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Wilhelm Bacher, Ph.D.

Professor, Jewish Theological Seminary, Budapest, Hungary.

Contributions:
SHA'AṬNEZ – Fabric consisting of a mixture of wool and linen, the wearing of which is forbidden by the Mosaic law (Lev. xix. 19; Deut. xxii. 11). The Septuagint rendering is κίβδηλον (something false, adulterated, or drossy). In the Coptic...
SHABBAT – Treatise in the Mishnah, Tosefta, and both Talmuds; devoted chiefly to rules and regulations for the Sabbath. The Scriptural passages that treat of the Sabbath and of the laws for its observance, thus forming the exegetical...
SHABBETHAI B. SOLOMON – Rabbi and scholar; lived at Rome in the second half of the thirteenth century. In the controversy regarding the study of philosophy in general, and of Maimonides' "Moreh Nebukim" in particular, which arose between Hillel b....
SHALLUM – Biblical Data: 1. King of Israel who dethroned Zechariah, the last of Jehu's dynasty, and succeeded him. He was in turn dethroned by Menahem (II Kings xv. 10-16).2. Son of Josiah, King of Judah (Jer. xxii. 11). Probably the term...
SHAMḤAZAI – Name of a fallen angel. According to Targ. pseudo-Jonathan on Gen. vi. 4, "nefilim" (A. V. "giants") denotes the two angels Shamḥazai and his companion Uzzael orAzael, who fell from heaven and dwelt on earth "in those days,"...
SHAMIR – Term designating a hard stone in the Targums, but in the Bible thrice (Jer. xvii. 1; Ezek. iii. 9; Zech. vii. 12) connoting Adamant, a substance harder than any stone and hence used as a stylus (Löw, "Graphische Requisiten." i....
SHAMMAI – Scholar of the first century B.C. He was the most eminent contemporary and the halakic opponent of Hillel, and is almost invariably mentioned along with him. After Menahem the Essene had resigned the office of vice-president...
SHEBI'IT – Contents. Treatise of the Mishnah, Tosefta, and Palestinian Talmud. It belongs to the order Zera'im, in which it stands fifth, and is divided into ten chapters, containing eighty-nine paragraphs in all. According to the Law in...
SHEBU'OT – Treatise in the Mishnah, Tosefta, and both Talmuds, dealing chiefly with the various forms of the oath. In most of the editions it is the sixth treatise of the order Neziḳin, and is divided into eight chapters, containing...
SHE'ELOT U-TESHUBOT – The Hebrew designation for the "responsa prudentium," connoting the written decisions and rulings given by eminent rabbis, teachers, or heads of academies to questions addressed to them in writing. These responsa constitute a...
SHEḤIṬAH – Origin Traditional. The ritual slaughtering of animals. While the practise that prevailed among the nations of antiquity other than the Hebrews, of cutting off a limb from a living animal and eating it, is condemned in several...
SHEḲALIM – Treatise of the Mishnah, the Tosefta, and the Jerusalem Talmud, dealing with the half-shekel tax which was imposed for defraying the expenses of the Temple service (comp. Ex. xxx. 12 et seq.; Neh. x. 33); also with the other...
SHELA – Babylonian teacher of the latter part of the tannaitic and the beginning of the amoraic period; head of the school ("sidra") at Nehardea (Yoma 20a; Letter of Sherira Gaon, in Neubauer, "M. J. C." i. 28). When Abba Arika (Rab)...
SHELAH – Youngest son of Judah by the daughter of the Canaanite Shuah; born in Chezib in the shephelah of Judah. His extreme youth at the time of the death of his brother Onan was the ostensible excuse alleged by his father for the...
SHEM – Biblical Data: The eldest of Noah's sons, according to the position and sequence of the names wherever all three are mentioned together; e.g., "and Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth" (Gen. v. 32). In the table of nations in Gen....
SHEM HA-MEFORASH – Meaning of Term. Ancient tannaitic name of the Tetragrammaton. The exact meaning of the term is somewhat obscure; but since the Tetragrammaton is called also "Shem ha-Meyuḥad" ( ), it may be assumed that "meyuḥad" is used...
SHEMAIAH B. SIMEON ẒEBI – Scholar of the seventeenth century, of whose life no other details are known than that he was the author of "Maẓref la-Ḥokmah" (Amsterdam, 1765), a list of the 613 commandments, each being described in eight words beginning with...
SHEMAIAH OF SOISSONS – Scholar of the twelfth century; a pupil of Rashi. He was the author of the following works: (1) "Sodot" or "Midrash," notes on the construction of the Tabernacle as described in Ex. xxv.-xxvi. It was edited on the basis of the...
SHEMARIAH BEN ELHANAN – Head of the yeshibah of Cairo, Egypt, about the end of the tenth century. Abraham b. David ("Sefer ha-Ḳabbalah," in Neubauer, "M. J. C." i. 68) relates that Ibn Rumaḥis (or Ibn Demahin), an Arab admiral, had captured four...
SHEMARIAH B. MORDECAI – German tosafist of the first half of the twelfth century; pupil of the tosafist Isaac b. Asher. He was considered an especially eminent authority on religious rites ("ba'al ma'asim"), and seems to have written "posḳim"...
SHERIRA B. ḤANINA – Gaon of Pumbedita; born about 900; died about 1000 (Abraham ibn Daud, "Sefer ha-Ḳabbalah," in Neubauer, "M. J. C." i. 66-67). He was the descendant, both on his father's and his mother's side, of prominent families, several...
SHESHET – Relations to Rab. Babylonian amora of the third generation; colleague of R. Naḥman bar Jacob, with whom he had frequent arguments concerning questions of religious law. His teacher's name is not definitely known; but Sheshet was...
SHILA OF KEFAR TAMARTA – Palestinian amora of the third century. In Palestinian sources he is called only by his personal name, but in the Babylonian Talmud the name of his home in Judea is always added, in order to distinguish him from an older...
SHIMEI – 1. Biblical Data: Benjamite of Bahurim, son of Gera, "a man of the family of the house of Saul" (II Sam. xvi. 5-14, xix. 16-23; I Kings ii. 8-9, 36-46). He is mentioned as one of David's tormentors during his flight before...
SHINNUY HA-SHEM – The custom of changing a person's name, as a tribute to his achievements, or as a sign that his condition will be improved, or particularly as an aid to his recovery from illness. Abram's name was changed to "Abraham" = "the...