אָמַר שְׁמוּאֵל: בִּיתֵדוֹת. Shmuel said: It is referring to the stakes of the Tabernacle. Before the Levites would place the beams on the wagon, they would position the stakes, which were particularly narrow. Therefore, the space between them was greater than three handbreadths, and the area beneath the wagons was therefore considered an uncovered public domain (ge’onim).
תָּנוּ רַבָּנַן: קְרָשִׁים מִלְּמַטָּן עוֹבְיָין אַמָּה, וּמִלְּמַעְלָן כָּלִין וְהוֹלְכִין עַד כְּאֶצְבַּע, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: ״יִהְיוּ תַמִּים עַל רֹאשׁוֹ״, וּלְהַלָּן הוּא אוֹמֵר: ״תַּמּוּ נִכְרָתוּ״. דִּבְרֵי רַבִּי יְהוּדָה. רַבִּי נְחֶמְיָה אוֹמֵר: כְּשֵׁם שֶׁמִּלְּמַטָּן עוֹבְיָין אַמָּה, כָּךְ מִלְּמַעְלָן עוֹבְיָין אַמָּה, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: ״יַחְדָּיו״. The Sages taught: The Tabernacle beams were one cubit thick at the bottom, and they narrowed to a fingerbreadth as they reached the top, as it is stated: “And they shall match at the bottom, and together they will be ended [tamim] at the top toward a single ring; so shall it be for them both, they shall form the two corners” (Exodus 26:24). And below, when the children of Israel crossed the Jordan River, it says: “And those who went down toward the Sea of Arava at the Dead Sea came to an end [tamu]” (Joshua 3:16). Tam means finished or terminated. Here, too, the beams narrowed as they reached the top until they were virtually terminated; this is the statement of Rabbi Yehuda. Rabbi Neḥemya says: Just as they were one cubit thick at the bottom, so too, they were one cubit thick at the top, as it is stated: Together.
וְהָכְתִיב ״תַּמִּים״! הַהוּא דְּלֵיתוֹ שַׁלְמִין וְלָא לֵיתוֹ דְּנִיסְרָא. וְאִידַּךְ נָמֵי, הָכְתִיב ״יַחְדָּו״! הָהוּא דְּלָא לִישַׁלְחוֹפִינְהוּ מֵהֲדָדֵי. The Gemara asks: Isn’t it written: Tamim? The Gemara answers: Rabbi Neḥemya explains that this word teaches that they should bring whole beams and they should not bring planks and attach them. The Gemara asks: And according to the other opinion, Rabbi Yehuda’s opinion, isn’t it written: Together? The Gemara answers: That comes to teach that they should not be positioned askew from each other; rather, they should be perfectly aligned.
בִּשְׁלָמָא לְמַאן דְּאָמַר כְּשֵׁם שֶׁמִּלְּמַטָּן עוֹבְיָין אַמָּה כָּךְ מִלְּמַעְלָן עוֹבְיָין אַמָּה, הַיְינוּ דִּכְתִיב: ״וּלְיַרְכְּתֵי הַמִּשְׁכָּן יָמָּה תַּעֲשֶׂה שִׁשָּׁה קְרָשִׁים. וּשְׁנֵי קְרָשִׁים תַּעֲשֶׂה לִמְקֻצְעֹת״ — דְּאָתֵי פּוּתְיָא דְהָנֵי, מְמַלֵּי לֵיהּ לְסוּמְכָא דְהָנֵי. אֶלָּא לְמַאן דְּאָמַר מִלְּמַטָּן עוֹבְיָין אַמָּה, מִלְּמַעְלָן כָּלִין וְהוֹלְכִין עַד כְּאֶצְבַּע, הַאי עָיֵיל וְהַאי נָפֵיק! דְּשָׁפֵי לְהוּ כִּי טוּרִין. The Gemara asks further: Granted, according to the one who said: Just as they were one cubit thick at the bottom, so too, they were one cubit thick at the top, it is understandable why it is written: “And for the back of the Tabernacle westward you shall make six beams. And you shall make two beams for the corners of the Tabernacle in the back” (Exodus 26:22–23). This means that the width of these beams comes and covers the remaining thickness of those. However, according to the one who said that they were one cubit thick at the bottom and they narrowed to a fingerbreadth as they reached the top, they would not be perfectly aligned, as at the corners this beam goes in and this beam goes out. Part of the beam would protrude out of the Tabernacle. The Gemara answers that it was not only the thickness of the beam that narrowed. One pared the width of the beams as well so they were sloped like mountains and did not protrude.
״וְהַבְּרִיחַ הַתִּיכֹן בְּתוֹךְ הַקְּרָשִׁים״, תָּנָא: בְּנֵס הָיָה עוֹמֵד. Following the dispute over the Tabernacle beams, the Gemara interprets other verses according to the two positions. It is written: “And the middle bar in the midst of the beams shall pass through from end to end” (Exodus 26:28). One of the Sages taught: It stood by means of a miracle, as this verse indicates that the middle bar was a single rod that ran along the length and width of the Tabernacle. The middle bar was miraculously bent through the beams on three sides.
״וְאֶת הַמִּשְׁכָּן תַּעֲשֶׂה עֶשֶׂר יְרִיעֹת ... אֹרֶךְ הַיְרִיעָה הָאַחַת שְׁמֹנֶה וְעֶשְׂרִים בָּאַמָּה״. שְׁדִי אוּרְכַּיְיהוּ לְפוּתְיָא דְמִשְׁכָּן, כַּמָּה הָוְיָא — עֶשְׂרִין וְתַמְנֵי. דַּל עֲשַׂר לְאִיגָּרָא — פָּשׁוּ לְהוּ תֵּשַׁע לְהַאי גִּיסָא וְתֵשַׁע לְהַאי גִּיסָא. לְרַבִּי יְהוּדָה מִיגַּלְּיָא אַמָּה דַאֲדָנִים, לְרַבִּי נְחֶמְיָה מִיגַּלְּיָא אַמָּה דִקְרָשִׁים. The Gemara cites a verse with regard to the dispute between Rabbi Yehuda and Rabbi Neḥemya: “And you shall make the Tabernacle with ten curtains…the length of each curtain shall be twenty-eight cubits and the width of each curtain four cubits; all the curtains shall have the same measurement” (Exodus 26:1–2). Place their length, i.e., the curtains’ length, across the width of the Tabernacle. How much was their length? It was twenty-eight cubits. Subtract ten cubits for the width of the roof of the Tabernacle, and nine cubits remain on this side, and nine on that side. According to Rabbi Yehuda, who maintains that the beams narrowed to a fingerbreadth, the cubit of the sockets was exposed, as the beams were ten cubits high and the bottom cubit of the beams was placed in the sockets. According to Rabbi Neḥemya, the cubit at the top of the beams must be added to the overall width of the Tabernacle. In addition to the cubit of the sockets, a cubit of the beams themselves was exposed.
שְׁדִי פּוּתַיְיהוּ לְאוּרְכֵּהּ דְּמִשְׁכָּן, כַּמָּה הָוְיָא — אַרְבְּעִין. דַּל תְּלָתִין לְאִיגָּרָא — פָּשָׁא לְהוּ עֲשַׂר, לְרַבִּי יְהוּדָה, מִכַּסְּיָא אַמָּה דַאֲדָנִים לְרַבִּי נְחֶמְיָה מִיגַּלְּיָא אַמָּה דַאֲדָנִים. Place their width, i.e., the curtains’ width, across the length of the Tabernacle. How much was their width? It was forty cubits. Subtract thirty cubits for the length of the Tabernacle’s roof and ten cubits remain. According to Rabbi Yehuda, who maintains that the beams narrowed to a fingerbreadth, the curtain hung down the western side of the Tabernacle and the cubit of the sockets was covered. According to Rabbi Neḥemya, the cubit of the sockets was exposed.
״וְעָשִׂיתָ יְרִיעֹת עִזִּים לְאֹהֶל וְגוֹ׳ אֹרֶךְ הַיְרִיעָה הָאַחַת שְׁלֹשִׁים בָּאַמָּה וְגוֹ׳״. שְׁדִי אוּרְכַּיְיהוּ לְפוּתְיָא דְמִשְׁכָּן, כַּמָּה הָוְיָא — תְּלָתִין, דַּל עֲשַׂר לְאִיגָּרָא, פָּשׁוּ לְהוּ עֲשַׂר לְהַאי גִּיסָא וַעֲשַׂר לְהַאי גִּיסָא. לְרַבִּי יְהוּדָה מִיכַּסְּיָא אַמָּה דַאֲדָנִים, לְרַבִּי נְחֶמְיָה מִיגַּלְּיָא אַמָּה דַאֲדָנִים. It is also written: “And you shall make curtains from goat hair for a tent over the Tabernacle; eleven curtains you shall make them. The length of each curtain shall be thirty cubits and the width of each curtain four cubits; each of the eleven curtains should have the same measurement” (Exodus 26:7–8). Place their length across the width of the Tabernacle. How much was their length? It was thirty cubits. Subtract ten for the width of the roof and there will remain ten on this side and ten on that side. According to Rabbi Yehuda, the cubit of the sockets was covered. According to Rabbi Neḥemya, the cubit of the sockets was exposed.
תַּנְיָא נָמֵי הָכִי: ״וְהָאַמָּה מִזֶּה וְהָאַמָּה מִזֶּה בָּעֹדֵף״ — לְכַסּוֹת אַמָּה שֶׁל אֲדָנִים, דִּבְרֵי רַבִּי יְהוּדָה. רַבִּי נְחֶמְיָה אוֹמֵר: לְכַסּוֹת אַמָּה שֶׁל קְרָשִׁים. שְׁדִי פּוּתַיְיהוּ לְאוּרְכֵּיהּ דְמִשְׁכָּן, כַּמָּה הָוְיָא? אַרְבְּעִין וְאַרְבְּעֵי. דַּל תְּלָתִין לְאִיגָּרָא — פָּשׁוּ לְהוּ אַרְבֵּסְרֵי. דַּל תַּרְתֵּי לְכַפְלָא, דִּכְתִיב: ״וְכָפַלְתָּ אֶת הַיְרִיעָה הַשִּׁשִּׁית אֶל מוּל פְּנֵי הָאֹהֶל״ — פָּשׁוּ לְהוּ תַּרְתֵּי סְרֵי. That was also taught in a baraita. The verse states, “And the cubit on the one side, and the cubit on the other side of what remains of the length of the curtains of the tent shall hang over the sides of the Tabernacle, on this side and on that side to cover it” (Exodus 26:13). What remains of the length of the curtains is to cover the cubit of the sockets; this is the statement of Rabbi Yehuda. Rabbi Neḥemya says: It is to cover the cubit of the beams. Place their width across the length of the Tabernacle. How much was their width? It was forty-four cubits. Subtract thirty for the roof, and fourteen remain. Subtract two for the doubling of the sixth curtain, as it is written: “And you shall double the sixth curtain over the front of the tent” (Exodus 26:9), and twelve remain.
בִּשְׁלָמָא לְרַבִּי יְהוּדָה, הַיְינוּ דִּכְתִיב: ״חֲצִי הַיְרִיעָה הָעֹדֶפֶת תִּסְרַח״. אֶלָּא לְרַבִּי נְחֶמְיָה, מַאי ״תִּסְרַח״? תִּסְרַח מֵחַבְרוֹתֶיהָ. תָּנָא דְּבֵי רַבִּי יִשְׁמָעֵאל: לְמָה מִשְׁכָּן דּוֹמֶה — לְאִשָּׁה שֶׁמְהַלֶּכֶת בַּשּׁוּק וְשִׁפּוּלֶיהָ מְהַלְּכִין אַחֲרֶיהָ. Granted, according to the opinion of Rabbi Yehuda, who maintains that the beams narrowed to a fingerbreadth, and therefore the top of the beams did not take up any of the width of the curtains, which enabled the curtain to cover the entire wall of the Tabernacle with part of the curtain on the ground, it is understandable why it is written: “And as for the overhanging part that remained from the curtains of the tent, the half curtain that remained shall hang over the back of the Tabernacle” (Exodus 26:12). However, according to Rabbi Neḥemya, who maintains that it is necessary for the width of the curtains to cover the thickness at the top of the beams, what is the meaning of the phrase shall hang? The Gemara answers: It means that it will hang more than the others. In his opinion, this curtain is two cubits longer than the other curtains covering the Tabernacle. With regard to this, the school of Rabbi Yishmael taught: To what is the Tabernacle similar? It is similar to a woman walking in the marketplace with her skirts following after her.
תָּנוּ רַבָּנַן: חֲרוּצִים הָיוּ קְרָשִׁים וַחֲלוּלִים הָיוּ אֲדָנִים, The Sages taught with regard to the construction of the Tabernacle: The bottoms of the beams were grooved and the sockets were hollow, and the grooves were inserted into the sockets to support the beams.