POINT BY POINT SUMMARY
by Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
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Previous daf Megilah 18
MEGILAH 16, 17, 18, and 19 (1st day of Sukos) sponsored by a generous grant from an anonymous donor. Kollel Iyun Hadaf is indebted to him for his encouragement and support and prays that Hashem will repay him in kind.
1) THE ORDER OF THE 18 BLESSINGS
(a) (Acceptance of prayer): "I will bring them to my holy
mountain and make them rejoice in my house of prayer.
2) ONE MUST READ FROM A MEGILAH WRITTEN IN ASHURIS
(b) (Temple Service): The previous verse continues, "Their
burnt and Shlamim offerings on my altar".
(c) (Thanks): "One who sacrifices, thanks".
(d) (Birkas Kohanim): "Aharon blessed the people ... Me'asos
(from having done) the sin-offering ...".
1. Question: If so, Birkas Kohanim should follow Temple
(e) (Shalom): "They will put my name on Yisrael, and I will
bless them" - Hashem's blessing is Shalom.
2. Answer: We have the verse, "One who sacrifices,
3. Question: Why rely on that more than the verse of
4. Answer: Logically, Temple Service and Thanks are one
(f) Question: If 120 Sages, including prophets ordered the
blessings, why did Shimon ha'Pekuli need to order them
(Yavne was 400 years after the last prophets)?
(g) Answer: The order was forgotten, he re-established it.
(h) One may not compose a blessing on his own.
1. (R. Elazar): "Who will speak the great acts of Hashem,
will make heard agll his praise?" - One who can make
heard all his praise is fitting to speak of his
2. (Rabah Bar Bar Chanah): One who speaks of Hashem's
praise too much is uprooted from the world.
3. (R. Yehuda of Giborya): "To you, silence is praise" -
the best spice (to praise Hashem) is silence.
4. (Rav Dimi): In Eretz Yisrael, they say, one should pay
twice as much for silence as for a word.
(a) (Mishnah): If one reads by heart, he didn't fulfill the
3) READING INTERMITTENTLY
1. (Rava): We learn this from a Gezerah Shaveh
"Zekira-Zekira"; the Torah said to write the
remembrance of Amalek in a Sefer.
(b) (Mishnah): One who reads in Aramaic translation didn't
fulfill the Mitzvah.
2. Question: How do we know that "Zekira" mentioned in
the Megilah is reciting it - perhaps it suffices to
think about it!
3. Answer: "Remember, don't forget" - forgetting is in
the heart, "remember" must be coming to say that we
must recite it.
1. Question: If it is written in Hebrew, and he reads it
in Aramaic, that is by heart (so why was it needed
to teach this)!
(c) (Mishnah): We may read in La'az to a Lo'ez.
2. Answer: We learn here that if it was written and read
in Aramaic, he didn't fulfill the Mitzvah.
(d) Question: But the Mishnah said, one who reads in any
language did not fulfill the Mitzvah!
(e) Answer: (Rav and Shmuel): In Yevanis, one fulfills the
1. Question: If it is written in Ashuris, and he read in
Yevanis, that is by heart!
(f) Question (Beraisa): "One who read in Giftis, Ivris, Ilmis
or Midis did not fulfill the Mitzvah".
2. Answer (R. Acha): It was written in Yevanis.
3. (R. Acha): "He called him Kel, Elokei Yisrael" -
Hashem called Yakov Kel! - had Yakov called the
altar "Kel", the verse would have said, "Yakov
(g) Answer: That is if he does not understand the language;
Rav and Shmuel are dealing with one who understands
(h) Question: If so, why did they say, he read in Yevanis -
the same is true of any language!
(i) Retraction: Rav and Shmuel came to say that Yevanis is
acceptable for everyone; they did not come to explain the
Mishnah. The Mishnah is dealing with one who understands
(j) Question: But the Mishnah says that Yevanis is only good
(k) Answer: Rav and Shmuel hold like R. Shimon Ben Gamliel,
who permits writing Seforim in Yevanis.
(l) Question: If so, they should have said, the law is like
R. Shimon Ben Gamliel!
(m) Had they said that, we would have thought that they
permit Yevanis for other Seforim, but not for Megilas
Esther, which says "as their writing"; now, we see that
even the Megilah may be written in Yevanis.
(n) (Mishnah): A Lo'ez who heard Ashuris fulfilled the
(o) Question: But he doesn't understand!
(p) Answer: One fulfills the Mitzvah even without
understanding; this must be so, for women and unlearned
men do not understand when it is read in Hebrew!
(q) Objection (Ravina): We (scholars) also do not know what
"ha'Achashteranim Bnei ha'Ramakim" means! Rather, one
publicizes the miracle by reading it, even without
(a) (Mishnah): One who read Seirugin (intermittently) fulfill
(b) The sages didn't know the meaning of the following words,
until they overheard Rebbi's maid-servant say them, then
they understood from context.
1. Seirugin - with pauses in the middle.
2. Chaluglagos - portulak (a type of vegetable).
3. Salsalah - turn about.
4. Yehavcha - your burden.
5. Titasiha - I swept it.
(c) (Beraisa): One who read intermittently fulfilled the
Mitzvah, but not if he read out of order;
4) LAWS OF WRITING THE MEGILAH
(d) (R. Muna): If he paused long enough to finish it, he did
not fulfill the Mitzvah.
(e) (Rav Yosef): The law is like R. Muna.
1. Question (Abaye): 'To finish it' - from where he
paused, or from beginning to end?
(f) (R. Ava): Rav says the law is as R. Muna; Shmuel
disagrees. Thusly it was taught in Sura.
2. Answer (Rav Yosef): From beginning to end - if not,
the Shi'ur (amount) changes according to the
(g) In Pumpadisa it was taught this way in the name of Rav
Kahane; Rav Bibi taught contrarily, Shmuel rules as R.
(h) (Rav Yosef): Rav Bibi's teaching is preferred, since we
know that Shmuel is concerned for the opinion of an
1. (Mishnah): A widow is awaiting Levirate marriage. A
brother of the deceased engaged her sister. R.
Yehuda Ben Beseira: We tell him not to consummate
the marriage until his older brother will perform
Levirate marriage or Chalitzah.
(i) (Beraisa): If the scribe omitted letters or verses, and
the reader said them by heart, he fulfilled the Mitzvah.
2. (Shmuel): The law is as R. Yehuda Ben Beseira.
(j) Question (Beraisa): If letters faded or were torn, if
their image is recognizable, it is Kosher; if not, it is
(k) Answer: The Beraisa speaks when the majority is faded or
(l) (Beraisa): If the reader omitted a verse, he may not
finish and later say the verse; rather, he returns to
that verse and reads in order;
(m) One who enters a Shul, and finds the congregation in the
middle of the reading cannot hear the second half, and
later, the first; rather, he reads the entire Megilah in
(n) (Mishnah): One who dozed in the middle fulfilled the
(o) (Rav Ashi): 'Dozing' is half asleep, half awake; if
called, he responds, but cannot answer anything which
(a) (Mishnah): One who was writing, expounding or
proofreading fulfilled the Mitzvah only if he intended.
(b) Question: If he said each verse by memory, then wrote it
- this is by heart, he should not fulfill the Mitzvah!
(c) Answer: Rather, he said each verse after writing it.
(d) Question: But R. Chelbo taught, the law is, one must read
the entire Megilah! And even the dissenting opinions
agree that the entire Megilah must be written!
(e) Answer: Rather, a complete Megilah was in front of him,
and he read from it as he wrote.
(f) (Rabah Bar Bar Chanah): One may only copy, one may not
write by memory.
1. The Beraisa seems to support this - this explains why
a Megilah was in front of him!
(g) Question (Beraisa): R. Meir went to Asya to make a leap
year. There was not a Megilah there, so he wrote one from
memory, and read it.
2. Rejection: There is no support - the Beraisa gives the
law, if such a case occurs.
(h) Answer (R. Avahu): R. Meir is an exception; Torah, which
is generally forgotten when one closes his eyes, remains
in front of him.
(i) Rav Chisda found Rav Chananel writing by memory. He said,
the whole Torah is fitting to be written by your mouth -
but Chachamim said, we may not write by heart.
1. Question: From his praise, we see that he does not
forget - why was R. Meir different?
(j) Abaye allowed people of Bar Chabo's house to write from
memory - he holds like a different Tana.
2. Answer: R. Meir's case was a pressed circumstance,
there was no other solution.
1. (Beraisa - R. Yirmiyah): Tefilin and Mezuzahs may be
written by heart, and do not require Sirtut (scratch
lines to ensure straight writing).
(k) (Mishnah): If it was written with paint ... only ink is
(l) These are the meanings of the invalid ink substitutes of
2. The law is, Tefilin doesn't need Sirtut, but Mezuzahs
do; both may be written by heart, since everybody is
fluent in (the verse written in) them.
1. Sam - paint.
2. Sikra - a red dye.
3. Kumus - Sap of a tree.