Wednesday, January 01, 2020

The Siyum Hashas of Daf Yomi - 89 Years of History

Watch and learn of the rich history of the Siyum Hashas of Daf Yomi, going back to the very first Siyum during 1931 in Lublin, all the way through to the 12th Siyum in 2012. Today, history will be made once again, with the celebrations of the conclusion of the 13th cycle of Daf HaYomi, Siyum Hashas 2019.

(Click on Full Article to see all the videos)

1st Siyum Hashas | סיום הש"ס - אגודת ישראל - תרצ"א

The 1st Siyum HaShas took place on 2 February 1931 (15 Shevat 5691) in several cities in Europe and in Jerusalem, with the main venue being the newly opened Chachmei Lublin Yeshiva in Lublin, Poland. Tens of thousands of Jews attended these events. Rabbi Meir Shapiro presided over the Siyum in his yeshiva in the presence of many leaders of Polish Jewry. In the United States, Siyums were held in Baltimore and Philadelphia.

2nd Siyum Hashas | סיום הש"ס - אגודת ישראל - תרצ"ח

The 2nd Siyum HaShas was held on 27 June 1938 (28 Sivan 5698). Again the main venue was the Chachmei Lublin Yeshiva, but the founder of that yeshiva and the Daf Yomi program, Rabbi Meir Shapiro, was not present, having died suddenly in 1933 at the age of 46. An estimated 15,000[27] to 20,000[28] Jews came from all over Poland to celebrate the milestone together with many Torah luminaries, including the Rebbes of Boyan-Cracow, Sochatchov, Sadigura, and Modzhitz, Rabbi Menachem Ziemba, and Rabbi Dov Berish Weidenfeld. So many Gedolim were gathered in one place that many halachic queries were sent directly to Lublin. The two-day event culminated with the completion of a Sefer Torah in memory of Shapiro.

In the United States, Siyums were held in Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Brooklyn.

In Mandatory Palestine, organizers planned to hold a Siyum in the Zikhron Meir neighborhood of Bnei Brak (named for Rabbi Meir Shapiro). It was cancelled at the last minute by the British mandatory government, which banned all mass gatherings for fear of "anti-government

4th Siyum Hashas | סיום הש"ס - אגודת ישראל - תשי"ג

The 4th Siyum HaShas on 13 April 1953 (28 Nisan 5713) also had its main venue in Israel. An estimated 10,000 gathered for the main event in Mea Shearim, following local siyums and speeches by leading rabbis in over half a dozen Jerusalem synagogues. Thousands attended the Siyum HaShas in Tel Aviv and danced afterwards at the central bus station. Well-attended Siyums also took place in Bnei Brak, Petah Tikva, Haifa, and Tiberias.

In New York City, the 4th Siyum HaShas was celebrated at the Young Israel of Borough Park, as well as in Bensonhurst, Brownsville, West Side of Manhattan, and the Bronx.

5th Siyum Hashas | סיום הש"ס - אגודת ישראל - תש"ך

The 5th Siyum HaShas took place on 5 September 1960 (13 Elul 5720). In Jerusalem's Kikar HaShabbat, an open-air square at the intersection of the Mea Shearim and Geula neighborhoods, distinguished Torah leaders addressed the thousands of attendees. In Bnei Brak, police estimated an audience of between 12,000 and 15,000 in an outdoor field. Over 5,000 attended the Siyum in Tel Aviv, where Rabbi Yosef Shlomo Kahaneman, the Ponevezher Rav, delivered a hadran that lasted nearly two hours.

In the United States, Rabbi Aharon Kotler presided over the 5th Siyum HaShas at the Zeirei Agudas Yisroel convention in New York. Other Siyums took place in New York City and Baltimore.

7th Siyum Hashas | סיום הש"ס - אגודת ישראל - תשל"ה

Tens of thousands of participants attended the 7th Siyum HaShas in Jerusalem, which was held on 23 June 1975 (14 Tammuz 5735). The event, which took place in the large courtyard of the Bais Yaakov High School, attracted thousands of religious schoolchildren wearing a special Daf Yomi badge, together with their teachers. Three hundred members of the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah were seated on the huge dais. The central celebration in Tel Aviv, again held at the Culture Palace and again featuring numerous choirs, also drew a huge attendance. In Bnei Brak, more than 10,000 people pressed into the Great Synagogue; the doors and some furnishings buckled under the crush of the crowd. After the ceremony and speeches, the crowd spilled out onto Rabbi Akiva Street for dancing. The Siyum was also marked in Netanya, Safed, Ramat Gan, and, for the first time, in Giv'atayim.

In the United States, the 7th Siyum HaShas was held on 15 June 1975 at the Manhattan Center in New York City, drawing an audience of over 5,000.[2][33] At this Siyum, the Council of Torah Sages of Agudath Israel of America permanently dedicated the Siyum HaShas to the memory of the six million Jews murdered during the Holocaust.[32] Other Siyums took place in Philadelphia and Cleveland. Around the world, Siyums were held in England, Belgium, Switzerland, Brazil, and Mexico.

9th Siyum Hashas | סיום הש"ס - אגודת ישראל - תש"ן

At the Agudath Israel of America convention following the 8th Siyum HaShas in New York, Agudah chairman Rabbi Moshe Sherer announced that he wished to book Madison Square Garden for the next Siyum HaShas, to be held on 26 April 1990. Many were skeptical that the stadium, seating 20,000, could be filled, considering that the 8th Siyum HaShas in New York had attracted only 5,000. But Agudath Israel of America went ahead and paid a nonrefundable deposit two and a half years in advance of the Siyum, and attendance met all expectations, with over 20,000 in attendance. Tickets on the main floor, priced at $100 apiece, were sold out for weeks in advance, and the women's section was also sold out. Other Siyums were held in Baltimore, Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, Toronto, Montreal, and Tel Aviv.

Enormous crowds were seen at the 9th Siyum HaShas in Israel's main cities on 24 April 1990 (29 Nisan 5750). These included a Siyum in Tel Aviv at the Yad Eliyahu Arena, a Siyum in Jerusalem in the spacious Bais Yaakov High School courtyard, and a Siyum in Bnei Brak. Special children's Siyums were also held in Jerusalem (with students from 84 Talmud Torahs and schools in attendance) and in Bnei Brak (with 5,000 children together with leading rabbis and educators in attendance).

The 9th Siyum HaShas in London drew a large audience and lasted six hours, followed by a festive meal. Smaller events took place in Manchester, Gateshead, and among local Daf Yomi groups in England. In Melbourne, Australia, home to eight regular Daf Yomi shiurim, the central Siyum HaShas drew 1,000 people.

10th Siyum Hashas | סיום הש"ס - אגודת ישראל - תשנ"ז

The 10th Siyum HaShas in the United States took place on 28 September 1997 at two New York City locations: Madison Square Garden, with an audience of 25,000, and the Nassau Coliseum, with an audience of 20,000. Siyums were also held in Boston, Cleveland, Chicago, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, and Portland, bringing total U.S. participation to 70,000 individuals. Siyums also took place in Toronto, Ontario and Montreal, Quebec in Canada, and Melbourne, Australia.

In Israel, the central Siyum HaShas was held at Tel Aviv's Yad Eliyahu Arena on 28 September 1997 (26 Elul 5757) with thousands in attendance, and was broadcast live to other locations. The honor of starting the new cycle of Daf Yomi went to Rabbi Shmuel Wosner, a student of Rabbi Meir Shapiro, who shared his memories of the second Siyum HaShas in 1931. The Shabbat preceding this Siyum was billed as "Shabbos Daf Yomi", with rabbis calling on Israelis to increase their study of Daf Yomi. Other Siyums were held in battei medrash (study halls) in Jerusalem and Bnei Brak, and in Ramat Vizhnitz in Haifa.

In England, the central Siyum HaShas was held in the Sobel Center in London, drawing thousands of attendees. Over 2,500 attended the seudat mitzvah (celebratory meal) hosted by Agudath Israel in London. Another thousand attended Siyums in Manchester and Gateshead.

11th Siyum Hashas | סיום הש"ס - אגודת ישראל - תשס"ה

An estimated 300,000 people worldwide participated in the 11th Siyum HaShas. The largest celebrations were held on 1 March 2005 in three locations in the New York area: Madison Square Garden, the Continental Airlines Arena in New Jersey, and the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, with a combined 45,000 attendees. Portions of each program were telecast to the other sites and to more than 50 locations countrywide, including the Rosemont Theatre in Chicago, the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, and the Ricoh Coliseum in Toronto. The programs were also broadcast to 20 overseas locations. The honor of reciting the final portion of the final page at the Continental Arena event was given to Rabbi Chaim Stein, rosh yeshiva of the Telshe yeshiva of Wickliffe, Ohio, who was making his ninth personal Siyum HaShas and had participated in each of the ten preceding events, including the first one held

at the Chachmei Lublin Yeshiva in 1931

In Israel, 10,000 tickets prepared for the central Siyum HaShas at Yad Eliyahu Arena in Tel Aviv on 1 March 2005 (20 Adar I, 5765) sold out immediately. The proceedings were viewed by live satellite hookup in Jerusalem, Bnei Brak, and Ashdod. Siyums were also held in Jerusalem at the International Convention Center, in the Zikhron Moshe synagogue, in the Pinsk-Karlin beis medrash, in Kiryat Belz, and at the Erlau yeshiva. An English-language Siyum at the Jerusalem Convention Center was attended by the Rebbes of Boyan, Karlin-Stolin, Kaliv, and Pittsburg, as well as by English-speaking roshei yeshiva Rabbi Nosson Tzvi Finkel, Rabbi Chaim Pinchas Scheinberg, Rabbi Yitzchak Sheiner, and Rabbi Mendel Weinbach. Other Siyums were held in Bnei Brak, Haifa, Ashdod, Netanya, Petah Tikva, Rehovot, Tel Zion, and Kiryat Ata.

The 11th Siyum HaShas was also celebrated by 4,000 people in London, 2,000 people in Manchester, and at events in Antwerp,[40] and Melbourne and Sydney, Australia. The scope of celebrations marking the 11th Siyum HaShas was described in one newspaper account as follows:

Among the cities where Siyums were held were Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Dallas, Detroit, Des Moines, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Lakewood, Miami, Milwaukee, New Orleans, St. Louis, Seattle, Cincinnati, Scranton, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Cleveland, and Chicago.

Siyums were also held in Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Caracas, Venezuela; Sao Paulo, Brazil; Santiago, Chile; Johannesburg, South Africa; Lublin, Poland, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kiev, and Odessa in the Former Soviet Union; Hong Kong, China; and Sydney, Australia.

Coming as it did the day before the yahrzeit of Hasidic master Reb Elimelech of Lizensk, when hundreds traditionally make a pilgrimage to his grave in Leżajsk, Poland, two Siyums were celebrated in Poland, including the first at the Chachmei Lublin Yeshiva since 1931 A large group from Israel traveled to the former beis medrash of the Gerrer Rebbes in Góra Kalwaria. A Siyum HaShas was made in Moscow by the united Jewish communities in Russia under the leadership of Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar.

The 11th Siyum HaShas was also marked by an event for non-Orthodox Jews called Jewish Unity Live 2005. The central venue, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, featured Elie Wiesel, U.S. Senator Joseph Lieberman, and other celebrities; gatherings were also held on college campuses and military bases across the U.S.

12th Siyum Hashas | סיום הש"ס - אגודת ישראל - תשע"ב

The MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, which has seating for 82,500, was the main U.S. venue for the 12th Siyum HaShas on 1 August 2012. An additional 8,500 folding chairs were placed on the playing field, and a dais of approximately 500 seats accommodated Admorim, roshei yeshiva, and distinguished rabbis. An additional section of 1,000 seats was reserved for teachers of Daf Yomi shiurim. All 92,000 seats were sold out.

A total of 2,200 plasma screens were set up inside the stadium and four Jumbotron screens were positioned outside the stadium for overflow attendees. Female attendees, who constituted an estimated 20 percent of the crowd, were seated in the upper deck of the stadium behind a 12-foot (3.7 m) high, 2.5-mile (4.0 km) long mechitza (curtain divider) that was drawn during prayers. Satellite broadcasts and web feeds were piped to over 100 locations, including those in Chicago, Baltimore, Toronto, Montreal, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Uruguay, Buenos Aires, Argentina, Melbourne, Hong Kong, and Lublin, Poland.

For the first time, a Modern Orthodox Siyum HaShas was also held, on 6 August 2012, at Congregation Shearith Israel on Manhattan's Upper West Side. This event featured lectures on various aspects of both the Jerusalem and the Babylonian Talmud, and participation by female Torah scholars.

Tens of thousands attended Siyums in Israel. These included the Dirshu World Siyum at the Yad Eliyahu Arena in Tel Aviv, the National Siyum HaShas in Petah Tikva, a Siyum organized by Agudath Israel and Degel HaTorah in the French Hill neighborhood of Jerusalem, and a Siyum organized by the Shas political party at Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem. There were two English-language Siyums at Jerusalem's International Convention Center, one sponsored by Dirshu on 31 July and one organized by Kollel Iyun Hadaf on 5 August. The various Religious Zionist organizations sponsored a separate siyum at the same Convention Center on 2 August, and there was another English language siyum at Jerusalem's Great Synagogue on 9 August.

A new edition of the Talmud was launched to coincide with the 12th Siyum HaShas by Koren Publishers. Known as the Koren Talmud Bavli, this edition features translation and commentary by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz. The project, slated to be 42 volumes, is overseen by Rabbi Dr. Tzvi Hersh Weinreb who serves as editor-in-chief.

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