Originally published in the Jewish Law Annual 10 (1992), pp. 291-2.
Betsel ha-Hokhmah, by B. Stern, 6 Parts in Three Vols., new ed. (Jerusalem, 1990). — Most of these Responsa deal with questions to which modern life gives rise. I, 3: compensation to the victim of an assault who brought further disability on himself through disobeying the doctor’s orders; II, 58: should the doctor tell a patient that his illness is terminal?; II, 73: should a man who had two wives be buried next to the first or the second?; II, 79, a Jew who lives in the Diaspora has a court case with an Israeli — should he attend the court when it sits on the second day of the Festival (kept in the Diaspora but not in Israel)? There are many other Responsa in this collection of similar questions of Israeli-Diaspora relations: III, 23: circumstantial evidence can be relied on for the purpose of interpreting the intention of a testator where his will is ambiguous; IV, 37: when can the Jewish court grant permission for a Jew to bring his case before the civil courts?; IV, 84: can the wishes of an author be disregarded for the benefit of the community when he leaves in his will that his writings should not be published?; V, 81: if a man has an irremovable tatoo of a naked woman on his left arm on the place of the tefillin, what is he to do?; V, 114: if a declared bankrupt later acquires wealth, is he legally obliged to pay his creditors in full?; VI, 113: if a man vowed never to sell a certain object, may he give it away as a gift? At the end of volume three there is an Index to all six parts which makes the book a useful compendium of practical Jewish law. L.J.