Episode #125 of the Stack Overflow podcast is here. We talk Tilde Club and mechanical keyboards. Listen now

Questions tagged [plagues-makkos]

The plagues in Egypt preceding the exodus therefrom, as recounted in Exodus and elsewhere

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
8
votes
1answer
577 views

Origin of Spilling Wine by 10 Plagues

The custom among all Jews (as far as I know) is to spill a drip of wine for each of the plagues as they are mentioned in a list in the haggadah. This custom is not mentioned anywhere in the Talmud (as ...
13
votes
4answers
447 views

Did hardening Paro's heart mean he wasn't really responsible?

As a child I often wondered how, if God kept hardening Paro's heart after each plague, it could really be Paro's fault. It sounds like God was setting him up to fail, and while that's God's ...
17
votes
2answers
2k views

What was the Arov?

The fourth plague is Arov commonly translated as wild beasts. The word I think most literally translates to "a collection" or in this case, maybe along the lines of "a swarm" (consider the word "...
16
votes
4answers
2k views

After the first plague, where did Paro's magicians get water to turn to blood?

Sh'mot chapter 7 describes the first plague, with the Nile and all other water turning to blood (except the Israelites' water). Paro's magicians then turn water into blood, which convinces Paro that ...
6
votes
10answers
633 views

The Plague of Darkness

This is a two fold question 1)The plaque of darkness has considerable commentary, however I have yet to find a rabbi who speaks about what created the darkness. Therefore, What created the darkness ...
5
votes
3answers
117 views

Why is every commandment and action in regards to the 10 plagues repeated?

When we read about the 10 plagues everything is repeated twice: once when Hashem commands Moshe and a second time when Moshe executes the plague. The Torah could simply write "and he did so" after ...
14
votes
3answers
407 views

Why is every 3rd plague (of the 10 brought on Pharoah) unannounced?

It seems like Moshe warned Pharoah of every plague except the 3rd (lice), 6th (boils) and 9th (darkness). Why is that? Is there something special about these plagues?
19
votes
1answer
831 views

Critical Jewish analysis of the Ipuwer papyrus

I just stumbled across information about the Ipuwer papyrus, and I was wondering how many Jewish Egyptologists have had an opportunity to review and study it at length. Other than this very brief ...
13
votes
1answer
437 views

2.4 million killed according to Rashi in B'shalach. Why does no one talk about it?

In the begining of Parshat B'shalach, Rashi says that one p'shat for "Vachamushim" means one fifth, because during Makas Choshech, 4 out of 5 were killed out, and it happened during the time it was ...
10
votes
3answers
909 views

What were the 300 plagues of the Exodus?

The הגדה says: במצרים לקו חמשים מכות, ועל הים לקו חמשים ומאתים מכות In Egypt, they were struck with 50 plagues, and by the Sea [of Reeds], they were struck with 250 plagues What were ...
7
votes
2answers
738 views

What is considered to be “firstborn”?

This is probably a bit pedantic and beside-the-point, but here goes: in Exodus 12 (I am reading the Jewish Publication Society translation), we have: 12 For I will go through the land of Egypt in ...
5
votes
0answers
196 views

Did Pharaoh attempt to kill Moses during the plagues

Given that Moses was a wanted fugitive (Ex.2:15) and that he was destroying the land of egypt with the plagues, and a general nuisance to Pharaoh were there attempts to kill him by Pharaoh. (by for ...
2
votes
1answer
128 views

9 plagues in response to Pharaoh's denial of G-d?

I once heard a Shiur where the Rabbi said that originally there were not going to be 10 plagues, Just the threat of death of Egyptian firstborns should Pharaoh not listen. It was only once Pharaoh ...
7
votes
2answers
250 views

Could the destroyer in Egypt discriminate?

In Rashi's comment to Shemos 12:22 we read ואתם לא תצאו וגו': מגיד שמאחר שנתנה רשות למשחית לחבל אינו מבחין בין צדיק לרשע …once permission has been given to the משחית (destroyer) to damage, ...
7
votes
3answers
147 views

Why do all of them say that there were 5 times more plagues at the sea, instead of 1.5 times?

In the Haggadah it says: (text from WikiSource) רַבִּי יוֹסֵי הַגְּלִילִי אוֹמֵר: מִנַּיִן אַתָּה אוֹמֵר שֶׁלָּקוּ הַמִּצְרִים בְּמִצְרַיִם עֶשֶׂר מַכּוֹת וְעַל הַיָּם לָקוּ חֲמִשִּׁים מַכּוֹת? ...
2
votes
1answer
80 views

Is one allowed to drink from the wine spilled out of the cup at the Makkos?

It is a widespread minhag that during the mention of the makkos at the Seder one should either spill out wine or dip a finger into the cup and put it to the side. I have heard that one should not ...
1
vote
2answers
145 views

Why would Pharaoh's heart be made כבד by G-D?

I've always loved the account of the 10 plagues (who doesn't?), but I always felt a little odd about the several times (7, in fact) Pharoah's heart was made "hard/heavy" by G-d because I'm a strong ...
10
votes
4answers
291 views

Why did the Mitzryim turn water into blood rather than vice versa?

Why didn't the Mitzryim magic makers just take away the blood from the first makkah to prove to Moshe that he was just doing magic and Hashem had nothing to do with it: why did they add blood (Exodus ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Why only beginning with the fourth plague is the exemption of the Jews mentioned?

In Moshe's warning to Pharaoh (in Hashem's name) of the fourth plague, arov, he adds (Ex. 8:18-19): וְהִפְלֵיתִי בַיּוֹם הַהוּא אֶת-אֶרֶץ גֹּשֶׁן אֲשֶׁר עַמִּי עֹמֵד עָלֶיהָ לְבִלְתִּי הֱיוֹת-שָׁם ...
8
votes
2answers
212 views

If Hashem brought about Macos Bechoros by himself, with out any angel, then what is the משחית?

If Hashem brought about Macos Bechoros by himself, with out any angel, then what is the משחית that would not harm the Bnei Yisroel mentioned in Shemot Chapter 12, Verse 23? Premises based on the ...
8
votes
3answers
173 views

Why the extra words “who sits on his throne”, “who is behind the millstone”?

In Parshas Bo, 11:5, the Torah says: "Every firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sits on his throne, to the firstborn of the slave-woman who is behind the ...
7
votes
4answers
438 views

Splitting the Makot

The splitting of the Parshiot usually make, at least, some sense. However, in the next two Parshiot the plagues are split up (7 in the first, 3 in the second). Are there sources on why this may be? ...
6
votes
1answer
87 views

What happened to the Nile in the week following the first plague?

According to the tosafist R' Yosef Bechor Shor, as cited in answers here and here, the Nile turned to blood only long enough to kill all the fish and then it turned back to water (which was now fouled ...
5
votes
2answers
155 views

Were Children of Israel killed in the plague of the firstborn?

We know from Torah that all B'nai Israel who: Ate the Passover lamb Did not eat leavening (bread and beer) Were inside at midnight (and stayed inside until morning) Were in a house whose doorposts ...
5
votes
1answer
62 views

What was wrong with Pharoah?

How מכה after מכה,‎ פרעה could just go and still deny בנ"י the right to leave is preposterous. And maybe you’ll say ה'‏ hardened his heart- but this is only after the last five מכות; the first ...
4
votes
3answers
436 views

Is the wine spilled at the Seder “cursed”?

As I recall, my mother usually discards the wine that is spilled at the Seder during the listing of the plagues. But I think she does this because, well, just because it's spilled wine and it is not ...
4
votes
1answer
137 views

Exodus 11:5 Why the firstborn?

Moses said, "Thus says the LORD, 'About midnight I am going out into the midst of Egypt, and all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of the Pharaoh who sits on his throne, ...
4
votes
0answers
332 views

Timeline of the 10 plagues in exodus?

Do we have a chronological timeline (with years) of the 10 plagues? I'm trying to recreate a full timeline of the הגדה של פסח for the upcoming holiday, going from the arrival of Jacob and his family ...
3
votes
3answers
126 views

Why does the Haggadah interpret ביד חזקה as referring to דבר?

Why does the Haggadah interpret ביד חזקה (strong hand) as referring to the plague of דבר (pestilence)? Why don’t the other plagues demonstrate a strong hand?
3
votes
2answers
123 views

Did Paro have an older brother?

The final plague struck down all the first-born males in Egypt. Paro was not struck down this way, so does that mean he had an older brother? If so, what happened to him that Paro, not the older ...
3
votes
1answer
47 views

“bechor hashifcha” and “bechor hashvi” — why the change? (Shemos 11:5, 12:29)

During leining today, I noticed that the Torah changes its wording, when describing the breadth of Makkas Bechoros -- when Pharaoh is warned, in Shemot 11:5, we have: וּמֵת כָּל בְּכוֹר בְּאֶרֶץ ...
3
votes
6answers
495 views

Mnemonic of Rebbi Yehuda

The Haggadah tells us that Rebbi Yehuda came up with a mnemonic for remembering the Ten Plagues: Dtzach Adash B'Achav Why was the mnemonic necessary? It doesn't seem to me to be that difficult to ...
3
votes
1answer
136 views

Did Moshe know beforehand that there would be 10 plagues?

I was wondering whether, before the first time Moshe went to Pharaoh, he knew that there would be 10 plagues, and what they would be.
2
votes
1answer
421 views

Connection of the 10 plagues to the 10 sayings used to create the world

I have read in the name of the Vilna Gaon that the 10 plagues were corresponding to the 10 sayings God used to create the world (dont know the exact source). Thus the slaying of the first born ...
0
votes
1answer
177 views

Plague of darkness: if he was standing, he was unable to sit?

Rashi on Shemot 10:22 states: ויהי חשך אפלה שלשת ימים וגו': חשך של אופל שלא ראו איש את אחיו אותן שלשת ימים. ועוד שלשת ימים אחרים חשך מוכפל על זה, שלא קמו איש מתחתיו. יושב אין יכול לעמוד, ועומד ...