SAN FRANCISCO (JTA) -- On Nov. 7, noted Talmud scholar and teacher Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz will formally conclude his Hebrew translation of the Babylonian Talmud, a monumental task that has occupied him for the past 45 years....We don't want to diminish the rabbi's contribution to learning. It was significant and noteworthy, just not properly described or put into context by JTA. And hence we lament...
But wait, we don't understand. He translated the Talmud into Hebrew? But a lot of the Talmud was already in Hebrew in the original. And Rashi and all the commentaries to the Talmud for the last 1000 years were in Hebrew already. Huh?
And he did not translate the Talmud into English - except for parts, and that was by other people who used his Hebrew "translation." Huh?
And meanwhile others such as Artscroll did translate the entire Talmud into English in less than 45 years. Huh?
And a professor and Zahavy and colleagues also did translate the entire Talmud Bavli into English, and threw in the Talmud of the Land of Israel (Yerushalmi) to boot, in less than 45 years. Huh?
Whoops. Great story Sue. Another JTA scoop, knowledge of the subject matter - optional, monumental.