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1) HALACHOS THAT INVOLVE A "REVI'IS"
QUESTIONS: Rebbi Elazar enumerates ten Halachos that depend on the Shi'ur of
a Revi'is, five of which involve wine or blood, and five of which involve
water, oil, or other liquids. The Gemara asks why Rebbi Elazar lists only
ten. There is another Halachah that involves a Revi'is -- the Halachah of
Netilas Yadayim, for which the Shi'ur is a Revi'is of water for either one
person or for two people who wash from the same Revi'is. The Gemara answers
that Rebbi Elazar is not referring to cases of argument ("b'Plugta Lo
ka'Mairi"), and in the Mishnah that discusses the Halachah of Netilas
Yadayim, Rebbi Yosi argues and says that each person must use his own
Revi'is and they may not share a Revi'is. The Gemara continues and asks
about two other omissions from Rebbi Elazar's list -- the Halachah of a
Revi'is of water for a Sotah, and the Halachah of a Revi'is of water for
pouring onto urine (Mei Raglayim) to be Mevatel it in order to permit
Davening in its presence. Again, the Gemara rejects the question by saying
"b'Plugta Lo ka'Mairi," and those cases involve arguments.
There are a number of obvious questions on this Gemara.
(a) How could the Gemara say that Rebbi Elazar is not discussing any
Halachah that involves a Machlokes Tana'im? Rebbi Elazar does include in his
list the Halachah of a Revi'is of blood that is Metamei even when it comes
from two corpses, but that Halachah is also the subject of a Machlokes! The
Gemara in Sanhedrin (4a) says that although Rebbi Akiva says that blood from
two Mesim is Metamei, the Rabanan (who learn the verse differently) maintain
that only a Revi'is of blood from a single Mes is Metamei!
(b) Why does the Gemara say that Rebbi Elazar does not include the Halachah
of Netilas Yadayim because it the subject of a Machlokes? The Machlokes is
only whether two people may use one Revi'is. Everyone agrees, though, that
the first person to use the water for Netilas Yadayim must use at least a
(c) If the Gemara already knows that "b'Plugta Lo ka'Mairi," then why does
it ask additional questions on Rebbi Elazar from the cases of Sotah and Mei
Raglayim? The same answer of "b'Plugta Lo ka'Mairi" applies to those
questions as well!
(a) The Rishonim offer a number of answers to the first question.
1. Although the Gemara cites Rebbi Akiva's opinion that even a Revi'is from
two Mesim is Metamei, the Halachah of a Revi'is of blood that Rebbi Elazar
is discussing is a Revi'is from *one* Mes, which both Rebbi Akiva and the
Rabanan agree is Metamei b'Ohel. He only quotes Rebbi Akiva's statement, in
which Rebbi Akiva derives his ruling from the word "Nafshos," because that
is the only explicit source teaching that a Revi'is of blood from even a
single Mes is Metamei (like Tosfos in Sanhedrin 4a mentions). (MEFARESH)
(b) The Rishonim do not discuss why the Mishnah left out the Halachah of a
Revi'is for Netilas Yadayim of a single person. The Acharonim, though,
suggest a number of approaches.
2. The SHITAH MEKUBETZES cites RABEINU AZRIEL who says that only in the
second set of Halachos of Revi'is, the "white" set, is Rebbi Elazar avoiding
cases of Machlokes. The first set, the "red" set, is including even cases of
Machlokes. Tosfos and the Rosh prove this from the fact that Nazir is
counted in the list, even though our Mishnah says that there is a Machlokes
whether the Shi'ur for a Nazir is a Revi'is or a k'Zayis of wine. (If Rebbi
Elazar includes in the first set of Halachos of Revi'is those Halachos that
are subject to Machlokes, then why does he avoid them in the second set?
Perhaps it is merely to preserve the symmetry of two sets of five Halachos
3. RABEINU AZRIEL adds that perhaps the Machlokes between Rebbi Akiva and
the Rabanan regarding whether the verse is read, "Nafshos," or "Nafshas"
(without the "Vav"), is not the same type of Machlokes as the Machlokes
which Rebbi Elazar wants to avoid.
Perhaps Rabeinu Azriel means that both Rebbi Akiva and the Rabanan agree
that the Shi'ur of blood is a Revi'is, and the question is simply from where
must the Revi'is of blood come (that is, must it come from only one Mes, or
can the Revi'is also come from two Mesim). In contrast, regarding Netilas
Yadayim the Tana'im argue about the Shi'ur itself: whether the Shi'ur of
water for Netilas Yadayim is a Revi'is or is less than a Revi'is.
1. The KEREN ORAH suggests a simple approach. Even though there is no
Machlokes concerning the first person and everyone agrees that the first
person must use a Revi'is for Netilas Yadayim, nevertheless the Tana'im
argue about the details of that Halachah -- whether or not the second person
may use the leftover water. Rebbi Elazar does not want to list a Halachah in
which the Tana'im argue over the details, even when they agree to the basic
(c) Why does the Gemara ask that Rebbi Elazar should include other Halachos
in his list? The Gemara already answered that Rebbi Elazar is not discussing
Halachos which are subject to Machlokes, "b'Plugta Lo ka'Mairi," which
applies to all of the cases in question!
(The Rishonim might not have asked this question because they took the
approach of the Keren Orah. However, this will not conform with the answer
of the Mefaresh to the first question, that Rebbi Elazar includes the case
of Revi'is of blood in his count because Rebbi Akiva and the Rabanan argue
only about a detail -- must the Revi'is come from only one Mes or may it
come from more than one Mes.)
2. RAV CHANANYAH YOM TOV LIPA MEISLISH in his Hagahos (in the back of the
Vilna Shas) answers (in the name of the ATZEI ALMOGIM) that Rebbi Elazar is
only listing Halachos for which the Shi'ur is a Revi'is and it is irrelevant
if there is more than a Revi'is (that is, having more than a Revi'is is of
no benefit). In contrast, with regard to Netilas Yadayim, the Gemara in
Shabbos (62b) says that the more water a person uses for Netilas Yadayim,
the better. Therefore, Rebbi Elazar does not include this Halachah in his
According to this answer, why does the Gemara itself not use this answer to
explain why Rebbi Elazar the omits the Halachah of Netilas Yadayim with a
Revi'is? The answer might be as follows. The Gemara was asking that Rebbi
Elazar should have counted the Halachah of "Shayarei Taharah" -- that is,
after a Revi'is has been used for Netilas Yadayim by one person, a second
person may use the remaining water. Regarding the "Shayarei Taharah" that
the second person is using, it makes no difference whether the first person
started with one Revi'is or with 100 Revi'ios. In either case, the second
person now is left with less than a Revi'is to use for Netilas Yadayim, and
therefore Rebbi Elazar should have included this Halachah in his list. The
Gemara answers that "b'Plugta Lo ka'Mairi" and that is why the Halachah of
"Shayarei Taharah" is not mentioned. The Revi'is that the first person uses
is not mentioned because the Revi'is in the case of Netilas Yadayim is a
*minimum* Shi'ur, and more than a Revi'is is preferable.
3. The ARZEI HA'LEVANON cites the TAM DERECH who suggests that the words
"b'Plugta Lo ka'Mairi" here have an entirely different meaning than we
assumed. The Gemara is not saying that Rebbi Elazar is avoiding a Machlokes
("Plugta"). Rather, the Gemara means that Rebbi Elazar is avoiding a
Halachah which does not always apply -- a Halachah that has exceptions
("Plugta"). The Halachah that a person must use a Revi'is of water for
Netilas Yadayim applies only to the first person, but not to the second
person, since according to the Tana Kama the second person may use even less
than a Revi'is. That is why Rebbi Elazar does not mention this Halachah.
("Plugta" in this context means "separation" or "division," as in Bava Basra
The wording of the Gemara is somewhat more exact according to the Tam
Derech, since the Gemara simply writes "b'Plugta Lo ka'Mairi" without
mentioning who the Tana is that argues, and with what Halachah does he
argue, in contrast to the other cases in the Gemara where the Gemara
mentions the dissenting view.
1. The TAM DERECH (see above) explains that each time the Gemara answers,
"b'Plugta Lo ka'Mairi," it means something different. The first time it is
mentioned, it means that the Rebbi Elazar is not discussing Halachos that
have exceptions, as we mentioned above. The second time the Gemara says
"b'Plugta Lo ka'Mairi" it means that Rebbi Elazar is avoiding a Halachah
that depends on a Machlokes Tana'im. This answer, though, will not explain
why he omits the Halachah of Mei Raglayim, because in the Gemara (Berachos
25b) one Amora says that both the Tana Kama and Rebbi Zakai agree that a
Revi'is is needed to be Mevatel the Mei Raglayim "ba'Sof," when it is
already there, and the Tana that holds that any amount ("Kol she'Hu") is
sufficient is only when the water was there first, before the Mei Raglayim.
Another Amora there, however, says that the Tana Kama and Rebbi Zakai argue
even when the Mei Raglayim was there first. The Gemara here answers that
"b'Plugta Lo ka'Mairi," meaning that Rebbi Elazar is even avoiding a
Halachah that depends on a Machlokes *Amora'im*, such as in the case of the
Halachah of Mei Raglayim.
2. Another approach might be that the Gemara thought that Rebbi Elazar is
avoiding only a Halachah involving a Revi'is that is subject to Machlokes
when he holds like the dissenting opinion (who says that the Halachah does
not depend on a Revi'is). When he agrees to the Tana that says that the
Shi'ur is a Revi'is, then he does include it in his list. (The ROSH quoted
in the SHITAH MEKUBETZES suggests such an approach regarding the first five
Halachos of Revi'is (the "red" ones) that Rebbi Elazar mentions.)
Accordingly, the Gemara initially thought that Rebbi Elazar holds like Rebbi
Yosi regarding Netilas Yadayim, and that he holds like Rebbi Yehudah
regarding Sotah, and like Rebbi Zakai regarding Mei Raglayim. The Gemara
answers that he holds like the dissenting opinions in each case, and that is
why he does not include those Halachos in his list.
2) A NAZIR WHO EATS FIVE TYPES OF GRAPE PRODUCTS
QUESTION: The Beraisa says that if a Nazir eats wet grapes, dry grapes
(raisins), grape seeds and grape peals, and then squeezes grapes and drinks
the grape juice, he receives five sets of Malkus.
How can a person receive five sets of Malkus for these acts? If he was given
Hasra'ah before he ate each item, then it is obvious that he gets Malkus for
each act even if each one had not been mentioned individually in the verse.
The Mishnah in Makos states clearly that if a Nazir drinks wine five times
with five separate Hasra'os before each act, the Hasra'os make him Chayav
for five sets of Malkus.
If, on the other hand, he was given Hasra'ah before he started eating the
Isurim, and he received only one Hasra'ah and no more, then by the time that
he eats the last of the five items, the time period of "Toch Kedei Dibur"
surely must have passed, and thus the original Hasra'ah is no longer
effective to make him Chayav! Even if the items that he ate are each
prohibited by a separate mention in the Torah ("Shemos Mechalkos"), those
separate Isurim will not be Mechayev him Malkus without Hasra'ah!
If he mixed together all five of the Isurim and there is a k'Zayis of each
one in an amount of "b'Chdei Achilas Pras," and none of the Isurim are
Mevatel any of the others because they are each "Nosen Ta'am" and because
"k'Zayis b'Chdei Achilas Pras" is mid'Oraisa, then the Gemara should prove
from here that Rav Dimi was correct and "k'Zayis b'Chdei Achilas Pras" is
mid'Oraisa (see beginning of 36b)! (KEREN ORAH; this question actually
appears in the TOSFOS RABEINU PERETZ.)
The Gemara in Makos (20b) asks a similar question regarding the Isur of
"Kore'ach" (pulling out one's hair in mourning for one who died). The Gemara
cites a Beraisa that derives from a verse that a person who does multiple
acts of Korchah is Chayav for each and every act ("Korchos Mechalkos"). The
Gemara asks that this is difficult to understand no matter how we look at
it: if the person performed five acts of Korchah after receiving five
Hasra'os, then he certainly is Chayav five sets of Malkus even without the
verse. On the other hand, if he performed five acts of Korchah after
receiving a single Hasra'ah, then he should be Chayav only one set of
Malkus, because the Hasra'ah cannot apply to the second and subsequent
Korchos (since those acts were done after "Toch Kedei Dibur" from the
Hasra'ah, or, alternatively, even if those acts were done within "Toch Kedei
Dibur" of the Hasra'ah, perhaps a single Hasra'ah cannot apply to more than
a single act -- see Insights to Yevamos 101:1:a).
The Gemara there answers that one will be Chayav for separate acts of
Korchos when he does five Korchos in a single action, such as by using all
of the fingers on his hand to make five Korchos simultaneously. This answer
obviously will not apply in our Sugya, since it is impossible to eat (and
drink) a k'Zayis of five different items at one time.
(a) The KEREN ORAH points out that TOSFOS in Makos explains that the
Gemara's answer there is not the only answer to the question. The Gemara
could just as well have answered that the person performed five Korchos one
after the other with only one Hasra'ah beforehand (without waiting "Toch
Kedei Dibur" between each Korchah). According to Tosfos there, our Gemara
here, too, might be discussing a person who eats the five items one after
the other without waiting "Toch Kedei Dibur" between each one. This indeed
seems to be the intention of Tosfos and Tosfos Rabeinu Peretz in our Sugya.
It is obvious that according to this understanding, the Hasra'ah that the
person receives must be a single Hasra'ah phrased in a way that includes all
five actions, such as a Hasra'ah saying, "Do not eat anything that grows on
the vine!" If a separate Hasra'ah is given for each Isur, such as, "Do not
eat moist grapes!," "Do not eat dried grapes!," "Do not eat grape seeds!"
and so on, then the person should only be Chayav for the first thing that he
eats, because what he eats after that is already after "Toch Kedei Dibur" of
the Hasra'ah for that item, and we cannot say that he is doing one single,
long act of eating that starts immediately after the Hasra'ah, since the
Hasra'ah was for five *separate* acts of eating and not for a single act
that includes all those types of eating. This is why Tosfos here (DH v'Al
Zeh b'Atzmo) explains that one is Chayav two sets of Malkus for eating moist
grapes and dried grapes only when the Hasra'ah given was, "Do not eat
grapes" (without specifying "moist" or "dry" grapes).
(b) However, RASHI in Makos (ibid.) implies that a person would not be
Chayav five sets of Malkus for Korchah or for drinking wine if the actions
are done consecutively following a single Hasra'ah, even if they are "Toch
Kedei Dibur" of each other. (We pointed out in Yevamos (Insights to Yevamos
101:1) that Rashi holds that Hasra'ah is "used up" after the first action of
Aveirah is done, even if the second Aveirah is done "Toch Kedei Dibur.")
According to Rashi, why is the person Chayav for five sets of Malkus in the
case of our Gemara? The answer might be that perhaps Rashi agrees with
Tosfos that if a Nazir eats five items of Isur without pausing for even an
instant between them, then the Hasra'ah before he starts to eat will apply
to everything that he eats, since everything he eats is included in a single
act of eating which started within "Toch Kedei Dibur" of the Hasra'ah. This
cannot be compared to the case in the Gemara in Makos where a person does
five acts of pulling out his hair. There, he must finish pulling one batch
of hair before he starts pulling the next (if he is using one hand), so
there *must* be a pause in between the two actions. In contrast, a Nazir can
continue to fill his mouth while he is swallowing whatever is already in his
mouth. Similar to the case of Korchos, a Nazir's act of drinking wine the
whole day cannot be considered one long action, because it is physically
impossible to swallow a liquid at the same time that he puts more into his
mouth. That is why Rashi in Makos writes that he is only Chayav for one set
of Malkus when he drinks wine al day, even if he does not pause in between
drinks. According to Rashi, the wording of our Gemara is exact. The Gemara
says that he is Chayav for five sets of Malkus for eating four different
solid foods from the vine, and he is also Chayav for drinking juice squeezed
from the grapes. According to Rashi, the Gemara might deliberately be
leaving the Isur of grape juice for last, because if he consumed the juice
earlier, he would have had to pause before eating something else and the
Hasra'ah would not apply to whatever he ate after pausing.
(c) The previous two answers are applicable only if, in order to make the
person Chayav to receive Malkus, the Hasra'ah does not have to include the
words in the verse that prohibit that action with a punishment of Malkus. If
the Hasra'ah must include mention of each of the five types of products
individually, then he would have to eat all of them within "Toch Kedei
Dibur" in order to be Chayav five sets of Malkus, like we said earlier (a).
If we maintain that the Hasra'ah must include the source in the verse for
the punishment of Malkus for that action, then how are we to understand this
Gemara? (See RASHI in Shevuos 20b, DH v'Azharasei and DH Achalti; see also
MINCHAS CHINUCH, Mitzvah 35 and 209.)
The answer is that perhaps the Gemara is discussing a person who indeed
mixes together these five types of Isurim and eats them all together,
starting within "Toch Kedei Dibur" of the Hasra'ah. What about the Gemara
quoted by TOSFOS RABEINU PERETZ (Zevachim 71a) that says that Isurim that
are mixed together are normally Mevatel each other (such as in the case of a
person who eats a mixture of Pigul, Nosar, and Tamei; the person is not
Chayav for any of the Isurim, because each one is a Mi'ut and is Batel
b'Rov). The answer is that perhaps different Isurim which are only
subcategories of one general Isur cannot be Mevatel each other. Here, since
all of the Isurim of a Nazir are all subcategories of products of the vine,
they cannot become Batel. Therefore, even if, normally, "k'Zayis b'Chdei
Achilas Pras" is mid'Rabanan when the Isur is Batel b'Rov (mid'Oraisa), in
the case of this mixture the person will be Chayav *mid'Oraisa* for each
item, since they do not become Batel when mixed together.