Ketubot 15a:14כתובות ט״ו א:יד
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15aט״ו א

בקרונות של ציפורי היה מעשה וכדרבי אמי דאמר רבי אמי והוא שהיתה סיעה של בני אדם כשרין עוברת לשם וכדר' ינאי דאמר ר' ינאי נבעלת בקרונות כשרה לכהונה

The incident transpired among the wagons [keronot] in the marketplace of Tzippori on the market day, and this halakha is in accordance with the statement of Rabbi Ami, as Rabbi Ami said: And this is the ruling only in a case where there was a contingent of men of unflawed lineage passing there. Due to the fact that both the lineage of the majority of the people of the city where the girl was raped and the lineage of the majority of the passersby is unflawed, the rape is attributed to a man of unflawed lineage. And this ruling is in accordance with the statement of Rabbi Yannai, as Rabbi Yannai said: If she engaged in intercourse in the wagons, she is fit to marry a member of the priesthood.

בקרונות סלקא דעתך אלא נבעלת בשעת קרונות כשרה לכהונה אבל פירש אחד מציפורי ובעל הולד שתוקי

The Gemara asks: Does it enter your mind to say that the woman was raped in the wagons, in the crowded area of the marketplace where business is conducted? Rather, Rabbi Yannai is saying that if she was forced to engage in intercourse at the time of the wagons, i.e., when the convoys pass, she is fit to marry a member of the priesthood. However, if one individual, whose lineage is unknown, left Tzippori and engaged in intercourse with a woman, the child is a shetuki and deemed unfit to marry into the priesthood even though the majority of the inhabitants of city are of unflawed lineage.

כי הא דכי אתא רב דימי אמר זעירי א"ר חנינא ואמרי לה אמר זעירי אמר ר' חנינא הולכין אחר רוב העיר ואין הולכין אחר רוב סיעה

The Gemara notes: That is similar to this statement that when Rav Dimi came from Eretz Yisrael to Babylonia, Ze’eiri said that Rabbi Ḥanina said, and some say directly that Ze’eiri said that Rabbi Ḥanina said: One follows the flawed lineage of the majority of the people in the city and one does not follow the unflawed lineage of the majority of the traveling contingent, and the woman who engaged in intercourse with a member of the itinerant contingent is deemed unfit to marry into the priesthood.

כלפי לייא הני ניידי והני קביעי וקיימי

The Gemara asks: On the contrary [kelapei layya], the opposite is logical. These members of the contingent are moving, and in that case the principle is that one follows the majority. And these people of the city are fixed and standing in one place, and in that case the principle is that even if the lineage of the majority is unflawed, the uncertainty is treated as if it were equally balanced.

אלא הולכין אחר רוב העיר והוא דאיכא רוב סיעה בהדה ואין הולכין אחר רוב העיר גרידתא ולא אחר רוב סיעה גרידתא מ"ט גזרה רוב סיעה אטו רוב העיר

Rather, this is what Rabbi Yannai is saying: One follows the lineage of the majority of the city, and that is specifically in a case where there is a majority of men of unflawed lineage in the passing contingent together with the city’s unflawed majority. In that case, from both perspectives the intercourse can be attributed to a man of unflawed lineage. However, neither does one follow the unflawed lineage of the majority of the city alone, nor does he follow the unflawed lineage of the majority of the contingent alone. What is the reason that one does not follow the lineage of the majority of the moving contingent? It is because the Sages issued a decree not to follow the majority of the contingent due to the majority of the city, where one does not follow the majority.

ורוב העיר נמי אי דקא אזלי אינהו לגבה כל דפריש מרובא פריש לא צריכא דקא אזלא איהי לגבייהו דהוה ליה קבוע וא"ר זירא כל קבוע כמחצה על מחצה דמי

The Gemara asks: But aren’t there cases where one follows the majority of the city as well, as, if one of the residents of the city goes out of the city to her and rapes her, the principle is: The legal status of any item that is separated from the group is that of one separated from the majority? Therefore, there is no reason to issue a decree. The Gemara answers: The decree is necessary only due to a case where she went into the city to them, in which case the rapist is an indistinguishable member of a fixed set, and Rabbi Zeira said: The legal status of uncertainty with regard to any item fixed in its place is that of an uncertainty that is equally balanced, and one does not follow the majority.

ומי בעינן תרי רובי והתניא תשע חנויות כולן מוכרות בשר שחוטה ואחת מוכרת בשר נבלה ולקח מאחת מהן ואינו יודע מאי זה מהן לקח ספיקו אסור ובנמצא הלך אחר הרוב

The Gemara questions the statement of Rabbi Ami: And do we require two majorities to overcome the minority? Isn’t it taught in a baraita: With regard to nine stores in a city, all of which sell kosher meat from a slaughtered animal, and one other store that sells meat from unslaughtered animal carcasses, and a person bought meat from one of the stores and he does not know from which store he bought the meat, in this case of uncertainty, the meat is prohibited. The legal status of uncertainty with regard to any item fixed in its place is that of an uncertainty that is equally balanced, and one does not follow the majority. This baraita continues: And in the case of meat found in the street, outside the stores, follow the majority of stores that sell kosher meat. In other words, the meat is kosher.

וכי תימא בשאין דלתות מדינה נעולות דקא אתי לה רובא מעלמא והא א"ר זירא אע"פ שדלתות מדינה נעולות מעלה עשו ביוחסין

And if you would say that one follows the majority only in a case where the gates of the city are unlocked, where the meat could have come to the city from the majority of kosher meat outside the city and only by combining that majority with the majority of kosher meat stores inside the city, creating two majorities, is the meat ruled kosher; but didn’t Rabbi Zeira say: Even if the city gates are locked, one follows the majority and the meat is kosher even without a double majority? The Gemara answers: The Sages require two majorities only in cases such as establishing the identity of the child’s father, because they established a higher standard with regard to matters of lineage. However, in other cases, e.g., concerning kosher meat, a single majority is sufficient.

גופא א"ר זירא כל קבוע כמחצה על מחצה דמי בין לקולא בין לחומרא

§ In terms of the matter itself, Rabbi Zeira said: The legal status of uncertainty with regard to any item fixed in its place is that of an uncertainty that is equally balanced, both when it leads to leniency, e.g., in a case where, were one to follow the majority, the ruling would be stringent, and when it leads to stringency, e.g., in a case where, were one to follow the majority, the ruling would be lenient.

מנא ליה לר' זירא הא אילימא מתשע חנויות כולן מוכרות בשר שחוטה ואחת בשר נבלה ולקח מאחת מהן ואינו יודע מאיזה מהן לקח ספיקו אסור ובנמצא הלך אחר הרוב התם לחומרא

The Gemara asks: From where does Rabbi Zeira learn that the legal status of uncertainty with regard to any item fixed in its place is that of an uncertainty that is equally balanced, both when it leads to leniency and when it leads to stringency? If we say that it is derived from the case of nine stores in a city, all of which sell kosher meat from a slaughtered animal, and one other store that sells meat from unslaughtered animal carcasses, and a person bought meat from one of the stores and he does not know from which store he bought the meat, in this case of uncertainty the meat is prohibited. And in the case of meat found in the street, outside the stores, follow the majority of stores that sell kosher meat, and therefore the meat would be kosher. There, in the first case, ruling it an equally balanced uncertainty is a stringency, as there is a majority of kosher stores.

אלא מתשעה צפרדעים ושרץ אחד ביניהם ונגע באחד מהן ואינו יודע באיזה מהן נגע ספיקו טמא התם נמי לחומרא

Rather, Rabbi Zeira learns that halakha from a different baraita. If there were nine frogs, which is a creeping animal that does not impart ritual impurity while alive or when dead, and one ritually impure creeping animal, whose carcass imparts ritual impurity, among them, and a person touched one of the ten creatures, and he does not know which of them he touched, in this case of uncertainty the person is ritually impure. There too, ruling it an equally balanced uncertainty is a stringency, as the majority of the creeping animals do not impart impurity.

אלא מתשעה שרצים וצפרדע אחד ביניהם ונגע באחד מהן ואינו יודע באיזה מהן נגע ברה"י ספיקו טמא ברשות הרבי' ספיקו טהור

Rather, Rabbi Zeira learns that halakha from the continuation of that baraita. If there are nine creeping animals, whose carcasses impart ritual impurity, and one frog among them, and a person touched one of them, and he does not know which of them he touched, if it was in the private domain, in this case of uncertainty the person is ritually impure, as all cases of uncertainty with regard to ritual impurity are ruled impure in the private domain. This is derived from the case of sota. However, in the public domain, in that case of uncertainty the person is ritually pure. Although contact with a creeping animal from the majority would render him ritually impure, since the uncertainty is with regard to a fixed group, its legal status is that of an equally balanced uncertainty, and in the public domain he is ritually pure. Rabbi Zeira learns that halakha from this case of leniency.

ומדאורייתא מנא לן אמר קרא (דברים יט, יא) וארב לו וקם עליו עד שיתכוין לו ורבנן אמרי דבי ר' ינאי פרט לזורק אבן לגו

After citing a tannaitic source for Rabbi Zeira’s opinion, the Gemara asks: And from where in the Torah do we derive that the legal status of any item fixed in its place is like that of an uncertainty that is equally balanced, both when it leads to leniency and when it leads to stringency? It is derived from the verse that states with regard to a murderer: “And lie in wait for him, and rise up against him” (Deuteronomy 19:11), indicating that one is liable only in a case where he intends to kill him. One who intended to kill one person and inadvertently killed another is exempt from punishment. And how do the Rabbis, who hold that one is liable in that case, interpret that verse? The Sages of the school of Rabbi Yannai say: It excludes the case of one who throws a stone into a crowd and did not intend to kill a specific person.

היכי דמי אילימא דאיכא תשעה כנענים ואחד ישראל ביניהם ותיפוק ליה דרובא כנענים נינהו אי נמי פלגא ופלגא ספק נפשות להקל

The Gemara asks: What are the circumstances of the case where he threw the stone and is exempt? If we say that there are nine gentiles in the crowd and one Jew among them, even without the verse, let him derive the exemption from the fact that they are a majority of gentiles. Alternatively, even if we say that half of the ten people are considered gentiles and half are considered Jews, let him derive the exemption from the principle: In a case of uncertainty concerning a life-threatening situation, the halakha is lenient.

לא צריכא דאיכא תשעה ישראלים וכנעני אחד ביניהם דהוה ליה כנעני קבוע וכל קבוע כמחצה על מחצה דמי

The Gemara answers: No, the verse is necessary only in a case where there are nine Jews and one gentile among them. Were the ruling to follow the majority the one who threw the stone would be liable. But in that case, because the gentile is fixed among them, and the legal status of any item fixed in its place is like that of an uncertainty that is equally balanced, he is exempt, based on the principle: In a case of uncertainty concerning a life-threatening situation, the halakha is lenient. Apparently, even in cases of Torah law in which the result would be a leniency, i.e., exemption from the death penalty for murder, the legal status of any item fixed in its place is like that of an uncertainty that is equally balanced.

איתמר רב חייא בר אשי אמר רב הלכה כרבי יוסי ורב חנן בר רבא אמר רב הוראת שעה היתה

§ With regard to the matter of following the majority in cases of lineage, it was stated that there is an amoraic dispute: Rav Ḥiyya bar Ashi said that Rav said: The halakha is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei in the mishna, and it is permitted for the young girl who was raped to marry a priest. And Rav Ḥanan bar Rava said that Rav said: That was a provisional edict issued in exigent circumstances. However, typically, with regard to matters of lineage two majorities are required.

מתיב רבי ירמיה וליוחסין לא בעינן תרי רובי והתנן

Rav Yirmeya raised an objection to the ruling of Rav Ḥiyya bar Ashi, who apparently ruled that even in cases where there is one majority the halakha is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei: And in matters of lineage, do we not require two majorities, a majority of the city’s inhabitants and a major-ity of the passing contingent? But didn’t we learn in a mishna (Makhshirin 2:7):

Rashi on Ketubot 15a:14:2רש"י על כתובות ט״ו א:י״ד:ב
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