You have no items in your shopping cart.
Close
Search
Filters

In Every Generation

Studies in the Evolution and Formation of the Passover Haggadah


The Passover Haggadah, the quintessential Jewish book, began taking shape in the period of the Mishnah and the Talmud (ca. 100-600 CE). Even by 600, it did not look like it does today. Major portions were wanting, e.g., the story of eminent sages at a seder in Bene Beraq; the typology of the four sons; the midrashic expansion of the story of the exodus; the song Dayyenu. Those compositions (mostly) or borrowings were incorporated into the Haggadah between ca. 600-900 (the Geonic period). Such selections completed the Haggadah, producing the book used at Passover Seders to the present day. This study shows how the section of the Passover Haggdah known as maggid (“recounting”) achieved its comprehensive structure and contents between ca. 600 and 900 CE (the geonic period).
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
Availability: In stock
SKU (ISBN): 978-1-4632-4376-0
  • *
Publication Status: In Print
Publication Date: May 29,2024
Interior Color: Black with Color Inserts
Trim Size: 7 x 10
Page Count: 354
Languages: English
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4376-0
$115.00
Your price: $92.00
Ship to
*
*
Shipping Method
Name
Estimated Delivery
Price
No shipping options

Before you is an examination of significant moments in the evolution and formation of the Passover Haggadah. Traditional oral texts – literary, legal, liturgical – can take form and endure for centuries, continuing into their preservation in writing. Some formulators will independently create unique versions of those foundational texts which then persist in their communities. When, over time, these varied original forms come into contact, they may influence each other. In addition, creative tradents will embellish and augment their material, which would then be preserved anew for their own liturgical context. The Passover Haggadah is one such traditional text, better, a collection of texts, each with its own tradental development and history.

Manuscript fragments of Haggadahs from the Cairo Genizah and other early textual witnesses attest to various phases of those developmental processes. Whether copied in the tenth century or the thirteenth, they present a variety of pristine, modified, augmented and innovated versions of textual components all of which had developed by the ninth century when they were documented in writings of Babylonian Geonim. This book analyzes the preserved elements of that varied textual evidence to “connect the dots,” whether as pieces of a puzzle to be assembled, or as a series of time-lapse snapshots revealing the process of evolutionary development and flowering of different components of this unique and treasured classic.

Before you is an examination of significant moments in the evolution and formation of the Passover Haggadah. Traditional oral texts – literary, legal, liturgical – can take form and endure for centuries, continuing into their preservation in writing. Some formulators will independently create unique versions of those foundational texts which then persist in their communities. When, over time, these varied original forms come into contact, they may influence each other. In addition, creative tradents will embellish and augment their material, which would then be preserved anew for their own liturgical context. The Passover Haggadah is one such traditional text, better, a collection of texts, each with its own tradental development and history.

Manuscript fragments of Haggadahs from the Cairo Genizah and other early textual witnesses attest to various phases of those developmental processes. Whether copied in the tenth century or the thirteenth, they present a variety of pristine, modified, augmented and innovated versions of textual components all of which had developed by the ninth century when they were documented in writings of Babylonian Geonim. This book analyzes the preserved elements of that varied textual evidence to “connect the dots,” whether as pieces of a puzzle to be assembled, or as a series of time-lapse snapshots revealing the process of evolutionary development and flowering of different components of this unique and treasured classic.

Write your own review
  • Only registered users can write reviews
*
*
Bad
Excellent
*
*
*
*
ContributorBiography

Jay Rovner

Jay Rovner is the Manuscript Bibliographer Emeritus of The Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary, New York, where he also taught Talmud. He has published a book on income tithing; and studies of talmudic sugyas, aggadic narratives, and liturgical texts from the Cairo Genizah.

Table of Contents (v)

List of Plates (xi)

Preface (xiii)

Chapter 1. The Development of Maggid in the Mishnah and the Talmud (1)

Part 1: Introduction (1)

Introduction to the beginnings of maggid in the Mishnah and the Talmud (4)

Part 2: Maggid in the Mishnah (6)

The text of mPesaḥim 10 (6)

Germ of Maggid in the Mishnah: Gamaliel’s Mediation between the Temple experience and the Mishnah’s program and its historicity (10)

Contemporary Passover material in the Tosefta: A Gamaliel anecdote and children at the Seder (12)

The Mishnah’s program ca. 200: a new contextualization of Gamaliel (13)

The Mishnah’s program ca. 200: matters of Scripture, structure, and evolution (19)

Maggid in the Mishnah: Passover eve according to second century Tannaim: further linguistic aspects and considerations of historicity (26)

The complex signification of omer in “rabbi Tarfon omer… rabbi Akiva omer …” in the context of ḥotem bi-geʼulah (30)

The diachronic foundation upon which the Mishnah’s Seder program is built (31)

Part 3: Maggid in the Talmud (37)

Indications in the Yerushalmi (37)

Indications in the Bavli, 1: The Seder liturgy has a name (39)

Indications in the Bavli, 2: Matḥil bi-genut and other Babylonian additions to the Seder (40)

Indications in the Bavli, 3: Tale of Naḥman and Daru (43)

Maggid in the Talmud: Manuscript evidence of the Naḥman-Daru manumission exchange (43)

Indications in the Bavli: Conclusions (54)

Chapter 2. The Mi-teḥillah Complex and ʻavadim Hayinu: Two Introductions to the Miqra Bikkurim Midrash (57)

Introduction. Anticipating the formation of maggid in the geonic Haggadah: Since ʻavadim hayinu comes first, why take up the mi-teḥillah complex first? (57)

Part 1: The formation of the mi-teḥillah complex in Ereṣ Israel and its various introductory formulae (61)

An unusual Ereṣ Israel introduction to the miqra bikkurim (61)

Ereṣ Israel introductions to the miqra bikkurim that begin with Joshua 24 (66)

Part 2a. The Babylonian introductions to the miqra bikkurim (69)

The origin and development of the Babylonian ʻavadim hayinu formulae (70)

Part 2b. The Babylonian ʻavadim hayinu complex: The disposition of ʻavadim hayinu in the Babylonian Haggadah formularies (72)

Further developments in the ʻavadim hayinu complex (75)

Conclusions (75)

Appendix 1. Chronological implications of the repurposing of ʻavadim hayinu for the Bavli’s Naḥman-Daru manumission parable; the theme of gifts of wealth (76)

Appendix 2. A textual fossil preserved in an alternative version of a Babylonian Haggadah (78)

Chapter 3. Evolution and Nature of the Miqra Bikkurim Midrash (83)

Introduction (83)

Part 1. The Ereṣ Israel midrash traditions (84)

a. Preliminary remarks on the Ereṣ Israel miqra bikkurim midrash (84)

b. The Ereṣ Israel miqra bikkurim midrash, version one (after Goldschmidt 1969, pp. 79–80= Katz Center for Judaic Studies, University of Pennsylvania, MS Halper 211, fol. 6r–7r) (85)

The universal gloss 1.2 on verse 8 (86)

Gloss 1.1 on verse 5 (91)

Gloss 1.3 (92)

On the possibility of a midrash-free Ereṣ Israel miqra bikkurim (93)

c. The Ereṣ Israel miqra bikkurim midrash, version two (94)

The Ereṣ Israel miqra bikkurim midrash, version two: the expositions (96)

Significance of missing verses and added midrashic matter (98)

Added matter and its bearing on the development of the Ereṣ Israel miqra bikkurim version two midrash (100)

The kamah ḥaviv formula and problems with its execution in the first gloss (101)

Themes and significance of the Ereṣ Israel miqra bikkurim midrash version two (104)

Part 2. The Early Babylonian Haggadah midrash traditions: Forerunners of the full Babylonian miqra bikkurim midrash (105)

a. Proto-Babylonian version one: T-S H2.142 (107)

b. Proto-Babylonian version two: ENA 567.1–5 (116)

Part 3. Development of the full Babylonian haggadah midrash (118)

a. Development of the Babylonian version, explanations: T-S H2.142, the Sifre and ENA 567 (121)

b. Development of the Babylonian version in expansions and amplifications: ENA 567 and Pitron Torah (124)

c. Development of the full Babylonian version (135)

Conclusions to chapter 3 (150)

Appendix to chapter 3, part 2. Methodological considerations in evaluating conflicting evidence in determining whether a liturgy is of Babylonian or Ereṣ Israel provenance: the case of T-S H2.142 (153)

Crux of the problem: Ereṣ Israel forms of the mealtime blessings (155)

Analysis: “schizophrenic” formularies (155)

Conclusion: T-S H2.142 is a late copy of a primitive Babylonian liturgy (157)

Chapter 4. The ʻavadim hayinu complex, part 1: The All-Night Seder in Bene Beraq: A Literary and Cultural History (159)

Introduction (159)

The Nature of this Tale (164)

The Narrative in Context: the Redactional History of a Section in the Passover Haggadah (168)

Table 1. Enhanced versions of ʻavadim hayinu in the Babylonian Haggadah (169)

Microcosmic Examination: The Nature and Evolution of the Bene Beraq Seder Narrative (174)

The Bene Beraq Seder Narrative as a Generic Maʻaśeh (176)

Table 2. Precedence of Akiva over Eleazar ben Azariah in narratives (179)

The Evolution of the Bene Beraq Seder Narrative, Stage 1: An Adaptation of tPisḥa 10.12 (185)

The Evolution of the Bene Beraq Seder Narrative, Stage 1 continued: Sequence of Sages (188)

Table 3. Three possible ways to open an aggadic narrative (190)

The Evolution of the Bene Beraq Seder Narrative, Stage 2: Eliezer and Tarfon (195)

Macrocosmic Issues Redux: The Evolution of the Bene Beraq Seder Narrative, Stage 2 continued: Linguistic and Liturgical Matters (197)

Conclusion: Overall development and cohesion (198)

Appendix on the Development and Formation of the Siddur Saadia and Sijilmassa-A Versions of the ʻAvadim Hayinu Complex (200)

Appendix to note 6. On Sagit Mor’s examination of the two Seder narratives in Zion 68, pp. 297–311 (201)

Appendix to note 11. The Function of mBerakhot 1.5 as a continuation of the Bene Beraq story (204)

Table 4. Evolution of the Bene Beraq Text in the Context of Avadim Hayinu and the Babylonian Haggadah Traditions (207)

Chapter 5. The ʻavadim hayinu complex, part 2: The All-Night Seder in Bene Beraq and its Literary Context: Language of Communication and Rhetorical Strategy (213)

Haśiaḥ and Sapper, Meaning and Eclipse (214)

The two verbs are used in similar ways in classical rabbinic documents (215)

Haśiaḥ and Sapper in the Bene Beraq story, 1. Why Haśiaḥ and not Sapper is the original verb (217)

1. Background context (220)

2. Liturgical language and associations (222)

3. Haggadah context (225)

Final conclusion: Putting the pieces together (243)

The State of the Haggadah and its development in light of the terms and texts examined above (248)

Conclusion: Meśiḥin/mesapperin + be – About what did they discuss; how did they praise? (248)

All-Night Easter Vigils, a Comparison (249)

Appendix: Primary sources containing the Deliverance narrative (251)

1. Mekhilta of Rabbi Ishmael, Bo, Pisḥa 17 (p. 59) (251)

2. bBerakhot 12b-13a (252)

Chapter 6. Dayyenu: A Debt of Gratitude in Two Babylonian Liturgical Folk Songs (255)

Introduction (255)

Previous Understandings of When and Where Dayyenu was Composed (260)

A. Dayyenu, Part 1: The Long Form (264)

B. Dayyenu, Part 2: The Short Form of Dayyenu (279)

C. Introductory Rubrics: their Evolution and Meaning (287)

D. Indication that the Introductory Rubrics are Post-Talmudic (292)

E. Conclusions (297)

Appendix to note 63. Dayyenu’s distinctive liturgical sensibility with respect to building the Temple (298)

Conclusions (301)

Plates (305)

Geonic Haggadah Bibliography (315)

Classical texts (315)

Research (318)

Indices (329)

Index of Names (Ancient Rabbis) (329)

Index of Names (Modern Scholars) (330)

Index of Subjects and Terms (331)

Index of Biblical, Apocryphal and Rabbinic Sources (333)

Index of Manuscripts (339)

Customers who bought this item also bought
Picture of The Tale of Peter Rabbit in Classical Syriac

The Tale of Peter Rabbit in Classical Syriac

The Tale of Peter Rabbit in Classical Syriac is a retelling of Beatrix Potter’s classic tale for students of Classical Syriac as well as heritage readership. The vocabulary and expressions woven by George Kiraz draw not only on the language of the Peshitta Bible, but also on the language used in other texts, especially tales and colophons. Partially vocalized, the text aims to be readable to students of the language after completing a semester at the university level.
$28.00
Picture of Literary Snippets (Reader)

Literary Snippets (Reader)

This companion volume to Literary Snippets: Colophons Across Space and Time (Gorgias Press, 2023) gives examples of colophons (and their translations) from the Ancient Near East up to the pre-modern world, in Akkadian, Hebrew, Arabic, Syriac, and Persian.
$114.95 $91.96
Picture of Investigating the Text-Hierarchical Structures and Composition of Numbers

Investigating the Text-Hierarchical Structures and Composition of Numbers

The structure of the Book of Numbers and its division into textual units has long been of interest to scholars, and various theories have been put forward based on criteria such as time, location or theme. The present volume offers a syntactic-hierarchical analysis of the Book of Numbers, giving priority to syntax and secondary priority to participants and their roles.
$114.95 $91.96
Picture of Literary Snippets

Literary Snippets

The colophon, the ultimate or “crowing touch” paragraphs of a manuscript or a book, provides readers with a the historical context in which the scribe produced the manuscript (or the publisher, a book). At its most fundamental level, the colophon gives us the “metadata” of the manuscript: who was the scribe? When and where was the manuscript produced? For whom was it produced and who paid for it? But colophons are far more rich. They are literary works in their own right, having a style and rhetoric independent of the main literary text of the manuscript. Some are assertive, providing contextual data about the scribe/publisher and manuscript/book; others are expressive, demonstrating the scribe’s feelings and wishes. Some are directive, asking the reader for an action; others declarative, providing all sorts of statements about the scribe/publisher or even the reader. The latter sometimes provide historical facts otherwise lost to histories: wars, earthquakes, religious events, legal agreements, etc. This edited volume brings together scholars from various disciplines to study colophons in various languages and traditions across space and time.
$120.00 $96.00