Cohen reevaluates the evidence in tannaitic or amoraic
literature of an independent "Babylonian Mishnah" that originated in the proto-Talmud period.
Martin Jaffee has argued that the rise in emphasis on the importance of oral tradition during the amoraic
In the event that the Tannaim reproved the patriarchs, the rebuke appeared only in Amoraic
Parts III, IV, V, and VI analyze the evolving legal and scholarly commentary and interpretations of the Old Testament text as well as changing marriage practices in the Second Temple, Tannaitic, Amoraic
, and Gaonic periods respectively.
which, as the author himself notes, spans the Amoraic
, Savoraic, and Geonic periods of Jewish history.
Yuval, "Myth of the Jewish Exile," 21, notes that in Tannaitic and early Amoraic
sources, Rome is accused only of destroying the Temple, not of exiling the people from their land.
A sampling of topics: Amoraic
Hebrew in the light of Ben Sira's linguistic innovations, aspects of the verbal systems in Qumran Hebrew, the infinitive absolute as finite verb and standard literary Hebrew of the Second Temple Period, constituent order in existential clauses, reflections on adjunct expression in the Manual of Discipline, spoken Hebrew of the late Second Temple period according to oral and written Samaritan tradition, and the weak consonants in the language of the Dead Sea Scrolls and in the Hexapla transliterations.
As early as Amoraic
Babylonia, we find that reasoning was explicitly made about the association (through a social convention) between a tall hat and social positioning.
The first set of essays, "Jewish Interpretation of the Bible," contains a wealth of historical and exegetical information arranged chronologically from "inner-biblical interpretation" through early nonrabbinic, then rabbinic, medieval, and post-medieval interpretation to modern times; charts of Tannaitic and Amoraic
rabbis in their various generations are especially helpful.
The gemara (itself an amoraic
voice which may be giving voice to the arguments of Ray Nachman himself or perhaps those of his students) is not going out on what would be the ridiculous limb of suggesting that the house of Menashe is the majority of the world, but rather, it answers the question more theoretically arguing that there is a tannaitic precedent for prohibiting general behavior on the basis of a particular practice.
It is likely that the preceding paragraph in the haggadah, about telling the story at great length, a passage that cannot be dated earlier than the amoraic
period, led to a modification of the tale of the five rabbis.
According to Neusner, a shift from tannaitic to Amoraic
sources (and therefore times) can be noticed; 'Esau' and 'Edom' begin to function as appellation to Rome only in the later Rabbinic works, not in the early, Tannaitic, sources.