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Lesson 2 - צורת הדף - A Page from the Talmud

0) Page Numbers

  • Numbers are assigned to leaves, i.e., the front and back of the page are given one number. 
  • The number is indicated by a Hebrew letter on the upper left-hand corner of the front page as seen when the book is open.
  • The page number will of course be double the value of the Hebrew leaf number. e.g., the verso of leaf 11 will be designated as page 22.
  • References to pages in the Talmud are always by leaf number, with an "א" or "ב". e.g. Eruvin 22b; Makkot 8a. 
  • Whenever you encounter this method of citation, with just a tractate name, a number and an "א" or "ב", you can be certain that the reference is to the Babylonian Talmud.
  • In Hebrew citations (including the Mesoret Ha-Sha"S, etc.) it is common to use one or two dots after the leaf number (a period or a colon; "." or ":") in order to distinguish between the recto and verso.
  • Each tractate has its own page numbering. The numbering always begins from דף ב עמוד א.