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Talmud

1. DEFINITION Talmud was a post-Biblical substantive formation of Pi'el ("to teach"), and originally signified "doctrine" or "study". In a special sense, however, it meant the justification and e planation of religious and legal norms or Halakhoth ("conduct", signifying "the law in accordance with which the conduct of life is to be regulated"). !hen in the third century the "ala#hoth collection of $ehuda I or the recorded %ishna became the chief object of study, the e pression "&almud" was applied chiefly to the discussions and e planations of the %ishna. 'inally, it became the general designation for the %ishna itself and the collection of discussions concerned with it. 'or the latter the designation (emara, interpreted as "completion" from the "ebrew and )ramaic words meaning "to complete", subse*uently became the accepted term. &he word first found entrance into the &almud editions through +hristian censorship, manuscripts and the old printed editions use the e pression Talmud. !e therefore understand by &almud a compilation consisting of the Mishna, i.e. the codification of $ewish religious and legal norms, and of the Gemara, or the collection of discussions and e planations concerning the %ishna. II. ORIGIN OF THE TALMUD -ince .sdras the foundation of the $ewish religious community was the law. .verything was regulated in accordance with fi ed norms, nothing could be added or changed in the law laid down in the /entateuch. 0et the ever-varying conditions of life called for new ordinances, and these were decreed in accordance with the needs of the time and the special cases to be determined. &here were thus formed a traditional law and custom orally transmitted. .very decree of this #ind (halakha), if it had e isted from time immemorial and nothing further could be said in regard to its origin, was called a law given to %oses on %ount -inai. .ven for orthodo $udaism of today it is an article of faith that %oses, at the same time that he received the written law recorded in the /entateuch, also received detailed e planations of the different laws, which were handed down by tradition as oral law. In addition to this the scribes at an early period attempted, by interpretation of the &orah, to ma#e the law applicable to the changed conditions of life, to base the new precepts at least retrospectively on the &orah, and to draw out of it further religious laws. 'or this #ind of -criptural learning hermeneutic rules (Middoth) were at a later period established, at first seven, which were then divided into fourteen, and finally increased to thirty-two. )ll the older additions to the &orah as well as the constantly increasing new material were for a long time transmitted orally, and, according to the prevailing view, it was forbidden to record it in writing. But it is at all events wrong to assume that there was a formal prohibition to record "ala#hoth in writing. &he prohibition probably referred to written records intended for public use, for a fi ed record of the traditional law would have acted as a hindrance to its further development in accordance with the e isting needs of the day. It is by no means improbable that the final reduction of the %ishna was preceded by previous written records, especially after 1abbi )giba, at the beginning of the second century, had divested the study of the law of its previous %idrash character and had underta#en to arrange the materials systematically.

)mong his pupils it was probably 1abbi %e2ir who continued these systematic labours. But of such collections only one finally attained canonical recognition, and therefore was called %ishna par excellence, vi3. the one edited about the end of the second century of our era by 1abbi $ehuda I, called Ha-nashi (the prince) or Ha-gadosh (the saint) or simply the 1abbi. &his then is our %ishna, the basis of the &almud. 1abbi $ehuda had adopted only a part of the doctrines, which in course of time had been handed down in the different schools. )lthough he selected what was most important, he sometimes omitted much that seemed important to others, and, on the other hand, it was felt that even the unimportant should not be allowed to sin# into oblivion. In conse*uence, other collections soon originated, which, though not canonical, were nevertheless highly valued. )ll the "ala#hoth which were not included in the %ishna of $ehuda received the name Baraithoth (sing. Baraitha, "omitted doctrine"). &he most important Baraitha collection is the &osephta. &he precise brevity of e pression and the pregnant form in which the %ishna had codified the "ala#hoth made an interpretation of them necessary, while the casuistic features of the wor# were a stimulus to further casuistic development. In the profound study and e planation of its contents much weight was placed upon the "aggada, i.e. the doctrines not included in the law (fol#lore, legends, historic recollections, ethics and didactics, etc.), of which $ehuda, who aimed to draw up a code of laws, had ta#en little or no account. .verything, in fact, that tradition offered was brought within the range of discussion. In order to give a suitable designation to the new tendency in the teaching of the law, scholars, up to the time of the final transcription of the %ishna, were #nown as Tanna'im (sing Tanna, "teacher"), those who came after them, Amora'im (sing. Amora, "spea#er"). &he collection of the )mora2im, as finally recorded, was called, as stated above, &almud, later (emara4 that of the /alestinian schools, the /alestinian (emara, that of the Babylonian schools, the Babylonian (emara. &he combined edition of the %ishna and (emara, or the &almud in our sense of the word, discriminates, therefore, between %ishna and /alestinian (emara, or "/alestinian &almud", and %ishna and Babylonian (emara or "Babylonian &almud". &he latter is meant when the &almud without further specification is referred to. III. THE MISHNA ('rom the "ebrew word meaning "repetition", translated by the 'athers of the +hurch deuterosis). &he word is a substantive formation from the "ebrew root meaning "to repeat". 'rom this meaning was developed, in the language of the later schools, the characteristic method of all teaching and learning, particularly of doctrines orally transmitted, which was accomplished by repeated enunciation on the part of the teacher and fre*uent repetition on the part of the pupil. Both e pressions thus became a term for the science of tradition, the former signifying the special study of orally transmitted law, the latter the law itself in contrast to the first one meaning the written law. But the e pression is also used for each of the doctrines orally transmitted, and differs from "ala#ha in that the latter signifies the traditional law so far as it is binding, while the former designates it as an object of study. 'urthermore, the word %ishna is applied to the

systematic collection of such doctrines, and finally to that collection which alone has attained canonical recognition, i.e. the collection of $ehuda I. &his collection represents $ewish law codified in that development which it received in the schools of /alestine up to the end of the second century after +hrist. &hrough it the orally transmitted law was finally established along with the written law or the &orah. &he foundation of this collection is formed by the collections which already e isted before $ehuda, particularly that of 1abbi %e2ir. &he %ishna does not pretend to be a collection of sources of the "ala#ha, but merely to teach it. !hether its fi ation in writing was the wor# of $ehuda himself or too# place after him is a debated point, but the former is the more probable theory. &he only *uestion then is how much of it he wrote, in the e tended form which it now presents it could not have been written by him alone. It has evidently received additions in course of time, and in other respects also the te t has been altered. )s regards the subject matter the %ishna is divided into si institutes or Sedarim, for this reason $ew are accustomed to call the &almud Shas. .ach -eder has a number (5-67) of treatises, these are divided into chapters or Peraqim, and each chapter into precepts. &he si institutes and their treatises are as follows4 A. Seder Zera'im (harve !" +ontaining in eleven treatises the laws on the cultivation of the soil and its products. (6) Bera#hoth (benedictions) blessings and prayers, particularly those in daily use. (7) /e2a (corner), concerning the parts of the fields and their products which are to be left to the poor (cf. 8ev., i , 9 s*., iii, 77, :eut., iv, 69 s*.) and in general concerning the poor laws. (;) :emai, more properly :ammai (doubtful), concerning the fruits of the soil of which it is doubtful whether the tithes have been paid. (<) =il2ayim (heterogenea), concerning the unlawful combinations of plants, animals, and garments (cf. 8ev., i , 69, :eut. ii, 9 s*.). (>) -hebi2ith (seventh), i.e. -abbatical year (:eut., v, 6 s*.). (?) &erumoth (heave offerings) for the priests (@um., viii, A s*., :eut., viii, <). (5) %a2asroth (tithes) for the 8evites (@um., viii, 76 s*.). (A) %a2aser sheni (second tithe), (:eut., iv, 77 s*., vi, 67 s*.) which had to be spent at $erusalem. (9) "alla (yeast) (cf. @um., v, 6A s*.). (6B) 2Crla (fores#in) concerning uncircumcised fruits and trees (8ev., i , 7;). (66) Bi##urim (first fruits) brought to the temple (:eut., vi, 6 s*, . . iii, 69). #. Seder M$'ed ( ea $% $& &ea ! " &reats in twelve treatises of the precepts governing rest on the -abbath, the other feast and holy days, as well as fast days. (6) -habbath. (7) 2.rubin (combinations), the means by which one could circumvent especially onerous provisions of the -abbath laws. (;) /esahim (/assover). (<) -he*alim (she#els), treats of the ta of half a she#el for the maintenance of :ivine service in the temple (cf. @eh. , ;;), based upon . ., , 67 s*. (>) 0oma (day), i.e. day of e piation. (?) -u##a (&abernacle), treats of the feast of &abernacles. (5) Beca (egg), ta#en from the first word with which the treatise begins or 0om tob (feast), is concerned with the #inds of wor# permitted or prohibited on festivals.

(A) 1osh hashana (beginning of the year), treats of the civil new year on the first of &ishri (8ev., iii, 7< s*., @um. i , 6 s*.). (9) &a2anith (fast). (6B) %egilla (roll) of .sther, respecting the laws to be observed on the feast of /urim. (66) %o2ed *atan (minor feast), the laws relating to the feasts intervening between the first and last days of the /assover and -u##oth. (67) "agiga (feast-offering), treats (chaps. i and iii) of the duty of pilgrimage to $erusalem and the private offerings on such occasions (cf. :eut., vi, 6? s*.). '. Seder Na him (($me%" .lucidates in seven treatises the laws of marriage and all pertaining thereto, vows, and the marriage laws of the @a3arites. (l) $ebamoth, levirate marriages (:eut., v, > s*.). (7) =ethuboth ("marriage deeds" and marriage settlements). (;) @edarim ("vows") and their annulment. (<) @a3ir (@a3arite, cf. @um., vi). (>) -ota ("suspected woman", cf. @um., v, 66 s*.). (?) (ittin (letters of divorce, cf. :eut., iv, 6 s*.). (5 (iddushin (betrothals). D. Seder Ne)i*i% +dama*e +" . plains in eight treatises civil and criminal law. In this institute are included the .duyyoth, a collection of traditions, and the "aggadic treatise, )both. &he treatises 6-;, Baba =amma (the first gate), Baba meci2a (the middle gate), and Baba bathra (the last gate), originally formed a single treatise, the subdivision of which was caused by its great length (;B chaps.). &hey treat of the laws of property, inheritance, and obligation. Baba =amma treats of damages in a narrow sense (along with theft, robbery, and bodily injury) and the right to damages, Baba meci2a is concerned chiefly with legal *uestions in regard to capital and treats finding, deposits, interest and loans, Baba Bathra is concerned with *uestions of social polity (possessions, limitations, buying and selling, security, inheritance and documents). (<) -anhedrin, treats of the law courts, legal processes, and criminal justice. (>) %a##oth (stripes), treats of punishment by stripes legally ac#nowledged (cf. :eut., v, 6 s*.). (?) -hebu2oth (oaths). (5) 2.duyyoth (test), containing a collection of legal decisions gathered from the testimonies of distinguished authorities. (A) 2)boda Dara (idolatry). (9) 2)both (fathers) or /ir*e )both (sections of fathers) contains ethical ma ims of the &anna2im (7BB B.+. - ).:. 7BB). (6B) "orayoth (decisions), concerning legal decisions and religious *uestions which were erroneously rendered. E. Seder ,$da him ( a-red !hi%* " &reats in twelve treatises of the sacrifices, temple service, and dedicated objects (6) Debahim (animal sacrifices). (7) %enahoth (meat offerings). (;) "ullin (things profane) of the sacrifice of pure and impure animals and of laws concerning food. (<) Be#horoth (first born) of men and animals (cf. . ., iii, 7, 67 s*., 8ev., vii, 7? s*., @um., viii, 6? s*., viii, 6> s*., :eut., v, 69 s*.) (>) 2)ra#hin (valuations), that is e*uivalents to be given for the redemption of persons and things dedicated to (od (8ev., vii, 7 s*., v, 6> s*.). (?) &emura (e change) of a sacred object (8ev., vii, 6B-;;). (5) =erithoth

(e cisions), concerning the sins punished by this penalty, and what was to be done when anyone intentionally committed such a sin. (A) %e2ild (violation) of a sacred object (cf. @um., v, ? s*., 8ev., v, 6> s*.). (9) &amid (continual sacrifice), concerning the daily morning and evening sacrifice and the temple in general. (6B) %iddoth (measurements), a description of the temple and of the temple service. (66) Euinnim ("nest" of birds), of the sacrifices of doves by the poor (8ev., i, 6< s*., ii, A). F. Seder Tehar$!h (.uri&i-a!i$% " &reats in twelve treatises of the ordinances of cleanness and of purifications. (l) =elim (vessels), treats of the conditions under which domestic utensils, garments, etc., become unclean. (7) Chaloth (tents) of the defilement of dwellings by a corpse (@um., i 6< s*.). (;) @ega2im (leprosy). (<) /ara (red heifer, cf. @um., i ). (>) &eharoth (purifications) (euphemistically), treats of the lesser degrees of defilement lasting only till sunset. (?) %i*wa2oth (wells), the condition under which wells and reservoirs are fit to be used for ritual purification. (5) @idda (menstruation). (A) %a#hshirin (preparers), the conditions under which certain articles, by coming in contact with li*uids, become ritually unclean (8ev., i, ;<, ;5, ;A). (9) Dabim (persons afflicted with running issues, cf. 8ev., v). (6B) &ebul yom (immersed at day), i.e. the condition of the person who had ta#en the ritual bath, but who has not been perfectly purified by sunset. (66) 0adayim (hands), treats of the ritual uncleanness of the hands and their purification. (67) 2F*cin (stal#s) of fruits and shells and their ritual uncleanness. In our editions the number of treatises is si ty-three, originally there were only si ty, because the four paragraphs of the treatise Baba #amma, Baba bathra, Baba meci2a, li#ewise -anhedrin and %a##oth, formed only one treatise. &he %ishna e ists in three recensions4 in the manuscripts of editions of the separate %ishna, in the /alestinian &almud in which the commentaries of the )mora2im follow short passages of the %ishna, and in the Babylonian &almud, in which the (emara is appended to an entire chapter of the %ishna. &he contents of the %ishna, aside from the treatises )both and %iddoth, are with few e ceptions "ala#hic. &he language, the so-called %ishna "ebrew or @ew "ebrew, is a fairly pure "ebrew, not without proof of a living development -- enriched by words borrowed from (ree# and 8atin and certain newly-created technical e pressions, which seem partly developed as imitations of 1oman legal formulas. &he %ishna is cited by giving the treatise, chapter, and precept, e.g. 2Bera#h, i, 6. )mong the commentators of the whole %ishna the following deserve special mention4 %aimonides, the "ebrew translation of whose )rabic original is printed in most edition of the %ishna, Cbadia di Bertinoro (d. 6>6B), $om &ob 8ippmann "eller (d. 6?><), $israel 8ipschut3 (his %ishna with +ommentary in ? vols., =Gnigsberg, 6A;B->B). &he first edition of the complete %ishna was at @aples in 6<97. &e ts with "ebrew commentaries e ist in great numbers. Cf importance as a +onformation of the /alestinian version is the edition of !. ". 8owe (+ambridge, 6AA;), after the +ambridge manuscript. )lso deserving of mention are4 "%isna . . . 8atinitate donavit (. 8urenhusius" (te t, 8atin translation, notes, 8atin translation of %aimonides and Cbadia, ? vols., )msterdam,

6?9A-65B;), "%ishnajoth", with punctuation and (erman translation in "ebrew letters, begun by -ammter (Berlin, 6AA5 -- still incomplete), (er. tr. of the %ishna by 1abe (? parts, Cnol3bach, 65?B-?;). I/. THE 0ALESTINIAN TALMUD Cn the basic of the %ishna, juridical discussions were continued, at first in the schools of /alestine, particularly at &iberias, in the third and fourth centuries. &hrough the final codification of the material thus collected, there arose in the second half of the fourth century the so-called $erusalem, more properly /alestinian, &almud. &he usual opinion, which originated with %aimonides, that its author was 1abbi $ochanan, who lived in the third century is untenable because of the names of the later scholars which occur in it. In the /alestinian &almud the te t of the %ishna is ta#en sentence by sentence, and e plained with increasingly casuistic acumen. &he Baraithoth, i.e. the ma ims of the &orah not found in the %ishna, as well as the legal paragraphs are always given in "ebrew, and so are most of the appended elucidations, the remainder is written in a !est )ramaic dialect ((. :alman, "(rammati# des judisch-/alastinischen )ramaisch", 8eip3ig, 69B>). )long with the "ala#ha it contains rich "aggadic material. !hether the /alestinian &almud ever included the entire %ishna is a matter of dispute. &he only parts preserved are the commentaries on the first four -edarim (with the e ception of several chapters and the treatises .duyyoth and )both) and on the three first divisions of the treatise @idda in the si th -eder. &he supposed discovery by -. 'riedlHnder of treatises on the fifth -eder is based upon a forgery (cf. "&heologische 8iteratur3eitung", 69BA, col. >6; s*., and "Deitschr. d. :eutsch. %orgenlandisch. (esellsch.", 8III, 6A<). &he /alestinian &almud is generally cited by giving the treatise, chapter, page, and column after the Jenetian and +racow editions, mostly also the line, indicated by (Kjerus.) or pal., e.g. pal. %a##oth, 7 Bl. ;6d >?. %any scholars cite in the same manner as for the %ishna, but this is not to be recommended. .ditions4 Jenice (Bomberg), 6>7;-7<, +racow, 6?B9, =rotoshin, 6A??, Dhitomir, 6A?B?5, /iotr#ow, 69BB-B7. 'rench translation by %. -chwab, 66 vols., /aris, 6A59-AB, I7 6A9B. -everal treatises are printed with 8atin translations in Fgolini, "&hesaurus anti*uitatum sacrarum", vols. IJII-III, Jenice, 65>>-?>, !unsche, ":er palastinische &almud in seinen haggadischen Bestandteilen ins :eutsche Lberset3t" (Durich, 6AAB). /. #A#1LONIAN TALMUD &he %ishna is said to have been brought to Babylon by )ba )re#a, generally called 1ab (d. 7<5), a pupil of 1abbi $ehuda. In the schools there it became a norm of legal religious life and a basis of juridical discussion. But while in /alestine there was a greater tendency to preserve and propagate what had been handed down, the Babylonian )mora2im developed their interpretation of the law in all directions, which e plains why the Babylonian &almud ac*uired a greater significance for $udaism than the /alestinian. &hus the material grew rapidly and gradually led to a codification, which was underta#en by 1.

)shi (d. <75), head of the school at -ura, and by 1. )bina or 1abbina (d. <99), the last of the )mora im. &he scholars who lived after him (at the end of the fifth and in the first half of the si th centuries), called Sa!ora im ("those who reflect, e amine", because they weighed and also completed what had been written by the )mora2im), are to be regarded as those who really completed the Babylonian &almud. 8i#e the /alestinian, the Babylonian &almud does not include the entire %ishna. In the first and si th divisions only the treatises Bera#hoth and @idda are considered, in the second division -hegalim is omitted, in the fourth .duyyoth and )both, in the fifth %iddoth, (innim, and half of &amid. It is indeed *uestionable if the greater number of these treatises were included in the Babylonian (emara, .duyyoth and )both are e cluded, by reason of the subject matter, while the remainder treat for the most part ordinances which could not be applied outside of /alestine. &he Babylonian &almud therefore includes only ;? 6M7 treatises, but is at least four times the e tent of the /alestinian, although the latter deals with ;9 treatises. &he "aggada is even more fully represented than in the /alestinian. &he language, e cepting the legal paragraphs and the *uotations of the older scholars and /alestinian rabbis, is that of the .ast )ramaic dialect of Babylonia (cf. 8evias, ") (rammar of the )ramaic Idiom contained in the Babylonian &almud", +incinnati, 69BB, %.8. %argolis, "(rammati# des babylonischen &almuds", %unich, 696B). &he Babylonian &almud is cited according to treatise, folio, and page, as the content in nearly all the editions since that of the third Bomberg one (6><A) is the same, e.g. Bera#h 77a. In these editions there are usually appended at the end of the fourth -eder seven small treatises, partly from &almudic, partly from post-&almudic times, among which is the post-&almudic treatise -opherim (directions for the writer and public reader of the &orah). )mong the commentaries the first place belongs to that of 1ashi (d. 66B>), completed by his grandson -amuel ben %e2ir (d. about 665<). +hiefly of a supplementary character are the wor#s of the &osaphists or authors of the Tosaphoth (additions), who lived in 'rance and (ermany during the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. &hey give amplifications and learned e planations of certain treatises. Cther commentaries are enumerated by -trac#, op. cit. infra, 6<9->6. &he Babylonian &almud has often been printed but until the present time a critical edition has remained a desideratum. %aterial for this purpose is furnished by 1aphael 1abbinovic3, among others, in his "Jariae lectiones in %ischnam et in &alm. Babyl.", etc. (6> vols., %unich, 6A?A-A?), Jol. IJI was edited by .hrentreu (/r3emysl, 6A95). -erious mutilations and bungling changes in the te t were caused by the +hristian censorship, at first in the Basle edition (6>5A-A6). &he numerous bic#erings among the $ews had the further conse*uence that they themselves practised censorship. &he e cised passages were partly collected in small treatises, published for the most part anonymously. EDITIONS 1aphael 1abbinovic3, (Ma'amar al hadpasath ha-talmud -- %unich, 6A55), a critical review of the editions of the Babylonian &almud, as a whole or in part since 6<A<. &he first complete edition appeared at Jenice (Bomberg), (67 vols., 6>7B-7;). &he advantage

of this edition consists in its complete character, the te t itself is full of errors. ) certain reputation is enjoyed by the )msterdam edition (6?<<-<A), in which the censured passages have been as far as possible restored. &he edition of 'ran#fort (657B-77) served directly or indirectly as a basis for those which followed. Cf the later editions may be mentioned those of Berlin (6A?7-?A), Jienna (6A?<-57), and Jilna (6AAB-A?). ) *uarto edition, the te t after the editio princeps, with the variants of the %unich manuscripts and a (erman translation, was begun by 8a3arus (oldschmidt in 6A95. Fp to date ? vols., containing the Institutes I, II, IJ, J, and the two first treatises of III have appeared. Fnfortunately this publication is by no means faultless. %.8. 1od#inson, "@ew .dition of the Babylonian &almud", @ew 0or#, 6A9?, %. %iel3iner, "Introduction to the &almud" (+incinnati, 6A9<, @ew 0or#, 69B;), %.8. 1od#inson, "&he "istory of the &almud" (@ew 0or#, 69B;), ".8. -trac#, ".inleitung in den &almud" (8eip3ig 69BA), pp. 6;9-65>, containing an e tensive bibliography of the &almud and of the *uestions concerning it.