In Mesores haShas (printed in the margins of the Vilna Shas), is there any order to the sequence of quoted masekhtas? For example, on Sanhedrin 105b, a story is related that concerns the length of time for which God is angry every day. There is a footnote to Mesores haShas, which cites (and in this order):

Pesachim 50b Arakhin 16b Sotah 22b and 47a Horayos 10b Nazir 23b

Pesachim is in Moed. Arakhin is in Kodshim. Sotah is in Nashim. Horayos is in Nezikin. Nazir is in Nashim (again). Is there a method to this order?

Seeing as it is clearly not according to the standard order of sedarim (not least because the two masekhtas from Nashim are separated by one from Nezikin), is it in accordance with something more meaningful? Is the first one in the list the primary sugya, which treats of this subject at the greatest length? And is this an implied order to the sequence in which the author of Mesores haShas expects people to encounter these sugyas?

  • Is it the same across printings?
    – WAF
    Nov 20, 2018 at 10:03
  • @WAF Good question - I don’t know.
    – Shimon bM
    Nov 20, 2018 at 10:14
  • 2
    Assuming these glosses were based on the author's own notes, my guess is the sequence is based on the order they popped into his head.
    – user6591
    Nov 20, 2018 at 11:03
  • Please check Oz V'Hadar printing to see if they changed the ordering. It might be a printer's error, or alternatively, the printer forgot it and it had to be added in later.
    – user18155
    Nov 22, 2018 at 8:56


You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .