סקר
לקראת סיום מסכת עירובין






 

Steinsaltz

From the fact that he stated that four or five animals may always be purchased, conclude from it that Rabbi Yehuda’s statement is referring to the latter clause, and his statement is a leniency. The Gemara affirms: Conclude from it that Rabbi Yehuda intended his statement as a leniency.

§ The mishna teaches: And similarly, one may not purchase wood and produce from produce watchmen. The Gemara relates that Rav purchased grapevine branches from a sharecropper. Abaye said to him: But didn’t we learn in the mishna: And similarly, one may not purchase wood and produce from produce watchmen? The same halakha should apply with regard to a sharecropper, who, like a watchman, is not the owner of the produce. Rav said to him: This statement applies only with regard to a watchman, as he has no share at all in the land itself. But with regard to a sharecropper, who does have a share in it, say: He is selling merchandise from his own share of the land. Since it is plausible that the sharecropper is selling his own property, it is permitted to buy it from him.

The Gemara cites a baraita which discusses purchasing items from watchmen: The Sages taught (Tosefta 11:8): With regard to produce watchmen, one may purchase produce from them when they are sitting and selling the produce, and the baskets are before them and the scales [veturtanei] are before them, as in these circumstances it is reasonable to assume that they are not selling stolen merchandise. But in all cases where they said to the buyer: Conceal your purchase, it is prohibited to purchase from them, as there is good reason to suspect that the merchandise is stolen. The baraita adds: One may purchase from a watchman from the entrance of the garden, but not from the back of the garden, because if the produce is being sold inconspicuously, there is a concern that it might have been stolen.

§ Having discussed the halakha pertaining to suspected theft, the Gemara proceeds to examine the halakha pertaining to purchasing items from a known robber. It was stated: With regard to a robber, from when is it permitted to purchase items from him? Rav says: It is prohibited until the majority of his possessions are from his own property, i.e., property that he obtained legally. And Shmuel says: It is permitted to purchase items from a known robber even if only a minority of his possessions are from his own property.

The Gemara notes that Rav Yehuda instructed Adda, his attendant, in accordance with the statement of the one who says: It is permitted to purchase items from a known robber even if only a minority of his possessions are from his own property, i.e., in accordance with the opinion of Shmuel.

With regard to the property of an informer, i.e., one who informs gentiles of the whereabouts of another’s property, facilitating its theft or misuse, there is a dispute between Rav Huna and Rav Yehuda. One says: It is permitted to physically destroy it, and one says: It is prohibited to physically destroy it.

The Gemara elaborates: The rationale of the one who says that it is permitted to physically destroy it is that an informer’s property should not be subject to a more stringent halakha than his body. Since it is permitted to physically harm or even kill an informer, it would be unreasonable to prohibit the destruction of his property. And the rationale of the one who says that it is prohibited to physically destroy it is that perhaps he will have good children, and it is written: The wicked may prepare it, but the just shall put it on (see Job 27:17).

The Gemara relates that Rav Ḥisda had a certain sharecropper who would weigh the field’s produce and give Rav Ḥisda his portion, and weigh the produce and take his own portion. Rav Ḥisda dismissed him, and read the following verse about him: “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s chil-dren; and the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the righteous” (Proverbs 13:22).

§ The Gemara examines various verses pertaining to robbers. “For what is the hope of the godless, though he profits, when God takes away his soul?” (Job 27:8). This verse is the subject of a dispute between Rav Huna and Rav Ḥisda. One says that the phrase “God takes away his soul” is referring to the soul of the robbed, and one says that it is referring to the soul of the robber.

The Gemara elaborates: The rationale of the one who says that the verse is referring to the soul of the robbed is as it is written: “So are the ways of every one that is greedy for profit; it takes away the life of the owner thereof” (Proverbs 1:19), which teaches that one who robs another of his property is considered as one who robbed him of his soul. And the rationale of the one who says that it is referring to the soul of the robber is as it is written: “Rob not the weak, because he is weak, neither crush the poor in the gate; for the Lord will plead their cause, and despoil of life those that despoil them” (Proverbs 22:22–23).

The Gemara questions each opinion: And according to the other opinion, i.e., the latter one, isn’t it also written: “It takes away the life of the owner thereof,” which indicates that the soul of the robbed is taken? The Gemara answers: What is the meaning of the phrase “the owner thereof”? It is referring to its current owner, i.e., the robber, who has acquired the stolen item.

And according to the other opinion, who said that the life of the robbed is taken, isn’t it also written: “And despoil of life those that despoil them,” which indicates that the soul of the robber is taken? The Gemara answers that the verse is saying: What is the reason. The verse teaches: What is the reason that God will despoil the life of those who despoil them? It is because they despoiled the soul of their victims.

Rabbi Yoḥanan says: Anyone who robs another of an item worth one peruta is considered as though he takes his soul from him, as it is stated: “So are the ways of every one that is greedy for profit; it takes away the life of the owner thereof” (Proverbs 1:19). And it states: “And they shall consume your harvest, and your bread, they shall consume your sons and your daughters” (Jeremiah 5:17). Since they will consume the harvest and bread, it is as though they consume one’s children as well because there will be no food to feed them.

And it states: “Egypt shall be a desolation, and Edom shall be a desolate wilderness, for the extortion of the children of Judah, because they have shed innocent blood in their land” (Joel 4:19). The verse here considers extortion like the shedding of innocent blood. And it states with regard to a famine: “And the Lord said: It is for Saul, and for his bloody house, because he put to death the Gibeonites” (II Samuel 21:1).

The Gemara asks: Since Rabbi Yoḥanan’s point was proven by the first verse, what was the purpose of adding each subsequent verse by saying: And it states? The Gemara answers: And if you would say that the robber takes only his, i.e., the victim’s, life, but the lives of his sons and daughters are not taken, come and hear the second verse, which mentions the flesh of his sons and daughters.

And if you would say: This matter applies only where the robber does not give his victim compensation for the stolen item, but where he gave compensation for the stolen item, it is not comparable to murder, come and hear the verse: “For the extortion of the children of Judah, because they have shed innocent blood in their land.” Extortion is referring to coercing someone to sell an item that he does not want to sell. It is a form of robbery, and the verse equates it with murder.

And if you would say: This matter applies only where he committed the robbery by direct action, but if he committed it through indirect action, the transgression is not as severe, come and hear the verse: “It is for Saul, and for his bloody house, because he put to death the Gibeonites.” And where did we ever find that Saul killed the Gibeonites? He did not do so. Rather, due to the fact that he killed the residents of Nob, the city of the priests, who would provide the Gibeonites with water (see I Samuel, chapter 22) and food, the verse ascribes him blame for their death as though he had killed the Gibeonites himself.

§ The mishna teaches: But one may purchase specific goods from women in certain places. The Sages taught in a baraita (Tosefta 11:5): One may purchase from women woolen goods in Judea, and linen goods in the Galilee, but not wines, oils, and flours, as these are not usually sold by women and there is a concern that perhaps the women stole them from their husbands. And no items may be purchased from slaves, or from children. Abba Shaul says: A woman may sell items for up to four and five dinars in order to make a cap [kippa] for her head, as it is assumed that her husband allows her to sell these items in order to purchase additional articles of clothing. And with regard to all of those cases, where they told the buyer to conceal his purchase, it is prohibited to enter into the transaction.

Charity collectors may take something worth a small amount from women, but not something worth a large amount, as it is possible that they do not have permission to give away expensive items.

And with regard to olive pressers, one may purchase from them olives in a substantial measure, and oil in a substantial measure, as there is no concern that they would steal such a large amount, but not olives in a small amount, and not oil in a small amount. Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel says: One may purchase olives in small amounts from women in the Upper Galilee, where olives are exceptionally expensive, as at times, a person is embarrassed to sell olives at the entrance of his house, and so he gives some olives to his wife, and she sells them. Since there is a reason to presume that the women have been given the right to sell the olives by their husbands, and it is unlikely that the women would sell them without permission, as even a small amount missing would be noticed due to their great value, it may be assumed that the olives are being sold with permission.

The Gemara relates: When Ravina arrived at Bei Meḥoza, the women of Bei Meḥoza came and tossed chains and bracelets before him so that he could distribute the jewelry as charity, and he accepted it from them. Rabba Tosfa’a said to Ravina: But isn’t it taught in the baraita: Charity collectors may accept something worth a small amount from women, but not something worth a large amount? How can you accept jewelry, which is worth a significant sum? Ravina said to him: For the residents of Meḥoza, these chains and bracelets are considered something small, and it is therefore permitted for me to accept them.

MISHNA: Strands of wool that the launderer removes from the garment belong to him, as it can be assumed that the customer is uninterested in them, but strands that the carder, i.e., one who prepares wool for use as a textile, removes belong to the customer, as it is assumed that the customer would want them, since the carder often removes a significant number of strands. A launderer takes three threads that were inserted at the edge of a garment, and they are his, but with regard to more threads than this, these additional threads belong to the customer. If these were black threads on a white garment, he takes all of them and they are his. As the removal of the threads improves the appearance of the garment, the customer does not want them.

In the case of a tailor who left enough thread attached to the cloth that it could be used in order to sew with it, or if there was a patch of cloth that is three fingerbreadths by three fingerbreadths left from the cloth given to the tailor by the customer, these items belong to the customer. That which a carpenter removes with an adze belongs to him, because an adze removes only small shavings of wood, which the customer is uninterested in; but what he removes with an ax [uvakashil] belongs to the customer. And if he was doing his work in the domain of the customer, then even the sawdust belongs to the customer.

GEMARA: The Sages taught in a baraita (Tosefta 11:13): One may purchase strands of wool from a launderer, because they are assumed to be his. A launderer may take the two upper threads of a garment, and they are his.

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)
אדם סלומון
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