Halacha literature developed directly from the gemara. Right from the start, it only sought to explain and simplify the halachos that were already decided in the gemara. Naturally, it achieved this goal not by launching an original inquiry, but by tracing the vicissitudes through which the gemara reached its psak - its halachic decision. This tendency (in addition to later decisions on contemporary topics, amalgamated in time to the halachic corpus) made halachic literature branch out and develop into a rich field, itself requiring careful scrutiny.   read more