איכו השתא אשתלאי ואמרי לך רב ורבי יוחנן הלכה כרבי יוחנן הא אמר רבא הלכתא כותיה דרב בהני תלת בין לקולא בין לחומרא
Had I issued a ruling for you then, I would have forgotten the correct response, and I would have said to you, based on the accepted principle that in the case of a dispute between Rav and Rabbi Yoḥanan, the halakha is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yoḥanan, that the eggs are permitted. However, Rava said: The halakha is in accordance with the opinion of Rav with regard to these three issues, in connection to the sanctity of Festivals and Shabbat, whether his ruling is lenient, or whether it is stringent. This is one of those three cases in which the halakha is in accordance with the opinion of Rav.
אמר רבי יוחנן עצים שנשרו מן הדקל בשבת אסור להסיקן ביום טוב ואל תשיבני ביצה מאי טעמא ביצה משום דביומא נמי חזיא לגומעה ולא קא שרי לה עד למחר מידע ידיע דבת יומא אסורה עצים דלא חזו ליומייהו אי שרי להו למחר אתי למימר ביומייהו נמי שרו ואתמול משום שבת הוא דלא חזו להסקה
§ Rabbi Yoḥanan said: With regard to branches that fell from a palm tree on Shabbat, it is prohibited to kindle them on a Festival that occurs the next day. And do not reply to me by asking why I permit an egg to be eaten on the following day. What is the reason for the distinction between the two cases? In the case of an egg, because on the day of Shabbat itself it is also fit to be swallowed raw and nevertheless it is permitted to be eaten only the following day, one knows that an egg is prohibited on the day it was laid. In contrast, with regard to branches, which are not fit for kindling on the day of Shabbat, as kindling a fire is prohibited, if you permit them to kindle the wood on the Festival that occurs on the following day they will mistakenly come to say that on the day that they fell off the tree they are also permitted. And as for the reason the branches were not kindled yesterday when they fell from the tree, it was due only to Shabbat, as they were not fit for kindling then.
אמר רב מתנה עצים שנשרו מן הדקל לתוך התנור ביום טוב מרבה עליהם עצים מוכנים ומסיקן והא קא מהפך באיסורא כיון דרובא דהיתרא נינהו כי קא מהפך בהיתרא קא מהפך
Rav Mattana said: With regard to branches that fell from a palm tree directly into an oven on a Festival, one may add to those branches wood prepared from the previous day, which may be used for kindling, and kindle them all together. The Gemara asks: But doesn’t he turn over and move the prohibited wood in the course of the cooking process? The Gemara answers: Since most of the wood is permitted, when he turns it over, he turns over permitted wood, as the prohibited part is nullified by the majority.
והא קא מבטל איסורא לכתחלה ותנן אין מבטלין איסור לכתחלה הני מילי בדאורייתא אבל בדרבנן מבטלין
The Gemara challenges this: But doesn’t he thereby nullify a prohibited item ab initio, by adding permitted wood to the pieces of wood that fell into the oven, which are prohibited? And we learned in a mishna (see Terumot 5:9): One may not nullify a prohibited item ab initio. The Gemara answers: That principle applies only to items prohibited by Torah law; but with regard to items prohibited by rabbinic law, as in this case involving the prohibition of muktze, one may nullify the prohibition ab initio.
ולרב אשי דאמר כל דבר שיש לו מתירין אפילו בדרבנן לא בטיל מאי איכא למימר הני מילי היכא דאיתיה לאיסורא בעיניה הכא מקלא קלי איסורא
The Gemara asks: And according to the opinion of Rav Ashi, who said: Any object whose prohibition is temporary, even if the prohibition applies by rabbinic law, it cannot be nullified, what is there to say? Doesn’t Rav Ashi agree that it is permitted to kindle the wood after the Festival? The Gemara answers: That principle applies only where the prohibited item remains intact; here, however, the prohibited item is burned, as the wood is turned over when it has already become charcoal. Therefore, one does not perform any action with prohibited items.
אתמר שני ימים טובים של גליות רב אמר נולדה בזה מותרת בזה ורב אסי אמר נולדה בזה אסורה בזה
§ It was stated that there is a dispute between amora’im with regard to the halakha for the two Festival days observed in the Diaspora. Rav said: An egg that was laid on this day is permitted on that one, and Rav Asi said: An egg that was laid on this day is prohibited on that one.
לימא קא סבר רב אסי קדושה אחת היא והא רב אסי מבדיל מיומא טבא לחבריה
The Gemara asks: Let us say that Rav Asi holds that the two days are one sanctity. But didn’t Rav Asi himself recite havdala, the prayer of distinction at the end of a holy day, from one Festival day of the Diaspora to the other? This shows that, in his opinion, the first day is the true Festival, while the second day is considered a weekday. In earlier generations, they observed the second day of the Diaspora because they were unaware when the court sanctified the New Moon to mark the beginning of the month. Today, that determination is accomplished by means of calculations known to all, and the second day is observed as the custom of our fathers, not due to any uncertainty.
רב אסי ספוקי מספקא ליה ועביד הכא לחומרא והכא לחומרא
The Gemara answers: Rav Asi was uncertain whether the Sages’ ordinance that the second day is to be observed as a Festival was a fixed ordinance that applies even when the calculations determining the New Moon are known to all; or whether the ordinance was based strictly on the uncertainty stemming from their lack of awareness. Today, when everyone is aware of the beginning of the month, the second day is a weekday. And therefore he acted stringently here, and prohibited eating an egg on the second day that had been laid on the first day. And he also acted stringently here, and recited havdala between the two days.
אמר ר' זירא כותיה דרב אסי מסתברא דהאידנא ידעינן בקביעא דירחא וקא עבדינן תרי יומי
Rabbi Zeira said: It is reasonable to say in accordance with the opinion of Rav Asi that the Sages considered the two days as one and it is not a practice instituted due to uncertainty, as today we know the determination of the first day of the new month based on a fixed calendar and the precise dates of the Festivals are known by all, and nevertheless we observe the two Festival days of the Diaspora.
אמר אביי כותיה דרב מסתברא דתנן בראשונה היו משיאין משואות משקלקלו הכותים התקינו שיהו שלוחין יוצאין
Abaye said: On the contrary, It is reasonable to say in accordance with the opinion of Rav that the second day is observed as a Festival due to uncertainty, as we learned in a mishna (Rosh HaShana 22b): Initially, after the court sanctified the new month, they would light torches on the mountain tops, from one peak to another, to signal that the New Moon had been sanctified. After the Samaritans [Kutim] disrupted this method by lighting torches at the wrong times, the Sages instituted that messengers should depart to inform the people of the start of the month. Since the messengers could not reach all Diaspora communities before the beginning of the Festival, the Sages instituted that an additional Festival day should be observed there, due to the resultant uncertainty with regard to which day was the actual Festival day.
ואילו בטלו כותים עבדינן חד יומא והיכא דמטו שלוחין עבדינן חד יומא
Abaye continues his argument: And this indicates that if the Samaritans had desisted from their interference, the Sages would have restored the earlier custom and we would observe only one day. And, similarly, in a place where the messengers arrived from Jerusalem on time, we observe only one Festival day.
והשתא דידעינן בקביעא דירחא מאי טעמא עבדינן תרי יומי משום דשלחו מתם הזהרו במנהג אבותיכם בידיכם זמנין דגזרו המלכות גזרה ואתי לאקלקולי
The Gemara asks: And now that we know the determination of the first day of the new month, what is the reason that we observe two Festival days in the Diaspora? Because they sent a warning from there, from Eretz Yisrael: Although now there is a fixed calendar and there is no uncertainty, be careful to observe the custom of your fathers that you received, because at times the monarchy will issue decrees of persecution restricting Torah study and the fixed calendar may be forgotten. And the people will come to have their proper observance of the Festivals be disrupted again. However, the fundamental halakha is that the observance of two Festival days is based on uncertainty.
אתמר שני ימים טובים של ראש השנה רב ושמואל דאמרי תרוייהו נולדה בזה אסורה בזה דתנן בראשונה היו מקבלין עדות החדש כל היום (כולו) פעם אחת נשתהו העדים לבא
§ It was further stated that the amora’im discussed a similar problem, with regard to the two Festival days of Rosh HaShana. Rav and Shmuel both said: An egg laid on this day is prohibited on that one, as the two days of Rosh HaShana have a special status. As we learned in a mishna (Rosh HaShana 30b): Initially, the court would accept testimony of witnesses who saw the new moon to establish the first day of the new month. This system would also be used for the first of Tishrei, which is Rosh HaShana, and the court would accept this testimony on the entire thirtieth day of the month of Elul. Once, the witnesses tarried and managed to arrive only when the hour was late,