Religion Past and Present

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(247 words)

[German Version]

(“Sayings of the Fathers”) is a tractate in the fourth order of the Mishnah (Neziqin). As a purely haggadic (Haggadah) work in the tradition of proverbial wisdom, Avot occupies a special position with respect to both form and content. Rabbinic tradition shows that it did not originally belong to the Mishnah, but it had already been included in the Amoraic period – in a shorter version, different from the form known today. Clearly the concluding sixth chapter (“Qinyan Torah”) is a secondary addition, and pro…

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Becker, Hans-Jürgen, “Avot”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 24 January 2021 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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