The course of reform may now be concisely summarized.
It may be interesting to mention, as an illustration of their heterogeneousness, that early in the 20th century a list of no less than fifty languages, spoken in Jerusalem as vernaculars, was there drawn up by a party of men whose various official positions enabled them to possess accurate information on the subject.1 It is therefore no easy task to write concisely and at the same time with sufficient fullness on the ethnology of Palestine.
The arrangement down to this point is far from strict, and beyond it is almost impossible to describe concisely, though there is still a rough grouping of characters according to resemblance of form, nature or meaning.
These may be tabulated concisely as follows: I.
In both classes, accepted tradition (written or oral) was reinterpreted in order to justify or to deduce new teaching (in its widest sense), to connect the present with a hallowed past, and to be a guide for the future; and the prevalence of this process, the innumerable different examples of its working, and the particular application of the term Midrash to an important section of Rabbinical literature complicates both the study of the subject and any attempt to treat it concisely.'