Bava Batra 116aבבא בתרא קט״ז א
The William Davidson Talmudתלמוד מהדורת ויליאם דוידסון
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116aקט״ז א

ולא תהא תורה שלמה שלנו כשיחה בטלה שלכם מה לבת בנו שכן יפה כחה במקום האחין תאמר בבתו שהורע כחה במקום אחין ונצחום ואותו היום עשאוהו יום טוב

but will our perfect Torah not be as worthy as your frivolous speech, as your inference is fallacious: What is notable about the inheritance of a daughter of the deceased’s son? It is notable in that her right is enhanced in that she inherits from her paternal grandfather together with the brothers of her father. Would you say that the same applies with regard to the deceased’s daughter, whose right to inherit is diminished in that she does not inherit from her father together with her brothers? The Sadducee’s a fortiori inference is thereby disproved. The Gemara concludes: And since the Sadducees had no counterargument, the Sages were victorious over them, and they established that day, the twenty-fourth of Tevet, as a minor festival to celebrate the establishment of the halakha in accordance with the opinion of the Sages.

(שופטים כא, יז) ויאמרו ירושת פלטה לבנימן ולא ימחה שבט מישראל

Having discussed the halakha of a son’s daughter’s right to inheritance, the Gemara cites a verse that relates to the matter. After the incident known as: The concubine in Gibeah, the men of the tribe of Benjamin numbered only six hundred, and each of these men had inherited large plots of land from their deceased relatives. The verse states: “And they said: They that are escaped must be as an inheritance for Benjamin, that a tribe be not blotted out from Israel” (Judges 21:17).

אמר רבי יצחק דבי רבי אמי מלמד שהתנו על שבט בנימין שלא תירש בת הבן עם האחין

Rabbi Yitzḥak of the house of Rabbi Ami says: This teaches that the elders of that generation stipulated with regard to the tribe of Benjamin that a daughter of a son shall not inherit with the brothers of her father. Since the daughter of a son who inherits her grandfather’s property may later bequeath it to her husband, who may be from another tribe, the elders instituted this temporary ordinance in order to ensure that other tribes would not inherit large quantities of land belonging to the tribe of Benjamin, lest the tribe of Benjamin be left with little land of its own.

אמר רבי יוחנן משום ר' שמעון בן יוחאי כל שאינו מניח בן ליורשו הקדוש ברוך הוא מלא עליו עברה כתיב הכא (במדבר כז, ח) והעברתם את נחלתו וכתיב התם (צפניה א, טו) יום עברה היום ההוא

§ The Gemara presents a related statement. Rabbi Yoḥanan says in the name of Rabbi Shimon ben Yoḥai: Concerning anyone who does not leave behind a son to inherit from him, the Holy One, Blessed be He, is filled with wrath [evra] toward him, as it is written here: “If a man die, and he has no son, then you shall pass his inheritance [veha’avartem] to his daughter” (Numbers 27:8), and it is written there: “That day is a day of wrath [evra]” (Zephaniah 1:15). The words “veha’avartem” and “evra” share common root letters, whereby Rabbi Shimon ben Yoḥai interprets that God’s wrath may be the result of the inheritance passing to a daughter rather than a son.

(תהלים נה, כ) אשר אין חליפות למו ולא יראו אלהים רבי יוחנן ורבי יהושע בן לוי חד אמר כל שאינו מניח בן וחד אמר כל שאינו מניח תלמיד

The Gemara presents a related statement. Concerning the verse: “God shall hear, and humble them, even He that is enthroned of old, Selah; those that have no exchange, and fear not God” (Psalms 55:20), Rabbi Yoḥanan and Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi each interpret the verse in a different manner. One says that this is a reference to anyone who does not leave behind a son to inherit from him, as he does not leave anyone to serve in exchange, i.e., as a replacement, for him; and one says that this is a reference to anyone who does not leave behind a student to serve in exchange for him.

תסתיים רבי יוחנן דאמר תלמיד דאמר רבי יוחנן דין גרמיה דעשיראה ביר תסתיים דרבי יוחנן דאמר תלמיד

The Gemara suggests: It may be concluded that it was Rabbi Yoḥanan who says that the verse is referring to one who does not leave behind a student, for Rabbi Yoḥanan, whose ten sons died in his lifetime, said to those he would console: This is the bone of my tenth son, to encourage them not to succumb to their sorrow. Since Rabbi Yoḥanan knew that he would not leave any sons to inherit his property, it is reasonable to assume that he interpreted the verse as meaning that God is full of wrath toward one who does not leave behind a student. The Gemara comments that it may be concluded that it was Rabbi Yoḥanan who says that the verse is referring to one who does not leave behind a student.

ומדרבי יוחנן אמר תלמיד רבי יהושע בן לוי אמר בן

The Gemara notes: And from this, that Rabbi Yoḥanan is the one who says that the verse is referring to one who does not leave behind a student, it follows that Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi says the verse is referring to one who does not leave behind a son.

והא רבי יהושע בן לוי לא אזיל לבי טמיא אלא לבי מאן דשכיב בלא בני דכתיב (ירמיהו כב, י) בכו בכה להולך ואמר רב יהודה אמר רב להולך בלא בן זכר אלא רבי יהושע בן לוי הוא דאמר תלמיד

The Gemara asks: But this cannot be, as Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi would not go to a house of mourning [bei tamya] to console the bereaved so as not to interrupt his studies, except to the house of one who died without any sons, as it is written: “Weep not for the dead, neither bemoan him; but weep sore for him that goes away” (Jeremiah 22:10), and Rabbi Yehuda says that Rav says that the verse is referring to one who departs from this world without leaving behind a male child. From the fact that Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi would console specifically one who died without leaving a son, it is apparent that he does not hold that God is full of wrath toward such an individual. Rather, it must be that Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi is the Sage who says that the verse is referring to one who does not leave behind a student.

ומדר' יהושע בן לוי הוא דאמר תלמיד רבי יוחנן אמר בן

The Gemara notes: And from this that Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi is the one who says that the verse is referring to one who does not leave behind a student, it follows that Rabbi Yoḥanan says it is referring to one who does not leave behind a son.

קשיא דרבי יוחנן אדרבי יוחנן לא קשיא הא דידיה הא דרביה:

The Gemara asks: This poses a difficulty from one statement of Rabbi Yoḥanan, that the verse is referring to one who does not leave behind a son, to another statement of Rabbi Yoḥanan, as he would say: This is the bone of my tenth son. The Gemara answers: It is not difficult: This statement, with regard to the bone of his son, is his, while that statement, with regard to the verse, is his teacher’s.

סימן הדד עני וחכם:

§ The Gemara continues with three homiletic interpretations by Rabbi Pineḥas ben Ḥama, and provides a mnemonic to facilitate the memorization of these expositions: Hadad, poverty, and sage.

דרש רבי פנחס בן חמא מאי דכתיב (מלכים א יא, כא) והדד שמע במצרים כי שכב דוד עם אבותיו וכי מת יואב שר הצבא מפני מה בדוד נאמרה בו שכיבה וביואב נאמרה בו מיתה דוד שהניח בן נאמרה בו שכיבה יואב שלא הניח בן נאמרה בו מיתה

The Gemara presents the first homiletic interpretation: Rabbi Pineḥas ben Ḥama interpreted a verse homiletically: What is the meaning of that which is written: “And when Hadad heard in Egypt that David slept with his fathers, and that Joab the captain of the host was dead” (I Kings 11:21)? For what reason is it that in the case of King David, sleeping was stated with regard to his demise, and in the case of Joab, death was stated with regard to his demise? He answers: Concerning King David, who left a son behind, sleeping was stated with regard to his demise, as it was not a complete death, while concerning Joab, who did not leave a son behind, death was stated with regard to his demise, as he left no son to succeed him.

ויואב לא הניח בן והכתיב (עזרא ח, ט) מבני יואב עובדיה בן יחיאל אלא דוד שהניח בן כמותו נאמרה בו שכיבה יואב שלא הניח בן כמותו נאמרה בו מיתה

The Gemara asks: And is it so that Joab did not leave a son behind; but isn’t it written: “Of the sons of Joab: Obadiah, son of Jehiel” (Ezra 8:9)? Rather, concerning King David, who left a son as great as himself, sleeping was stated with regard to his demise, but concerning Joab, who did not leave a son as great as himself, death was stated with regard to his demise.

דרש ר' פנחס בן חמא קשה עניות בתוך ביתו של אדם יותר מחמשים מכות שנאמר (איוב יט, כא) חנוני חנוני אתם רעי כי יד אלוה נגעה בי וקא אמרי ליה חבריה (איוב לו, כא) השמר אל תפן אל און כי על זה בחרת מעוני

The Gemara presents the second homiletic interpretation: Rabbi Pineḥas ben Ḥama interpreted a verse homiletically, and derived that poverty in a person’s household is more difficult than fifty plagues, as it is stated: “Have pity upon me, have pity upon me, O you my friends; for the hand of God has touched me” (Job 19:21), and his friends were saying to him: “Take heed, regard not iniquity; for this have you chosen rather than poverty” (Job 36:21). Job, who suffered many plagues, was told by his friends that his suffering was preferable to poverty.

דרש ר' פנחס בר חמא כל שיש לו חולה בתוך ביתו ילך אצל חכם ויבקש עליו רחמים שנא' (משלי טז, יד) חמת מלך מלאכי מות ואיש חכם יכפרנה:

The Gemara presents the third homiletic interpretation: Rabbi Pineḥas bar Ḥama interpreted a verse homiletically: Anyone who has a sick person in his home should go to a sage, and the sage will ask for mercy on the sick person’s behalf, as it is stated: “The wrath of a king is as messengers of death; but a wise man will pacify it” (Proverbs 16:14).

זה הכלל כל הקודם בנחלה יוצאי ירכו קודמין והאב קודם לכל יוצאי ירכו: בעי רמי בר חמא אבי האב ואחי האב כגון אברהם וישמעאל בנכסי עשו איזה מהן קודם אמר רבא תא שמע האב קודם לכל יוצאי ירכו ורמי בר חמא

§ The mishna teaches that this is the principle: Concerning anyone who precedes another with regard to inheritance, his descendants precede the other as well, and a father precedes all of his descendants. Rami bar Ḥama raises a dilemma: With regard to the claim of a father of the deceased’s father and the claim of the brother of the deceased’s father, such as the claims of Abraham and Ishmael to the property of Esau, who was Abraham’s grandson and Ishmael’s nephew, which of them precedes the other and inherits the property? Rava said: Come and hear a proof from the mishna: A father precedes all of his descendants, therefore, Abraham would inherit, as Ishmael was his descendant. The Gemara asks: And why did Rami bar Ḥama have a dilemma; was he not aware of the statement of the mishna?