Questions tagged [history]

Questions related to how something was in the past, and how it's developed since then.

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What is this intro to this rendition of Kah Echsof?

My inability to hear lyrics, and my inabilities in Yiddish require me to ask the fine folk here what exactly is being said in the first words that precede Kah Echsof in this rendition. Could someone ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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Story about moving on in life? [closed]

Is there any story about a tragedy or something bad happening, yet someone moved on in life and continued fulfilling their duties? This can be from the Torah, but preferabally a more modern time story!...
Shalom L'olam's user avatar
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Who is the Pharaoh of the Exodus? [duplicate]

Which Pharaoh was reigning in Egypt during the Exodus according to our mesorah? Do any traditional Jewish sources discuss his name?
Avi Avraham's user avatar
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Does anybody know of a story about how someone lowered his limitations of his knowledge?

The מזרחי says that one should train himself to admit to the limitations of his knowledge, even when he is certain that he is correct. Does anybody have a story of a Jew / Gadol / from the Torah of ...
Shalom L'olam's user avatar
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3 answers
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Does anybody know of a story of a smart aleck?

Does anyone know of a story from תנ"ך \ גמרא \ or a famous Gadol or even some random Jew - where somebody acted like a smart aleck (אובר חכם) / know-it-all and it really caused them to mess up?
Shalom L'olam's user avatar
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What are the oldest manuscripts of the Nevi'im books and specifically Melakhim?

I am especially interested in the oldest version of Melakhim/Kings, including any fragmentary sources like incomplete manuscripts in the dead sea scrolls.
Tym0027's user avatar
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Who is Achashverosh the Mede found in Daniel 9:1?

In Daniel 9:1, Darius the Mede's father is said to be someone called Achashverosh. This is obviously not to be identified with the Achashverosh in Esther, as many meforshim make clear. Is there any ...
Engidu's user avatar
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2 votes
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What else happened in Jewish history on Pesach

I know that many other monumental occasions occurred to happen on Pesach, specifically the first day eg; the birth of Yitzchak, Eisav selling the birthright to Yaakov, parts of the Purim story. Are ...
Eliyahu Kahn's user avatar
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1 answer
121 views

Egyptian slavery: State or Private?

Was the slavery in Egypt only state slavery, or was there also private slavery (as in the USA)?
Yehuda W's user avatar
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What is a frum maskil?

What is a frum maskil? I have seen people use the term to describe certain people from history. What exactly does this description mean? Was it used by any legitimate historians? And can some examples ...
moshechaim's user avatar
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Do we know if the ancient Jews embraced or refused the fourth century BCE observation of Aristotle that the Earth was a globe?

The Catholic Church fought long and hard for a fixed (stationary) earth, with the sky moving around it (a geocentric "universe"). Did it similarly take a long time for the Jews to accept the ...
Ruminator's user avatar
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What is the origin of the division of the Torah into five books [duplicate]

As we start Sefer Vayikra, my chavruta and I have again looked for and been unable to find a satisfactory answer to the question: “What is the origin of the division of the Torah into five books and ...
Edward B's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
118 views

What is the evidence for the Noahide Laws, outside of the Talmud? [closed]

This question may be "closed" but it's not "settled" if you follow the Noahide Laws as taught in Orthodox Judaism. I haven't found any references to the Noahide Laws in non-...
user avatar
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Halachot on geirut during times of persecution

I’ve often heard that a reason that conversions take years and require nearly full observance prior to the tevilah is that this we do not live in a period of persecution, but the relatively light ...
Avi Avraham's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
441 views

Egypt 2309-2362

If Am Israel went out of Egypt in 2448, 210 years after the moment yaakov avinu and the brothers joined yosef, that would be the year 2238. Yosef was 39 years old then and died at the age of 110. ...
Vyacheslav Yosef Dobrovych's user avatar
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1 answer
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The Status of the Deuterocanonical Books

I was wondering to what degree, if any, the Deuterocanonical books of the Septuagint are used in Judaism? I could not find a good answer on this anywhere. Obviously, the books get used in histories of ...
Tim Brown's user avatar
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1 answer
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Sefer Yismach Yisroel digitized

Does anyone know where I can find a pdf or digital version of a modern print of the Sefer Yismach Yisroel (Aleksander Rebbe)? I have tried the version on HebrewBooks, but it doesn't seem to match up ...
dave's user avatar
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Did King David and his men living among the Philistines transition Israel into the iron age?

Apparently, during the reign of Saul, Israel was not yet in its iron age. See passage below, but Israel seems to be in the iron age during King David's reign. Did David's men learn how to work with ...
Perry Webb's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
111 views

What's the source for a rabbinic statement that 'when one country expels the Jews, another lets them in'?

I'm very confident that I once saw a statement from a rabbi (probably in the Medieval era, but maybe later) to the effect that "God has ensured that when one country expels its Jewish population, ...
הנער הזה's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
172 views

History of religiosity decline after haskalah

Is any reason given by religiously Jewish theologians and thinkers for why religiosity and observance amongst Jews declined after the Haskalah? Are there any opinions rabbinic authorities have given ...
Kirk's user avatar
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Free Will after Exodus

There are many sourcese.g. 1,2, that discuss what happened to the world after the splitting of the sea, and the giving of the Torah, implying that the whole world heard what happened. Everyone knew ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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What is the historic background to the first Rashi?

The first Rashi on Genesis says: Rabbi Isaac said: The Torah, which is the Law book of Israel, should have commenced with the verse (Exodus 12:2) “This month shall be unto you the first of the months”...
Erel Segal-Halevi's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
268 views

What does the maid's ration consist of?

In Eshet Chayil (“Woman of Valor”) that is sung on Friday nights is the phrase, "gives food to her household and a ration to her maids". From the wording, I take it that the maid's ration ...
Yehuda W's user avatar
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Does Eilat belong to Bney Israel?

1 Kings 9:26 "King Solomon made a ship in Etzion Geber, which is beside Eloth on the shore of the Red Sea, in the land of Edom." Does Eilat (which spelling is also spelled Eloth) belong to &...
ninamag's user avatar
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1 answer
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What is the etymology of "oy vey"?

I'd always associated "oy vey" with "oy vavoy" in my mind. But I've seen sefarim that use the term אוי ואבוי, and I don't even know how to spell "oy vey" - much less ever ...
Yehuda's user avatar
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Is the original nation of Amalek extinct?

Is it inaccurate to say that the nation of amalek is extinct?
The Targum's user avatar
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1 answer
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Historical references for non-halachic conversion

As of late much ado has been made about in the Torah world about the non-halachic conversion crisis. This is especially controversial in Israel due to halachic problems with gentiles owning land there....
Kirk's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
195 views

Did Ramban ever cite kabbalah books?

Is there any evidence Ramban (Nachmanides) had access to books of kabbalah and did he ever cite them? I believe he is generally seen as Maimonides’ mystical counterpart. Is there any historical record ...
Kirk's user avatar
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Was Judaism originally henotheistic? [duplicate]

I’ve been trying to learn more about Jewish history and better my relationship with Hashem and as I’ve been doing research on Jewish history I’ve come across the notion that the Torah and Judaism as a ...
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Earliest source of 24,000?

There is said to be a connection between the 24k shechemites killed by shimon and Levi, the 24k who died in the plague with the midianites, and the 24k students of Rabbi Akiva. I just noticed that the ...
Clint Eastwood's user avatar
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0 answers
118 views

If we know for certain that certain types of Hebrew pronunciation aren't correct to the biblical standard, why still use them? [duplicate]

This question may be controversial but it isn't meant as an insult to any specific community. In fact, it kind of targets everyone if the hypothesis is correct. It speaks to the reality of the exile ...
Michael's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
151 views

When did the Zohar become near universally accepted

In Jewish history, when did the Zohar become the near universally accepted Sefer it is today? Was it shortly after it was re circulated by Moshe de Leon? Or was it in a later century? What is the ...
Kirk's user avatar
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2 votes
0 answers
72 views

Horaas Shaa (emergency order) of kollel [duplicate]

I've been told in conversation that kollel, i.e. learning for an extended period of time after marriage, was a horaas Shaa — a temporary emergency order of Rabbinical ruling, made to fight the ...
Shababnik's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
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War after the miracle of oil?

One popular explanation for the name Chanukah is that on 25th of Kislev (כ"ה) they had a respite of their enemies (חנו מאויביהם). (Actually I am not so sure about the first source of this either. ...
Binyomin's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
85 views

Are there some humans in history who are an exception to the idea of free will?

We all talk about the idea that God has an ultimate plan and that we are all existing within that plan. That said, humans have free will as we are judged by our actions due to this free will. My ...
Michael's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
1k views

How does a Jewish community recognize a Jewish person they hadn't seen ever before?

Let's say there is a Jewish community where everybody knows each other, for example in a city. Let's say a new Jewish person arrives and manifests their will to get integrated with them. Nobody knows ...
Gasconheart's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
78 views

Did the Israelites know the future?

The Torah was revealed to Israel at a certain point in time, and recounts many significant events that happened after that point. When the Torah was revealed, did the Israelites know about these ...
Maurice Mizrahi's user avatar
3 votes
0 answers
58 views

If Jews conquer a random new land does it become holy like Eretz Yisrael? How might this relate to kibbush yachid? And does kibbush yachid even count?

If Jews conquered New York City let's say does New York City become holy just like Eretz Yisrael? What if a "Jewish king" declared it as a Jewish state? I'm very curious..
Joshua Friedman's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
359 views

Why didn't the Jews of Persia leave after Haman's decree?

After Haman's genocidal edict was sent out to all the people of the Persian kingdom why was there not a mass exodus of Jews to parts of the world not under the dominion of Achashveirosh and his law?
rikitikitembo's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
65 views

רִבּוֹן כָּל הָעוֹלָמִים אֲדוֹן כָּל הַנְּשָׁמוֹת אֲדוֹן הַשָּׁלוֹם - source of this Shabbat prayer

Here is its entry in the open siddur project. The open siddur project demonstrates that the claim that this was composed by Rabbi Joseph of Rashkow, Posen can't be true as it is found in the siddur ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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Rosh Chodesh - importance in history?

In the Wikipedia article on Rosh Chodesh it says that historically it had much more importance, why did it change? Do Rabbinic sources or commentators attest to this? Is there evidence during the ...
Kirk's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
295 views

What happened to King Achashverosh?

All the main characters in the story of Purim were either killed, or raised to a level of authority. additionally, it is mentioned in the megillah what happened to them (Vashti was killed, Haman and ...
The Targum's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
62 views

Do the Hasideans have a connection to the House of David?

What primary sources have scholars examined to investigate potential genealogical ties between the Hasideans and the house of David or other tribes? Does linguistic analysis of the name "Hasid&...
Servant's user avatar
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0 answers
52 views

Confused about the layout of this

Joshua 6:12-13 Speaks about the Kohanim, armed men, and rear guard and how they were ordered when they walked with the Aron. Is there a representation of this actually looked, I'm not sure who was in ...
Bukh's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
646 views

Seeking copy of Torah in Ktav Ivri (Paleo-Hebrew)

Is there a copy of the Torah in Ktav Ivri (Paleo-Hebrew)? If so, is there a copy online? If not, where might I find it in print?
Yehuda W's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
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Is there any special mitzvah connected with the upcoming “March for Israel” rally on November 14 at the National Mall in Washington DC?

Upon reflection, the last time there was a potentially world altering convergence of Jews in the United States was for the Freedom Sunday for Soviet Jewry Rally on December 6, 1987. It was estimated ...
Yaacov Deane's user avatar
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4 votes
6 answers
373 views

Why were the Bnei Yisrael exiled to Egypt?

I'm not asking why they literally went down (e.g. to look for food). I'm asking, what did they do wrong to deserve it. They were the direct descendants of some of the greatest people in all of history ...
Seeker's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
115 views

Slavic People are called K'nan in jewish sources

Why is the slavic languages or people reffered to as Cannanim in Jewish sources? Who is the first to do this? See for instance Minchas Yehuda in Mechokekei Yehuda explaining Rashi on Devarim 3:9 Here. ...
Naftali Tzvi's user avatar
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-2 votes
2 answers
290 views

Why do we follow matrilineal descent of Judaism when there's evidence to suggest that it used to be patrilineal? How to resolve the contradiction?

According to the contemporary scholarship, even though modern Orthodox Judaism follows matrilineal descent, there is evidence to suggest that this was a shift that occurred during the second century, ...
setszu's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
140 views

Sridei Eish changed comment

My rabbi was once reading from a Sridei Eish that discussed dvar Torahs he gave to his kahal in Warsaw on the Parsha every year (which btw where would I find this? I found a Sridei Eish book in my ...
Curious Yid's user avatar
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