Questions tagged [history]

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

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2answers
154 views

Why so much critique of the ibn Ezra?

Throughout Chumash, the Ramba"n goes after the ibn Ezra. The Ramba"n says in his introduction to the Chumash that his attitude toward the ibn Ezra is "תוכחה גלויה ואהבה מסותרת". In ...
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1answer
90 views

Ma'ayan HaChochmah - Written by Moshe?

I found the book Ma'ayan HaChochmah in many editions, all of which are attributed to Moshe Rabbeinu. Here are some examples: 1, 2, 3, 4. What is the history of this book? Is it unanimous that it was ...
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1answer
69 views

Why did Egyptian and Babylonian officials change Jewish names?

For example, in Divrei Hayamim Beth 36:4, the king of Egypt crowned Eliakim over Judah and Jerusalem, and he changed his name to Jehoiakim. In Melachim Beth 24:17 the king of Babylonia crowned ...
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2answers
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G-D’ Instructions: Why didn’t G-D teach the ancient Israelites to have more respect for women? [closed]

Why didn’t G-D teach the ancient Israelites to have more respect for women. HE never reproached men for have multiple wives and concubines. He never reproached people for giving their children away to ...
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1answer
86 views

Were there insects in the garden of eden?

I was recently thinking, we create comfort for ourselves by keeping nature at bay. Flies and mosquitos are annoying, would Adam and Eve have thought the same? There were certainly serpents, maybe ...
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1answer
87 views

Rabbinic influences in the Karaite Siddur

The KJA Siddur appears to have a number of instances of influence from the Rabbinic liturgy. Some examples of note, based on a brief perusal: Page 2: The brachah on tzitzis. (The questions there ...
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1answer
95 views

Censored letters of the book Peri Haarets

I am looking for an uncensored version of the letters, from which we have a censored version in the standard versions of the Peri Haarets. I would appreciate some links. Note. Peri Haarets is the ...
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1answer
101 views

Migdal Bavel during the times of the Gemara?

In the Gemara Sanhedrin 109a, it states R. Yonatan said: A third of the tower was burnt, a third sunk, and a third is still standing. Rav said: The atmosphere of the tower causes forgetfulness. ...
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38 views

What is the original source for the story of the writting of the Akdamus?

the story is discussed in this question What exactly is the story behind the person who wrote the Akdomus (said on Shavous) where a source is give as this book http://www.hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?...
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3answers
126 views

Reason why Ruth the Moabite converted

What was the reason why Ruth converted to Judaism? Was it love of Naomi or love of Hashem or both?
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1answer
145 views

Midah Keneged Midah in the Punishment of an Entire Tzibur [i.e, Covid-19]

I was recently reading a controversial article on The Lakewood Scoop claiming that Coronavirus (Covid-19) is a punishment for the fact that we expelled anti-vaxxers from our Yeshivos and Mosdos ...
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138 views

Why are there no high priests today?

What happened in history so that there are no-longer high priests? If succession for the role is by descendant of Aaron, what conditions prevent a new high priest from existing.
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Were the Essenes considered apikorisim?

The ancient Essenes are known as being an highly Ascetic sect, with many Mystical and Monastical practices. In fact, Rav Aryeh Kaplan seems to imply that much of our Kabala actually originated from ...
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58 views

Help trying to find the lifespan of an ancient rabbi

Zohar (Vayikra 10a) quotes a sefer by R. Hamnunab [Hanunah] Sabah, a sage of Second Beit HaMikdash times. Thing is, I can't pin-point the lifespan. Can someone help me with this? Toda.
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1answer
108 views

Why did Jews stop saying RaḤmana

At the times of the Mishna and Gemara, one of the more commonly used names to refer to God among Jews was RaḤmana, literally the Merciful. It seems like this was widely used as Hashem is today. When ...
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1answer
95 views

Who was the Megilat Esther?

As in the commentary on the Rambam’s Sefer HaMitzvot. Do we know this person’s identity? Or even when this person lived?
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Who is Artaxerxes of Ezra 4?

Ezra 4:4-24: 4. Thereupon the people of the land undermined the resolve of the people of Judah, and made them afraid to build. 5. They bribed ministers in order to thwart their plans all the years of ...
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1answer
365 views

Do Karaite Jews believe in Mashiach?

I was curious about where Karaite Jews sit on the topic of Mashiach considering they reject Rabbinical Judaism and only accept the original Five Books as their standard. The vast majority of the ...
2
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1answer
56 views

The latest date in Tanach

As far as I can tell, the latest date mentioned in Tanach is in Nechemiah 13:6: כִּ֡י בִּשְׁנַת֩ שְׁלֹשִׁ֨ים וּשְׁתַּ֜יִם לְאַרְתַּחְשַׁ֤סְתְּא מֶֽלֶךְ־בָּבֶל֙ בָּ֣אתִי אֶל־הַמֶּ֔לֶךְ for in ...
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1answer
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Why are only 4 Persian kings mentioned?

Daniel 11:2 And now, I shall tell you the truth. Behold, three more kings will arise in Persia, and the fourth one will become very wealthy. And when he becomes strong with his wealth, he will ...
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1answer
65 views

Did the Talmidim of Rebbi Akiva die by joining the rebellion with Bar Kochva? [duplicate]

I have heard from an Israeli friend of mine that some maintain that the Talmidim of Rebbi Akiva zs'l didn't all die in a plague, but rather they were killed by Roman soldiers because they had ...
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1answer
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Warm food on Shabbat day during Mishnaic and Talmudic times

In looking over the laws for keeping food warm over Shabbat, I began to wonder how things practically played out during the times of the Mishna and Talmud. Given that an oven could only be used if the ...
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0answers
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Why is the name “Tre Asar” in Aramaic?

All the books of Tanach are either named after a person, or are given a Hebrew name, except for Tre Asar, which is Aramaic. One would have expected the Hebrew title Shinem Asar, and indeed it is ...
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1answer
94 views

Diets promoted by different Rabbis throughout history

I was curious if there was any information about the sages or other known historical Rabbis who promoted diets for physical/spiritual health. Obviously, Kosher is Kosher but did anyone ever suggest ...
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0answers
59 views

Building a community from the ground up [closed]

Many times, jewish people were forced to leave their cities and rebuild their communities in other places. Jewish life needs a lot of elements to be practiced at full (bread, wine and candles for the ...
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1answer
154 views

Is fighting in a non-Jewish army against another army with Jews as well permissible?

Let me explain. This is something that actually happened, in World War One; Jews volunteered to fight with the Entente and many Jews volunteered on the Central Powers. Some could have served on the ...
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1answer
90 views

Working Talmid Chochum [duplicate]

In Jewish history, amongst the rishonim and achronim (and achrei achronim), who were known to be Talmidei Chachumim (either due to their seforim or just facts) and Businessmen (employee counts)?
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1answer
77 views

Which of the *Zugos* were in charge during the Chanukah story?

Pirkei Avos tells us of a chain of Torah leadership from Shimon HaTzadik (who lived in the times of Alexander the Great), to Antignos Ish Socho, to the pairs of leaders after that. On whose watch did ...
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1answer
45 views

In story of Rebbe Akiva's students, found in yevamos 62b, how is it possible that they didn't show honour to one another [duplicate]

Rabbi Akiva, the tanna who has the famous quote " this is the greatest rule, love your fellow like you love yourself". If that is what he stands for how could it be that his students disregarded that ...
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1answer
80 views

High priest’s death pardoning criminals?

A Christian was telling me that in ancient Israel there was some rule about banishment and high priests, that Jesus is the ultimate high priest, that his death released everyone from sin. What - if ...
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Tefillin on the elbow in the history

משנה האומר איני עובר לפני התיבה בצבועין אף בלבנים לא יעבור בסנדל איני עובר אף יחף לא יעבור העושה תפלתו עגולה סכנה ואין בה מצוה נתנה על מצחו או על פס ידו הרי זו דרך המינות ציפן זהב ונתנה על בית ...
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1answer
63 views

Tefillin on the chest

Were there a Jewish religious movements /sects in the history that used to put or hanged their Tefillin on their chest / neck? (rather than on the arm against the heart). As far as I remember, I read ...
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4answers
91 views

Who were the zekeinim mentioned in Pirkei Avot?

In Pirkei Avot, in chapter one mishna 1 it says that Yehoshua passed on the Torah to the zekeinim. Who were they? For how long did they exist?
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4answers
324 views

Transition from “Temple Judaism” to “Rabbinic Judaism”

In reference to this comment on the Worldbuilding.SE question, "What educational resources could help someone who knows they will time travel to the future?": There is little resemblance between ...
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0answers
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Jewish life during the times of the Black Death [closed]

I'm looking for any sources (if possible maybe even first-hand written accounts) of how Jews who lived in Western Europe at that time handled this particular period. Anything goes, matter of fact ...
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0answers
55 views

Slobodka/Chevron and Shaving during Sefira

I have been told by many that in the famed Slobodka Yeshiva the students would shave even during Sefira, per the stress on Gadlus HaAdam the Yeshiva pushed. Has anyone seen this mentioned anywhere, ...
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59 views

Could Jesus the Nazarene have been buried near the Galilean city of Safed? [closed]

I am an Italian noahide. I read that the famous Rabbi Isaac Luria, in his "Book of the Reincarnations", writes in chapter 37, within the long list of Jewish Tzadiks: "On your way from Safed toward ...
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0answers
60 views

Does the leading status of Rabbi Akiva's students following the Bar Kochba revolt mean Rabbi Akiva's opinions are more often followed? [closed]

I understand that Rabbi Akiva was the foremost rabbinic leader of his time, and after the Bar Kochba revolt his students were the primary Tanaaim, and they also were responsible for organizing the ...
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2answers
126 views

Who were the Sabians?

In the Guide, Maimonides talks about the religion of the Sabians (first idolators). He tells us that he has spent much time learning about the Sabian religion (he was sort of an anthropologist). After ...
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Are there sources which cite art as being an extension of spiritual practice in Jewish tradition?

I understand this question may be interpreted as being slightly generalized but I'm asking for sources which cite the religious/spiritual nature of art in Jewish practice. Obviously, statues of ...
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0answers
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Who was the last Samukh (סמוך)?

Who was the last 'Samukh' (סמוך)? Rambam stated in the introduction of his book, that the last Sanhedrin (סנהדרין) was a little before the Talmud was edited. But it says nothing about the last ...
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Gedolim on Spanish Flu

Did the Gedolim of the time during whcih the Spanish Flu was spreading (and killed anywhere from 17 million to 50 million people) comment on it and provide any halachic guidance on whether to permit ...
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1answer
77 views

Arizal was 6 days on a island [closed]

It's known that the Arizal was on an island for 6 days a week and only came home on Shabbosim. Is there a Shuir/Sefer/Tradition that states what the Arizal did during his days on the island? Was he ...
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70 views

When was the din of Arba Kosot created?

The earliest source I found for the four cups in the Seder is the first Mishna in Pesachim 10: On the eve of Pesah close to minhah one may not eat until nightfall. Even the poorest person in Israel ...
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Where do the headings of the parts of the seder come from? [duplicate]

Every seder I have ever attended begins with a list of the different parts (simanim) of the seder. This list is often sung and consists of the following: קַדֵשׁ וּרְחַץ כַּרְפַּס יחץ מגיד ...
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1answer
33 views

Praying based on national merit - Early examples

It seems to be a common theme in the prayer service that we ask for our needs basing our requests on the mercy of G-d, and, occasionally, on the merit of our forefathers. Nonetheless, we find some ...
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1answer
87 views

How do references to eternity in Torah square with the finite life of the sun?

How is one to read אות היא לעולם, נר תמיד and שומר ישראל לעד knowing that the sun will not endure? Torah is written in human language. Is "for ever" confined to human measures, and in fact then, ...
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46 views

Why did the Tos'fos Yom Tov compose his Mi Sheberach?

It is well known that R. Yom Tov Heller, author of the Tos'fos Yom Tov and other works, wrote a prayer to be recited for the benefit of those who don't speak in the synagogue (or: during prayer). I'm ...
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81 views

What is the relationship between the tradition of the Pharisees and Rabbinic Judaism (Yahadut Rabanit)?

I am an Italian Noahide In several articles and studies I have read that the Rabbinic Judaism (Yahadut Rabanit) would have its roots in the Pharisaic tradition. However, here is what I read on a ...
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1answer
140 views

What is the halacha on proselytizing?

What is the halacha on proselytizing? If a Jew tries to convince a non-Jew to become Jewish, is he breaking any commandments or rabbinic decrees? Sources, please. (I know there is evidence we used ...

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