|The Rabbins deliver, Follow after righteousness, follow after righteousness. Go to (Beth-Din) the famous consistory, to R. Eleazar to Lydda, to Rabban Jochanan Ben Zaccai. A tradition; The sound of mills in Burni. The sons' week, the sons' week. A candle in Beror Chel. A feast is there, a feast is there.|
These things are something obscure, and do require light.
Beror Chel, seems to design a place: but what place? Indeed, the Sanhedrim of R. Jochanan was in Jabneh; but his consistory, his seat of judgment, seems to be distinguished from the Sanhedrim. So Paul was brought up at the feet of Rabban Gamaliel; not in his Sanhedrim, but in his consistory or school. So you may conjecture, that Rabban Jochanan, besides that he sat president of the chief Sanhedrim, had his peculiar consistory in Jabneh itself, or in some neighbour place.
That which follows, |A tradition, the sound of mills,| &c. is cleared by the Glossers: |The sound of mills in Burni was a sign that there was a circumcision there; as if it had been publicly proclaimed, The infant's week expires in this place. And the sound of a mill was a sign that spices were ground to be applied to the wound of the circumcision. It was a time of persecution, wherein it was forbidden to circumcise: they feared, therefore, by any public notice to make known that there was to be a circumcision; but they appointed this sign.|
'A candle in Beror Chel.' -- The Gloss writes, |The light of one candle in the day-time, but many candles burning in the night, gave a sign, as if one had given notice by a public proclamation that a feast of circumcision was there,| &c.
Another Gloss is thus: |They were wont to light candles at a circumcision. It was also a custom to spread a tablecloth at the door: hence is that, A custom prevailed at Jerusalem, that as long as the tablecloth was spread at the door, travellers went in.|
The Aruch writes thus; |In the time of persecution they could not celebrate public matrimony, nor public circumcision; therefore, they did them secretly: wheresoever, therefore, were lighted candles on the lintel of the door, they knew that there was a wedding-feast there; and wheresoever was the sound of mills, there was a circumcision.|
The Jerusalem Talmudists add, |Although the persecution ceased, yet that custom ceased not.|
The Babylonian Talmudists go on. |Go to R. Josua to Pekiin.| In the Jerusalem Talmudists it is Bekiin, in this story that follows:
|R. Jochanan Ben Bruchah, and R. Eliezer the blind, travelled from Jabneh to Lydda, and received R. Josua in Bekiin.|
|Go to Rabban Gamaliel to Jabneh. Go to Rabbi Akiba to Bene Barak. Go to R. Mathia to Roma. Go to R. Chananiah Ben Teradion to Sicni. To R. Jose to Zippor. To R. Judah Ben Betirah to Nisibin. To R. Josua to the captivity (viz. to Pombeditha). To Rabbi to Beth-Shaaraim. To the Wise men in the chamber Gazith.|