[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: orion Second-Temple holidays: 15 of Av

Thank you Steve Oren for your letter 0n 21:47 02/01/99 PST. You wrote:
>In the first place, Judges 21:19 does not advance Rabbi Brody's argument
since the text gives no date for this festival.  My own guess, (on other
grounds which are not relevant here), would be that it is probably Succot
but there are certainly no textual grounds to connect this to Av. 15.  B.
Taanit 30b is of course late (even compared to Josephus who is 1st century
CE and who, in contrast to the authorities cited in that Gemara, actually
saw the Temple system in operation)and consists of a number of Amoraim (3td
century CE on) who are guessing (Ele tet-vav b'Av, mai he?)on why the
Mishnah should mention this date.  The laundry list of events from the
Exodus to 135 CE given by different authorities would support this
assumption.  The circumstance that these authorities are in Iraq, far from
the scene of the Mishnah, does not add weight to their guesses.
                                                               Steve Oren
                                                                Chicago, IL

Please allow me to clarify several points:
First of all- I'm not a Rabbi {[:-] }}}
Secondly, what you called a "laundry list" of events [shopping list?]
appears in the Talmud Yerushalmi [end of Ta'anit]
as well as in the Bavli- which brings it closer in time and space.
The opening "mai he?" is of course a familiar one, and rather than
indicating a guessing game,  comes to preceed a number of answers that are
based on a combination of tradition [the Oral Law] tempered with logic.  
Note that the search for additional sources for the joy of 15 of Av appears
after an earlier Mishnah [Ta'anit 4:5] has already stated that it is a day
of "Korban Atzim" [this is of course closer still than the Amoraic sources].
And finally- why do you think that the "Hag Hashem" in Shilo [Judges 21:19]
is Succot?  It would seem rather depressing for the girls to have to dance
in the empty vineyards with their browning leave in the middle of Tishrei,
instead of the height of the grape harvest in the middle of Av!

Menachem Brody

>> How can I sit quietly when such claims are made concerning the 15th of Av?
>> Let's start with Judges 21:19:
>> "and they said:  here is a Festival of G-d in Shiloh, from year to year..."
>> The Talmud Bavli [Ta'anit 30b] lists six separate reasons for rejoicing on
>> this day, the first of which [chronologically]
>> is:  "the day that the dying ceased in the wilderness",  while a recurrent
>> theme is the reunification of the People of Israel:
>> -the day that the tribes were permitted to inter-marry [nullification of
>> the prohibition from the days of the daughters of Zelophechad in the
>> generation of Joshua]
>> -[and similarly, and this is the mention in Judges] the day that it was
>> permitted to inter-marry with the tribe of Benjamin
>> [after the near extermination of the tribe as a consequence of the
>> "pilegesh bGivah"
>> -the day that Hoshea ben Aleh removed the roadblocks that prohibited
>> Pilgrimige to the Temple in Jerusalem [in the last generation before the
>> Assyrian conquest of the North]
>> Reunification and reconciliation is a very important positive theme which
>> returns generation after generation, and does not conflict with the wood
>> offering which is brought on the same day.
>> Menachem Brody
>> Machon Helkat Hasadeh
>> Elon Moreh