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RABA (properly, R. Aba) B. 'ULLA:

Babylonian amora of the third generation. The exact time at which he lived is uncertain, although he was a friend of 'Ulla, the pupil of R. Johanan (Yeb. 77a; Ḥag. 25b). His comments are mentioned before those of Raba b. Joseph b. Ḥama ('Er. 21b; see the variants in the edition of Rabbinowitz) and R. Papa (Ḥul. 91a). Raba was also a haggadist, and some of his maxims have been preserved (Shab. 31b, 62b), one of which is as follows: "When the Bible says, 'Be not over much wicked' [Eccl. vii. 17], it does not imply that one may sin a little; but it is rather an exhortation to him who has once committed evil not to repeat his iniquity, but to repent" (Shab. 31b, according to the correct reading in Yalḳ., Eccl.; see the variants in Rabbinowitz's "Variæ Lectiones" ad loc.).

This Raba b. 'Ulla must not be confounded with the later Rabbah b.'Ulla, who was a pupil of Bibe b. Abaye ('Er. 8a), although confusion frequently occurs in the writing of their names.

Bibliography:
  • Heilprin, Seder ha-Dorot, ii. 337, Warsaw, 1882;
  • Bacher, Ag. Bab. Amor. pp. 139-140.
W. B. J. Z. L.
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