והא שברים נינהו תרגמה שמואל בעומדין על בסיסן But aren’t they fragments of idols, which are permitted according to Shmuel? The Gemara answers that Shmuel interpreted the mishna as follows: It is referring to a case where these objects that are in the figure of a hand or a foot are standing on their pedestals, which shows that they were designed this way initially and are not merely fragments.
אתמר עבודת כוכבים שנשתברה מאיליה רבי יוחנן אמר אסורה רשב"ל אמר מותרת § It was stated: With regard to objects of idol worship that broke by themselves, Rabbi Yoḥanan says: It is prohibited to derive benefit from them. Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish says: It is permitted.
רבי יוחנן אמר אסורה דהא לא בטלה רשב"ל אמר מותרת מסתמא בטולי מבטיל לה מימר אמר איהי נפשה לא אצלה לההוא גברא מצלה ליה The Gemara explains the sides of the dispute. Rabbi Yoḥanan says that it is prohibited, as its owner did not revoke its status as an object of idol worship. Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish says that it is permitted, as the owner presumably revoked its status as an object of idol worship, having said to himself: If the idol could not save even itself from harm, can it save that man, i.e., myself?
איתיביה ר' יוחנן לרשב"ל (שמואל א ה, ד) וראש דגון ושתי כפות ידיו כרותות וגו' וכתיב (שמואל א ה, ה) על כן לא ידרכו כהני דגון וגו' Rabbi Yoḥanan raised an objection to Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish from the passage in the book of Samuel recounting the downfall of the Philistine god Dagon: “And when they arose early the next morning, behold, Dagon was fallen on his face to the ground before the Ark of the Lord; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands lay cut off upon the threshold; only the trunk of Dagon was left to him” (I Samuel 5:4). And from the next verse it seems that Dagon’s worshippers accorded it honor despite its destruction, as it is written: “Therefore, the priests of Dagon, and anyone who comes into Dagon’s house, do not tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod until this day” (I Samuel 5:5). Evidently, when an idol breaks, its worshippers do not stop worshipping it.
אמר לו משם ראיה התם שמניחין את הדגון ועובדין את המפתן דאמרי הכי שבקיה איסריה לדגון ואתא איתיב ליה על המפתן Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish said to him: Is there proof from there? There, the reason people did not tread on the threshold of Dagon is that they had abandoned their worship of the Dagon and would instead worship the threshold upon which Dagon was found, as they stated this reasoning: The spirit of Dagon has left the Dagon idol and instead it came and rested upon the threshold.
איתיביה המוצא שברי צלמים הרי אלו מותרין הא שברי עבודת כוכבים אסורין Rabbi Yoḥanan raised another objection to Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish from the mishna: In the case of one who finds fragments of statues, these are permitted. This indicates that fragments of known objects of idol worship are forbidden.
לא תימא שברי עבודת כוכבים אסורין אלא אימא הא צלמים עצמן אסורין וסתמא כר' מאיר Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish replied: Do not say that the indication is that fragments of objects of idol worship are forbidden; rather say that the indication is that full statues themselves are forbidden, and the unattributed mishna is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Meir, who, in the previous mishna, prohibits any statue as it is possible that it is worshipped annually.
ורבי יוחנן מדר"מ נשמע להו לרבנן לאו אמר ר' מאיר צלמים אסורין שברי צלמים מותרין לרבנן עבודת כוכבים נמי היא אסורה ושבריה מותרין The Gemara asks: But how does Rabbi Yoḥanan refute the following logic: From the opinion of Rabbi Meir one can learn a detail with regard to the opinion of the Rabbis. Doesn’t Rabbi Meir say that statues are forbidden, while fragments of statues are permitted? From this, one can derive that this is true according to the Rabbis as well with regard to objects of idol worship: The object itself is forbidden, but its fragments are permitted.
הכי השתא התם אימר עבדום אימר לא עבדום ואת"ל עבדום אימר בטלום עבודת כוכבים ודאי עבדוה מי יימר דבטלה הוי ספק וודאי ואין ספק מוציא מידי ודאי The Gemara rejects this comparison: How can these cases be compared? There, in the case of statues, the fragments are permitted because there is room to say that people worshipped them, and there is also room to say that people did not worship them; and even if you say that people worshipped them, there is room to say that their owners subsequently revoked them. This is not comparable to an object of idol worship, which people certainly worshipped, and who is to say that its owner certainly revoked it? It is a conflict between an uncertainty as to whether or not it was revoked, and a certainty that it was worshipped, and the principle is that an uncertainty does not override a certainty.
ואין ספק מוציא מידי ודאי והתניא חבר שמת והניח מגורה מלאה פירות אפילו הן בני יומן הרי הן בחזקת מתוקנין The Gemara asks: And does an uncertainty not override a certainty? But isn’t it taught in a baraita: In the case of a ḥaver who died and left a storehouse filled with produce, even if the produce was there only that day, it has the presumptive status of produce that was ritually prepared, i.e., properly tithed. This is due to the presumption that the ḥaver tithed the produce himself or instructed others to do so.
והא הכא דודאי טבילי ספק עשרינהו ספק לא עשרינהו וקאתי ספק ומוציא מידי ודאי The Gemara infers: And here, in this case, the produce was certainly untithed at the outset, and there is uncertainty whether the ḥaver tithed it, and there is uncertainty whether he did not tithe it, and despite this conflict, the uncertainty whether it was tithed comes and overrides the certainty that it was untithed produce.
התם ודאי וודאי הוא דודאי עשרינהו כדרבי חנינא חוזאה דאמר רבי חנינא חוזאה חזקה על חבר שאינו מוציא דבר שאינו מתוקן מתחת ידו The Gemara rejects this claim: There, in that case, conflict is between certainty and certainty, as the ḥaver certainly tithed the produce. This presumption is in accordance with the statement of Rabbi Ḥanina Ḥoza’a; as Rabbi Ḥanina Ḥoza’a says: There is a presumption with regard to a ḥaver that he does not release an item from his possession that is not ritually prepared.
ואבע"א מעיקרא לא טבילי ספק וספק הוא And if you wish, say instead that perhaps the produce did not initially have the status of untithed produce, and therefore the conflict is between uncertainty and uncertainty.
אפשר דעבד כדר' אושעיא דאמר מערים אדם על תבואתו ומכניסה במוץ שלה כדי שתהא בהמתו אוכלת ופטורה מן המעשר This is because it is possible that there was never an obligation to tithe the produce, as the ḥaver may have acted in accordance with the statement of Rabbi Oshaya, who says that a person can employ artifice to circumvent obligations incumbent upon him in dealing with his grain, and bring it into his courtyard in its chaff so that his animal may eat from it. And this grain is exempt from tithes. Although the obligation to tithe produce that has been fully processed applies even to animal fodder, it is permitted to feed one’s animal untithed produce that has not been fully processed. In light of this halakha it is possible that the produce in the storehouse of the ḥaver never needed to be tithed. Consequently, this case is a conflict between two uncertain factors, as it is uncertain whether or not the owner was obligated to tithe the produce in the first place, and even if he was required to do so, it is uncertain whether or not he tithed it.
ואין ספק מוציא מידי ודאי והתניא אמר ר' יהודה מעשה בשפחתו The Gemara raises another objection: And is it so that an uncertainty does not override a certainty? But isn’t it taught in a baraita that Rabbi Yehuda said: There was an incident involving the maidservant