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Black cummin is one of the sixty deadly drugs.

Berachoth, fol. 40, col. 1.

Ulla and Rav Chasda were once traveling together, when they came up to the gate of the house of Rav Chena bar Chenelai. At sight of it Rav Chasda stooped and sighed. "Why sighest thou?" asked Ulla, "seeing, as Rav says, sighing breaks the body in halves; for it is said (Ezek. xxi. 6), 'sigh, therefore, O son of man, with the breaking of thy loins;' and Rabbi Yochanan says a sigh breaks up the whole constitution; for it is said (Ezek. xxi. 7), 'And it shall be when they say unto thee, Wherefore sighest thou? that thou shalt answer, For the tidings because it cometh, and the whole heart shall melt,'" etc. To this Rav Chasda replied, "How can I help sighing over this house, where sixty bakers used to be employed during the day, and sixty during the night, to make bread for the poor and needy; and Rav Chena had his hand always at his purse, for he thought the slightest hesitation might cause a poor but respectable man to blush; and besides he kept four doors open, one to each quarter of the heavens, so that all might enter and be satisfied? Over and above this, in time of famine he scattered wheat and barley abroad, so that they who were ashamed to gather by day might do so by night; but now this house has fallen into ruin, and ought I not to sigh?"

Ibid., fol. 58, col. 2.

Egypt is a sixtieth of Ethiopia, Ethiopia a sixtieth of the world, the world is a sixtieth part of the garden of Eden, the garden itself is but a sixtieth of Eden, and Eden a sixtieth of Gehenna. Hence the world in proportion to Gehenna is but as the lid to a caldron.

P'sachim, fol. 94, col. 1.

They led forth Metatron and struck him sixty bastinadoes with a cudgel of fire.

Chaggigah, fol. 15, col. 1.

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In the context of the foregoing quotation occurs an anecdote of Rabbi Elisha ben Abuyah which is too racy to let pass, and too characteristic to need note or comment. One day Elisha ben Abuyah was privileged to pry into Paradise, where he saw the recording angel Metatron on a seat registering the merits of the holy of Israel. Struck with astonishment at the sight, he exclaimed, "Is it not laid down that there is no sitting in heaven, no shortsightedness or fatigue?" Then Metatron, thus discovered, was ordered out and flogged with sixty lashes from a fiery scourge. Smarting with pain, the angel asked and obtained leave to cancel the merits of the prying Rabbi. One day--it chanced to be on Yom Kippur and Sabbath--as Elisha was riding along by the wall where the Holy of Holies once stood, he heard a Bath Kol proclaiming, "Return, ye backsliding children, but Acher abide thou in thy sin" (Acher was the Rabbi's nickname). A faithful disciple of his hearing this, and bent on reclaiming and reforming him, invited him to go and hear the lads of a school close by repeat their lessons. The Rabbi went, and from that to another and another, until he had gone the round of a dozen seminaries, in the last of which he called up a lad to repeat a verse who had an impediment in his speech. The verse happened to be Ps. 1. 16, "But unto the wicked, God saith, Why dost thou declare my law?" Acher fancied the boy said, and to Elisha (his own name), instead of and to Rasha, that is, the wicked. This roused the Rabbi into such fury of passion, that he sprang to his feet, exclaiming: "If I only had a knife at hand I would cut this boy into a dozen pieces, and send a piece to each school I have visited!"

A woman of sixty runs after music like a girl of six.

Moed Katon, fol. 9, col. 2.

Rabba, who only studied the law, lived forty years; Abaii, who both studied the law and exercised benevolence, lived sixty.

Rosh Hashanah, fol. 18, col. 1.

The manna which came down upon Israel was sixty ells deep.

Yoma, fol. 76, col. 1.

It is not right for a man to sleep in the daytime any longer than a horse sleeps. And how long is the sleep of a horse? Sixty respirations.

Succah, fol. 26, col. 2.

Abaii says, "When I left Rabbah, I was not at all hungry; but when I arrived at Meree, they served up before me sixty dishes, with as many sorts of viands, and I ate half of each, but as for hotch-potch, which the last dish contained, I ate up all of it, and would fain have eaten up the dish too." Abaii said, "This illustrates the proverb, current

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among the people, 'The poor man is hungry, and does not know when he has eaten enough; or, there is always room for a tit-bit.'"

Meggillah, fol. 7, col. 2.

There are sixty kinds of wine; the best of all is the red aromatic wine, and bad white wine is the worst.

Gittin, fol. 70, col. 1.

Samson's shoulders were sixty ells broad.

Soteh, fol. 10, col. 1.

Ebal and Gerizim were sixty miles from Jordan.

Ibid., fol. 36, col. 1.

One who makes a good breakfast can outstrip sixty runners in a race (who have not).

Bava Kama, fol. 92, col. 2.

A (hungry) person who looks on while another eats, experiences sixty unpleasant sensations in his teeth.


His wife made him daily sixty sorts of dainties, and these restored him again.

Bava Metzia, fol. 84, col. 2.

Rabbi Elazar, the son of Rabbi Shimon, once vindictively caused a man too be put to death, merely because he had spoken of him as Vinegar the son of Wine, a round-about way of reproaching him that he was the bad son of a good father, though it turned out afterward that the condemned man deserved death for a crime that he was not known to be guilty of at the time of his execution; yet the mind of the Rabbi was ill at ease, and he voluntarily did penance by subjecting himself in a peculiar fashion to great bodily suffering. Sixty woolen cloths were regularly spread under him every night, and these were found soaked in the morning with his profuse perspiration. The result of this was greater and greater bodily prostration, which his wife strove, as related above, day after day to repair, detaining him from college, lest the debates there should prove too much for his weakened frame. When his wife found that he persisted in courting these sufferings, and that her tender care, as well as her own patrimony, were being lavished on him in vain, she tired of her assiduity, and left him to his fate. And now, waited on by some sailors, who believed they owed to him deliverance from a watery grave, he was free to do as he liked. One day, being ministered to by them after a night's perspiration of the kind referred to, he went straight to college, and there decided sixty doubtful cases against the unanimous dissent of the assembly. Providential circumstances, which happened afterward, both proved that he was right in his judgment and that his wife was wrong in suffering her fondness for him to stand in the way of the performance of his public duties.

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Elijah frequently attended the Rabbi's seat of instruction, and once, on the first of a month, he came in later than usual. Rabbi asked what had kept him so late. Elijah answered, "I have to wake up Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob one after the other, to wash the hands of each, and to wait until each has said his prayers and retired to rest again." "But," said Rabbi, "why do they not all get up at the same time?" "The answer was, "Because if they prayed all at once, their united prayers would hurry on the coming of the Messiah before the time appointed." Then said Rabbi, "Are there any such praying people among us?" Elijah mentioned Rabbi Cheyah and his sons. Then Rabbi announced a fast, and the Rabbi Cheyah and his sons came to celebrate it. In the course of repeating the Shemoneh Esreh[*] they were about to say, "Thou restoreth life to the dead" when the world was convulsed, and the question was asked in heaven, "Who told them the secret?" So Elijah was bastinadoed sixty strokes with a cudgel of fire. Then he came down like a fiery bear, and dashing in among the people, scattered the congregation.

Bava Metzia, fol. 85, col. 2.

When love was strong, we could lie, as it were, on the edge of a sword; but now, when love is diminished, a bed sixty ells wide is not broad enough for us.

Sanhedrin, fol. 7, col. 1.

The pig bears in sixty days.

Bechoroth, fol. 8, col. 1.

Sixty iron mines are suspended in the sting of a gnat.

Chullin, fol. 58, col. 2.

An egg once dropped out of the nest of a bird called Bar-Yuchnei, which deluged sixty cities and swept away three hundred cedars. The question therefore arose, "Does the bird generally throw out its eggs?" Rav Ashi replied, "No; that was a rotten one."

Bechoroth, fol. 57, col. 2.

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