In Beresheit 11:29 it reads:

And Abram and Nahor took themselves wives; the name of Abram's wife was Sarai, and the name of Nahor's wife was Milcah, the daughter of Haran, the father of Milcah and the father of Iscah.”

Who is this Iscah? Is it Sarai/Sarah?


1 Answer 1


The Talmud in Megillah 14a states that Yiskah is Sarah:

ואמר ר' יצחק יסכה זו שרה ולמה נקרא שמה יסכה שסכתה ברוח הקדש שנאמר כל אשר תאמר אליך שרה שמע בקולה ד"א יסכה שהכל סוכין ביופיה

and R. Isaac said [on this]. Yiscah is Sarah; and why was she called Yiscah? Because she discerned [sakethah] by means of the holy spirit, as it is said, In all that Sarah saith unto thee, hearken to her voice. Another explanation is: because all gazed [sakin] at her beauty. (Soncino translation)

This identification is also made explicitly by Targum Pseudo-Jonathan on the verse in question, adding an additional two words at the end of the verse saying "she is Sarai":

ונסיב אברם ונחור להון נשין שום אתת אברם שרי ושום אתת נחור מלכה ברת הרן אבוי דמלכא ואבוי דיסכה היא שרי

Many of the standard biblical commentaries adopt this identification as well, some suggesting that if Yiskah was not Sarah there would be no point of introducing her in this verse.

  • We don't Paskin this way though
    – Double AA
    Oct 15, 2018 at 21:46
  • @DoubleAA Paskin?
    – Alex
    Oct 15, 2018 at 21:53
  • Yup. (I'm loath to post a good answer to such a bad question... Sigh.)
    – Double AA
    Oct 15, 2018 at 21:58
  • 3
    @DoubleAA Which is? You can’t tease us like that, saying you’ve got a good answer and then not tell us what it is. :)
    – DonielF
    Oct 16, 2018 at 8:45
  • 1
    @DoubleAA I finally found what you're talking about, but is it really necessary to be so cryptic? Most people are more familiar with Rashi on Chumash than with the Kesef Mishneh. Before you know kol hatorah kulah you have to start somewhere, and for better or worse the standard place to start is Chumash with Rashi.
    – Heshy
    Oct 16, 2018 at 19:04

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