Copyright
Isidore Singer.

The Jewish encyclopedia : a descriptive record of the history, religion, literature, and customs of the Jewish people from the earliest times to the present day (Volume 8) online

. (page 108 of 169)
Online LibraryIsidore SingerThe Jewish encyclopedia : a descriptive record of the history, religion, literature, and customs of the Jewish people from the earliest times to the present day (Volume 8) → online text (page 108 of 169)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


subsequently enabled him to Ijccome the benefactor
of his coreligionists and to aid the Austrian im-
perial house, especially during the Turkish wars.



is unknown,
the first time
with the communal director Isaac Rofe (Lekarz),
subsequently his father-in-law. His first wife,
Eva, who died before 1580, built with him the
Jewish town-hall at Prague, which is still stand-
ing, as well as the neighboring Hohe Synagoge,
where the Jewisli court sat. With his second wife,
Frummct, he built (1590-92) the Meisel synagogue,
which was much adnured by the Jews of the time,
being, next to the Altneusynagoge, the metropolitan
synagogue of the city; it still bears his name.

The costly gold-
en and silver
vessels with
which he and his
wife furnished
this building
either were lost
during the law-
suit over his
estate or wen;
burned during
the conflagra-
tions in the ghet-
to in 1689 (June
21) and 1754
(May 16). The
only gifts dedi-
cated by Meisel
and his wife to
this synagogue
that have been
preserved are a
curtain (" paro-
ket ") embroid-
ered with hun-
dreds of pearls,
a similarly
adorned wrap-
per for the scroll
uf the Law, and
a magnificent
bronze orna-
ment for the al-
memar. Jacob
Segre, rabbi of
Casalc - Monfer-
rato, celebrated
the dedication of
the synagogue
in a poem which
is still extant,
and his contem-
porary David
Gans, the chron-
icler of Prague,
has described in his "Zemah Dawid " the enthusi-
asm with which the Jewish populaticm received the
gift.

Meisel enlarged the old Jewish cemetery of
Prague by purchasing adjoining uncultivated land,
on which he erected a house for washing the dead,
a mikweh, a bet hamidrash, a Klaus, and a hospi-
tal (still in existence). He spent much money also
in ransoming Jewish prisoners; paved the ghetto of



443



THE JEWISH ENCYCLOPEDIA



Meisel



Prague, -wliicli had been much cidarged at that time :
ofteu provided clothing, of a uniform pattern, for
all the poor of his community ; presented large
dowries every year at Hanukkah to two poor brides

cliosen by lot; lent large sums with-

His Bene- out interest to needy merchants; and

factions, provided for the widows and orphans

of the commuuitj'. He presented
costly synagogal vessels and adornments to other
conununities, including those of Cracow, Posen,
and Jerusalem. He presented and loaned altogether
the sum of 20,000 thalers to the community of Posen
when it was burned out June 11, 1590; gave gener-
ously to Christian philanthropies, contributing a
considerable amount toward the completion of the
Church of the Savior; and repeatedly lent large
sums to the empress as well as to the emperor, being
rewarded with considerable privileges, many of
which affected the Meisel synagogue. This syna-
gogue had a standard with an escutcheon; it might
not be entered by any officer of the law ; it was
exempt from taxation for all time. Although
Meisel had no children, the emperor granted him
the right to dispose of his estate; but after his
death the heirs were involved in difficulties as a re-
sult of tills privilege. He had the right also to
mint shekels for ritual purposes (" pid)'on ha-ben "
and "mahazit ha-shekel"), and one of these coins,
dated 1584, is still in existence.

Meisel's last will and testament, which he drew
up in the presence of Chief Rabbi Low (Judah
Low 15. Bezaleei,), the communal director Joachim
Brandeis, and Mei'r Epstein, leaving liis estate to his
two nephews, Samuel the Elder and Samuel the
Younger, is still extant in manuscript. He was
interred with the highest honors. Immediately after
his burial the Bohemian treasury, at the instance of
the emperor, confiscated his estate, consisting of
516,250 gulden in money together with many houses.
Whatever was found was carried off; one of the
chief heirs was tortured into revealing the hiding-
place of what had been concealed, which also was
claimed. Meisel's wealth and philanthropy have
become proverbial among the Jews, and many anec-
dotes are connected with his name.

Bibliography: Lieben, Gal 'Ed; Foges, AltcrtUmer der
Prager Joifefstadt; Hock-Kauf mann, Xiie FamiUen Pro i/.s,
Presburg, 1893; A. Kiscli, Das Textameut Mardnchai
Mcyseln; idem, Datf Meiselbanner in Piag, Prague, 1901.
D. A. Ki.

Moses b. Mordecai Meisel : Russian scholar
and communal worker; born in Wilna about 1760;
died in Hebron, Palestine, after 1838. He was
shaminash of the community in his native town and
was in his younger days one of the followers of
Elijah Gaon. Later he joined the Hasidim, but did
not participate in the bitter controversies concerning
then^ which disturbed the Polish Jewry in those
times. He was a great admirer of ]\Ioses Mendels-
sohn and approved Solomon Dubno's bi'ur of Gene-
sis (1783). There is also an approbation by Meisel
of Samuel Gershoni's "Debar Shemuel" (Byelo-
stok, 1814). He left Wilna for Palestine in 1813
and settled in Hebron. Dr. Lowe, who met him
there in the summer of 1838, describes him as an old
man well acquainted with German literature.

Meisel was the author of " Shirat Mosheli "



(Shklov, 1788), a poem on the 613 precepts, each line
beginning with a letter from the Ten Command-
ments. His son Aryeh Lob (d. 1835) was a leader
among the Hasidim of Wilna.

BiBi.iocjRAPHY : Fuenn, Kin/ah iN'c'emaJiah, pp. 246-247, 288,
Wilna, 1860; M. A. Ginzburg. Dehir.pp. 47-48, Warsaw, 1883.

H. 11. P. Wl.

Samuel Meisel (the elder): Nephew of Mordecai
Marcus b. Samuel; born in 1-585; died in 1630. He
was wealthy and prominent in affairs. In 1616 he
received an imperial privilege. The printing-press
of Abraham Heide (Lemberger) was situated in his
house. After Mordecai Meisel's death the settle-
ment of his estate involved his family in a tedicms
suit with the government, and from the records of
this suit is derived the information regarding the
members of this family. One of the houses belong-
ing to the estate was awarded, in 1610, to a nephew,
Jacob, and his wife, Johanka ; and three years later.
King Matthias, successor of Rudolf II., gave the
remaining real estate to another nephew, Samuel
Meisel (the younger; d. 1625), son of Simon. The
Meisel synagogue and other property were awarded
to the Jewish community. As the state had con-
fiscated all the money (more than 500,000 gulden)
and nio.st of the real estate, the family sued the
community for the income from the synagogue, the
baths, institutional buildings, etc., amounting to 800
florins a year. The rabbinate thereupon excommu-
nicated the entirely impoverished family (r. 1670),
and this led to indescribable persecutions and .scan-
dals. Decent burial Avas refused to Marek, son of
the younger Samuel Meisel, in 1674, and the funeral
cortege was insulted. His daughter was attacked
in her house by the mob, and the family had to pay
large sums in order to secure honorable burial for
the heir Joachim Meisel. It did not appear until
the final verdict rendered in this suit by the magis-
trate of Prague Sept. 13, 1684, that through the
machinations of the notorious apostate Philipp Lang,
chamberlain to the emperor until 1608, the record of
Meisel's privileges had been secretly stricken from
the official register in 1601, on the ground of their
having been obtained by fraud, and that the sums
subsequently paid to the widow and to the heirs,
and the two houses given them, were alleged to
have been merely gifts. The heirs, naturally, were
not satisfied with this decision ; but the great fire in
the ghetto of Prague, in 1689, which destroyed the
Meisel synagogue and the other 'buildings of the
estate, terminated the controversy. The family
flourished at Prague down to modern times; and
branches of it are found at Warsaw, Budapest,
Breslau, and Berlin.

Bibliography: A. Kisch, Dan Testament Mardnchai
MeyKela: Lieben, Gal 'Ed; Benedikt Foges, AltcrtUmer
der Prayer Jimefstadt.

D. A. Ki.

Wolf Alois Meisel: Hungarian rabbi; born
at Roth-Janowitz July 16, 1815; died at Budapest
Nov. 30, 1867. Owing to his father's conversion to
Christianity, the family relations were so inharmo-
nious that he reached the age of seventeen before
he was able to begin definite preparation for the
future. In 1832 he went to Hamburg, where he ap-
plied himself to the study of the Talmud and grad-



Meisel
Mekilta



THE JEWISH ENCYCLOPEDIA



444



uated from the gymnasium. He entered the Uni-
versity of Bresliiu in 1838, where he continued his
study of the Tahnud and attended lectures on rliet-
oric. In 1848 he was called to the rabbinate of
Stettin, and on jVIay 11, 1859, to that of Budapest.
Here he was in constant coutlict with his congrega-
tion owing to the state of transition, both in religion
and in politics, through which the Hungarian Jews
passed during his administration. His "Ilomilien
iiber die Sprilche der V^ater" (Stettin, 1851; Hun-
garian transl. by Bauer Markfi Lorincz, Budapest,
1862) are models of Jewish pulpit-literature. His
"Prinz unci Derwisch," poems (Stettin, 1847; 2d
ed., Budapest, 1860), and "'Der Prlifstein," poems
(published posthumously by the Meisel-Wohltha-
tigkeitsverein, Budapest, 1878), are translations. He
died suddenly while preaching a sermon, which
Simon Baclicr and his son Wilhelm Bacher pub-
lished in German and Hebrew under the title "' Die
Brunnen Isaak's" {ib. 1867).

BiBLiOCiRAPHV : Kiiyserlinsr, )V. A. Mcisfl; riti LehciiK- uml
Zeilhiki, Leipsio, 18U1 ; Venetiaiiei, A Zsidosdn Szcrvaeic,
pp. 49() ct .-••(■'/.; Biicliler, A ZsUlok inrtenete, pp. 479 cl scq.;
Pallas Lex.; Hoclitnuth, Leopold LiOw, pp. ~0S et acq., Leip-
sio, 1871.
8. L. V.

MEISEL SYNAGOGUE. See Meisei,, Mor-
DECAi Marcus ; Prague.

MEISELS, DOB BERUSH B. ISAAC : Po-
lish rabbi and statesman; born in Szczekoeiny about
1800; died in Warsaw March 17, 1870. Ho was a
scion of one of the oldest families in Cracow, and
was brought up in Kamenetz, Podolia, where his
father (d. 1832) was rabbi. After marrying the
daughter of the wealthy Solomon Bornstein of
Wielicka, he settled as a banker in Cracow, of which
city he became rabbi in 1832. He occupied the rab-
binate for nearly a quarter of a century, but was not
recognized by the entire community, a considerable
part of which adhered to his opponent, R. Saul
Landau. Meisels always took a conspicuous part in
the civic life of his place of residence; and in the
stormy times of 1846 he was chosen one of the twelve
senators of Cracow. In 1848 he was elected, with
the aid of Catholic votes, to represent tiie city in the
provisional Austrian Reichsrath, meeting at Krem-
sier. He took his .seat among the radicals, and when
the president expressed his surprise at seeing a rabbi
seated on the " left, " Meisels gave the reply : " Juden
habcn keine Rechte" (Jews have no right!).

In 1856 Meisels became rabbi of Warsaw, where
he so(.n gained the respect and confidence of the en-
tire population. In 1861, during the riots and ex-
cesses which preceded the outbreak of the second
Polish insurrection, he did everything in his power
to induce the Jews to sympathize with the cau.se of
Poland. He accompanied tlie Archbishop of War-
saw to the funeral of tiie victims of tiie first out-
break and marciied together with Father Wyszynski
at the head of a delegation to the city hall. Later
he was appointed by the Russian vice-regent a mem-
ber of the provisional municipal council of Warsaw;
but he remained loyal to the cause of the Polish
patriots, thereby, it is Ix-lieved, preventing massacres
of Jews which some Polish leaders had planned and
which the Rus'^ian government was not anxirtus to
avert (" Allg. Zeit. des Jud." 1H61, p. 227). Late in



1861 Meisels, together with Dr. M. Jastrow, was
arrested and thrown into prison; after several
months' confinement both were expelled from
the country. Meisels was invited to settle in Lon-
don; but in 1862 he was permitted to return to
Warsaw, where he remained until his death.

Meisels was the author of novelise on the " Sefer
ha-Mizwot" of Maimonides, which appeared to-
gether with the text as "Hiddushe MaHaRDaM"
(Warsaw, 1870). One of his sons, Israel Meisels,
was dayyan in Cracow and rabbi of Siedlce, Poland,
from 1858 to 1867. He died in Cracow Nov. 17,
1875, aged 58("Ha-Maggid," xix.407). Another son,
Solomon Meisels, was living in Vienna in 1871.

BmLiOGRAPHY: B. D. RabDinowicz, Doheb Sifte Yeslicnim,
Warsaw, 1870; Angelchik, is/i Hay yi/, Cracow. 1871; Fuenn.
Kcneact Yisrael, p. 18.5, Warsaw, 1886; VVettstein, Toledot
MaHaRaN (biography of Hayyim N. Dembltzer), pp. 14 et
.seQ., Cracow, 18ii;j; Orient, 1848, pp.240, 348. 358; 1849, pp.
1.5-16; u^llg. Zeit. des Jud. 1861, pp. 177, 214, 228; 1862, p. 22 ;
Ha-Shahar, vlii. 504.
11. R. ■ P. Wl.

MEISELS, NAHUM. See Cracow.

MEISSEN. See Saxony.

MEKILTA (plural, Mekilata) : The halakic
midrash to Exodus. The name " Mekilta," which
corresponds to the Hebrew " middah " (= " measure,"
"rule"), was given to this midrash because the Scrip-
tural comments and explanations of the Law which
it contains are based on fixed rules of Scriptural
exegesis ("middot"; comp. Talmud Her.meneu-
Tics). The halakic midrashim are in general called
" middot, " in contrast to the " halakot, " or formulated
laws; and an interpreter of the Midrash was termed
" bar mekilan " = " a man of the rules " (Lev. R. iii.).
Neither the Babylonian nor the Palestinian Talmud
mentions this work under the name "Mekilta," nor
does the word occur in any of the passages of the
Talmud in which the other halakic midrashim, Sifra
and Sifre, are named (Hag. 3a; Kid. 49b; Ber. 471);
etc.). It seems to be intended, liowever, in one
passage (Yer. 'Ab. Zarah iv. 8), which runs as fol-
lows: "R. Josiah showed a mekilta from which he
cited and explained a sentence." His quotation
actually occurs in the Mekilta, Mishpatim (ed. Weiss,
p. 106b). It is not certain, however, whether the
word "mekilta" here refers to the work under con-
sideration ; for it possibly alludes to abaraita colleo-
tiou — which might also be designated a " mekilta"
(comp. Pes. 48a; Tern. 3;3a; Git. 44a)— containing
the sentence in question. On the other hand, this mid-
rash, apparently in written form, is mentioned several
times in the Talmud under the title "She'ar Sifre
debe Rab " = " The Other Books of the Schoolhouse "
(Yoma74a; B. B. 121b). Ageonic responsum (Ilar-
kavy, "Teshubot ha-Geonim," p. 31, No. 66, Berlin,
1888) in which occurs a passage from the Mekilta
(ed. Wei.ss, p. 41a) likewise indicates that this work
was known as "She'ar Sil're debe Rab." The first
person to mention the Mekilta by name was the
author of the " Halakot Gedolol " (p. 144a, ed. War-
saw, 1874). Another geonic responsum
First refers to it as the "Mekilta de-Erez

Mention. Yisrael" (Harkavy, l.r. p. 107, No.

229), probably to distinguish it from

the Mekilta of R. Simeon rau Yohai, which was

generally known in the Babylonian schools (Ilolf-



445



THE JEWISH ENCYCLOPEDIA



Meisel
Mekilta



nianii, "Zur Einleitung in die Ilalachischeu Mi-
drascLim," p. 06).

Tlie author, or more correctly the redactor, of the
Melcilta can uot be defiuitely ascertained. H. Nis-
sini b. Jacob, in his "Mafteah " (to Sliab. 106b), and
R. Samuel ha-Nagid, in his introduction to the Tal-
mud, refer to it as the "Mekilta de-Kabbi Yisii-
mael," thus ascribing the authorship to Islniiael.
Mainionides likewise says in the introduction to his
Yad ha-Hazakah: " R. Isluuael interpreted from
' we'eleh shemot ' to the end of the Torah, and this
explanation is called 'mekilta.' R. Akiba also
wrote a mekilta." This R. Ishmael, however, is
neither an amora by the name of Ishmael, as Fran-
kcl assumed (Introduction to Yerushalmi, p. 105b),
nor Rabbi's contemporary, Rabbi Ishmael b. R.
Jose, as Gedaliah ibu Yahya thought (" Shalshelet
ha-Kabbalah," p. 24a, Zolkiev, 1804). He is. on the
contrarj-, identical -vith R. Ishmael b. Elisha, R.
Akiba's contemporary, as is shown by the passage
of Maimonides quoted above. The present Mekilta

can not, however, be the one com-
Mekilta of posed by R. Ishmael, as is proved by
R. Ishmael. the reference to R. Ishmael's pupils

and to other later tannaim. Both Mai-
monides and the author of the " Halakot Gedolot,"
moreover, refer, evidently on the basis of a tradition,
to a much larger mekilta extending from Ex. 1. to
the end of the Pentateuch, while the midrash here
considered discusses only certain passages of Exo-
dus. It must be assumed, therefore, that R. Ishmael
composed an explanatory midrash to the last four
books of the Pentateuch, and that his pupils amplified
it (Friedmann, " Einleitung in die Mechilta;" pp. 64,
73; Hoffmann, I.e. p. 78). A later editor, intending
to compile a halakic midrash to Exodus, took R.
Ishmael's work on the book, beginning with ch. xii.,
since the first eleven chapters contained no refer-
ences to the Law (Friedmann, I.e. p. 72; Hoffmann,
I.e. p. 37). He even omitted passages from the por-
tion. which he took; but, by way of compensation,
he incorporated much material from the other ha-
lakic midrashim, Sifra, R. Simeon b. Yohai's Mekilta,
and the Sifre to Deuteronomy. Since the last two
works were from a different source, he generally des-
ignated them by the introductory phrase, "dabar
ahar" = "another explanatiob," placing them after
tlie sections taken from R. Ishmael's midrash. But
the redactor based his work on the midrash of R. Ish-
maeTs school; and the sentences of R. Ishmael and
his pupils constitute the larger part of his Mekilta.
Similarly most of the anonymous maxims in the
work were derived from the same source; so that it,
also, wasknownasthe ''Mekiltaof R. Ishmael "("Me-
kilta de-Rabbi Yislimael "). The redactor must have
been a pupil of Rabbi, since the latter is frequently
mentioned (comp. Abraham ibn David in " Sefer ha-
Kabbalah," in Neubauer. "M. J. C." p. 57, Oxford,
1887, who likewise ascribes it to a pupil of Rabbi).
He can not, however, have been R. Hoshaiah, as A.
Epstein assumes ("Beitrage zur Jildischen Alter-
thumskunde," p. 55, Vienna, 1887), and as might be
inferred from Abraham ibn David's reference; for
Hoshaiah is mentioned in the Mekilta (ed. Weiss, p.
60b). Rab (Abba Arika) therefore probably re-
dacted the work, as Menahem ibn Zerah says in the



preface to "Zedah la-Derek "(p. 14b). Rab, how-
ever, did uot do this in Babylonia, as Weiss as-
sumes ("Einleitung in die Mechilta," p. 19), but in
Palestine, taking it after its. completioji to Baby-
lonia, so that it was called the Mekilta of Palestine
"Mekilta de-Erez Yisrael ").

Baraitot from the Mekilta are introduced in the

Babylonian Talmud by the phra.ses " Tena debe R.

Yishmael " = " It was taught in the

Quotations school of R. Ishmael, "and in the Pal

in the estinian Talmud and the haggadic

Talmud, midrashim by "Teni II. Yishmael" =
"R. Ishmael taught." Yet there are
many baraitot in the Talmud which contain com-
ments on Exodus, and which are introduced by the
phrase "Tena debe R. Yishmael," but are not in-
cluded in the Mekilta under discussion. These
must have been included in R. Ishmael's original
Mekilta, and the fact that they are omitted in this
midrash is evidence that its redactor excluded many
of the passages from R. Ishmael's work (comp.
Hoffmann, I.e. p. 42).

The Mekilta begins with Ex. xii., this being the
first legal section found in Exodus. That this is
the beginning of the Mekilta is shown by the
" 'Aruk," s.r. NDt3, and by the " Seder Tannaim we-
Amora'im " (ed. Luzzatto, p. 12, Prague, 1839). In
like manner R. Nissim proves in his " Mafteah " (to
Shab. 106b) that the conclusion of the Mekilta which
he knew corresponded with that of the Mekilta now
extant.

In the editions the Mekilta is divided into nine
"massektot," each of which is subdivided into "pa-
rashiyyot." The nine massektot are as follows: (1)
"Massekta de-Pesha," covering the pericope"Bo"
(quoted as "Bo"), Ex. xii. 1-xiii. 16, and containing
an introduction, " petikta, " and 18 sections ; (2) " Mas-
sekta de-Wayehi Beshallah " (quoted as " Besh."), ib.
xiii. 17-xiv. 31, containing an introduction and 6
sections; (3) "Massekta de-ShiraU" (quoted. at>
"Shir"), ih. xv. 1-21, containing 10 sections; (4)
" Massekta de-Wayassa' " (quoted aa" Way."), ib. xv.
22-xvii. 7, containing 6 sections; (5) "Massekta de-
'Amalek," consisting of two parts, {n) the part
dealing with Amalek (quoted as "Am."), ib. xvii.
8-16, containing 2 sections, and {b) the beginning of
the pericope "Yitro" (quoted as " Yitro"), ib. xviii.
1-27. also containing 2 sections; (6) "Massekta de-
Bahodesh" (quoted as "Bah."), ib. xix. 1-20, 26,
containing 11 sections; (7) "Massekta de-Nezikin,"
ib. xxi. 1-xxii. 23; and (8) "Massekta de-Kaspa,"z'6.
xxii. 24-xxiii. 19; these last two massektot, which
belong to the pericope "Mishpatim," contain 20 sec-
tions, consecutively numbered, and are quoted as
"Mish."; (9) "Massekta de-Shabbeta," containing 2
sections, (a) covering the pericope "Ki Tissa"
(quoted as "Ki"), ib. xxxi. 12-17, and (b) covering
the pericope " Wayakhel " (quoted as "Wayak."),
ib. XXXV. 1-3. The Mekilta comprises altogether sev-
enty-seven, or, if the two introductions be included,
seventy-nine sections. All the editions, however,
state at the end that there are eighty-two sections
(comp. Weiss, I.e. p. 28; Friedmann, I.e. pp. 78-80).

Although the redactor intended to produce a hala-
kic midrash to Exodus, the larger portion of the
Mekilta is haggadic in character. From Ex. xii.



Mekilta

Mekize Nittiamiin



THE JEWISH ENCYCLOPEDIA



446



the miclrasli was continued without interruption as
far as Ex. xxxiii. 19, i.e., to tlie conclusion of the

chief laws of the book, although there
Haggadic are many narrative portions scattered
Elements, through this section wliose niidrash

belongs properly to the haggadah.
Furthermore, many haggadot are included in the
legal sections as well. The halakic exegesis of the
Mekilta, which is found chiefly in the massektot
" Bo," " Bah.." and " Mish.." and in the sections " Ki "
and "Wayak.," is, as the name "mekilta" indicates,
based on the application of the middot according
to R. Ishmael's system and method of teach-
ing. In like manner, the introductory formulas
and the technical terms are borrowed from his mid-
rash (comp. Hoffmann, I.e. pp. 43-44). On the otlier
hand, there are many explanations and expositions
of the Law which follow the simpler methods of
exegesis found in the earlier halakah (comp. Mid-
rash Hal.\kaii).

The haggadic expositions in the Mekilta, which are
found chiefly in " Beshailah " and " Yitro," are in part
actual exegeses, but the majority of them are merely
interpretations of Scripture to illustrate certain eth-
ical and moral tenets. Parables are frequently in-
troduced in connection with these interpretations
(e.rj., "Bo," ed. Weiss, p. lb; "Besh.," pp. 36a, b,
37a). as well as proverbs (f.^'., "Bo," p. 2b; "Way.,"
p. 60b) and maxims (e..«7., the apothegm of the an-
cient Zekenim, "Besh.," p. 63b; "Shir," p. 46b).
Especially noteworthy are the haggadot relating to
the battles of the Ephraimites ("Besh.," p. 28b) and
to Serah, Asher's daughter, who showed Joseph's
coffin to Moses {ih. p. 29a), .besides others, wliich are
based on old tales and legends.

It must also be noted that some of the tannaim
mentioned in the Mekilta are referred to only here
and in Sifre, Num., which likewise originated in R.
Ishmael's school (comp. Hoffmann, I.e. pp. 38-39).
On the earlier editions of the Mekilta and the com-
mentaries to it see Weiss, I.e. pp. 25-26, and Fried-
mann, I.e. pp. 12-14. The following are more recent
critical editions: J. H. Weiss, "Mechilta" (with in-
troduction and commentary), Vienna, 1865; M. Fried-
mann, "Mechilta de-Rabbi Ismael" (with introduc-
tion and commentary), ih. 1870.

Bibliography : Hirscli Chajes. laaeret Bikkoret, p. 5a, Lem-
herg, 1840; Zunz. G. F. pp. I 52, Frankfort-on-the-Maln, 1892;
Z. t'rankel, Hndeyetica in Muiclmam, p. 308, Lelpsic, 18,59;
iilem, in Mf)na(.x.sr/?ri/f, laVi pp. 388 et seq.: 1854, pp. 149-
158. 191-196 ; .1. H. Weiss. EinJeitung in die Mechilta, pp. 16-
:5.5; M. Friedmann, EinJeitung in die Mechilta, pp..9-80; D.
HolTmann, Znr FAnleAtunp in die IJaiachwhen. Midra-
schim. pp. 36-45, Berlin, 1H87; L. A. Rosenthal, Einigen llher
(Ve Agadain der Mechilta, in Kohut Memorial Volume,
pp. 463-484. ih. 1897.
rt. J. Z. L.

MEKILTA DE-RABBI SHIM'ON : Halakic

midrash on Kxodus innn the school of R. Akiba.

No midrash of this name is mentioned in Talmudic

literature; but medieval authors refer to one which



Online LibraryIsidore SingerThe Jewish encyclopedia : a descriptive record of the history, religion, literature, and customs of the Jewish people from the earliest times to the present day (Volume 8) → online text (page 108 of 169)