There Is No Friend Like A Sister

Consider the remarkable, even uncanny, inverse structural similarity between the grim, yet moving, Medrashic Tale of Two Sisters and Christina Rossetti’s dark, wonderful and quite extraordinary Goblin Market: אמרו: מעשה בשתי אחיות, שהיו דומות זו לזו והייתה האחת נשואה בעיר אחרת, בקש בעלה של אחת מהן לקנאות לה ולהשקותה מים המרים בירושלים, הלכה לאותה העיר […]

Sotah and the Fifth Amendment

This past Shabbas, I noticed an utterly astounding passage in Abravanel’s commentary to the Parshah. The context is a Sotah whom we successfully pressure into confessing her guilt prior to the erasure of the Divine name; the standard view, implied by the Mishnah and Rambam’s codification thereof, is that the consequences to her are limited […]