YUDAN


YUDAN
YUDAN (fourth century C.E.) Palestinian amora. Yudan was a pupil of Abba (TJ, Ket. 2:4, 26c). He had halakhic discussions with Yose, head of the academy of Tiberias, and transmits many of the dicta of his predecessors, both tannaim and amoraim. Among those who turned to him with questions was also Mani, the son of Jonah, head of the Tiberias academy who figures prominently in the Jerusalem Talmud (TJ, Kid. 2:6, 62d). Mention is made of Yudan fleeing to Noy (Naveh, Nineveh) in Transjordan, which may have been in 351, during the Roman persecutions of Ursicinus, the commander of the army of Gallus (TJ, Ket. 11:1, 34b). He is not mentioned at all in the Babylonian Talmud but many of his statements, both in halakhah and aggadah, are found in the Jerusalem Talmud and the Midrashim. In his homilies Yudan strove to encourage his contemporaries who were persecuted by the Christian kings of Rome, using parables with which he described God's profound participation in Israel's troubles and comforting them with a promise of the impending redemption (Mid. Ps. 20:1). His statement, "The redemption will not come to this nation at one time, but little by little… now they are in great distress and if the redemption were to come all together they would not be able to bear great salvation… therefore it will come little by little and grow gradually greater" (ibid. 18:36), may possibly be connected with the temporary respite during the reign of julian the apostate . He comforted his contemporaries by assuring them that their distress in this world would assure their deliverance in the world to come, putting forward an a fortiori argument. "Scripture states (Ex. 21:27) 'And if he smite out his bondman's tooth or his bondwoman's tooth, he shall let him go free for his tooth's sake.' If a slave gains his freedom for the loss of his tooth, or a single limb, how much more will this be the case with one assailed by suffering in his whole body" (Gen. R. 92:1). Noteworthy is his statement: "Whosoever supplies the righteous with bread is as though he fulfilled the whole Torah" (ibid. 58:8).   -BIBLIOGRAPHY: Hyman, Toledot, 616f.; Frankel, Mevo, 95a; Bacher, Pal Amor index; S. Klein, Ever ha-Yarden ha-Yehudi (1925) 51–53; Ḥ. Albeck, Mavo la-Talmudim (1969), 322. (Yitzhak Dov Gilat)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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