The formation and character of the Jerusalem Talmud

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CONTENTS AND LANGUAGE The Jerusalem Talmud (Talmud Yerushalmi), which is more accurately known as the Palestinian Talmud (henceforth, the PT), since this work was not produced in Jerusalem, is the Mishnah commentary produced in the Palestinian rabbinical academies during the third and fourth centuries ce. However, the PT contains much more than Mishnah commentary: it cites and discusses other tannaitic sources (baraitot and halachic midrashim) and includes legal decisions and discussions which are unrelated to the Mishnah, as well as a substantial amount of non-legal material. The PT is written in a combination of Hebrew and Galilean Aramaic. The criteria determining when each of these languages is used are not fully clear, although Aramaic is often used in non-legal contexts and in technical terminology. The PT also contains a fair number of Greek loan-words, and a smaller number of Latin loan-words. Babylonian Aramaic is not found in reliable texts of the PT, such as Genizah fragments, although vulgate texts of the work (e.g., printed editions) are often contaminated with Babylonian Aramaic vocabulary and morphology.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Cambridge History of Judaism
Subtitle of host publicationVolume IV the Late Roman-Rabbinic Period
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9781139055130
ISBN (Print)0521772486, 9780521772488
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2006

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Cambridge University Press 2006 and Cambridge University Press, 2008.


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