Bava Kamma 88a:7בבא קמא פ״ח א:ז
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88aפ״ח א

דאפחתה מכספה אבל פציעה דלא אפחתה מכספה לא קמיבעיא ליה

by which he lowered her monetary value, diminishing the amount of money that her father will receive for her betrothal. But with regard to a wound, by which he did not lower her monetary value, Rabbi Elazar did not even raise a dilemma.

א"ר יוסי בר חנינא שפצעה בפניה ואפחתה מכספה:

Rabbi Yosei bar Ḥanina said: Rabbi Yoḥanan is discussing a case where someone wounded her on her face, and he thereby lowered her monetary value, as this affects the amount of money that her father will receive for her betrothal.

החובל בעבד כנעני של אחרים חייב וכו': מאי טעמא דרבי יהודה אמר קרא (דברים כה, יא) כי ינצו אנשים יחדיו איש ואחיו במי שיש לו אחוה יצא עבד שאין לו אחוה ורבנן אחיו הוא במצות

§ The mishna teaches: One who injures a Canaanite slave belonging to others is liable for all of the five types of indemnity. Rabbi Yehuda says: Canaanite slaves do not have humiliation, so one who injures a slave pays only the other four types of indemnity. What is the reasoning of Rabbi Yehuda? The Gemara explains: The verse states with regard to the indemnity of humiliation: “When men strive together, a man and his brother” (Deuteronomy 25:11). The formulation “and his brother” teaches that the payment of compensation for humiliation is applicable with regard to someone who has a relationship of brotherhood with a Jew. This is excluding a Canaanite slave, who does not have a relationship of brotherhood with Jews. And the Sages, who hold that a Canaanite slave is included in the halakhot of compensation for humiliation, maintain that he is the Jews’ brother with regard to the observance of mitzvot, as a Canaanite slave is obligated to observe most mitzvot.

אלא מעתה לר' יהודה זוממי עבד לא יהרוגו דכתיב (דברים יט, יט) ועשיתם לו כאשר זמם לעשות לאחיו אמר רבא אמר רב ששת אמר קרא (דברים יט, יט) ובערת הרע מקרבך מכל מקום

The Gemara challenges: If that is so, then according to Rabbi Yehuda, who holds that slaves are not in the category of brothers, conspiring witnesses who testify that a Canaanite slave committed a sin punishable by capital punishment should not be put to death by the court, as it is written: “You shall do unto him as he conspired to do unto his brother” (Deuteronomy 19:19), and the slave is not considered a brother. Rava said that Rav Sheshet said: The same verse states with regard to conspiring witnesses: “And you shall put away the evil from your midst,” indicating that the punishment for conspiring witnesses should be applied in any case, including when they testified about a slave.

אלא מעתה לרבנן עבד יהא כשר למלכות אמרי ולטעמיך תיקשי לך גר לדברי הכל אלא אמר קרא (דברים יז, טו) מקרב אחיך ממובחר שבאחיך

The Gemara raises another challenge: If that is so, then according to the Sages, who hold that slaves are in the category of brothers, a Canaanite slave should be fit for kingship, as it is written: “One from among your brothers shall you set a king over you” (Deuteronomy 17:15). The Sages say in response: But according to your reasoning, the halakha disqualifying a convert from being king should pose a difficulty for you according to all opinions, both according to the opinion of the Sages and of Rabbi Yehuda: Why is a convert not fit to be a king, as he is certainly in the category of brother? The Gemara answers: Rather, the verse states: “One from among your brothers shall you set a king over you,” which indicates that the king must be from the choicest among your brothers, which disqualifies both converts and slaves.

אלא מעתה לרבנן יהא עבד כשר לעדות דכתיב (דברים יט, יח) והנה עד שקר העד שקר ענה באחיו

The Gemara challenges further: If that is so, then according to the Sages, who hold that slaves are in the category of brothers, a Canaanite slave should be fit to bear witness, as it is written: “And behold, the witness is a false witness, and has testified falsely against his brother” (Deuteronomy 19:18). If a slave is considered a brother, why is he not eligible to testify in court?

אמר עולא עדות לא מצית אמרת אתיא עדות בקל וחומר מאשה ומה אשה שהיא ראויה לבא בקהל פסולה לעדות עבד שאינו ראוי לבא בקהל אינו דין שפסול לעדות

Ulla said: You cannot say that a slave is fit to bear witness, because the halakha concerning the testimony of a slave is derived by an a fortiori inference from the halakha concerning the testimony of a woman: And just as a woman, who is fit to enter into the congregation, i.e., to marry a Jew of fit lineage, is nevertheless disqualified from bearing witness, so too, with regard to a slave, who is not fit to enter the congregation, is it not logical that he is disqualified from bearing witness?

מה לאשה שכן אינה ראויה למילה תאמר בעבד שהוא ראוי למילה קטן יוכיח שישנו במילה ופסול לעדות

The Gemara counters this derivation: What is notable about a woman? She is notable in that she is not fit to undergo the mitzva of circumcision. Would you say that from the fact that a woman is disqualified from bearing witness one can derive that the same is true for a slave, who is fit to undergo circumcision? The Gemara responds: The halakha of a minor shall prove that one’s fitness to undergo circumcision is not germane to one’s qualification to bear witness, as a minor is included in the mitzva to undergo circumcision, and yet he is disqualified from bearing witness.

מה לקטן שאינו במצות תאמר בעבד שהוא במצות אשה תוכיח שישנה במצות ופסולה לעדות

This is countered: What is notable about a minor? He is notable in that he is not obligated in the performance of mitzvot. Would you say that from the fact that a minor is disqualified from bearing witness one can derive that the same is true for a slave, who is obligated in the performance of mitzvot? The Gemara responds: The halakha of a woman shall prove the matter, as she is obligated in the performance of mitzvot and is disqualified from bearing witness.

וחזר הדין לא ראי זה כראי זה ולא ראי זה כראי זה הצד השוה שבהן שכן אינן בכל המצות ופסולין להעיד אף אני אביא את העבד שאינו בכל המצות ופסול להעיד

And the derivation has reverted to its starting point. The aspect of this case is not like the aspect of that case, and the aspect of that case is not like the aspect of this case, as each case has its own unique halakha. Their common denominator is that both a woman and a minor are not obligated in the performance of all the mitzvot and are disqualified from bearing witness. I will also bring the case of the slave for inclusion in this halakha, as he is also not obligated in the performance of all the mitzvot and is disqualified from bearing witness.

מה להצד השוה שבהם שכן אינו איש תאמר בעבד שהוא איש

This derivation is rejected: What is notable about their common denominator? It is notable in that a woman or a minor is not a man, and this is why they are disqualified from bearing witness. Would you say that from the fact that they are disqualified from bearing witness one can derive that the same is true for a slave, who is a man?

אלא תיתי מגזלן מה לגזלן שכן מעשיו גרמו לו תאמר בעבד שאין מעשיו גרמו לו

The Gemara offers a different derivation: Rather, derive the halakha that a slave is disqualified from bearing witness from that of a robber, who is disqualified from bearing witness. The Gemara objects: What is notable about a robber? He is notable in that his actions caused him to be disqualified. Would you say that from the fact that a robber is disqualified from bearing witness one can derive that the same is true for a slave, whose actions did not cause him to be unfit?

אלא תיתי מגזלן ומחד מהנך

The Gemara answers: Rather, derive the halakha from a robber and from one of these other two, either a woman or a minor. Their common denominator is that they do not observe all the mitzvot and are disqualified from bearing witness. So too, a slave does not observe all the mitzvot and is disqualified from bearing witness.

מר בריה דרבינא אמר אמר קרא (דברים כד, טז) לא יומתו אבות על בנים לא יומתו על פי אבות שאין להם חייס בנים דאי ס"ד כדאמרינן לא יומתו אבות על בנים בעדות בנים לכתוב רחמנא לא יומתו אבות על בניהם מאי בנים ש"מ דלא יומתו ע"פ אבות שאין להם חייס בנים

Mar, son of Ravina, said another derivation. The verse states: “Fathers shall not be put to death for children” (Deuteronomy 24:16), meaning that people shall not be put to death based on the testimony of fathers who do not have common lineage [ḥayis] with their children. This is referring to Canaanite slaves, whose children are not considered to be related to them. For if it enters your mind to interpret the verse according to its straightforward meaning, as we say: “Fathers shall not be put to death for children,” meaning by the testimony of their children, then let the Merciful One write: Fathers shall not be put to death for their children. What does the verse teach by stating only: “Children,” without the word their? Learn from this formulation that people shall not be put to death based on the testimony of fathers who do not have common lineage with their children.

אלא מעתה ובנים לא יומתו על אבות ה"נ לא יומתו ע"פ בנים שאין להם חייס אבות אלא גר ה"נ דפסול לעדות

The Gemara challenges this: If that is so, when the end of the verse states: “Nor shall children be put to death for fathers” (Deuteronomy 24:16), does this also mean that people shall not be put to death based on the testimony of children who do not have common lineage with their fathers? But if that were the case, it would also be the case that a convert would be disqualified from bearing witness, as one who converts no longer shares common lineage with his parents.

אמרי הכי השתא גר נהי דאין לו חייס למעלה למטה יש לו חייס לאפוקי עבד דאין לו חייס לא למעלה ולא למטה

The Sages say in response: How can these cases be compared? With regard to a convert, although he has no common lineage with those above him, i.e., his parents, he does have common lineage with those below him, i.e., his children. This serves to exclude a slave, who has no common lineage either with those above him or with those below him.

דאי סלקא דעתך גר פסול לעדות לכתוב רחמנא לא יומתו אבות על בניהם לכדאמרינן לא יומתו בעדות בנים ונכתוב רחמנא ובנים לא יומתו על אבות דשמעת מינה תרי חדא לא יומתו בנים בעדות אבות ואידך לא יומתו על פי בנים שאין להם חייס אבות

The Sages prove that a convert is fit to bear witness: As, if it enters your mind that a convert is disqualified from bearing witness, then let the Merciful One write: Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, according to the interpretation that we say: Fathers shall not be put to death based on the testimony of their children; and let the Merciful One also write: “Nor shall children be put to death for fathers,” from which you learn two halakhot: One, that children shall not be put to death by the testimony of their fathers, and another, that people shall not be put to death based on the testimony of children who do not have common lineage with their fathers, i.e., converts.

ועבד נפקא ליה בקל וחומר מגר ומה גר דלמעלה הוא דאין לו חייס אבל למטה יש לו חייס פסול לעדות עבד שאין לו חייס לא למעלה ולא למטה אינו דין שיהא פסול לעדות

The Gemara continues the statement: And the halakha with regard to a slave being disqualified from bearing witness is derived by an a fortiori inference from the halakha of a convert: And just as with regard to a convert, that it is the case concerning those above him that he has no common lineage, but with those below him he does have common lineage, and he is disqualified from bearing witness, then with regard to a slave, who has no common lineage with those above him or those below him, all the more so is it not logical that he is disqualified from bearing witness?

אלא מדכתב רחמנא לא יומתו אבות על בנים דמשמע לא יומתו על פי אבות שאין לו חייס בנים שמע מינה עבד שאין לו חייס לא למעלה ולא למטה הוא דפסול לעדות אבל גר כיון דיש לו חייס למטה כשר לעדות

The Gemara continues the statement: Rather, due to the fact that the Merciful One did not write the verse that way, but instead wrote: “Fathers shall not be put to death for children,” which indicates that people shall not be put to death based on the testimony of fathers who do not have common lineage with their children, learn from this formulation that with regard to a slave, who has no common lineage with those above him or those below him, he is the one who is disqualified from bearing witness. But with regard to a convert, since he has common lineage with those below him, he is fit to bear witness.

וכ"ת לכתוב רחמנא ובנים לא יומתו על אבותיהם למה לי דכתב רחמנא ובנים לא יומתו על אבות דמשמע לא יומתו על פי בנים שאין להם חיים אבות איידי דכתב לא יומתו אבות על בנים כתב נמי ובנים לא יומתו על אבות:

And if you would say: Let the Merciful One write: Nor shall children be put to death for their fathers, why do I need that which the Merciful One wrote: “Nor shall children be put to death for fathers,” which indicates that people shall not be put to death based on the testimony of children who do not have common lineage with their fathers? The Gemara answers: Since the Merciful One wrote: “Fathers shall not be put to death for children,” He also wrote in the same manner: “Nor shall children be put to death for fathers.”

חרש שוטה וקטן פגיעתן רעה: אימיה דרב שמואל בר אבא מהגרוניא הות נסיבא ליה לר' אבא כתבתינהו לנכסי לרב שמואל בר אבא ברה בתר דשכיבא

§ The mishna (87a) teaches: With regard to a deaf-mute, an imbecile, or a minor, an encounter with them is disadvantageous, since one who injures them is liable. But if they were the ones who injured, they are exempt. The Gemara relates an incident: The mother of Rav Shmuel bar Abba from the city of Hagroneya was married to Rabbi Abba. She wrote, i.e., signed over, her property to Rav Shmuel bar Abba, her son. After she died,