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Ḥanina ben Abbahu


ḤANINA BEN ABBAHU (c. 300), Palestinian amora. Ḥanina was the son of the famous *Abbahu who lived in Caesarea. He studied under his father and transmitted teachings in his name, as well as about him (Kid. 33b; tj, Bik. 3:7, 65d; et al.), but later his father sent him to study at the yeshivah of Tiberias. When his father heard that instead of devoting himself to study there he was engaging in works of benevolence, he sent him a message: "Is it because there are no graves in Caesarea [cf. Ex. 14:11; the reverential interment of the dead being one of the highest of benevolent activities] that I sent you to Tiberias? For it has already been decided that study takes precedence over good deeds" (tj, Pes. 3:7, 30b). Ḥanina apparently returned to Caesarea (tj, Ket. 4:15, 29b) where he was a dayyan (tj, Yev. 2:4, 3d) and is referred to also as "Ḥanina of Caesarea" (Song R. 1:20, no. 3). In addition to halakhah, aggadic sayings were transmitted in his name (tj, Shab. 6:9, 8d; Lam. R., Proem 34; ibid. 2:1, no, 2; et al.).


Frankel, Mevo, 87b–88a; Hyman, Toledot, s.v.; Ḥ. Albeck, Mavo la-Talmudim (1969), 327–8.

[Zvi Kaplan]

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