Bava Metzia 39b:8בבא מציעא ל״ט ב
The William Davidson Talmudתלמוד מהדורת ויליאם דוידסון
Toggle Reader Menu Display Settings
39bל״ט ב

ואפילו הגדיל

And even if one continues to occupy the field after the minor reached majority, he does not assume presumptive ownership, as perhaps the minor was unaware that he is the field’s owner.

ולא אמרן אלא באחי דאבא אבל באחי דאמא לית לן בה ואחי דאבא נמי לא אמרן אלא בארעתא אבל בבתי לית לן בה ובארעתא נמי לא אמרן אלא דלא עביד עיטדא אבל עביד עיטדא קלא אית לה

The Gemara comments: And we said only in the case of paternal brothers that the court does not authorize a relative to descend and manage the property of a minor, as they are potential heirs. But in the case of maternal brothers we have no problem with it, as they are not potential heirs. And in the case of paternal brothers, we said that the court does not authorize a relative only with regard to land. But in the case of houses we have no problem with it, as there are neighbors who can testify that the house does not belong to those brothers. And with regard to land too, we said that it is only in a case where the minor’s father did not draft a document of division of the property that the court does not authorize a relative. But in a case where the minor’s father drafted a document of division, it generates publicity, and everyone knows which portion belongs to each of the brothers.

ולא היא לא שנא אחי דאבא ולא שנא אחי דאמא לא שנא ארעתא ולא שנא בתי ולא שנא עביד עיטדא לא שנא לא עביד עיטדא לא מחתינן

The Gemara concludes: But this is not so, as there is no difference whether they are paternal brothers and there is no difference whether they are maternal brothers; it is no different whether it is land, and it is no different whether it is houses; and it is no different whether he drafted a document of division, and it is no different whether he did not draft a document of division. We do not authorize a relative to descend and manage the property of a minor, to avoid that relative being regarded as the owner of the property.

ההיא סבתא דהויא לה תלת בנתא אישתבאי איהי וחדא ברתא אידך תרתי בנתא שכיבא חדא מינייהו ושבקה ינוקא אמר אביי היכי נעביד לוקמינהו לנכסי בידא דאחתא דלמא שכיבא סבתא ואין מורידין קרוב לנכסי קטן נוקמינהו לנכסיה בידא דינוקא דלמא לא שכיבא סבתא ואין מורידין קטן לנכסי שבוי

§ The Gemara relates: There was a certain old woman who had three daughters. She and one daughter were taken captive. Of the other two daughters, one died and left behind a minor son. Abaye said: What should we do in this case with the property of the old woman? If one suggests: Let us establish the property in the possession of the surviving sister, that is problematic. There is a concern that perhaps the old woman died in captivity, and if the old woman died, the minor inherits one-third of her property, and the court does not authorize a relative to descend and manage the property of a minor. If one suggests: Let us establish the property in the possession of the minor, that is also problematic. There is concern that perhaps the old woman did not die, and the court does not authorize a minor to descend and manage the property of a captive.

אמר אביי הלכך פלגא יהבינא לה לאחתא ואידך פלגא מוקמינן ליה אפוטרופא לינוקא רבא אמר מגו דמוקמינן אפוטרופא לפלגא מוקמינן ליה אפוטרופא לאידך פלגא

Abaye said: Consequently, half of the property is given to the surviving sister. If the captives died, she is the inheritor of half the property; if the captives are alive, this is a case where the court authorizes a relative to descend and manage the property of a captive. And for the other half of the property, we establish a steward on behalf of the minor, as it is conceivable that he inherited the property. Rava said: Once we appoint a steward for half of the property, we appoint a steward for the other half of the property, and it remains under his stewardship until the state of the captives becomes known.

לסוף שמעו דשכיבא סבתא אמר אביי תילתא יהבינן לה לאחתא ותילתא יהבינן ליה לינוקא ואידך תילתא יהבינן דנקא לאחתא ואידך דנקא מוקמינן ליה אפוטרופא לינוקא רבא אמר מגו דמוקים אפוטרופא לדנקא מוקמינן נמי אפוטרופא לאידך דנקא

Ultimately, they heard that that old woman died, and they did not hear the fate of the captive daughter. Abaye said: We give one-third of the property to the surviving daughter. And we give one-third of the property to the minor, as he inherits it from his grandmother by virtue of his deceased mother. And of the other one-third of the property, which belongs to the captive sister whose fate is unknown, we give one-sixth [danka] to the surviving sister, and for the other one-sixth, we appoint a steward on behalf of the minor, as perhaps the sister died and the property is his. Rava said: Once we appoint a steward for one-sixth of the property, we also appoint a steward for the other one-sixth of the property, until the fate of the captive sister is known.

מרי בר איסק אתא ליה אחא מבי חוזאי א"ל פלוג לי אמר ליה לא ידענא לך

§ The Gemara relates: Mari bar Isak, who was a wealthy and powerful man, had a brother whom he did not previously know, come to him from Bei Ḥozai, which was distant from central Babylonia. His brother said to him: Divide the property that you inherited from our father and give half to me, as I am your brother. Mari said to him: I do not know who you are.

אתא לקמיה דרב חסדא א"ל שפיר קאמר לך שנאמר (בראשית מב, ח) ויכר יוסף את אחיו והם לא הכירוהו מלמד שיצא בלא חתימת זקן ובא בחתימת זקן א"ל זיל אייתי סהדי דאחוה את אמר ליה אית לי סהדי ודחלי מיניה דגברא אלימא הוא א"ל לדידיה זיל אנת אייתי סהדי דלאו אחוך הוא

The case came before Rav Ḥisda. He said to the brother: Mari bar Isak spoke well to you, as it is stated: “And Joseph knew his brothers and they knew him not” (Genesis 42:8). This teaches that Joseph left Eretz Yisrael without the trace of a beard, and he came with the trace of a beard. This proves that it is possible for brothers not to recognize each other. Mari bar Isak may be telling the truth when he claims he does not recognize you. Rav Ḥisda said to the brother: Go bring witnesses that you are his brother. The brother said to him: I have witnesses, but they fear Mari bar Isak because he is a violent man. Rav Ḥisda said to Mari bar Isak: You go bring witnesses that he is not your brother.

א"ל דינא הכי המוציא מחבירו עליו הראיה א"ל הכי דיינינא לך ולכל אלימי דחברך אמר ליה סוף סוף אתו סהדי ולא מסהדי א"ל תרתי לא עבדי

Mar bar Isak said to him: Is this the halakha? Isn’t there a principle in these cases that the burden of proof rests upon the claimant? Rav Ḥisda said to him: This is the way I judge you and all of your fellow violent people. Mari bar Isak said to him: Ultimately, if that is your concern, witnesses will come, and they will not testify in his favor. They will lie and testify in my favor. Rav Ḥisda said to him: They will not perform two wrongs; they will not refrain from telling the truth and also testify falsely.

לסוף אתו סהדי דאחוה הוא א"ל לפלוג לי נמי מפרדיסי ובוסתני דשתל אמר ליה שפיר קאמר לך דתנן הניח בנים גדולים וקטנים והשביחו גדולים את הנכסים השביחו לאמצע

Ultimately, witnesses came and testified that the person from Bei Ḥozai was his brother. At that point, the brother said to Mari bar Isak: Divide and give me half of the orchards and the gardens that you planted since the death of our father as well. Rav Ḥisda said to Mari bar Isak: He spoke well to you, as we learned in a mishna (Bava Batra 143b): If one died and left adult and minor sons, and the adult sons enhanced the property, they enhanced the property, and the profit goes to the middle, i.e., it is divided between the adult sons and the minor sons.