According to Wikipedia, Heleni HaMalkah was married to her brother. Since she was a convert to Judaism, on a Torah level, her familial relationships were severed. However, as far as I know, there is still a Rabbinic prohibition to engage in incestuous relationships after conversion; she seems to be violating a Rabbinic law.

But wait! The gemarah (Sukkah 2b) quotes a beraita in which Rabbi Yehudah says about her:

כל מעשיה לא עשתה אלא על פי חכמים

Loosely translated:

She always kept the Rabbinic laws

How is this contradiction resolved?

Possibility: the Wikipedia link cites Josephus as the source that Queen Heleni was married to her brother. Perhaps we simply do not accept this as accurate?

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    The wiki article on her brother makes it look as if he died before she converted, so it's possible that she did not break the halacha as brought by Chaza"l after converting. – Noach MiFrankfurt Oct 2 '15 at 13:11
  • "ואיהי בדרבנן לא משגחה " – rosends Oct 2 '15 at 13:16
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    @Danno That's the hava amina. – Daniel Oct 2 '15 at 13:18
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    Note that the translation is more like "Everything that she did was done after consulting with the chachamim" – sabbahillel Oct 2 '15 at 14:16
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    Could that derabanan not have been enacted yet? – Double AA Oct 2 '15 at 14:23

When she's mentioned in M. Sukka, her husband is NOT. B"SD I think he was not alive during that incident recorded there (especially when they are discussing matters of education & her husband is not at all addressed).

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  • I think it is indeed clear that her husband is not present during the incident recorded there. If he had been there, the discussion could never have happened because the sukkah would have been required deoraita. But she was already Jewish at that point. Was he dead before she ever converted? – Daniel Oct 2 '15 at 14:16

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