YALTA


YALTA (fourth century C.E.), wife of Naḥman (d. 320) and daughter of the Exilarch (Kid. 70a). When Naḥman entertained prominent scholars he would ask them to send her their greetings. On one occasion he asked Rav Judah, a prominent contemporary, who was visiting him on a legal matter, to send her greetings. Judah objected, however, quoting successive statements in the name of Samuel as to the impropriety of having associations with women. Yalta thereupon sent a message to her husband: "Settle his case before he makes you appear like any ignoramus" (ibid., 70a–b). On another occasion, when her husband was entertaining *Ulla, and the latter stubbornly refused to send her any wine of the cup over which he had recited a blessing, she reportedly broke 400 jars of wine in her anger (Ber. 51b). She also apparently had a sharp tongue, and commented on his refusal, "Gossip comes from peddlers and vermin from rags," i.e., what can you expect from a man like that? (ibid.). When dissatisfied with the ruling of one rabbi she appealed to another, apparently concealing from him the fact that she had already consulted one (Nid. 20b). She once said to her husband, "The Torah has permitted something of a similar taste for everything it has forbidden; I would like to eat meat in milk," whereupon he told the butcher to give her roasted udder (Ḥul. 109b).

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

Hyman, Toledot, 757f.

[Harry Freedman]


Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.