My research for my answer to Which alphabet were the original Torah scrolls in? gave me an idea--Since the Early Alphabetic alphabet is also called Sinaitic, and the timing seems about right, maybe the Alphabet was also given at Sinai along with the Tablets and Laws...quite a gift to us and the world! Is there any information in the extant literature on this possibility?

  • 3
    There is a braisa quoted in Megillah and Shabbos that R'Chisda says the mem and samech of the luchos stood via a miracle. I understand that to mean that they were composed of an outer shape (oblong or circular) and an inner portion which miraculously did not fall out. That's one clue. Oct 15, 2012 at 21:52
  • 3
    @AvrohomYitzchok See the version in the Yerushalmi רבי לוי מאן דאמר לרעץ ניתנה התורה עי"ן מעשה ניסים מאן דאמר אשורי ניתנה התורה סמ"ך מעשה ניסים because in Ktav Ivri an Ayin looks like an O.
    – Double AA
    Oct 16, 2012 at 2:44
  • @DoubleAA Oh Thanks for setting me right! Oct 16, 2012 at 13:37

2 Answers 2


I believe it was used in Egypt, well before the Tablets.

  • 5
    Would you please edit the basis for your belief into your answer? No offense, but your belief alone is not worth much for those of us who don't know you (which is most of us).
    – msh210
    Oct 17, 2012 at 6:52
  • @OptionParty, this would be an interesting answer if you have references for it. Thank you for helping others to shinan'tam as well
    – Zachariah
    Oct 17, 2012 at 13:59
  • ...that ieue.org site looks like they have the answers to EVERYTHING, and they must, because they KNOW they're right--LOL! So far, the earliest Early Alphabetic/ProtoSinaitic in those pages is from the Sinai mines--some say 15th/14th century BCE, others say 19th...so nobody's SURE. Our ancestors were in the Sinai, the literate ones were familiar with the Heiroglyphic signs, G-d possibly gave them the alphabet to use-the more I think about it, the more it makes sense...our ancestors wandering the Sinai had plenty of time to teach it to other populations there and in Canaan as they travelled...
    – Gary
    Oct 19, 2012 at 2:24

See Shabbos 31a where Hillel the elder implies that the way to read the letters was passed down as an oral tradition. It was always confusing to me how someone can read the first word of the Torah and deny the oral tradition. How did they read the Torah without it?

Also, see Sanhedrin 108 where it is clear that Avraham had the exact text of Parshas Noach (see Yad Rama there where in one opinion he says that they had the entire future text of the Torah Before Sinai!).

You must log in to answer this question.

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