Departmental Papers (Jewish Studies)

Document Type


Date of this Version


Publication Source

Journal of Textual Reasoning


6 (Old Series)




I would like to thank Aryeh for his reading of b. Sanh. 74a-75a. The mark of a good reading, to my mind, is that it does not merely explain a text, but suggests further creative interaction with it; and Aryeh's reading has done this for me. I will focus my remarks on the chief line to which Aryeh drew our attention (his line #25, in my translation): "so also must (s)he be slain rather than he transgress." Just as the textual crux of *t/yehareg* provided Aryeh with the kind of uncertainty into which a wedge that opens the text for interpretation can be fit, lines 24 and 25 both share a grammatical indeterminacy that prompts further reflection. But bear with me a moment on my way to the Sanhedrin text; as a student primarily of the Tanakh, not the Talmud, I have a biblical errand to run before I can get there.

Copyright/Permission Statement

Originally published in Textual Reasoning and can be found at


At the time of this publication, Dr. Carasik was affiliated with Hebrew College, Boston MA, but he is now a faculty member of the University of Pennsylvania.



Date Posted: 05 July 2017