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Ravina

RAVINA

RAVINA (abbreviation of Rav Avina), the name of several Babylonian amoraim, some of whom are mentioned with their patronymics and some without. At times it is difficult to identify the particular Ravina. The two best known are: ravina i (d. 422), who studied under Rava (Ber. 20b; 38a, et al.), and also maintained contact with Rava's other pupils, Naḥman b. Isaac, Papa, and Huna b. Joshua (Pes. 105a; bm 74b; Sanh. 69a). He had frequent discussions with R. Ashi, who was his junior. He attended his academy in *Mata Meḥasya and referred to himself as a pupil-colleague of Ashi (Er. 63a; et al.). He gave rulings on various occasions (Er. 40a, 63a). The statement, "Ravina and R. Ashi conclude the [authoritative] teaching [of the Talmud]" (bm 86a), may refer to him (Ravina's name occurs before that of Ashi in many manuscripts and early sources; see bibl., Sinai Sefer Yovel, 60, n. 6). He was renowned for his devotion to study and it was said of him that "he made nights as days in study of the Torah" (mk 25b; see Dik. Sof., ibid.). He had a son and daughter (bm 104b; Nid. 66a), and lived to an advanced age ("Seder Tanna'im ve-Amora'im" in Maḥzor Vitry, p. 483). Lavish eulogies were delivered at his death (mk 25a).

Ravina ii (d. 499), Ravina b. Huna, apparently a nephew of Ravina i (Ket. 100b). His father, who was a scholar since he transmitted sayings of R. Papi (Ned. 90a) and of R. Joseph (Ned. 60b), died while Ravina was still young and his mother reported some of his father's customs in a number of halakhot that were in dispute (Ber. 39b; Men. 68b). Maremar was his main teacher and Ravina frequently discussed halakhic problems with him (Shab. 81b; et al.). Ravina served as dayyan in Mata Meḥasya and helped Ashi's daughter collect the portion of her father's property that was her due from the property of her brother Mar (Ket. 69a). On the death of Rabbah Tosfa'ah in 474, Ravina succeeded him as head of the academy of Sura (Iggeret R. Sherira Ga'on, ed. by B.W. Lewin (1921), 95; and see Abraham ibn Daud, Sefer ha-KabbalahBook of Tradition, ed. by G.D. Cohen, 1942). During that period the Babylonian government issued harsh decrees against the Jewish community; synagogues were closed and Jewish children compelled to apostasize (Iggeret R. Sherira Ga'on, p. 97). According to Sherira Gaon it is this Ravina who together with Ashi "concluded the teaching" (see above). The death of Ravina marks the end of the era of amoraim in Babylonia and the beginning of the age of the savoraim.

bibliography:

Halevy, Dorot, 2 (1923), 536–51; 3 (1923), 74–85; Hyman, Toledot s.v.; B.M. Lewin, Rabbanan Savora'im ve-Talmudam (1937), 2–6; S. Albeck, in: Sinai Sefer Yovel (1958), 57ff.; Ḥ. Albeck, ibid., 73 ff.

[Moshe Beer /

Yitzhak Dov Gilat]

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