Thursday, March 22, 2007

parshablog: Introducing the Absolut Haggada

While browsing on jblog ( I found this excellent Haggadah. It deals with many of the same issues that I spoke about in the shiur (which is in the previous post) and answers some of the outstanding questions, such as when the Haggadah was put into its present form (some time in the Gaonic period, though we have fragments from the Cairo Geniza which are pretty similar to todays Haggadah).
They also have a nifty chart which shows the parallels and differences between Rav and Shmuel in the way that the Haggadah is set out (and how we do both). They have also given the verses which we will spend most of the Seder explaining, and discuss why the authors of the Haggadah chose those verses (from Devarim) instead of the story itself which is in Shemot.
There is then a commentary on the Haggadah which will serve you well on the Seder night (if you so desire).

I think it is an excellent piece of work, but don't just take my word for it. Have a look yourself.

The link to their blog is parshablog: Introducing the Absolut Haggada (which is actually also just a good blog in general) or you can type into your web browser.

PS If you are not an American, Maxwell House is a brand of coffee that makes (or perhaps once upon a time made) Haggadot which apparently everyone in America owns several copies of (although perhaps it is mostly the Jews in New York who own them - it is all a mystery to me)

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