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In his siddur, Rav Sa`adya haGaon (Rasa"g) mentions only four of the five species of peroth ha-ilan which are special to Eress Yisrael, leaving out zethim ("olives"). He does so in two places. Further, he does not simply list the other four and leave out olives, rather he precedes his listing of them with the words huss me-arabaah dhevarim ("except for these four things"). This seems to indicate a volitional (i.e. shitah-based) reason for doing so.

Question: Why does Rasa"g not mention zethim in his list of the five peroth ha-ilan which Eress Yisrael is known for and which require Birkath Me-En Shalosh (i.e. al ha-ess we-al feri ha-ess)?

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  • Possibly related to the question of beracha on olives, since they are primarily grown for oil—and oil (unlike wine) is not drunk on its own. Oct 28, 2013 at 1:50
  • @J.C.Salomon If olive oil is drunk on its own as food then it also gets an "Al haPeirot".
    – Double AA
    Oct 28, 2013 at 2:27
  • Perhaps he viewed olives as ba im haseuda and left them off because they are usually covered in the birkat hamazon? Note his discussion at the bottom of the page after the linked page.
    – Double AA
    Oct 28, 2013 at 16:06
  • "we-al feri" ?
    – Double AA
    Jul 26, 2016 at 22:18
  • Did you see the footnote at the other location hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=20685&st=&pgnum=146 ?
    – Double AA
    Jul 26, 2016 at 22:21

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