Sanhedrin 57b:13סנהדרין נ״ז ב
The William Davidson Talmudתלמוד מהדורת ויליאם דוידסון
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57bנ״ז ב

נהרג עליו

he is executed for killing him even though he acted in self-defense, and a descendant of Noah is also killed for this.

אשכח ר' יעקב בר אחא דהוה כתיב בספר אגדתא דבי רב בן נח נהרג בדיין א' ובעד אחד שלא בהתראה מפי איש ולא מפי אשה ואפילו קרוב משום רבי ישמעאל אמרו אף על העוברין

§ Rabbi Ya’akov bar Aḥa found that it was written in a book of Aggadot in the study hall of Rav: Contrary to the halakha with regard to a Jew, a descendant of Noah is executed on the basis of the verdict of even one judge, and by the testimony of even one witness, and without being given forewarning before committing the transgression. He can be judged or testified against only by the mouth of a man and not by the mouth of a woman; but even a relative may judge his case or testify against him. The Sages said in the name of Rabbi Yishmael that a descendant of Noah is executed even for killing fetuses.

מנהני מילי אמר רב יהודה דאמר קרא (בראשית ט, ה) אך את דמכם לנפשותיכם אדרוש אפילו בדיין אחד

The Gemara asks: From where are these matters derived? Rav Yehuda says: They are derived from that which the verse states: “And your blood of your lives I will require; at the hand of every animal I will require it; and at the hand of man, even at the hand of every man’s brother, I will require the life of man” (Genesis 9:5). It is derived from the term “I will require,” which is stated in the singular, that a descendant of Noah is executed on the basis of the verdict of even one judge.

(בראשית ט, ה) מיד כל חיה אפילו שלא בהתראה (בראשית ט, ה) אדרשנו ומיד האדם אפילו בעד אחד (בראשית ט, ה) מיד איש ולא מיד אשה אחיו אפילו קרוב

It is derived from the phrase “at the hand of every animal” that one is executed even without forewarning, as an animal certainly cannot forewarn someone. It is derived from the phrase “I will require it; and at the hand of man,” with “I” stated in the singular, that the sentence is issued on the basis of the testimony of even one witness. It is derived from the phrase “at the hand of every man,” that the judgment and testimony must be at the hand of a man, but not at the hand of a woman. It is derived from the term “his brother” that the testimony of the witness is accepted even if he is a relative of the defendant.

משום רבי ישמעאל אמרו אף על העוברין מאי טעמיה דרבי ישמעאל דכתיב (בראשית ט, ו) שופך דם האדם באדם דמו ישפך איזהו אדם שהוא באדם הוי אומר זה עובר שבמעי אמו

It is stated in that book of Aggadot that the Sages said in the name of Rabbi Yishmael: A descendant of Noah is executed even for killing fetuses. The Gemara asks: What is the reason for the opinion of Rabbi Yishmael? The Gemara answers: It is derived from that which is written: “One who sheds the blood of a person, by a person [ba’adam] his blood shall be shed” (Genesis 9:6). The word ba’adam literally means: In a person, and is interpreted homiletically: What is a person that is in a person? You must say: This is a fetus that is in its mother’s womb. Accordingly, a descendant of Noah is liable for killing a fetus.

ותנא קמא תנא דבי מנשה הוא דאמר כל מיתה האמורה לבני נח אינו אלא חנק ושדי ליה האי באדם אסיפיה דקרא ודרוש ביה הכי באדם דמו ישפך איזהו שפיכות דמים של אדם שהוא בגופו של אדם הוי אומר זה חנק

The Gemara comments: And the first tanna, who does not derive the halakha concerning fetuses, is the tanna of the school of Menashe, who says that all death penalties stated with regard to the descendants of Noah are referring to nothing other than strangulation. And he interprets this verse as follows: Cast, i.e., redirect, this term: “In a person,” and explain it with regard to the latter part of the verse, and interpret it homiletically like this: “In a person, his blood shall be shed.” In what manner is a person’s blood shed while it is in the person’s body, without external bleeding? You must say that this is strangulation. It is therefore derived that the execution of a descendant of Noah is by strangulation.

מתיב רב המנונא ואשה לא מפקדה והכתיב (בראשית יח, יט) כי ידעתיו למען אשר יצוה וגו'

Rav Hamnuna raises an objection to the statement in the book of Aggadot that a descendant of Noah can be judged or testified against only by a man and not by a woman: And is a woman who is a descendant of Noah not commanded to establish courts of judgment? But isn’t it written with regard to Abraham, who at that point had the status of a descendant of Noah: “For I have known him, to the end that he may command his sons and his household after him, that they may keep the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice” (Genesis 18:19). The word “household” is referring to the women, indicating that they are also commanded to execute justice.

הוא מותיב לה והוא מפרק לה בניו לדין ביתו לצדקה

He raises the objection and he resolves it: Abraham commanded his sons to carry out justice, whereas his household, the women in his family, he commanded to give charity; the Hebrew word for righteousness [tzedek] can also mean charity [tzedaka].

אמר ליה רב אויא סבא לרב פפא אימא בת נח שהרגה לא תיהרג מיד איש ולא מיד אשה כתיב אמר ליה הכי אמר רב יהודה שופך דם האדם מכל מקום

Rav Avya the Elder said to Rav Pappa: Why not say that a female descendant of Noah who killed someone should not be executed; as it is written: “At the hand of every man,” and not “at the hand of every woman”? Rav Pappa said to him: This is what Rav Yehuda says: It is derived from the phrase “one who sheds the blood of a person” that one who murders is liable to be executed in any case, whether that person is male or female.

אימא בת נח שזינתה לא תיהרג דכתיב (בראשית ב, כד) על כן יעזב איש ולא אשה א"ל הכי אמר רב יהודה (בראשית ב, כד) והיו לבשר אחד הדר ערבינהו קרא

Rav Avya asked further: Why not say that a female descendant of Noah who committed adultery should not be executed, as it is written: “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife, and they shall be one flesh” (Genesis 2:24); a man, but not a woman? Rav Pappa said to him: This is what Rav Yehuda says: At the end of the verse it states: “And they shall be one flesh.” The verse then combines men and women, indicating that the same halakha applies to both.

ת"ר איש מה תלמוד לומר (ויקרא יח, ו) איש איש לרבות את הכותים שמוזהרין על העריות כישראל

§ The Sages taught in a baraita with regard to the verse: “No one [ish ish] shall approach any that is kin to him, to uncover their nakedness” (Leviticus 18:6): The verse could have stated: One [ish] shall not approach. Why must the verse state “no one”? It is to include the gentiles, who are prohibited from engaging in forbidden sexual relations, as Jews are.

והא מהכא נפקא מהתם נפקא לאמר זה גילוי עריות

The Gemara asks: But is it derived from here? It is derived from there, from the verse that was already interpreted as teaching this halakha: “And the Lord God commanded the man, saying” (Genesis 2:16), this alludes to forbidden sexual relations (see 56b).

התם בעריות דידהו והכא בעריות דידן דקתני סיפא בא על עריות ישראל נידון בדיני ישראל

The Gemara answers: There, the verse is referring to their women, gentiles, with whom relations are forbidden. And here it is referring to our women, Jews, with whom relations are forbidden. In other words, a gentile who engages in intercourse with a married Jewish woman is liable. As it is taught in the latter clause of the baraita: If a gentile engages in intercourse with those Jewish women with whom relations are forbidden, i.e., a married Jewish woman, he is judged according to the halakhot of the Jews.

למאי הלכתא אמר רב נחמן אמר רבה בר אבוה לא נצרכה אלא לעדה ועדים והתראה

The Gemara asks: With regard to what halakha is this gentile judged according to the halakhot of the Jews? Rav Naḥman says that Rabba bar Avuh says: The statement of the baraita is necessary only to teach these halakhot: That he must be judged by a Sanhedrin, and that he is punished only if two witnesses testify concerning him, and only if he was issued a forewarning before his transgression.

מגרע גרע

The Gemara asks: Should the halakha of a gentile who engaged in intercourse with a forbidden Jewish woman be less stringent than that of a gentile who engaged in intercourse with a forbidden gentile woman, in which case these conditions do not apply?

אלא א"ר יוחנן לא נצרכה אלא לנערה המאורסה דלדידהו לית להו דדיינינן להו בדינא דידן

Rather, Rabbi Yoḥanan says: The statement of the baraita is necessary only to teach the halakha in the case of a gentile who engages in intercourse with a betrothed young Jewish woman, which does not apply to gentiles. By halakha, only marriage applies to gentiles, not betrothal. Therefore, we judge them according to our halakha in that case.

אבל אשת איש בדינא דידהו דיינינן להו והתניא בא על נערה המאורסה נידון בסקילה על אשת איש נידון בחנק ואי בדינא דידהו סייף הוא

The Gemara asks: And with regard to gentiles who engage in intercourse with a married Jewish woman, do we judge them according to their halakha? But isn’t it taught in a baraita: If a gentile engages in intercourse with a betrothed young Jewish woman, he is punished by stoning; if he engages in intercourse with a married Jewish woman he is punished by strangulation? The Gemara explains its question: And if they are judged according to their halakha, he would be executed by the sword.

אמר רב נחמן בר יצחק מאי אשת איש דקתני כגון שנכנסה לחופה ולא נבעלה דלדידהו לית להו דיינינן להו בדינא דידן

Rav Naḥman bar Yitzḥak says: What is the meaning of the phrase: A married woman, which the tanna teaches? It is referring to a case where the woman had entered the wedding canopy but had not yet engaged in intercourse with her husband, in which case she is considered married according to the halakhot that apply to Jews but not according to the halakhot that apply to gentiles. Since with regard to gentiles, marriage has not yet taken effect, we judge them according to our halakhot. Therefore, a gentile who engages in intercourse with such a Jewish woman is executed by strangulation.

דתני ר' חנינא בעולת בעל יש להן נכנסה לחופה ולא נבעלה אין להן

As Rabbi Ḥanina teaches: Gentiles can have the status of a married woman who has engaged in intercourse with her husband, i.e., such a woman is considered married according to their laws, but they cannot have the status of a married woman who has entered the wedding canopy but has not engaged in intercourse with her husband.

תניא כוותיה דר' יוחנן כל ערוה שב"ד של ישראל ממיתין עליה בן נח מוזהר עליה אין ב"ד של ישראל ממיתין עליה אין בן נח מוזהר עליה דברי רבי מאיר וחכמים אומרים הרבה עריות יש שאין בית דין של ישראל ממיתין עליהן ובן נח מוזהר עליהן

It is taught in a baraita in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yoḥanan: Any forbidden sexual relations for which a Jewish court administers capital punishment are prohibited to a descendant of Noah, and any forbidden sexual relations for which a Jewish court does not administer capital punishment are not prohibited to a descendant of Noah; this is the statement of Rabbi Meir. And the Rabbis say: There are many types of forbidden sexual relations for which a Jewish court does not administer capital punishment and are nevertheless prohibited to a descendant of Noah.

בא על עריות ישראל נידון בדיני ישראל בא על עריות בן נח נידון בדיני בן נח ואנו אין לנו אלא נערה המאורסה בלבד

If a gentile engages in intercourse with those Jews with whom relations are forbidden, he is judged according to the halakhot of the Jews. If he engages in intercourse with those descendants of Noah with whom relations are forbidden, he is judged according to the halakhot of the descendants of Noah. And we have only the case of a betrothed young woman as a case where a gentile is judged according to the halakhot of the Jews, in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yoḥanan.

ונחשוב נמי נכנסה לחופה ולא נבעלה האי תנא תנא דבי מנשה הוא דאמר כל מיתה האמורה לבני נח אינו אלא חנק אידי ואידי חנק הוא

The Gemara suggests: And let the tanna also count the case of a woman who had entered the wedding canopy but had not yet engaged in intercourse with her husband. The Gemara explains: This tanna is the tanna of the school of Menashe, who says that all death penalties stated with regard to the descendants of Noah are referring to nothing other than strangulation, and since the punishment in Jewish halakha for engaging in intercourse with a married woman is also strangulation, both this punishment and that punishment are strangulation; there is no difference between the halakha for Jews and the halakha for gentiles in such a case.

וסבר רבי מאיר כל ערוה שבית דין של ישראל ממיתין עליה בן נח מוזהר עליה והא תניא גר

With regard to the opinion of Rabbi Meir stated in the first clause of the baraita, the Gemara asks: And does Rabbi Meir hold that any forbidden sexual relations for which a Jewish court administers capital punishment is prohibited to a descendant of Noah? But isn’t it taught in a baraita: With regard to a convert