The Mishnah - A Brief Explaination

The Hebrew root "ShNH" means "to repeat," and refers to memorization by repetition. Mishnah can refer in a general way to the full tradition of the Oral Torah, as formulated by the Rabbis in the first centuries of the Common Era. These traditions could not be written down, but had to be transmitted and learned by word of mouth. [Texts][Rabinnical Works]