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Wilhelm Bacher, Ph.D.

Professor, Jewish Theological Seminary, Budapest, Hungary.

Contributions:
SHIR HA-SHIRIM (CANTICLES) RABBAH – Composed in Palestine. Haggadic midrash on Canticles, quoted by Rashi under the title "Midrash Shir ha-Shirim" (commentary on Cant. iv. 1, viii. 11). It is called also Agadat Ḥazita, from its initial word "Ḥazita" (R. Nathan, in...
SHIR HA-SHIRIM (CANTICLES) ZUṬA – Midrash, or, rather, homiletic commentary, on Canticles; referred to in the various Yalḳuṭim and by the ancient Biblical commentators as "Midrash Shir ha-Shirim," or "Agadat Shir ha-Shirim." Recently the De Rossi Manuscript No....
SHIRAH, PEREḲ (PIRḲE) – Chapter of song and praise to God by heavenly and earthly bodies, and by plants and dumb creatures. It is composed of Scriptural verses, one or two for each creature enumerated; and it is divided, according to subjects, into six...
SHI'UR ḲOMAH – Esoteric work on the dimensions of the body of God and of His several members. It exists apparently only in fragments, the largest, which often has been taken to be the entire work, being included in the "Sefer Raziel." These...
SHUSHAN – Ancient capital of Susiana or Elam, and the winter residence of the kings of Persia; situated between the Choaspes (modern Ab-i Kerkhah) and the Eulæus (the "Ulai" of Dan. viii. 2; modern Shaur), fifteen miles southeast of...
SIFRA – Authorship. Halakic midrash to Leviticus. It is frequently quoted in the Talmud, and the study of it followed that of the Mishnah, as appears from Tanḥuma, quoted in "Or Zarua'," i. 7b. Like Leviticus itself, the midrash is...
SIFRE – A Composite Work. Midrash to Numbers and Deuteronomy (for the title "Sifre debe Rab" see R. Hananeel on Sheb. 37b, Alfasi on Pes. x., and Rashi on Hos. ii. 1; it occurs likewise in Mak. 9b, where, as Berliner says in his edition...
SIFRE ZUṬA – Quoted in the "Sefer ha-Miẓwot." A peculiar midrash to Numbers, of especial interest for the study of the Halakah. Its authenticity is wrongly questioned by Weiss ("Zur Gesch. der Jüdischen Tradition," ii. 238). Medieval authors...
SIGNATURE – Usually a writer inscribes his name at the end of a writing as a certification of authorship or as an indication that he accepts the sponsorship of the writing; but it does not appear that this was the custom of the ancient...
SIHON – Biblical Data: Amoritic king of the east-Jordan country, whose kingdom extended from the Arnon in the south to the Jabbok in the north, and from the Jordan in the west to the desert in the east (Num. xxi. 24; Judges xi. 22)....
SIMA (SAMA) – Babylonian amora of the latter half of the fourth and of the beginning of the fifth century; son of Rab Ashi. He is known through halakic questions which he addressed to his father (Ket. 33b, 69a; Zeb. 19b, 24a; Men. 25a; B. Ḳ....
SIMEON – Biblical Data: Second son of Jacob by Leah, and progenitor of one of the tribes of Israel; born at Padan-aram. In Gen. xxix. 33 the origin of the name is given: "God hath heard that I am hated" (R. V.). Various etymological...
SIMEON, TRIBE OF – Biblical Data: This tribe traces its descent from Simeon, second son of Jacob by Leah. He was the brother of Levi and Dinah, according to Gen. xxxvi. 25, xlix. 5, but elsewhere (ib. xxx. 1-9, xlvi. 8-15) it is stated that he had...
SIMEON – Tanna of the first generation; brother of Azariah and uncle of Eleazar ben Azariah. He is mentioned only once in the Mishnah, in Zeb. i. 2, where a saying of his has been preserved. He is named after his brother Azariah, who was...
SIMEON I. – Son of Hillel and father of Gamaliel I. Nothing is known of him except his name and the fact that he was the successor of Hillel as president of the Sanhedrin (Shab. 15a).W. B. J. Z. L.
SIMEON II. (BEN GAMALIEL I.) – President of the Great Sanhedrin at Jerusalem in the last two decades before the destruction of the Temple. Not merely a scholar, but a man of resolution and courage also, he was one of the leaders in the revolt against the...
SIMEON (BEN GAMALIEL II.) – Wide Knowledge. Tanna of the third generation, and president of the Great Sanhedrin. Simeon was a youth in Bethar when the Bar Kokba war broke out, but when that fortress was taken by the Romans he managed to escape the massacre...
SIMEON B. ABBA – Palestinian amora of the third generation; pupil of Ḥanina b. Ḥama, who esteemed him highly, and of Johanan, who would have been glad to ordain him (Sanh. 14a). Simeon's family came originally from Babylonia; Simeon himself...
SIMEON B. ABSALOM – Amora the period of whose activity is not known. Only two haggadic sentences by him have been preserved. One, on Judges iv. 5, declares that Deborah sat under a palm-tree instead of in her house, in order to escape any possible...
SIMEON B. 'AḲASHYAH – Tanna of the second generation. Only one of his haggadic sentences has been preserved, namely, that explaining Job xii. 12, 20, in which he declares that coarse and uneducated persons lose in intelligence as they grow old, while...
SIMEON B. BOETHUS – The first high priest of the family of Boethus in the Temple of Jerusalem. He was a native of Alexandria. He owed his appointment as high priest to his daughter Mariamne, who captivated Herod by her beauty, the king advancing...
SIMEON B. ELEAZAR – Tanna of the fourth generation; probably a son of R. Eleazar b. Shammua'. He was a pupil of R. Meïr, whose sentences, both halakic and haggadic, he transmitted (Ḥul. 6a; Shab. 134a; 'Er. 29a). The following anecdote, related of...
SIMEON B. ḤALAFTA – One of the teachers of the transition period between the Tannaim and the Amoraim. He was a friend of Ḥiyya, and is mentioned several times as differing with him in regard to haggadic sentences (Lam. R. i. 2; Pesiḳ. xi. [ed....
SIMEON HE-ḤASID – Tanna; period of activity unknown. He is not mentioned in the Mishnah; and only one haggadic sentence of his has been preserved, in a baraita. It refers to Job xxii., and states that the 974 generations which should have been...
SIMEON B. ISAAC B. ABUN – Prominent expounder of the Law and one of the most important liturgical writers of the tenth and eleventh centuries. He was a native of Mayence and a contemporary of R. Gershom Me'or ha-Golah. He received a written communication...