ABBA BAR AVINA


ABBA BAR AVINA
ABBA BAR AVINA (third century), Palestinian amora. He was also called Abba b. Binah, Abba b. Minah, or simply Buna. He was of Babylonian origin and studied there at the academy of rav (cf. TJ, Sanh. 3:3, 2la) but later immigrated to Ereẓ Israel. Among his pupils were R. Abba b. Zavda and R. Berechiah. Most of his sayings are quoted in the Jerusalem Talmud and in the Midrash (e.g., Lev. R. 20:12); he is mentioned only once in the Babylonian Talmud (Shab. 60b). Abba   b. Avina was consulted in legal questions (TJ, ibid.) and seems to have officiated as a judge (TJ, BM, 5:2,10a). He interpreted I Chronicles 22:14: "Behold in my straits I have prepared for the house of the Lord … etc." to teach that wealth does not matter before the Creator of the universe. A moving confession, composed by him, is quoted at the end of Jerusalem Talmud (Yoma 8:10,45c): "My God, I have sinned and done wicked things. I have persisted in my bad disposition and followed its direction. What I have done I will do no more. May it be Thy will, O Everlasting God, that Thou mayest blot out my iniquities, forgive all my transgressions, and pardon all my sins." The Palestinian amora, R. Ḥigrah, was his brother (TJ, Meg. 1:11,71c). -BIBLIOGRAPHY: Bacher, Pal Amor; Hyman, Toledot, 14.

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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