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tanna

[Sephardic Hebrew tah-nah; Ashkenazic Hebrew, English tah-nah] /Sephardic Hebrew tɑˈnɑ; Ashkenazic Hebrew, English ˈtɑ nɑ/
noun, plural tannaim
[Sephardic Hebrew tah-nah-eem; Ashkenazic Hebrew, English tah-nah-im] /Sephardic Hebrew tɑ nɑˈim; Ashkenazic Hebrew, English tɑˈnɑ ɪm/ (Show IPA).
(often initial capital letter) Judaism.
1.
one of a group of Jewish scholars, active in Palestine during the 1st and 2nd centuries a.d., whose teachings are found chiefly in the Mishnah.
Compare amora, sabora.
Origin
< Hebrew tannā teacher
Related forms
tannaitic
[tah-nuh-it-ik] /ˌtɑ nəˈɪt ɪk/ (Show IPA),
adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Encyclopedia Article for tannaim

tana

any of several hundred Jewish scholars who, over a period of some 200 years, compiled oral traditions related to religious law. Most tannaim lived and worked in Palestine. Their work was given final form early in the 3rd century AD by Judah ha-Nasi, whose codification of oral laws became known as the Mishna (q.v.). Some scholars believe the Mishna was committed to writing at this time, while others believe it was preserved solely by memory for another three or four centuries.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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