ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous daf Bava Metzia 110
BAVA METZIA 109-110 - anonymously dedicated by an Ohev Torah and Marbitz
Torah in Ramat Beit Shemesh, Israel.
(a) In the case of a Sh'tar Mashkanta (de'Sura') in which it was written
years, but not how many, the creditor claimed that they had agreed on three
years, and the debtor said two. At that stage - the creditor promptly ate
(b) The question is who is now believed. Had the creditor not eaten the
fruit - the debtor would definitely have been believed, because he had a
(c) According to Rav Yehudah, the creditor is obligated to pay the debtor
for the third year - because of the debtor's Chezkas Karka. According to Rav
Kahana, he is not - because having already eaten the fruit, he is Muchzak in
(a) In a case in 'ha'Sho'el', where someone rents a bathhouse for twelve
gold Dinrim per annum, at one gold Dinar monthly, and it turns out to be a
leap-year, Rav Nachman rules - that the hirer is obligated to pay thirteen
gold Dinrim, even if he comes to pay at the end of the month.
(b) Despite the fact that Rav Nachman is not sure whether we go after the
first Lashon or the last, he rules like that - because he holds 'Karka
be'Chezkas Ba'alehah Kaymah' (even though the hirer already lived there -
like Rav Yehudah).
(c) To reconcile Rav Kahana (whose opinion is Halachah) with Rav Nachman
(whose opinion is Halachah too) - we attribute the former's ruling to the
fact that the truth will be revealed when the witnesses on the Sh'tar are
called. Consequently, if we were to vindicate the debtor now and then
discover that the creditor was right after all, we will have to go to
Beis-Din to claim the money back, a waste of Beis-Din's time. In Rav
Nachman's case on the other hand, where it is a S'feika de'Dina (whether we
go after the first Lashon or the last), the Safek will remain a Safek even
after we have ruled (so Beis-Din's time is not at stake).
(a) In another case, where the creditor claims that they agreed on five
Dinrim and the debtor says three (which have already passed), when the
debtor asked the creditor to produce his Sh'tar, he replied - that he had
(b) Rav Yehudah believed him - on the basis of a 'Migu', since he could have
claimed that he had bought the field and lost the Sh'tar (and seeing as
three years had elapsed since he received it, he would be believed).
(c) Rav Papa told Rav Ashi that Rav Z'vid and Rav Avira did not agree with
Rav Yehudah. They maintain that we cannot believe the creditor when he
claims that he lost the Sh'tar, even with a 'Migu' - since unlike a Sh'tar
of sale, which only substantiates the sale, *his* Sh'tar authorizes him to
eat the fruit. Consequently, he would not dared to have lost it (in other
words, it is a 'Migu be'Makom Eidim'). He must therefore have hidden it
deliberately (because it went against him).
(a) Ravina asked Rav Ashi on Rav Yehudah from every case of Mashkanta
de'Sura, where theoretically, after three years, the creditor can always
hide the Sh'tar and claim that he purchased the field but had lost the
Sh'tar. How could Chazal institute something on behalf of Reuven that causes
Shimon a loss.
(b) When ...
1. ... Rav Ashi answered that the Rabbanan also instituted that the owner
pays the land-tax and digs the irrigation ditch around the field, he meant -
that since the owner was paying the tax and digging the irrigation ditch,
even if the creditor were to claim that he had purchased the field, he would
not be believed.
(c) If an Aris claims that the owner promised him half the annual produce
and the owner claims, a third, Rav Yehudah believes the owner. According to
Rav Nachman - we follow the local custom (so if the Minhag is to take half,
he takes half).
2. ... Ravina asked Rav Ashi what will happen in a case where for some
reason, there is no tax to pay and no ditch that needs digging, he replied -
in that case, it would be the debtor's own fault (if the creditor claimed
that he had purchased the field, and won it legally) for not making a
Mecha'ah (a declaration that the field was not sold, thereby forcing the
other party to look after his Sh'tar [as will be explained in Bava Basra]).
(a) We try to reconcile the opinions of Rav Yehudah and Rav Nachman - by
establishing the former when the Minhag is to take a third, and the former,
when it is to take a half.
(b) But Rav Mari B'rah de'bas Shmuel cites Abaye who disagrees, and who
holds that, according to Abaye, Rav Yehudah believes the owner even if it is
customary for the Aris to take half - because he has a 'Migu'; he could have
claimed that the Aris is a hired laborer (who would be entitled to no more
than a small wage).
(c) Throughout the Sugya, 'Ne'eman' means - with a Shevu'as Hesses.
(a) We cite a case where the Ba'al-Chov comes to claim a field from his
debtor's Yesomim. The two parties are disputing - who initiated the
improvements to the field; whether it was the debtor (in which case the
Ba'al-Chov would be entitled to claim it), or the Yesomim (in which case he
(b) Rebbi Chanina thought that, seeing as the land belongs to the Yesomim,
the onus of proof lies with the Ba'al-Chov. That old man however, quoted
Rebbi Yochanan as saying - that the onus of proof lies with the Yesomim.
(c) Abaye proves this from a Mishnah in Bava Basra. We learned there that,
if a tree is growing near a pit, assuming that the tree was there first, it
is not necessary to cut it down. If the pit was there first - then the tree
must be cut down, and the owner of the pit is obligated to compensate him.
(a) In a case where a tree is growing within fifty Amos of a town, the Tana
rules that if the town was there first, the owner must cut down the tree and
does not receive compensation. If the tree was there first - he is still
obligated to cut it down, and the residents of the town are obligated to
(b) If there is a Safek as to which was there first, the Tana rules in the
case of a tree near a pit - that the owner is not obligated to cut down the
tree, whereas in the case of a tree near a town - he rules that he is, and
what's more, he does not receive compensation ...
(c) ... because - once he is definitely obligated to cut down the tree, we
consider the tree to be already cut down, and the onus is on him to prove
that his tree was there first in order to receive compensation.
(d) Similarly, in the previous case (of the Ba'al Chov who is claiming the
Sh'vach from the Yesomim) - since the Yesomim are anyway obligated to give
the Ba'al-Chov the Sh'vach, it is considered as if they had already given
it; and now that they come to claim the money, the onus is on them to prove
that they initiated the improvements to the field, which is precisely what
Rebbi Yochanan ruled.
(a) In the event that the Yesomim succeed in proving that they initiated the
improvements, Rav Chanina initially thought that they are entitled to claim
(b) We refute this however, on the basis of a statement of Rav Nachman Amar
Shmuel. He is speaking about 'Bechor le'Pashut, Ba'al-Chov le'Loke'ach and
Ba'al-Chov u'Kesuvas Ishah li'Yesomim' - who are all paying back Sh'vach.
(c) Rav Nachman rules - that all three may compensate the their respective
claimants with money, if they so wish (because it is not fair to force the
three owners concerned to pay in land as long as they have money).
(d) The case of 'Bechor le'Pashut' is - when the Bechor received a double
portion of inherited land which he and the Pashut improved jointly. However,
since he is not entitled to a double portion of the Sh'vach (since it was
not part of his father's inheritance), he is obligated to return half.
(a) Shmuel appears to hold that the Ba'al-Chov must return the Sh'vach to
the purchaser. We reconcile this with his own ruling that the Ba'al-Chov is
entitled to claim the Sh'vach - by establishing the latter ruling by Sh'vach
sh'Ein Magi'a li'Kesafim (which is still firmly attached to the ground), and
the former, by Sh'vach ha'Magi'a li'Kesafim (which is ripe and hardly needs
the ground any more)?
(b) 'Sh'vach ha'Magi'a li'Kesafim' cannot be defined as fruit that no longer
need the ground at all - because then it would no longer be called Sh'vach,
but Peiros, to which the Ba'al-Chov is not entitled.
(c) Shmuel authorized the Ba'al-Chov to claim even 'Sh'vach ha'Magi'a
li'Kesafim' - in cases where the debt being claimed by the Ba'al-Chov was
equivalent to the field plus the Sh'vach.
(a) We ask a Kashya on Rav Nachman (who permits the Ba'al-Chov to pay the
back money), from those who permit a purchaser to pay the Ba'al-Chov money
in the first place. The reasoning that renders the ruling plausible
according to those who forbid it - is because it is clear that the field
belongs totally to the Ba'al-Chov, and the purchaser had it in his
(b) The gist of the Kashya is - that seeing as the purchaser could have
forced the Ba'al-Chov to accept money in the first (an indication that the
field was not totally his, now that the Ba'al-Chov was obligated to return
the Sh'vach, why could he not insist on being paid in land)?
(c) We therefore establish the ruling - where the debtor designated this
field as an Apotiki (which means that he specifically declared 'Lo Yehei
Lach Pera'on Ela mi'Zu'), in which case everybody will agree that the field
belongs totally to the Ba'al-Chov.
(a) Our Mishnah rules that if someone is Mekabel a field for a Shavu'a (a
cycle of seven years) for seven hundred Zuz - the Sh'mitah year is included;
whereas if he is Mekabel it for seven years - it is not?
(b) If a day-laborer may claim all night, the time for ...
1. ... a night-laborer to claim is - all day.
(c) A laborer who is hired for a week, a month, a year or seven years
claim - claims for the remainder of the day, if his work terminates in the
day, and for the remainder of the night if his work terminates in the night?
2. ... a laborer who works only half a day - the remainder of the day and
the following night (though the interpretation of this ruling is subject to
a Machlokes in the Sugya.
(a) The Tana of the Beraisa learn from the Pasuk ...
1. ... "Lo Salin Pe'ulas Sachir Itcha ad Boker" - that a day-worker has the
following night until daybreak to claim his wages.
(b) The relevance of the latter ruling to our Sugya is because without it -
we might have thought "Lo Salin ... " refers to a night worker, and
"be'Yomo Titen Secharo" to a day-worker.
2. ... "be'Yomo Titen Secharo" - that a night-worker has the following day
until nightfall to claim.
3. ... "ki'Sechir Shanah be'Shanah" - that a laborer's wages only fall due
when his contract ends.
(c) Having written "Lo Salin ... ", the Torah nevertheless needs to add "ad
Boker", to teach us - that once the following day (or night has passed, the
hirer is no longer subject to that La'av (or Asei).
(d) From the Pasuk "Al Tomar le'Re'acha Lech va'Shov, u'Machar Eten, ve'Yesh
Itcha" we learn - that he is nevertheless subject to 'bal Tashheh' (not to
delay payment of the hirer's wages).
(a) The Tana of a Beraisa rules that if Reuven hires a laborer to work for
him, but then takes him to work on Shimon's property - he has to pay him in
full, before claiming from the owner whatever benefit he received from the
(b) And we establish another Beraisa, which states that if Reuven hires a
laborer to work for Shimon, neither of them is subject to "Lo Salin" - when
he specifically told the laborer that Shimon would pay his wages.
(c) The reasoning behind this latter ruling is - because the one did not
hire him (so the laborer is not literally his "Sachir"), and he is not
working on behalf of the other (so we cannot apply "Pe'ulas Sachir Itcha").
(d) When Ameimar or Mar Zutra wanted to hire a laborer, he would ask the
other one to hire him on his behalf.