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Daf Yomi

March 1, 2024 | 讻状讗 讘讗讚专 讗壮 转砖驻状讚

  • Masechet Bava Metzia is sponsored by Rabbi Art Gould in memory of his beloved bride of 50 years, Carol Joy Robinson, Karina Gola bat Huddah v鈥橸ehuda Tzvi.

    专讘讜转 讘谞讜转 注砖讜 讞讬诇 讜讗转 注诇讬转 注诇志讻诇谞讛

  • This month's learning is sponsored by Shifra Tyberg and Rephael Wenger in loving memory of Zvi ben Yisrael Yitzhak Tyberg on his yahrzeit, and in honor of their daughter Ayelet's upcoming marriage to Ori Kinberg.

  • This month's learning is sponsored by Rabbi Hayim Herring with pride and love, in honor of his spouse, Terri Krivosha, who received this year's Sidney Barrows Lifetime Commitment Award from the Mpls. And St. Paul Federations in recognition of her distinguished contribution to the Twin Cities Legal and Jewish Communities.聽

Bava Metzia 2

Bava Metzia bookmark

Masechet Bava Metzia is sponsored by Rabbi Art Gould in memory of his beloved bride of fifty years, Carol Joy Robinson, Karina Gola bat Huddah v鈥橸ehuda Tzvi. “专讘讜转 讘谞讜转 注砖讜 讞讬诇 讜讗转 注诇讬转 注诇志讻诇谞讛”

Today’s daf is sponsored by Heather Stone in loving memory of her father, Bob Stone, Yehuda Leib ben Naphtali Halevy on his 2nd yahrzeit. “He taught me Hebrew and how to daven. He loved Jewish learning and was proud of his Jewish faith. As I learn the daf each day I know I am carrying a tradition that would make my dad proud.”

If two people are holding onto a tallit – each one claiming they found it or each claiming it belongs entirely to them, the Mishna rules that each one swears that no less than half is theirs and they split it (or sell it and split the value). If one claims it is entirely theirs and the other claims that half is theirs, one takes an oath that no less than three-quarters belongs to him/her and the other takes an oath on one-quarter and the item is split accordingly. The law would be the same if two people were arguing about an animal and both were riding on it or one was riding and one was leading it. The Gemara suggests two different explanations as to why the first case in the Mishna had each person making two different statements – “I found it” and “It is completely mine.鈥 Are these considered one case and the extra statement is meant to teach something additional or are there two different cases? If it is one case, the extra wording of “I found it” is meant to teach that the finder does not acquire rights to an object if one sees a lost item but does not lift it. After rejecting this reading of the Mishna, Rav Papa explains that the Mishna refers to two different cases 鈥 the first is a lost item and the second is a purchased item that each side claims the seller sold to him/her. In the case of a sale, the seller only agreed to sell it to one of the two but both paid for it. The Gemara compares our ruling in the Mishna to other tannatic opinions brought in similar cases of disputed money where different methods are employed to resolve the dispute. The Gemara first suggests that our Mishna does not hold by those tannaim, but then concludes that the Mishna may hold by those opinions as the cases have significant differences that could explain why in one case the ruling would be different than in another.

砖谞讬诐 讗讜讞讝讬谉 讘讟诇讬转 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讝讛 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪讞爪讬讛 讜讝讛 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪讞爪讬讛 讜讬讞诇讜拽讜


The early commentaries ask why this chapter, which discusses details of the halakhot of found items, precedes the second chapter, which discusses the fundamental halakhot of found items.
Tosafot explain that as tractate Bava Metzia follows tractate Bava Kamma, the halakhot of found items are elucidated in this chapter as a continuation of the topics discussed in the last chapter of Bava Kamma, which discussed the division of items between litigants by means of an oath, which is also the ruling in the mishna here (see Shita Mekubbetzet). The Rosh explains that because there is a suspicion of theft in this case, these matters are juxtaposed with the halakhot of theft, which are described at length in Bava Kamma.

MISHNA: If two people came to court holding a garment, and this one, the first litigant, says: I found it, and that one, the second litigant, says: I found it; this one says: All of it is mine, and that one says: All of it is mine; how does the court adjudicate this case? This one takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than half of it, and that one takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than half of it, and they divide it.


讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讞爪讬讛 砖诇讬 讛讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪砖诇砖讛 讞诇拽讬诐 讜讛讗讜诪专 讞爪讬讛 砖诇讬 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪专讘讬注 讝讛 谞讜讟诇 砖诇砖讛 讞诇拽讬诐 讜讝讛 谞讜讟诇 专讘讬注


If this one says: All of it is mine, and that one says: Half of it is mine, since they both agree that half of the cloak belongs to one of them, the conflict between them is only about the other half. Therefore, the one who says: All of it is mine, takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than three parts, i.e., three-fourths, of it, and the one who says: Half of it is mine, takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than one-quarter of it. This one takes three parts, and that one takes one-quarter.


讛讬讜 砖谞讬诐 专讜讻讘讬谉 注诇 讙讘讬 讘讛诪讛 讗讜 砖讛讬讛 讗讞讚 专讜讻讘 讜讗讞讚 诪谞讛讬讙 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讝讛 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪讞爪讬讛 讜讝讛 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪讞爪讬讛 讜讬讞诇讜拽讜


If two people were sitting in a riding position on the back of an animal, e.g., a donkey or camel, or one was sitting in a riding position on the animal and one was leading it by its halter, and this one says: All of it is mine, and that one says: All of it is mine, how does the court adjudicate this case? This one takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than half of it, and that one takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than half of it, and they divide it.


讘讝诪谉 砖讛诐 诪讜讚讬诐 讗讜 砖讬砖 诇讛谉 注讚讬诐 讞讜诇拽讬谉 讘诇讗 砖讘讜注讛


When they admit to the validity of each other鈥檚 claims or when they each have witnesses attesting to their claims, they divide the disputed item without taking an oath, as an oath is administered only in a case where the parties have no other way to prove their claims.


讙诪壮 诇诪讛 诇讬 诇诪转谞讗 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 诇讬转谞讬 讞讚讗 讞讚讗 拽转谞讬 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬


GEMARA: The Gemara asks: Why do I need the tanna to teach two separate claims made by each party? Why does the tanna say both: This one says: I found it, and that one says: I found it; and in addition: This one says: All of it is mine, and that one says: All of it is mine? Let the tanna teach one case. The Gemara answers: The correct understanding of the mishna is that it teaches one claim of each party, as their claims were as follows: This one says: I found it and all of it is mine, and that one says: I found it and all of it is mine.


讜诇讬转谞讬 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讗谞讗 讬讚注谞讗 讚讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讗讬 转谞讗 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讛讜讛 讗诪讬谞讗 诪讗讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 专讗讬转讬讛 讗祝 注诇 讙讘 讚诇讗 讗转讗讬 诇讬讚讬讛 讘专讗讬讛 讘注诇诪讗 拽谞讬 转谞讗 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讚讘专讗讬讛 诇讗 拽谞讬


The Gemara asks: But let the tanna teach a case where each one merely claims: I found it, and I would know that the intention of each litigant is to claim: All of it is mine. The Gemara answers: If the tanna would teach only that each one claimed: I found it, I would say that what is the meaning of the claim: I found it? It means: I saw it. In other words, he is claiming that he saw the item first, and he believes that even though it did not reach his possession, he acquired it through mere sight. Since it would have been possible to think that this is an effective claim, the tanna teaches that the litigant states definitively: All of it is mine, to teach that one does not acquire a lost item through sight alone.


讜诪讬 诪爪讬转 讗诪专转 诪讗讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 专讗讬转讬讛 讜讛讗 讗诪专 专讘谞讗讬 讜诪爪讗转讛 讚讗转讗讬 诇讬讚讬讛 诪砖诪注


The Gemara challenges this explanation: But how can you say that what the term: I found it, means is actually: I saw it? But didn鈥檛 Rabbenai say in interpreting the verse: 鈥淎nd so shall you do with every lost item of your brother鈥檚, which he has lost, and you have found it鈥 (Deuteronomy 22:3), that 鈥渁nd you have found it鈥 indicates that it came into his possession? The term find in the Torah refers exclusively to a situation where the item is in the possession of the finder.


讗讬谉 讜诪爪讗转讛 讚拽专讗 讚讗转讗 诇讬讚讬讛 诪砖诪注 讜诪讬讛讜 转谞讗 诇讬砖谞讗 讚注诇诪讗 谞拽讟 讜诪讚讞讝讬 诇讬讛 讗诪专 讗谞讗 讗砖讻讞讬转 讜讗祝 注诇 讙讘 讚诇讗 讗转讗讬 诇讬讚讬讛 讘专讗讬讛 讘注诇诪讗 拽谞讬 转谞讬 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讚讘专讗讬讛 讘注诇诪讗 诇讗 拽谞讬 诇讛


The Gemara answers: Indeed, the phrase 鈥渁nd you have found it鈥 in the verse certainly indicates that it came into his possession. But one might say that the tanna employed colloquial language in the mishna. And in colloquial language, once a person sees an item, he says: I found it, even if it did not yet come into his possession, because he believes that he acquired the item through mere sight. Since it would have been possible to understand the claim of: I found it, in this manner, the tanna teaches that the litigant states definitively: All of it is mine, to teach that one does not acquire a lost item through sight alone.


讜诇讬转谞讬 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜诇讗 讘注讬 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讗讬 转谞讬 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讛讜讛 讗诪讬谞讗 讘注诇诪讗 讚拽转谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讘专讗讬讛 讘注诇诪讗 拽谞讬 转谞讗 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讛讚专 转谞讗 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讚诪诪砖谞讛 讬转讬专讛 讗砖诪注讬谞谉 讚专讗讬讛 诇讗 拽谞讬


The Gemara asks: But if that was the objective of the tanna, let him teach that each party need only state: All of it is mine, and the litigant would not need to say: I found it. The Gemara answers: If the tanna had taught that it is sufficient for each party to claim only: All of it is mine, I would say that in general, when the tanna teaches that one claims: I found it, he means that the finder acquires the item through mere sight. Therefore, he taught that the litigants claimed: I found it, and he then taught that the litigants claimed: All of it is mine, to teach that only when the litigants each make both of these claims does the court divide the item, as from the superfluous expression in the mishna he teaches us that one does not acquire the item through sight alone.


讜诪讬 诪爪讬转 讗诪专转 讞讚讗 拽转谞讬 讜讛讗 讝讛 讜讝讛 拽转谞讬 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讻讜壮


After explaining the viability of this interpretation, the Gemara asks: But how can you say that the mishna is teaching one claim of each party? But doesn鈥檛 the mishna teach: This one says, and again: This one says? In other words, the mishna writes: This one says: I found it, and that one says: I found it; and it states additionally: This one says: All of it is mine, and that one says: All of it is mine. From the fact that the tanna introduced each of the claims with the phrase: This one says, it is apparent that they are two separate claims, not one compound claim.


讗诪专 专讘 驻驻讗 讜讗讬转讬诪讗 专讘 砖讬诪讬 讘专 讗砖讬 讜讗诪专讬 诇讛 讻讚讬 专讬砖讗 讘诪爪讬讗讛 讜住讬驻讗 讘诪拽讞 讜诪诪讻专


Rav Pappa said, and some say it was said by Rav Shimi bar Ashi, and some say it was an unattributed [kedi] statement: The first clause, where each party says: I found it, is referring to a case of a found item, where two people found one item. And the latter clause, where each party says: All of it is mine, is referring to a case of buying and selling, where each party claims that he is the one who bought the item from its seller.


讜爪专讬讻讗


And it is necessary for the mishna to teach its ruling both with regard to a found item and with regard to a purchase.


讚讗讬 转谞讗 诪爪讬讗讛 讛讜讛 讗诪讬谞讗 诪爪讬讗讛 讛讜讗 讚专诪讜 专讘谞谉 砖讘讜注讛 注诇讬讛 诪砖讜诐 讚诪讜专讬 讜讗诪专 讞讘专讗讬 诇讗讜 诪讬讚讬 讞住专 讘讛 讗讬讝诇 讗转驻讬住 讜讗转驻诇讬讙 讘讛讚讬讛 讗讘诇 诪拽讞 讜诪诪讻专 讚诇讬讻讗 诇诪讬诪专 讛讻讬 讗讬诪讗 诇讗


As had the tanna taught the case of a found item alone, I would say that it is only in the case of a found item that the Sages imposed an oath upon him, as in that case one can rationalize his actions and say: The other party, the one who in fact found the item, is not losing anything by not keeping all of it, as it was not his to begin with. I will go seize it from him and divide it with him. But in the case of buying and selling, where that cannot be said, say that the Sages did not impose an oath upon him.


讜讗讬 转谞讗 诪拽讞 讜诪诪讻专 讛讜讗 讚专诪讜 专讘谞谉 砖讘讜注讛 注诇讬讛 诪砖讜诐 讚诪讜专讬 讜讗诪专 讞讘专讗讬 讚诪讬 拽讗 讬讛讬讘 讜讗谞讗 讚诪讬 拽讗 讬讛讬讘谞讗 讛砖转讗 讚爪专讬讻讗 诇讚讬讚讬 讗砖拽诇讬讛 讗谞讗 讜讞讘专讗讬 诇讬讝讬诇 诇讟专讞 诇讬讝讘谉 讗讘诇 诪爪讬讗讛 讚诇讬讻讗 诇诪讬诪专 讛讻讬 讗讬诪讗 诇讗 爪专讬讻讗


And had the tanna taught the case of buying and selling alone, one might say that it is specifically in this case that the Sages imposed an oath upon him, because he could rationalize his actions, saying to himself: The other party gave money to the seller and I gave money to the seller; now that I need it for myself, I will take it and let the other one go to the trouble to buy another item like the first item. But in the case of a found item, where that cannot be said, say that the Sages did not suspect that he seized an item that did not belong to him, and therefore there is no need to impose an oath upon him. Therefore, both cases are necessary.


诪拽讞 讜诪诪讻专 讜诇讞讝讬 讝讜讝讬 诪诪讗谉 谞拽讟 诇讗 爪专讬讻讗 讚谞拽讟 诪转专讜讬讬讛讜 诪讞讚 诪讚注转讬讛 讜诪讞讚 讘注诇 讻专讞讬讛 讜诇讗 讬讚注谞讗 诪讬 讛讜讗 诪讚注转讬讛 讜诪讬 讛讜讗 讘注诇 讻专讞讬讛


The Gemara asks: How can the mishna be referring to a case of buying and selling? But let us see from whom the seller took the money. Obviously, the one who gave him the money is the one who bought it. The Gemara answers: No, it is necessary in a case where he took money from both of them. He accepted the money willingly from the one to whom he wanted to sell the item, and he received the money against his will from the one to whom he did not want to sell the item, and I do not know who is the one from whom he took it willingly, and who is the one from whom he received it against his will. Consequently, the matter is clarified by means of an oath.


诇讬诪讗 诪转谞讬转讬谉 讚诇讗 讻讘谉 谞谞住 讚讗讬 讘谉 谞谞住 讛讗诪专


搂 The Gemara suggests: Let us say that the mishna is not in accordance with the opinion of ben Nannas, as, if it were in accordance with the opinion of ben Nannas, doesn鈥檛 he say that an oath is not administered to two parties in court when one of them is certainly lying?


讻讬爪讚 讗诇讜 讜讗诇讜 讘讗讬谉 诇讬讚讬 砖讘讜注转 砖讜讗


As it is stated in a mishna (Shevuot 45a): With regard to a case where a man said to his laborer: Go to the storekeeper and he will give you food in lieu of your salary, and sometime later the laborer claimed that the storekeeper did not give him anything while the storekeeper claimed that he did, the Rabbis say: The storekeeper and the laborer must each take an oath to support their claims, and the employer must pay them both. Ben Nannas says in response: How can you allow these people, i.e., the laborer, and those people, i.e., the storekeeper, to come to take an oath in vain? Since one of them is definitely lying, the Sages would not impose the taking of an oath that by definition must be false. Similarly, in the case of the mishna here, since the found item is divided between the parties in any case, according to the opinion of ben Nannas they should receive their portions without taking an oath.


讗驻讬诇讜 转讬诪讗 讘谉 谞谞住 讛转诐 讜讚讗讬 讗讬讻讗 砖讘讜注转 砖讜讗 讛讻讗 讗讬讻讗 诇诪讬诪专 讚诇讬讻讗 砖讘讜注转 砖讜讗 讗讬诪讜专 讚转专讜讬讬讛讜 讘讛讚讬 讛讚讚讬 讗讙讘讛讜讛


The Gemara rejects this suggestion: It is even possible for you to say that the mishna is in accordance with the opinion of ben Nannas. There, in the case of the laborer and the storekeeper, an oath is certainly taken in vain, as it is clear that one of them is lying. Here, there is room to say that there is no oath taken in vain. Say that they are both taking an oath truthfully, as they lifted the item together, and therefore each of them owns half of it. In this case, ben Nannas would agree that they both take an oath.


诇讬诪讗 诪转谞讬转讬谉 讚诇讗 讻住讜诪讻讜住 讚讗讬 讻住讜诪讻讜住 讛讗诪专 诪诪讜谉 讛诪讜讟诇 讘住驻拽 讞讜诇拽讬谉 讘诇讗 砖讘讜注讛


The Gemara suggests further: Let us say that the mishna is not in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos, as, if it were in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos, doesn鈥檛 he say the following principle: In a case of property of uncertain ownership, the parties divide it without taking an oath.


讜讗诇讗 诪讗讬 专讘谞谉 讛讗 讗诪专讬 讛诪讜爪讬讗 诪讞讘专讜 注诇讬讜 讛专讗讬讛


The Gemara rejects this suggestion: Rather, what opinion does the mishna follow? Does the mishna follow the opinion of the Rabbis, who disagree with Sumakhos? Don鈥檛 they say that in a case of property of uncertain ownership the burden of proof rests upon the claimant? In the case of the mishna neither side offers proof.


讛讗讬 诪讗讬 讗讬 讗诪专转 讘砖诇诪讗 专讘谞谉 讛转诐 讚诇讗 转驻住讬 转专讜讬讬讛讜 讗诪专讜 专讘谞谉 讛诪讜爪讬讗 诪讞讘讬专讜 注诇讬讜 讛专讗讬讛 讛讻讗 讚转专讜讬讬讛讜 转驻住讬 [驻诇讙讬] 诇讛 讘砖讘讜注讛


The Gemara answers: What is this comparison? Granted, if you say that the mishna is in accordance with the opinion of the Rabbis, there is room to distinguish between two cases: There, in the case of property of uncertain ownership, where both parties are not grasping the property, the Rabbis say that the burden of proof rests upon the claimant since the one with possession of the property ostensibly has the right to that property. Here, in the case of the mishna, where both are grasping the property and neither has exclusive possession of the item, they divide it with the proviso that they take an oath.


讗诇讗 讗讬 讗诪专转 住讜诪讻讜住 讛砖转讗 讜诪讛 讛转诐 讚诇讗 转驻住讬 转专讜讬讬讛讜 讞讜诇拽讬谉 讘诇讗 砖讘讜注讛 讛讻讗 讚转专讜讬讬讛讜 转驻住讬 诇讛 诇讗 讻诇 砖讻谉


The Gemara continues to state its proof that the mishna is not in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos: But if you say that the mishna is in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos, how do you resolve the following contradiction: Now, if there, in a case where they are not both grasping the property, they nevertheless divide it without taking an oath, here, where they are both grasping the property, is it not all the more so that they should divide it without taking an oath?


讗驻讬诇讜 转讬诪讗 住讜诪讻讜住 讻讬 讗诪专 住讜诪讻讜住 砖诪讗 讜砖诪讗 讗讘诇 讘专讬 讜讘专讬 诇讗 讗诪专


The Gemara rejects this suggestion: You may even say that the mishna is in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos. When Sumakhos states that in a case of property of uncertain ownership, the parties divide it without taking an oath, that is in the case of an uncertain claim and an uncertain claim, i.e., when the circumstances are such that neither party can state definitively that he is entitled to the property. But in a case of a certain claim and a certain claim, where each party states definitively that he is entitled to the property, Sumakhos does not say that they divide the property without taking an oath.


讜诇专讘讛 讘专 专讘 讛讜谞讗 讚讗诪专 讗诪专 住讜诪讻讜住 讗驻讬诇讜 讘专讬 讜讘专讬 诪讗讬 讗讬讻讗 诇诪讬诪专


The Gemara asks: And according to the opinion of Rabba bar Rav Huna, who said that Sumakhos says that even in a case of a certain claim and a certain claim the parties divide the property without an oath, what is there to say to establish the mishna in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos?


讗驻讬诇讜 转讬诪讗 住讜诪讻讜住 讻讬 讗诪专 住讜诪讻讜住 讛讬讻讗 讚讗讬讻讗 讚专专讗 讚诪诪讜谞讗 讗讘诇 讛讬讻讗 讚诇讬讻讗 讚专专讗 讚诪诪讜谞讗 诇讗


The Gemara answers: You may even say that the mishna is in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos. When Sumakhos says that property of uncertain ownership is divided, he is referring to a case where the litigants have a financial association with the item independent of their claims to it. But where the litigants do not have a financial association with the item beyond their claims, they do not divide it without taking an oath.


讜诇讗讜 拽诇 讜讞讜诪专 讛讜讗 讜诪讛 讛转诐 讚讗讬讻讗 讚专专讗 讚诪诪讜谞讗 诇诪专 讜讗讬讻讗 讚专专讗 讚诪诪讜谞讗 诇诪专


The Gemara asks: But is it not an a fortiori inference? If there, in a case where this Master has a financial association with the item, and that Master has a financial association with the item,


  • Masechet Bava Metzia is sponsored by Rabbi Art Gould in memory of his beloved bride of 50 years, Carol Joy Robinson, Karina Gola bat Huddah v鈥橸ehuda Tzvi.

    专讘讜转 讘谞讜转 注砖讜 讞讬诇 讜讗转 注诇讬转 注诇志讻诇谞讛

  • This month's learning is sponsored by Shifra Tyberg and Rephael Wenger in loving memory of Zvi ben Yisrael Yitzhak Tyberg on his yahrzeit, and in honor of their daughter Ayelet's upcoming marriage to Ori Kinberg.

  • This month's learning is sponsored by Rabbi Hayim Herring with pride and love, in honor of his spouse, Terri Krivosha, who received this year's Sidney Barrows Lifetime Commitment Award from the Mpls. And St. Paul Federations in recognition of her distinguished contribution to the Twin Cities Legal and Jewish Communities.聽

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Bava Metzia 2

砖谞讬诐 讗讜讞讝讬谉 讘讟诇讬转 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讝讛 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪讞爪讬讛 讜讝讛 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪讞爪讬讛 讜讬讞诇讜拽讜


The early commentaries ask why this chapter, which discusses details of the halakhot of found items, precedes the second chapter, which discusses the fundamental halakhot of found items.
Tosafot explain that as tractate Bava Metzia follows tractate Bava Kamma, the halakhot of found items are elucidated in this chapter as a continuation of the topics discussed in the last chapter of Bava Kamma, which discussed the division of items between litigants by means of an oath, which is also the ruling in the mishna here (see Shita Mekubbetzet). The Rosh explains that because there is a suspicion of theft in this case, these matters are juxtaposed with the halakhot of theft, which are described at length in Bava Kamma.

MISHNA: If two people came to court holding a garment, and this one, the first litigant, says: I found it, and that one, the second litigant, says: I found it; this one says: All of it is mine, and that one says: All of it is mine; how does the court adjudicate this case? This one takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than half of it, and that one takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than half of it, and they divide it.


讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讞爪讬讛 砖诇讬 讛讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪砖诇砖讛 讞诇拽讬诐 讜讛讗讜诪专 讞爪讬讛 砖诇讬 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪专讘讬注 讝讛 谞讜讟诇 砖诇砖讛 讞诇拽讬诐 讜讝讛 谞讜讟诇 专讘讬注


If this one says: All of it is mine, and that one says: Half of it is mine, since they both agree that half of the cloak belongs to one of them, the conflict between them is only about the other half. Therefore, the one who says: All of it is mine, takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than three parts, i.e., three-fourths, of it, and the one who says: Half of it is mine, takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than one-quarter of it. This one takes three parts, and that one takes one-quarter.


讛讬讜 砖谞讬诐 专讜讻讘讬谉 注诇 讙讘讬 讘讛诪讛 讗讜 砖讛讬讛 讗讞讚 专讜讻讘 讜讗讞讚 诪谞讛讬讙 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讝讛 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪讞爪讬讛 讜讝讛 讬砖讘注 砖讗讬谉 诇讜 讘讛 驻讞讜转 诪讞爪讬讛 讜讬讞诇讜拽讜


If two people were sitting in a riding position on the back of an animal, e.g., a donkey or camel, or one was sitting in a riding position on the animal and one was leading it by its halter, and this one says: All of it is mine, and that one says: All of it is mine, how does the court adjudicate this case? This one takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than half of it, and that one takes an oath that he does not have ownership of less than half of it, and they divide it.


讘讝诪谉 砖讛诐 诪讜讚讬诐 讗讜 砖讬砖 诇讛谉 注讚讬诐 讞讜诇拽讬谉 讘诇讗 砖讘讜注讛


When they admit to the validity of each other鈥檚 claims or when they each have witnesses attesting to their claims, they divide the disputed item without taking an oath, as an oath is administered only in a case where the parties have no other way to prove their claims.


讙诪壮 诇诪讛 诇讬 诇诪转谞讗 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 诇讬转谞讬 讞讚讗 讞讚讗 拽转谞讬 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬


GEMARA: The Gemara asks: Why do I need the tanna to teach two separate claims made by each party? Why does the tanna say both: This one says: I found it, and that one says: I found it; and in addition: This one says: All of it is mine, and that one says: All of it is mine? Let the tanna teach one case. The Gemara answers: The correct understanding of the mishna is that it teaches one claim of each party, as their claims were as follows: This one says: I found it and all of it is mine, and that one says: I found it and all of it is mine.


讜诇讬转谞讬 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讗谞讗 讬讚注谞讗 讚讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讗讬 转谞讗 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讛讜讛 讗诪讬谞讗 诪讗讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 专讗讬转讬讛 讗祝 注诇 讙讘 讚诇讗 讗转讗讬 诇讬讚讬讛 讘专讗讬讛 讘注诇诪讗 拽谞讬 转谞讗 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讚讘专讗讬讛 诇讗 拽谞讬


The Gemara asks: But let the tanna teach a case where each one merely claims: I found it, and I would know that the intention of each litigant is to claim: All of it is mine. The Gemara answers: If the tanna would teach only that each one claimed: I found it, I would say that what is the meaning of the claim: I found it? It means: I saw it. In other words, he is claiming that he saw the item first, and he believes that even though it did not reach his possession, he acquired it through mere sight. Since it would have been possible to think that this is an effective claim, the tanna teaches that the litigant states definitively: All of it is mine, to teach that one does not acquire a lost item through sight alone.


讜诪讬 诪爪讬转 讗诪专转 诪讗讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 专讗讬转讬讛 讜讛讗 讗诪专 专讘谞讗讬 讜诪爪讗转讛 讚讗转讗讬 诇讬讚讬讛 诪砖诪注


The Gemara challenges this explanation: But how can you say that what the term: I found it, means is actually: I saw it? But didn鈥檛 Rabbenai say in interpreting the verse: 鈥淎nd so shall you do with every lost item of your brother鈥檚, which he has lost, and you have found it鈥 (Deuteronomy 22:3), that 鈥渁nd you have found it鈥 indicates that it came into his possession? The term find in the Torah refers exclusively to a situation where the item is in the possession of the finder.


讗讬谉 讜诪爪讗转讛 讚拽专讗 讚讗转讗 诇讬讚讬讛 诪砖诪注 讜诪讬讛讜 转谞讗 诇讬砖谞讗 讚注诇诪讗 谞拽讟 讜诪讚讞讝讬 诇讬讛 讗诪专 讗谞讗 讗砖讻讞讬转 讜讗祝 注诇 讙讘 讚诇讗 讗转讗讬 诇讬讚讬讛 讘专讗讬讛 讘注诇诪讗 拽谞讬 转谞讬 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讚讘专讗讬讛 讘注诇诪讗 诇讗 拽谞讬 诇讛


The Gemara answers: Indeed, the phrase 鈥渁nd you have found it鈥 in the verse certainly indicates that it came into his possession. But one might say that the tanna employed colloquial language in the mishna. And in colloquial language, once a person sees an item, he says: I found it, even if it did not yet come into his possession, because he believes that he acquired the item through mere sight. Since it would have been possible to understand the claim of: I found it, in this manner, the tanna teaches that the litigant states definitively: All of it is mine, to teach that one does not acquire a lost item through sight alone.


讜诇讬转谞讬 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜诇讗 讘注讬 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讗讬 转谞讬 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讛讜讛 讗诪讬谞讗 讘注诇诪讗 讚拽转谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讘专讗讬讛 讘注诇诪讗 拽谞讬 转谞讗 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讛讚专 转谞讗 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讚诪诪砖谞讛 讬转讬专讛 讗砖诪注讬谞谉 讚专讗讬讛 诇讗 拽谞讬


The Gemara asks: But if that was the objective of the tanna, let him teach that each party need only state: All of it is mine, and the litigant would not need to say: I found it. The Gemara answers: If the tanna had taught that it is sufficient for each party to claim only: All of it is mine, I would say that in general, when the tanna teaches that one claims: I found it, he means that the finder acquires the item through mere sight. Therefore, he taught that the litigants claimed: I found it, and he then taught that the litigants claimed: All of it is mine, to teach that only when the litigants each make both of these claims does the court divide the item, as from the superfluous expression in the mishna he teaches us that one does not acquire the item through sight alone.


讜诪讬 诪爪讬转 讗诪专转 讞讚讗 拽转谞讬 讜讛讗 讝讛 讜讝讛 拽转谞讬 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讜讝讛 讗讜诪专 讗谞讬 诪爪讗转讬讛 讝讛 讗讜诪专 讻讜诇讛 砖诇讬 讜讻讜壮


After explaining the viability of this interpretation, the Gemara asks: But how can you say that the mishna is teaching one claim of each party? But doesn鈥檛 the mishna teach: This one says, and again: This one says? In other words, the mishna writes: This one says: I found it, and that one says: I found it; and it states additionally: This one says: All of it is mine, and that one says: All of it is mine. From the fact that the tanna introduced each of the claims with the phrase: This one says, it is apparent that they are two separate claims, not one compound claim.


讗诪专 专讘 驻驻讗 讜讗讬转讬诪讗 专讘 砖讬诪讬 讘专 讗砖讬 讜讗诪专讬 诇讛 讻讚讬 专讬砖讗 讘诪爪讬讗讛 讜住讬驻讗 讘诪拽讞 讜诪诪讻专


Rav Pappa said, and some say it was said by Rav Shimi bar Ashi, and some say it was an unattributed [kedi] statement: The first clause, where each party says: I found it, is referring to a case of a found item, where two people found one item. And the latter clause, where each party says: All of it is mine, is referring to a case of buying and selling, where each party claims that he is the one who bought the item from its seller.


讜爪专讬讻讗


And it is necessary for the mishna to teach its ruling both with regard to a found item and with regard to a purchase.


讚讗讬 转谞讗 诪爪讬讗讛 讛讜讛 讗诪讬谞讗 诪爪讬讗讛 讛讜讗 讚专诪讜 专讘谞谉 砖讘讜注讛 注诇讬讛 诪砖讜诐 讚诪讜专讬 讜讗诪专 讞讘专讗讬 诇讗讜 诪讬讚讬 讞住专 讘讛 讗讬讝诇 讗转驻讬住 讜讗转驻诇讬讙 讘讛讚讬讛 讗讘诇 诪拽讞 讜诪诪讻专 讚诇讬讻讗 诇诪讬诪专 讛讻讬 讗讬诪讗 诇讗


As had the tanna taught the case of a found item alone, I would say that it is only in the case of a found item that the Sages imposed an oath upon him, as in that case one can rationalize his actions and say: The other party, the one who in fact found the item, is not losing anything by not keeping all of it, as it was not his to begin with. I will go seize it from him and divide it with him. But in the case of buying and selling, where that cannot be said, say that the Sages did not impose an oath upon him.


讜讗讬 转谞讗 诪拽讞 讜诪诪讻专 讛讜讗 讚专诪讜 专讘谞谉 砖讘讜注讛 注诇讬讛 诪砖讜诐 讚诪讜专讬 讜讗诪专 讞讘专讗讬 讚诪讬 拽讗 讬讛讬讘 讜讗谞讗 讚诪讬 拽讗 讬讛讬讘谞讗 讛砖转讗 讚爪专讬讻讗 诇讚讬讚讬 讗砖拽诇讬讛 讗谞讗 讜讞讘专讗讬 诇讬讝讬诇 诇讟专讞 诇讬讝讘谉 讗讘诇 诪爪讬讗讛 讚诇讬讻讗 诇诪讬诪专 讛讻讬 讗讬诪讗 诇讗 爪专讬讻讗


And had the tanna taught the case of buying and selling alone, one might say that it is specifically in this case that the Sages imposed an oath upon him, because he could rationalize his actions, saying to himself: The other party gave money to the seller and I gave money to the seller; now that I need it for myself, I will take it and let the other one go to the trouble to buy another item like the first item. But in the case of a found item, where that cannot be said, say that the Sages did not suspect that he seized an item that did not belong to him, and therefore there is no need to impose an oath upon him. Therefore, both cases are necessary.


诪拽讞 讜诪诪讻专 讜诇讞讝讬 讝讜讝讬 诪诪讗谉 谞拽讟 诇讗 爪专讬讻讗 讚谞拽讟 诪转专讜讬讬讛讜 诪讞讚 诪讚注转讬讛 讜诪讞讚 讘注诇 讻专讞讬讛 讜诇讗 讬讚注谞讗 诪讬 讛讜讗 诪讚注转讬讛 讜诪讬 讛讜讗 讘注诇 讻专讞讬讛


The Gemara asks: How can the mishna be referring to a case of buying and selling? But let us see from whom the seller took the money. Obviously, the one who gave him the money is the one who bought it. The Gemara answers: No, it is necessary in a case where he took money from both of them. He accepted the money willingly from the one to whom he wanted to sell the item, and he received the money against his will from the one to whom he did not want to sell the item, and I do not know who is the one from whom he took it willingly, and who is the one from whom he received it against his will. Consequently, the matter is clarified by means of an oath.


诇讬诪讗 诪转谞讬转讬谉 讚诇讗 讻讘谉 谞谞住 讚讗讬 讘谉 谞谞住 讛讗诪专


搂 The Gemara suggests: Let us say that the mishna is not in accordance with the opinion of ben Nannas, as, if it were in accordance with the opinion of ben Nannas, doesn鈥檛 he say that an oath is not administered to two parties in court when one of them is certainly lying?


讻讬爪讚 讗诇讜 讜讗诇讜 讘讗讬谉 诇讬讚讬 砖讘讜注转 砖讜讗


As it is stated in a mishna (Shevuot 45a): With regard to a case where a man said to his laborer: Go to the storekeeper and he will give you food in lieu of your salary, and sometime later the laborer claimed that the storekeeper did not give him anything while the storekeeper claimed that he did, the Rabbis say: The storekeeper and the laborer must each take an oath to support their claims, and the employer must pay them both. Ben Nannas says in response: How can you allow these people, i.e., the laborer, and those people, i.e., the storekeeper, to come to take an oath in vain? Since one of them is definitely lying, the Sages would not impose the taking of an oath that by definition must be false. Similarly, in the case of the mishna here, since the found item is divided between the parties in any case, according to the opinion of ben Nannas they should receive their portions without taking an oath.


讗驻讬诇讜 转讬诪讗 讘谉 谞谞住 讛转诐 讜讚讗讬 讗讬讻讗 砖讘讜注转 砖讜讗 讛讻讗 讗讬讻讗 诇诪讬诪专 讚诇讬讻讗 砖讘讜注转 砖讜讗 讗讬诪讜专 讚转专讜讬讬讛讜 讘讛讚讬 讛讚讚讬 讗讙讘讛讜讛


The Gemara rejects this suggestion: It is even possible for you to say that the mishna is in accordance with the opinion of ben Nannas. There, in the case of the laborer and the storekeeper, an oath is certainly taken in vain, as it is clear that one of them is lying. Here, there is room to say that there is no oath taken in vain. Say that they are both taking an oath truthfully, as they lifted the item together, and therefore each of them owns half of it. In this case, ben Nannas would agree that they both take an oath.


诇讬诪讗 诪转谞讬转讬谉 讚诇讗 讻住讜诪讻讜住 讚讗讬 讻住讜诪讻讜住 讛讗诪专 诪诪讜谉 讛诪讜讟诇 讘住驻拽 讞讜诇拽讬谉 讘诇讗 砖讘讜注讛


The Gemara suggests further: Let us say that the mishna is not in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos, as, if it were in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos, doesn鈥檛 he say the following principle: In a case of property of uncertain ownership, the parties divide it without taking an oath.


讜讗诇讗 诪讗讬 专讘谞谉 讛讗 讗诪专讬 讛诪讜爪讬讗 诪讞讘专讜 注诇讬讜 讛专讗讬讛


The Gemara rejects this suggestion: Rather, what opinion does the mishna follow? Does the mishna follow the opinion of the Rabbis, who disagree with Sumakhos? Don鈥檛 they say that in a case of property of uncertain ownership the burden of proof rests upon the claimant? In the case of the mishna neither side offers proof.


讛讗讬 诪讗讬 讗讬 讗诪专转 讘砖诇诪讗 专讘谞谉 讛转诐 讚诇讗 转驻住讬 转专讜讬讬讛讜 讗诪专讜 专讘谞谉 讛诪讜爪讬讗 诪讞讘讬专讜 注诇讬讜 讛专讗讬讛 讛讻讗 讚转专讜讬讬讛讜 转驻住讬 [驻诇讙讬] 诇讛 讘砖讘讜注讛


The Gemara answers: What is this comparison? Granted, if you say that the mishna is in accordance with the opinion of the Rabbis, there is room to distinguish between two cases: There, in the case of property of uncertain ownership, where both parties are not grasping the property, the Rabbis say that the burden of proof rests upon the claimant since the one with possession of the property ostensibly has the right to that property. Here, in the case of the mishna, where both are grasping the property and neither has exclusive possession of the item, they divide it with the proviso that they take an oath.


讗诇讗 讗讬 讗诪专转 住讜诪讻讜住 讛砖转讗 讜诪讛 讛转诐 讚诇讗 转驻住讬 转专讜讬讬讛讜 讞讜诇拽讬谉 讘诇讗 砖讘讜注讛 讛讻讗 讚转专讜讬讬讛讜 转驻住讬 诇讛 诇讗 讻诇 砖讻谉


The Gemara continues to state its proof that the mishna is not in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos: But if you say that the mishna is in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos, how do you resolve the following contradiction: Now, if there, in a case where they are not both grasping the property, they nevertheless divide it without taking an oath, here, where they are both grasping the property, is it not all the more so that they should divide it without taking an oath?


讗驻讬诇讜 转讬诪讗 住讜诪讻讜住 讻讬 讗诪专 住讜诪讻讜住 砖诪讗 讜砖诪讗 讗讘诇 讘专讬 讜讘专讬 诇讗 讗诪专


The Gemara rejects this suggestion: You may even say that the mishna is in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos. When Sumakhos states that in a case of property of uncertain ownership, the parties divide it without taking an oath, that is in the case of an uncertain claim and an uncertain claim, i.e., when the circumstances are such that neither party can state definitively that he is entitled to the property. But in a case of a certain claim and a certain claim, where each party states definitively that he is entitled to the property, Sumakhos does not say that they divide the property without taking an oath.


讜诇专讘讛 讘专 专讘 讛讜谞讗 讚讗诪专 讗诪专 住讜诪讻讜住 讗驻讬诇讜 讘专讬 讜讘专讬 诪讗讬 讗讬讻讗 诇诪讬诪专


The Gemara asks: And according to the opinion of Rabba bar Rav Huna, who said that Sumakhos says that even in a case of a certain claim and a certain claim the parties divide the property without an oath, what is there to say to establish the mishna in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos?


讗驻讬诇讜 转讬诪讗 住讜诪讻讜住 讻讬 讗诪专 住讜诪讻讜住 讛讬讻讗 讚讗讬讻讗 讚专专讗 讚诪诪讜谞讗 讗讘诇 讛讬讻讗 讚诇讬讻讗 讚专专讗 讚诪诪讜谞讗 诇讗


The Gemara answers: You may even say that the mishna is in accordance with the opinion of Sumakhos. When Sumakhos says that property of uncertain ownership is divided, he is referring to a case where the litigants have a financial association with the item independent of their claims to it. But where the litigants do not have a financial association with the item beyond their claims, they do not divide it without taking an oath.


讜诇讗讜 拽诇 讜讞讜诪专 讛讜讗 讜诪讛 讛转诐 讚讗讬讻讗 讚专专讗 讚诪诪讜谞讗 诇诪专 讜讗讬讻讗 讚专专讗 讚诪诪讜谞讗 诇诪专


The Gemara asks: But is it not an a fortiori inference? If there, in a case where this Master has a financial association with the item, and that Master has a financial association with the item,


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