First, there was the Schottenstein Edition Hebrew Talmud, affectionately known as the “Blue Gemara.” It was followed by the Ryzman Edition Hebrew Mishnah, the Zichron Asher Herzog Hebrew Sefer HaChinuch, and the Schottenstein Hebrew Edition of the Yerushalmi Talmud.
Different as they are from each other, these Hebrew-language sets have some things in common. They are all very successful, with tens of thousands of readers poring over their pages. Though loosely based on ArtScroll’s English-language texts, they all bring new features, a new style, and new insights. And they all prove that even in English-speaking communities, many prefer to learn the classic texts in Hebrew.
So here is exciting news for those readers who prefer Hebrew-language learning: The publication of the first volume in the Ryzman Edition Hebrew Midrash Rabbah!
This series is designed to be both comprehensive enough for scholars and “user- friendly” enough for those seeking to share the wisdom of the Midrash at their Shabbos tables or in divrei Torah. The elucidation of the Midrash text has been expanded, allowing readers to appreciate the teachings of the Midrash without the necessity of deeper study. For those who do want to learn the commentaries, the Etz Yosef, Maharzu, Matnos Kehunah, and Eshed HaNechalim have been carefully proofread and punctuated. And the original, classic Midrash commentary, Yefeh Toar, has been quoted extensively. Explanatory notes give more background information, but are not essential for those who simply want to taste the flavor and understand the p’shat of the Midrash.
Readers of the English-language Kleinman Edition Midrash Rabbah have hailed the “Insights” section, in which we see the Midrash through the eyes of major medieval and contemporary giants of Torah thought, from Ramban and Rabbeinu Bachya to Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch, Sfas Emes, Rabbi Eliyahu Dessler, and scores of others. The Ryzman Edition Hebrew Midrash Rabbah includes an even more expanded “Insights” feature, sure to enhance the reader’s experience.
The first volume, Parashas Shemos – Beshalach, is now available, and the second and final volume of Sefer Shemos, Yisro – Pekudei, will be released in time for the Torah reading.
In Hebrew or in English, ArtScroll’s Midrash Rabbah opens to all of us the spiritual treasures that we find in the Midrash.