Megillah 23aמגילה כ״ג א
The William Davidson Talmudתלמוד מהדורת ויליאם דוידסון
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23aכ״ג א

ורבא דמצלי אצלויי:

and Rava, who would bend their heads and not actually prostrate themselves on the ground.

ביו"ט חמשה ביוה"כ ששה כו': מתני' מני לא ר' ישמעאל ולא רבי עקיבא דתניא ביו"ט חמשה וביוה"כ ששה ובשבת שבעה אין פוחתין מהן ואין מוסיפין עליהן דברי ר' ישמעאל ר"ע אומר ביו"ט חמשה וביום הכפורים שבעה ובשבת ששה אין פוחתין מהן אבל מוסיפין עליהן

We learned in the mishna: On a Festival, five people read; on Yom Kippur, six people read; and on Shabbat, seven people read. One may not decrease the number of readers, but one may add to them. The Gemara asks: Who is the tanna of the mishna? It is not Rabbi Yishmael and not Rabbi Akiva, as it is taught in a baraita: On a Festival, five people read from the Torah; and on Yom Kippur, six people read; and on Shabbat, seven people read. One may not decrease or add to the required number of readers. This is the statement of Rabbi Yishmael. Rabbi Akiva disagrees and says: On a Festival, five people read from the Torah; and on Yom Kippur, seven people read; and on Shabbat, six people read. One may not decrease these numbers, but one may add to them.

מני אי ר' ישמעאל קשיא תוספת אי ר"ע קשיא ששה ושבעה

Who is the tanna of the mishna? If you say it is Rabbi Yishmael, it is difficult due to the ruling with regard to adding, as the mishna states that one may add additional readers but Rabbi Yishmael holds that one may not do so. If you say it is Rabbi Akiva, it is difficult due to the ruling concerning the days on which there are six and seven readers.

אמר רבא תנא דבי רבי ישמעאל היא דתנא דבי ר' ישמעאל ביום טוב חמשה ביוה"כ ששה בשבת שבעה אין פוחתין מהן אבל מוסיפין עליהן דברי ר' ישמעאל

Rava said: It is the tanna of the school of Rabbi Yishmael, as it was taught in the school of Rabbi Yishmael: On a Festival, five people read from the Torah; on Yom Kippur, six people read; on Shabbat, seven people read. One may not decrease these numbers but one may add to them. This is the statement of Rabbi Yishmael.

קשיא דר' ישמעאל אדר' ישמעאל תרי תנאי אליבא דרבי ישמעאל

The Gemara comments: If so, there is a contradiction between the opinion of Rabbi Yishmael, as expressed in the mishna, and the opinion of Rabbi Yishmael himself, as recorded in the baraita. The Gemara responds: Two tanna’im, students of Rabbi Yishmael, expressed different opinions in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yishmael.

מאן תנא להא דתניא ביו"ט מאחרין לבוא וממהרין לצאת ביום הכפורים ממהרין לבוא ומאחרין לצאת ובשבת ממהרין לבוא וממהרין לצאת לימא ר"ע דאית ליה גברא יתירא אפילו תימא רבי ישמעאל דנפיש סידורא דיומא

The Gemara asks: Who is the tanna who taught that which is taught in a baraita: On a Festival, one is slow to arrive at the synagogue because one is busy preparing for the festive meal, and one is quick to leave in order to eat; on Yom Kippur, one is quick to arrive at the synagogue and slow to leave; and on Shabbat, one is quick to arrive, as the meal has been prepared before Shabbat, and quick to leave in order to eat the Shabbat meal? Let us say it is Rabbi Akiva, who holds that an additional man reads from the Torah on Yom Kippur, which prolongs the service on that day. The Gemara rejects this suggestion: Even if you say it is Rabbi Yishmael, one leaves the synagogue late because the order of the day, i.e., the prayer service, is very long, as it includes many supplications and confessions.

הני שלשה חמשה ושבעה כנגד מי פליגי בה רבי יצחק בר נחמני וחד דעמיה ומנו רבי שמעון בן פזי ואמרי לה ר' שמעון בן פזי וחד דעמיה ומנו רבי יצחק בר נחמני ואמרי לה ר' שמואל בר נחמני חד אמר כנגד ברכת כהנים וחד אמר כנגד שלשה שומרי הסף חמשה מרואי פני המלך שבעה רואי פני המלך

A question is raised with regard to the number of readers on different days. Corresponding to what were these three, five, and seven, readers instituted? Rabbi Yitzḥak bar Naḥmani and one other Sage who was with him disagree about this. And who was that other scholar? Rabbi Shimon ben Pazi. And some say that this was a matter of dispute between Rabbi Shimon ben Pazi and one other scholar who was with him. And who was that other scholar? Rabbi Yitzḥak bar Naḥmani, and some say it was Rabbi Shmuel bar Naḥmani. One said: These numbers correspond to the number of Hebrew words in the three verses of the Priestly Benediction. And one said: These numbers correspond to the three guards of the door (II Kings 25:18), five of the officers who saw the king’s face (II Kings 25:19), and the seven officers who saw the king’s face (Esther 1:14).

תני רב יוסף ג' חמשה ושבעה שלשה שומרי הסף חמשה מרואי פני המלך שבעה רואי פני המלך אמר ליה אביי עד האידנא מאי טעמא לא פריש לן מר אמר ליה לא הוה ידענא דצריכתו ליה ומי בעיתו מינאי מילתא ולא אמרי לכו

Similarly, Rav Yosef taught a baraita: The three, five, and seven people who read from the Torah correspond to the three guards of the door, five of the officers who saw the king’s face, and the seven officers who saw the king’s face. When Rav Yosef taught this, Abaye said to him: What is the reason that until now the Master did not explain the matter to us in this way? Rav Yosef said to him: I did not know that you needed this information, as I thought that you were already familiar with the baraita. Have you ever asked me something and I did not tell you?

אמר ליה יעקב מינאה לרב יהודה הני ששה דיוה"כ כנגד מי אמר ליה כנגד ששה שעמדו מימינו של עזרא וששה משמאלו שנאמר (נחמיה ח, ד) ויעמוד עזרא הסופר על מגדל עץ אשר עשו לדבר ויעמוד אצלו מתתיה ושמע ועניה ואוריה וחלקיה ומעשיה על ימינו ומשמאלו פדיה ומישאל ומלכיה וחשום וחשבדנה זכריה משלם

Ya’akov of Mina said to Rav Yehuda: Corresponding to whom were these six readers on Yom Kippur instituted? Rav Yehuda said to him: The number six corresponds to the six people who stood to Ezra’s right and the six people who stood to his left, as it is stated: “And Ezra the Scribe stood upon a platform of wood, which they had made for the purpose, and beside him stood Mattithiah, and Shema, and Anaiah, and Uriah, and Hilkiah, and Maaseiah, on his right hand, and on his left hand, Pedaiah, and Mishael, and Malchiah, and Hashum, and Hashbadanah, Zechariah, Meshullam” (Nehemiah 8:4).

הני שבעה הוו היינו זכריה היינו משלם ואמאי קראו משלם דמישלם בעובדיה

The Gemara challenges this answer: Those that stood to his left were seven and not six. The Gemara responds: Zechariah is the same as Meshullam, that is to say, they are not two separate people, but rather one person with two names. And why was he called Meshullam? Because he was perfect [mishlam] in his actions.

ת"ר הכל עולין למנין שבעה ואפילו קטן ואפילו אשה אבל אמרו חכמים אשה לא תקרא בתורה מפני כבוד צבור

§ The Sages taught in a Tosefta (Megilla 3:11): All people count toward the quorum of seven readers, even a minor and even a woman. However, the Sages said that a woman should not read the Torah, out of respect for the congregation.

איבעיא להו מפטיר מהו שיעלה למנין שבעה רב הונא ור' ירמיה בר אבא חד אמר עולה וחד אמר אינו עולה מ"ד עולה דהא קרי

A dilemma was raised before the Sages: With regard to the reader who concludes [maftir] the Torah reading and reads from the Prophets [haftara], what is the halakha; does he count toward the quorum of seven readers? Rav Huna and Rabbi Yirmeya bar Abba disagreed about this matter. One said: He counts, and one said: He does not count. The one who said that he counts toward the seven readers holds that opinion because he reads from the Torah.

ומ"ד אינו עולה כדעולא דאמר עולא מפני מה המפטיר בנביא צריך שיקרא בתורה תחלה מפני כבוד תורה וכיון דמשום כבוד תורה הוא למנינא לא סליק

And the one who said that he does not count holds in accordance with the opinion of Ulla, as Ulla said: For what reason must the one who concludes with a reading from the Prophets read from the Torah first? It is due to respect for the Torah, so that those present should not conclude that he was called up only to read from the Prophets because the honor due the Torah and the honor due the Prophets are equal. And since he reads only out of respect for the Torah, he is not included in the quorum of seven readers.

מיתיבי המפטיר בנביא לא יפחות מעשרים ואחד פסוקין כנגד שבעה שקראו בתורה ואם איתא עשרים וארבעה הויין כיון דמשום כבוד תורה הוא

The Gemara raises an objection based upon the following baraita: The one who concludes with a reading from the Prophets may not read fewer than twenty-one verses, corresponding to the seven who read from the Torah. Each one who reads from the Torah must read at least three verses, for a total of at least twenty-one verses. And if it is so, that the one who reads the haftara does not count toward the quorum of seven readers, and he is an eighth reader, the minimum number of verses that must be read from the Torah is twenty-four and not twenty-one. The Gemara answers: Since the one who reads the haftara reads from the Torah first only due to respect for the Torah,