ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous daf Bava Basra 107
BAVA BASRA 101-108 - Sponsored by a generous grant from an anonymous donor.
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(a) In a case where Reuven and Shimon divided their inheritance, and their
father's creditor came and claimed Reuven's portion, Rav says 'Batlah
Machlokes', and Shmuel says 'Viter'. Rav's ruling is based on the S'vara
that brothers are Yorshin, meaning - that each one receives his own portion,
in which case the obligation to pay their father's debts rests equally on
each one of them. Consequently, in the event that the creditor takes from
one of them, the original division becomes invalid, and they are obligated
to redistribute the property.
(b) The basis for Shmuel's ruling is - that he considers brothers to be (not
Yorshin, but) Lekuchos, as if they had bought the exclusive rights to their
respective portions from each other. Consequently, the one is not
responsible for the other.
(c) Shmuel considers them Lekuchos without Achrayus - because, he assumes,
the doesn't want his portion to be Meshubad to his brother either. 'Achrayus
Ta'us Sofer' (which teaches us that we insert Achrayos in a Sh'tar, even if
it was not stipulated) - is confined to a Sh'tar Mecher, where the purchaser
paid for the field, and doesn't want his money to go 'down the drain'.
(d) Seeing as the basis of their Machlokes is whether 'Yesh B'reirah' (Rav)
or 'Ein B'reirah' (Shmuel), the other ramifications of this Machlokes -
concern whether they need to redistribute the property after each Yovel
(Shmuel) or not (Rav).
(a) Rav Asi is not sure whether brothers are considered Yorshin or Lekuchos.
Consequently - he authorizes Reuven to reclaim a quarter of Shimon's field
(half his claim), either in land or in cash, because, he can argue, that is
what he would have given the creditor, had he claimed his debt from *him*.
(b) Alternatively, we might interpret Rav Asi's Safek to be - whether
brothers are Yorshin, in which case Shimon must pay Reuven half the field in
Karka, or Lekuchos with Achrayus, in which case, he may pay in cash ...
(c) ... and 'Revi'a be'Karka, u'Revi'a be'Ma'os' will then mean - half of
each (to accommodate both opinions).
(d) We reject this explanation however - on the grounds that usually, in a
triple Machlokes of this nature, the third opinion's doubts are based on the
opinions of the first two disputants and is not a third opinion (see also
Tosfos DH 've'Rav'), and remember that Shmuel considers brothers Lekuchos
(a) Rav Papa rules in the above cases (where after they divided their
father's property, a third brother arrived from overseas, or their father's
creditor claimed his debt from one of them) 'Mekamtzin'. This ruling -
considers brothers who inherit Yorshin (like Rav, though Rav holds 'Batlah
(b) But we rule like Ameimar, who follows the opinion of Rav.
(c) Included in Ameimar's ruling is the case - where the brothers erred and
included in the division a field which their father had stolen.
(d) If the father's creditor claims only half of one of the brother's
portion, the Din will be - no different than if he claimed the whole field
(a) The Beraisa discusses a case where the three members of Beis-Din differ
in their assessment of the property that they are assessing. The purpose of
their assessment is - to sell a field belonging to Yesomim in order to feed
the Almanah and her daughters (their mother and sisters).
(b) If two out of the three assess a field at a Manah, and the third
assesses it at two Manah, or vice-versa - we follow the majority opinion.
(c) The source for this ruling is - the Pasuk in Mishpatim "Acharei Rabim
(a) According to the Tana Kama, if one Dayan gives the value as a Manah, the
second as twenty Sela'im and the third as thirty Sela'im, the field is sold
at a Manah, which contains ...
1. ... twenty-five Sela'im.
(b) The Tana Kama's reason is - because on the one hand, the lowest assessor
and the middle assessor agree that the price is not more than a Manah, and
on the other, the highest assessor agrees with the middle assessor that the
price is not less than a Manah, turning both the one who says more and the
one who says less a minority opinion.
2. ... a hundred Dinrim.
(c) If, according to the Tana Kama, the highest assessment is twenty-eight
Sela'im (and not thirty), the Din will remain the same, and the field will
be sold for a Manah.
(a) The basis for Rebbi Eliezer b'Rebbi Tzadok's opinion, that the field is
sold for ninety Dinrim - is that we take the average between the two lowest
assessments and assume that each one erred by ten Dinrim.
(b) We object to this reasoning however. on the grounds that if that were
so - why would we not take the average between the two higher assessments
and say that the field is really worth a hundred and ten Dinrim, and each
one erred by ten Dinrim.
(c) We overrule this objection however - by applying the principle 'Tafasta
Merubah Lo Tafasta' (whenever there is a Safek concerning two figures, we
adopt the lower figure, which is inevitably included in the higher one).
Consequently here, where everyone agrees that the field is worth somewhere
in the vicinity of a Manah, either a little more or a little less, we rather
assume a little less.
(a) When Acherim says 'Osin Shuma Beinehen u'Meshalshin', he means - that
since three assessors argue over a margin of error that spans forty Dinrim
(between eighty and a hundred and twenty Dinrim), we divide the discrepancy
into three (thirteen and a third Dinrim) and add it on to the lowest figure,
to sell the field at ninety-three and a third Dinrim.
(b) Following the same pattern as Rebbi Eliezer b'Rebbi Tzadok, Acherim
assumes that the two lower assessors will err by thirteen and a third
Dinrim. The reason that the middle assessor did not price the field at a
hundred and six and two thirds Dinrim (thirteen and a third Dinrim more that
the real price) is - because he did not want to differ too much with the
lower assessor (settling for a nice round Manah).
(c) We object to this however, (as we objected to Rebbi b'Rebbi Tzadok) -
inasmuch as we ought then to assume the field to be worth a hundred and
thirteen and a third, and the middle assessor erred by thirteen and a third
Dinrim, and it is the higher assessor who really ought to have added
thirteen and a third Dinrim more than the real price (and settles for thirty
(d) We overrule the objection however, as we overruled the previous one - by
applying the principle 'Tafasta Merubah Lo Tafasta ... '.
(a) The Tana Kama argues with the other two Tana'im - in that he prefers to
render one of the assessors correct, even if it means widening the margin of
error between each of the two assessors.
(b) Rav Ashi objected when Rav Huna ruled like Acherim - because, if his
reasoning is not logical, how can we rule like him?
(c) Rav Ashi would have ruled like - the Tana Kama.
(d) Rav Ashi made the same comment when Rav Huna ruled like Daynei Golah
(Shmuel and Karna). We do not query Rav Huna's need to issue two identical
rulings - because it is obvious that Rav Huna really only issued one ruling,
only we assume that he would have ruled the same with regard to the other,
and Rav Ashi's objection would pertain equally.
(a) Our Mishnah discusses a case where Reuven sells Shimon half a field. He
is obligated to build a wall around Shimon's newly-acquired property, and to
build a Charitz (a ditch) and a ben Charitz - which is a small ditch that
precedes the large one.
(b) The respective sizes of a Charitz and a ben Charitz - are six and three
Tefachim wide respectively.
(c) The Tana teaches us this Halachah particularly in the case of where he
sold him half a field - because in a case where he sold a field, he sells
it as is, and there is nothing to add.
(a) When Rebbi Chiya bar Aba Amar Rebbi Yochanan says that the purchaser
receives the weakest part of the field, he means - that the owner has the
choice of giving him his half from whichever part of the field he chooses,
because the purchaser always has the underhand.
(b) When Rebbi Chiya bar Aba asked Rebbi Yochanan why the Mishnah then says
'Meshamnin Beinehen', he introduced his retort with the words 'a'de'Achlas
Kafneyasa be'Bavel ... ', by which he meant - that the questioner had spent
too much time in Bavel (from where he came) eating dates and general
self-indulgence, instead of studying Torah diligently (though he had in the
meantime become one of his star Talmidim).
(c) Rebbi Yochanan did not answer his question directly, but quoted him the
Seifa of our Mishnah, which concludes 've'Notel Chetzyah be'Darom' (though
there too, the Tana just said 'Meshamnin Beinehen') to prove that he was
right, because having stipulated 'Chetzyah be'Darom', if we take the Mishnah
literally, what sense does 'Meshamnin Beineihen' make.
(a) The Seifa is coming to teach us that if Reuven promised Shimon half his
field in the south, he must give him half the value of the southern half of
his field, in whichever part of the field he wishes.
(b) 'Meshamnin Beinehen' means - that the best will be between the two
parties, which means practically that the onus lies with the claimant to
prove that he has a right to it.
(a) The purpose of ...
***** Hadran Alach Beis Kur *****
1. ... the ditches is - to stop wild animals from entering the field.
(b) The distance between the ben Charitz and the Charitz is - one Tefach.
2. ... the ben Charitz is - to prevent them from jumping into the ditch
(which is wide enough for them to jump into, move to the back and take a
running jump into the field.
3. ... the Charitz is - to prevent them from simply jumping over the ben
Charitz into the field.