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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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How did the Rambam write about kidney removal?

From this answer: The Rambam (Bias Mikdash 6:7) states clearly that a Kohain whos Kidney was removed is NOT considered a Baal Mum. אֵין פּוֹסֵל בָּאָדָם אֶלָּא מוּמִין שֶׁבְּגָלוּי. אֲבָל ...
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4answers
248 views

Have there been instances where decisions in the Sanhedrin or Rabbinical decisions concerning Jewish practice have been reversed upon later review?

I was curious if there were examples or instances where one generation of Rabbis established an interpretation of the law which was followed accordingly, only to have another generation of Rabbis ...
3
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1answer
139 views

Did the high priest have a rope tied to him while he performed his duties?

There is a tradition many have heard that says the high priest had a rope tied to him on the day of atonement so that if he became incapacitated while in the most holy with the ark he could be ...
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55 views

Online Depictions of the Colorful Second Temple

Are there any artistic depictions, available online, of the multicolored appearance of the Second Temple, based on archaeological finds (see, e.g., here), or, e.g., the depiction of the blue/green and ...
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1answer
132 views

XX century Aliyah, State of Israel, and righteousness of the Jews

(please excuse if the title does not capture the question. Feel free to edit) On the one hand, during the first half of the XX century, a significant number of Jews returned to the land of Israel (...
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2answers
79 views

What is the issue with Rabbi Tarfon's redeeming of first-borns in Bechoros 51?

Bechoros 51b: וכך היה מנהגו של רבי טרפון שהיה נוטל ומחזיר וכששמעו חכמים בדבר אמרו קיים זה הלכה זו הלכה זו ותו לא אלא קיים זה אף הלכה זו This was how Rabbi Tarfon [the Kohen] used to deal with ...
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46 views

Translation (or searchable version) of *Sefer Elim* of Rabbi Joseph Solomon Delmedigo

Does there exist any translation of the Sefer Elim of Rabbi Joseph Solomon Delmedigo into a European language? If not, does there at least exist a text-version of the original Hebrew version (all I ...
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1answer
83 views

When did the daily sacrifices cease being offered in temple?

The daily sacrifices which were carried out in the temple did they cease after the destruction of the temple(AD70) or they had already ceased well before that. If they had ceased before the ...
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0answers
46 views

What was a rabbinic מעיל משי?

In the book מנהגים דק"ק וורמיישא, one of the first simonim notes that the rov and chazzan in Worms should wear a Seidenmantel (He: מעיל משי), which the notes explain was rabbinical garb in those days. ...
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85 views

What were the scrolls that the Jews had in Egypt fortelling of the forthcoming redemption?

I was reading Rav Melamed's Peninei Halacha, the Shabbat volume, and on page 5 he mentions that when the Jews were slaves in Egypt they had scrolls (megillot) in their possession telling of the ...
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91 views

Why aren’t they any statues attributed to Moshe when he was prince of Egypt? [closed]

Why aren’t they any statues attributed to Moshe when he was prince of Egypt? Did the Egyptians destroy them after the exodus?
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0answers
137 views

Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch and Chassidism

Does anyone know if there is any historical record of Rabbi Hirsh's perspectives on Chassidism? The movement was obviously not very present where he was in Germany, but given that he was in contact ...
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1answer
66 views

Shemini Atzeret - a “Regel Bifney Atzmo” dispute

There seems to be some disagreement about the nature of Shemini Atzeret and the implications of its being called a "Regel Bifnei Atzmo" (a stand-alone festival). But I assume that, because there are ...
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0answers
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What is the history and origin of the Etz Chayim symbol and the 10 Sefiroth?

This question is related to the question 'what is the origin of the Hebrew language?' since Hebrew is a key part of the Kabbalistic Tree of Life. However, the question of Hebrew language origins seems ...
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2answers
187 views

Cylindrical Tefillin

The wikipedia page on tefillin shows cylindrical tefillin found in the Cairo geniza, with reference to this image from here: The source from the wikipedia page cites this: Kiell, Norman (1967). The ...
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2answers
136 views

What is the history and purpose behind Teki'ah Gedolah?

I am familiar with the origin and reasoning of the "regular" Tekiah blast that surrounds the shevarim, teru'ah and shevarim-teru'ah sounds. What is the origin of the teki'ah gedolah in terms of its ...
2
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1answer
134 views

Why the Jerusalem Talmud is not mentioned in the Bavli?

The JT was compiled some 150-200 years before the Bavli (WIKI), so the most of the disputes in the Bavli took place when the JT was already finished. The Rabbis (Tannayim and Amorayim) traveled all ...
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3answers
221 views

Could Jesus have been a Rabbi?

Jesus was called a Rabbi during a time in history when being a Rabbi really meant something. He lived during the time of semicha, and his responses are often Rabbinic in nature. And so this begs the ...
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1answer
111 views

History of chattan & kallah classes

A common practice in some segments of today's Jewish world is for brides and grooms to attend "Chattan/kallah classes" where the attendees receive instruction and advice on relationship dynamics and ...
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1answer
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When did Ma'ariv stop becoming 'optional'?

It's a bit of fun Jewish trivia that Ma'ariv was originally 'optional' (see for example here, and Halachic ramifications of its' original optionality here), but at some point became 'accepted' by ...
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When were the current Sidra breaks established? [duplicate]

The Gemara (Megillah 29b) relates that in Eretz Yisrael, they would finish the Torah every three years, while in Bavel, they would do so every year. In practice, it seems universally accepted to ...
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2answers
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According to the Rambam, why is Achiya considered Dovid Hamelech's student?

The Rambam writes (in his Introduction to Mishneh Torah): ואחיה השילוני מיוצאי מצרים היה ולוי היה ושמע ממשה והיה קטן בימי משה והוא קיבל מדוד ובית דינו. Achiah of Shiloh was one of those who ...
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0answers
57 views

Zohar about the 18-19th century [duplicate]

I saw a quote one time--I believe it was in an Artscroll sefer--from the Zohar about how there would be tremendous spiritual and cultural revelations that would occur around the 18th-19th centuries. (...
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1answer
76 views

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
509 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
125 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
220 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?
5
votes
1answer
86 views

Who laid the megalithic foundation stones under the wailing wall?

These stones under the Western Wall are of impeccable craftsmanship and required seemingly superhuman handling: My thoughts run to: Ezra-Nehemiah Solomon-Hiram Herod Do we know?
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1answer
106 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
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1answer
145 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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69 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
148 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
114 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
88 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 ?
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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
109 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
70 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 ...
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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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votes
1answer
52 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 ...
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1answer
73 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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1answer
106 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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2answers
69 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
71 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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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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3answers
104 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
126 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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231 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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65 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 ...