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Steinsaltz

The Gemara asks: With regard to the payment made by conspiring witnesses, which is categorized as monetary restitution, as the witnesses pay the precise sum that they conspired to cause the defendant to lose, let Rabbi Oshaya also teach it as one of the categories on his list. The Gemara answers: Rabbi Oshaya holds in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Akiva, who says that conspiring witnesses do not pay on the basis of their own admission. Evidently, theirs is not a payment of monetary restitution; rather, it is a fine, as only one who was found liable based on the testimony of witnesses pays a fine, not one who was found liable based on his own admission.

The Gemara asks: If Rabbi Oshaya holds in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Akiva, let him teach two distinct types of categories of damage under the rubric of Ox: Let him teach one category for an ox that damages an ox or other property belonging to another person, and let him also teach the case of an ox that injures a person.

The Gemara explains its question: As we learned in a mishna (33a): In a case where the two parties damaged each other concurrently, Rabbi Akiva says: The owner of the innocuous ox that injured a person also pays the full cost of the damage with regard to the difference between the damage caused by his ox and the damage that the person caused the ox. Rabbi Akiva holds that if an innocuous ox injures a person, the owner pays the full cost of the damage, whereas if an innocuous ox damages another’s property then the owner is liable only for half the cost of the damage. Since the owner’s liability in the two cases is different, each case should be classified as a distinct category, and Rabbi Oshaya should list them separately in his baraita.

The Gemara answers: Didn’t Rabbi Akiva break the force of his fist [gezizeih], i.e., he significantly tempered the force of his statement, as it is taught in a baraita that Rabbi Akiva says: One might have thought that even in the case of an innocuous ox that injured a person, the owner of the ox would pay from his superior-quality property and not merely from the body of his animal, as in the case of an innocuous ox that damages property; therefore, the verse states with regard to an ox that gores a person: “According to this judgment shall it be done to him” (Exodus 21:31), from which it is derived that the owner of the ox pays restitution exclusively from proceeds of the sale of the body of his ox, and he does not pay from his superior-quality property. The mishna states that one pays restitution from his superior-quality property in instances of all primary categories of damage. Since in the case of an innocuous ox that injured a person even Rabbi Akiva concedes that the owner does not pay from his superior-quality property, it should not be included in a list of the primary categories.

The Gemara asks: As for the rapist, and the seducer, and the defamer, all of which are cases in which the offender pays monetary restitution, let Rabbi Oshaya teach them as categories in his list.

The Gemara explains why Rabbi Oshaya did not teach them as separate categories: Whichever way you look at it, they should not be listed. If the payments listed by Rabbi Ḥiyya are for damage caused to the woman’s body, which reduces her value, he already taught it; if the payments are for pain, he already taught it; if the payments are for humiliation, he already taught it; if the payment is for degradation, that too is a payment for damage, which he already taught. What, then, have you to say? What is the nature of the payments paid by the rapist and the seducer mentioned by Rabbi Ḥiyya? In these cases, each payment paid is considered a fine [kenasa], and as explained, with regard to cases in which one is liable to pay a fine, Rabbi Oshaya does not speak.

The Gemara asks further: And one who causes another’s teruma to become ritually impure, and one who mixes teruma with another’s non-sacred food, and one who pours another’s wine as a libation for idolatry, each of which is a case in which the offender must pay monetary restitution to compensate the owner for his loss due to the lowered value of his food or wine, let Rabbi Oshaya teach them as categories in his list.

The Gemara answers: Whichever way you look at it, these cases should not be listed. If Rabbi Oshaya holds that damage that is not evident, i.e., where the object is physically unchanged but its halakhic status is changed, is characterized as damage for which one is liable to pay restitution, Rabbi Oshaya already taught, i.e., included in his list, restitution for damage, and if he holds that damage that is not evident is not characterized as damage for which one is liable to pay restitution, then it is a fine, and, as explained, with regard to cases for which one is liable to pay a fine, Rabbi Oshaya does not speak.

The Gemara suggests: Since Rabbi Ḥiyya lists these cases as distinct categories, let us say that Rabbi Ḥiyya holds that damage that is not evident is not characterized as damage for which one is liable to pay restitution, as, if it were characterized as damage for which one is liable to pay restitution, didn’t he already teach, i.e., include in his list, restitution for damage? The Gemara rejects that suggestion: Even if he holds that damage that is evident is characterized as damage for which one is liable to pay restitution, he distinguishes between different types of damage. He teaches cases of damage that is evident and he teaches cases of damage that is not evident.

The Gemara considers the fact that each of the lists of primary categories is introduced with the number that they total: Granted, according to the tanna of our mishna, he taught the number of four primary categories in introducing his list to exclude those additional categories of Rabbi Oshaya. And similarly, Rabbi Oshaya taught the number of thirteen primary categories to exclude those additional categories of Rabbi Ḥiyya. But what does the number of twenty-four primary categories of Rabbi Ḥiyya serve to exclude?

The Gemara answers: He taught that number in order to exclude the cases of an informer, who provides information to the authorities leading them to confiscate another person’s property; and to exclude the case of a priest who renders an offering piggul by performing the sacrificial rites for one offering with the intent to sacrifice it for the sake of another offering, in which case the person who brought the offering must replace it with another.

The Gemara asks: And let Rabbi Ḥiyya teach these cases. Granted, he did not include the case of a priest who renders an offering piggul. Perhaps, with regard to cases involving consecrated items, Rabbi Ḥiyya does not speak. But with regard to the case of an informer, what is the reason Rabbi Ḥiyya did not teach it and include it in his list of categories? The Gemara answers: The case of an informer is different, as the damage is caused through speech, and with regard to damage caused through speech, Rabbi Ḥiyya does not speak.

The Gemara asks: But isn’t there the case of a defamer, where the damage is caused through speech, and yet Rabbi Ḥiyya teaches it and includes it in his list? The Gemara answers: He includes that case because it is a case of speech that involves an action. One who defames his wife is liable only if he made his allegation after engaging in intercourse with her.

The Gemara asks: But isn’t the case of conspiring witnesses a case of speech that involves no action, as they are liable for their testimony, and Rabbi Ḥiyya teaches it and includes it in his list? The Gemara answers: There, although it involves no action, the Merciful One characterizes it as an action, as it is written: “And you shall do to him as he conspired to do unto his brother” (Deuteronomy 19:19).

The Gemara considers the subcategories of the various primary categories listed: Granted, according to the tanna of our mishna, his terminology is understandable, as he taught primary categories, which, by inference, means that there are also additional forms of damage that are subcategories of those primary categories. But according to Rabbi Ḥiyya and Rabbi Oshaya, why did they employ the terminology they employed? They employed the term primary categories, which, by inference, means that there are subcategories. What are the subcategories of the primary categories they listed? It appears that they enumerated all the various categories of damage.

Rabbi Abbahu says: When Rabbi Ḥiyya and Rabbi Oshaya characterize, as primary categories, the various categories of damage that they listed, it is not to indicate that there are subcategories; rather, it is to indicate that all of them are characterized as primary categories, in the sense that one is liable to pay from one’s best-quality property.

The Gemara asks: What is the reason for this, i.e., from where is it derived? The Gemara explains: It is derived using a verbal analogy from the terms “in place of,” “giving,” “he shall pay,” and “money.” The term “in place of” is written with regard to a forewarned ox that gores (Exodus 21:36); “he shall give” is written with regard to an ox that kills a slave (Exodus 21:32); “he shall pay” is written with regard to the categories of damage of Eating and Trampling (Exodus 22:4); and “money” is written with regard to Pit (Exodus 21:34). The halakha that one must pay from his best-quality property is stated explicitly in each of those four verses. In each of the twenty-four categories listed by Rabbi Ḥiyya one of those four terms is written, so by means of a verbal analogy, the requirement to pay from one’s best-quality property applies to each of them.

§ The mishna states: The defining characteristic of the primary category of Ox is not similar to the defining characteristic of the primary category of Maveh. The Gemara asks: What is the mishna saying? Rav Zevid said in the name of Rava that this is what the mishna is saying: Let the Merciful One write one of the primary categories and derive the other categories from it. Then the tanna says: It is not possible to derive one category from one other category, as each category has its unique characteristics.

The mishna continues: And the defining characteristics of this category of Ox and that category of Maveh, in which there is a living spirit, are not similar to the defining characteristic of the category of Fire, in which there is no living spirit. The Gemara asks: What is the tanna saying? Rav Mesharshiyya said in the name of Rava that this is what the tanna is saying:

Talmud - Bavli - The William Davidson digital edition of the Koren No=C3=A9 Talmud
with commentary by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz Even-Israel (CC-BY-NC 4.0)
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