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Questions tagged [history]

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

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70 views

Allegory vs. Literalism in Judaism and How to Tell the Difference [duplicate]

In the following article, the author makes a compelling argument for why Judaism doesn't always approach scripture literally. However, although there are many examples throughout the Bible for the use ...
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1answer
1k views

Who First Knew of the Messiah

In Parashah Shemot 4:13, Moses says to G-d, "Send, I pray You, by the hand of whom You will send." On p. 77 of Rabbi M. Schneerson's book "Torah Studies" he explains that midrash (Lekach Tov) ...
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0answers
66 views

What's the source for the Cheirim of York?

Regarding the massacre of the Jews which took place at Cliffords Tower in York, 1190. It is said that as a result of this incident, a cheirem was placed on York forbidding people to sleep there ...
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0answers
40 views

Taking shoes off before closing a deal - is there an history evidence?

In bible (Ruth 4,7) it's written that before closing a deal, it was used that one of the sides took his shoes off: Now this was the manner in former time in Israel concerning redeeming and ...
2
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1answer
52 views

Day of Yosef’s Sale

I saw in a medrash - but can’t recall where - that the brothers sold Yosef on the tenth of Teveis. Does any which medrash I could find this in?
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61 views

Is there a guide of some sort that explains the various differences between different Hasidish communities?

I wanted to know if there was a guide of some sort which clearly defined and explained the various differences between different Hasidic dynasties and communities.
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3answers
998 views

What was the source of Samson's strength?

It’s a popular notion that the source of his strength is his hair, but that doesn’t seem right to me. Most supernatural powers are blessings by God for some purpose. It is known that Samson was a ...
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2answers
120 views

What happened to Joseph's coat of many colors

What happened to Yosef's coat of many colors? I know the brothers gave it to Yakov. But what happened later? Did he have it in Egypt? Do we know?
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25 views

A few questions related to the Knesset Hagdolah and the Sanhedrin

Wikipedia says the Great Assembly was established in 410 BCE, and I'm wondering if that's what the masorah teaches. Wikipedia also mentions that Sanhedrin began to form around 57-55 BCE, and I'm also ...
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1answer
70 views

The beginning of public charity

In the Torah, charity is a private matter. Each person has an obligation to help the poor in various ways, for example, by leaving some wheat on the ground, leaving some fruits on the trees, giving ...
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1answer
63 views

Empirical sources that “Batei Midrash” existed prior to Chanukkah events [closed]

In anticipation of Chanukah, we had a discussion about the impact of the Chashmonayim dynasty on Judaism, and somebody presented an idea that although they did fight for the continuation of the Jewish ...
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53 views

What specifically was the ancient Jewish practice of rubbing an infant's throat?

The Jewish Encyclopedia article on "Consecration" says that the later "rubbing on" of oil aka "anointing" has roots in the practice of rubbing an infant's throat in preparation for receiving a mother'...
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2answers
133 views

Is there an official haggadah?

Is there an official haggadah? How does one version of a haggadah have authority over another? Is there a most popular one, a controversial one?
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2answers
166 views

Was Rabban Yochanan Ben Zakkai a priest? And was he Nasi of a sanhedrin?

Was Rabban Yochanan Ben Zakkai a priest? And was he Nasi of a sanhedrin? I ask, because I read here that he was nasi of the sanhedrin from the years 70-80 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sanhedrin ...
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1answer
78 views

What does מצלאים mean? What was said?

In O"C 288:10 the Shulchan Aruch states: נרדף מפני רוח רעה שאמרו לאו דוקא דה"ה לכל חולי שיש בו סכנת היום זועקים ומתחננין וכן נהגו לומר מצלאים בשבת על חולים המסוכנים סכנות היום:‏ הגה וכן מותר ...
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0answers
55 views

How did the bible and Chachamim know the time of Chatzot?

In many places in the bible (e.g. here) as well as in the Mishna (e.g.Berakhot 1,1) it's written that some things happened on Chatzot (midnight point-חצות הלילה) or some Mitzva should be done not late ...
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58 views

When, why and who originated Chevruta style studying?

From reading various stories mentioned in the mishnah, it seems that students studied directly from their rav. I assume that they reviewed what they studied, and, perhaps, discussed ideas with each ...
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1answer
51 views

Identifying the author Toras Yekusiel

I recently came across this teaching: [in footnote Aleph.] http://hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=3751&st=&pgnum=11 To summarize: during the time when the Vilna Gaon made his cherem ...
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2answers
124 views

History of Kabbalah

Has anyone attempted to write a historical sketch of the history of the shalsheles HaKabbalah (which, in this instance, I use to refer to Toras HaSod)? In other words, what was megale to Moshe Rabbenu,...
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1answer
59 views

Does the torah prohibit the consumption of Raw Meat for everyone?

Backstory I am a Noachide who started to experiment with a raw meat diet, after watching videos such as this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-cuT7q1dZ4 It has certainly peaked my interest, and ...
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2answers
109 views

Source for Rashi's claim that some nations worshiped dust?

Rashi (Gen 18,4) on "יֻקַּח־נָא מְעַט־מַיִם וְרַחֲצוּ רַגְלֵיכֶם׃" says: כַּסָּבוּר שֶׁהֵם עַרְבִיִּים שֶׁמִּשְׁתַּחֲוִים לַאֲבַק רַגְלֵיהֶם He thought they were Arabians who worship the dust of ...
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1answer
124 views

What Rabbis originally supported and opposed Rambam's 13 principles and why?

I heard the when Rambam presented his 13 principles the opinions divided pretty sharply between the Sefardic Rabbis that openly supported it and the Ashkenazi (Rabaney Tzarfat) that opposed it for ...
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0answers
34 views

Why are Creation and the Mabul not commemorated independently?

Our calendar marks days and dates important to our existence but they all start from the Exodus from Mitzrayim which makes sense because A -- that's when we started fixing a calendar that related to ...
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1answer
50 views

What was G-d's plan in having 20 generations before Abraham appears?

I'm trying to understand G-d's plan for creating wicked and sinful humans, waiting for 1600 years/10 generations for them to sin, wiping them out completely, then waiting for another 400 years for the ...
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1answer
43 views

What sons of Noach are the nations disposed of by Edom, Ammon, and Moav descended from?

Edom disposed of the Horites, Moav and Ammon the Rephaim/Emim/Zamzumim etc. (Devarim 2:10-12) What sons of Noach are these peoples descended from? If they’re giants (Emim/Zamzumim), are they ...
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0answers
22 views

Ramifications of lack of Brachah for the tribe of Shimon

I have a hard time understanding Moses' Brochos to the tribes and how it correlates to the actual course of history. As I can see, the interpreters felt the same problem and tried to pick single ...
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1answer
191 views

Who was the first Jew who was called with two names? [closed]

Who was the first Jew who was called with two names? I'm not asking "Who was the fist Jew who had two names?" like Yaakov [Israel] or Benyamin [Ben-Oni] had, I'm asking who was the first Jew who got "...
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3answers
155 views

Was there a tradition that Jewish girls desired to be the mother of the messiah?

Are there any Jewish historical traditions that young Jewish girls often hoped and desired to be the mother of the messiah? For this question, I am interested in the historical time period of the 1st ...
3
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0answers
55 views

Different versions of Haazinu song structure

I have heard (in conversation) that there are early Torah scrolls, or sources mentioning this, that don't follow the two-column Haazinu that is now universally written; but rather, something similar ...
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0answers
94 views

Source of opinion that Talmud Yerushalmi was corrupted by Karaites

In the entry for Talmud Bavli/Yerushalmi in Chida's Shem Hagedolim Hashalem (c.1800, the older versions do not have this paragraph), he references a theory from maskilim of his time that the Rabbis ...
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0answers
49 views

Do scriptures mention the presence of the Egyptians in the Holy Land after Yehoshua's conquer?

Archaeological sources (only an example) mention such presence/influence in the time of the conquer which gradually faded before David's Kingdom. Is it mentioned anywhere in the Nac"h that the ...
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1answer
58 views

Four Minim at the time of the Great Revolt

This is a 5 Agorot coin bearing a copy of a coin from the 4th year of the Great Revolt (70AD) that pictures the 4 Minim: I can spot two oddities relative to what's commonly accepted: there are two ...
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1answer
92 views

How Many vav Hahipuchs in each of the 24 books of Tenach

How Many vav Hahipuchs (Conversive vav) are in each of the 24 books of Tenach compared with the number of letters / verses in that book. As far as I know they are only in Tenach rather than Mishna or ...
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1answer
73 views

When Did Sukkot Lose Its Status As “THE” Hag? [closed]

In the Torah it seems like a few of the Hagim get some special status as being particularly significant. Pesah gets a lot of attention and a lot of rituals, Rosh Hashannah seems barely worth ...
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1answer
147 views

Did the Sadducees get anything right?

The Sadducee-Pharisee split probably began around 150 B.C.E and disappeared after the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 C.E. As a result, the Karaites (9th-century) adopted many Sadducee-ideas ...
2
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1answer
43 views

What is meant by “synagogue” in the Temple in Sota 7.8?

THe Mishna (Sotah 7.8) describes the order of transferring a Torah scroll to the King for reading on Hakhel: חַזַּן הַכְּנֶסֶת נוֹטֵל סֵפֶר תּוֹרָה וְנוֹתְנָהּ לְרֹאשׁ הַכְּנֶסֶת, וְרֹאשׁ ...
2
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1answer
137 views

Was Hakhel performed in separation of men and women?

Mitzvat Hakhel requires the presence of men, women, and children in the Azara (135x135 Ama incl. 4 Lishachot), with a tremendous density (for 600K grown-up men it's around 4M people per 4,000 sq.m.), ...
3
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1answer
46 views

Heter Bamos - When?

When did the heter bamos (the time when it was permitted for klal yisrael to build their own bamos) begin and end?
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2answers
82 views

What argument came first - Tanuro Shel Akhnai or Maariv Chovah? [duplicate]

What argument happened first - Tanuro Shel Akhnai (B"M 59b) or Maariv Chovah or Reshut (Brochos 27b) In the former, R"Y stood against R"E (backed by R"G) and in the later the same story happened to ...
5
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0answers
44 views

How many fled to the Cities of Refuge?

Do we know how many people (accidental murderers) took advantage of the Cities of Refuge (Deuteronomy 4:41-43)? Perhaps the size of the cities would put an upper limit on that number, so do we know ...
3
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1answer
90 views

Did synagogues exist between the 1st and 2nd temple period? [duplicate]

I'm unaware of the existence of any synagogues having existed between the 1st and 2nd Temple Period. It seems to have begun only after the 2nd Temple existed. Between the two Temples, from what I'm ...
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2answers
118 views

“Hanukkah 8th day/Tevet 3/New Years Day” triple coincidences - What makes them so Rare?

I very recently became aware that Hanukkah 8th day sometimes (but rarely) falls on Tevet 3. What causes this to happen? At the same time, I also noticed that when Hanukkah 8th day/Tevet 3 happen ...
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0answers
98 views

Veracity of the Oral Torah [closed]

A Christian blogger commented: Rabbinic Judaism also has some relatively unconvincing claims of oral transmission from the past.  It claims that its interpretations of the Torah (which are compiled ...
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0answers
90 views

When did Jewish court systems replace Yisro's “chiefs” system?

The Jews in the desert implemented Yisro's "chiefs" system to act as judges, but we know at some point the nation transitioned to the courts system with judges of 3, 23, 71, etc. At what point and ...
1
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1answer
40 views

Tosfot quoted Rabbi Yom Tov Myiuni

For the first time I seen in Tosfot Yevamot 57b הרב רבי יום טוב מיוני I didn't find in Wikipedia about him. Does someone know who is this Chacham, what is his place in Tosfot constellation?
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1answer
144 views

Did Rav Akiva turn on Bar Kochba?

I once read that Rav Akiva had a falling out with Bar Kochba before the revolt ended due to the latter refusing to accept the Samaritans as friends. Others say it was because of R. Elazar HaModii's ...
5
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1answer
216 views

When was the tzitz lost?

I was reading a translation of Josephus many years ago that mentioned the tzitz (the crown of the high priest with Qdosh Yisrael engraved on it). The commentary to this Josephus said that the tzitz ...
2
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1answer
84 views

How many kids did the Tannaim and Amoraim have?

The Gemmorah (Yevomos 62b) brings a statement by R'Yehoshua: ...דתניא: רבי יהושע אומר נשא אדם אשה בילדותו ישא אשה בזקנותו היו לו בנים בילדותו יהיו לו בנים בזקנותו שנא' (קהלת יא, ו): "בבקר זרע את ...
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7answers
228 views

Websites or books about the Torah and history of the world

I am looking for recommendations of good websites and books that talk about various ways of understanding the 'conflicts' between the Torah and a modern understanding of the age of the universe, the ...
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0answers
61 views

What would the status of the “Book of the Wars of God” be today?

The Torah makes reference to a Book of the Wars of God (Bamidbar 21:10-16). According to most opinions this was an actual written work which has been lost over time. It is not clear (at least to me) ...