I do not agree with Yehezkel Kaufmann, who assumed that awed silence reigned in the Temple. “The distinctive characteristic of the Israelite priestly sanctuary is the sacred silence which reigned within it…. All functions of the priest are carried out in silence without the accompaniment of any utterance, song, or recitation,” conjectured Kaufmann, in Toldot ha-emu-nah ha-yisra’elit II/2 (Tel Aviv: Dvir, 1927), pp. 276–277. In fairness to Kaufmann, it must be said that one ancient source actually does include a reference to “a general silence” among the sacrificing priests. See Letter of Aristeas, sec. 95, in The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha 2, ed. James Charlesworth (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1985), p. 19.