לֹא קָנָה תַּפְסוּהָ אִינְהוּ רַב פָּפָּא מְימַלַּח מַלּוֹחֵי רַב הוּנָא בְּרֵיהּ דְּרַב יְהוֹשֻׁעַ מְמַתַּח לַהּ בְּאַשְׁלָא מָר אָמַר אֲנָא קָנֵינָא לַהּ לְכוּלַּהּ וּמָר אָמַר אֲנָא קָנֵינָא לַהּ לְכוּלַּהּ has not acquired it. He cannot act to the detriment of others without their consent, and his acquisition harms the other creditors. Those Sages were also owed money by that same man, so they both seized the boat for himself. Rav Pappa steered it with an oar, while Rav Huna, son of Rav Yehoshua, pulled it with a rope. This Sage said: I acquired all of it; and that Sage said: I acquired all of it.
פְּגַע בְּהוּ רַב פִּנְחָס בַּר אַמֵּי אֲמַר לְהוּ רַב וּשְׁמוּאֵל דְּאָמְרִי תַּרְוַיְיהוּ וְהוּא שֶׁצְּבוּרִין וּמוּנָּחִין בִּרְשׁוּת הָרַבִּים אֲמַר לְהוּ אֲנַן נָמֵי מֵחֲרִיפוּתָא דְנַהֲרָא תְּפֵיסְנָא Rav Pineḥas bar Ami encountered them and said to them: What of the opinion of Rav and Shmuel, who both say: And this, that whoever first takes possession has acquired them, is the halakha provided that the items are arranged in a pile and placed in the public domain, which is not the case with this boat? They said to him: We too seized it from the current of the river, i.e., the middle of the river, which has the status of a public domain.
אֲתוֹ לְקַמֵּיהּ דְּרָבָא אֲמַר לְהוּ קָאקֵי חִיוָּרֵי מְשַׁלְּחֵי גְּלִימֵי דְאִינָשֵׁי הָכִי אָמַר רַב נַחְמָן וְהוּא שֶׁתְּפָסָהּ מֵחַיִּים They came before Rava to ask him who had acquired the boat. He said to them: You are white geese [kakei ḥivvarei], in reference to their white beards, who remove people’s cloaks, i.e., your actions were unlawful from the start. This is what Rav Naḥman said: And this, that whoever takes possession has acquired them, is the halakha provided that one seized them from the debtor while he was alive. In this case, however, the boat was seized after the debtor’s death, when the heirs had already taken possession of it.
אֲבִימִי בְּרֵיהּ דְּרַבִּי אֲבָהוּ הֲווֹ מַסְּקִי בֵּיהּ זוּזֵי בֵּי חוֹזָאֵי שַׁדְּרִינְהוּ בְּיַד חָמָא בְּרֵיהּ דְּרַבָּה בַּר אֲבָהוּ אֲזַל פַּרְעִינְהוּ אֲמַר לְהוּ הַבוּ לִי שְׁטָרָא אֲמַרוּ לֵיהּ סִיטְרָאֵי נִינְהוּ The Gemara relates another incident: Avimi, son of Rabbi Abbahu, owed money to people from Bei Ḥozai.He sent the money in the possession of Ḥama, son of Rabba bar Abbahu, who went and paid the money that Avimi, son of Rabbi Abbahu, owed, and he then said to the people from Bei Ḥozai: Give me back the document that shows that the person who sent me owes you money. They said to him: The money that you paid us was for side debts, i.e., money from a different debt, which was not written in a document. We accepted the money from you as payment of that debt. We will therefore not return the document to you, as he has yet to pay off the debt listed in the document.
אֲתָא לְקַמֵּיהּ דְּרַבִּי אֲבָהוּ אֲמַר לֵיהּ אִית לְךָ סָהֲדֵי דִּפְרַעְתִּינְהוּ אֲמַר לֵיהּ לָא אֲמַר לֵיהּ מִיגּוֹ דִּיכוֹלִין לוֹמַר לֹא הָיוּ דְבָרִים מֵעוֹלָם יְכוֹלִין נָמֵי לְמֵימַר סִיטְרָאֵי נִינְהוּ This case came before Rabbi Abbahu. He said to Ḥama, son of Rabba bar Abbahu: Do you have witnesses that you paid them? He said to him: No. Rabbi Abbahu said to him: He could have made a more advantageous claim [miggo]. Since they can say: These matters never occurred, i.e., you never paid them anything, they can also say: These are side debts. Therefore, you cannot demand from them either the money or the document.
לְעִנְיַן שַׁלּוֹמֵי שָׁלִיחַ מַאי אָמַר רַב אָשֵׁי חָזֵינַן אִי אֲמַר לֵיהּ שְׁקוֹל שְׁטָרָא וְהַב זוּזֵי מְשַׁלֵּם הַב זוּזֵי וּשְׁקוֹל שְׁטָרָא לָא מְשַׁלֵּם The Gemara asks: With regard to the payment of the agent, what is the halakha? Must the agent reimburse the one who appointed him for his loss? Rav Ashi said: We see that if the one who appointed him said to him: Take the document from them and give them money, then the agent disobeyed his instructions by first paying the money and must pay back the one who appointed him. If, however, the one who appointed him said to the agent: Give the money and take the document, he does not pay, as the one who appointed him was not particular about instructing the agent to take the document before giving them money.
וְלָא הִיא בֵּין כָּךְ וּבֵין כָּךְ מְשַׁלֵּם דְּאָמַר לֵיהּ לְתַקּוֹנֵי שַׁדַּרְתָּיךָ וְלָא לְעַוּוֹתֵי The Gemara comments: And this is not so; Rav Ashi’s ruling is not accepted as halakha. Whether the instructions were given in this manner or whether the instructions were given in that manner, the agent must pay, as the one who appointed him can say to him: I sent you to act for my benefit, and not to my detriment. His right to act as an agent did not extend to a case where it was to the detriment of the one who designated him.
הָהִיא אִיתְּתָא דַּהֲווֹ מִיפַּקְדִי גַּבַּהּ מְלוּגָא דִשְׁטָרֵי אֲתוֹ יוֹרְשִׁים קָא תָּבְעִי לֵיהּ מִינַּהּ אֲמַרָה לְהוּ מֵחַיִּים תְּפֵיסְנָא לְהוּ אֲתַאי לְקַמֵּיהּ דְּרַב נַחְמָן אֲמַר לַהּ אִית לִיךְ סָהֲדֵי דְּתַבְעוּהָ מִינִּיךְ מֵחַיִּים וְלָא יְהַבְיתְּ נִיהֲלֵיהּ אָמְרָה לֵיהּ לָא אִם כֵּן הָוֵי תְּפִיסָה דִּלְאַחַר מִיתָה וּתְפִיסָה דִּלְאַחַר מִיתָה לֹא כְּלוּם הִיא The Gemara relates another incident: There was a certain woman who had a bag [meloga] full of documents deposited with her. The heirs came and claimed it from her. She said to them: I seized the bag of documents from the deceased while he was alive, as he owed me money. They came before Rav Naḥman for judgment. He said to her: Do you have witnesses that the deceased claimed the bag from you while he was alive and you did not give it to him? She said to him: No, I do not have witnesses to this effect. He replied: If so, this is considered a case of seizing property after death, and seizing after death is nothing. As stated earlier, seizing property to recover a debt is effective only when done during the lifetime of the debtor. It is ineffective once he is dead and others have inherited his property.
הָהִיא אִיתְּתָא דְּאִיחַיַּיבָא שְׁבוּעָה בֵּי דִינָא דְּרָבָא אֲמַרָה לֵיהּ בַּת רַב חִסְדָּא יָדְעָנָא בָּהּ דַּחֲשׁוּדָה אַשְּׁבוּעָה אַפְכַהּ רָבָא לִשְׁבוּעָה אַשֶּׁכְּנֶגְדָּהּ The Gemara relates another incident: There was a certain woman who was obligated to take an oath in order to avoid payment in Rava’s court. The daughter of Rav Ḥisda said to Rava, her husband: I know that she is suspect with regard to taking a false oath. Rava reversed the obligation of the oath so that it fell onto the other party, who now had the option of taking an oath that the woman owes him money and collecting his debt. This is how to act when the court does not trust the one who is obligated to take an oath.
זִימְנִין הָווּ יָתְבִי קַמֵּיהּ רַב פָּפָּא וְרַב אַדָּא בַּר מַתְנָא אַיְיתוֹ הָהוּא שְׁטָרָא גַּבֵּיהּ אֲמַר לֵיהּ רַב פָּפָּא יָדַעְנָא בֵּיהּ דִּשְׁטָרָא פְּרִיעָא הוּא אֲמַר לֵיהּ אִיכָּא אִינִישׁ אַחֲרִינָא בַּהֲדֵיהּ דְּמָר אֲמַר לֵיהּ לָא אֲמַר לֵיהּ אַף עַל גַּב דְּאִיכָּא מָר עֵד אֶחָד לָאו כְּלוּם הוּא The Gemara continues: On another occasion, Rav Pappa and Rav Adda bar Mattana were sitting before Rava. A certain document was brought before Rava to be examined in court. Rav Pappa said to Rava: I know about this document, that it records a debt that has already been paid. Rava said to him: Is there another person who can testify with the Master about the document? He said to him: No, I am the only one who knows. Rava said to him: Although there is the Master here who attests that the document has been paid, one witness is nothing.
אֲמַר לֵיהּ רַב אַדָּא בַּר מַתְנָא וְלֹא יְהֵא רַב פָּפָּא כְּבַת רַב חִסְדָּא בַּת רַב חִסְדָּא קִים לִי בְּגַוַּוהּ מָר לָא קִים לִי בְּגַוֵּויהּ Rav Adda bar Mattana said to Rava: And should Rav Pappa not be trusted like Rav Ḥisda’s daughter, who as a woman is disqualified from testimony? Rava replied: I relied on Rav Ḥisda’s daughter because I know with certainty about her that she is always truthful. However, I cannot rely on the Master because I do not know with the same degree of certainty about him that he is always truthful, and I cannot rule on the basis of one witness unless I have complete certainty.
אָמַר רַב פָּפָּא הַשְׁתָּא דְּאָמַר מָר קִים לִי בְּגַוֵּויהּ מִילְּתָא הִיא כְּגוֹן אַבָּא מָר בְּרִי דְּקִים לִי בְּגַוֵּויהּ קָרַעְנָא שְׁטָרָא אַפּוּמֵּיהּ Rav Pappa said: Now that the Master, Rava, has said that the claim: I know with certainty about him, is a significant matter, i.e., a claim that can be used in court, if a judge knows that someone is telling the truth, although under normal circumstances his testimony would be inadmissible, in this case it does have a certain legal validity. For example, if Abba Mar, my son, about whom I know with certainty always tells the truth, claims that a document that records a debt has already been paid, then I can tear the document on the basis of his word.
קָרַעְנָא סָלְקָא דַּעְתָּךְ אֶלָּא מַרַעְנָא שְׁטָרָא אַפּוּמֵּיהּ The Gemara asks: How can it enter your mind that the court can tear a document based on the word of a single witness? Rather, the statement should be that I can weaken the document on the basis of his word, by not allowing it to be used for claiming payment without further proof.
הָהִיא אִיתְּתָא דְּאִיחַיַּיבָא שְׁבוּעָה בֵּי דִינָא דְּרַב בִּיבִי בַּר אַבָּיֵי אֲמַר לְהוּ הַהוּא בַּעַל דִּין תֵּיתֵי וְתִישְׁתְּבַע בְּמָתָא אֶפְשָׁר דְּמִיכַּסְפָא וּמוֹדְיָא אֲמַרָה לְהוּ כְּתֻבוּ לִי זַכְווֹתָא דְּכִי מִשְׁתְּבַעְנָא יָהֲבִי לִי אֲמַר לְהוּ רַב בִּיבִי בַּר אַבָּיֵי כִּתְבוּ לַהּ The Gemara relates another incident: There was a certain woman who was obligated to take an oath in Rav Beivai bar Abaye’s court. The opposing litigant said to the judges: Let her come and take an oath in the town. It is possible that she will be ashamed of her lies and will admit that she is liable. She said to the judges: Write a document of rights for me, so that when I take the oath they will give it to me, and I will then be willing to take an oath in the town. Rav Beivai bar Abaye said to them: Write the document for her.
אָמַר רַב פַּפֵּי מִשּׁוּם דְּאָתֵיתוּ מִמּוּלָאֵי אָמְרִיתוּ מִילֵּי מוּלְיָתָא Rav Pappi said: Is it because you come from unfortunate peo-ple [de’atitu mimmula’ei] that you say unfortunate things? Rav Beivai was from the house of Eli, whose descendants were sentenced to die at a young age.
הָא אָמַר רָבָא הַאי אַשַּׁרְתָּא דְּדַיָּינֵי דְּמִיכַּתְבָא מִקַּמֵּי דְּנַחְווֹ סָהֲדֵי אַחֲתִימוּת יְדַיְיהוּ פְּסוּלָה אַלְמָא מִיחְזֵי כְּשִׁיקְרָא הָכִי נָמֵי מִיחְזֵי כְּשִׁיקְרָא Rav Pappi said that Rav Beivai bar Abaye was wrong to say what he said because of a statement of Rava. Didn’t Rava say: This ratification of judges, which was written on a document before the witnesses had seen and testified about their signature, is invalid, although the witnesses later attested that it was their signatures? Apparently, it has the appearance of falsehood because they affirmed the validity of a document before hearing the testimony. Here too, if the judges wrote a document of rights before the woman took her oath, the document would have the appearance of falsehood, and the court should not write a document of rights for her before she takes an oath.
וְלֵיתַהּ מִדְּרַב נַחְמָן דְּאָמַר רַב נַחְמָן אוֹמֵר הָיָה רַבִּי מֵאִיר אֲפִילּוּ מְצָאוֹ בְּאַשְׁפָּה וַחֲתָמוֹ וּנְתָנוֹ לָהּ כָּשֵׁר וַאֲפִילּוּ רַבָּנַן לָא פְּלִיגִי עֲלֵיהּ דְּרַבִּי מֵאִיר אֶלָּא בְּגִיטֵּי נָשִׁים דְּבָעֵינַן כְּתִיבָה לִשְׁמָהּ אֲבָל בִּשְׁאָר שְׁטָרוֹת מוֹדוּ לֵיהּ The Gemara comments: And this halakha of Rava’s is not accepted because of a statement of Rav Naḥman, as Rav Naḥman said: Rabbi Meir would say: Even if the husband found a bill of divorce with names identical to those of his and his wife’s, in the garbage, and he had it signed by witnesses and gave it to his wife, it is valid. Rav Naḥman adds: And the Rabbis do not disagree with Rabbi Meir, except in the case of bills of divorce of women, since the Rabbis hold that the writing of the bill of divorce needs to be done for the sake of the woman getting divorced. But for all other documents, they concede to him that it makes no difference when the document was written.
דְּאָמַר רַב אַסִּי אָמַר רַבִּי יוֹחָנָן שְׁטָר שֶׁלָּוָה בּוֹ וּפְרָעוֹ אֵינוֹ חוֹזֵר וְלֹוֶה בּוֹ שֶׁכְּבָר נִמְחַל שִׁיעְבּוּדוֹ טַעְמָא דְּנִמְחַל שִׁיעְבּוּדוֹ אֲבָל לְמִיחְזֵי The proof of this is that Rav Asi said that Rabbi Yoḥanan said: With regard to a document that one borrowed money based on it and then repaid the debt, he may not borrow money again based on it. This is because its lien has already been forgiven. Once the debt has been repaid, the lien resulting from the loan is no longer in force. The witnesses did not sign the document at the time of the second loan, so the lien will not be in effect, and the loan will have the status of one by oral agreement. The Gemara infers: The reason that he cannot reuse the document is because its lien has been forgiven, so that the document is no longer accurate; but as for the fact that it has the appearance