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The Pillar of Volozhin: Rabbi Naftali Zvi Yehuda Berlin and by Gil S. Perl

By Gil S. Perl

The paintings of Rabbi Naftali Zvi Yehuda Berlin, the Neziv, ranks among the main usually learn rabbinic literature of the 19th century. His breadth of studying, unabashed creativity, and penchant for strolling opposed to the flow of the rabbinic commentarial institution has made his commentaries a favourite among rabbinic students and students of rabbinics alike. but, to this point, there was no complete and systematic try to position his highbrow oeuvre into its old context—until now.

In the Pillar of Volozhin, Gil Perl lines the impacts which helped mildew and form the Neziv's considering whereas additionally starting new doorways into the realm of early 19th century Lithuanian Torah scholarship, a space heretofore nearly thoroughly untouched by way of educational learn.

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Extra resources for The Pillar of Volozhin: Rabbi Naftali Zvi Yehuda Berlin and the World of Nineteenth-Century Lithuanian Torah Scholarship

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In fact, the study of midrashic texts, and the composition of commentaries thereon, was a salient feature of the intellectual milieu of early nineteenth-century Lithuanian Torah scholarship. It is against this backdrop, and in light of these influences, that ‘Emek ha-Neẓiv must be viewed. Midrash Commentary Prior to the Ga’on While the volumes of halakhic and homiletic exegesis traditionally attributed to tanaitic and amoraic authors and referred to generally as midrash served as important sources for medieval rabbinic Bible commentators, Talmud commentators and halakhists, little intellectual energy was devoted by medieval authors to systematic studies of midrashic works in and of themselves.

However, the printed text also contains sufficient evidence to convince the reader that the commentary on Sifre referred to in the introduction to Ha‘amek She’elah might not be identical to the one found in the printed text of ‘Emek ha-Neẓiv. 19 While it is possible that an author may refer to a work that has not yet been published,20 the quantity of citations to Ha‘amek She’elah and the precise manner with which he refers to the location of the passage in Ha‘amek She’elah suggest that these references found in ‘Emek ha-Neẓiv were added after the 1861 publication of Ha‘amek She’elah.

EH Ve-’Etḥanan (III: 43). HrD Num. 6: 19. Avraham Yiẓḥak Kook, “Rosh Yeshivat Eẓ Ḥayyim,” Kenesset Yisrael, ed. J Finn (Warsaw, 1888), 138-147. Also in Ma’amarei HaRe’iyah (Jerusalem, 1984), 123-126. 48 There is no commentary on piska’ot 27-54, but the text resumes with brief comments on piska’ 5449 and then ends completely. In the manuscript, piska’ 27 ends at the bottom of a page, which raises the possibility that further commentary followed on subsequent pages which are now lost. 51 Conclusions The conclusion one must draw from the above investigation of the text of ‘Emek ha-Neẓiv is that a historical analysis of the content found in the printed text must be made with caution.

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