Talmud comes from the Hebrew word "Lamad" which means (to study or learn). This and the Old Testament are the main religious works of the Jews. The Talmud is a very extensive collection of rabbinical discussions and decisions relating to the Torah over a period of several centuries.
When the work of the first generation of rabbis (the tannaim) was brought to its conclusion in the Mishnah, their task was taken over by the "amoraim" (expounders) who developed practical living standards by determining what was right or wrong. Their annotations to the Mishnah are called the Gemara. Together the Mishnah and the Gemara form the Talmud.
The study of the Talmud is extremely important for a proper understanding of the Old and New Testament. We learn of Jewish customs as well as insight into the thought and idium of the Jewish people.