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Eighteen Treatises from the Mishna, by D. A. Sola and M. J. Raphall, [1843], at


§ 1. What blessing must be said for fruit? For fruit which grows on a tree, say, "who createst the fruit of the tree" except for wine; for thereon the benediction is; "who createst the fruit of the vine." For fruits growing on the earth say "who createst the fruit of the earth" except for bread, for thereon the benediction; "who bringest forth bread from the earth" must be said. For vegetables say, "who createst the fruit of the earth" R. Jehudah saith "who createst [various] kinds of herbs."

§ 2. If he has said the benediction "who createst the fruit of the

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earth," for fruit grown on trees he has acquitted himself [of the obligation to return thanks]: but should he say "the fruit of the tree," for fruits grown on the earth, he has not acquitted himself. But if for either [kind] he said "who gave being to all things through his mandate" he has acquitted himself.

§ 3. For things which do not derive their immediate growth from the earth [ground] say ‏שהכל‎ "who gave being to all things," &c. For vinegar, unripe fruit which has dropt [off the tree], and locusts 1 say ‏שהכל‎ ["who gave being," &c.] On milk, cheese, and eggs, say [also] ‏שהכל‎. R. Jehudah saith no blessing should be pronounced over things which had their origin in a curse [or corruption], [or which partake of the character of a curse].

§ 4. If a man has before him various kinds [of fruits], R. Jehudah saith, If there be among them of the seven kinds 2, he is to pronounce the benediction thereon: but the sages say he may say the blessing on which of them he pleases.

§ 5. If the blessing on wine has been said before commencing the meal, it frees the wine drunk after the meal. If the blessing has been said over the ‏פרפרת‎ 3 eaten before the meal, it frees the ‏פרפרת‎ eaten after the meal. If the blessing has been said over the bread, it frees the ‏פרפרת‎; but the blessing on the ‏פרפרת‎ does not free the bread. Beth Shammai say, Neither does it free that which has been cooked [made dishes]."

§ 6. If several persons sit down to eat, each one must say grace for himself; but if they sit at the same table, one says grace for them all. If wine is brought to them during the meal, each one says the blessing thereon for himself: but if it is brought after the meal, one says the blessing for them all. He also says the blessing for the perfume 4, although that be not brought till after the meal.

§ 7. If salted food be set before a man, and bread with it, the blessing is said on the salted food, which frees the bread, as that is only an accessary. The general rule is, whenever any principal

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[paragraph continues] [article of food] is partaken of, with an accessary to it; the blessing is said on the principal article, which frees the accessary.

§ 8. If a person have eaten figs, grapes, and pomegranates, he must say three blessings after them. Such is the dictum of Rabbon Gamaliel: but the sages hold one blessing only, being a compendium of the three. R. Akiva saith, even if a person has eaten [nothing but] boiled pulse, and he has made his meal of it, he is bound to say the three blessings. Whoever drinks water to [satisfy] his thirst, says the blessing ‏שהכל‎. R. Tarphon saith, [he must say the blessing] ‏בורא נפשות רבות‎. ["who createst many animate beings and providest for their wants,"] &c.


8:1 Locusts form a common article of food in the East.

8:2 The Holy Land is celebrated for the production of seven kinds of fruits, &c. enumerated in Deut. viii. 8.

8:3 ‏פַּרְפֶרֶה‎ derived from the Greek παραφερομενα. It signifies here anything eaten before dinner to excite appetite; also after dinner as dessert. Some are of opinion it means anything that is usually eaten with bread παραφερομενα [food before the repast].

8:4 It was customary to introduce perfumes and incense after the meal was over.

Next: Chapter VII