Does anyone translate "סֻכּוֹת" in Vayikra 23:43 as a place name rather than an object (see Shmot 12:37 and 13:20, where it's a place name)? Might the Toarah mean "celebrate Sukkot because that's the first place you 'landed' as free people", to which R' Eliezer says 'protected by anannei kavod' and to which R' Akiva says --take it literally.

  • Interesting. But how would that fit with 23:42? – Double AA Nov 14 '14 at 17:34
  • Hello Barry, and welcome to Mi Yodeya! Interesting question, +1. You might consider registering your account, which will give you access to more of the site's features. Hope to see you around! – MTL Nov 14 '14 at 19:50
  • @DoubleAA 42 refers to booths; 43 refers to the place. לא קשיא – Scimonster Nov 15 '14 at 16:34
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    @Scimonster It may or not be a Kasha, but it's profoundly odd. "Sit in booths because I had your ancestors dwell in a place with a coincidentally similar sounding name." – Double AA Nov 15 '14 at 22:59
  • @barrygoodlife welcome and nice question! – gamliela Jan 3 '18 at 16:13

I don't believe any Peshat commentators offer this as an option (I'm sure you can find it somewhere in a Chassidish Sefer), for a number of reasons:

  1. The Nikkud of Basukkos seems to imply in "The" Sukkos, meaning the Sukkos that we were in. If it was referring to the place, it would say "BeSukkos".

  2. As mentioned above by DoubleAA, this does not seem to fit with the previous Passuk, as it would make the flow of the Pesukim very odd.

  3. (I would not normally bring a proof from Chazal, but being as you understood it to be according to them in your question...) It is impossible to understand Rabbi Akiva as referring to the place "Sukkos", as he says "they made/built literal Sukkos", not just "literal Sukkos":

ענני כבוד היו דברי רבי אליעזר, רבי עקיבא אומר: סוכות ממש עשו להם

I always value original thinking, which this certainly was, especially considering some of the other Peshat factors, like the word "Hoshavti", so kudos to you on the question.

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