The Hebrew term meaning "Repetition." The oral Torah of the Pharisees was not recorded in a set written form before the 2nd c. CE. Instead this body of tradition was preserved primarily through recitation & memorization. Standardization of the form & content of rabbinic tradition became necessary after the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem [70 CE]. For the conscious mission of the rabbinic Academy was not only to preserve but to promote the authority of its interpretation of Torah for Jews everywhere. The Pharisaic principle of consensus was invoked to make the Academy's majority opinions the basis of normative Jewish religious observance. To promote further consensus, rulings were codified by topic & committed to memory by regular repetition. Thus, the leading rabbis of the Academy came to be referred to as the tannaim ["repeaters"].
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