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Part 1 - Chapter 3 - Note 19


The portions of the following texts that are the most relevant to the book appear in bold.


Talmud - Mas. Shabbath 152b

Rab Judah assembled ten men every day and they sat in his place. After seven days he [the dead man] appeared to him in a dream and said to him, ‘Thy mind be at rest, for thou hast set my mind at rest.’ R. Abbahu said: The dead man knows all that is said in his presence until the top-stone [golel] closes [the grave].1 R. Hiyya and R. Simeon b. Rabbi differ therein: one maintains, until the top-stone closes [the grave]; whilst the other says, until the flesh rots away. He who says, until the flesh rots away. — because it is written, But his flesh upon him hath pain and his soul within him mourneth.2 He who says, until the top-stone closes [the grave]. — because it is written, and the dust return to the earth as it was, and the spirit return unto God.3

    Our Rabbis taught: ‘And the dust return to the earth as it was, and the spirit return unto God who gave it’: Render it back to him as He gave it to thee, [viz.,] in purity, so do thou [return it] in purity. This may be compared to a mortal king4 who distributed royal apparel to his servants. The wise among them folded it up and laid it away in a chest, whereas the fools among them went and did their work in them. After a time the king demanded his garments: the wise among them returned them to him immaculate, [but] the fools among them returned them soiled. The king was pleased with the wise but angry with the fools. Of the wise he said, ‘Let my robes be placed in my treasury and they can go home in peace’; while of the fools he said, ‘Let my robes be given to the fuller, and let them be confined in prison.’ Thus too, with the Holy One, blessed be He: concerning the bodies of the righteous He says, He entereth into peace, they rest in their beds;5 while concerning their souls He says, yet the soul of my Lord shall be bound up in the bundle of life with the Lord thy God.6 But concerning the bodies of the wicked He says, There is no peace saith the Lord, unto the wicked;7 while concerning their souls He says, and the souls of thine enemies, them shall he sling out, as from the hollow of a sling.8

    It was taught, R. Eliezer said: The souls of the righteous are hidden under the Throne of Glory, as it is said, yet the soul of thine Lord shall be bound up in the bundle of life.8 But those of the wicked continue to be imprisoned,9 while one angel stands at one end of the world and a second stands at the other end, and they sling their souls to each other, for it is said, and the souls of thine enemies, them shall he sling out, as from the hollow of a sling. Rabbah asked R. Nahman: What about those who are intermediate? Had I died I could not have told you this, he replied. Thus did Samuel say: Both these and those [the wicked and the intermediate] are delivered to Dumah;10 these enjoy rest, whereas the others have no rest. R. Mari said: [Even] the righteous are fated to be dust, for it is written, ‘and the dust return to the earth as it was’. Certain diggers were digging in R. Nahman's ground, [when] R. Ahai b. Josiah11 snorted at them. So they went and told R. Nahman, ‘A man snorted at us.’ He went and asked him, ‘Who are you?’ ‘I am Ahai b. Josiah.’ ‘But did not R. Mari say. [Even] the righteous are fated to be dust?’ said he. ‘But who is Mari,’ he retorted ‘I do not know him.’ Yet surely a verse is written, ‘and the dust returns to the earth as it was’? he urged. ‘He who taught you Ecclesiastes did not teach you Proverbs,’ he answered, ‘for it is written, But envy is the rottenness of the bones:12 he who has envy in his heart, his bones rot away. [but] he who has no envy in his heart, his bones do not rot away.’ He then felt him and perceived that there was substance in him. ‘Let my master arise [and come] to my house,’ he invited him. ‘You have thus disclosed that you have not even studied the prophets, for it is written, And ye shall know that I am the Lord, when l open your graves,’13 said he to him, ‘But it is written, for dust art thou, and unto dust thou shalt return?’14 ‘That means one hour before the resurrection of the dead’, replied he.

    A certain Sadducee said to R. Abbahu:15 You maintain that the souls of the righteous are hidden under the Throne of Glory: then how did the bone [- practising] necromancer bring up Samuel by means of his necromancy?16 — There it was within twelve months [of death], he replied. For it was taught: For full [twelve months] the body is in existence and the soul ascends and descends; after twelve months the body ceases to exist
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(1) R. Tam. Rashi: until the coffin-lid is closed, v. Nazir, Sonc. ed., p. 302, n. 5’
(2) I.e., he suffers pain and grief — a sign of consciousness — as long as his flesh is upon him.
(3) Eccl. XII, 7. I.e., immediately the dust — sc. the body — returns to the earth, the spirit returns to God, and there is no further consciousness of earthly matters.
(4) Lit., ‘a king of flesh and blood’.
(5) Isa. LVII, 2.
(6) I Sam. XXV, 29.
(7) Isa. XLVIII, 22.
(8) Sam. ibid.
(9) Lit., ‘muzzled’. Marginal translation: are eternally pressed down — sc. in the sling of destruction.
(10) The guardian angel of the deceased. [The name is probably Silence, which is the meaning of Dumah, personified.]
(11) Who was buried there.
(12) Prov. XIV, 30.
(13) Ezek. XXXVII, 13; i.e., God alone can free men from their graves.
(14) Gen. 111,19.
(15) MS.M. min (v. Glos.). This is preferable as there were no Sadducees in the time of R. Abbahu; cf. Sanh., Sonc. ed., p, 706, n. 8.
(16) v. i Sam, XXVIII, 7. Bones were used in necromancy.


Tanach - Samuel I Chapter 25

29. If men rise up to pursue you, and to seek your soul; the soul of my lord shall be bound in the bundle of life with the Lord your God; and the souls of your enemies, he shall sling out, as from the hollow of a sling.


Talmud - Mas. Chagigah 12b

But why do we have ‘[Eth] the earth’?1 — To put heaven before earth.2

    ‘And the earth was unformed and void’.3 Consider: [Scripture] began at first with heaven, why then does it proceed to relate [first] the work of the earth?4 — The School of R. Ishmael taught: It is like a human king5 who said to his servants: Come early to my door. He rose early and found women and men. Whom does he praise? The ones who are not accustomed to rise early but yet did rise early.6

    It is taught: R. Jose says: Alas for people that they see but know not what they see, they stand but know not on what they stand. What does the earth rest on? On the pillars, for it is said: Who shaketh the earth out of her place, and the pillars thereof tremble.7 The pillars upon the waters, for it is said: To Him that spread forth the earth above the waters.8 The waters upon the mountains, for it is said: The waters stood above the mountains.9 The mountains on the wind, for it is said: For, lo, He that formeth the mountains, and createth the wind.10 The wind upon the storm, for it is said: The wind, the storm maketh its substance.11 Storm is suspended on the arm of the Holy One, blessed be He, for it is said: And underneath12 are the everlasting arms.13 But the Sages say: [The world] rests on twelve pillars,14 for it is said: He set the borders to the peoples according to the number [of the tribes] of the children of Israel.15 And some say seven pillars, for it is said: She hath hewn out her seven piliars.16 R. Eleazar b. Shammua’ says: [It rests] on one pillar, and its name is ‘Righteous’, for it is said: But ‘Righteous’ is the foundation of the world.17

    R. Judah said: There are two firmaments, for it is said: Behold, unto the Lord thy God belongeth heaven, and the heaven of heavens.18 Resh Lakish said: [There are] seven, namely, Wilon,19 Rakia’,20 Shehakim,21 Zebul,22 Ma'on,23 Makon,24 ‘Araboth.25 Wilon serves no purpose except that it enters in the morning and goes forth in the evening26 and renews every day the work of creation, for it is said: That stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain,27 and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in.28 Rakia’ is that in which sun and moon, stars and constellations are set, for it is said: And God set them29 in the firmament [Rakia’] of the heaven.30 Shehakim is that in which millstones stand and grind31 manna for the righteous for it is said: And He commanded the skies [Shehakim] above, and opened the doors of heaven; and He caused manna to rain upon them for food etc.32 Zebul is that in which [the heavenly] Jerusalem33 and the Temple and the Altar are built, and Michael, the great Prince,34 stands and offers up thereon an offering, for it is said: I have surely built Thee a house of habitation [Zebul], a place for Thee to dwell in for ever.35 And whence do we derive that it is called heaven? For it is written: Look down from heaven, and see, even from Thy holy and glorious habitation.36 Ma'on is that in which there are companies of Ministering Angels, who utter [divine] song by night, and are silent by day for the sake of Israel's glory,37 for it is said: By day the Lord doth command His lovingkindness,38 and in the night His song is with me.39

    Resh Lakish said: Whoever occupies himself with [the study of] the Torah by night, the Holy One, blessed be He, draws over him a chord of lovingkindness40 by day, for it is said: ‘By day the Lord doth command His lovingkindness’? Because ‘by night His song41 is with me’. And there are some who say: Resh Lakish said: Whoever occupies himself with the study of the Torah in this world, which is like the night, the Holy One, blessed be He, draws over him a chord of lovingkindness in the world to come, which is like the day,42 for it is said: ‘By day the Lord doth command His lovingkindness, for by night His song is with me’.

    R. Levi said: Whoever leaves off the study of the Torah and occupies himself with idle talk, he is made to eat coals of broom,43 for it is said: They pluck salt-wort through idle talk,44 and the roots of the broom are their food.45

    And whence do we derive that it46 is called heaven? — For it is said: Look forth from Thy holy habitation [ma'on], from heaven.47 Makon48 is that in which there are the stores of snow49 and stores of hail, and the loft of harmful dews and the loft of raindrops,50 the chamber of the whirlwind and storm,51 and the cave of vapour, and their doors are of fire, for it is said: The Lord will open unto thee His good treasure,52 But are these to be found in the firmament? Surely, they are to be found on the earth, for it is written: Praise the Lord from the earth, ye sea-monsters, and all deeps; fire and hail, snow and vapour, stormy wind, fulfilling his word!53 — Rab Judah said in the name of Rab: David entreated concerning them, and caused them to come down to the earth. He said before Him: Lord of the universe, Thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness; let not evil sojourn with Thee;54 righteous art Thou, O Lord, let not evil sojourn in Thy abode.55 And whence do we derive that it56 is called heaven? For it is written: Then hear Thou in heaven, Thy dwelling place [Makon].57

    ‘Araboth is that in which there are Right and Judgment and Righteousness,58 the treasures of life and the treasures of peace and the treasures of blessing, the souls of the righteous and the spirits and the souls59 which are yet to be born, and dew wherewith the Holy One, blessed be He, will hereafter revive the dead. Right and Judgment, for it is written: Right60 and judgment are the foundations of Thy throne.61 Righteousness, for it is written: And He put on righteousness as a coat of mail.62 The treasures of life, for it is written: For with Thee is the fountain of life.63 And the treasures of peace, for it is written: And called it, ‘The Lord is peace’.64 And the treasures of blessing, for it is written: he shall receive a blessing from the Lord.65 The souls of the righteous, for it is written: Yet the soul of my lord shall be bound up in the bundle of life with the Lord thy God.66 The spirits and the souls which are yet to be born, for it is written: For the spirit that enwrappeth itself is from Me, and the souls which I have made.67 And the dew wherewith the Holy One, blessed be He, will hereafter revive the dead, for it is written: A bounteous rain didst Thou pour down, O God; when Thine inheritance was weary, Thou didst confirm it.68 There [too] are the Ofanim69 and the Seraphim,70 and the Holy Living Creatures,71 and the Ministering Angels,72 and the Throne of God; and the King, the Living God, high and exalted, dwells over them in ‘Araboth, for it is said: Extol Him that rideth upon Araboth73 whose name is the Lord.74 And whence do we derive that it75 is called heaven? From the word ‘riding’, which occurs in two Biblical passages. Here it is written: ‘Extol Him that rideth upon Araboth’. And elsewhere it is written: Who rideth upon the heaven as thy help.76 And darkness and cloud and thick darkness surround Him, for it is said: He made darkness His hiding-place, His pavilion round about Him, darkness of waters, thick clouds of skies.77 But is there any darkness before Heaven?78 For behold it is written: He revealeth the deep and secret things; He knoweth, what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with Him.79 — There is no contradiction: the one [verse]80
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(1) I,e., the first Eth in the verse has been explained; but what is the purpose of the second?
(2) I.e., to show that the creation of the heaven preceded that of the earth. Had this second Eth been omitted, I might have thought that heaven and earth were created at the same time.
(3) Gen. I, 2.
(4) I.e., its development from a state of dark chaos to light and ordered life.
(5) Lit., ‘a king of flesh and blood’.
(6) Rashi explains the application of the parable thus: Since heaven was summoned to appear first, the earth was in the position of one not accustomed to rise early; furthermore, all the work of the earth is slow, whilst the work of heaven is swift. Nevertheless, the earth appeared equally early with heaven, for they were created at the same time (according to the view of the Sages, v. p. 66), therefore Scripture begins to relate the work of the earth first. But Maharsha explains that the earth obeyed God's will first and came into being before heaven (according to the view of Beth Hillel, ibid.) just as the women in the parable actually came before the men.
(7) Job IX, 6.
(8) Ps. CXXXVI, 6.
(9) Ibid. CIV, 6.
(10) Amos IV, 13. The mention of the mountains and the wind in the same verse shows that the former were dependent or suspended upon the latter.
(11) So Rashi. E.V., ‘Stormy wind, fulfilling His word. Ps. CXLVIII, 8.
(12) Sc. all creation.
(13) Deut. XXXIII, 27.
(14) The pillars here refer to those mentioned by R. Jose (v. supra), who, however, did not give their number.
(15) Deut. XXXII, 8.
(16) Prov. IX, 1.
(17) Ibid. X, 25. E.V., ‘But the righteous is an everlasting foundation’. Maharsha compares this discussion of the number of the pillars with the discussion of the number of the precepts in Mak., Sonc. ed., pp. 169f.
(18) Deut. X, 14.
(19) I.e., ‘Curtain’, from Lat. Velum.
(20) I.e., ‘Expanse, firmament’.
(21) Lit., ‘Clouds’, from
eja, ‘dust’ (cf. Isa. XL, 15).
(22) B.D.B.: ‘Elevation, height, lofty abode’; N.H., ‘Temple’. Jastrow: ‘(place of offering or entertainment) residence, especially Temple’.
(23) I.e., ‘Dwelling, habitation’.
(24) I.e., ‘Fixed or established place, foundation, residence’.
(25) V. Ps, LXVIII, 5. Levy: Perhaps from
crg, ‘to be dark’ (cf. crg evening) and syn. with kprg: (thick darkness, heavy cloud, in which God dwells; cf. Ex. XX, 18).
(26) According to Rashi, Wilon (‘Curtain’) draws in every morning, and thus causes the light of day to become visible; in the evening it draws out and hides the daylight. This process constitutes the renewal of the work of creation. But Tosaf. explains that Wilon produces the light of day, and when it withdraws at night darkness prevails.
(27) Thus there is a curtain-like heaven.
(28) Isa. XL, 22.
(29) I.e., the heavenly luminaries.
(30) Gen. I, 17.
(31) There is probably a play here on the meaning of
eja (the root of shehakim), which means ‘to rub away, pulverize, grind’ (cf. Ex. XXX, 36 and Job, XIV, 19).
(32) Ps. LXXVIII, 23, 24.
(33) Cf. Ta'an. 5a: ‘The Holy One blessed be He, said: I shall not enter the Jerusalem which is above, until I enter the Jerusalem which is below’.
(34) Michael is Israel's Guardian Angel; cf. Dan. XII, 1 and Yoma 77a. Num. Rab. s. 2, Hul. 40a.
(35) I Kings VIII, 13; the earthly Temple corresponds to the heavenly Sanctuary.
(36) Isa. LXIII, 15.
(37) Because Israel utters God's praise by day.
(38) By silencing the angels by day. God shows lovingkindness to the children of Israel, who are thus permitted to win divine grace by their prayer. Cf. also A.Z. 3b on the same verse.
(39) Ps. XLII, 9. I.e., by night the song of the angels joins mine (says Israel), which I uttered by day (Rashi).
(40) I.e., of His protection.
(41) I.e., the Torah.
(42) Cf. Aboth IV, 16,17.
(43) This is the punishment for slander and a figurative expression for Gehinnom; cf. Yal. Shim. s. 120, Midr. Till. to Ps. CXX, and Gen. Rab. 98.
(44) Heb.
jha, which may represent two totally different words of identical spelling: one means ‘shrub’ (or, according to some, ‘wormwood’) which is the natural meaning here, the other means ‘complaint, musing, talk’, which is the sense in which it is homiletically understood by R. Levi.
(45) Job. XXX, 4.
(46) I.e., Ma'on: the explanation of the seven heavens is here resumed.
(47) Deut. XXVI, 15.
(48) According to Rashi, this heaven contains stores of punishments, the snow etc. being employed not for the world's benefit, but for retribution, Tosaf., however, holds that the contents of Ma'on are used for good as well as evil, and compares Ta'an. 3b and Isa. LV, 10.
(49) For these stores cf. Job XXXVIII, 22f also Isa. XXIX, 6.
(50) Rashi: to smite down the produce.
(51) Omitted by R. Elijah of Wilna,
(52) Deut, XXVIII, 12; implying also the existence of a bad store, i.e., of punishments; but the "Ein Jacob’ reads here Jer. L, 25.
(53) Ps. CXLVIII, 7, 8.
(54) Ibid. V, 5.
(55) Note how the Talmudic explanation of the verse transforms the negative description of God into a positive one, and changes (‘with Thee’ into ‘in thy abode’ to prevent any misconception about God's perfection.
(56) I.e., Makon.
(57) I Kings VIII, 39.
(58) Heb.
vesm, which implies righteous actions and is often used in the sense of charity.
(59) Rashi explains that either ‘spirits’ and ‘souls’ are synonymous, or else ‘spirit’ means the soul that has bodily form (ectoplasm?).
(60) E.V. ‘Righteousness’.
(61) Ps. LXXXIX, 15.
(62) Isa LIX, 17.
(63) Ps.XXXVI, 10.
(64) Judg. VI, 24. Rashi renders: He (the Lord) called it (peace) unto Him.
(65) Ps. XXIV, 5.
(66) 1 Sam. XXV, 29.
(67) Isa. LVII, 1.
(68) Ps. LXVIII, 10. The verse refers to the Revelation at Sinai, when, according to the Midrash, the souls of the children of Israel momentarily left their bodies, but God with His bounteous rain or dew of resurrection revived them. Cf. Cant. Rab. to Cant. V, 6.
(69) Lit., ‘Wheels’, i.e., wheel-like angels; v. Ezek. I, 15f.
(70) V. Isa. VI, 2; in Rabbinic literature they are understood to be angels of fire, cf. Deut. Rab. s. 11. But v. B. D. B. s.v.
(71) V. Ezek. I, 5f.
(72) Apparently distinct from those dwelling in Ma'on (v. p. 70).
(73) A.V. ‘upon the heavens’; R.V. ‘through the deserts’.
(74) Ps. LXVIII, 5.
(75) I.e., Araboth.
(76) Deut. XXXIII, 26.
(77) Ps. XVIII, 12.
(78) I.e., God.
(79) Dan. II, 22.
(80) I.e., the latter.


Talmud - Mas. Rosh HaShana 16b

and then again sound a teki'ah and teru'ah standing? — It is so as to confuse the Accuser.1

    R. Isaac further said: If the shofar is not sounded2 at the beginning of the year, evil will befall at the end of it. Why so? Because the Accuser has not been confused.

    R. Isaac further said: Every year which is poor3 at its opening becomes rich before it ends, as it says, From the beginning of the year — where the word is spelt meroshith4 — ‘unto the end’; such a year is destined to have a ‘latter end’.5

    R. Isaac further said: Man is judged only according to his actions up to the time of judgment,6 as it says, God hath heard the voice of the lad as he is there.7

    R. Isaac further said: Three things call a man's iniquities to mind, namely, a shaky wall,8 the scrutinizing of prayer,9 and calling for [Divine] judgment on one's fellow man. For R. Abin said: He who calls down [Divine] judgment on his neighbour is himself punished first [for his own sins], as it says, And Sarai said unto Abram, My wrong be upon thee,10 and it is written later, And Abraham came to mourn for Sarah and to weep for her.11

    R. Isaac further said: Four things cancel the doom of a man, namely, charity, supplication, change of name and change of conduct. Charity, as it is written, And charity delivereth from death.12 Supplication, as it is written, Then they cried unto the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them out of their distresses.13 Change of name, as it is written, As for Sarai thy wife, thou shalt not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall her name be;14 and it continues, And I will bless her and moreover I will give thee a son of her. Change of conduct, as it is written, And God saw their works, and it continues, and God repented of the evil which he said he would do unto them and he did it not.15 Some say that change of place [also avails], as it is written, Now the Lord said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and it proceeds, and I will make of thee a great nation.16 And the other [ — why does he not reckon this]? — In that case it was the merit of the land of Israel which availed him.

    R. Isaac further said: It is incumbent on a man to go to pay his respects to his teacher on festivals, as it says, Wherefore wilt thou go to him today? It is neither new moon nor sabbath,17 from which we infer that on New Moon and Sabbath18 one ought to go.’19

    R. Isaac further said: A man should purify himself for the festival, as it says, and their carcasses ye shall not touch.20 It has been taught to the same effect: ‘And their carcasses ye shall not touch’. I might think that [ordinary] Israelites are cautioned not to touch carcasses. Therefore it says, Say unto the priests the sons of Aaron;21 [which shows that] the sons of Aaron are cautioned but ordinary Israelites are not cautioned. May we not then argue a fortiori: Seeing that in the case of a serious uncleanness,22 while the priests are cautioned Israelites are not cautioned, how much less [are they likely to be cautioned] in the case of a light uncleanness!23 What then am I to make of the words, ‘and their carcasses ye shall not touch’? — On the festival.

    R. Kruspedai said in the name of R. Johanan: Three books are opened [in heaven] on New Year, one for the thoroughly wicked,24 one for the thoroughly righteous, and one for the intermediate. The thoroughly righteous are forthwith inscribed definitively in the book of life; the thoroughly wicked are forthwith inscribed definitively in the book of death;25 the doom of the intermediate is suspended from New Year till the Day of Atonement; if they deserve well, they are inscribed in the book of life; if they do not deserve well, they are inscribed in the book of death. Said R. Abin, What text tells us this? — Let them be blotted out of the book of the living, and not be written with the righteous.26 ‘Let them be blotted out from the book — this refers to the book of the wicked. ‘Of life — this is the book of the righteous. ‘And not be written with the righteous’ — this is the book of the intermediate. R. Nahman b. Isaac derives it from here: And if not, blot me, I pray thee, out of thy book which thou hast written,27 ‘Blot me, I pray thee’ — this is the book of the wicked. ‘Out of thy book’ — this is the book of the righteous. ‘Which thou has written’ — this is the book of the intermediate.

    It has been taught: Beth Shammai say, There will be three groups at the Day of Judgment28 — one of thoroughly righteous, one of thoroughly wicked, and one of intermediate. The thoroughly righteous will forthwith be inscribed definitively as entitled to everlasting life; the thoroughly wicked will forthwith be inscribed definitively as doomed to Gehinnom, as it says. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life and some to reproaches and everlasting abhorrence.29 The intermediate will go down to Gehinnom
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(1) Heb. ‘Satan’. The devotion of the Jews to the precepts nullifies Satan's accusation against them (Rashi). [The Shofar on New Year is blown twice: once at the close of the morning prayer and the reading of the Law when the congregation is seated, and again during the Musaf prayers while the people stand. According to J.R.H. IV, 8 the Shofar was originally blown only at the morning service, whence it was transferred to a later hour in the Musaf because their enemies on one occasion took the Shofar blasts early in the morning as a call to arms, whereupon they attacked the Jews. The custom of blowing the Shofar at Musaf service was retained even after the rite had been restored to the morning service].
(2) [This does not apply where New Year falls on Sabbath, in which case the Shofar may not be blown, but where the rite was omitted through some other cause (Tosaf.)].
(3) I.e., in which Israel humble themselves and make themselves poor in spirit.
(4) Defectively, and can be read
,harn from the poverty of’.
(5) Apparently there is an allusion here to the verse, ‘for the latter end of that man is peace’. Ps. XXXVII.
(6) And not in view of those which he is likely to commit at some later time. Lit., ‘of that hour’.
(7) Gen. XXI, 17. Stress is laid on the words as he is there (E.V. ‘where he is’); Ishmael was still righteous, whatever he was destined to become in the future.
(8) By passing under a shaky wall a man, as it were, ‘tempts Providence’.
(9) Lit., ‘speculation in prayer’. To see whether it produces an effect or not. [Or, ‘expectation of the immediate grant of one's request’. The offence lies in the presumption of claiming that God must answer prayer of any kind whatsoever. V. Abrahams, I, Pharisaism and Gospels II, 78ff].
(10) Gen. XVI, 5.
(11) Which shows that Sarah died first. Ibid. XXIII, 2.
(12) Prov. X, 2 (E.V. ‘righteousness’).
(13) Ps. CVII, 6.
(14) Gen. XVII, 15.
(15) Jonah III, 10.
(16) Gen. XII, 1, 2.
(17) II Kings IV, 23.
(18) Which is a generic name for all holy days.
(19) [R. Hananel's text reads on ‘But we have said (only) on festivals (whereas the verse speaks of New Moon and Sabbaths)? — If the teacher resides near him he must go to pay him his respects every Sabbath and New Moon; if he resides at a long distance, he must go to pay him his respects (only) on Festivals].
(20) Lev. XI, 8.
(21) Lev. XXI, 1. The text continues, there shall none defile himself for the dead among his people.
(22) That of a dead body.
(23) That of an animal carcass.
(24) I.e. , those whose bad deeds definitely outweigh their good.
(25) The life and death in the future world (i.e., of the soul) is meant. V. Tosaf. s.v.
ihn,jbu .
(26) Ps. LXIX, 29.
(27) Ex. XXXII, 32.
(28) When the dead will arise in the flesh. V. Tosaf. s.v.
ouhk .
(29) Dan. XII, 2.


Midrash Rabbah - Leviticus XVIII:1

1. SPEAK UNTO THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL, AND SAY UNTO THEM: WHEN ANY MAN HATH AN ISSUE OUT OF HIS FLESH. etc. (XV, 1 f.). This [i.e. the lesson to be derived] is indicated in what is written, Remember then thy Creator (bore'eka) in the days of thy youth (Eccl. XII, 1). We have learnt in the Mishnah1: ‘Akabiah b. Mahalaleel said: Apply thy mind to three considerations, and thou wilt not come into the power of sin: know whence thou camest: from a fetid drop; whither thou art going: to a place of dust, of worm, and of maggot; and before whom thou art destined to give an account and reckoning: before the supreme King of kings, the Holy One, blessed be He.
R. Abba b. Kahana said in the name of R. Pappai, and R. Joshua of Siknin in the name of R. Levi: Those three things ‘Akabiah derived from the one word,2 viz.: ’Remember then bore'eka in the days of thy youth.’ [Read as] be'erka (thy well), the word refers to the putrefying [seminal] fluid; [read as] boreka (thy pit) it refers to worms and maggots3; [read as] bore'eka (thy Creator) it means the supreme King of kings before whom man is destined to render an account and a reckoning. ’In the days of thy youth’ means in the days of thy youth whilst thy strength is still with thee; Before the evil days come (ib.), i.e. the days of old age; And the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say: I have no choice4 in them (ib.) means the days of the Messiah in which there will be neither merit nor guilt5; Before the sun, and the light and the moon are darkened (ib. 2). ’ The sun’ means the face, ’the light’ means the forehead, ’the moon’ means the nose, ’ the stars ‘ means the heads of the cheek-bones. And the clouds return after the rain (ib.). R. Levi gave two interpretations, one applying to scholars and the other to the ignoramuses. As applied to scholars it means: When [in old age] one wants to weep, his eyes over
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(1) Ab. III, 1 (Sonc. ed.), p. 26.
(2) So Eccl. R. ad loc.
(3) I.e. the grave.
(4) Interpreted by the Haggadist as the choice between good and evil.
(5) Man's deeds will be spontaneously good.


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flow1 with tears; as applied to the ignoramuses his explanation was: When [in old age] one wishes to pass water, the excretion of faeces take place first.2 In the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble, etc. (ib. 3), refers to the ribs3 of man; And the strong men shall bow themselves refers to his legs3; R. Hiyya b. Nahman4 said it refers to his arms. And the grinders cease refers to the stomach 5; Because they are few refers to the teeth; And those that look out (ha-rototh) shall be darkened in the windows refers to the eyes; R. Hiyya b. Nehemiah6 said it refers to the laps of the lungs (re'ah), whence the voice proceeds. And the door shall be shut in the street (ib. 4) refers to the orifices in a human being, which are like doors opening and closing. When the sound of the grinding is low, i.e. because the stomach does not grind; And one shall start up at the voice of a bird: An old man hearing the sound of twittering birds says in his heart: ' Robbers have come to overpower me ‘; And all the daughters of music shall be brought low refers to the lips; R. Hiyya b. Nehemiah said it refers to the reins; these calculate whilst the heart decides. Also when they shall be afraid of that which is high (ib. 5)--when they say to an old man: ‘Go to such-and-such a place,’ he asks: ‘Are there steps to go up there? Are there steps to go down there?’ And terrors shall be in the way. R. Abba b. Kahana and R. Levi gave varying interpretations. R. Abba b. Kahana said: The terrors associated with travelling fall upon him. The other said: He draws boundaries thus: ' As far as this place I can go, as far as that place I cannot go.’ 7 And the almond shall blossom refers to the luz (nut) of the spinal column.8 Hadrian, may his bones be crushed, asked R. Joshua b. Hananiah, saying: ‘From which part of the body will the
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(1) Sc. uncontrollably.
(2) A sign of lack of control over natural functions.
(3) So Radal. In our (Wilna) version these explanations have changed places.
(4) Or Nehemiah, v. infra, n. 6.
(5) More exactly: The psalterium.
(6) In Eccl. R. ad loc. this is the name in the whole passage.
(7) While it is possible that this comment is based on a particular (but, so far, unrecognisable) interpretation of the Hebrew in the text, the sense is that by the terrors in the way is meant the old man's fear lest a long journey overtax his ~trength.
(8) Emended text (Radal) in accordance with Eccl. R. ad loc.


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Holy One, blessed be He, in the Time to Come, cause man to sprout forth? ' He answered: ' From the nut of the spinal column.’ Said he: ‘How can you convince me?’ He thereupon brought one before him; he put it in water, but it was not dissolved; he let it pass through millstones, but it was not ground; he put it in fire, but it was not burnt; he put it on an anvil and began beating it with a hammer, but the anvil was flattened out, and the hammer was split, but all this had no effect.--And the grasshopper shall drag itself along refers to the ankles. And the caperberry (abiyyonah) shall fail refers to [sexual] desire (ta'awuh) which brings about peace between husband and wife.
R. Simeon b. Halafta went to greet Rabbi every new moon. When he had grown old he was no longer able to go. One day he did go. Rabbi asked him: ‘What is the matter that you have not been coming up to me as you were wont? ' R. Simeon answered: ‘The distant have become near and the near have become distant, two have turned into three, that which makes peace in the home has ceased.’ (An explanation [of the foregoing]: ‘The distant have become near ' means: The eyes which used to see at a distance do not now see even near; ‘The near have become distant’ means: The ears which heard the first time, do not now hear even at the hundredth time [of speaking]; ' Two have turned into three’ means a stick in addition to one's two legs; ‘That which makes peace between husband and wife’ means [carnal] desire.) Because man goeth to his eternal home. It says not ‘eternal home’, but ‘his eternal home’ which teaches us that every righteous man has an eternity of his own.
This may be compared to the case of a king who enters a city accompanied by generals, governors, and soldiers; though they all enter by the same gate; everyone is accommodated in accordance with his rank. Even so it is that although all experience the taste of death, every righteous man has an eternity of his own. And the mourners go about the streets refers to the worms. Before the silver cord is snapped asunder (ib. 6) refers to the spinal column; And the golden bowl (gullah) is shattered, refers to the skull (gulgoleth). R. Hiyya b. Nehemiah said: it refers to the gullet (gargereth)

Lev. 225

which banishes (galah) the gold and makes the silver run.1 And the pitcher is broken at the fountain refers to the belly. R. Abba2 b. R. Pappai and R. Joshua of Siknin said in the name of R. Levi: After three days the belly of a man bursts open and passes on its contents to the mouth, saying: ' Take back what you have acquired dishonestly or by violence and given to me.’ R. Haggai, in the name of R. Isaac, derived this from the following passage: And I will spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your sacrifices (Mal. II, 3).  R. Abba b. R. Pappai and R. Joshua of Siknin said in the name of R. Levi: For three days [after death] the soul hovers over the body, intending to re-enter it, but as soon as it sees its appearance change, it departs, as it is written, When his flesh that is on him is distorted,3 his soul will mourn over him (Job XIV, 22). Bar Kappara said: The full force of mourning lasts for three days. Why? Because [for that length of time] the shape of the face is recognisable, even as we have learnt in the Mishnah4: Evidence [to prove a man's death]5 is admissible only in respect of the full face, with the nose, and only [by one who has seen the corpse] within three days [after death].--And the wheel (galgal) falleth shattered into the pit (Eccl. loc. cit.). Two Amoraim [gave different interpretations of the word ’galgal’]. One said: ’ Galgal’ denotes something like the boulders (galgalaya)6 of Sepphoris; the other said: Like the clods6 of Tiberias, as it is said, The clods of the valley are sweet unto him (Job XXI, 33)  And the dust returneth to the earth as it was, and the spirit
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(1) Through gluttony. Read, with Eccl.
vkdn and vmhrn .
(2) Not Hiyya, as in our text.
(3) Lit. ‘pained’, but probably the Haggadist understood: ‘distorted,’ marred in appearance, cf. the use of the word II Kings III, 19.
(4) Yeb. XVI, 3.
(5) Enabling the widow to marry again.
(6) So Radal, who says that it appears as if in Sepphoris they used to cover a grave by rolling (galal) a boulder on to it, whereas in Tiberias they did it with clods of earth. However others, e.g. M. K. Mah., Jast. and Levy, say galgalaya of Sepphoris means buckets of water from wells, or wheels for drawing up from such deep wells. V. Klein, op. cit. p. 66.


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returneth unto God who gave it (Eccl. XII, 7). R. Phinehas and R. Hilkiah, in the name of R. Simon, explained: When does the spirit return to God who gave it?--When the dust returns to the earth as it was1 but if not, The souls of thine enemies, then shall He sling out, as from the hollow of a sling (I Sam. XXV, 29). R. Samuel b. Nahman taught this in the name of R. Abdimi of Haifa: This may be compared to the case of a priest who was a haber2 who handed to a priest who was an ’Am ha'Arez3 a loaf of terumah, and said to him: ' See, I am [ritually] clean and my house is clean, and the loaf I have given you is clean; if you give it to me in the same way as I have given it to you, it will be well, but if not, I shall throw it away in your presence.’ Even so had the Holy One, blessed be He, said to man: ' See, I am pure and My abode is pure, and My ministers are pure, and the soul I have given you is pure; if you return it to Me as I am giving it to you, it will be well, but if not, I shall throw it away.’ This is so in the days of a man's old age, but in the days of his youth, if he has sinned, he is punished by issues or by leprosy. For this reason did Moses warn Israel, saying to them: WHEN ANY MAN HATH AN ISSUE OUT OF HIS FLESH, etc.


Midrash Rabbah - Ecclesiastes XII:7

7. AND THE DUST RETURNETH TO THE EARTH AS IT WAS (XII, 7). R. Phinehas and R. Hilkiah said in the name of R. Simon: When is it that THE SPIRIT RETURNETH UNTO GOD WHO GAVE IT? When THE DUST RETURNETH TO THE EARTH4 AS IT WAS; otherwise The souls of Thine6 enemies, them shall He sling out, as from the hollow of a sling (I Sam. XXV, 29). R. Samuel b. Nahmani said in the name of R. Abdimi of Haifa: It may be compared to a kohen haber who handed to a kohen ‘am ha'arez a loaf of bread made from terumah in a state of ritual purity, and said to him, ' See I am ritually clean, my house is clean, my utensils are clean, and this loaf which I give you is clean; if you return it to me in the same condition that I hand it to you, well and good; otherwise I will burn it in your presence.’ Similarly spake the Holy One, blessed be He, to man, ‘Behold I am pure, My habitation is pure, My attendants are pure, and the soul which I gave you is pure. If you return it to Me as I give it to you, well and good: otherwise I will burn it in your presence.’ All this applies in the days of his old
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(4) If the person has lived righteously.
(6) Here understood as the enemies of God, the wicked.


Eccl. 303

age; but as for the days of his youth, if he sins he is punished with a flux of blood and leprosy. Therefore Moses warned Israel, When any man hath an issue out of his flesh (Lev. XV, 2).1  R. Joshua b. Levi2 interpreted the text in connection with the Sanctuary. The prophet said to Israel, REMEMBER THEN THY CREATOR: remember who created you while His selection3 of you still endures, while the covenant of the priesthood still endures, as it is said, And I did choose him out of all the tribes of Israel to be My priest (I Sam. II, 28); while the covenant of the Levites still endures, as it is said, For the Lord thy God hath chosen him out of all thy tribes (Deut. XVIII, 5); while the covenant with Jerusalem still endures, as it is said, The city which I have chosen (I Kings XI, 32); while the covenant with the kingship of the house of David still endures, as it is said, He chose David also His servant (Ps. LXXVIII, 70); while the Sanctuary still endures, as it is said, For now have I chosen and hallowed this house (II Chron. VII, 16), while you [Israel] still endure, as it is said, The Lord thy God hath chosen thee to be His own treasure (Deut. VII, 6).  BEFORE THE EVIL DAYS COME: these are the days of the exile, as it is stated, Ye that are made to wander for4 the evil day (Amos VI, 3); AND THE YEARS DRAW NIGH WHEN THOU SHALT SAY that ancestral merit has ceased [to protect Israel]. BEFORE THE SUN... DARKENED: i.e. [the downfall of] the kingship of the house of David, as it is said, And his throne as the sun before Me (Ps. LXXXIX, 37); AND THE LIGHT: i.e. the Torah, as it is said, For the commandment is a lamp and the Torah is light (Prov. VI, 23); AND THE MOON: i.e. the Sanhedrin, for it is written, It shall be established for ever as the moon (Ps. LXXXIX, 38); AND THE STARS: these are the disciples of the Sages; AND THE CLOUDS
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(1) The ending is due to the fact that the passage is quoted from Lev. R. XVIII, 1, which is the Midrash to Lev. XV, 2.
(2) In Lam. R., Prologue XVIII, in which this dictum occurs, it is assigned to R. Joshua of Siknin in the name of R. Levi.
(3) In the Heb. this resembles the word for YOUTH.
(4) E.V.: ’Ye that put far away.’


Eccl. 304

RETURN AFTER THE RAIN: you find that all the hard blows which Jeremiah prophesied for them befell them only after the destruction of the Temple.1
IN THE DAY WHEN THE KEEPERS OF THE HOUSE SHALL TREMBLE: this refers to the watches of the priests and the Levites2; AND THE STRONG MEN SHALL BOW THEMSELVES: these are the priests. R. Abba b. Kahana said: Aaron consecrated twenty-two thousand Levites on one day,3 as it is said, And Aaron offered them for a sacred gift before the Lord (Num. VIII, 21). R. Hanina said: The bird's crop is a light thing, yet the priest would take hold of it with one hand and, taking aim, throw it backwards behind the [altar] step, a distance of exactly thirty-two cubits. AND THE GRINDERS CEASE: these are the great collections of Mishnah as, e.g., the Mishnah of R. Akiba, the Mishnah of R. Hiyya and R. Hoshaya, and the Mishnah of Bar Kappara.4 BECAUSE THEY ARE FEW: this is the Talmud which is mingled with them. AND THOSE THAT LOOK OUT SHALL BE DARKENED IN THE WINDOWS: you find that when Israel was exiled to Babylon, not one of them was able to expound his learning. AND THE DOORS SHALL BE SHUT IN THE STREET: these are the doors of Nehushta the daughter5 of Elnathan which were wide open. WHEN THE SOUND OF THE GRINDING IS LOW: because they neglected words of Torah.6 R. Samuel b. Nahmani said: Words of Torah
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(1) ‘The clouds returning after the rain’ is understood as meaning that troubles come after troubles. Similarly the disaster of the destruction of the Temple was followed by the disasters prophesied by Jeremiah.
(2) Tradition was undecided whether the night was divided in the Temple into three or four watches: v. Ber. 3b.
(3) This and the following are cited to illustrate the extraordinary strength of the priests. The Levites numbered 22,000 (Num. III, 39), and Aaron is said to have presented (the Heb. Iiterally means waved) them all on one day.
(4) V.p. 58, n. 2.
(5) V. II Kings XXIV, 8. She was the mother of king Jehoiachin. There was a tradition that the doors of her house were always open to offer hospitality, but in the national disaster they were closed. The text has beth (house of) instead of bath (daughter of).
(6) GRINDING is explained as Torah-study in the same manner that GRINDERS was defined as Mishnah collections.


Eccl. 305

are compared to grinding: as grinding does not cease day or night, so in connection with words of Torah it is stated, Thou shalt meditate therein day and night (Josh I. 8). AND ONE SHALL START UP AT THE VOICE OF A BIRD1: R. Levi said: For eighteen years a Bath Kol used to cry out to Nebuchadnezzar and summon him, saying, ‘Wicked servant, go up and destroy thy Master's house, because His children are rebellious and do not obey Him. AND ALL THE DAUGHTERS OF MUSIC SHALL BE BROUGHT LOW: because [Nebuchadnezzar] went up and stopped the singing in the Temple, as it is said, They drink not wine with a song (Isa. XXIV, 9).
ALSO WHEN THEY SHALL BE AFRAID OF THAT WHICH IS HIGH: [Nebuchadnezzar] was afraid of Him who is supreme in the universe, the Supreme King of kings. AND TERRORS SHALL BE IN THE WAY: [R. Abba b. Kahana said:] the terror of the journey fell upon him; but R. Levi said: He began to consult omens2 on the way, as it is said, For the king of Babylon standeth at the parting of the way (Ezek. XXI, 26), i.e. an arm3 branching off at the top of two roads which divide off into two directions. Two roads were there, one leading to the wilderness and the other leading to an inhabited place [Jerusalem]. To use divination (ib.): he began to practise divination using the name of Rome but without success, the name of Alexandria but without success, then the name of Jerusalem and it succeeded. He shaketh arrows to and fro (ib.), in the name of Rome but without success, in the name of Alexandria but without success, then in the name of Jerusalem and it succeeded. He tried to kindle torches and lanterns in the name of Rome but they would not light, in the name of Alexandria but they would not light, then in the name of Jerusalem and they lit up. He floated ships on the river Euphrates in the name of Rome but they would not go, in the name of Alexandria but they would not go, then in the name of Jerusalem and they
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(1) Warsaw ed. inserts: this refers to Nebuchadnezzar.
(2) The meaning of the original is uncertain.
(3) Sign-post at the cross-roads.


Eccl. 306

went. He inquireth of the teraphim (ib.), i.e. of his idols. He looketh at the liver (ib.): R. Levi said: Like an Arab who slays a lamb and inspects its liver [for omens]. In his right hand is the lot of Jerusalem (ib. 27): the lot concerning Jerusalem appeared in his right hand.1 To set battering-rams: [this is understood to mean that he appointed] generals. To open the mouth for the slaughter: this refers to executioners. To lift up the voice with shouting: this alludes to trumpets. To set battering-rams against the gates: he arranged camps of besiegers. To cast up mounds: i.e. stones for the catapults. And to build forts: i.e. scalingladders. As for all these things, It shall be unto them2 as a false divination in their sight who have weeks upon weeks (ib. 28): the prophet said to Israel, ‘If you had been worthy you would have read in the Torah which is capable of exposition in seven times seven ways,3 but now that you are unworthy, behold Nebuchadnezzar comes and practises divinations against you seven times seven.’ And what was the purpose of all this? But it bringeth iniquity to remembrance, that they may be taken (ib.): this alludes to the blood of Zechariah.4
AND THE ALMOND-TREE SHALL BLOSSOM: i.e. the prophecy of Jeremiah, as it is stated, I see a rod of an almond-tree (Jer. I, 11). R. Eleazar said: As an almond-tree takes twenty-one days from the time it blossoms to the time when its fruit is ripe, similarly the whole decree [concerning the destruction of the Temple] only lasted [the twenty-one days] from the seventeenth of Tammuz to the ninth of Ab.5
AND THE GRASSHOPPER SHALL DRAG ITSELF ALONG: this alludes to the image made by Nebuchadnezzar,6 as it is said, Nebuchadnezzar the king made an
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(1) The lot which came up in the right hand was the decisive one.
(2) Perhaps (as ‘E.J.) the Midrash renders, And it was unto them, etc., i.e. the Israelites regarded the results of all this divination, which pointed to their own destruction, as false and worthless.
(3) The expert in Torah, it was said, is able to adduce 49 reasons for and against in any disputed point of law.
(4) V. p. 263.
(5) On the first date the walls of Jerusalem were pierced and on the second the Temple was destroyed.
(6) The image, despite its height, is contemptuously called GRASSHOPPER.


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image of gold whose height was threescore cubits, and the breadth thereof six cubits (Dan. III, 1). R. Johanan said: According to this it is stated that an object with the height of sixty cubits and a breadth of six cubits requires a circumference of one in three [to stand erect]!1 R. Bani said: It was like a reed2: he set it up but it fell, set it up again and it fell. R. Haggai said in the name of R. Isaac: It did not stand erect until he brought all the silver and gold in Jerusalem and poured it out as a layer and supported the image upon its feet, as it is stated, They shall cast their silver in the streets, and their gold shall be as an unclean thing (Ezek. VII, 19).
AND THE CAPERBERRY (ABIYYONAH) SHALL FAIL: this refers to ancestral (aboth)3 merit; BECAUSE MAN GOETH TO HIS LONG HOME: from Babylon they came4 and there shall they return. AND THE MOURNERS GO ABOUT THE STREETS: this refers to the exile of Jeconiah.5 You find that when the exile of Zedekiah occurred, the exiles of Jeconiah came out to meet them, clothed in sackcloth beneath but wearing white garments outside, and asked them, ' How is my father? How is my mother? How is my brother? ' They told them, ' They are killed ‘; whereupon they mourned with one hand6 and praised [Nebuchadnezzar] with the other; to fulfil that which was said, Your tires shall be upon your heads, and your shoes upon your feet; ye shall not make lamentation nor weep (Ezek. XXIV, 23).
BEFORE THE SILVER CORD IS SNAPPED ASUNDER: this alludes to the genealogical chain.7 AND THE GOLDEN BOWL IS SHATTERED: these are the words
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(1) The version in Lam. R. is clearer: Can anything whose height is 60 cubits and breadth 6 cubits stand upright? Unless its breadth is a third of its height it cannot stand upright!
(2) This is the reading in Lam. R. and in the Warsaw ed. here. The reading is the Vilna ed.
vbec : (with a prop) is probably a misprint for vbef : (like a reed or cane).
(3) Deriving ABIYYONAH from ab (father).
(4) Abraham was born in that part of the world.
(5) Jer- XXVII, 20. He is identical with Jehoiachin, and his captivity occurred 11 years earlier.
(6) Beating their breasts.
(7) Gaps were caused in family trees by the slaughter.


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of the Torah, as it is said, More to be desired than gold (PS. XIX, 11). AND THE PITCHER IS BROKEN AT THE FOUNTAIN: two teachers comment. One says that it means the pitcher of Baruch was broken upon the fountain of Jeremiah, while the other says that the pitcher of Jeremiah was broken upon the fountain of Baruch1; and that is what is stated, He pronounced all these words unto me with his mouth, and I wrote them with ink in the book (Jer. XXXVI, 18). AND THE WHEEL FALLETH SHATTERED INTO THE PIT: from Babylon they came and to Babylon they returned. ' From Babylon they came,’ as it is stated, Now the Lord said unto Abraham: Get thee out of thy country (Gen. XII, 1); ‘and to Babylon they returned,’ since [Nebuchadnezzar] took the people captive to Babylon.
R. Johanan said: That saith to the deep (zullah): Be dry (Isa. XLIV, 27): ’Zullah’ alludes to Babylon; and why is it called ’Zullah’? Because they who died in the Flood sank (zalelu) there; for it is written, As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the land (Jer. LI, 49). R. Simeon b. Lakish said: It is written, They found a plain in the land of Shinar (Gen. XI, 2). Why is it called ’Shinar’? Because those who died in the Flood were emptied out (she-nin'eru) there. Another explanation of ’Shinar’ is that [the inhabitants] died by suffocation2 without a lamp burning and without [the body] being washed. Another explanation of ’Shinar’ is that [the Israelites] are emptied (shehem menu'arim) there of all the commandments,3 being without terumah and tithes. [Other explanations are:] ’Shinar’ because her princes (sar) die young (ne'arim). ‘Shinar.’ because they
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(1) FOUNTAIN is the teacher, PITCHER the pupil. According to the first view, Baruch was deprived of Jeremiah's teaching; according to the second, Jeremiah had been dependent upon Baruch who acted as his scribe and wrote down his words in a book which was burnt by Jehoiachin.
(2) In Ex. XIV, 27, the verb wayena'er (He overthrew) is rendered in the Aramaic version by ' He suffocated ' and that meaning is read into ’Shinar’.
(3) Viz. such commandments as could only be performed in the holy land and in connection with the Temple.


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raised up a hater (sone’) and enemy (‘ar), and who is he? Nebuchadnezzar.
AND THE DUST RETURNETH TO THE EARTH AS IT WAS: from Babylon they came and to Babylon they returned. AND THE SPIRIT RETURNETH UNTO GOD: this refers to the Holy Spirit. You find that when Jeremiah saw Jerusalem destroyed, the Temple burnt, Israel driven into exile, and the Holy Spirit departed, he began to say over them VANITY OF VANITIES.1


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