Chapter 8ח׳
1 א

הַצְדָקָה הֲרֵי הִיא בִּכְלַל הַנְּדָרִים. לְפִיכָךְ הָאוֹמֵר הֲרֵי עָלַי סֶלַע לִצְדָקָה אוֹ הֲרֵי סֶלַע זוֹ צְדָקָה חַיָּב לִתְּנָהּ לָעֲנִיִּים מִיָּד וְאִם אִחֵר עָבַר בְּ (דברים כג כב) "בַל תְּאַחֵר" שֶׁהֲרֵי בְּיָדוֹ לִתֵּן מִיָּד וַעֲנִיִּים מְצוּיִין הֵן. אֵין שָׁם עֲנִיִּים מַפְרִישׁ וּמַנִּיחַ עַד שֶׁיִּמְצָא עֲנִיִּים. וְאִם הִתְנָה שֶׁלֹּא יִתֵּן עַד שֶׁיִּמְצָא עָנִי אֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ לְהַפְרִישׁ. וְכֵן אִם הִתְנָה בְּשָׁעָה שֶׁנָּדַר בִּצְדָקָה אוֹ הִתְנַדֵּב אוֹתוֹ שֶׁיִּהְיוּ הַגַּבָּאִין רַשָּׁאִין לְשַׁנּוֹתָהּ וּלְצָרְפָהּ בְּזָהָב הֲרֵי אֵלּוּ מֻתָּרִין:

A [pledge to] tzedakah is a form of a vow, and therefore one who says, "I pledge to give a selah for tzedakah," or "This selah is for tzedakah" is obligated to give it to the poor immediately,144See Babylonian Talmud Rosh Hashanah 6a. and if he delays, then he has transgressed the commandment not to delay [fulfilling a vow] (Deut. 23:22). Thus, if poor people can be found there [when he makes the vow], he should give it [to them] immediately. If there are no poor people there, he should set it aside and leave it until he happens upon some poor people. But if he stipulates that he will not give [the coin] until he encounters a poor person, then he need not set it aside. So also if he makes the condition at the time he took the vow for tzedakah or to donate something that the collectors are permitted to exchange it or to change it with a goldsmith, then they are permitted to do so.

2 ב

הַמַּתְפִּיס בִּצְדָקָה חַיָּב כִּשְׁאָר הַנְּדָרִים. כֵּיצַד. אָמַר הֲרֵי סֶלַע זוֹ כְּזוֹ הֲרֵי זוֹ צְדָקָה. הַמַּפְרִישׁ סֶלַע וְאָמַר הֲרֵי זוֹ צְדָקָה וְלָקַח סֶלַע שְׁנִיָּה וְאָמַר וְזוֹ הֲרֵי שְׁנִיָּה צְדָקָה. וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא פֵּרֵשׁ:

One who connects pledges of tzedakah is as obligated with one vow as with another. How so? [This applies] if he said, "This selah is like that selah, then that one is for tzedakah." If he sets aside a selah and said, "This is for tzedakah," and then he took out a second selah and said, "And this second one is for tzedakah" even though he did not set it aside from the start.145See Babylonian Talmud Nedarim 7a.

3 ג

הַנּוֹדֵר צְדָקָה וְלֹא יָדַע כַּמָּה נָדַר יִתֵּן עַד שֶׁיֹּאמַר לֹא לְכָךְ נִתְכַּוַּנְתִּי:

One who took a vow for tzedakah without knowing how much he vowed should give until he says, "This is not what I intended."146See Mishnah Menachot 13:4.

4 ד

אֶחָד הָאוֹמֵר סֶלַע זוֹ צְדָקָה אוֹ הָאוֹמֵר הֲרֵי עָלַי סֶלַע לִצְדָקָה וְהִפְרִישׁוֹ. אִם רָצָה לְשַׁנּוֹתוֹ בְּאַחֵר מֻתָּר. וְאִם מִשֶּׁהִגִּיעַ לְיַד הַגַּבַּאי אָסוּר לְשַׁנּוֹתוֹ. וְאִם רָצוּ הַגַּבָּאִים לְצָרֵף הַמָּעוֹת וְלַעֲשׂוֹתָן דִּינָרִין אֵינָן רַשָּׁאִין אֶלָּא אִם אֵין שָׁם עֲנִיִּים לְחַלֵּק מְצָרְפִין לַאֲחֵרִים. אֲבָל לֹא לְעַצְמָן:

If one says, "This selah is for tzedakah," or one who says, "I owe a selah for tzedakah," and sets one aside, if he wants to, he may exchange it [that particular coin] for another, but if it has reached the hand of the collector, it is forbidden to exchange it. If the collectors want to combine the small coins for dinarin [which are of larger value], they are only permitted to do so if there are no poor people around to whom they need to distribute it. They may combine the coins [for coins of larger value] for the sake of others, but not for themselves.147See Babylonian Talmud Arachin 6a.

5 ה

הָיָה לַעֲנִיִּים הֲנָאָה בְּעִכּוּב הַמָּעוֹת בְּיַד הַגַּבַּאי כְּדֵי לַעֲשׂוֹת לַאֲחֵרִים לִתֵּן. הֲרֵי אוֹתוֹ הַגַּבַּאי מֻתָּר לִלְווֹת אוֹתָם הַמָּעוֹת שֶׁל עֲנִיִּים וּפוֹרֵעַ. שֶׁהַצְּדָקָה אֵינָהּ כְּהֶקְדֵּשׁ שֶׁאָסוּר לֵהָנוֹת בּוֹ:

If the poor would benefit from keeping the coins in the possession of the collector so that they would thereby make others give [because they would see money in the box and feel compelled to give as others have done], then that collector is permitted to borrow the coins of the poor and make payments [with them], for tzedakah is not like sanctified property from which it is forbidden to derive any benefit.148See Babylonian Talmud Arakhin 6b.

6 ו

מִי שֶׁהִתְנַדֵּב מְנוֹרָה אוֹ נֵר לְבֵית הַכְּנֶסֶת אָסוּר לְשַׁנּוֹתָהּ. וְאִם לִדְבַר מִצְוָה מֻתָּר לְשַׁנּוֹתָהּ. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא נִשְׁתַּקַּע שֵׁם בְּעָלֶיהָ מֵעָלֶיהָ. אֶלָּא אוֹמְרִים זוֹ הַמְּנוֹרָה אוֹ נֵר שֶׁל פְּלוֹנִי. וְאִם נִשְׁתַּקַּע שֵׁם הַבְּעָלִים מֵעָלֶיהָ מֻתָּר לְשַׁנּוֹתָהּ אֲפִלּוּ לִדְבַר הָרְשׁוּת:

If someone who donates a menorah or a lamp to a synagogue, it is forbidden to exchange it, but if it is for the sake of a mitzvah, it is permitted to exchange it even though the name of the donor has not become lost and people can say, "That menorah" or "That light is from so-and-so." And if the name of the donor became lost [with all the other goods and donations], then it is even possible to exchange it for a secular matter [as opposed to a mitzvah].149See Babylonian Talmud Arakhin 6b.

7 ז

בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בְּשֶׁהָיָה הַמִּתְנַדֵּב יִשְׂרָאֵל. אֲבָל אִם הָיָה עַכּוּ''ם אָסוּר לְשַׁנּוֹתָהּ אֲפִלּוּ לִדְבַר מִצְוָה עַד שֶׁיִּשְׁתַּקֵּעַ שֵׁם בְּעָלֶיהָ מֵעָלֶיהָ. שֶׁמָּא יֹאמַר הָעַכּוּ''ם הִקְדַּשְׁתִּי דָּבָר לְבֵית הַכְּנֶסֶת שֶׁל יְהוּדִים וּמְכָרוּהוּ לְעַצְמָן:

To what does this refer? To a situation when a Jew makes the donation, but if a Gentile makes a donation, it is forbidden to exchange it, even for the sake of a mitzvah, until the donor's identity has become lost, lest the Gentile say, "I consecrated something to the synagogue of the Jews, and they sold it for themselves."150See Babylonian Talmud Arakhin 6b.

8 ח

עַכּוּ''ם שֶׁהִתְנַדֵּב לְבֶדֶק הַבַּיִת אֵין מְקַבְּלִין מִמֶּנּוּ לְכַתְּחִלָּה. וְאִם לָקְחוּ מִמֶּנּוּ אֵין מַחְזִירִין לוֹ. הָיָה הַדָּבָר מְסֻיָּם כְּגוֹן קוֹרָה אוֹ אֶבֶן מַחְזִירִין לוֹ כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא יְהֵא לָהֶן דָּבָר מְסֻיָּם בַּמִּקְדָּשׁ שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (עזרא ד ג) "לֹא לָכֶם וָלָנוּ" וְגוֹ'. אֲבָל לְבֵית הַכְּנֶסֶת מְקַבְּלִין מֵהֶן לְכַתְּחִלָּה. וְהוּא שֶׁיֹּאמַר כְּדַעַת יִשְׂרָאֵל הִפְרַשְׁתִּי. וְאִם לֹא אָמַר טָעוּן גְּנִיזָה שֶׁמָּא לִבּוֹ לַשָּׁמַיִם. וְאֵין מְקַבְּלִים מֵהֶם לְחוֹמַת יְרוּשָׁלַיִם וְלֹא לְאַמַּת הַמַּיִם שֶׁבָּהּ שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (נחמיה ב כ) "וְלָכֶם אֵין חֵלֶק וְזִכָּרוֹן בִּירוּשָׁלָיִם":

If a Gentile donated something to the Temple fund [for the Temple in Jerusalem], they may not accept [it] before the fact, but if they already took it from him, they may not return it to him. If it is something affixed, such as a beam or a stone, they do return it to him so that something permanent will not be in the Holy Temple, as it is said, (Ezra 4:3) It is not for you and us [to build a House to our God, but we alone will build it]. But in the case of a synagogue, they may accept it right from the start, so long as he says, "I dedicated something with the [same] intention of a Jew," and if he did not say so, it may be preserved in storage in that his intention may be for the sake of heaven. They may not accept anything [from Gentiles] for the walls of Jerusalem or for the water channel there, as it is said, (Nehemiah 2:20) But you have no share or claim or stake in Jerusalem!151See Babylonian Talmud Arakhin 6a.

9 ט

אָסוּר לְיִשְׂרָאֵל לִטּל צְדָקָה מִן הָעַכּוּ''ם בְּפַרְהֶסְיָא. וְאִם אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לִחְיוֹת בִּצְדָקָה שֶׁל יִשְׂרָאֵל וְאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לִטְּלָהּ מִן הָעַכּוּ''ם בְּצִנְעָה הֲרֵי זֶה מֻתָּר. וּמֶלֶךְ אוֹ שַׂר מִן הָעַכּוּ''ם שֶׁשָּׁלַח מָמוֹן לְיִשְׂרָאֵל לִצְדָקָה אֵין מַחְזִירִין אוֹתוֹ לוֹ מִשּׁוּם שְׁלוֹם מַלְכוּת. אֶלָּא נוֹטְלִין מִמֶּנּוּ וְיִנָּתֵן לַעֲנִיֵּי עַכּוּ''ם בַּסֵּתֶר כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא יִשְׁמַע הַמֶּלֶךְ:

It is forbidden for a Jew to take tzedakah from a Gentile in public, but if he is not able to live on the tzedakah of Israel and cannot take tzedakah from the Gentiles in private, then he may do so in public. If a king or a noble of the Gentiles sends money to a Jewish community for tzedakah, they may not send it back for the sake of the peace of the kingdom, but rather they take it and give it to the poor of the Gentiles in secret so that the king will not hear.152See Babylonian Talmud Sanhedrin 26b. However, it only states that those who accept charity from Gentiles in public when there is an alternative are ineligible to be witnesses.

10 י

פִּדְיוֹן שְׁבוּיִים קוֹדֵם לְפַרְנָסַת עֲנִיִּים וְלִכְסוּתָן. וְאֵין לְךָ מִצְוָה גְּדוֹלָה כְּפִדְיוֹן שְׁבוּיִים שֶׁהַשָּׁבוּי הֲרֵי הוּא בִּכְלַל הָרְעֵבִים וְהַצְּמֵאִים וַעֲרוּמִּים וְעוֹמֵד בְּסַכָּנַת נְפָשׁוֹת. וְהַמַּעֲלִים עֵינָיו מִפִּדְיוֹנוֹ הֲרֵי זֶה עוֹבֵר עַל (דברים טו ז) "לֹא תְאַמֵּץ אֶת לְבָבְךָ וְלֹא תִקְפֹּץ אֶת יָדְךָ" וְעַל (ויקרא יט טז) "לֹא תַעֲמֹד עַל דַּם רֵעֶךָ" וְעַל (ויקרא כה נג) "לֹא יִרְדֶּנּוּ בְּפֶרֶךְ לְעֵינֶיךָ". וּבִטֵּל מִצְוַת (דברים טו ח) (דברים טו יא) "פָתֹחַ תִּפְתַּח אֶת יָדְךָ לוֹ". וּמִצְוַת (ויקרא כה לו) "וְחֵי אָחִיךָ עִמָּךְ". (ויקרא יט יח) "וְאָהַבְתָּ לְרֵעֲךָ כָּמוֹךָ". (משלי כד יא) "וְהַצֵּל לְקֻחִים לַמָּוֶת" וְהַרְבֵּה דְּבָרִים כָּאֵלּוּ. וְאֵין לְךָ מִצְוָה רַבָּה כְּפִדְיוֹן שְׁבוּיִים:

The redemption of captives held for ransom takes precedence over sustaining the poor and clothing them. You do not find a mitzvah greater than the redemption of captives, for captivity is in the same category as famine, drought, or exposure, and one stands in danger to one's life. One who averts his eyes from redeeming [the captive] transgresses [the commandment], (Deut. 15:7) Do not harden your heart and shut your hand, and (Lev. 19:16) Do not stand upon the blood of your neighbor, and (Lev. 25:53) He shall not rule ruthlessly over him in your sight, and nullifies the commandment (Deut. 15:8) You must open your hand, and the commandment, (Lev. 25:36) Let him live by your side as your kinsman, and (Lev. 19:18) Love your fellow as yourself, and (Proverbs 24:11) If you refrained from rescuing those taken off to death, [those condemned to slaughter--if you say, "We knew nothing of it," surely He who fathoms hearts will discern], and many such sayings. You cannot find a greater mitzvah than the redemption of captives.153See Babylonian Talmud Bava Batra 8a-b on the importance of redeeming captives and Chullin 7a where Rabbi Phineas ben Yair travels to redeem captives and, on the way, a river parts for him, enabling him to pass through on dry land to fulfill his duty.

11 יא

אַנְשֵׁי הָעִיר שֶׁגָּבוּ מָעוֹת לְבִנְיַן בֵּית הַכְּנֶסֶת וּבָא לָהֶן דְּבַר מִצְוָה מוֹצִיאִין בּוֹ הַמָּעוֹת. קָנוּ אֲבָנִים וְקוֹרוֹת לֹא יִמְכְּרוּם לִדְבַר מִצְוָה אֶלָּא לְפִדְיוֹן שְׁבוּיִים. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהֵבִיאוּ אֶת הָאֲבָנִים וּגְדָרוּם וְאֶת הַקּוֹרוֹת וּפְסָלוּם וְהִתְקִינוּ הַכּל לַבִּנְיָן מוֹכְרִין הַכּל לְפִדְיוֹן שְׁבוּיִים בִּלְבַד. אֲבָל אִם בָּנוּ וְגָמְרוּ לֹא יִמְכְּרוּ אֶת בֵּית הַכְּנֶסֶת אֶלָּא יִגְבּוּ לְפִדְיוֹנָן מִן הַצִּבּוּר:

If people of a city have collected money for the building of a synagogue, and a matter of a mitzvah comes before them, they should use the money [for the mitzvah]. But if they already purchased stones and beams, they should only sell them in the case of redeeming captives. Even if they have brought the stones and made walls of them, beams and laid them out, they sell it all for the sake of redeeming captives and that alone, but if they have built and completed [the synagogue], they do not sell the synagogue. Rather, they collect for their [the captives'] redemption from the public.154On the public collection of charity, see Babylonian Talmud Bava Batra 8b.

12 יב

אֵין פּוֹדִין אֶת הַשְּׁבוּיִים בְּיֶתֶר עַל דְּמֵיהֶן מִפְּנֵי תִּקּוּן הָעוֹלָם. שֶׁלֹּא יִהְיוּ הָאוֹיְבִים רוֹדְפִין אַחֲרֵיהֶם לִשְׁבּוֹתָם. וְאֵין מַבְרִיחִין אֶת הַשְּׁבוּיִים מִפְּנֵי תִּקּוּן הָעוֹלָם שֶׁלֹּא יִהְיוּ הָאוֹיְבִים מַכְבִּידִין עֲלֵיהֶן אֶת הָעל וּמַרְבִּים בִּשְׁמִירָתָן:

They may not redeem the captives for more than their worth for the sake of civilization, so that the enemies will not pursue after them to enslave them [once they find out they are will to pay anything]. And they do not try to make the captives escape for the sake of civilization, so that the enemies will not increase the weight of their yoke and add more guards.155See Mishnah Gittin 4:6. The translation "for the sake of civilization" is used to try to capture the nuance that there is a duty to make the world a less chaotic and dangerous place.

13 יג

מִי שֶׁמָּכַר עַצְמוֹ וּבָנָיו לְעַכּוּ''ם אוֹ שֶׁלָּוָה מֵהֶן וְשָׁבוּ אוֹתָן אוֹ אֲסָרוּהוּ בְּהַלְוָאָתָן. פַּעַם רִאשׁוֹנָה וּשְׁנִיָּה מִצְוָה לִפְדּוֹתָן. שְׁלִישִׁית אֵין פּוֹדִין אוֹתָן. אֲבָל פּוֹדִין אֶת הַבָּנִים לְאַחַר מִיתַת אֲבִיהֶן. וְאִם בִּקְּשׁוּהוּ לְהָרְגוֹ פּוֹדִין אוֹתוֹ מִיָּדָם אֲפִלּוּ אַחַר כַּמָּה פְּעָמִים:

He who sells himself and his children to Gentiles or who takes a loan from them and becomes enslaved to them or is imprisoned because of the loan, the first and second time it is a mitzvah to redeem them. The third time they do not redeem him, but they redeem the children after the death of their father. But if they want to kill him, then they redeem him from their power, even if this is several times [that this has happened].156See Babylonian Talmud Gittin 46b-47a.

14 יד

עֶבֶד שֶׁנִּשְׁבָּה הוֹאִיל וְטָבַל לְשֵׁם עַבְדוּת וְקִבֵּל עָלָיו מִצְוֹת פּוֹדִין אוֹתוֹ כְּיִשְׂרָאֵל שֶׁנִּשְׁבָּה. וְשָׁבוּי שֶׁהֵמִיר לְעַכּוּ''ם וַאֲפִלּוּ לְמִצְוָה אַחַת כְּגוֹן שֶׁהָיָה אוֹכֵל נְבֵלָה לְהַכְעִיס וְכַיּוֹצֵא בּוֹ אָסוּר לִפְדּוֹתוֹ:

In the case of a slave who was taken captive, if he immersed himself for the sake of servitude and he accepted upon himself the duty of the mitzvot, they redeem him as if he were a Jew who had been taken captive. But if the prisoner rebels and joins the idolaters, even if it is by [transgressing] one mitzvah, such as the prohibition against eating carrion, in order to infuriate [the Jewish community], etc., it is forbidden to redeem him.157See Babylonian Talmud Gittin 37b and 47a.

15 טו

הָאִשָּׁה קוֹדֶמֶת לְאִישׁ לְהַאֲכִיל וְלִכְסוּת וּלְהוֹצִיא מִבֵּית הַשֶּׁבִי. מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהָאִישׁ דַּרְכּוֹ לְחַזֵּר לֹא הָאִשָּׁה וּבָשְׁתָּהּ מְרֻבָּה. וְאִם הָיוּ שְׁנֵיהֶם בַּשִּׁבְיָה וְנִתְבְּעוּ שְׁנֵיהֶן לִדְבַר עֲבֵרָה הָאִישׁ קוֹדֵם לִפְדּוֹת לְפִי שֶׁאֵין דַּרְכּוֹ לְכָךְ:

A woman takes precedence over a man for feeding, clothing, and bringing out of prison, because it is more usual for men to go door to door [to beg] and not for a woman who feels great shame in this. But if both of them [a man and a woman] were in captivity and were in danger of being violated sexually, the man takes precedence for redemption, because this is not the way of things.158See Mishnah Horayot 3:7, Babylonian Talmud Ketubot 67a.

16 טז

יָתוֹם וִיתוֹמָה שֶׁבָּאוּ לְהַשִּׂיא אוֹתָן מַשִּׂיאִין הָאִשָּׁה קֹדֶם לָאִישׁ מִפְּנֵי שֶׁבָּשְׁתָּהּ שֶׁל אִשָּׁה מְרֻבָּה. וְלֹא יִפְחֲתוּ לָהּ מִמִּשְׁקַל שִׁשָּׁה דִּינָרִים וּרְבִיעַ דִּינָר שֶׁל כֶּסֶף טָהוֹר. וְאִם יֵשׁ בְּכִיס שֶׁל צְדָקָה נוֹתְנִין לָהּ לְפִי כְּבוֹדָהּ:

In the case of a male orphan and a female orphan who come [to the authorities of the community] to get married [but not to each other], the female [orphan] takes precedence over the man, because she feels great shame in this.159See Babylonian Talmud Ketubot 67a-b. And they may not give her less than the worth of six and a quarter dinar of pure silver, and if they have more in the bank of tzedakah, they give to her according to her honor.160See Mishnah Ketubot 6:5.

17 יז

הָיוּ לְפָנֵינוּ עֲנִיִּים הַרְבֵּה אוֹ שְׁבוּיִים הַרְבֵּה וְאֵין בַּכִּיס כְּדֵי לְפַרְנֵס אוֹ כְּדֵי לְכַסּוֹת אוֹ כְּדֵי לִפְדּוֹת אֶת כֻּלָּן. מַקְדִּימִין אֶת הַכֹּהֵן לַלֵּוִי. וְלֵוִי לְיִשְׂרָאֵל. וְיִשְׂרָאֵל לְחָלָל. וְחָלָל לִשְׁתוּקִי. וּשְׁתוּקִי לַאֲסוּפִי. וַאֲסוּפִי לְמַמְזֵר. וּמַמְזֵר לְנָתִין. וְנָתִין לְגֵר. שֶׁהַנָּתִין גָּדַל עִמָּנוּ בִּקְדֻשָּׁה. וְגֵר קוֹדֵם לְעֶבֶד מְשֻׁחְרָר. לְפִי שֶׁהָיָה בִּכְלַל אָרוּר:

If we have before us many poor people or many captives, and there is not enough in the fund to sustain them, or to clothe them, or to redeem them all, a priest takes precedence over a Levite, a Levite over a [regular] Jew, a Jew over a chalel [an illegitimate child of a priest], a chalel over a shetuki [an illegitimate child with an unknown father], a shetuki over a asufi [a foundling], an asufi over a mamzer [a child who was conceived in a union forbidden by the Torah], a mamzer over a natin [a descendent of the Gibeonites], and a natin over a stranger, so long as the natin was praised with us in holiness, and a convert takes precedence over a freed slave, for he [the slave] was once one of the cursed.161See Mishnah Horayot 3:8.

18 יח

בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בְּשֶׁהָיוּ שְׁנֵיהֶן שָׁוִין בְּחָכְמָה. אֲבָל אִם הָיָה כֹּהֵן גָּדוֹל עַם הָאָרֶץ וּמַמְזֵר תַּלְמִיד חָכָם. תַּלְמִיד חָכָם קוֹדֵם. וְכָל הַגָּדוֹל בְּחָכְמָה קוֹדֵם אֶת חֲבֵרוֹ. וְאִם הָיָה אֶחָד מֵהֶן רַבּוֹ אוֹ אָבִיו אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁיֵּשׁ שָׁם גָּדוֹל מֵהֶן בְּחָכְמָה. רַבּוֹ אוֹ אָבִיו שֶׁהוּא תַּלְמִיד חָכָם קוֹדֵם לָזֶה שֶׁהוּא גָּדוֹל מֵהֶם בְּחָכְמָה:

To what does this refer? When both who are imprisoned are equal in wisdom. But if there was a High Priest who was an ignoramus and a mamzer who was a wise disciple, the wise disciple takes precedence. Anyone who is great in wisdom takes precedence over another. But if one of them [the captives] was one's rabbi or father, even if there is someone who is greater in wisdom, one's rabbi or father [takes precedence]. Even if there is someone there [among the captives] who is greater in wisdom than his rabbi or his father, so long as he [his father or rabbi] is a wise disciple, he [the father or the rabbi] takes precedence over the one who is greater than them in wisdom.162See Mishnah Horayot 3:8 and Babylonian Talmud Horayot 13a.