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Exodus Terumah
  Ki Tisa
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25:12 Cast four gold rings for [the ark], and place them on its four corners, two rings on one side, and two on the other side.
Veyatsakta lo arba tabe'ot zahav venatatah al arba pa'amotav ushtey taba'ot al-tsal'o ha'echat ushtey taba'ot al-tsal'o hashenit.
25:13 Make two carrying poles of acacia wood and cover them with a layer of gold.
Ve'asita vadey atsey shitim vetsipita otam zahav.


  Some say that the rings were cast separately, and then attached to the ark (Ralbag; Abarbanel; cf. Exodus 37:13). According to others, the rings were cast together with the outer shell or welded onto it (Rashbam). Some say that the carrying poles actually went through the walls of the ark, and that these rings were like re-inforcements (Josephus 3:6:5; cf. Bava Bathra 14a).

  (Targum; Radak, Sherashim). Some say that the rings were at the very top of the ark (Rashi). According to others, they were 2 and one third handbreadths (7 inches) from the top of the ark (Shabbath 92a, Rashi ad loc.). Still others state that the rings were at the very bottom of the ark (Ramban; Bachya). According to those who maintain that the ark had legs, the rings were on its feet (Ibn Ezra; Abarbanel).

two rings...
  Thus, the ark had only four rings, one on each corner (Rashi; Rashbam; Lekach Tov; Ralbag; Abarbanel). Others maintain that the ark had eight rings, two on each corner, and translate the verse, 'place [the first four rings] on [the ark's] four corners, and then place [another] two rings on one side, and two on the other' (Tosafoth, Yoma 72a, s.v. Kethiv). According to one opinion, the rings on the corners were to move the ark by hand, while the second set of rings for the poles were on the ark's sides, and not on its corners (Rosh: Tur). Others maintain that each ring affixed to the ark held a second movable ring through which the poles were placed, translating the verse, 'Weld four rings onto the four corners of the ark, and [place in these rings] two rings on one side, and two rings on the other' (Bekhor Shor; Chizzkuni; Or HaChaim). According to the opinion that the ark had legs, the verse would be translated 'place [the first four rings] on [the ark's] four feet, and [place] two rings on one side [of the ark itself], and two rings on the other side,' indicating that the first set of rings was on the ark's feet, and the second set on its sides (Ibn Ezra).

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