My heart truly goes out to this woman. She just wants a drink of wine (I’m sure she’d prefer beer). And the heartless man wants to betroth her for it. Luckily, R. Hama again rules that she is not betrothed.
Different story, same ruling.
What if she only says the phrase once, not twice, as she said in the cases above? Amoraim differ on this question but the halakhah is that she is still not betrothed. We need a more solid affirmation that she is consenting to betrothal.
The passage ends with three halakhic rulings concerning sugyot that we have learned over the last daf.
1) If a man gives a woman an object such as silk as kiddushin, it need not be evaluated before he gives it to her.
2) The law follows R. Elazar who said that if the man said he was betrothing her with a maneh and gave her a dinar she is betrothed and he owes her the rest.
3) The law follows R. Nachman—if he promised her money but only gave collateral she is not betrothed.
Today’s daf begins to discuss how kiddushin is done by document. Up until now we have only been discussing kiddushin with money or goods.
Interestingly, when it comes to marriage by document, the cases are all where the husband gives the document to the father of the girl being married, and he marries his daughter off. This can only occur while she is a minor. I am not sure if this is reflective of reality. In any case, these three phrases count as the language of kiddushin. The baraita also notes that the physical apparatus on which the formula is written need not be worth anything. If it is worth a perutah, this could be kiddushin by money.
R. Zera b. Mammel notes an anomaly. Generally when a person sells something, the seller writes out a document. Here, the one acquiring, the husband, writes out a document. Why doesn’t she write the document saying that she is betrothed to So-and-so? Or her father should write the document?
Rava resolves the difficulty by noting that in the case of selling possessions, the Torah describes the seller as selling his field. Whereas when it comes to marriage, the husband takes a wife. I might note that this is essentially noting that marriage is not really a “sale.” It is an acquisition but no one is really selling anything.
The Talmud notes that elsewhere the Tanakh describes a sale from the vantage point of the acquirer. So why then does the seller write the document.
At first the resolution is to revocalize the text so that it reads “they shall transfer,” referring to the seller. The problem is that there is no compelling reason to read the text this way. And if we’re going to revocalize texts, we can do so with the text about marriage too, reading it as if it says, “If [a father] causes (yakiah) a woman to be taken by a man.” Furthermore, there is a verse that describes marriage from the viewpoint of the man whose daughter is getting married. Why, then, doesn’t he, or if she is old enough, she, write the document?
Rava ends up concluding that the rule that the husband writes the document is a tradition supported by a verse, but not one that originates in the verse. In other words, this is just how things are done.
Alternatively, there is another verse that ascribes the writing of sales documents to the seller. This would tip the scales in favor of this document being written by the seller.
The Talmud continues to discuss betrothal by document.
If she has not yet reached majority age, then her father must consent to her betrothal.
If she is of age, then she must be the one that consents to the betrothal. Note that what matters is not who physically accepts the deed. What is determinative is who consented to the betrothal.
R. Shimon b. Lakish asks whether the document used for betrothal must be written expressly for this woman. Meaning if he finds a piece of paper on which it is written, “Your daughter be betrothed to me” can he just pick it up and use it to betroth whatever girl he wants.
A get must be written with the particular divorcee in mind. So does the same law apply to the deed of betrothal? Or might we say that just as the money does not need to be “for her sake,” neither does the deed of betrothal?