Thursday, September 18, 2008

Haman's Descendants

The Gemora (Gittin 57) had stated that some of Haman’s grandchildren (his son’s sons) taught Torah in Bnei Brak.

There are those who ask the following: How is this possible? Why, behold, we do not accept converts from Amalek!?

Reb Yosef Engel answers that it is possible in the following scenario: An Amaleki woman got married to an idolater from a different nation. She gave birth to a son. That son is not regarded as an Amaleki, for the law regarding idolaters is that a child’s heritage is based upon his father, not his mother. A child from this son could be accepted as a convert. It emerges that the Gemora did not mean that Haman’s son’s sons converted; rather, there were descendants from Haman who converted and taught Torah in Bnei Brak.


joshwaxman said...

Welcome back! And shkoyach.
Another easy possibility is that this gemara does not assume like the midrash that Haman was an Amalekite, but rather that he was an Aggagite, as a different nation, rather than as a descendant of Agag.
I have thoughts on the post above, but perhaps later.

Kol Tuv,