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The Scholarly Woman

The Scholarly Woman

Beruriah

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Beruriah was a respected scholar who was quoted in the Talmud numerous times. Her husband, Rabbi Meir, was an oft-quoted rabbi in the Mishnah; her father, Rabbi Chananiah ben Teradion, was one of the “Ten Martyrs” put to death by the Romans for teaching Torah.

One time, Beruriah observed a student who was studying quietly. She kicked him and declared, “Doesn’t it say, ‘Arranged in all [your limbs] and secure’ (Samuel II 23:5)? If your learning is arranged in all your limbs, it is secure and will not be forgotten’” (Eruvin 53b–54a). We learn from Beruriah that learning aloud will enhance our memory (Maharshah).

In another instance, Beruriah intervened in a debate between Rabbi Tarfon and the sages. Rabbi Yehoshuah praised her comments, saying, “Beruriah has spoken correctly” (Tosefta Kelim, Bava Metzia 1:3).

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