וְלֹא הִכּוּם בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל כִּי נִשְׁבְּעוּ לָהֶם נְשִׂיאֵי הָעֵדָה וְכַמָּה רַבִּים רַב נַחְמָן בַּר יִצְחָק אָמַר שְׁלֹשָׁה יָמִים שְׁנַיִם רַבִּים שְׁלֹשָׁה רַבִּי יִצְחָק אָמַר עֲשָׂרָה עֵדָה כְּתִיב בְּהוּ “And the children of Israel did not smite them, for the princes of the assembly had sworn to them” (Joshua 9:18), and since this oath was uttered in the presence of many people, it could not be rescinded, although it was undertaken in error because the Gibeonites had deceived the people of Israel. The Gemara poses a question: And how many people are considered many for the purposes of this law? Rav Naḥman bar Yitzḥak said: Three, as can be learned from the laws of a woman who experiences a discharge of uterine blood after her menstrual period [zava]: “Days” indicates two, which is the minimal number justifying use of the plural noun. The term “many days” (Leviticus 15:25) therefore indicates a total of three. Rabbi Yitzḥak said: Ten, as the term “assembly” is written in relation to the Gibeonites, and it is taught elsewhere that an assembly is comprised of at least ten members.
רַבִּי מֵאִיר אוֹמֵר כׇּל נֶדֶר שֶׁצָּרִיךְ חֲקִירַת חָכָם לֹא יַחֲזִיר רַבִּי אֶלְעָזָר אוֹמֵר לֹא אָסְרוּ צָרִיךְ אֶלָּא מִפְּנֵי שֶׁאֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ בְּמַאי קָמִיפַּלְגִי רַבִּי מֵאִיר סָבַר אָדָם רוֹצֶה שֶׁתִּתְבַּזֶּה אִשְׁתּוֹ בְּבֵית דִּין רַבִּי אֶלְעָזָר סָבַר אֵין אָדָם רוֹצֶה שֶׁתִּתְבַּזֶּה אִשְׁתּוֹ בְּבֵית דִּין The mishna teaches: Rabbi Meir says: In the case of any vow that requires investigation by a halakhic authority, he may not remarry her. Rabbi Elazar says: They prohibited remarrying a woman who was bound by a vow that requires investigation by a halakhic authority only due to a vow that does not require such investigation. The Gemara asks: With regard to what principle do they disagree? Rabbi Meir holds that a man is willing for his wife to be degraded in court, by going to have her vow dissolved. There is concern that the husband might say that had he known the vow could be dissolved he would not have divorced his wife. Such a claim would cast doubt on the validity of the bill of divorce. Rabbi Elazar maintains that a man is not willing for his wife to be degraded in court at all. Therefore, he cannot undermine the bill of divorce. The Sages prohibited him from remarrying her only due to a case that does not need investigation, as the husband can claim he did not know the vow could be dissolved.
רָבָא אָמַר הָכָא בְּאִשָּׁה חֲשׁוּבָה עָסְקִינַן דְּאָמַר לָא נִיחָא לִי דְּאִיתְּסַר בִּקְרוֹבוֹתֶיהָ Returning to the earlier discussion, Rava said a different explanation of the baraita that rules that if she went to a halakhic authority who dissolved her vow she is nevertheless not betrothed: Here we are dealing with an important woman, i.e., a woman from an important family. The husband does not want her due to her habit of vowing, but since she is from an important family he is reluctant to give her a bill of divorce, as he says: It is not amenable to me to be forbidden to all her relatives. He wants to retain ties of marriage with this family, and once he has married this woman, even if he divorces her, he will be forbidden to her mother or sisters. He therefore prefers that the betrothal be entirely dissolved.
אִי הָכִי סֵיפָא דְּקָתָנֵי אֲבָל הוּא שֶׁהָלַךְ אֵצֶל חָכָם וְהִתִּירוֹ אֵצֶל רוֹפֵא וְרִיפֵּא אוֹתוֹ מְקוּדֶּשֶׁת לִיתְנֵי אֵינָהּ מְקוּדֶּשֶׁת וְלֵימָא הָכָא בְּאָדָם חָשׁוּב עָסְקִינַן דְּאָמְרָה לָא נִיחָא לִי דְּאִיתְּסַר בְּקָרִיבֵיהּ The Gemara raises a difficulty: If so, consider the latter clause of the baraita, which teaches: But if he betroths her on condition that there are no vows incumbent upon him or that he has no blemishes, and he does have vows or blemishes, but then he goes to a halakhic authority and he dissolves his vows, or to a doctor and he heals him, she is betrothed. Yet according to Rava, in that case too let the tanna teach that she is not betrothed, and let us likewise say that here we are dealing with an important person, from an important family, as she says: It is not amenable to me to be forbidden to his relatives.
אִיהִי בְּכׇל דְּהוּ נִיחָא לַהּ כִּדְרֵישׁ לָקִישׁ דְּאָמַר רֵישׁ לָקִישׁ טָב לְמֵיתַב טַן דּוּ מִלְּמֵיתַב אַרְמְלוּ אַבָּיֵי אָמַר דְּשׁוּמְשְׁמָנָא גַּבְרָא כּוּרְסְיַהּ בֵּי חָרָאתָא רָמֵי לַהּ The Gemara answers: There is a difference between a man and a woman in this regard, for it is amenable to her to be with any man, flawed though he may be, as taught by Reish Lakish: As Reish Lakish said that women say: It is better to dwell together as two [tan du] than to dwell alone as if a widow. Women will prefer any marriage to remaining single. Similarly, Abaye said that women say: One whose husband is small as an ant, nevertheless places her seat among the noblewomen, as she considers herself important by virtue of the mere fact that she is married.
רַב פָּפָּא אָמַר דְּנַפָּסָא גַּבְרָא תִּיקְרְיֵיהּ בְּסִיפֵּי בָבָא וְתֵיתִיב רַב אָשֵׁי אָמַר דְּקַלָּסָא גַּבְרָא לָא בָּעֲיָא טְלָפְחֵי לְקִידְרָא תָּנָא וְכוּלָּן מְזַנּוֹת וְתוֹלוֹת בְּבַעְלֵיהֶן Rav Pappa said a different maxim expressing a similar idea: One whose husband is a wool comber [nafsa], a lowly occupation, calls him to sit with her at the entrance to the house, as she is proud of him and happy to be married. Similarly, Rav Ashi said: Even one whose husband is lowly [kalsa] does not require lentils for her pot. She is so happy with the simple fact that she is married that she does not mind even if he does not provide her with food. The Gemara comments that it is taught: And all of these women who have lowly husbands yet appear so satisfied with their marriage commit adultery and attribute the birth of the children to their husbands. This is another reason why they are so keen to be married.
כׇּל מוּמִין שֶׁפּוֹסְלִין וְכוּ׳ תָּנָא הוֹסִיפוּ עֲלֵיהֶן זֵיעָה וְשׁוּמָא וְרֵיחַ הַפֶּה וְהָנֵי בְּכָהֲנֵי לָא פָּסְלִי וְהָתְנַן הַזָּקֵן וְהַחוֹלֶה וְהַמְזוֹהָם וּתְנַן מוּמִין אֵלּוּ בֵּין קְבוּעִין בֵּין עוֹבְרִין פְּסוּלִין בָּאָדָם § The mishna teaches that all blemishes that disqualify priests disqualify women’s betrothal as well. The Sage taught in the Tosefta (Ketubot 87:9): To these, they added several additional blemishes applying only to women: Sweat, a mole, and a foul odor from the mouth. The Gemara poses a question: And do these blemishes not also disqualify priests? Didn’t we learn in a mishna with regard to blemishes of animals (Bekhorot 41a): The old, the sick, and the filthy? And it was taught in a different mishna (Bekhorot 43a): These blemishes stated concerning animals, whether they are permanent or whether they are temporary, render people, i.e., priests, disqualified as well. This shows that filth and sweat disqualify priests too.
אָמַר רַבִּי יוֹסֵי בְּרַבִּי חֲנִינָא לָא קַשְׁיָא כָּאן בְּזֵיעָה עוֹבֶרֶת כָּאן בְּזֵיעָה שֶׁאֵינָהּ עוֹבֶרֶת Rabbi Yosei, son of Rabbi Ḥanina, said: This is not difficult. Here, where the baraita states that these blemishes do not disqualify priests, it is referring to removable sweat, which can be washed off. There, the mishna that considers it is a disqualifying blemish for priests, it is speaking of sweat that is not removable.
רַב אָשֵׁי אָמַר זֵיעָה אַמְּזוֹהָם קָא רָמֵית הָתָם גַּבֵּי כֹּהֲנִים אֶפְשָׁר לְעַבֹּרַהּ בְּקִיּוּהָא דְחַמְרָא וּמֵרֵיחַ הַפֶּה נָמֵי אֶפְשָׁר דְּנָקֵט פִּילְפְּלָא בְּפוּמֵּיהּ וְעָבֵיד עֲבוֹדָה אֲבָל גַּבֵּי אִשָּׁה לָא אֶפְשָׁר Rav Ashi said that the entire question is unsubstantiated. Have you raised a contradiction between a ruling concerning sweat and a ruling concerning filth? The term filthy indicates that there is a permanently foul odor, which disqualifies both animals and priests. But there, with regard to priests who suffer from foul odors due to sweat, it is possible to remove it in the short term by use of wine vinegar. And the priest can also temporarily cure himself from a foul odor of the mouth, as it is possible to hold pepper in his mouth to alleviate the odor and proceed to perform the service. But with regard to a woman it is not possible for her to utilize these remedies on a constant basis. Consequently, this blemish disqualifies women and not priests.
הַאי שׁוּמָא הֵיכִי דָּמְיָא אִי דְּאִית בַּהּ שֵׂעָר הָכָא וְהָכָא פָּסְלָה אִי דְּלָא אִית בַּהּ שֵׂעָר אִי שׁוּמָא גְּדוֹלָה הִיא הָכָא וְהָכָא פָּסְלָה אִי שׁוּמָא קְטַנָּה הִיא הָכָא וְהָכָא לָא פָּסְלָה דְּתַנְיָא שׁוּמָא שֶׁיֵּשׁ בָּהּ שֵׂעָר הֲרֵי זֶה מוּם אֵין בָּהּ שֵׂעָר גְּדוֹלָה הֲרֵי זֶה מוּם קְטַנָּה אֵין זֶה מוּם וְאֵיזוֹהִי גְּדוֹלָה פֵּירֵשׁ רַבָּן שִׁמְעוֹן בֶּן גַּמְלִיאֵל עַד כְּאִיסָּר הָאִיטַלְקִי The baraita stated that a mole is a blemish for a woman but not for a priest. The Gemara poses a question: What are the circumstances with regard to this mole? If it has hair growing in it, both here and there, with regard to both women and priests, it is disqualifying. If it does not have hair in it, the following distinction applies: If it is a large mole, both here and there it is disqualifying. If it is a small mole, both here and there it is not disqualifying, as it is taught in a baraita: A mole that has hair in it, this is a blemish. With regard to one that does not have a hair in it, if it is large, this is a blemish. If it is small, this is not a blemish. The tanna proceeds to ask: And what is considered large? Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel explained: As large as the size of an Italian issar, a small coin.
אָמַר רַבִּי יוֹסֵי בְּרַבִּי חֲנִינָא בְּעוֹמֶדֶת עַל פַּדַּחְתָּהּ פַּדַּחְתָּהּ רָאָה וְנִיפַּיַּיס הוּא אָמַר רַב פָּפָּא בְּעוֹמֶדֶת לָהּ תַּחַת כִּפָּה שֶׁל רֹאשָׁהּ וְזִימְנִין דְּמִתְחַזְיָא וְזִימְנִין דְּלָא מִתְחַזְיָא The Gemara answers: Rabbi Yosei, son of Rabbi Ḥanina, said: The case in the baraita discusses a mole that is positioned on her forehead. Despite the mole’s small size, its prominent location makes her appear very ugly. The Gemara asks: If it is on her forehead, it is something that he has seen and accepted. Since it is visible, he knew about it before agreeing to marry her. Therefore, he cannot later divorce her due to a blemish of this kind. Rav Pappa said: The baraita is referring to a mole that is positioned under the cap that is on top of her head. Sometimes it is visible and sometimes it is not visible, and he may not have seen it in advance. It is necessary to teach us that a mole of this kind is considered a blemish.
אָמַר רַב חִסְדָּא הָא מִילְּתָא מִגַּבְרָא רַבָּה שְׁמִיעַ לִי וּמַנּוּ רַבִּי שֵׁילָא נְשָׁכָהּ כֶּלֶב וְנַעֲשָׂה מְקוֹמוֹ צַלֶּקֶת הֲרֵי זֶה מוּם אָמַר רַב חִסְדָּא קוֹל עָבֶה בָּאִשָּׁה הֲרֵי זֶה מוּם שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר כִּי קוֹלֵךְ עָרֵב וּמַרְאֵךְ נָאוֶה תָּנֵי רַבִּי נָתָן בִּירָאָה בֵּין דַּדֵּי אִשָּׁה טֶפַח סָבַר רַב אַחָא בְּרֵיהּ דְּרָבָא קַמֵּיהּ דְּרַב אָשֵׁי לְמֵימַר טֶפַח לִמְעַלְּיוּתָא אֲמַר לֵיהּ רַב אָשֵׁי גַּבֵּי מוּמִין תַּנְיָא וְכַמָּה אָמַר אַבָּיֵי שָׁלֹשׁ אֶצְבָּעוֹת Rav Ḥisda said: I heard this matter from a great man, and who was this great man? Rabbi Sheila was the great man. He said: If a dog bit a woman, and the place of the wound developed into a scar, this is a blemish. Rav Ḥisda further said: A deep voice in a woman, this is a blemish, as it is stated: “For your voice is sweet and your appearance pleasant” (Song of Songs 2:14). Rabbi Natan Bira’a taught: A handbreadth between a woman’s breasts. The amora’im have a dispute concerning the meaning of Rabbi Natan Bira’a’s statement: Rav Aḥa, son of Rava, thought to say before Rav Ashi that this means a handbreadth between a woman’s breasts is perfection and considered beautiful. Rav Ashi said to him: This baraita is taught with regard to blemishes, and it means that if her breasts are separated by a gap this wide, it is a blemish. The Gemara asks: And how much of a gap is considered normal? Abaye said: The width of three fingers.
תַּנְיָא רַבִּי נָתָן אוֹמֵר כׇּל אִשָּׁה שֶׁדַּדֶּיהָ גַּסִּין מִשֶּׁל חַבְרוֹתֶיהָ הֲרֵי זֶה מוּם וְכַמָּה אָמַר רַבִּי מְיָישָׁא בַּר בְּרֵיהּ דְּרַבִּי יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בֶּן לֵוִי מִשְּׁמֵיהּ דְּרַבִּי יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בֶּן לֵוִי טֶפַח וּמִי אִיכָּא כִּי הַאי גַוְונָא אִין דְּאָמַר רַבָּה בַּר בַּר חָנָה אֲנִי רָאִיתִי עַרְבִיָּא אַחַת שֶׁהִפְשִׁילָה דַּדֶּיהָ לַאֲחוֹרֶיהָ וְהֵנִיקָה אֶת בְּנָהּ It is taught in a baraita: Rabbi Natan says: Any woman whose breasts are larger than those of other women, this is a blemish. The Gemara poses a question: And how much larger must they be to be considered a blemish? Rabbi Meyasha, son of the son of Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi, said in the name of Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi: If they are a handbreadth larger than the norm. The Gemara inquires: And is there a case like this? Is it possible for a woman to have such large breasts? The Gemara answers: Yes, as Rabba bar bar Ḥanna said: I once saw a certain Arab woman who flung her breasts behind her and nursed her child.
וּלְצִיּוֹן יֵאָמַר אִישׁ וְאִישׁ יוּלַּד בָּהּ וְהוּא יְכוֹנְנֶהָ עֶלְיוֹן אָמַר רַבִּי מְיָישָׁא בַּר בְּרֵיהּ דְּרַבִּי יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בֶּן לֵוִי אֶחָד הַנּוֹלָד בָּהּ וְאֶחָד הַמְצַפֶּה לִרְאוֹתָהּ אָמַר אַבָּיֵי וְחַד מִינַּיְיהוּ עֲדִיף כִּתְרֵי מִינַּן אָמַר רָבָא וְחַד מִינַּן כִּי סָלֵיק לְהָתָם עֲדִיף כִּתְרֵי מִינַּיְיהוּ דְּהָא רַבִּי יִרְמְיָה דְּכִי הֲוָה הָכָא לָא הֲוָה יָדַע מַאי קָאָמְרִי רַבָּנַן כִּי סְלֵיק לְהָתָם קָרֵי לַן בַּבְלָאֵי טַפְשָׁאֵי § Since the Gemara quoted a statement of Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi’s grandson, the Gemara cites another exposition in his name. The verse states: “And of Zion it shall be said, this man and this man were born in her, and the Most High shall establish her” (Psalms 87:5). Rabbi Meyasha, son of the son of Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi, said: Both the man who was actually born in Zion and the one who looks forward to seeing her are equally considered sons of Zion. Abaye said: And one of the inhabitants of Eretz Yisrael is superior to two of us, Babylonians. Rava said: And one of us Babylonians, when he ascends to Eretz Yisrael, is superior to two people born and raised in Eretz Yisrael. The Gemara cites a proof for Rava’s claim: As Rabbi Yirmeya, when he was here, in Babylonia, did not even know what the Sages say. He was not considered an important scholar. But when he ascended there, it was he, and not the other Sages of Eretz Yisrael, who called us foolish Babylonians. Evidently, he became even greater than they were.
מַתְנִי׳ הָיוּ בָּהּ מוּמִין וְעוֹדָהּ בְּבֵית אָבִיהָ הָאָב צָרִיךְ לְהָבִיא רְאָיָה שֶׁמִּשֶּׁנִּתְאָרְסָה הָיוּ בָּהּ מוּמִין הַלָּלוּ וְנִסְתַּחֲפָה שָׂדֵהוּ נִכְנְסָה לִרְשׁוּת הַבַּעַל הַבַּעַל צָרִיךְ לְהָבִיא רְאָיָה שֶׁעַד שֶׁלֹּא נִתְאָרְסָה הָיוּ בָּהּ מוּמִין אֵלּוּ וְהָיָה מִקָּחוֹ מִקָּח טָעוּת דִּבְרֵי רַבִּי מֵאִיר וַחֲכָמִים אוֹמְרִים בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בְּמוּמִין שֶׁבַּסֵּתֶר MISHNA: If she has blemishes and she is still in her father’s house, as she has not yet gotten married, the father must bring proof that these blemishes appeared on her after she became betrothed, and therefore his field was flooded, i.e., it is the husband’s misfortune, since she developed the problem after the betrothal. But if she has already gotten married and entered the husband’s domain when her blemishes are discovered, the husband must bring proof that she had these blemishes before she was betrothed, and consequently the transaction of betrothal was a mistaken transaction. This is the statement of Rabbi Meir. But the Rabbis say: In what case is this statement, that a husband can claim to have found blemishes in his wife, on account of which he wants to void the betrothal, said? With regard to hidden blemishes.