Unveiled earlier this month, the Elyonim veTachtonim is the name for the project aimed at reconstructing the comprehensive inventory of the entities of various classes in the early rabbinic literature [ERL]. Since the task is laborious, the sources vast and the human resources scarce, the project expands gradually but slowly.
The database serves the function of a specialized thematic concordance and as such provides the means for a quick localization and juxtaposition of all the appearances of a given entity. Second, the detailed division into separate units allows the introduction of the quantitative methods of analysis, some of which are already published in the “summaries” sheets of the database. Third, the manipulation with the hashtags and filtering commands makes it possible to discern some particular regularities like the correlation between the given entity, topic and genre. This is just a small fraction of the potential applications, and the larger the database the more diverse the purposes.
covers the Babylonian Talmud [BT]; bases on the Soncino Babylonian Talmud (English) and Wikitext Talmud Bavli (Hebrew, Aramaic); distinguishes between three classes of entities: angels [ang], demons [dem] and ghosts [gho]; (more or less) all the units involving dem of the BT are done; these with ang and gho are still in the stub form; distinguishes between six genres: biblical anecdote [bib], rabbinic anecdote [rab], cultic protocol [cult], pragmatic advice [prag], proverb [prov] and statement [stat]; recognizes a number of entities and topics; covers all the attitude types.