We’re rewarding the question askers & reputations are being recalculated! Read more.
25

The Shulchan Aruch was written by Rabbi Yosef Karo in the mid-sixteenth century. That is the reference to #1 ("stam" means plain, without any additional qualifications. Since then, others have appropriated the name or made names that have allusions to it, when writing books which have a similar purpose - to structure and organize Jewish Law into a relatively ...


19

My understanding (no source) is that, yes, twentieth-century rabbis kept copies. It wasn't necessary to type twice: they used carbon paper. I don't know about older rabbis, though. Update: However, see the comments on this answer.


18

Rabbi Eli Mansour said after Rashi to learn Ramban.


18

Quick-Reference List of the Section-Contents of Igros Moshe - אגרות משה All links are to the first page of the section on HebrewBooks.org. The end of each volume has, for each of the responsa sections, a list of "references from Shas and Posekim" and a table of contents with responsa numbers, titles, and page numbers. Links to these are included below ...


18

There's no sin in translating Jewish texts (nowadays, at least). I have no source for saying so, but there's evidence in the vast amount of Jewish literature that has been translated into various languages. However: People sometimes can't be bothered to translate, especially because of the remaining reasons (below). Some words are very hard to translate ...


18

I have no time to read the article - and therefore do not endorse anything they write. The Rabbis instituted that Holy Books like a Sefer Torah would defile the hands. Why? Because people would keep their Teruma (tithes to be given to the Cohen) with their Holy Books. This was to prevent their Teruma from becoming Tameh (impure). The rationale was the ...


17

The Mesillas Yesharim is certainly one of the most influential and popular seforim ever written. It is considered a basic text in most yeshivos and is widely studied by Jews throughout the world (both in the original language and in translation). Before we can address the reasons for the immense popularity of this work, we first need to address one of the ...


17

Some of this was summarized in a previous answer here. There are many opinions about this stuff, by the way. Rabbi Yehuda Herzl Henkin's Bnei Banim 4:16 is a MUST READ. It addresses the halachic angle on some of these matters, while Rabbi Aharon Lichtenstein's "Of Marriage: Relationship and Relations" (Tradition 39:2) addresses the "hashkafic" (...


17

According to Mechon Mamre: TL;DR TOTAL - 16,818 (+ 104) Hamada` - 725 Ahavah - 730 (+ 63) Zemanim - 1,738 (+ 41) Nashim - 1,207 Qedushah - 1,140 Hafla'ah - 820 Zera`im - 1,582 `Avodah - 1,537 Haqorbanot - 651 Taharah - 2,317 Nezaqim - 993 Qinyan - 1,191 Mishpattim - 1,141 Shofettim - 1,046 Hamada` - 725 Yesode'i HaTorah - 140 De`ot - 130 Talmud Torah - ...


17

There was an article in Tradition journal which discussed some of the arguments for and against using manuscripts in Halakha (which is what I'm assuming the questioner is looking for). It is linked here, but I'll summarize some of the main sources that would be relevant to dealing with this question (especially since the article is behind a paywall even ...


16

I just had a nice long chat on their website with Chaim Rosenberg, the director The Society for the Preservation of Hebrew Books. He said they are currently working on a new HebrewBooks drive, that should be available soon. So apparently, there is none available now. He was not sure if the new one would be on-site or in-stores. Based on that, I'd say it'll ...


15

I would recommend William Wickes' treatise on the Taamei Emet. You are describing a revia mugrash, as distinct from a revia gadol or revia katon. It is indeed a disjunctive accent: To really understand its function, you should familiarize yourself with Wickes' description of the continuous dichotomy. But the pasuk is first divided at the etnachta (or ...


15

When I was at KBY, I asked the campus Posek this question, and he said that it's OK, because the bentcher is protected by at least two layers of covering ("kli betoch kli"). He added that it may even be OK in a pants pocket without the wallet, since the fabric of the pocket and the fabric of the pants could constitute two layers.


14

The Aruch Hashulchan (Yoreh Deah 283:6) equates all printed sefarim with regards to their holiness and in the matter of placing them one on top of another: יורה דעה סימן רפג סעיף ו וכתב רבינו הרמ"א דכל זה בחומשים העשויים בגליון כספר תורה. אבל בשלנו שהם נכרכים – אין חילוק בין חומש לנביא. עד כאן לשונו. כלומר: דוודאי כל ספרי קודש הם קדושים, אך זהו קדושה כללית....


14

Rabbi J.H. Henkin has an excellent essay, going from the Talmudic sources to his interpretation of modern-day requirements. I strongly recommend you start there. (Link is to Google Books; many good libraries have this book in English. I believe this essay is based on material he's previously published in She'elot UTeshuvot Bnei Banim, which is available as ...


14

The standard pagination and layout of the Gemara follows that of Daniel Bomberg's edition of 1520-22, which was the first time that Shas was printed as a complete set. (Earlier Jewish printers, including the famous Soncino family, had produced only individual volumes.) A notable difference is that Berachos has 66 pages as compared to today's 64; that change ...


14

In the days before copy machines and email it was certainly a common process among many letter writers Jewish and non-Jewish alike to write out copies of their own letters that they were sending. Not everybody did it but it was quite common. You can therefore find collections of letters sent by many people famous and not famous in historical collections. The ...


14

I think that by the Lubavitcher Rebbe the secretaries used to make a rough draft, send it in to the Rebbe for proofreading, get the Rebbe to write notes on it, retype the letter and send it. Therefore, the secretaries had the original copy in manuscript. Later, when the Rebbe stopped writing full letters, He used to respond in Ksav Yad on the margins of the ...


14

The Mishna Berurah (OC 96 sk 7) rules that if leaving the book on the floor will disturb your kavana (concentration), then you may pick it up in between the different blessings of shmoneh esrei. The Mishna Berura is not explicit about walking, though it does sound like he would permit it. The Be'er Moshe 3:13:6 explicitly permits walking to pick it up if it ...


14

Artscroll is currently making travel-sized paperback English Gemaras. Each only has about 1 or 2 chapters. Size: 7" x 10" There's also a "personal-sized" paperback Oz Vehadar. Size: 6.5 X 9.5 Blum Edition hardcover travel Gemara. Size: 5.25" X 8.25" Historically, after WWII the Vaad Hatzalah printed pocket sized Gemaras for survivors in the refugee ...


14

This is not meant to be a conclusive answer of all books written, but it so happens that a large majority of them are centered around the structure of 4 very important works, either as commentaries or summaries. Recognizing references to these four works can help you locate and gain some understanding of what a quoted work is. Tanach Tanach contains the 24 ...


14

I don't know of a book that records all of his judgments. However, there is one story brought in the Talmud (Sanhedrin 6b (English)): "And David did judgment and kindness" (Samuel 2 8:16). They ask: How can there be judgment and kindness together? They answer that the way he ruled was doing judgment to one of the parties and kindness to the other: He would ...


14

In America, the custom is as the custom of Europe -- to use the sefer שמלה חדשה, written by Rabbi Alexander Sender Schor (1673-1737), even though on occasion he will disagree with the שלחן ערוך. Rabbi Schor also wrote תבואת שור (an explanation to Simlah Chadasha) and בכור שור, a commentary on Shas. (see מטה אשר [commentary to שמלה חדשה] in 1:4, especially ...


13

I've got to put in a plug for the translation and commentary of R' Hirsch, of which I'm a big fan. I love his elegant, holistic, thoughtful take on the whole Torah, especially the ritual stuff in Leviticus (Temple offerings, ritual purity, etc.) that's otherwise most difficult to understand from a modern perspective. When I read R' Hirsch, everything fits ...


13

An online translation can be found here.


12

Rabbi Moshe Isserles (the Rama) in Responsa 81 attaches a footnote to the end of his responsa: אהובי לאחר שתקרא כתבי חזור לשלתו אלי כי כן מנהגי ליתן להעתיק כל הדברים הנוגעים בדין מן הדינים כדי שיהא שמור אצלי לעת זקנתי אשר אקוה מהשם ית״ש ש"ש My friend, after you read my letter please return and send it to me, for it is my custom to give to be copied ...


12

R' Hirsch (Isaac's suggestion) and Ramban (Hacham Gabriel's suggestion) are both widely available in English, and for good reason. Both are very easy to appreciate, both on the simplest of levels, as well as on much deeper planes. If your Hebrew improves or you can get a learning partner who is also capable of being a mentor, I highly, highly recommend ...


12

Sefer Chasidim 923 says that if 2 Seforim fell on the ground, one should pick up both Seforim prior to kissing the first one. Aruch Hashulchan Yore Deah 282:11 also mentions kissing a Sefer that fell on the floor.


12

I have a (paper) book called אמרי מדריך that seems to be what you're looking for. It highlights the shoresh, showing the other letters in outline, and it includes letters from the shoresh which were dropped in conjugation in minuscule type. The book is entirely in Hebrew and I can't read the introduction, so I don't know what other notational conventions ...


11

I asked this question to Rabbi Mordechai Kornfeld, the rosh kollel of iyun hadaf in harnof http://dafyomi.co.il he replied: "There is a difference of opinion among the Torah authorities as to whether this section should be studied by the typical student of the Torah. Many Torah luminaries maintain that one should not seek philosophical proofs of G-d's ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible