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AMEIMAR (c. 400 c.e.), Babylonian amora. Although he acted in a judicial capacity, and also gave halakhic decisions at Maḥoza (Shab. 95a; rh 31b), he was a Nehardean and one of that city's leading sages (bb 31b; et al.). He was also the head of the newly reactivated yeshivah in Maḥoza. On the Sabbath preceding a festival, he came to his seat on the shoulders of his students (Beẓah 25b). In Nehardea he also served as a dayyan, and instituted certain regulations (Suk. 55a; et al.). It is not clear who his teachers were, but he transmitted statements in the name of Rava (Kid. 10a), and quoted the views of R. Zevid and R. Dimi, sages of Nehardea (ibid., 72b; Ḥul. 51b), and of the elders of Pumbedita (Er. 79b). Among those who attended his yeshivah were Mar Zutra, later head of the yeshivah of Pumbedita, and R. Ashi, the editor of the Babylonian Talmud (Ber. 44b, 50b; Men. 37b; Beẓah 22a; et al.) The exilarch, R. Huna b. Nathan, was his close friend and quoted halakhot he had heard from Ameimar (Zev. 19a; Kid. 72b; Git. 19b). Most of the statements cited in his name deal with halakhic subjects. Of his aggadic interpretations the following are examples: "A sage is superior to a prophet" (bb 12a), and "As a rule a heathen behaves lawlessly," applying to them the statement in Psalms 144:11, "Whose mouth speaketh falsehood, and their right hand is a right hand of lying" (bb 45a). Ameimar's son, Mar, was a pupil of R. Ashi (Suk. 32b).


Hyman, Toledot, 227–29; Bacher, Bab Amor, 146ff.

[Yitzhak Dov Gilat]