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Tell me something I don't know (Jewish!)
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gingertop




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 2:26 pm
Time for a Jewish trivia thread!

Tell me some Jewy fact that I don't know.

Rules:

>This is a light thread! Facts should be positive/fun/quirky/unexpected/not generally well known/weird/inspiring, etc. Could be in the context of a terrible time but with life-affirming message such as gemach run in the ghettos, etc.

>Avoid Lashon hara about individuals, communities, or EY.

>Facts only! No opinions- that's what the rest of the threads on this site are for!

>Facts should obviously be obscure and interesting but not completely random. Should be about people/institutions/places/eras that we are mostly familiar with OR about something pretty huge in Jewish life that we *should* be familiar with but most aren't. Not a story about your grandparents (unless your grandparents are famous!).
For example- Rav Kook was mesader kiddushin at Rav Elyashiv's chuppa! Ok we all know that. But just illustrating this rule- ppl we're familiar with and a quirky fact about their lives.

>Like if you didn't know that fact

>Hug if you knew already


>If someone erred- correct in another post. Do not use hugs as a dislike button (this is a pretty good rule across the board IMHO)- Hugs use strictly in this thread for previous knowledge about stated fact.
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gingertop




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 2:32 pm
20% of ALL books published incunabula (the first 50 years of the Gutenberg press) were sifrei Kodesh!
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keym




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 2:33 pm
Here's a weird random fact that someone told me this week.
July 4 1776 came out on Shiva Asar B'Tamuz.
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gingertop




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 2:50 pm
Haym Salomon never asked for repayment on the low-interest loans that he gave to support the American Revolution and therefore died in poverty.
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keym




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 2:58 pm
This one is easy. First Jewish MP in England Benjamin Disraeli. Converted to Church of England.
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proudmomma




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 3:26 pm
The shvatim had superpowers! Yehudah had metal chest hairs that when he was angry would pierce through his shield. Naftali ran so fast, the grass beneath him didn't bend! Shimon & Levi had super strength.
S ource: yalket mayim loez
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yerushamama




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 3:32 pm
Binyamin was a werewolf

source: Otzer P'laos HaTorah
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gingertop




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 3:34 pm
The Aleppo community of Aram Tzova lit a menorah with an extra branch (10 branches including shammes) to commemorate the miracle they experienced in 1492 when they were set to be expelled but were saved in the end.
They used to light 3 candles include shammes on first night, etc. until all 10 were lit on the last night of Channukah!
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trixx




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 3:50 pm
yerushamama wrote:
Binyamin was a werewolf

source: Otzer P'laos HaTorah


Can you elaborate please?
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gingertop




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 4:04 pm
Talking of Aleppo, the Aleppo Codex was famously hidden from view. A certain Yerushalmi, Shalom Shachne Yellin, received permission to view it because he had a letter of recommendation from many prominent rabbanim.
The Codex was burnt in a 1947 pogrom together with the beit knesset that housed it and one of the main sources of information about the Codex comes from the writings of Yellin and his son-in-law Kimchi, which were lost in the family house until 1989!
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giselle




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 4:13 pm
trixx wrote:
Can you elaborate please?


Rabbi Slifkin writes about this in his book, Sacred Monsters. He quotes Rabbeinu Ephraim ben Shimshon who discusses how Binyamin was a werewolf who ate Rachel when she was giving birth to him. Rabbi Slifkin says that this is a mistaken belief based on the beliefs of that time.
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gingertop




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 4:17 pm
Golda Meir's paternal grandfather was a Cantonist.
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giselle




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 4:17 pm
The Bais Yaakov girls and Cheder boys in Lakewood used to go on the bus together Very Happy
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FranticFrummie




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 4:19 pm
If you have to relieve yourself in a field, you cannot wipe your backside with a stone. The reason is that the stone may have been used in witchcraft.

Don't ask me which Gemara this is in, I read it years ago and I forgot the source. The factoid stuck in my head, though.
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gingertop




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 4:50 pm
Wissotzky Tea used to be one of the biggest tea manufacturers in Russia and by 1917, was the largest tea company in the world. The communists obviously shut them down eventually. And the branches of the family and company in Danzig were mostly killed out by the Nazis. But earlier, Ze'ev Wissostzky, who was a member of Chovevei Tzion and BILU, had established a factory in the Galil. This was what remained of the original company and the reason it still exists today.
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OutATowner




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 4:56 pm
trixx wrote:
Can you elaborate please?

Additionally, one of the reasons Yaakov was hesitant to send Binyomin to mitzrayim was because he had a doctor to supply medicine to keep him from transforming (although of course very different from the way we think about it now). Yaakov also saw through ruach hakodesh that there would be the makka of arov at some point, and didn't want Binyomin to transform and be banished with the rest if arov.
I read this a few weeks ago, with sources, in the TorahAnytime newsletter, if I figure out how to upload an image I have a screenshot I can upload.
Also, there was an animal that was similar to what we consider a unicorn. They used the hair in the building of the mishkan. I beleive it was called a tachash.
"Ain kol chodosh tachas hashemesh." The werewolves and unicorns we know are very different from, but originated from, the Torah.
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PinkFridge




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 4:57 pm
giselle wrote:
Rabbi Slifkin writes about this in his book, Sacred Monsters. He quotes Rabbeinu Ephraim ben Shimshon who discusses how Binyamin was a werewolf who ate Rachel when she was giving birth to him. Rabbi Slifkin says that this is a mistaken belief based on the beliefs of that time.


Not to go on a tangent but Rabbi Shay Tahan has a series of mini talks on different creatures, mythical and others. He probably has one on werewolves.

ETA: Outatowner, is that what you're quoting? I didn't hear them all.
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gingertop




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 4:58 pm
After the failure of R' Yehuda Hachassid's shul, and the failure to repay the loans taken to build it, the local Arab authorities banished all Ashkenazim from living in Yerushalayim. To get around this ban, the original talmidim of the Gra and the Baal Shem Tov wore golden robes in Sephardic style. This became part of their dress and they even made a whole minhag out of it. Yerushalmi caftans are made out of 26 pieces of cloth to represent the name of Hashem. They don't buy caftans in stores because they have to be custom made with all those pieces. They're extremely expensive!
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OutATowner




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 5:03 pm
PinkFridge wrote:
Not to go on a tangent but Rabbi Shay Tahan has a series of mini talks on different creatures, mythical and others. He probably has one on werewolves.

ETA: Outatowner, is that what you're quoting? I didn't hear them all.

I can't find it now, but that name sounds very familiar.
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mommy3b2c




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Jul 10 2019, 5:07 pm
OutATowner wrote:
Additionally, one of the reasons Yaakov was hesitant to send Binyomin to mitzrayim was because he had a doctor to supply medicine to keep him from transforming (although of course very different from the way we think about it now). Yaakov also saw through ruach hakodesh that there would be the makka of arov at some point, and didn't want Binyomin to transform and be banished with the rest if arov.
I read this a few weeks ago, with sources, in the TorahAnytime newsletter, if I figure out how to upload an image I have a screenshot I can upload.
Also, there was an animal that was similar to what we consider a unicorn. They used the hair in the building of the mishkan. I beleive it was called a tachash.
"Ain kol chodosh tachas hashemesh." The werewolves and unicorns we know are very different from, but originated from, the Torah.


This is fascinating. Especially the unicorns. I am obsessed with unicorns.
I’ve also heard that there used to be mermaids.
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