Follow up to this answer that states that women were excluded from the decree of dying in the desert.

If their husbands died and they didn't have children, I assume that they wanted children. Thus, is it possible that many of these women may have married men that were significantly younger than them? Did they marry while still in the desert, or was it more likely that they remarried after 40 years only after entering Israel? How was the next generation created?

  • Is it some sin for a woman to marry a man significantly younger than her?
    – ezra
    Jun 19, 2018 at 4:57
  • 1
    Huh? For 38 years the 60-year old men died on the 9th of Av. What's your question again? Jun 19, 2018 at 12:22
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    @DannySchoemann This is a significant aspect that I did not understand. All men died when they reached their 60th birthday? I thought it was a "random" year.
    – DanF
    Jun 19, 2018 at 13:47
  • Good question! What's the Rashi's source? Does anybody else mention that? But what exactly your question about - what do you find difficult to grasp? Let's say they all remarry and had kids - is there any problem with that?
    – Al Berko
    Jun 19, 2018 at 21:59
  • @DanF - the Ikar Tosfot YomTov on Sotah 1:9:(29) says that nobody died UNDER the age of 60. His source seems to be the Tosfot YomTov, who quotes Rashi in Chumash - Devarim 15:33 - ארבעים שנה. לֹא מֵת אֶחָד מֵהֶן פָּחוֹת מִשִּׁשִּׁים שָׁנָה - see next comment Jun 25, 2018 at 12:13

1 Answer 1


According to the Medrash Raba (Bemidbar 16:23) quoted by Rashi in Parshat Shlach (Bemidbar 15:33) nobody died before reaching the age of 60.

לֹא מֵת אֶחָד מֵהֶן פָּחוֹת מִשִּׁשִּׁים שָׁנָה

This would have given everybody ample time to have children and even grandchildren.

This is also mentioned by Tosafos in Mo'ed Katan 28a (ד"ה ומיתה) who quotes a Yerushalmi who says the same thing.

ומיתה בידי שמים בששים. בירושלמי מפיק ממתי מדבר דאמרינן לא מת אחד מהן פחות מבן ששים

(I cannot locate the original Yerushalmi.)

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