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Monday, February 26, 2018

Halachic Times (Zmanim)
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Jewish History

Rashi, the most basic commentary on the Torah, was printed for the first time, in Reggio di Calabria, Italy. In this print, the commentary on the Five Books of Moses, authored in the 11th century by Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki, was not on the same page as the text of the Scriptures, as it is normally printed today.

This was the first time that the rounded Hebrew font was used, the font which has since become known as "Rashi Letters."

Links:
Rashi
Did Rashi Lack a Scientific Method?

Rabbi Yosef Rosen, known as the Rogatchover Gaon (Prodigy/Genius), passed away in Vienna on Thursday, March 5, 1936.

Rabbi Rosen, born in 1858, and raised in the Belarusian city of Rogatchov, served for decades as a rabbi in the Latvian city of Dvinsk (Daugavpils). He was an unparalleled genius, whose in depth understanding of all Talmudic literature left the greatest of scholars awestruck. He habitually demonstrated that many of the famous debates between the Talmudic sages have a singular thread and theme.

Rabbi Rosen authored tens of thousands of responsa on the Talmud and Jewish law. Many of them have been compiled in the set of volumes Tzafnat Paneach.

Laws and Customs

In Talmudic times, a special stipulation allowed for Jews living in small villages or hamlets to hear the reading of the Megillah (Book of Esther) on the Monday or Thursday before Purim -- the days when villagers would come to town because the courts were in session. Depending on the year's configuration, this meant that the Megillah could be read as early as the 11th of Adar or as late as the 15th -- but no earlier or later than these dates (Talmud, beginning of Tractate Megillah).

Link: The Book of Esther with commentary

Daily Thought

All our philosophy is meant only to achieve some sort of grasp of what a small child means when he prays to G‑d.

But we can't.

As soon as we grasp, it is gone.

Shabbat Toldot 5752.