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When the Mishnah uses the term חכמים אומרים, as in the first Mishnah in Tractate Brachot, approximately how many comprised this group? Who were in this group of people? (doesn't need to be a complete list, but some of the main people.)

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    It's not like there's a group of tanaim and then there are the chachamim. חכמים אומרים is the consensus opinion (typically, but not necessarily, in contradiction to the opinion of whoever else is mentioned; i.e. in your case, Rabbi Eliezer and Rabban Gamliel). In other cases, Rabbi Eliezer may be included among the חכמים. Sometimes the gemara tries to figure out who the "chachamim" mentioned are in a particular case. – Daniel Jun 28 '17 at 17:07
  • Anshei Knesses Hag'dolah? – ezra Jun 28 '17 at 18:43
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    A pointer towards answering this: There were 5 or 6 generations of Tannaim, and you could have veChachamim Omerim for Tannaim at each generation. And the gemara in discussing them refers to Rabbanan deRabbi Meir, or Rabbanan deRabbi Akiva, and they are not expected to be in agreement with one another. (And often are not, e.g. in Bava Metzia.) So we are not necessarily talking a single group. – josh waxman Jun 28 '17 at 22:55
  • @Daniel This sounds like a decent answer. My word! You got 5 upvotes on a comment! – DanF Jun 29 '17 at 15:29
  • @joshwaxman Sounds like a good answer. – DanF Jun 29 '17 at 15:29

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