ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous daf Gitin 19
GITIN 19 & 20 - have been anonymously dedicated by a very special Marbitz Torah and
student of the Daf from Ramat Beit Shemesh, Israel.
(a) The Tana of our Mishnah validates all kinds of inks for writing a Get,
specifically mentioning ink, orpiment and Sikra. Rabah bar bar Chanah describes
'Sikra' as - red lead (that is used as a paint).
(b) He also permits Kumus and Kankantum (which Rabah bar bar Chanah Amar Shmuel
describes as vitriol - see Tosfos). 'Kumus' is - sap.
(c) What qualifies ink that is Kasher to write a Get is - its lasting quality.
(d) One may therefore not use - fruit-juice or anything that does not remain.
(a) The Tana validates any surface on which to write a Get, among them an olive leaf
and the horn of a cow or on the hand of a slave.
The latter cases will only be
Kasher - if he presents the woman the cow and the slave.
(b) 'u've'Chol Davar ha'Miskayem' in our Mishnah comes to include Mei Tarya ve'Aftza.
'Mei Tarya' is either rain-water (from the roof - Tosfos Yom-Tov) or water in which
one has soaked gall-nuts (though the text 'Mei Tarya ve'Aftza' is unclear).
(c) Rebbi Yossi Hagelili invalidates in lieu of parchment - anything that has life
(e.g. animals) and food.
(d) Rebbi Chiya cites a Beraisa which includes Eiver, Shachor and Shichor. Eiver is
1. ... 'Shachor' - charcoal.
2. ... and 'Shichor' - vitriol.
(a) If someone writes with red paint over letters written in ink on Shabbos, Rebbi
Yochanan and Resh Lakish obligate him to bring two Chata'os - for erasing (the
original letters) and for writing (the new ones).
(b) If he writes with ink over ink or red paint over paint - he is Patur, because he
neither erased nor wrote.
(c) Should he write with red paint over ink, there are two opinions as to whether he
is Chayav or Patur. He might be ...
1. ... Chayav - for erasing the original letters.
(d) The first opinion disagrees with the latter argument - because, seeing as the new
letters are visible, he did not really spoil the original ones.
2. ... Patur - because he spoilt them.
(a) Resh Lakish asked Rebbi Yochanan whether, in a case where the witnesses are
unable to sign their names, one writes their names in red paint, and they then
overwrite it in ink. He thought that it should be in order to do so - based on the
joint ruling of Rebbi Yochanan and himself (cited earlier) that someone who does this
on Shabbos is Chayav?
(b) In spite of his previous statement, Rebbi Yochanan justified his reply (that this
was not considered writing) - on the grounds that he himself was not sure that it was
considered writing, that his original ruling was merely le'Chumra and that, in the
time of the Beis-Hamikdash, he would not have relied on it to obligate a Korban. In
any event, one can certainly not rely on it to validate a Get (le'Kula).
(c) Rav proposes scratching the witnesses names on the parchment and inviting the
witnesses to sign on the cuts. The problem with Shmuel, who suggests writing their
names with lead for them to overwrite is - that this would mean that writing with
lead is not called writing, whereas the Tana of the Beraisa quoted by Rebbi Chiya
validates a Get that is written in lead, charcoal or vitriol.
(d) We resolve this problem - by establishing Shmuel, not by plain lead, but by water
in which ground lead was soaked (which is not considered writing).
(a) The discrepancy between Rebbi Avahu, who validates writing the witnesses names in
Mei Milin (water in which gall-nuts have been soaked), with the Beraisa cited by
Chanina, which validates a Get that is written with 'Mei Tarya *ve'Aftza*' (which is
synonymous with Mei Milin) is - the fact that, according to the Tana, writing with
Mei Milin, is considered writing. In that case, how can Rebbi Avahu permit the
witnesses to overwrite Mei Milin, which will then be 'writing on top of writing'?
(b) We resolve this discrepancy - by establishing the former by parchment that was
treated with 'Aftza', and overwriting it with Mei Milin will not be considered
writing (due to the principle 'Ein Mei Milin al-Gabei Mei Milin').
(c) The final suggestion is that of Rav Papa, who advised Papa Tura'ah (an ox dealer,
as his name suggests) - to sign with spit the names of the witnesses who did not know
how to write, and allow them to overwrite it in ink.
(a) When someone used this method of signing with regard to Sh'taros other than Gitin
- Rav Kahana gave him lashes.
(b) If witnesses do not know how to sign their names - then one should look for other
(c) Gitin are different however - because sometimes it is difficult to find other
witnesses, and there is a suspicion that the woman will remain an Agunah.
(d) Rav's opinion is substantiated by a Beraisa.
(a) If witnesses do not know how to read (the Sh'tar that they are signing), but do
know how to sign their names - we read the Sh'tar to them before they sign, as Raban
Shimon ben Gamliel states in the above Beraisa.
(b) Raban Shimon ben Gamliel differentiates between Gitin and other Sh'taros, as we
learned already above - the Tana Kama permits pre-signing for witnesses who do not
know how to sign by all Sh'taros.
(c) Rava rules like Raban Shimon ben Gamliel. According to Rav Gamda however - Rava
rules like the Rabbanan.
(d) When Rav Gamda quoting Rava, ruled like the Rabbanan (the Tana Kama), he was
referring to witnesses who knew how to write but not how to *read* - whereas when Rav
Kahana (on the previous Amud) gave Malkos (like Raban Shimon ben Gamliel), it was to
someone who validated witnesses who were able to read but not to *write*.
(a) Rav Yehudah had trouble in reading the Get he was about to sign or corroborate -
due to old age.
(b) Ula told him - to take his cue from Rebbi Elazar and Rav Nachman, who had
Sh'taros read to them by the members of their respective Batei-Din.
(c) This concession will not apply - to anyone whom the Dayanim do not respect like
Rav Nachman (who was appointed Dayan by the Resh Galusa, to whom he was related).
Because only then can the witness or remaining Dayan rely on the faithful reading of
the Dayanim. Anyone not of the caliber of Rav Nachman, or any Beis-Din not of the
caliber of his Beis-Din is not eligible.
(d) Rebbi Elazar enjoyed the title - of Master of Eretz Yisrael, because for one, he
was a greater Baki (had a wider knowledge) than his colleagues.
(a) When a Sh'tar Parsa'ah (one that was written in the Persian courts, in Persian
and signed by Persian Nochri witnesses) came before him (to corroborate) - he would
make each witness read the Sh'tar not in the presence of the other, and in an
(b) We reconcile Rav Papa with what we learned in the first Perek, that with a Sh'tar
Parsa'ah one may only claim from B'nei Chorin (but not from Meshubadim) - by
establishing the latter by a Sh'tar that was written independently of the courts.
(a) Huna bar Nasan quoting Ameimar, told Rav Ashi that a Sh'tar Parsa'ah signed by
Jews is valid even to claim from Meshabadim. Besides the witnesses being able to read
Persian and the Sh'tar being written on a surface that does not allow forgery, Rav
Ashi also stipulated that, for the Sh'tar to be Kasher - it requires the main points
to be repeated briefly in the last line.
(b) In reply to Rav Ashi's second query (regarding a Sh'tar that does not allow
forgery) - Huna bar Nasan assured him that the parchment on which the Sh'tar was
written had been treated with gall-nuts.
(c) Despite the fact that the Sh'tar was without flaw, Huna bar Nasan is coming to
teach us - that a Sh'tar that is written in a foreign language is Kasher.
(d) Granted, that too, is a Mishnah in 'ha'Megaresh' 'Get she'Kasvo Ivris ve'Eidav
Yevanis ... , Kasher'. However, we may have thought that - this is confined to Gitin,
where Chazal might have been lenient for fear that the woman will otherwise remain an
Agunah (in places where it is hard to come by witnesses who are conversant with
Lashon ha'Kodesh), but that other Sh'taros will only be Kasher if they are written in
(a) Shmuel says that if a man gave his a wife a blank piece of paper saying 'Harei
Zeh Gitech!' - she is divorced, because he may have written the Get with Mei Milin
(which is basically invisible unless treated with a special water).
(b) The Sh'tar in question cannot have been treated with Afeitzim, because if it had
been - it would be a case of 'Mei Milin al-Gabei Mei Milin', which is Pasul.
(c) The Tana of the Beraisa says that if a man gave his wife a Get and then informed
her, after she had tossed it into the fire, that it was a Sh'tar Pasim or a Sh'tar
Amanah - the Get is valid, and he has no right to forbid her to marry.
(d) A Sh'tar ...
1. ... Pasim is - (like Sh'tar Piyusim) a Sh'tar where the creditor asked a close
friend between whom there is complete trust, to write him a Sh'tar stating that he
(the friend) owes him money, to convey the impression that he is a wealthy man.
2. ... Amanah is - a document of loan written by a potential debtor, who then handed
it to the creditor on the understanding that he will not claim from him unless the
loan actually took place.
(a) From the fact that the Tana does not rather present the case of a blank Sh'tar.
the above Beraisa poses a Kashya on Shmuel, who just validated a blank Get. If that
is so - why did the Tana not rather present the case of a blank Sh'tar which the
woman then tossed into the fire, since that would have been even a bigger Chidush?
(b) We answer that Shmuel only validates the Get if, after checking with the
appropriate dye (see Tosfos DH 'Maya'), the letters ultimately appeared (which is not
possible once the Get no longer exists). The problem with this is - that if at the
time when he handed his wife the Get, the writing was not visible, the Get will be
Pasul, irrespective of whether it appeared later or not.
(c) We resolve the problem - by pointing out that Shmuel also made a point of using
the term 'Chayshinan', by which he meant that he suspected that the invisible ink may
not have been so invisible after all. Perhaps initially, it was faintly visible, in
which case, the Get would have been valid.
(d) The ramifications of Shmuel's ruling are - that the woman is a Safek Megureshes.
Consequently, should her husband die, she will be forbidden to marry a Kohen, and if
necessary, will be required to perform Chalitzah with his brother, but not Yibum.
(a) Ravina, quoting Mereimar in the name of Rav Dimi, requires the witnesses - who
witnessed the handing over of the Get, to read it.
(b) We ask on him from the Beraisa that we just cited (regarding a man who gave his
wife a Get and who then informed her, after she had tossed it into the fire, that it
was a Sh'tar Pasim or a Sh'tar Amanah). If the witnesses were obligated to read it,
we ask - how can the husband then claim that it was a Sh'tar Pasim or a Sh'tar
(c) Shmuel therefore explains that the Tana speaks - when after reading the Get, one
of the witnesses placed it in his pocket before handing it to the woman, giving rise
to the suspicion that he may have swapped the Get for another Sh'tar. The Tana's
Chidush is that we do not.
(a) When the 'Get' that a man threw his wife fell among barrels of wine and after
searching, they discovered a Mezuzah, Rav Nachman declared the lost 'Get' to be
synonymous with the Mezuzah - because it is unusual to find Mezuzos among barrels of
wine. Presumably therefore, the Mezuzah that they discovered is the one he threw, and
there was never a Get there is the first place.
(b) Rav Nachman would have ruled differently however, had they discovered two or
three Mezuzos. He would then have said that, just as they found one Mezuzah there,
maybe there was another one there, and the Get that he threw her really was a Get.
(c) The reason that they failed to find the Get is - because it was removed by