Talmud of The People

February 7, 2017

Source: The Jewish Week


As of this week, Sefaria, the organization that is assembling a free library of Jewish texts online, is making available the William Davidson Talmud, the first free Creative Commons-licensed digital edition of the Babylonian Talmud. On behalf of the public, Sefaria has secured rights to Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz Even Israel’s complete Modern Hebrew and English translations of the Talmud from the Koren Talmud Bavli. Their website features the traditional commentaries interlinked, and linked to other texts in the Jewish canon.

“The Talmud will now belong to, and be freely accessible by, all people in the two languages spoken by 90 percent of world Jewry,” says Joshua Foer, the best-selling author and co-founder of Sefaria. “IP experts we’ve talked to believe this is the most significant work of intellectual property ever transferred into the creative commons philanthropically.” This is a concept that bends the traditional ideas of publishing and distributing texts.

Those visiting the site can learn Talmud, retrace Talmudic trains of thought through clicking to other texts, print copies of pages for review, create source sheets for teaching and have free use of the material for non-commercial purposes.

The William Davidson Talmud will continually evolve as more translations, commentaries and connections are added to the site. The English tractates that have been published are available, and the modern Hebrew translations will appear online later this year. Matthew Miller, publisher of Koren, says he expects that the entire Talmud in English will be complete by late 2018 or early 2019, and will be available on Sefaria.

Read more at The Jewish Week.

Updated: Feb. 15, 2017