By Norman A. Stillman
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Extra resources for Ajs Review, Spring 1990
But one cannot interpret that she was born in an astrological sign [mazzal] which causes her husband's death. ... " ("Fate" here was explained by kabbalists as meaning that the woman was destined to marry someone particular, and any other man she married would die. See Derisha to Tur,Even ha-'Ezer 9:1. This can be seen as a variant of one of the motifs in the Book of Tobit; see above at n. 21. Cf. below n. ) Note the story in B. Ketubbot 62b, cited above, of the death of Rabbi's intended daughter-in-law.
2 [Helsingfors, 1935], pp. ) 11. Nahmanides' challenge to Rashi, in his comment to v. '" THE "KILLER WIFE" SUPERSTITION IN JEWISH TRADITION 29 home. "'14 The Bible specifies(vv. 7, 10)that both Er and Onandie, or rathertheir lives are taken by the Lord, becausethey or their actions are evil in His sight. Onan'sevil is describedin verse9 as his failureto fulfill the levirate obligationby practicingcoitusinterruptus(onanism);and this explainswhy the Lordtakeshis life. For what evil does he die? 12.
Halivni, Sources and Traditions... ] (Tel-Aviv, 1968), p. 71, n. 2. ") The Rabba/Rava interchange is discussed by S. Friedman in a forthcoming study. 32. But according to the anonymous gemara in B. Nidda 64a, both Rav and Samuel follow R. Simeon b. Gamaliel. THE "KILLER WIFE" SUPERSTITION IN JEWISH TRADITION 39 c. B. Ketubbot65a After Abbaye's death, Homa appeared before Rava's court to establish how much support she was entitled to as a widow. She was obviously a very beautiful woman, and when she raised her arm to show the size of the goblets of wine she used to drink when Abbaye was alive, her sleeve fell back, and her arm was exposed.
Ajs Review, Spring 1990 by Norman A. Stillman