About This Text
Composed: Talmudic Israel/Babylon, 750 CE
Tractate Soferim (“Scribes”) is one of the minor tractates, or works written in the style of the Mishnah on topics for which there is no specific tractate in the Mishnah or Talmud. It was likely compiled in the eighth century in Israel, though certain segments are of earlier origin. It discusses the process of writing Torah scrolls, the spelling of biblical words, and the public reading of biblical texts. It ends with two chapters on the rabbinic holidays of Chanukah and Purim. Many medieval legal authorities considered the tractate to be a reliable source of law.