mid·rash \ˈmi-ˌdräsh\ (plural mid·rash·im)
Origin: Hebrew midhrāsh “exposition” or “explanation.” First known use, 1613.
- An early Jewish interpretation of or commentary on a Biblical text, clarifying or expounding a point of law or developing or illustrating a moral principle.
- When capitalized, a collection of such interpretations or commentaries, especially those written in the first ten centuries CE.
The earliest Midrashim come from the 2nd Century CE, although much of their content is older.
For more information see Wikipedia.