Sacred Texts  Judaism  Index  Previous  Next 
Buy this Book at

The Talmud, by Joseph Barclay, [1878], at


1. His brethren saw him come down, and they came running to him. They hastened and sanctified their hands and their feet from the laver. They took the brushes and the forks, and went up to the top of the altar. The members and the cauls 1 (of the sacrifices) which were not consumed over night, they moved to the side of the altar. If the sides could not contain them, they laid them out in a closet at the ascent.

2. They commenced to bring up the ashes to the top of the heap, 2 and the heap was on the middle of the altar. Sometimes there was on it about three hundred cors; 3 but in the holidays they did not clear away the ashes, since they were an honour for the altar. Never was the priest lazy in removing the ashes.

3. The priests began bringing up the faggots to arrange the fire of preparation on the altar. "Was, then, all wood allowed for preparation?" "Yes, all wood was allowed for the fire of preparation, except that of the olive and that of the vine. But these they preferred,—branches of the fig tree, of the nut, and of the pine."

4. The priests arranged the great fire of preparation eastward, and then made an opening eastward, so that the heads of the inward faggots touched the heap on the altar. And there was a division between the faggots, that the priests might kindle the chips there.

5. The priest chose from the faggots the best figwood to arrange the second fire of preparation for the incense opposite the western horn southwards. He prolonged it from the

p. 245

horn towards the north four cubits, reckoning for five seahs 1 of live coals, and on the Sabbath he reckoned for eight seahs of live coals. As they placed there the two cups of frankincense of the showbread. The members and cauls (of the sacrifices) which were not consumed by the fire overnight, were returned again by the priests to the great fire of preparation. And they kindled both the preparations with fire; and they came down, and entered into the chamber of hewn stone. 2


244:1 Membranes over the fat.

244:2 In the form of an apple.

244:3 A cor was equal, according to the Rabbis, to 44.286 gallons, but Josephus reckons it to have been 86.696 gallons.

245:1 A seah, according to the Rabbis, was 1.4762 gallon.

245:2 Or of "the treasurers."

Next: Chapter III