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Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

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< Q3.22 TOC Q3.24 >

Question 3.23:
What are the extra-canonical (minor) tractates?


At the end of the Order Neziqin of BT, one finds a number of minor tractates:

  1. Avot de Rabbi Nathan. This is found in two versions, one with 41 chapters, another has 48.

  2. Soferim. There is a BT version of this, as well as a JT version.

  3. Eyvel Rabbati. This tractate about laws and customs pertaining to dying and mourning is sometimes euphemistically called 'Semakhot' (rejoicing) by Rashi and others.

  4. Kalah. Discusses engagement, marriage and sex.

  5. Derekh Eretz Rabbah. This phrase literally means 'The Ways of the World', but is taken to mean deportment, manners and behavior.

  6. Derekh Eretz Zutta. Addresses to scholars, it is a collection of maxims urging self examination and modesty.

  7. Pereq haShalom.

  8. Sefer Torah. Regulations about writing Torah scrolls.

  9. Mezuzah

  10. Tefillin

  11. Tzitzit

  12. Avadim. Slaves, or more accurately, indentured servants.

  13. Gerim. Converts to Judaism.

  14. Kutim. Samaritans.

The FAQ is a collection of documents that is an attempt to answer questions that are continually asked on the soc.culture.jewish family of newsgroups. It was written by cooperating laypeople from the various Judaic movements. You should not make any assumption as to accuracy and/or authoritativeness of the answers provided herein. In all cases, it is always best to consult a competent authority--your local rabbi is a good place to start.

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