Does anyone know if the Artscroll translation of Maharal's Be'er Hagolah is an unabridged one of the entire sefer by the Maharal?


1 Answer 1


It is not an unabridged translation. As the author writes in the introduction

Maharal's style is individualistic and difficult to penetrate. He uses terms and phraseology that can be seen in so many different ways, that the student may be left frustratingly in the dark. The answer is close at hand, but eludes firm clutching. Sometimes it helps to compare parallel texts in which the Maharal uses the same phrase or argument. My own experience, though, is that finding three similar texts, leaves me triply irresolute.

There are no classic line-by-line commentaries to Maharal that have become popular. I therefore attempted to storm the palace, and offer something other than a translation. In fact, I don't translate at all. I try to digest the Maharal's step-by-step development, and offer some understanding of what it may mean to us.

I have tried to steer a middle path between translation without comment, and complete modification and adaptation. These are not esays-based-upon. I have tried to remain faithful to the Maharal's own development of a topic. This means that more remains unsaid than stated, and this work is meant to be studied, not read. I've attempted wherever possible to convey the sense of each paragraph and argument, usually in the same basic order as the author. I have not held back in offering my own grasp of what he was getting at, but I have swallowed my words many times, and suppressed the desire to say much, much more. To do more would be imposing my own views more than tolerably.

I have not included every piece. I chose selections that I thought had the most interest to, and the most to contribute to, the contemporary student. Maharal at times maps out an approach to unlock a difficult passage of Chazal, He will next apply the same approach to similar passages, which he sees as variations on the same theme.


Omitted entirely are the sections in the sixth Beer that attempt to harmonize the astronomy and cosmology of Chazal with that of sixteenth-century Europe. While these sections are of immense interest to scholars of the period, I have not yet discovered how these passages would help today's student harmonize Chazal with today's science. [...]

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