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General Style

  1. The Piskei Rosh are essentially summaries of the Tosafot on the Daf, so each can be used to complement the other in terms of understanding and drive. Where Tosafot is vague and the Rosh is clear or vice versa, one can rely on the clearer explanation to be a worthy interpretation of the vague one's words. Often times, the Rosh does not deviate from their position.[1]
  2. The Rosh primarily focuses on Sevarot accepted leHalacha and ignores those that are not. According to the Kenesset HaGedolah, if he presents two positions without deciding, it's because he's unsure which should be accepted.[2] Sometimes, he'll present two interpretations, because he thinks they're both true.[3] As such, his position will be vague, so we can logically infer he follows the majority of Poskim. Additionally, his son, R' Yaakov, author of the the Tur, has the credibility to tell us what his father's position was in practice.[4]
  3. The Rosh mainly is drawn after the Rif except perhaps by explanations of Mishnayot, in which case he often prefers the Rash's understanding.[5]
  4. The Rambam's understanding of Im Timtzi Lomar as Halacha is not accepted by the Rosh, who posits that even those who accept it must admit that further levels are only accepted if they are consistent with the positions of the previous ones.[6] Bach argues that Rosh will agree that when presented with four questions, two of which are Im Timtzi Lomar, that their standing out indicates the Gemara is following them.[7]
  5. An additional answer or through will be introduced with merely a "Vav," such as "וקמשמע לן" - and we also learn.[8]
  6. If an elucidation of the Gemara is not presented by the Rosh against Rashi, we assume he agrees with Rashi.[9]
  7. The breakup of Shu"t HaRosh into Klalim was done by later individuals, not the Rosh.[10]


  1. Just as Ein Seder LaMishnah in the days of Tannaim, meaning they didn't compile Shas in the order it now exists in, so, too, Rishonim didn't necessarily learn and write on Shas in order. It's therefore possible for an initial position to be written in a commentary to a later Masechet and the retracted corrected one to be presented in an earlier Masechet. This knowledge allows us to resolve difficulties in the Rosh and other Rishonim.[11]
  2. Given two contradictory statements in the Piskei HaRosh, some Poskim recommend following the one that fits with the Rif, but according to the Shach, if one is just an instance of parroting the Rif and the other is the Rosh speaking for himself, the latter should be followed.[12]
  3. In general, if the Rosh quotes the Rif last, it means he accepts the Rif's position.[13]
  4. To resolve contradictions between the Piskei HaRosh and Shu"t HaRosh, the Tur[14] and his brother Rabbeinu Yehudah ben HaRosh[15] say and the Bach[16] postulates that the Piskei HaRosh were written later, so they should be followed over the Teshuvot. The Beit Yosef[17] disagrees.[18] The Maharil[19] argues the Teshuvot should be followed, because they were formulated in the context of Horaah.[20] The Kenesset HaGedolah writes how even according to the former view, if the conflicting Teshuva is based on additional, seemingly seen afterwards, sources, then we would follow the Teshuvah.[21] Rav Yosef Yedid HaLevi adds that these rules are only applicable when it's an explicit contradiction, if not we rather reconcile the two.[22]


  1. Many testify to the grand acceptance of the Rosh throughout Spain, which the Kenesset HaGedolah argues is true even over the Rambam and Riaz. Meanwhile, the Radbaz recommends to at least follow the Rosh whenever the Rambam is unclear. He adds that the Halacha follows the Rosh against the Rashba, as the former came later.[23]


  1. The Rosh's son, R' Yaakov, author of the Tur summarized his father's Pesakim in the "Kitzur Piskei HaRosh"[24] and his father's Teshuvot in "Kitzur Teshuvot HaRosh."[25]
  2. Uncharacteristically, the Rosh on Bava Kamma does not quote all the Gemaras and Piskei Dinim, but, rather, quotes the Gemara concisely when needed to discuss a novel idea.[26]
  3. Sometimes, the Hagahot Ashri on the Rosh is commenting on the Gemara itself, not the Rosh, and may even be disagreeing with him.[27]


  1. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 30), see Matnat Yado fn. 68 for the list of those who subscribe to this view and the few who claim the Rosh will quote Tosafot even though he doesn't agree with them.
  2. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 33)
  3. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 43)
  4. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 38)
  5. Yad Malachi (Klalei Rosh 28, 31). See Matnat Yado fn 62 who adds that there's a discussion regarding when the Rif is a Da'at Yachid if we should assume the Rosh still stands with him or of we should count the Rosh with those who disagree. There's also a general issue of how the Rosh originally wrote his Pesakim, as a commentary on the Rif with the direct quotes added in later (Tekafo Kohen 46, Korban Netanel (Klalim 2)) or like we have it (Shem HaGedolim HaRosh). Sdei Chemed (Klalei HaPoskim 11:2) points out how the Chatam Sofer did not have the Shem HaGedolim to be aware of this approach. See Yad Malachi (Klalei HaTalmud 510, 517) and "Contradictions" below.
  6. Korban Netanel (Klalim 9, 10). See Beit Shmuel 137:6 and Pitchei Teshuva (Even HaEzer 137:8) and the sources they cite on this matter.
  7. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 35)
  8. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 39)
  9. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 42)
  10. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 44)
  11. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 34)
  12. See Shulchan Aruch Yoreh De'ah 15 and commentaries at length and above discussion from Tekafot Kohen. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaTalmud 410, Klalei HaRosh 29)
  13. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaTalmud 423)
  14. Tur Choshen Mishpat 72
  15. Beit Yosef Yoreh Deah 341 and Choshen Mishpat 110. In the former case, the Rosh (as related by the Tur Yoreh Deah ibid and in Shu"t HaRosh 27:1) had not yet decided against his Rebbe, the Maharam to not recite Havdala after spending Motzaei Shabbat in Aninut, even though in his Pesakim he did eventually disagree.
  16. Bach Yoreh Deah 334:10
  17. Beit Yosef Yoreh Deah 201 s.v. Aval Rabbeinu. See Derishah Yoreh Deah 334:9 who disputes this position
  18. See Beit Yosef Orach Chaim 12, Shu"t Beit Yosef Even HaEzer Siman 2, and Maggid Meisharim (Parashat Vayakhel, Rosh Chodesh Nissan 296) where he actually writes to follow the Pesakim and not the Teshuvot, unless it's clear that the individual Teshuvah was written later. See also Shu"T Maharanach Siman 46 and Shu"t Meishiv Davar vol. 1 Siman 24. Yalkut Mefarshim on Yad Malachi ad loc
  19. Shu"t Maharil Siman 77
  20. Korban Netanel (Klalim 18). See sources cited in Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 46) and Matnat Yado ad loc at length.
  21. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 37)
  22. Vayechi Yosef Gittin page 67 col. 3, Matnat Yado fn. 93, see Yad Malachi (Klalei Rosh 40) who writes similarly in the name of the Bach.
  23. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 36), Shem HaGedolim (Gedolim, Aleph 236)
  24. Shem HaGedolim (Gedolim, Yud 208; Sefarim, Kuf 87)
  25. Shem HaGedolim (Sefarim, Kuf 97) -R' Moshe de Broshlaish also condensed the Teshuvot.
  26. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 41)
  27. Yad Malachi (Klalei HaRosh 45)