Ketubot 104a:2כתובות ק״ד א:ב
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104aק״ד א

דמדליא ובסים אוירא

which is situated at a high altitude and whose air is scented.

ההוא יומא דנח נפשיה דרבי גזרו רבנן תעניתא ובעו רחמי ואמרי כל מאן דאמר נח נפשיה דר' ידקר בחרב

§ It is related that on the day that Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi died, the Sages decreed a fast, and begged for divine mercy so that he would not die. And they said: Anyone who says that Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi has died will be stabbed with a sword.

סליקא אמתיה דרבי לאיגרא אמרה עליוני' מבקשין את רבי והתחתוני' מבקשין את רבי יהי רצון שיכופו תחתונים את העליונים כיון דחזאי כמה זימני דעייל לבית הכסא וחלץ תפילין ומנח להו וקמצטער אמרה יהי רצון שיכופו עליונים את התחתונים

The maidservant of Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi ascended to the roof and said: The upper realms are requesting the presence of Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi, and the lower realms are requesting the presence of Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi. May it be the will of God that the lower worlds should impose their will upon the upper worlds. However, when she saw how many times he would enter the bathroom and remove his phylacteries, and then exit and put them back on, and how he was suffering with his intestinal disease, she said: May it be the will of God that the upper worlds should impose their will upon the lower worlds.

ולא הוו שתקי רבנן מלמיבעי רחמי שקלה כוזא שדייא מאיגרא [לארעא] אישתיקו מרחמי ונח נפשיה דרבי

And the Sages, meanwhile, would not be silent, i.e., they would not refrain, from begging for mercy so that Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi would not die. So she took a jug [kuza] and threw it from the roof to the ground. Due to the sudden noise, the Sages were momentarily silent and refrained from begging for mercy, and Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi died.

אמרו ליה רבנן לבר קפרא זיל עיין אזל אשכחיה דנח נפשיה קרעיה ללבושיה ואהדריה לקרעיה לאחוריה פתח ואמר אראלים ומצוקים אחזו בארון הקדש נצחו אראלים את המצוקים ונשבה ארון הקדש אמרו ליה נח נפשיה אמר להו אתון קאמריתו ואנא לא קאמינא

The Sages said to bar Kappara: Go and ascertain the condition of Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi. He went and found that Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi had died. He tore his clothing and reversed them so that the tear would be behind him and not be noticed. When he returned to the Sages he opened his remarks and said: The angels [erelim] and righteous mortals [metzukim] both clutched the sacred ark. The angels triumphed over the righteous, and the sacred ark was captured. They said to him: Has he died? He said to them: You have said it and I did not say it, as it had been decided that no one should say that he died.

בשעת פטירתו של רבי זקף עשר אצבעותיו כלפי מעלה אמר רבש"ע גלוי וידוע לפניך שיגעתי בעשר אצבעותי בתורה ולא נהניתי אפילו באצבע קטנה יהי רצון מלפניך שיהא שלום במנוחתי יצתה ב"ק ואמרה (ישעיהו נז, ב) יבא שלום ינוחו על משכבותם

It is further related: At the time of the death of Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi, he raised his ten fingers toward Heaven and said in prayer: Master of the Universe, it is revealed and known before You that I toiled with my ten fingers in the Torah, and I have not derived any benefit from the world even with my small finger. May it be Your will that there be peace in my repose. A Divine Voice emerged and said: “He enters in peace, they rest in their beds” (Isaiah 57:2).

על משכבך מיבעי ליה מסייע ליה לר' חייא בר גמדא דאמר רבי חייא בר גמדא אמר ר' יוסי בן שאול בשעה שהצדיק נפטר מן העולם אומרים מלאכי השרת לפני הקב"ה רבש"ע צדיק פלוני בא אומר להם יבואו צדיקים ויצאו לקראתו ואומרים לו יבא בשלום ינוחו על משכבותם

The Gemara asks: Why does it say: “They rest in their beds,” in the plural? It should have said: In your bed, in the singular, as the beginning of the verse is phrased in the singular. The Gemara notes: This supports the opinion of Rabbi Ḥiyya bar Gamda. As Rabbi Ḥiyya bar Gamda said that Rabbi Yosei ben Shaul said: At the time when a righteous individual departs from the world, the ministering angels say before the Holy One, Blessed be He: Master of the Universe, the righteous individual so-and-so is coming. The Holy One, Blessed be He, then says to them: The righteous should come forth and they should go out toward him. And the righteous say to the newly deceased individual: He enters in peace, and subsequently, the righteous rest in their beds.

אמר ר' אלעזר בשעה שהצדיק נפטר מן העולם שלש כיתות של מלאכי השרת יוצאות לקראתו אחת אומרת לו בא בשלום ואחת אומרת הולך נכחו ואחת אומרת לו יבא שלום ינוחו על משכבותם בשעה שהרשע נאבד מן העולם שלש כיתות של מלאכי חבלה יוצאות לקראתו אחת אומרת (ישעיהו מח, כב) אין שלום אמר ה' לרשעים ואחת אומרת לו (ישעיהו נ, יא) למעצבה ישכב ואחת אומרת לו (יחזקאל לב, יט) רדה והשכבה את ערלים:

Rabbi Elazar said: At the time when a righteous individual departs from the world, three contingents of ministering angels go out toward him. One says to him: Enter in peace; and one says to him: Each one that walks in his uprightness; and one says to him: He enters in peace, they rest in their beds. At the time when a wicked person perishes from the world, three contingents of angels of destruction go out toward him. One says to him: “There is no peace, says the Lord concerning the wicked” (Isaiah 48:22); and one says to him: “You shall lie down in sorrow” (Isaiah 50:11); and one says to him: “Go down, and be laid with the uncircumcised” (Ezekiel 32:19).

מתני׳ כל זמן שהיא בבית אביה גובה כתובתה לעולם כל זמן שהיא בבית בעלה גובה כתובתה עד עשרים וחמש שנים שיש בכ"ה שנים שתעשה טובה כנגד כתובתה דברי ר' מאיר שאמר משום רשב"ג

MISHNA: As long as a widow is living in the house of her father and is being supported by her husband’s heirs, she may always collect payment of her marriage contract, even after many years. As long as she is living in the house of her husband, she may collect payment of her marriage contract until twenty-five years later, at which point she may no longer collect the payment. This is because there is enough time in twenty-five years for her to do favors and give to others, thereby spending the resources of the orphans, until what she has spent equals the value of her marriage contract. This is the statement of Rabbi Meir, who said it in the name of Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel.

וחכ"א כל זמן שהיא בבית בעלה גובה כתובתה לעולם כל זמן שהיא בבית אביה גובה כתובתה עד עשרים וחמש שנים

And the Rabbis say the opposite: As long as she is residing in the house of her husband she may always collect payment of her marriage contract, since during this time the heirs are caring for her and she is therefore embarrassed to sue them for payment of her marriage contract. However, as long as she is in the house of her father she may collect payment of her marriage contract until twenty-five years later, and if by then she has not sued for it, it is assumed that she has waived her rights to it.

מתה יורשיה מזכירין כתובתה עד עשרים וחמש שנים:

If she died, her heirs mention her marriage contract up until twenty-five years later.

גמ׳ אמר ליה אביי לרב יוסף ענייה שבישראל עד עשרים וחמש שנים ומרתא בת בייתוס עד עשרים וחמש שנים

GEMARA: The mishna stated that according to Rabbi Meir, over a period of twenty-five years a woman will spend a sum equal to her marriage contract from the resources of the orphans. Abaye said to Rav Yosef: Is it true that the poorest woman among the Jewish people, whose marriage contract is of minimal value, will not spend this amount until twenty-five years have passed, and Marta bat Baitos, who was very wealthy and whose marriage contract was worth a huge sum, will also spend a sum equal to her marriage contract within twenty-five years?

אמר ליה לפום גמלא שיחנא

He said to him: According to the camel is the load, i.e., a wealthy woman, whose marriage contract is of greater value, will spend more money over a particular period of time than a poor woman, whose marriage contract is of lesser value.

איבעיא להו לרבי מאיר מהו שתשלש תיקו:

A dilemma was raised before the Sages: According to Rabbi Meir, the amount of benefit she gains is determined by the years that have passed. If so, what is the halakha with regard to whether she divides the value of her marriage contract in accordance with the number of years that have gone by, such that if some of the twenty-five years passed, she forfeits the proportionate value of her marriage contract? No answer was found for this dilemma, and the Gemara concludes: The dilemma shall stand unresolved.

וחכמים אומרים כל זמן: אמר ליה אביי לרב יוסף אתאי קודם שקיעת החמה גובה כתובתה לאחר שקיעת החמה לא גביא בההיא פורתא אחילתא

§ We learned in the mishna: And the Rabbis say: As long as she is in her husband’s house she may collect payment of her marriage contract at any time, but while she is in her father’s house she may collect it only within twenty-five years. Abaye said to Rav Yosef: If she came before the setting of the sun at the end of the twenty-five-year period, she collects payment of her marriage contract, but if she came after the setting of the sun she may not collect it? In that slight period of time did she waive her rights to the payment of her marriage contract?

אמר ליה אין כל מדת חכמים כן היא בארבעים סאה טובל בארבעים סאה חסר קורטוב אינו יכול לטבול בהן

He said to him: Yes. All the measures of the Sages that prescribe specific parameters or sizes are such that if one oversteps the fixed limits, he has not accomplished anything as far as the halakha is considered. Consequently, in a ritual bath containing forty se’a of water, one may immerse and become ritually pure. However, in a ritual bath containing forty se’a less one kortov, a small amount, he is unable to immerse therein and become ritually pure.

אמר רב יהודה אמר רב העיד רבי ישמעאל ברבי יוסי לפני רבי שאמר משום אביו לא שנו אלא שאין שטר כתובה יוצא מתחת ידיה אבל שטר כתובה יוצא מתחת ידיה גובה כתובתה לעולם ורבי אלעזר אמר אפילו שטר כתובה יוצא מתחת ידיה אינה גובה אלא עד עשרים וחמש שנים

Rav Yehuda said that Rav said: Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yosei, testified before Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi and said in the name of his father, Rabbi Yosei: They taught all of the above only in a case where she does not have a marriage contract in her possession, such as in a locale where the custom is not to write a marriage contract, but in a situation where she does have a marriage contract in her possession, she may collect payment of her marriage contract forever. And Rabbi Elazar said: Even if she has a marriage contract in her possession, she still collects payment of her marriage contract only within twenty-five years after the death of her husband.

מתיב רב ששת ב"ח גובה שלא בהזכרה היכי דמי אי דלא נקט שטרא במאי גבי אלא דנקיט שטרא וב"ח הוא דלאו בר אחולי הוא הא אלמנה אחילתא

Rav Sheshet raised an objection against the opinion of Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yosei, based upon the Tosefta (Ketubot 12:3): A creditor may collect the money he is owed even after a long time has passed without his having mentioned the debt. The Gemara clarifies: What are the circumstances? If he does not hold the document that records the debt, with what is he collecting the debt? Rather, it must be that he does hold the document. It can be inferred that even so, it is specifically a creditor, who it could be assumed is not one to have forgiven his debt, who may continue to collect the debt after a long period of time. But a widow is presumed to have waived her rights to the payment of her marriage contract even if she has the marriage contract in her possession. This conclusion contradicts the statement of Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yosei.

הוא מותיב לה והוא מפרק לה לעולם דלא נקיט שטרא והכא במאי עסקינן כשחייב מודה

The Gemara states that Rav Sheshet raised the objection and he resolved it: Actually, the case in the Tosefta is where the creditor does not hold a document that records the debt, and the reason he may collect the debt is because here we are dealing with a case where the debtor admits that he owes the creditor money. Consequently, it cannot be proven from this case that a widow who has a marriage contract in her possession is unable to collect its payment.

והאמר ר' אלעא שונין גרושה הרי היא כבעל חוב היכי דמי אי דלא נקיטא כתובה במאי גביא אלא לאו דנקיטא כתובה וגרושה היא דלאו בת אחולי היא הא אלמנה אחילתא

The Gemara asks: But didn’t Rabbi Ela say: The Sages teach in a baraita: A divorcée is like a creditor and may collect her marriage contract after a long period of time even if she has not made mention of it during the course of that time? The Gemara clarifies: What are the circumstances? If she does not hold a marriage contract in her possession, with what is she collecting payment? Rather, is it not that she holds a marriage contract in her possession, and it is a divorcée who may collect under these circumstances, as she is not one who could be assumed to have waived the rights to the payment owed to her, as she does not maintain a relationship with the family that would prompt her to waive the rights to her claims? But a widow is likely to waive the rights to her claim, even though she is in possession of a contract.

הכא נמי כשחייב מודה

The Gemara answers: Here too, the case is one where the debtor, i.e., the husband, admits to owing the divorcée payment for her marriage contract, although she does not have the marriage contract in her possession.

אמר רב נחמן בר יצחק תני רב יהודה בר קזא במתניתא דבי בר קזא תבעה כתובתה

Rav Naḥman bar Yitzḥak said: Rav Yehuda bar Kaza teaches in a baraita of the school of bar Kaza: If the widow demanded payment of her marriage contract,