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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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1answer
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Was There a Specific Location that the Babylonian Talmud was Written

The exact (think GPS) location of many biblical sites are known. We know exectly where Abraham bound Issac and suspect that is the same spot where the Holy of Holies was. Some of the ancient sites (or ...
6
votes
1answer
494 views

Date of the Akeida?

Are there sources in our tradition which discuss the Hebrew date of Akeidas Yitzchak? The fact that we read the Akeida on Rosh Hashana or, properly, every day suggests to me that the "real" date is ...
3
votes
2answers
120 views

Why there's no Mishnah Bavli?

The question might seem odd, I admit, but In the beginning pages of the Bavli Sanhedrin (5a), it states that the power of the ראש גלותא in Babylon was bigger than that of נשיא in the land of Israel in ...
5
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2answers
204 views

Did the Ramchal have a beard?

It seems to be common knowledge that the Ramchal did not wear a beard (see here for instance). What sources are there, if any, that say the Ramchal, in fact, did not wear a beard?
4
votes
1answer
74 views

Who laid the megalithic foundation stones under the wailing wall?

These stones under the Western Wall are of impeccable craftsmanship and required superhuman handling: My thoughts run to: Ezra-Nehemiah Solomon-Hiram Herod Do we know?
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1answer
104 views

Belief before 30 CE, that a prophet other than the Messiah or Elijah would appear?

Was there a Jewish belief prior to 30CE that a prophet other than Elijah would appear along with the Messiah? If so, what evidence is there for it, what were the details of this belief, what ...
2
votes
1answer
139 views

Since when was a kippah worn? [duplicate]

Paul, being educated as a Pharisee in Jerusalem by Gamaliel, writes: "Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head" (1 Cor. 11,4). Also, he find this so natural that he ...
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0answers
30 views

When were tefillin worn prior to the “standardization” of Tefillat Shacharit? [duplicate]

I'm making a few assumptions in asking my question. If they're incorrect, please comment. Tefillat Shacharit is a substitute for the Shacharit sacrifice that was brought in the Temple. I have also ...
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0answers
66 views

poetical works authored by women?

Are there any examples of songs, poems, piyyutim or kinnot from the time of the first temple until the 1700's (c.e.) which were authored by women and were adopted by traditional/orthodox communities. ...
2
votes
1answer
144 views

Is Pirkei DeRebbe Eliezer the earliest Torah she'be'al'peh to be written down?

The Radal mentions that Rebbe Eliezer ben Herkinus's talmidim wrote down the Pirkei DeRebbe Eliezer. Would that make it the earliest book of Torah she'be'al'peh to be written?
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1answer
111 views

What is the earliest mention of the Zohar being explicitly cited in Jewish Literature?

What is the earliest mention of the Zohar being explicitly cited in Jewish texts? I've asked some friends but we were unable to determine where it was.
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2answers
85 views

Who were the leaders of the Jewish religion between Ezra and the 1st Zugot?

Who were the leaders of the Jewish religion between Ezra and the 1st Zugot ? Do we have a list for that ?
3
votes
1answer
1k views

What kind of tree or bush was the “burning bush” of Moses?

I am looking for the kind of tree/bush for the burning bush of Moses. What are the kinds mentioned by Rabbis? I read before that some Rabbis identified the tree with the Sidr Tree. I need to know ...
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0answers
95 views

Hebrew names and English names [closed]

I have just visited my great grandfather's grave and discovered his Hebrew name was Yehuda Leib, yet in England he was known as Louis Goodman. Is there a connection between the names? He moved to ...
2
votes
1answer
68 views

Talmudic Source Mechitzah?

What's the source in the Talmud for the mechitzah? I have yet to run across it. Also as an aside, I've been to a lot of Synagogues from Talmudic times, and I have yet to find any mechitzah type of ...
2
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1answer
44 views

Source that Tisha B'av is the day of mourning for all tragedies, even if they did not fall out then?

I have heard (in the context of when Jews should mourn for those lost in the Holocaust), that Tish'a B'av is the day on which we mourn all tragedies, even those that did not occur on that day. What ...
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4answers
2k views

What sad/terrible events actually took place on the 9th of Av?

I have heard that Tish'a B'av is a date on which many bad things happened to the Jewish people, and that is why we mourn on that day. What are they? (Sources please...)
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1answer
50 views

How did shomer Yisroel become daily?

How did show Shomer Israel become part of our daily tachnun? Clearly it happened in the 1800's. Prior to that it was just for slichos and Mondays and Thursdays (see magen avraham תרפה;ב....the very ...
5
votes
1answer
70 views

When were these fasts observed?

The Tur (Orach Chayim 580), quoting the Bahag (Laws of the Ninth of Av), gives a list of days on which to fast. This list is copied or mentioned by some other rishonim (as quoted in the footnote to ...
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vote
1answer
96 views

How did men used to shave their beards before electric razors? [closed]

Back then I assume the only way to cut a beard was with a straight blade--how did Jewish men shave?
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votes
2answers
65 views

Fourth Kingdom is Aram/Yishmael

Someone pointed out to me the commentary of Ibn Ezra to Daniel 2:39. In that verse Daniel is understood to be describing the ארבע מלכיות or the four kingdoms. I always understood these four kingdoms ...
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1answer
68 views

What is the logic underlying the Mishna's chapter breaks

The Mishna was separated into chapters by R Yehuda HaNasi. I see that at times there is a chapter break in the middle of a topic (today's example: Menachot chapter 1 & 2 - more examples here). It ...
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vote
1answer
43 views

At what stage of Joshua's leadership did he become Judge?

The Seder Olam states that Joshua was a judge over Israel for 28 years. (Seder Olam 12) We know that he succeeded Moses 40 years after leaving Egypt (Joshua 1:1), and that he died at the age of 110. (...
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votes
3answers
102 views

R' Mordochai Benet's re-interment

Wikipedia notes that R' Mordochai Benet, the Mähren Landesrabbiner (Chief Rabbi of Moravia) notes that was temporarily interred in Lichtenberg prior to being re-interred in Nikolsburg, according to ...
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2answers
124 views

Rashi Biographical Details [closed]

On Avodah Zarah 75a (dibur hamtchil "ולא פליגי"), Shabbos 85b ("בנוטה שורה לכאן ושורה לכאן"), Sukkah 40a ("ה"ג עצים דהסקה תנאי היא"), and Makkot 19b ("רישא במעשר שני טמא") there are personal comments ...
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2answers
186 views

Bish'vili nivra ha'olam/Anochi afar Papers

Who was the person who would walk around with 2 papers in his pocket, one of which said "bishvili nivra ha'olam" ("the world was created for me") and the other "anochi afar va'eifer" ("I am dirt and ...
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votes
0answers
58 views

Women and the egel

The Leviim were rewarded for not participating in the egel (golden calf) by replacing the buchorim (firstborn) as the workers in the mishkan. But the women also did not participate in the calf. What ...
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votes
0answers
41 views

Whey in butter (Chema't akkum)?

I recently read a responsum from R' Tam (brought in Shaarei Dura 78) where he discusses butter that was mixed with whey. While he permits regular butter from a gentile for consumption he nevertheless ...
6
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0answers
82 views

Unknown La'az in Teshuvot Rashi

In the Elfenbein (1943) edition of Teshuvot Rashi, in the teshuvot from Rashi to the rabbis of Auxerre ('סימן ג), Rashi writes "לשון דמות צלם" is "אאמיינדליי" in la'az. Elfenbein writes in his ...
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0answers
100 views

What once made the Karaite movement popular?

Karaites appeared and became numerous about 1,000 years ago but have since largely disappeared. What is it about Karaite philosophy or practice that made it popular a thousand years ago?
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1answer
61 views

When was the pagination of the Talmud begun and finalized and by whom? [duplicate]

Early editions of the Talmud did not have page numbers. (Early commentators give citations to chapters.) When did page numbering begin and, if today's page numbering differs, when was the page ...
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0answers
53 views

How could this ever be true? [duplicate]

I am new here. Infact I got an account here to genuinely find an answer, how could all this be true right at the very beginning? Pardon my mistakes because I am not jewish. Apologies in advance if I ...
1
vote
1answer
83 views

Why did the Bavli form of weekly Torah reading become the standard?

My understanding of the Torah reading cycle - In Israel, they originally had a triennial cycle, and in Bavel, they had an annual cycle. At some point, the Bavli (annual) cycle became the standard. (...
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1answer
80 views

When the Mishnayos were compiled, were they compiled into the perakim we have today, or were they just compiled into masechtos?

Many times throughout Shas, it seems as if the Perakim are sliced in completely arbitrary places. To name a few examples: In Maseches Shabbos, the halachos of Tzad, trapping, are discussed in 13:5-14:...
3
votes
1answer
134 views

What mitzvos did Adam have in Gan Eden?

Which mitzvos did Adam have before eating from the tree? Posible options: 1 - Not to eat from the tree. 2 - (the above +) to have children. 8 - (the above +) 6 mitvos 9 - (the above +) tzedoko
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votes
2answers
207 views

What is the explanation for the discrepancy between Seder Olam's chronology and that of historical scholarship?

Rabbi Harav Yaakov Medan (etzion.org.il/en/chapter-12b-daniels-prayer-continued) states: 'According to historical scholarship, the second year of the Persian Darius, when the rebuilding of the Second ...
5
votes
1answer
145 views

Which Seforim is Rav Chaim of Volozhin speaking of?

In the beginning of Sha'ar Daled of Nefesh HaChaim, Rav Chaim of Volozhin criticises those people who do not engage in classical learning, but instead spend time studying "Sifrei Yirah U'Mussar." ...
5
votes
1answer
75 views

Why did standing on one's feet become the posture for prayer?

When one reads about people praying to G-d throughout Tanac"h, we rarely discover them standing to pray. Most of the time they are kneeling, prostrating or falling on their faces. We see that when ...
5
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1answer
141 views

Who is Queen Cleopatra in Sanhedrin 90b?

The Gemara in Sanhedrin 90b relates: (Source from Sefaria.org) (Partial Quote) .....שאלה קליאופטרא מלכתא את ר"מ Queen Cleopatra asked Rabbi Meir..... My Question: What Queen Cleopatra was ...
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180 views

Why do Ashkenazi Orthodox Jews Chant With Reform Trope?

From what I've been able to gather the most popular/standard/traditional te'amim melodies were collected, blended, and then published by Abrahim Binder, a reform Jew. Source: http://www.milkenarchive....
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3answers
131 views

Looking for source for history of Temple sacrifices?

Not sure the title has a clear meaning to the good people here -- if it can be edited to read better with respect to this site, please do so! I am reading the Christian Bible and seeing many ...
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1answer
77 views

“Evil Inclination” History

I'm a Christian who wants to know more about history of the Jewish concept of "The Evil Inclination". (I find myself often arguing against saint Augustine's Original Sin theology and the more early ...
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0answers
70 views

Who organized the Haftarot and when?

If I'm not mistaken, Masechet Megillah mentions a few haftarot, I think, mainly for Yom Tov. I don't recall much mentioned about the weekly Shabbat haftarot. In most Chumashim, I noticed that there ...
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1answer
224 views

Why would the Belzer Rebbe usually shake hands with a towel wrapped around his hand?

Jewish Educational Media publishes a series of videos about the Lubavitcher Rebbe. The series is called Living Torah. Disc 34, Program 135, contains an interview with Rabbi Chatzkel Besser, [about ...
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1answer
88 views

Giving up ones life על קידוש ה׳ not to transgress גילוי עריות

Are there any instances in Shas (Bavli or Yerushalmi) or even records of history where a group or even an individual gave up their life not to transgress גילוי עריות, Adultery?
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1answer
196 views

How long did the Second Temple stand?

The classic Jewish sources (Seder Olam, accepted and cited Bavli in several locations; for example, see the discussion on Avoda Zara 9a) state that Bayis Sheini (the Second Temple) stood for 420 years....
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1answer
114 views

how old was shaul when he became king?

Shaul had Yonatan and Michal who were around Dovid's age. so how old is Shaul? I could not find any meforesh that said anything about it. asking on a Jewish perspective. thank!
6
votes
3answers
172 views

Determining trup, without trup

It was told in the name of Rabbi Heinenman of Baltimore, that there is such a concept of determining trup (טעמי מקרא) based on some sort of system. Meaning if I knew of such a system, and I saw this ...
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1answer
50 views

Sefirah prohibitions

When did the Jews first observe laws of mourning over the death of Rabbi Akiva's students? Did it commence the first year after the death of the students or was it instituted at a later period in ...
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1answer
66 views

Were Prophets originally called “Seers”?

In Samuel 1 9:9 it says: לְפָנִ֣ים ׀ בְּיִשְׂרָאֵ֗ל כֹּֽה־אָמַ֤ר הָאִישׁ֙ בְּלֶכְתּוֹ֙ לִדְר֣וֹשׁ אֱלֹהִ֔ים לְכ֥וּ וְנֵלְכָ֖ה עַד־הָרֹאֶ֑ה כִּ֤י לַנָּבִיא֙ הַיּ֔וֹם יִקָּרֵ֥א לְפָנִ֖ים הָרֹאֶֽה׃...