Yevamot 25b:2יבמות כ״ה ב:ב
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25bכ״ה ב

גזלן דדבריהם כשר לעדות אשה גזלן דדברי תורה פסול לעדות אשה נימא רב מנשה דאמר כר' יהודה

Although one who is considered a robber according to the words of the Sages is unfit for other forms of testimony, he is fit as a witness for testimony that a woman’s husband died. A robber according to Torah law is unfit as a witness even for testimony that a woman’s husband has died. Should we say that what Rav Menashe said is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yehuda? Rabbi Yehuda said in the mishna that one who is considered absolutely wicked because he admitted that he is a murderer is unfit for testifying to the death of a husband, but one who was merely present among a gang of murderers is not.

אמר לך רב מנשה אנא דאמרי אפילו לרבנן וטעמא דרבנן הכא כדרבא דאמר רבא אדם קרוב אצל עצמו ואין אדם משים עצמו רשע

The Gemara rejects this: Rav Menashe could have said to you: I am speaking even according to the opinion of the Rabbis. Although the Rabbis did not allow one who was wicked by Torah law to testify for a woman, a witness who admitted: I killed him, is nevertheless believed. And the rationale of the Rabbis here is in accordance with the opinion of Rava, as Rava disputed Rav Yosef’s opinion and said: Even if one said that he was willingly sodomized by this man, he is not believed concerning his own actions, because a person is his own relative. Consequently, he may not testify about himself, just as the testimony of any relative is disqualified. And furthermore, a person does not make himself wicked. His testimony with regard to his own actions is inadmissible because he is his own relative, but his testimony is accepted both to put a sodomizer to death or to render it permitted for a woman to remarry by saying that he killed her husband.

לימא רב יוסף דאמר כרבי יהודה אמר לך רב יוסף אנא דאמרי אפי' לרבנן ושאני עדות אשה דאקילו בה רבנן ורב מנשה דאמר כרבי יהודה:

The Gemara asks: Shall we say according to this explanation that the opinion that Rav Yosef spoke is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yehuda? The Gemara rejects this: Rav Yosef could have said to you: I am speaking even according to the opinion of the Rabbis, as in my opinion, testimony enabling a woman to remarry is different in that the Rabbis ruled more leniently and they even accept testimony from a completely wicked individual. However, Rav Menashe, who renders unfit one who is wicked by Torah law from testimony enabling a woman to remarry, spoke in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yehuda, who differentiates even in such testimony between one who is considered wicked according to Torah law and one who is considered wicked by rabbinic law.

הרגתיו כו' הרגנוהו תנשא כו': מאי שנא הרגתיו ומאי שנא הרגנוהו אמר רב יהודה באומר אני הייתי עם הורגיו

In the mishna it is taught that the court accepts testimony from one who said: I killed him, or: We killed him, while Rabbi Yehuda differentiates between one who said: I killed him, whose testimony is not accepted, and one who said: We killed him, whose testimony is accepted and the woman may be married to others. The Gemara asks: What is different between: I killed him, and: We killed him? Isn’t he a murderer by his own admission as well when he testifies: We killed him? Rav Yehuda said: Do not understand that by saying: We killed him, he included himself among the murderers. Rather, it is referring to a case where he said: I was with his murderers, but he was not an active participant to the murder.

והתניא אמרו לו לרבי יהודה מעשה בלסטים אחד שיצא ליהרג במגיזת קפוטקיא ואמר להם לכו אמרו לה לאשת שמעון בן כהן אני הרגתי את בעלה בכניסתי ללוד ואמרי לה בכניסתו ללוד והשיאו את אשתו אמר להם משם ראיה באומר אני הייתי עם הורגיו

And it is taught in a baraita that this is the basis for Rabbi Yehuda’s distinction: They told Rabbi Yehuda: There was an incident involving an armed bandit [listim] who was taken out to be executed in the passage [megizat] of Cappadocia, and he said to those present: Go and tell the wife of Shimon the Priest that I killed her husband as I entered Lod. And some say that he said: As he entered Lod. And they married off his wife on the basis of this testimony. This implies that the court accepts testimony from the murderer himself. Rabbi Yehuda said to them: You derive proof from there? The case was that he said: I was with his murderers, but not that he himself murdered the woman’s husband.

והא לסטים קתני שנתפס ע"י לסטיות והא יצא ליהרג קתני בי דינא דעובדי כוכבים דלא דייקי וקטלי:

The Gemara challenges: How could Rabbi Yehuda understand the incident in such a way? But it is taught in the baraita that the witness himself was an armed bandit. The Gemara answers: He was captured for a charge of armed banditry. The Gemara asks: But it is taught that he was taken out to be executed, implying that he was found guilty of murder. The Gemara answers: That was a gentile court, and they execute without being precise. One who is among a gang of bandits is executed by a gentile court regardless of whether or not he himself was a murderer. This baraita therefore provides evidence that Rabbi Yehuda admits the testimony of such a witness only if he says: I was with his murderers.

מתני׳ החכם שאסר את האשה בנדר על בעלה הרי זה לא ישאנה מיאנה או שחלצה בפניו ישאנה מפני שהוא ב"ד:

MISHNA: A Sage who refused to release a woman from a vow that rendered the wife forbidden to her husband by that vow, resulting in her being divorced from her husband, may not marry her, so as to avoid suspicion that he rendered her forbidden to her husband in order to marry her himself. However, a judge before whom a woman performed refusal when she was a minor, declaring that she did not desire the husband chosen for her by her family, or before whom she performed ḥalitza, may marry her because he was only one member of the court, thereby alleviating suspicion.

גמ' הא התירה ישאנה במאי עסקינן אילימא בחד חד מי מצי מתיר והאמר (רב אמר) ר' חייא בר אבין אמר רב עמרם תנא התרת נדרים בשלשה

GEMARA: The mishna taught that a Sage who rendered a woman forbidden to her husband may not then marry her. The Gemara deduces from here: This implies that if he rendered her permitted to her husband and she was later widowed or divorced, then he may marry her. The Gemara clarifies this: With what are we dealing? If we say that he was a single judge and not part of a court, can a single judge dissolve vows? But didn’t Rav say that Rabbi Ḥiyya bar Avin said that Rav Amram said: It is taught in a baraita: Dissolution of vows requires a court of three judges?

ואלא בתלתא מי חשידי והתנן מיאנה או שחלצה בפניו ישאנה מפני שהוא בית דין

Rather, could it be a case of three judges rather than one? In such a case, would they be suspect of distorting judgment? But didn’t we learn in the mishna: If she performed refusal or performed ḥalitza before him, he may marry her because he functioned as a member of a court of three? This teaches that there is no suspicion of a judge in a court of three.

לעולם בחד וכדאמר רב חסדא אמר ר' יוחנן ביחיד מומחה הכא נמי ביחיד מומחה:

The Gemara answers: Actually, you should explain that this case is that of a single judge, and it is as Rav Ḥisda said that Rabbi Yoḥanan said: Vows may be dissolved even by a single expert, and a three-member court is not always necessary. Here too, it is referring to a single expert refusing to nullify her vow.

מיאנה או שחלצה וכו': טעמא דב"ד הא בתרי לא

It is taught in the mishna that if a woman performed refusal or performed ḥalitza before a judge, he may still marry her, as he was part of a court. The Gemara deduces from here: The reason is specifically that he functioned on the court as one of three judges. The Gemara deduces: Then, if there were only two judges, he would not be permitted to marry her.

מ"ש מהא דתנן עדים החתומים על שדה מקח ועל גט אשה לא חשו חכמים לדבר זה היא גופה קמשמע לן לאפוקי ממ"ד מיאון בפני שנים קמשמע לן מיאון בג'

If so, in what way is this case different from that which we learned in a baraita: If witnesses signed on the document of sale of a field or on a woman’s bill of divorce, the Sages were not concerned about this matter if one of the witnesses subsequently purchased the field or married the divorcée. Since there are two witnesses, there is no suspicion that they collaborated for the benefit of one of them. The Gemara answers: If there were two judges there would also be no concern; however, this mishna itself comes to teach us that a refusal must be performed before a full court, to exclude the opinion of the one who said that refusal may be performed before two. This teaches us that refusal must be performed before three judges.

איבעיא להו כנס מהו שיוציא רב כהנא אמר כנס מוציא רב אשי אמר כנס אינו מוציא תני להו רב זוטי דבי רב פפי כדברי האומר כנס אינו מוציא

§ A dilemma was raised before the Sages with regard to one who was prohibited from marrying a certain woman: If he nevertheless married her despite the prohibition, what is the halakha with regard to whether he must divorce her? Rav Kahana said: If he married her, he must divorce her. Rav Ashi said: If he married her, he need not divorce her. Rav Zuti from the school of Rav Pappi taught the Sages a baraita in accordance with the statement of the one who said that if he married her, he need not divorce her.

אמרו ליה רבנן לרב אשי גמרא או סברא אמר להו מתני׳ היא הנטען משפחה ונשתחררה מעובדת כוכבים ונתגיירה הרי זה לא יכנוס ואם כנס אין מוציא אלמא

The Rabbis said to Rav Ashi: With regard to the halakha that you said, that if he married her he need not divorce her, was it based upon tradition or is it your own conclusion? He said to them: It is the mishna. I reached this conclusion from the wording of the mishna, which taught that one suspected by others of engaging in sexual relations with a Canaanite maidservant and she was subsequently set free, or with a gentile woman and she subsequently converted may not marry that woman. But if he did marry her, they, the judges of the court, do not remove her from him. Apparently,