Saturday, 24 August 2013

Student of the Talmud, Trnava, Czechoslovakia, 1937, Roman Vishniac.

 Boys were admitted to yeshiva from about the age of four. In their dimly lit schoolroom (cheder), these youngsters read and wrote Hebrew. They became knowledgeable about the Five Books of Moses–the first five books of the Old Testament–and they studied the commentaries on the Talmud, particulary the commentaries of Rashi, a famed scholar of the eleventh century. The Talmud is the compendium of Jewish law and lore which forms the basis of religious life. In the cheder, seeds of learning were planted, and "Tradition" was continually renewed and reviewed. Perhaps I should call these pictures "The Faces of Learning."