(1) Babylonian sage who flourished in the transitional period from the tannaim to the amoraim (late second – early third century C.E.). The father of rav and the brother of Ḥiyya (Pes. 4a; Sanh. 5a), he studied in Ereẓ Israel, where he frequently visited Eleazar b. Zadok, whose customs and halakhic decisions he quotes (Suk. 44b). (2) The son of Rav, who told him "I have labored with you in halakhah, but without success. Come and I will teach you worldly wisdom" (Pes. 113a). (3) The grandson of Rav (Suk. 44b), and a frequent visitor to his home. (4) Amora and prominent aggadist (late third – early fourth century C.E.). While he transmitted some halakhic statements in the name of Yannai (Ket. 54b; Kid. 19a; et al.), he was mainly interested in aggadah, quoting the aggadic interpretations of tannaim and amoraim such as R. Meir (Mid. Ps. 101, end), R. Eliezer b. R. Yose ha-Gelili (Tanḥ. B., No'aḥ, 24, 53), and R. Johanan (Gen. R. 82, 5). His aggadic comments, popular among homilists, were frequently quoted by them, especially by R. Yudan b. Simeon (ibid., 73:3; Mid. Ps. 24:11; et al.), R. Huna, R. Phinehas, and R. Berechiah. One of his aggadic maxims is "No man departs from this world with half his desires realized. If he has a hundred, he wants two hundred, and if he has two hundred, he wants four hundred" (Eccl. R. 1:13). -BIBLIOGRAPHY: Bacher, Pal Amor; Hyman, Toledot, 138. (Zvi Kaplan)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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