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Questions tagged [mishna]

The mishna which is part of the oral law, was written by the Tannaim in a short-form containing 6 volumes with 64 subvolumes.

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20
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5answers
635 views

Zeraim Moed Nashim Nezikim Kodshim Taharos - why not Moadim?

The names of the Shisha Sidrei Mishna (Six Orders of Mishnah) are: Zeraim, Moed, Nashim, Nezikim, Kodshim, Taharos. All of them besides Moed are in plural form. However Moed is in singular form. Why ...
19
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1answer
355 views

Why was the side door to the hechal unlocked so oddly?

The hechal (central room) of the bes hamikdash had its main entrance on its eastern end. To either side of that entrance were cubicles, and the main-floor cubicles on each side had a door to the east ...
17
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3answers
380 views

How do we understand the idea of something missing from the mishnah חסורי מיחסרא והכי קתני?

The gemoro often reconciles the argument of a mishnah with other evidence by saying חסורי מיחסרא והכי קתני - there is something missing from the mishnah and this is how you must learn it. See for ...
16
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4answers
10k views

“Anyone who saves a life is as if he saved an entire world”: Jewish life or any life?

I am puzzled by the Mishnah's original text of the famous Jewish idea that "whoever saves one life [...] saves an entire world" (Sanhedrin 4:5). The English from sefaria.org reads thus: "It was for ...
16
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1answer
414 views

Why are the names of some Masechtot in Aramaic while others are in Hebrew?

I noticed that the names of some Masechtot have an Aramaic plural ending - nun - such as "Gittin", while others have a Hebrew ending - mem - such as "Bikurim". Was there some pattern or logic in ...
13
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2answers
643 views

Sh'kalim, Kinim, Midos in daf yomi

Why are Sh'kalim (Y'rushalmi) and Kinim and Midos (mishnayos) learned as part of the standard daf yomi cycle for Talmud Bavli? And if the answer relies on some fact of publication, then (a) why ...
13
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2answers
335 views

Differences between Bat Kol and prophecy

A bat kol, lit. a 'daughter of a voice', is understood by Marcus Jastrow as a divine voice, a substitute for prophecy. The instance of a bat kol occurs many times in the Talmud1. There are sources ...
12
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2answers
221 views

Which came first the Mishnah Torah or the Pirush HaMishnayos

Which sefer did the Ramabm author first, was it his Mishnah Torah (Yad HaChazaka) or his commentary to Mishnayos?
12
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2answers
231 views

What's up with Rabbi Shimon ben Nesanel in Avos 2:10?

In chapter 2 of Pirkei Avos (Ethics of Our Fathers) it says that: "Rabban Yochanan the son of Zakkai had five disciples" It goes on to list their names and qualities, and then it says that R' ...
11
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3answers
266 views

Why do siddurim and Shulchan Oruch OC start with Shacharis?

Why do siddurim and Shulchan Oruch OC start with the morning? Since the day starts with night, they should start with Maariv as does the mishnah.
11
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5answers
593 views

What should I use for Mishna study?

I'm new to Mishna study, and I want to participate in a communal effort to study Mishna. I picked out a section to study, and now I need to find a convenient resource to learn from. I don't ...
11
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1answer
2k views

Meaning of the phrase “all Holy Scripture defile the hands.”

I'm sorry if this question is too basic (I'm really impressed with the learned people answering questions on Mi Yodeya!). I was reading about the Council of Jamnia on Wikipedia: https://en....
11
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2answers
612 views

How can Bet Shamai argue on Shamai?

How do we explain that Bet Shammai is documented as arguing on their teacher Shammai? I didn't notice any of the classic Meforshim discussing this peculiarity. There are at least 4 documented cases ...
10
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7answers
20k views

List of Number of Mishnayos by chapter / masechta

I'm looking for a list that enumerates the number of Mishnayos in each perek, as well as totals by masechta. Does anyone here know of such a list (or have the ability to quickly produce one)?
10
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4answers
200 views

Does Rashi's commentary on a quoted mishna reflect the true explanation?

Often the Bavli will quote a mishna from another maseches (tractate) or another part of the same maseches. Does Rashi's commentary on the Bavli's quotation of the mishna reflect his interpretation of ...
10
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1answer
353 views

Why does the Mishna misquote the Tanakh?

In a number of instances, the Mishna provides quotes from Tanakh that differ from the versions of Tanakh that we have today. So, for example, Sotah 6:4 (31b). There, the mishna quotes Deuteronomy 19:...
10
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2answers
218 views

Is the Number of Chapters Per Tractate Relevant?

Much has been written about the sequence of tractates in each mishnaic order. Perhaps most famously, Rambam (in his introduction to Commentary on Mishnayos) explained the position of each tractate ...
10
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1answer
209 views

Who is the author of the 5th parek of pirkei avot?

Most of pirkei avot is very specific about attribution of various ethical teachings, with the notable exception of the 5th parek, mishnayot 1-19, which are all anonymous. Is there a tradition of who ...
9
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5answers
1k views

Why do Beit Shammai and Beit Hillel always argue?

Why is it that the Academies of Shammai and Hillel have contradictory opinions in most of the verses? It's almost as if one is waiting for the other to give a contradictory opinion. Take, for example,...
9
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5answers
784 views

Reading Mishnayos without understanding

Is it considered Talmud Torah if one just reads mishnayos without understanding what he's saying?
9
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4answers
1k views

Is it important to learn Mishnah before Talmud?

I have recently started learning Talmud / Gemara recently, and though I am enjoying the experience greatly, something tells me that it would be helpful if I actually went about learning Mishnayot ...
9
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1answer
376 views

Confessing to Adultery

In the Mishna, Sotah 1:3 and 3:3 both speak of instances in which a woman suspected of having committed adultery admits of her crime before drinking the water. Given that the penalty for adultery is ...
9
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1answer
160 views

Who was the author/compiler of the Ikkar Tosfos Yom Tov?

I've noticed when learning Mishnayos that with the more basic layouts consist of the Mishna and the commentaries of Rav Ovadia M'Bartenura and the Ikkar Tosfos Yom Tov. It is known that Rav Yom-Tov ...
8
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2answers
350 views

Why does the Mishnah/Gemara begin with Masekhet Berakhot?

As mentioned (link 1, link 2) and I've seen on the ArtScroll Talmud series (though I don't have a picture to support the fact), the Mishnah/Gemara "begin" with Masekhet Berakhot. Why was this order ...
8
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1answer
119 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:...
8
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2answers
277 views

Why is Kinim so long?

Mishnayos maseches Kinim can be reduced to a few rules. I think they're as follows (though it's been a while, so I may be messing some of these up). A bird ola is brought on the top of the mizbeach, ...
8
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5answers
444 views

How does salt “add heat” (mishna in Shabbos 4(1))

The mishna in Shabbos 4(1) tells us which materials may not be used to insulate foods for Shabbos because they "add heat". One of these materials is salt. Can anyone explain how salt can add heat ...
8
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1answer
176 views

Why is the blessing of Mezonos not mentioned in the Mishnah?

The Mishnayos of the sixth perek of Berachos discuss all the different blessings which one makes on food, with the exception of the blessing 'borei minei mezonos'. Why is this not mentioned?
8
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2answers
119 views

Why does the order of temple services in our prayers follow the non-hallachic opinion?

Something that has bothered me for a long time, and I have not found a good explanation for, is why we recite the order of service in the temple following Abbaye in the name of Abba Shaul, despite the ...
8
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1answer
129 views

Is a mishna or a baraysa more authoritative?

Often, an opinion in a baraysa (by which I mean to include tosefta and any other non-mishna text of tanaim's halachic statements) and an opinion in a mishna differ on a matter of law. Is there any ...
8
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2answers
844 views

What is “piggul”? A question on the Bartenura

The Mishna (Zevachim 2:3) clearly defines piggul (פגול) as resulting from one of the four sacrificial procedures (slaughter, collection of the blood, walking to the altar and sprinkling) being ...
8
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1answer
629 views

What is the source of the 'elu devarim' text printed in siddurim?

The girsa of the 'elu devarim' text that appears in many siddurim after birkot hatorah cannot be sourced, so far as I can tell, to any particular rabbinic text. Here's the version that appears in ...
8
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1answer
235 views

Division of Mishnayos in Pirkei Avos / Meseches Avos

In the Siddur, Pirkei Avos has a different division (in each Perek the amount of Mishnayos) than in the Mishnayos Avos. Who determined the division of the Mishnayos in the Siddur?
7
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2answers
55 views

Why is Shekalim in Moed?

Maseches Shekalim is the fourth Masechta in Seder Moed. While it opens up with the fact that the Beis HaMikdash treasurers would collect the Shekalim every Adar, the rest of the Masechta talks about ...
7
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1answer
91 views

Does the Mishnah have Taamei Mikrah?

In this book (end of #20, in bold), R' Shmaryahu Horowitz quotes the book "Maase Efod" by R' Yitzhak ben Moshe Halevy (1350-1415), that lists the proper ways of Torah learning and mentions that there ...
7
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1answer
75 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 ...
7
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1answer
176 views

Plural vs Singular masechtot names

Why are some masechtot names plural (e.g. gitin, kidushin) while others are singular (e.g. tomid, nida and shabos)?
7
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1answer
236 views

Getting married at 18

The Mishna in Avos says that one should get married at 18 , is there a reason for this particular age ?
7
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3answers
183 views

Can the Mishnah be interpreted according to both peshat and drash?

There's a statement attributed to the Vilna Gaon (quoted in the introduction to Binas Mikra and in several other places) that the Mishnah can be interpreted according to 'peshat' which can sometimes ...
7
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1answer
192 views

Where can I find an English version of Rambam's Introduction to Mishnah?

I am looking for an online copy of an English translation to Rambam's introduction to the whole Mishna. I have found a few copies in Hebrew, but I am looking for something legible and understandable ...
7
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1answer
315 views

Dancing on Yom Kippur

Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel, in the final mishna of Ta'anit (4:8), speaks of women going into the vineyards on Yom Kippur and dancing for the unmarried men who would then choose wives for themselves. ...
7
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1answer
127 views

Generally speaking, how should one interpret Mishnayos that go off-tangent?

To pose a few examples of the types of Mishnayos I'm speaking about: Pesachim 4:1-5 discusses various activities which depend on the local custom, most of which have nothing to do with Pesach Gittin ...
6
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6answers
2k views

The Layman's Masechta (Mishnayoth) for a Siyum

What is a good Masechta of Mishnayoth for someone to learn if they just want to get a basic understanding and complete a Masechta in a relatively short time? Examples where this would be practical ...
6
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3answers
638 views

Is it mentioned anywhere in all of the Mishna or the Talmud that Paul of Tarsus was a student of Rabban Gamaliel

Is it mentioned anywhere in all of the Mishna or the Talmud that Paul of Tarsus was a student of Rabban Gamaliel? Acts 22:3 I am verily a man which am a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, yet ...
6
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3answers
151 views

How were the Rabbis allowed to trick Karkamit?

According to Akavya ben Mehallel, Eduyot 5:6 states that a freed maidservant was made to drink fake sotah water (this is how most commentators interpret the phrase). I assume, though I have not seen ...
6
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1answer
224 views

Why does the Mishnah use the terms poor person and homeowner when discussing carrying on Shabbat?

This first Mishna in Shabbat (2a) describes the transfer of an item from a private domain to a public domain. The Mishna describes the individuals involved in this transfer as העני עומד בחוץ ובעל ...
6
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1answer
127 views

Why were the baraitot excluded from the mishnayot?

The Gemara (or Talmud) is full of Tannaitic teachings known as baraitot (or baraita in the singular). Nevertheless, these teachings were not codified in the Shishah Sidre'i Mishnah (Six Orders of The ...
6
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1answer
204 views

Understanding Yevamot 4:13's proof of who, exactly, is a mamzer

When it comes to the question of who is a mamzer, numerous conflicting theories abound in the early rabbinic literature. The opinion presented anonymously in Qiddushin 3:12, which appears to be ...
6
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1answer
1k views

Reasons for divorcing a woman (sourcing a chiddush)

The Mishna in Gittin 9:10 provides a few different interpretations of ערות דבר (Deuteronomy 24:1). While the school of Shammai hold that for a man to divorce his wife he needs to find significant ...
6
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1answer
148 views

Number of sages in the Sanhedrin of Yavneh

According to Sanhedrin 1:6, the Sanhedrin in Jerusalem had either seventy or seventy-one sages. But according to Zevachim 1:3, Yadayim 3:5 and 4:2, there were seventy-two sages in Yavneh on the day ...