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BEI-RAV (Aram. בֵּי רַב), term in talmudic literature designating a place of elementary or advanced education (e.g., Sanh. 33b, 17b; Yev. 83b). A related term in Hebrew is bet rabban (e.g., Shab. 119b). The students at the bei rav also lived there (Ber. 25a). De-Vei-Rav is also used by some amoraim as a term for certain collections of tannaitic literature. She'ar Sifrei de-Vei-Rav ("Other Books of Bei-Rav") mentioned by some amoraim (Yoma 74a; bb 124b), are explained by Rashi as the tannaitic commentaries on Numbers and Deuteronomy, although Solomon b. Abraham *Adret and *Gershom b. Judah include the Midrash on Exodus as well. For them, the Midrash on Leviticus (Sifra de-Vei Rav) was the book of Bei-Rav as everyone was so well versed with it, whereas the other works were somewhat less well-known. Zunz identifies *Sifra and Sidra de-Vei-Rav (also known as Torat Kohanim) with the commentary on Leviticus, and Sifrei and Sifrei de-Vei-Rav with the commentary on Numbers and Deuteronomy. Known under the single name of *Sifrei, these midrashic commentaries were taught for the first time by Rav in Babylonia (Zunz, Vortraege, 49f.). Maimonides and Menahem Meiri after him considered Rav the author of these works. M. Friedmann, in his introduction to the *Mekhilta (1870; xviff.), identifies Sifra with Torat Kohanim (i.e., the commentary on Lev.) and Sifra de-Vei-Rav with miscellaneous *baraitot of Rav, or of the academy of Rav. D. Hoffman (Zur Einleitung in die halachischen Midraschim (1887), 13–20, and Mar Samuel (1873), 68f.), subscribes to the view that the term "tanna de-Vei-Rav" embraces the Sifra and Sifra de-Vei-Rav, a collection of the teachings of the sages at the academy of Rabbi Huna (cf. Sanh. 17b). For more on the halakhic midrashim, see *Midrashei Halakhah.


Weiss, Dor, 2 (19044), 206f.; Bacher, Bab Amor, 2; idem, Ergaenzungen und Berichtigungen… (1913), 5; Gruenhut, in: Sefer le-David Ẓevi (Festschrift… D. Hoffmann) (1914), 1–11 (Heb.); J.Z. Lauterbach (ed.), Mekhilta, 1 (1933), xxiff. (Eng. and Heb.); J.N. Epstein, Mevo'ot le-Sifrut ha-Tanna'im (1957), 646ff., 728ff.; Ch. Albeck, Mavo la-Talmudim (1969), 102–6.