איבו אמרה וארבעי אמר בה וחדא מינייהו עבודה
It was Aivu who said this statement in the name of Reish Lakish and not Rabbi Abbahu, and he said four halakhot, not three, with regard to the measure of four mil, and the fourth one of them is the halakha mentioned in the mishna: Skins that one spread on the ground and trod upon for the period required for tanning, i.e., the amount of time it takes to walk four mil, are no longer classified as flesh and are ritually pure.
א"ר יוסי בר' חנינא לא שנו אלא לפניו אבל לאחריו אפילו מיל אחד אינו חוזר רב אחא בר יעקב אמר ומינה מיל הוא דאינו חוזר הא פחות ממיל חוזר:
Rabbi Yosei, son of Rabbi Ḥanina, says: With regard to prayer and washing one’s hands, the Sages taught that one must travel four mil to find a synagogue or water only if the synagogue or the water is ahead of him, in the direction that he is traveling. But if it is behind him, he need not return even one mil. Rav Aḥa bar Yaakov said: From this statement one may infer that it is specifically a mil that one need not return; but one must return for a synagogue or water that is at a distance of less than one mil.
ת"ר ליגיון העובר ממקום למקום ונכנס לבית הבית טמא שאין לך כל ליגיון וליגיון שאין לו כמה קרקפלין ואל תתמה שהרי קרקפלו של ר' ישמעאל מונח בראש מלכים:
§The mishna states that the skin of a human corpse is impure like its flesh. The Sages taught in the Tosefta (8:16): In the case of a legion traveling for warfare from place to place, and one member of the legion enters a house, the house is impure, as there is no legion that does not have several scalps that its soldiers carry around for witchcraft. And you should not be surprised that they do so, as the scalp [karkefal] of Rabbi Yishmael was placed on the heads of kings.
מתני׳ המפשיט בבהמה ובחיה בטהורה ובטמאה בדקה ובגסה לשטיח
MISHNA: The halakhic status of the hide of an animal after it was flayed is no longer like its flesh in terms of becoming impure and imparting impurity. Nevertheless, in the case of one who flays either a domesticated animal or an undomesticated animal; a ritually pure animal that was slaughtered properly and afterward came in contact with impurity, e.g., the one flaying it is impure, or a ritually impure unslaughtered carcass; a small animal, e.g., sheep, or a large animal, e.g., cattle; and even after flaying the animal’s hide is still partially attached to the flesh, the hide’s halakhic status remains that of flesh in some circumstances.
כדי אחיזה ולחמת
These circumstances are: If he is flaying the animal for the purpose of using the hide as a carpet, a tablecloth, or to drape over a couch, in which case he would cut the hide along the length of the animal from head to tail and then remove the hide from both sides, its halakhic status remains that of flesh until he has flayed the measure of grasping the hide, i.e., two handbreadths.
עד שיפשיט את החזה
And if he is flaying the animal for the purpose of crafting a leather jug, in which case he cuts a circle near the animal’s neck and removes the hide in a downward movement, its halakhic status remains that of flesh until he flays the animal’s entire breast.
המרגיל כולו חבור לטומאה ליטמא ולטמא עור שעל הצואר רבי יוחנן בן נורי אומר אינו חבור וחכ"א חבור עד שיפשיט את כולו:
In the case of one who seeks to fashion a jug and begins flaying from the legs, until he removes the animal’s hide in its entirety, the entire hide is considered as having a connection with the flesh and its halakhic status remains that of flesh with regard to impurity, i.e., with regard to becoming impure and with regard to imparting impurity. If one removed the entire hide except for the hide over the neck, Rabbi Yoḥanan ben Nuri says: It is not considered to have a connection to the flesh, and the Rabbis say: It is considered to have a connection to the flesh until he removes the animal’s hide in its entirety, including the neck.
גמ׳ מכאן ואילך מאי
GEMARA: The mishna teaches: If one flays an animal for the purpose of making a carpet out of it, the halakhic status of the hide remains that of flesh until he has flayed the measure of grasping the hide. The Gemara asks: From that point forward, i.e., when one has flayed more than the measure of grasping of the hide, what is the status of the hide?
אמר רב טהור המופשט רבי אסי אמר טפח הסמוך לבשר טמא
Rav says: The entire section of the hide that has been flayed is pure because it no longer serves the flesh as a handle. But the hide that is still attached to the flesh serves the flesh as protection, and therefore it transmits impurity to the flesh and from the flesh, and joins together with the flesh to constitute the requisite measure to impart the impurity of food. Rabbi Asi says: One handbreadth of the flayed hide that is next to the flesh is susceptible to impurity. Since the one who flays the hide holds this handbreadth of the hide while flaying, this section of the hide serves the flesh as a handle.
מיתיבי המפשיט כשיעור הזה מכאן ואילך הנוגע במופשט טהור מאי לאו אפי' בטפח הסמוך לבשר לא לבד מטפח הסמוך לבשר
The Gemara raises an objection to the statement of Rabbi Asi from a baraita: In the case of one who flays an unslaughtered animal carcass, once he has cut the hide along the length of the animal from head to tail and then removed this measure of the hide from both sides, then from that point forward, a person who touches the flayed hide is pure, because the flayed hide does not impart impurity of a carcass. What, is it not discussing even the handbreadth of hide next to the flesh, contrary to the opinion of Rabbi Asi? The Gemara answers: No, there is no proof from this baraita, as it may be discussing the flayed hide except for the handbreadth next to the flesh.
תא שמע בעור שכנגד הבשר טמא עור שכנגד הבשר טמא הא בטפח הסמוך לבשר טהור תנא כל טפח הסמוך לבשר עור שכנגד הבשר קרי ליה
Come and hear a refutation of the opinion of Rabbi Asi from a baraita: Once an animal carcass has been flayed more than the measure of grasping the hide, if one touches the hide opposite the flesh before that hide was flayed he is impure. This statement indicates that the attached hide opposite the flesh is impure, but one handbreadth of the flayed hide that is next to the flesh is pure, contrary to the opinion of Rabbi Asi. The Gemara answers: There is no proof from this baraita. The tanna who taught this baraita was referring to the entire handbreadth of flayed hide next to the flesh by calling it the hide opposite the flesh.
ת"ש המפשיט בבהמה ובחיה בטהורה ובטמאה בדקה ובגסה לשטיח כדי אחיזה וטפח הסמוך לבשר טהור
Come and hear a refutation of the opinion of Rabbi Asi from a baraita (Tosefta 8:18): In the case of one who flays a domesticated animal or an undomesticated animal, a ritually pure animal or a ritually impure unslaughtered carcass, a small animal or a large animal, if he is flaying the animal for the purpose of using the hide as a carpet, the halakhic status of the hide remains that of flesh until he has flayed the measure of grasping it, and one who touches one handbreadth of the flayed hide next to the flesh remains pure, contrary to the opinion of Rabbi Asi.
הכא במאי עסקינן בטפח ראשון
The Gemara answers: Here we are dealing with the first handbreadth of hide that is flayed in addition to the measure of grasping. In a case where only one handbreadth of hide has been flayed in addition to the measure of grasping, it is more comfortable for the one flaying the hide to grasp the edge of the hide rather than the handbreadth of hide that is nearest to the flesh. Furthermore, the most comfortable way to continue flaying is to do so with a knife without grasping the flayed hide at all. Therefore, Rabbi Asi concedes that the hide in this case does not serve the flesh as a handle and consequently does not impart impurity. But afterward, when one has already flayed more than three handbreadths of hide, one holds the handbreadth of hide next to the flesh while continuing to flay the animal, and since it serves the flesh as a handle it imparts impurity.
תנא כמה כדי אחיזה טפח והא תניא טפחיים
§The mishna teaches that the hide’s halakhic status remains that of flesh until he has flayed the measure of grasping the hide. It was taught in a baraita: How much is the measure of grasping? It is one handbreadth. The Gemara asks: But isn’t it taught in another baraita: The measure of grasping is two handbreadths?
אמר אביי טפח כפול תניא נמי הכי כמה כדי אחיזה טפח כפול
Abaye says: The first baraita is referring to one who grasps a double handbreadth by folding the first two handbreadths together and grasping them. This explanation of Abaye is also taught in the Tosefta (8:18): How much is the measure of grasping? It is a double handbreadth.
תנן התם טלית שהתחיל בה לקורעה כיון שנקרע רובה שוב אינו חבור וטהורה
§The Gemara discusses a matter similar to the previous discussion of a partially flayed hide. We learned in a mishna elsewhere (Kelim 28:8): A ritually impure garment that tears is rendered pure because it is no longer considered a useable garment. In the case of a ritually impure garment that one began to tear, once the majority of the garment is torn, the two sections are no longer considered as having a connection, and since it is no longer considered a useable garment, it is pure.
אמר רב נחמן אמר רבה בר אבוה לא שנו אלא בטלית טבולת יום
Rav Naḥman says that Rabba bar Avuh says: The Sages taught this halakha only with regard to an impure garment that was already immersed in a ritual bath that day, but one must wait until nightfall for the purification process to be completed in order to wear the garment while eating ritually pure food. In such a case, tearing the majority of the garment renders it pure, and the Sages did not apply the requirement that the entire garment be torn.
דמיגו דלא חס עלה ואטבלה לא חייס עלה וקרע לה רובה אבל טלית שאינה טבולת יום לא גזרה דלמא לא אתי למיקרעה רובה
This is because the reason for this rabbinic decree is lest one tear only half of it out of concern for the damage to the garment. And since in this case, the owner of the garment showed that he was not concerned about damage to the garment by immersing it in a ritual bath, an act which damages the garment, so too he is presumably not concerned about the garment with regard to tearing it, and he will certainly tear the majority of it. But a garment that was not immersed that day is not rendered pure by tearing the majority of the garment due to a rabbinic decree lest one come to not tear the majority of the garment but only half of it.
אמר רבה שתי תשובות בדבר חדא שמא יאמרו טבילה בת יומא עולה ועוד
Rabba said: There are two refutations of this statement. One is that the decree should apply even to a garment that was immersed that day, lest people who see one eating ritually pure food while wearing such a garment say that immersion of a garment on the same day is sufficient for the garment to be worn while eating ritually pure food, and there is no need to wait until nightfall. And furthermore, if a garment that was not immersed that day is rendered pure only by tearing the entire garment and not by tearing merely a majority of the garment, due to a decree lest one tear less than a majority of the garment,