Shammai shä´mī [key], c.50 BC–c.AD 30, Jewish sage known for his opposition to the liberal teachings of Hillel . He and his school interpreted the Law extremely rigorously, emphasizing deed rather than intent. The conflict between the schools of Shammai and Hillel continued long after their leaders' deaths, with the school of Hillel gaining ascendancy after AD 70. However, a number of Shammai's decisions were adopted by all as authoritative.
See L. Ginzberg, On Jewish Law and Lore (1955).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
See more Encyclopedia articles on: Judaism: Biographies