“A Bride for One Night”: A Talmudic Tale by Ruth Calderon

An ancient scroll of Esther (230 years old) which belonged to Rabbi Elimelech of Lizensk (author of Noam Elimelech) and passed from generation to generation. February 13, 2018. Photo by David Cohen/FLASH90 *** Local Caption *** ôåøéí îâéìú àñúø òúé÷ä (áú 230 ùðä) ùäéúä ùééëú ìøáé àìéîìê îìéæòðñ÷ (áòì ðåòí àìéîìê) åòáøä îîðå ãåø ãåø.

In honor of the Purim custom of reading the Book of Esther, this episode features an excerpt from Ruth Calderon’s short story “A Bride for One Night”. It is the title story in her collection of Talmudic tales, published in Ilana Kushan’s English translation in 2014. Calderon has a doctorate in Talmud from Hebrew University and was elected to the Israeli Knesset in January 2013. She is founder and former director of Elul Beit Midrash in Jerusalem and founder and chair of Alma: Home for Hebrew Culture in Tel Aviv.

The story opens with a Talmudic passage:

When Rav would visit the city of Darshish, he would announce: “Who will be mine for a day?” And when Rav Nachman would visit the city of Shachnetziv, he would announce: “Who will be mine for a day?”


Text: Ruth Calderon, A Bride for One Night. Talmudic Tales. Translated by Ilana Kurshan. The Jewish Publication Society, 2014.

Music: משירי ארץ אהבתי“ (לאה גולדברג / דפנה אילת) בביצוע חוה אלברשטיין”

Previous Purim Episodes:

A Perfectly Modern Purim

“Reckless Love”: Poems by Raquel Chalfi

The Guardian State

Photo by David Cohen/FLASH90: An antique scroll of Esther.

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