Ta'anit on page 10 of daat.ac.il/daat/vl/shemhagdolim/shemhagdolim10.pdf
    – Menachem
    Jul 30, 2012 at 22:58
  • Agav, according to my history teacher R. Dovid Katz (Baltimore) Rashi composed his work by using an older work, the kuntres, and editing / adding to it. Some of the perushim on the side of the Gemara e.g. the Rach are actually earlier versions of the kuntres. He said that even after Rashi completed his work he went over it two or three times and he continued editing throughout his life (and apparently there are actual manuscripts where you can see words crossed out by Rashi himself). IIRC his theory of these masechtos is that Rashi hadn't edited them as much by the time he passed away.
    – Dov F
    Jul 30, 2012 at 23:13
  • 1
    @DovF If nothing else, discussing this very topic with R. Katz :)
    – mevaqesh
    Oct 14, 2016 at 3:28

5 Answers 5


According to the JNUL website,

Printed editions of the commentaries on tractates Ta’anit, Nedarim, Nazir and Horayot have been mistakenly attributed to him, and were most probably written by the scholars of Mainz or others. Likewise the printed commentary on Moed Katan is wrongly attributed to him. Two tractates have partial Rashi commentaries: Bava Batra (until 29b) and Makkot (until 20a). There is some conjecture as to whether Rashi was the author of the commentary on the Tractate Avot printed in the Siddur Tefila (daily prayerbook), edited by Netanel ben Peretz Halfan, Trino, 1525.

As to how one would be able to tell the difference, I assume it is through normal literary analysis methods, such as style of writing, linguistics, access (or lack thereof) to certain other texts quoted within, reconciliation with author's other writings, etc.

  • The Rashi-like commentary on Taanis keeps referring to the Shachris prayer as "Yotzer", which I don't believe Rashi does on other tractates.
    – Shalom
    Apr 5, 2012 at 2:08
  • 3
    While we're at it: the Rashi-like commentary on Divrei HaYamim, when translating Hebrew phrases into "laaz" (vernacular), is using Old German instead of Rashi's usual Old French!
    – Shalom
    Apr 5, 2012 at 2:09
  • @Shalom the Mahara"tz Chiyot goes through a list of like 6 reasons why he thinks it isn't Rashi on Ta'anit. (I linked to it in my comment above.) Apr 5, 2012 at 5:55
  • Jake, do you know if Rashi on Keritot was authored by R Shlomo himself or only attributed to him?
    – Bach
    Jul 13, 2017 at 20:45
  • 1
    Kinnim, tamid..
    – kouty
    Jun 5, 2019 at 14:16

As @simchastorah mentioned in a comment to the question, the Chida, in his entry on Rashi in his sefer Shem HaGedolim, goes through all the opinions about Rashi's authorship of various commentaries.

It starts on page 7 of this pdf, and continues through page 10.

  • 3
    This answer could be greatly improved by summarizing his comments for the masechtos in which he concludes it is not Rashi.
    – DonielF
    Sep 4, 2017 at 18:46

In some cases it is brutally obvious -- pseudo-Rashi on Tamid, for example, cites Rashi on Shabbat by name. In others it's more difficult to tell. A few tools -- pseudo-Rashi occasionally cites different foreign languages, or the same ones (French, German/Yiddish) at different frequencies. pseudo-Rashi occasionally explicitly disagrees with genuine Rashi on other sugyos. An experienced reader will sometimes, but not always, notice a change in style, habitual vocabulary, or sources. And we are not the first to wonder -- in the case of many masechtot this is an old issue on which later commentaries have already done the work and recent printed editions may even mark the transition on the page.

  • 1
    Another clue, I recently did Me'ilah, and Tosefot never once quotes Rashi.
    – MichoelR
    Dec 30, 2021 at 23:57

the last perek of pesachim has rashba"m as well as rashi. the perus on tamid is not rashi, nor is the perush on kinnim. the middle of menachos has two printed versions of rashi, it is possible that on is misattributed to him. printed in place of rashi on nazir is the riva"n, rashi's son-in-law. the end of makkos is that riva"n and rabbeinu gershom. the "rashi" on the last perek of sanhedrin (perek chelek) may be misattributed. the perush on nedarim is of unknown authorship. the rashi on avos is actually written by r' simcha, author of the machzor vitri. in menachos 13a there is a long explanation by the rashba"m. most of bava basra is expalined by teh rashba"m. rashi on me'ila is not rashi. (he quotes rashi sometimes)

  • Besides for the grammar mistakes, most of the statements in this answer can be supported by Artscroll's introduction to the masechtos in question.
    – DonielF
    Sep 4, 2017 at 18:46

According to Oz V’hadar, Rashi on Chelek is not actually Rashi; they note, however, that this isn’t so well-accepted. On Daf 90a, footnote נ, they write:

נראה למי שמכיר בלשון הרש״י הקצר והנקי שפירש פרק חלק אינו מרש״י אלא מאחד מתלמידיו, אבל מה אעשה שהרמ״ה העתיק ממנו דיבורים שלימים וכתב על זה ״ורבינו שלמה פירש.״

It appears to one who recognizes the words of Rashi as short and clear that the commentary on Perek Chelek is not from Rashi, but rather from one of his students. But what can I do? The Rama”h already quoted from him complete phrases, writing on this, “Rabbeinu Shlomo explained.”

  • As I tried to indicate in my edit, oz vehadar isn't saying anything themselves. They're quoting the dikdukei sofrim (I incorrectly wrote beer Sheva), as they themselves point out. Oz vehadar aren't an authority on anything, so I believe you should correctly cite their source, or leave them out altogether.
    – robev
    Dec 30, 2021 at 6:46

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .