Halakhic Midrashim as Historical Sources


in Rabbinic Texts and the History of Late-Roman Palestine

Published by British Academy

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780197264744
Published online February 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191734663 | DOI:

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy

Halakhic Midrashim as Historical Sources

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This chapter evaluates the usefulness and reliability of the halakhic midrashim as a historical resource. It explains that the halakhic midrashim as commentaries on the biblical books of Exodus through Deuteronomy with a special emphasis on their importance for the halakhah or the religious law. It describes the manuscripts, printed editions, and translations of the halakhic midrashim. It concludes that the halakhic midrashim do not offer information on political history, they offer lot of details regarding daily life in Palestine in the second and third centuries and the way the rabbis understood it.

Keywords: halakhic midrashim; historical resource; biblical commentaries; Exodus; Deuteronomy; halakhah; political history; daily life; Palestine; rabbis

Chapter.  6176 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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