סקר
האם אתה לומד עם גמרא מפורשת/מבוארת?






 

Steinsaltz

There are two scenarios in which the baraita could be interpreted as referring to an innocuous ox. If one wants to interpret it in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yehuda, it can be discussing a case where he provided reduced safeguarding for it and did not provide superior safeguarding for it. If one wants to interpret it in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Eliezer ben Ya’akov, it can be discussing a case where he did not provide safeguarding for it at all.

As it is taught in a baraita: Rabbi Eliezer ben Ya’akov says: With regard to both an innocuous ox and a forewarned ox whose owner provided reduced safeguarding for them, he is exempt. The owner is liable only if he did not safeguard them at all. And accordingly, Rabbi Ya’akov teaches us this, that the court appoints stewards for the owners of an innocuous ox to enable the injured party to collect damages from the proceeds of the sale of its body.

Ravina said to him that this is what Rava was saying by interpreting Rabbi Ya’akov’s statement with regard to a forewarned ox: Rabbi Ya’akov stated one matter containing two elements of reasoning [ta’ama] in accordance with Rabbi Yehuda’s opinion, namely, that a forewarned ox retains its element of innocuousness, and that reduced safeguarding is sufficient for a forewarned ox.

Ravina himself said a different explanation of the baraita: The practical difference between Rabbi Yehuda and Rabbi Ya’akov is with regard to whether a change of custody changes the status of the ox. For example, in a case where the ox was forewarned while in the custody of the steward and subsequently the deaf-mute regained his hearing, or the imbecile became halakhically competent, or the minor reached majority, and the ox returned to its owner’s custody. Rabbi Yehuda holds that it is still in its previous status, the change of custody notwithstanding, and that therefore the owner is liable for the full cost of the damage. By contrast, Rabbi Ya’akov holds that the change of custody changes the status of the ox, which reverts to innocuousness, and so the owner pays only half the cost of the damage.

§ The Sages taught in a baraita: Stewards are liable to pay from their superior-quality property for damage caused by forewarned oxen under their custody, but they do not pay a ransom if the oxen killed a person.

The Gemara asks: Who is the tanna who taught that the purpose of ransom is atonement for the owner of the ox, and that therefore a minor orphan’s steward is exempt from liability to pay it, as orphans are not subject to the obligation of atonement since they are not morally responsible?

Rav Ḥisda said: It is Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yoḥanan ben Beroka. As it is taught in a baraita: The verse: “If a ransom is imposed upon him, then he shall give for the redemption of his life” (Exodus 21:30), is referring to the monetary value of the injured party. Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yoḥanan ben Beroka, says: The ransom corresponds to the monetary value of the one liable for the damage.

What, do they not disagree with regard to this very issue? In other words, the Rabbis hold that ransom is monetary restitution for the damage caused, and therefore the heirs of the victim must be paid the monetary value of the victim. And Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yoḥanan ben Beroka, holds that ransom is atonement for causing the death of a person. Accordingly, the amount of the ransom is the monetary value of the one liable, since, from the perspective of his moral responsibility for the incident, he deserves to pay with his life. Although the court does not impose capital punishment, his atonement is through payment of his own value.

Rav Pappa said: No, it is possible that according to everyone ransom is atonement, and here they disagree with regard to this issue: The Rabbis hold that we evaluate the amount that is appropriate for atonement according to the monetary value of the injured party, and Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yoḥanan ben Beroka, holds that we evaluate it according to the value of the one liable for the damage. All agree that the purpose of the ransom is atonement.

The Gemara elaborates: What is the reasoning of the Rabbis? Imposing is stated in the later verse: “If ransom is imposed upon him” (Exodus 21:30), and imposing is stated in the earlier verse, concerning a person who injures a pregnant woman, causing her to miscarry: “He shall be punished as the husband of the woman shall impose upon him” (Exodus 21:22). This verbal analogy indicates comparison of the two halakhot: Just as there, with regard to compensation for causing miscarriage, the evaluation is according to the monetary value of the injured party, i.e., the fetus, so too here, the ransom is according to the value of the injured party.

And Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yoḥanan ben Beroka, holds that the fact that it is written: “And he shall give for the redemption of his life,” indicates that the ransom is redemption of the life of the ox’s owner, and its amount should accordingly be the owner’s monetary value.

And the Rabbis would respond to this reasoning that indeed, the phrase: “For the redemption of his life,” is written, indicating that the purpose of the ransom is redemption of his life. Nevertheless, when we evaluate the amount he is liable to pay, we evaluate it according to the value of the injured party.

§ Rava was praising Rav Aḥa bar Ya’akov before Rav Naḥman, saying that he is a great man. Rav Naḥman said to him: When he happens to come to you, bring him to visit me.

When Rav Aḥa bar Ya’akov eventually came to him, Rav Naḥman said to him: Ask me something. Rav Aḥa bar Ya’akov asked him: If an ox belonging to two partners kills a person, how do they pay the ransom?

If this partner pays the ransom in full and that partner also pays the ransom in full, it would seem incorrect, as the Merciful One states that one ransom shall be paid, but not two ransoms. If this partner pays half the ransom and that partner pays half the ransom, it would also seem incorrect, as the Merciful One states that a full ransom shall be paid, but not half a ransom.

While Rav Naḥman was sitting and pondering this question, Rav Aḥa bar Ya’akov asked him another question. He said to him: We learned in a mishna: The court repossesses property from those liable to pay their valuations who are delaying their payments. But the court does not repossess property from those liable to bring sin-offerings and guilt-offerings; they are relied upon to bring their offerings of their own initiative, as it is assumed they want to atone for their transgressions (Arakhin 21a). In light of this mishna, what is the halakha with regard to those liable to pay ransom?

Should it be reasoned that since it is atonement, it is similar to the cases of a sin-offering and a guilt-offering, which a person treats seriously, as it is in his interest to achieve atonement, and therefore the court does not need to repossess property from him? Or perhaps it should be reasoned that since he is required to give the ransom to another person, he considers it a financial liability and does not consider it an obligation toward the Most High, and consequently he does not treat it seriously enough; and therefore the court needs to repossess property from him, as he might not pay it.

Alternatively, it could be reasoned that since he himself did not sin but rather it is his property, i.e., his ox, that caused the damage, he does not treat the matter seriously enough, and therefore the court needs to repossess property from him to ensure payment.

Rav Naḥman said to him: Leave me alone. I am still stuck on the first question and have no solution, so you must not raise further difficult questions.

The Sages taught: Even though one who borrows an ox from another is generally responsible for damage that it causes, if he borrowed it on the presumption that it was innocuous and it gored and caused damage, and it was then found to be forewarned, the owner pays half the cost of the damage and the borrower pays half the cost of the damage.

If the ox was rendered forewarned in the house of the borrower, i.e., it gored three times while in his possession, and he was warned in court, and he then returned it to the owner and it subsequently gored, the owner pays half the cost of the damage, as with regard to him it is still considered innocuous, having become forewarned while not in his custody, and the borrower is exempt from paying any compensation, since the ox is no longer in his custody.

The Master said in the baraita: If one borrowed the ox on the presumption that it was innocuous and it was found to be forewarned, the owner pays half the cost of the damage and the borrower pays half the cost of the damage. The Gemara asks: But why should the borrower pay at all? Let him say to the owner: I borrowed an ox; I did not borrow a lion. I did not accept responsibility for safeguarding a forewarned ox, which behaves violently like a lion.

Rav said: Here we are dealing with a case where the borrower was aware at the time he borrowed it that it was a goring ox and liable to cause damage.

The Gemara asks: But if that is the case, let him say to the owner: Even though I knew that it was a goring ox, nevertheless, I borrowed an innocuous ox. I did not intend to borrow a forewarned ox and thereby accept responsibility for safeguarding an ox for which one must pay the full cost of its damage.

The Gemara answers that the borrower is liable because the owner can say to him: Ultimately, even if it was innocuous, you would be required to pay half the damages. Therefore, now too, go pay half the damages.

The Gemara asks: But if that is the case, let the borrower say to the owner: If it was innocuous, the damages would be paid from the proceeds of the sale of the body of the ox, not from my property.

The Gemara answers: The borrower cannot say this, because the owner can say to him: Ultimately, would you not have been required to pay me back the full value of my ox? As a borrower you are obligated to return the ox to me in the same condition that you borrowed it. Even if compensation was collected from the proceeds of its sale you would still have been required to return its full value to me. Therefore, in any event you would effectively be paying for the damage, so you are not losing anything from the fact that the ox is forewarned.

The Gemara asks: But if that is the case, let the borrower say to him:

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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