Historical Who is Who

HILLEL

c110 BCE - c 10CE
Iran Palestine
RELIGION

A leading source of Jewish wisdom and judgement, providing careful interpretations and applications of the Torah. He taught alongside Shammai, a more rigorously inclined and also highly respected scholar. Hillel was elected President of the Sanhedrin. A most frequently told story about him related to his response to an honest enquirer seeking an instant response to ‘what is the Torah?’ He said “What is hateful to you, do not do to others. That is the whole of Torah; the rest is commentary on it. Now go and study.” Such was Hillel’s reputation that his descendents continued to have the position as official leader of the Jewish community for the next 400 years and in 1923 when an organisation for university Jewish students was founded it was named after him.

Life

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