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Midrash and Aggadah

Necromancer of Endor: Midrash and Aggadah

The Biblical narrative of the necromancer sheds light on Saul’s sorry state after the death of Samuel. This depiction of the king’s plight is amplified by the Rabbis, who determine that Saul’s consulting the necromancer was one of the reasons leading to his loss of the throne.

Naamah: Midrash and Aggadah

According to the Rabbis, Naamah was Noah’s wife; as her name indicates, her actions were pleasing (ne’imim—Gen. Rabbah 23:3). According to another view, however, she acted improperly, for she beat on a drum and drew people to engage in idolatry, and her musical activity increased corruption among people.

Mother of Micah: Midrash and Aggadah

An anonymous midrashic tradition mentioned by the medieval commentators posits that Micah’s mother was Delilah.

Modesty and Sexuality in Halakhic Literature

Modesty (zeni’ut), in its broad sense, represents a mode of moral conduct that is related to humility. A person who behaves modestly refrains from extroverted behavior that is supposed to speak of him- or herself. This expansive view also includes sexual modesty.

Midwife: Midrash and Aggadah

Midwifery is regarded as a profession that entails a great deal of responsibility, along with numerous risks, both to the life of the mother and to that of the newborn.

Midrash and Aggadah: Terminology

In current terminology the two terms, “midrash” and “aggadah,” refer to the two types of non-halakhic literary activity of the Rabbis.

Midrash and Aggadah: Introduction and Sources

This Encyclopedia presents the portraits of seventy-five women in the Bible as they appear in the aggadic and midrashic expansions of the Biblical narrative that were composed by the Rabbis in the first centuries c.e., in Erez Israel and in Babylonia.

Merab, daughter of Saul: Midrash and Aggadah

Merab was Saul’s eldest daughter. According to the Bible, she was meant to marry David, but she was given in matrimony to Adriel the Meholathite, while David married Merab’s younger sister Michal.

Matriarchs: A Liturgical and Theological Category

Among egalitarian religious congregations throughout the world, the most popular addition to the traditional liturgy is the mention of the Matriarchs in birkat avot (the blessing of the ancestors), the opening blessing of the Amidah.

Maacah: Bible

The regnal formula of Asa, king of Judah from 908 to 867 b.c.e., claims that his mother is Maacah the daughter of Abishalom (1 Kgs 15:10). This is problematic because the same woman is alleged to be the mother of Asa’s father, Abijah/Abijam (1 Kgs 15:2). An alternative tradition, calling Abijah’s mother Micaiah the daughter of Uriel of Gibeah, is most likely an attempted harmonization of this difficulty (2 Chr 13:2).

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Midrash and Aggadah." (Viewed on December 8, 2016) <https://jwa.org/topics/midrash-and-aggadah>.

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