Did Noach live 950 years or 951 years?

At the begining of the flood Noach was 600 years old Bereishis 7,6:

ונח בן שש מאות שנה והמבול היה מים על הארץ

The flood lasted 1 year as Rashi says Bereishis 8,14:

משפט דור המבול שנה תמימה היה

This means Noach was 601 at the end of the flood. It then says Noach live 350 years after the flood in Bereishis 9,28:

ויחי נח אחר המבול שלש מאות שנה וחמשים שנה

This adds up to 951 years. Yet it says That Noach lived 950 years in Berishis 9,29:

ויהיו כל ימי נח תשע מאות שנה וחמשים שנה וימת

The Torah is perfect so whats the deeper meaning?

  • 1
    The numbers are rounded. He most likely didn't die on his birthday so it depends how you count the partial years.
    – Heshy
    Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 16:35
  • Doesn't Rashi address this at length regarding Shem's age at the flood?
    – Double AA
    Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 16:38
  • @heshy i won't accept such an answer as It says hNoach was a Tzadik and Tzadikim die comleting their years As its written "es Mispar Yomecho amalei" and also one would need a proof.that the years were incomplete
    – user15464
    Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 16:39
  • 2
    @user15464 There have been plenty of Tzaddikim throughout time who haven't died on their birthdays.
    – ezra
    Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 16:44
  • 2
    If I recall correctly I have seen somewhere that the year of the flood is not counted. Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 17:14

1 Answer 1


Copying from YEZ’s answer to the related question of whether Moshe was 120 or 121:

The Da'as Zkeinim (and the Chizkuni) at the beginning of Parshas Noach addresses this issue in a different context - The posuk says תמים by Noach, and the Midrash says (Bereishis Rabba 30:8) that anyone described as such lived to an age the which is the multiple of 7 (full שבוע). Noach's 950 do not add (or divide) up. He answers that he lived this amount from the time which the Torah described him as תמים, the 350 years after the Mabul. However, there is an extra year, the year of the Mabul itself, which came after he was described as תמים! Says the Da'as Zkeinim:

סלק שנת המבול שאינה נחשבת לפי שנשתנו בה סדרי בראשית

Remove the year of the Mabul, which is not counted because the order of Creation was altered

So a year in which the laws of nature are suspended does not count.

This answers a very similar question to your own:

the Torah says that Noach was 600 at the start of the flood (Bereishis 7:6), and that he lived 350 years after the flood (Bereishis 9:28), and that he lived a total of 950 years (Bereishis 9:29). So what happened to the year of the flood? It isn't counted, as above.

  • 2
    I don’t feel right gaining XP off an answer that’s just copy-pasting from someone else’s hard work, so I’ve marked this community wiki.
    – DonielF
    Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 18:57
  • 3
    Is searching on this site and finding an answer fundamentally different from searching on another site and finding an answer?
    – Alex
    Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 20:18

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