Questions tagged [tanach]

An acronym of "Torah" (Five Books of Moses), "Neviim" (Prophets), and "Kesuvim" (Writings). The three books together form the "Written Torah".

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Proper Reading of the Word זועה

The word זועה appears six times in tanach: Yeshayahu 28:19 Yirmiyahu 15:4 Yirmiyahu 24:9 Yirmiyahu 29:18 Yirmiyahu 34:17 Divrei Hayamim II 29:8 In each one of these instances except the first, the ...
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Why aren't peas mentioned in the Tanach/Talmud?

Or if my premise is wrong, please correct me? Guns, Germs, & Steel talks about early domesticated crops of the Fertile Crescent. No surprise that he quickly mentions wheat, barley, olives, dates, ...
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Why does Pirkei d'Rebbi Eliezer only connect certain berachos of Shemoneh Esrei to events in Tanach?

According to Pirkei d'Rebbi Eliezer: The first beracha of Shemoneh Esrei, "Blessed are You, Hashem, Protector of Avraham," refers to Hashem's protecting Avraham during the war with the four kings (ch....
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Sheimos-free versions of Tanach Online

There are many websites that provide the user with the text of Tanach (as well as various other Jewish sources). When printing sources, I like to avoid printing "Sheimos", or actual names of Hashem, ...
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Early descriptions of the Foundation Stone

I am looking for early descriptions of the "Foundation Stone" (אבן שתיה) -- the huge flat rock now enclosed by the "Dome of the Rock," and believed by many Jewish scholars to have been the site of the ...
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Source for Jewish Chapter breaks in Tanach

I know that the chapter divisions are a Christian invention, and therefore don't exist in very old Jewish sources (Aleppo Codex, Leningrad Codex, dead sea scrolls, etc.). However our divisions don't ...
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What would the status of the "Book of the Wars of God" be today?

The Torah makes reference to a Book of the Wars of God (Bamidbar 21:10-16). According to most opinions this was an actual written work which has been lost over time. It is not clear (at least to me) ...
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Criteria for special formats of some chapters in the Tanach Scrolls

Usually, when writing verses in Tanach Scrolls, words are written across the column from the right margin to the left (except, of course, for required Parsha spacing.) I have seen two "special" ...
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Using Eicha trop when learning

When leining in shul, there are a few minhagim about what gets read with the Eicha trop. This is what I've seen most often (in chronological order through the year): איכה אשא לבדי in Devarim Most of ...
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Multiple characters with the same name in the bible

In the Bible most of the names are unique, especially for the main characters. As far as I know there is only one Abraham and only one Moses etc. There are some names that appear more than once like ...
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Differences between Breuer Tanachim

I stayed with Dr. Gabriel Wasserman for Shabbos over the summer and he mentioned that the different editions of R' Mordochai Breuer's זצ"ל Tana"ch have some small differences (eg. the Mosad ...
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Are there any examples of "par ha'elem davar" in Tanakh or Talmud?

In Lev. 4:13-15, we learn If it is the whole community of Israel that has erred and the matter escapes the notice of the congregation, so that they do any of the things which by the LORD’s ...
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Sheva and Dedan

Is there any connection between Sheva and Dedan, sons of Yokshan ben Avraham (Beresheet 25:3, Divrei Hayamim 1:1:32) and Sheva and Dedan, sons of Ra'ama ben Cush (Beresheet 10:7)?
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The Battle of Gog and Magog

Very little is known about The Battle of Gog and Magog, it is shroud in mystery and countless debates. The prophet Ezekiel (chapters 38-39) describes the battle and the prophet Zachariya (chapter 14) ...
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What is 1,530 a reference to?

In his commentary to Genesis 7:12, R. Isaiah of Trani (the Elder) writes: וכן במניין ישראל אלף וחמש מאות ושלשים ואי אפשר דבר זה שלא היה אחד מהם יתר או חסר אלא כן דרך המקראות לתפוש מניין שלם ואפי' חסר ...
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Why does ויאמר almost never use לאמר, and why does וידבר almost always use לאמר?

It seems that whenever Tanach says ויאמר, "and he said," it almost never uses the word לאמר, "saying."1 Conversely, whenever Tanach says וידבר, "and he spoke," it almost always uses the word לאמר, "...
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Zecharia 14:4 vis-a-vis the reality of Har haZeisim being a cemetary?

This question has bothered me on and off over the years - typically around this time as we read this perek on the first day of Sukkot as the haftarah: וְעָמְד֣וּ רַגְלָ֣יו בַּיּוֹם־הַ֠הוּא עַל־...
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How did the Shofar announcements work?

In this week's Parsha - יִתְרוֹ - we have the first occurrence (AFAIK) of the Shofar blast announcing something. בִּמְשֹׁךְ הַיֹּבֵל הֵמָּה יַעֲלוּ בָהָר. When you hear the long shofar sound, you may ...
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What is the earliest source for the Tanach order in our Tanachs?

What is the earliest source for the Tanach order? The idea that the order of books in the hebrew bible is first the 5 books of moses, then the prophets, then the writings? I'm referring exclusively ...
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Why no simanim for Rus, Shir HaShirim, and Eicha?

In the Koren Tanakh, besides for the church-invented chapter system, it also puts the Jewish simanim divisions at the side of the page. Why does it not do this for Rus, Shir HaShirim, and Eicha?
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Why do third-person singular female qal verbs lack a gaʿya?

The word הָיְתָ֣ה appears in the model Masoretic codices without a gaʿya on the initial ה in several places (e.g. Isaiah 1:21 in L [facsimile] & A). Likewise, זָכְרָ֥ה lacks a gaʿya (e.g. Nehamiah ...
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Any mention of Hakhel in Neviim or Ktuvim?

It appears that Hakhel is only mentioned in Dvarim 31:10-12 and Talmud. Is it ever mentioned in Tanakh outside of the Torah (i.e., Prophets or Writings)? E.g., "such and such king observed/failed to ...
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Mechon-Mamre Tanach text

Which manuscript of the Masoretic text is used as the basis for the Tana"ch on Mechon-Mamre.org? Is it based on the Leningradensis, the Keter Aram Soba, or another manuscript?
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Anywhere in Tanach where brothers-in-law have the same name?

Is there anywhere in Tanach where brothers-in-law have the same name? Either two sisters married men with the same name, or a woman married someone with the same name as her brother. There is a ...
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Nature of cryptic prophecies

I understand that prophecies in the Tanach seem to be very cryptic until the prophecy actually happens: then do the verses become clear and be correlated to the happened events. What are good examples ...
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Birth of Hezron and Hamul

Some critics of Genesis have noted that there is difficulty in understanding how Hezron and Hamul are considered part of the sojourning group into Egypt from the land of Canaan, when many notice that ...
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Explanation of number shifts in the Tanach

In many places in Tanach, the grammatical number (plural or singular) shifts. One famous example has to do with the rocks that Yaakov put under his head. When he woke, the "rock" is referred ...
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72 verses after morning prayer

I've been looking at early printed prayer books, and it caught my attention that many of them contain 72 verses (שבעים ושתים פסוקים) after Aleinu (see this Venice edition on p. 70 or this on p. 84, ...
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What is the rationale for only marking certain letters with sheva, when they are the last letter in a word?

In printed and manuscript editions of Tanach, I've noticed that a sheva on the final letter of a word is almost never marked, and is meant to be inferred. The two exceptions I've come across are: A ...
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Why is נַעֲרָ sometimes marked as a keri uketiv and sometimes not?

The word נַעֲרָה na'arah (girl, maiden, young lady) is almost uniformly spelled in the Torah in the form נַעֲרָ, without the concluding heh. However, it seem that it is marked as an instance of keri ...
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According to Rashi by Avraham's prayer for Sodom he reasoned that there were 8 righteous being saved. How would Ham be considered righteous?

According to Rashi on Genesis 18:32, Abraham reasoned that 8 righteous people weren't enough to save the world so that's the limit. However given what we know about Ham (cited here and other places), ...
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Are there any debates about the presence of entire words in Scripture?

Besides for the odd letter, such as an extra Vov or Yud, what Scriptual verses that we would find in Tanach today, were once or still debated by Halachic Authorities as to what is the correct text. Or ...
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Nechemiah 13 changes Hashem to Elokim

Nechemia 13:1 reads בַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֗וּא נִקְרָ֛א בְּסֵ֥פֶר מֹשֶׁ֖ה בְּאָזְנֵ֣י הָעָ֑ם וְנִמְצָא֙ כָּת֣וּב בּ֔וֹ אֲ֠שֶׁר לֹא־יָב֨וֹא עַמֹּנִ֧י וּמֹאָבִ֛י בִּקְהַ֥ל הָאֱלֹהִ֖ים עַד־עוֹלָֽם This verse ...
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What verses of Tanach have penultimate stress on every word?

Saying kaparos this year, I noticed that Iyov 33:24, which is included in the rite, has all its words mil'el, i.e. with the penultimate rather than the ultimate syllable stressed. (Most words in ...
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Is there a surviving Jewish translation of the entire Masoretic Text in Greek?

Please don't say "the Septuagint" because I know that this has fallen out of favor among most modern Jews (the only exception being Beta Israel, which I believe still uses it - correct me if I am ...
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Doubled up names of God - pronounce יהו-ה as Elokim

Many times in Tanach, God is referred to as יהו-ה or אדנ-י. Individually, each of these is read as Adonai. However, when those two different names are mentioned consecutively, the custom is to ...
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On the Root 'ע'ט'פ (and 'ע'ט'ה)

The Lishon Hakodesh root 'ע'ט'פ seems to take on a different meaning in various canons/eras: Pentateuch: In the discussion regarding Jacob's manipulation of Laban's flock, we encounter the verse (...
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Passuk-finder application

I am presently working on a siddur for personal use. However, one of my pet-peeves is when I am looking at a large block of text (let's say Hodu after Baruch She'amar in N"A) and I can't see any ...
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בגד (Begged) and מלבוש (Malbush)

Sometimes the Torah uses the word בגד for clothing, for example Vayikra 11:32, and sometimes it uses מלבוש, for example Iyov 27:16, or לבוש, as in Ester 6:8. This answer discusses the difference ...
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'Anshei' vs 'B'nei'

Ezra 2 contains a big list of the size of different families. However, some of the verses (eg 16, 17, 18) introduce those they count as בני, and some of the verses (eg 22, 23, 27) introduce those they ...
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The difference between "hu" and "zeh"

In Yeshayahu, 42:8, the text reads אֲנִ֥י יְהֹוָ֖ה ה֣וּא שְׁמִ֑י This is translated in most English version I can find as "I am God, THAT is my name." The targum doesn't translate it at ...
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What is the reasoning behind Avshalom's name

Why was Avshalom named so. It's kind of ironic that his name means "my father is peace", no? Any ideas?
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Tanach without trup and nikudos

Where can I get a tanach without nikudos and trop in book form? It should be the whole tanach and not just the haftoras. It can be side by side with nikudos and trop like a tikun or just straight text....
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Do we know what Avodah means?

Parallel to this. The root ayin-vet-dalet seems to have three separate uses according to the Even Shoshan: as a noun, eved means A) a person who is owned by another or who is forced to work for ...
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Is the Aleppo Codex hekdesh?

Every 10 or so pages of the Keter, the words קדש לה' לא ימכר ולא יגאל are written across the top. These words are based on Vayikra 27:28, which discusses hekdesh. Does that mean somebody actually ...
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Moses at fault for spies?

Looking to better understand if, per the sources, Moses was at fault for sending spies, especially as it relates to sending them on a seemingly military mission.
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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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Does ehad mean "one" or "first" when used together with "rishon"?

How should ehad be translated in this phrase and why? וְשַׂ֣ר׀ מַלְכ֣וּת פָּרַ֗ס עֹמֵ֤ד לְנֶגְדִּי֙ עֶשְׂרִ֣ים וְאֶחָ֣ד י֔וֹם וְהִנֵּ֣ה מִֽיכָאֵ֗ל אַחַ֛ד הַשָּׂרִ֥ים הָרִאשֹׁנִ֖ים בָּ֣א לְעָזְרֵ֑נִי ...
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Where can I find how many roots the author needs to compose for each book of the Tenach

For example: I am reading now the book of Joshua in Hebrew. It looks to me quite simple language. The author uses often the same terms. Poetry and wisdom-litterature is much more complex. My ...
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Why are many conversations in Tanach between two parties exclusively

Inspired by a comment on this question it seems the vast majority, if not the entirety, of conversations in Tanach are between two and only two parties. I would like to understand conceptually why ...