One who injures another is liable to pay compensation for that injury due to five types of indemnity: He must pay for damage, for pain, for medical costs, for loss of livelihood, and for humiliation. How is payment for damage assessed? If one blinded another’s eye, severed his hand, broke his leg, or caused any other injury, the court views the injured party as though he were a slave being sold in the slave market, and the court appraises how much he was worth before the injury and how much he is worth after the injury. The difference between these two sums is the amount that one must pay for causing damage. How is payment for pain assessed? If one burned another with a skewer [beshapud] or with a hot nail, or even if one burned another on his fingernail, which is a place where he does not cause a bruise that would affect the victim’s value on the slave market, the court evaluates how much money a person with a similar threshold for pain as the victim is willing to take in order to be made to suffer in this way. The one who burned the victim must then pay this amount. How is payment for medical costs assessed? If one struck another, then he is liable to heal him by paying for his medical costs. In a case where growths, e.g., blisters or rashes, appeared on the injured party, if the growths are due to the blow, the one who struck him is liable; if the growths are not due to the blow, the one who struck him is exempt. In a case where the wound healed, and then reopened, and again healed, and then reopened, the one who struck him remains liable to heal the injured party by paying for his medical costs, as it is apparent that the current wound resulted from the original injury. If the injury healed fully, the one who struck him is not liable to heal him by paying for any subsequent medical costs. How is payment for loss of livelihood assessed? The court views the injured party as though he were a watchman of cucumbers, and the one who caused him injury must compensate him based on that pay scale for the income that he lost during his convalescence. This indemnity does not take into account the value of the standard wages of the injured party because the one who caused him injury already gave him compensation for his hand or compensation for his leg, and that compensation took into account his professional skills. How is payment for humiliation assessed? It all depends on the stature of the one who humiliates the other and the one who is humiliated. One who humiliates a naked person, or one who humiliates a blind person, or one who humiliates a sleeping person is liable, but a sleeping person who humiliates another is exempt. If one fell from the roof onto another person, and thereby caused him damage and humiliated him, then the one who fell is liable for the indemnity of damage, since a person is always considered forewarned, and exempt from the indemnity of humiliation, as it is stated: “and putting out her hand, she takes hold of his private parts” (Deuteronomy 25:11); a person is not liable for humiliation unless he intends to humiliate the other person.
This halakha is a stringency with regard to a person who caused injury, compared to the halakha with regard to an ox that caused injury: The halakha is that the person pays compensation for damage, pain, medical costs, loss of livelihood, and humiliation; and if he caused a woman to miscarry he also pays compensation for miscarried offspring, as the verse states (see Exodus 21:22). But in the case of an ox that caused injury, the owner pays only compensation for damage, and he is exempt from paying compensation for miscarried offspring.
The mishna continues: One who strikes his father or his mother but did not cause them to have a bruise, and therefore is not liable to receive court-imposed capital punishment, and one who injures another on Yom Kippur, the punishment for which is not court-imposed capital punishment, is liable to pay for all of the five types of indemnity. One who injures a Hebrew slave is liable to pay for all of the five types of indemnity. This is except for compensation for loss of livelihood suffered during the time that the injured slave belongs to the one that injured him. Since the right to the slave’s labor belongs to his master, his inability to work is his master’s loss. One who injures a Canaanite slave belonging to others is liable to pay for all of the five types of indemnity. Rabbi Yehuda says: Canaanite slaves do not have humiliation, so the one who injures the slave pays only the other four types of indemnity.
The mishna continues: With regard to a deaf-mute, an imbecile, or a minor, an encounter with them is disadvantageous. In other words, no favorable outcome is possible for someone involved in an incident with one of these people, since one who injures them is liable. But if they were the ones who injured others, they are exempt. This is because they lack awareness and are not responsible for their actions. Similarly, with regard to a slave and a married woman, an encounter with them is disadvantageous, since one who injures them is liable. But if they were the ones who injured others, they are exempt, because they do not have money with which to pay compensation. But they pay compensation at a later time. The exemption is only temporary, as, if the woman becomes divorced or the slave becomes emancipated, and they then have their own money, they are liable to pay compensation.
The mishna continues: One who strikes his father or his mother and causes them to have a bruise, or one who injures another on Shabbat, is exempt from paying all of the five types of indemnity, because he is judged with losing his life. The court imposes capital punishment for these acts, so there is no additional monetary punishment. And one who injures his own Canaanite slave is exempt from paying all of the five types of indemnity, because his slave is his property.
One who strikes another must give him a sela. Rabbi Yehuda says in the name of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili that he must give him one hundred dinars. If he slapped another on the cheek, he must give him two hundred dinars. If he slapped him on the cheek with the back of his hand, which is more degrading than a slap with the palm, he must give him four hundred dinars. If he pulled his ear, or pulled out his hair, or spat at him and his spittle reached him, or if he removed the other’s cloak from him, or if he uncovered the head of a woman in the marketplace, in all of these cases, he must give the injured party four hundred dinars. This is the principle of assessing payment for humiliation caused to another: It is all evaluated in accordance with the honor of the one who was humiliated, as the Gemara will explain. Rabbi Akiva said: Even with regard to the poor among the Jewish people, they are viewed as though they were freemen who lost their property and were impoverished. And their humiliation is calculated according to this status, as they are the children of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and are all of prominent lineage. The mishna relates: And an incident occurred involving one who uncovered the head of a woman in the marketplace, and the woman came before Rabbi Akiva to request that he render the assailant liable to pay for the humiliation that she suffered, and Rabbi Akiva rendered the assailant liable to give her four hundred dinars. The man said to Rabbi Akiva: My teacher, give me time to pay the penalty, and Rabbi Akiva gave him time. The man then waited for her until she was standing by the opening of her courtyard, and he broke a jug in front of her, and there was the value of about an issar of oil inside the jug. The woman then exposed her own head and she was wetting [metapaḥat] her hand in the oil, and placing her hand on her head to make use of the oil. The man set up witnesses to observe her actions, and he came before Rabbi Akiva, and he said to him: Will I give four hundred dinars to this woman for having uncovered her head? By uncovering her head for a minimal benefit, she has demonstrated that this does not cause her humiliation. Rabbi Akiva said to him: You did not say anything, i.e., this claim will not exempt you. One who injures himself, although it is not permitted for him to do so, is nevertheless exempt from any sort of penalty, but others who injured him are liable to pay him. In this case as well, the man was liable to compensate the woman for shaming her, despite the fact that she did the same to herself. Similarly, one who cuts down his own saplings, although it is not permitted for him to do so, as this violates the prohibition of: “You shall not destroy” (see Deuteronomy 20:19), is exempt from any penalty, but others who cut down his saplings are liable to pay him.
Despite the fact that the assailant who caused damage gives to the victim all of the required payments for the injury, his transgression is not forgiven for him in the heavenly court until he requests forgiveness from the victim, as it is stated that God told Abimelech after he had taken Sarah from Abraham: “Now therefore restore the wife of the man; for he is a prophet, and he shall pray for you, and you shall live” (Genesis 20:7). And from where is it derived that if the victim does not forgive him that he is cruel? As it is stated: “And Abraham prayed to God; and God healed Abimelech, and his wife, and his maidservants; and they bore children” (Genesis 20:17). The mishna continues: With regard to one who says to another: Blind my eye, or: cut off my hand, or: break my leg, and he does so, the one who performed these actions is liable to pay for the damage, despite having been instructed to do so. Even if he explicitly instructed him: Do so on the condition that you will be exempt from payment, he is nevertheless liable. With regard to one who says to another: Tear my garment, or: break my jug, and he does so, he is liable to pay for the damage. But if he instructed him explicitly: Do so on the condition that you will be exempt from payment, he is exempt from payment. If one says to another: Do so, i.e., cause damage, to so-and-so on the condition that you will be exempt from payment, and he did so, he is liable, whether the instructions were with regard to the victim himself, or whether the instructions were with regard to his property.