Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility Skip to content

Today's Daf Yomi

August 2, 2017 | ื™ืณ ื‘ืื‘ ืชืฉืขืดื–

  • This month's learning is sponsored by Ron and Shira Krebs to commemorate the 73rd yahrzeit of Shira's grandfather (Yitzchak Leib Ben David Ber HaCohen v'Malka), the 1st yahrzeit of Shira's father (Gershon Pinya Ben Yitzchak Leib HaCohen v'Menucha Sara), and the bar mitzvah of their son Eytan who will be making a siyum on Mishna Shas this month.

  • This month's learning is sponsored for the refuah shleima of Naama bat Yael Esther.

Sanhedrin 17

Eldad and Meidad – how did the story unfold, what did they prophesize about, why weren’t they with the other people who were chosen? ย The mishna explains that one needs a majority of 2 to rule against someone – how does this work out? ย What are the requirements for being a judge? ย A long list of phrases in the gemaraย areย  explained: when the gemara says this… it is referring to the following rabbi or rabbis. ย In order to have a court of 23 set up in a city, there needs to be a minimum number of people. ย Some opinions are brought in the mishna and others are added by the gemara from other tannatic sources. ย The reasons for these different opinions are explained


If the lesson doesn't play, click "Download"

ืขืžืš ืขืžืš ื•ืืช ื‘ื”ื“ื™ื™ื”ื• ื•ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ืขืžืš ืžืฉื•ื ืฉื›ื™ื ื”

with youโ€ (Numbers 11:16), i.e., they will stand โ€œwith you,โ€ and you are to be counted with them, leading to a total number of seventy-one. And Rabbi Yehuda holds that the term โ€œwith youโ€ is mentioned due to the Divine Presence that rested on Moses. According to Rabbi Yehuda, Moses was instructed to remain with the seventy Elders in order for the Divine Presence to rest upon them as well. He was not formally part of their court and therefore the number of Sages on the Great Sanhedrin is seventy.

ื•ืจื‘ื ืŸ ืืžืจ ืงืจื ื•ื ืฉืื• ืืชืš ื‘ืžืฉื ื”ืขื ืืชืš ื•ืืช ื‘ื”ื“ื™ื™ื”ื• ื•ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ืืชืš ื‘ื“ื•ืžื™ืŸ ืœืš

The Gemara asks: And how would the Rabbis respond to this line of reasoning? The Gemara answers: The verse states: โ€œAnd they shall bear the burden of the people with youโ€ (Numbers 11:17), which indicates: โ€œWith you,โ€ and you are to be counted with them. And how would Rabbi Yehuda respond to that? He would explain that the term โ€œwith youโ€ means similar to you, meaning, that the Elders appointed to the court had to be of fit lineage and free of blemish, like Moses.

ื•ืจื‘ื ืŸ ืžื•ื”ืงืœ ืžืขืœื™ืš ื•ื ืฉืื• ืืชืš ื ืคืงื ื•ื™ืœืคื ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ื’ื“ื•ืœื” ืžืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ืงื˜ื ื”

And from where do the Rabbis derive that halakha? They derive it from what was stated with regard to the appointment of the ministers of thousands and the ministers of hundreds: โ€œAnd they shall make it easier for you, and bear the burden with youโ€ (Exodus 18:22), understanding the term โ€œwith youโ€ to mean: Similar to you. And the halakha of the judges of the Great Sanhedrin of seventy is derived from the halakha of the judges of the lesser Sanhedrin, i.e., those ministers, that Moses appointed.

ืชื ื• ืจื‘ื ืŸ ืณื•ื™ืฉืืจื• ืฉื ื™ ืื ืฉื™ื ื‘ืžื—ื ื”ืณ ื™ืฉ ืื•ืžืจื™ื ื‘ืงืœืคื™ ื ืฉืชื™ื™ืจื•

ยง Apropos the appointment of the Elders by Moses, the Gemara discusses additional aspects of that event. There were seventy-two candidates for Elder but only seventy were needed. They were chosen by lots with their names put into a box. The Sages taught: The verse states: โ€œAnd there remained two men in the camp; the name of one was Eldad and the name of the other Medad, and the spirit rested upon them, and they were among those who were written but who did not go out to the tent, and they prophesied in the campโ€ (Numbers 11:26). Where did they remain? Some say this means they, i.e., their names, remained excluded from those selected from the lots in the box.

ืฉื‘ืฉืขื” ืฉืืžืจ ืœื• ื”ืงื“ื•ืฉ ื‘ืจื•ืš ื”ื•ื ืœืžืฉื” ืณืืกืคื” ืœื™ ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ืื™ืฉ ืžื–ืงื ื™ ื™ืฉืจืืœืณ ืืžืจ ืžืฉื” ืณื›ื™ืฆื“ ืืขืฉื” ืื‘ืจื•ืจ ืฉืฉื” ืžื›ืœ ืฉื‘ื˜ ื•ืฉื‘ื˜ ื ืžืฆืื• ืฉื ื™ื ื™ืชื™ืจื™ื ืื‘ืจื•ืจ ื—ืžืฉื” ื—ืžืฉื” ืžื›ืœ ืฉื‘ื˜ ื•ืฉื‘ื˜ ื ืžืฆืื• ืขืฉืจื” ื—ืกืจื™ื ืื‘ืจื•ืจ ืฉืฉื” ืžืฉื‘ื˜ ื–ื” ื•ื—ืžืฉื” ืžืฉื‘ื˜ ื–ื” ื”ืจื™ื ื™ ืžื˜ื™ืœ ืงื ืื” ื‘ื™ืŸ ื”ืฉื‘ื˜ื™ืืณ

The baraita explains: At the time that the Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Moses: โ€œGather for Me seventy men of the Elders of Israelโ€ (Numbers 11:16), Moses said: How shall I do it? If I select six from each and every tribe, there will be a total of seventy-two, which will be two extra. But if I select five from each and every tribe, there will be a total of sixty, lacking ten. And if I select six from this tribe and five from that tribe, I will bring about envy between the tribes, as those with fewer representatives will resent the others.

ืžื” ืขืฉื” ื‘ื™ืจืจ ืฉืฉื” ืฉืฉื” ื•ื”ื‘ื™ื ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ื•ืฉื ื™ื ืคื™ืชืงื™ืŸ ืขืœ ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ื›ืชื‘ ืณื–ืงืŸืณ ื•ืฉื ื™ื ื”ื ื™ื— ื—ืœืง ื‘ืœืœืŸ ื•ื ืชื ืŸ ื‘ืงืœืคื™ ืืžืจ ืœื”ื ืณื‘ื•ืื• ื•ื˜ืœื• ืคื™ืชืงื™ื›ืืณ ื›ืœ ืžื™ ืฉืขืœื” ื‘ื™ื“ื• ืณื–ืงืŸืณ ืืžืจ ืณื›ื‘ืจ ืงื™ื“ืฉืš ืฉืžื™ืืณ ืžื™ ืฉืขืœื” ื‘ื™ื“ื• ื—ืœืง ืืžืจ ืณื”ืžืงื•ื ืœื ื—ืคืฅ ื‘ืš ืื ื™ ืžื” ืืขืฉื” ืœืšืณ

What did he do? He selected six from every tribe and he brought seventy-two slips [pitakin]. On seventy of them he wrote: Elder, and he left two of them blank. He mixed them and placed them in the box. He then said to the seventy-two chosen candidates: Come and draw your slips. Everyone whose hand drew up a slip that said: Elder, he said to him: Heaven has already sanctified you. And everyone whose hand drew up a blank slip, he said to him: The Omnipresent does not desire you; what can I do for you?

ื›ื™ื•ืฆื ื‘ื“ื‘ืจ ืืชื” ืื•ืžืจ ืณื•ืœืงื—ืช ื—ืžืฉืช ื—ืžืฉืช ืฉืงืœื™ื ืœื’ืœื’ืœืชืณ ืืžืจ ืžืฉื” ืณื›ื™ืฆื“ ืืขืฉื” ืœื”ืŸ ืœื™ืฉืจืืœ ืื ืื•ืžืจ ืœื• ืชืŸ ืœื™ ืคื“ื™ื•ื ืš ื•ืฆื ื™ืืžืจ ืœื™ ื›ื‘ืจ ืคื“ืื ื™ ื‘ืŸ ืœื•ื™ืณ

The Gemara comments: You can say something similar to this to explain the verse about the redemption of the firstborn by the Levites: โ€œTake the Levites in place of all of the firstborn of the children of Israelโ€ฆand as for the redemption of the 273 of the firstborn of the children of Israel who are in excess over the number of the Levitesโ€ฆyou shall take five shekels per headโ€ (Numbers 3:45โ€“47). It can be explained that Moses said: How shall I do this for the Jews? If I say to one of the firstborns: Give me money for your redemption and you may leave, as you are among the 273 extra firstborns, he will say to me: A Levite already redeemed me; what is the reason you think that I am among those who were not redeemed?

ืžื” ืขืฉื” ื”ื‘ื™ื ืขืฉืจื™ื ื•ืฉื ื™ื ืืœืคื™ื ืคื™ืชืงื™ืŸ ื•ื›ืชื‘ ืขืœื™ื”ืŸ ืณื‘ืŸ ืœื•ื™ืณ ื•ืขืœ ืฉืœืฉื” ื•ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ื•ืžืืชื™ื ื›ืชื‘ ืขืœื™ื”ืŸ ืณื—ืžืฉื” ืฉืงืœื™ืืณ ื‘ืœืœืŸ ื•ื ืชื ืŸ ื‘ืงืœืคื™ ืืžืจ ืœื”ืŸ ืณื˜ืœื• ืคื™ืชืงื™ื›ืืณ ืžื™ ืฉืขืœื” ื‘ื™ื“ื• ืณื‘ืŸ ืœื•ื™ืณ ืืžืจ ืœื• ืณื›ื‘ืจ ืคื“ืืš ื‘ืŸ ืœื•ื™ืณ ืžื™ ืฉืขืœื” ื‘ื™ื“ื• ืณื—ืžืฉืช ืฉืงืœื™ืืณ ืืžืจ ืœื• ืณืชืŸ ืคื“ื™ื•ื ืš ื•ืฆืืณ

What did he do? He brought 22,000 slips (see Numbers 3:39), and he wrote on them: Levite, and on 273 additional ones he wrote: Five shekels. He mixed them up and placed them in a box. He said to them: Draw your slips. Everyone whose hand drew up a slip that said: Levite, he said to him: A Levite already redeemed you. Everyone whose hand drew up a slip that said: Five shekels, he said to him: Pay your redemption money and you may leave.

ืจื‘ื™ ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ืื•ืžืจ ื‘ืžื—ื ื” ื ืฉืชื™ื™ืจื• ื‘ืฉืขื” ืฉืืžืจ ืœื• ื”ืงื“ื•ืฉ ื‘ืจื•ืš ื”ื•ื ืœืžืฉื” ืณืืกืคื” ืœื™ ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ืื™ืฉืณ ืืžืจื• ืืœื“ื“ ื•ืžื™ื“ื“ ืณืื™ืŸ ืื ื• ืจืื•ื™ื™ืŸ ืœืื•ืชื” ื’ื“ื•ืœื”ืณ ืืžืจ ื”ืงื“ื•ืฉ ื‘ืจื•ืš ื”ื•ื ืณื”ื•ืื™ืœ ื•ืžื™ืขื˜ืชื ืขืฆืžื›ื ื”ืจื™ื ื™ ืžื•ืกื™ืฃ ื’ื“ื•ืœื” ืขืœ ื’ื“ื•ืœืชื›ืืณ ื•ืžื” ื’ื“ื•ืœื” ื”ื•ืกื™ืฃ ืœื”ื ืฉื”ื ื‘ื™ืื™ื ื›ื•ืœืŸ ื ืชื ื‘ืื• ื•ืคืกืงื• ื•ื”ื ื ืชื ื‘ืื• ื•ืœื ืคืกืงื•

Rabbi Shimon says: Eldad and Medad remained in the camp, as they did not want to come to the lottery for the Elders. At the time that the Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Moses: Gather for me seventy Elders, Eldad and Medad said: We are not fitting for that level of greatness; we are not worthy of being appointed among the Elders. The Holy One, Blessed be He, said: Since you have made yourselves humble, I will add greatness to your greatness. And what is the greatness that he added to them? It was that all of the prophets, meaning the other Elders, who were given prophecy, prophesied for a time and then stopped prophesying, but they prophesied and did not stop.

ื•ืžื” ื ื‘ื•ืื” ื ืชื ื‘ืื• ืืžืจื• ืžืฉื” ืžืช ื™ื”ื•ืฉืข ืžื›ื ื™ืก ืืช ื™ืฉืจืืœ ืœืืจืฅ ืื‘ื ื—ื ื™ืŸ ืื•ืžืจ ืžืฉื•ื ืจื‘ื™ ืืœื™ืขื–ืจ ืขืœ ืขืกืงื™ ืฉืœื™ื• ื”ืŸ ืžืชื ื‘ืื™ื ืณืขืœื™ ืฉืœื™ื• ืขืœื™ ืฉืœื™ื•ืณ

Apropos Eldad and Medad being prophets, the Gemara asks: And what prophecy did they prophesy? They said: Moses will die, and Joshua will bring the Jewish people into Eretz Yisrael. Abba แธคanin says in the name of Rabbi Eliezer: They prophesied about the matter of the quail that came afterward (Numbers 11:31โ€“33), saying: Arise quail, arise quail, and then the quail came.

ืจื‘ ื ื—ืžืŸ ืืžืจ ืขืœ ืขืกืงื™ ื’ื•ื’ ื•ืžื’ื•ื’ ื”ื™ื• ืžืชื ื‘ืื™ืŸ ืฉื ืืžืจ ื›ื” ืืžืจ ื”ืณ ืืœื”ื™ื ื”ืืชื” ื”ื•ื ืืฉืจ ื“ื‘ืจืชื™ ื‘ื™ืžื™ื ืงื“ืžื•ื ื™ื ื‘ื™ื“ ืขื‘ื“ื™ ื ื‘ื™ืื™ ื™ืฉืจืืœ ื”ื ื‘ืื™ื ื‘ื™ืžื™ื ื”ื”ื ืฉื ื™ื ืœื”ื‘ื™ื ืืชืš ืขืœื™ื”ื ื•ื’ื•ืณ ืืœ ืชื™ืงืจื™ ืฉื ื™ื ืืœื ืฉื ื™ื ื•ืื™ื–ื• ื”ืŸ ืฉื ื™ื ื ื‘ื™ืื™ื ืฉื ืชื ื‘ืื• ื‘ืคืจืง ืื—ื“ ื ื‘ื•ืื” ืื—ืช ื”ื•ื™ ืื•ืžืจ ืืœื“ื“ ื•ืžื™ื“ื“

Rav Naแธฅman says: They were prophesying about the matter of Gog and Magog, as it is stated with regard to Gog and Magog: โ€œSo says the Lord God: Are you the one of whom I spoke in ancient days, through my servants, the prophets of Israel, who prophesied in those days for many years [shanim] that I would bring you against them?โ€ (Ezekiel 38:17). Do not read it as: โ€œYears [shanim]โ€; rather, read it as: Two [shenayim]. And who are the two prophets who prophesied the same prophecy at the same time? You must say: Eldad and Medad.

ืืžืจ ืžืจ ื›ืœ ื”ื ื‘ื™ืื™ื ื›ื•ืœืŸ ื ืชื ื‘ืื• ื•ืคืกืงื• ื•ื”ืŸ ื ืชื ื‘ืื• ื•ืœื ืคืกืงื• ืžื ื ืœืŸ ื“ืคืกืงื• ืื™ืœื™ืžื ืžื“ื›ืชื™ื‘ ื•ื™ืชื ื‘ืื• ื•ืœื ื™ืกืคื• ืืœื ืžืขืชื” ืงื•ืœ ื’ื“ื•ืœ ื•ืœื ื™ืกืฃ ื”ื›ื™ ื ืžื™ ื“ืœื ืื•ืกื™ืฃ ื”ื•ื ืืœื ื“ืœื ืคืกืง ื”ื•ื

The Master says: The baraita said: All of the prophets prophesied and then stopped, but Eldad and Medad prophesied and did not stop. The Gemara asks: From where do we derive that the other prophets stopped prophesying? If we say it is from that which is written about them: โ€œAnd they prophesied but they did so no more [velo yasafu]โ€ (Numbers 11:25), that is difficult: But if that is so, then concerning that which is stated in relation to the giving of the Torah: โ€œThese words the Lord spoke to all your assemblyโ€ฆwith a great voice, and it went on no more [velo yasaf]โ€ (Deuteronomy 5:19), so too shall it be understood that the great voice did not continue? Rather, the intention there is that it did not stop, interpreting the word yasafu as related to sof, meaning: End. Consequently, with regard to the seventy Elders as well, the word can be interpreted to mean that they did not stop prophesying.

ืืœื ื”ื›ื ื›ืชื™ื‘ ื•ื™ืชื ื‘ืื• ื”ืชื ื›ืชื™ื‘ ืžืชื ื‘ืื™ื ืขื“ื™ื™ืŸ ืžืชื ื‘ืื™ื ื•ื”ื•ืœื›ื™ื

Rather, the proof is as follows: It is written here with regard to the seventy Elders: โ€œThey prophesiedโ€ (Numbers 11:25), and it is written there: โ€œEldad and Medad are prophesying in the campโ€ (Numbers 11:27), from which it can be derived that they were continuously prophesying.

ื‘ืฉืœืžื ืœืžืืŸ ื“ืืžืจ ืžืฉื” ืžืช ื”ื™ื™ื ื• ื“ื›ืชื™ื‘ ืื“ื ื™ ืžืฉื” ื›ืœืื ืืœื ืœืžืืŸ ื“ืืžืจ ื”ื ืš ืชืจืชื™ ืžืื™ ืื“ื ื™ ืžืฉื” ื›ืœืื ื“ืœืื• ืื•ืจื— ืืจืขื ื“ื”ื•ื” ืœื™ื” ื›ืชืœืžื™ื“ ื”ืžื•ืจื” ื”ืœื›ื” ืœืคื ื™ ืจื‘ื•

With regard to the content of Eldad and Medadโ€™s prophecy, the Gemara asks: Granted, according to the one who says their prophecy was that Moses will die, this is the reason for that which is written there: โ€œAnd Joshua, son of Nun, the servant of Moses from his youth, answered and said: My master Moses, imprison themโ€ (Numbers 11:28), as their prophecy appeared to be a rebellion against Moses. But according to the one who says those other two opinions with regard to the content of the prophecy, according to which their prophecy had no connection to Moses, what is the reason that Joshua said: โ€œMy master Moses, imprison themโ€? The Gemara answers: He said this because it is not proper conduct for them to prophesy publicly in close proximity to Moses, as by doing so they are like a student who teaches a halakha in his teacherโ€™s presence, which is inappropriate.

ื‘ืฉืœืžื ืœืžืืŸ ื“ืืžืจ ื”ื ืš ืชืจืชื™ ื”ื™ื™ื ื• ื“ื›ืชื™ื‘ ืžื™ ื™ืชืŸ ืืœื ืœืžืืŸ ื“ืืžืจ ืžืฉื” ืžืช ืžื™ื ื— ื”ื•ื” ื ื™ื—ื ืœื™ื” ืœื ืกื™ื™ืžื•ื” ืงืžื™ื”

The Gemara asks: Granted, according to the one who says those other two opinions, this is the reason for that which is written: โ€œAnd Moses said to him: Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all of the Lordโ€™s people were prophetsโ€ (Numbers 11:29). But according to the one who says that Eldad and Medad prophesied that Moses will die and Joshua will bring Israel into the land, would it have been satisfactory to Moses that all of the people of God would utter similar prophecies? The Gemara answers: They did not conclude it before him. Moses was not aware of what they had said, but only that they were prophesying.

ืžืื™ ื›ืœืื ืืžืจ ืœื™ื” ื”ื˜ืœ ืขืœื™ื”ืŸ ืฆืจื›ื™ ืฆื™ื‘ื•ืจ ื•ื”ืŸ ื›ืœื™ืŸ ืžืื™ืœื™ื”ืŸ

The Gemara asks: What is the meaning of: โ€œImprison them [kelaโ€™em]โ€? The Gemara answers: Joshua said to him: Place responsibility for the needs of the public upon them, so that they will be occupied like the other Elders of Israel and they will cease [kalin] prophesying, on their own. Due to the burden of public responsibility they would not be able to be prophets.

ืžื ื™ื™ืŸ ืœื”ื‘ื™ื ืขื•ื“ ืฉืœืฉื”

ยง The mishna derives the halakha that there are twenty-three judges on a lesser Sanhedrin from the verses: โ€œAnd the congregation shall judge,โ€ and: โ€œAnd the congregation shall saveโ€ (Numbers 35:24โ€“25). The mishna understands that the term โ€œcongregationโ€ is referring to ten judges, so that the two congregations, one in each verse, total twenty judges. The mishna then asks: From where is it derived to bring three more judges to the court? The mishna answers: The implication of the verse: โ€œYou shall not follow a multitude to convictโ€ (Exodus 23:2), is that your inclination after a majority to exonerate is not like your inclination after a majority to convict, and a conviction must be by a majority of two.

ืกื•ืฃ ืกื•ืฃ ืœืจืขื” ืขืœ ืคื™ ืฉื ื™ื ืœื ืžืฉื›ื—ืช ืœื” ืื™ ืื—ื“ ืขืฉืจ ืžื–ื›ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉื ื™ื ืขืฉืจ ืžื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืื›ืชื™ ื—ื“ ื”ื•ื ืื™ ืขืฉืจื” ืžื–ื›ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉืœืฉื” ืขืฉืจ ืžื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืชืœืชื ื”ื•ื• ืืžืจ ืจื‘ื™ ืื‘ื”ื• ืื™ ืืชื” ืžื•ืฆื ืืœื ื‘ืžื•ืกื™ืคื™ืŸ ื•ื“ื‘ืจื™ ื”ื›ืœ ื•ื‘ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ื’ื“ื•ืœื” ื•ืืœื™ื‘ื ื“ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ื“ืืžืจ ืฉื‘ืขื™ื

The Gemara objects: Ultimately, you do not find an occurrence of the inclination for evil according to a majority of two judges. If eleven judges vote to acquit the defendant and twelve vote to convict, this is still only a majority of one, and if ten vote to acquit and thirteen vote to convict, they are a majority of three. With a court of twenty-three judges, there is no possible way to convict with a majority of two. Rabbi Abbahu says: You do not find such a scenario except in a case where they add two additional judges because one of the judges abstained from the deliberation, the other judges are split in their decisions, and the two added judges both vote to convict. And this is a possibility according to all tannaโ€™im, and in a case tried by the Great Sanhedrin according to the opinion of Rabbi Yehuda, who says there are seventy judges on the Great Sanhedrin. With an even number, it is possible to have a majority of two.

ื•ืืžืจ ืจื‘ื™ ืื‘ื”ื• ื‘ืžื•ืกื™ืคื™ืŸ ืขื•ืฉื™ืŸ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืฉืงื•ืœ ืœื›ืชื—ื™ืœื” ืคืฉื™ื˜ื ืžื”ื• ื“ืชื™ืžื ื”ืื™ ื“ืงืืžืจ ืื™ื ื™ ื™ื•ื“ืข ื›ืžืืŸ ื“ืื™ืชื™ื” ื“ืžื™ ื•ืื™ ืืžืจ ืžื™ืœืชื ืฉืžืขื™ื ืŸ ืœื™ื” ืงื ืžืฉืžืข ืœืŸ ื“ื”ืื™ ื“ืงืืžืจ ืื™ื ื™ ื™ื•ื“ืข ื›ืžืืŸ ื“ืœื™ืชื™ื” ื“ืžื™ ื•ืื™ ืืžืจ ื˜ืขืžื ืœื ืฉืžืขื™ื ืŸ ืœื™ื”

And Rabbi Abbahu says: When they add additional judges, they create a court consisting of an even number of judges ab initio. The Gemara asks: Isnโ€™t that obvious? What is the novelty in Rabbi Abbahuโ€™s statement? The Gemara answers: Lest you say: This judge who says: I do not know, is viewed as one who is still there, and if he says something afterward, we listen to him and include him in the count, so there are actually an odd number of judges on the court; therefore, Rabbi Abbahu teaches us that this judge who says: I do not know, is viewed as one who is not still there, and if he says a reason to rule in a certain manner afterward, we do not listen to him. Consequently, the court consists of an even number of judges.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ื›ื”ื ื ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ืฉืจืื• ื›ื•ืœืŸ ืœื—ื•ื‘ื” ืคื•ื˜ืจื™ืŸ ืื•ืชื• ืžืื™ ื˜ืขืžื ื›ื™ื•ืŸ ื“ื’ืžื™ืจื™ ื”ืœื ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืœืžืขื‘ื“ ืœื™ื” ื–ื›ื•ืชื ื•ื”ื ื™ ืชื• ืœื ื—ื–ื• ืœื™ื”

ยง Rav Kahana says: In a Sanhedrin where all the judges saw fit to convict the defendant in a case of capital law, they acquit him. The Gemara asks: What is the reasoning for this halakha? It is since it is learned as a tradition that suspension of the trial overnight is necessary in order to create a possibility of acquittal. The halakha is that they may not issue the guilty verdict on the same day the evidence was heard, as perhaps over the course of the night one of the judges will think of a reason to acquit the defendant. And as those judges all saw fit to convict him they will not see any further possibility to acquit him, because there will not be anyone arguing for such a verdict. Consequently, he cannot be convicted.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื•ื—ื ืŸ ืื™ืŸ ืžื•ืฉื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ื‘ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ืืœื ื‘ืขืœื™ ืงื•ืžื” ื•ื‘ืขืœื™ ื—ื›ืžื” ื•ื‘ืขืœื™ ืžืจืื” ื•ื‘ืขืœื™ ื–ืงื ื” ื•ื‘ืขืœื™ ื›ืฉืคื™ื ื•ื™ื•ื“ืขื™ื ื‘ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ืœืฉื•ืŸ ืฉืœื ืชื”ื ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ืฉื•ืžืขืช ืžืคื™ ื”ืžืชื•ืจื’ืžืŸ

ยง Rabbi Yoแธฅanan says: They place on the Great Sanhedrin only men of high stature, and of wisdom, and of pleasant appearance, and of suitable age so that they will be respected. And they must also be masters of sorcery, i.e., they know the nature of sorcery, so that they can judge sorcerers, and they must know all seventy languages in order that the Sanhedrin will not need to hear testimony from the mouth of a translator in a case where a witness speaks a different language.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ืื™ืŸ ืžื•ืฉื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ื‘ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ืŸ ืืœื ืžื™ ืฉื™ื•ื“ืข ืœื˜ื”ืจ ืืช ื”ืฉืจืฅ ืžืŸ ื”ืชื•ืจื” ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ืื ื™ ืื“ื•ืŸ ื•ืื˜ื”ืจื ื•

Rav Yehuda says that Rav says: They place on the Sanhedrin only one who knows how to render a carcass of a creeping animal pure by Torah law. The judges on the Sanhedrin must be so skilled at logical reasoning that they could even produce a convincing argument that creeping animals, which the Torah states explicitly are ritually impure, are actually pure. Rav said: I will discuss the halakha of the creeping animal and render it pure, i.e., I am able to demonstrate how it is possible to construct such a proof:

ื•ืžื” ื ื—ืฉ ืฉืžืžื™ืช ื•ืžืจื‘ื” ื˜ื•ืžืื” ื˜ื”ื•ืจ ืฉืจืฅ ืฉืื™ื ื• ืžืžื™ืช ื•ืžืจื‘ื” ื˜ื•ืžืื” ืื™ื ื• ื“ื™ืŸ ืฉื™ื”ื ื˜ื”ื•ืจ ื•ืœื ื”ื™ื ืžื™ื“ื™ ื“ื”ื•ื” ืืงื•ืฅ ื‘ืขืœืžื

If a snake, which kills other creatures whose carcasses are impure and thereby increases impurity in the world, is itself nevertheless pure, as it is not included in the list of impure creeping animals, then concerning a creeping animal that does not kill and does not increase impurity, isnโ€™t it logical that it should be pure? This argument is rejected: But it is not so; the logic of the halakha of a creeping animal is just as it is concerning the halakha with regard to an ordinary thorn, which can injure people or animals and can even kill and thereby increase impurity, but is nevertheless pure. It is therefore apparent that this consideration is not relevant to the halakhot of impurity.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ื›ืœ ืขื™ืจ ืฉืื™ืŸ ื‘ื” ืฉื ื™ื ืœื“ื‘ืจ ื•ืื—ื“ ืœืฉืžื•ืข ืื™ืŸ ืžื•ืฉื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ื‘ื” ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ื•ื‘ื‘ื™ืชืจ ื”ื•ื• ืฉืœืฉื” ื•ื‘ื™ื‘ื ื” ืืจื‘ืขื” ืจื‘ื™ ืืœื™ืขื–ืจ ื•ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื”ื•ืฉืข ื•ืจื‘ื™ ืขืงื™ื‘ื ื•ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ื”ืชื™ืžื ื™ ื“ืŸ ืœืคื ื™ื”ื ื‘ืงืจืงืข

ยง Rav Yehuda says that Rav says: With regard to any city that does not have among its residents two men who are able to speak all seventy languages and one additional man who is able to listen to and understand statements made in all the languages, even if he cannot speak all of them, they do not place a lesser Sanhedrin there. The members of the Sanhedrin do not all need to know all of the languages, but there must be at least this minimum number. And in Beitar there were three individuals who were able to speak all seventy languages, and in Yavne there were four, and they were: Rabbi Eliezer, and Rabbi Yehoshua, and Rabbi Akiva, and Shimon HaTimni, who was not an ordained Sage, and he would therefore deliberate before the other judges while seated on the ground, not among the rows of Sages.

ืžื™ืชื™ื‘ื™ ืฉืœื™ืฉื™ืช ื—ื›ืžื” ืจื‘ื™ืขื™ืช ืื™ืŸ ืœืžืขืœื” ื”ื™ืžื ื” ื”ื•ื ื“ืืžืจ ื›ื™ ื”ืื™ ืชื ื ื“ืชื ื™ื ืฉื ื™ื” ื—ื›ืžื” ืฉืœื™ืฉื™ืช ืื™ืŸ ืœืžืขืœื” ื”ื™ืžื ื”

The Gemara raises an objection to this from a baraita: A third, i.e., a Sanhedrin that has three individuals who can speak all seventy languages, is a wise Sanhedrin, and if it also has a fourth such person, there is no court above it, meaning that there is no need for additional language experts. Apparently the minimum requirement is three people who can speak the languages, not two. The Gemara answers: Rav states his opinion in accordance with the opinion of the following tanna, as it is taught in a baraita: A Sanhedrin that has a second language expert is wise; and if it also has a third, there is no court above it.

ืœืžื™ื“ื™ืŸ ืœืคื ื™ ื—ื›ืžื™ื ืœื•ื™ ืžืจื‘ื™ ื“ื ื™ืŸ ืœืคื ื™ ื—ื›ืžื™ื ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ื‘ืŸ ืขื–ืื™ ื•ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ื‘ืŸ ื–ื•ืžื ื•ื—ื ืŸ ื”ืžืฆืจื™ ื•ื—ื ื ื™ื ื‘ืŸ ื—ื›ื™ื ืื™ ืจื‘ ื ื—ืžืŸ ื‘ืจ ื™ืฆื—ืง ืžืชื ื™ ื—ืžืฉื” ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ื•ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ื—ื ืŸ ื•ื—ื ื ื™ื”

ยง Since the baraita stated that Shimon HaTimni would deliberate before them on the ground, the Gemara now lists various standard formulations used to introduce the statements of various Sages throughout the generations. If a source says: It was learned from the Sages, the intention is that this was a statement made by the Sage Levi who sat before and learned from Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi. If it says: They deliberated before the Sages, this is referring to Shimon ben Azzai, and Shimon ben Zoma, and แธคanan the Egyptian, and แธคananya ben แธคakhinai. Rav Naแธฅman bar Yitzแธฅak would teach five names for this list: Shimon ben Azzai, Shimon ben Zoma, and Shimon HaTimni, แธคanan the Egyptian, and แธคananya ben แธคakhinai.

ืจื‘ื•ืชื™ื ื• ืฉื‘ื‘ื‘ืœ ืจื‘ ื•ืฉืžื•ืืœ ืจื‘ื•ืชื™ื ื• ืฉื‘ืืจืฅ ื™ืฉืจืืœ ืจื‘ื™ ืื‘ื ื“ื™ื™ื ื™ ื’ื•ืœื” ืงืจื ื ื“ื™ื™ื ื™ ื“ืืจืฅ ื™ืฉืจืืœ ืจื‘ื™ ืืžื™ ื•ืจื‘ื™ ืืกื™ ื“ื™ื™ื ื™ ื“ืคื•ืžื‘ื“ื™ืชื ืจื‘ ืคืคื ื‘ืจ ืฉืžื•ืืœ ื“ื™ื™ื ื™ ื“ื ื”ืจื“ืขื ืจื‘ ืื“ื ื‘ืจ ืžื ื™ื•ืžื™ ืกื‘ื™ ื“ืกื•ืจื ืจื‘ ื”ื•ื ื ื•ืจื‘ ื—ืกื“ื ืกื‘ื™ ื“ืคื•ืžื‘ื“ื™ืชื ืจื‘ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ื•ืจื‘ ืขื™ื ื ื—ืจื™ืคื™ ื“ืคื•ืžื‘ื“ื™ืชื ืขื™ืคื” ื•ืื‘ื™ืžื™ ื‘ื ื™ ืจื—ื‘ื” ืืžื•ืจืื™ ื“ืคื•ืžื‘ื“ื™ืชื ืจื‘ื” ื•ืจื‘ ื™ื•ืกืฃ ืืžื•ืจืื™ ื“ื ื”ืจื“ืขื™ ืจื‘ ื—ืžื

The expression: Our Rabbis that are in Babylonia, is referring to Rav and Shmuel. The expression: Our Rabbis that are in Eretz Yisrael, is referring to Rabbi Abba. The expression: The judges of the Diaspora, is a reference to the Sage Karna. The phrase: The judges of Eretz Yisrael, is a reference to Rabbi Ami and Rabbi Asi. The phrase: The judges of Pumbedita, is referring to Rav Pappa bar Shmuel, who was the head of the court there, and: The judges of Nehardeโ€™a, is a reference to the court headed by Rav Adda bar Minyumi. The term: The Elders of Sura, is referring to Rav Huna and Rav แธคisda, and: The Elders of Pumbedita, is referring to Rav Yehuda and Rav Eina. The sharp ones of Pumbedita are Eifa and Avimi, the sons of Raแธฅava. The expression: The amoraโ€™im of Pumbedita, is referring to Rabba and Rav Yosef, and the phrase: The amoraโ€™im of Nehardeโ€™a, is referring to Rav แธคama.

ื ื”ืจื‘ืœืื™ ืžืชื ื• ืจืžื™ ื‘ืจ ื‘ืจื‘ื™ ืืžืจื™ ื‘ื™ ืจื‘ ืจื‘ ื”ื•ื ื ื•ื”ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ื”ื•ื ื ืืžืจื™ ื‘ื™ ืจื‘ ืืœื ืจื‘ ื”ืžื ื•ื ื ืืžืจื™ ื‘ืžืขืจื‘ื ืจื‘ื™ ื™ืจืžื™ื” ืฉืœื—ื• ืžืชื ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื•ืกื™ ื‘ืจ ื—ื ื™ื ื ืžื—ื›ื• ืขืœื” ื‘ืžืขืจื‘ื ืจื‘ื™ ืืœืขื–ืจ

If it says: The Sages of Neharbela taught, this is referring to Rami bar Berabi, and the statement: They say in the school of Rav, is a reference to Rav Huna. The Gemara asks: But doesnโ€™t Rav Huna sometimes say with regard to a given halakha: They say in the school of Rav? From this, it is apparent that a statement introduced by that formula cannot be made by Rav Huna himself, as Rav Huna quotes someone else with that introduction. The Gemara responds: Rather, the expression: They say in the school of Rav, must be referring to Rav Hamnuna. The formula: They say in the West, i.e., Eretz Yisrael, is referring to Rabbi Yirmeya; the expression: They sent a message from there, meaning from Eretz Yisrael, is referring to Rabbi Yosei bar แธคanina; and the statement: They laughed at it in the West, means that Rabbi Elazar did not accept a particular opinion.

ื•ื”ื ืฉืœื—ื• ืžืชื ืœื“ื‘ืจื™ ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื•ืกื™ ื‘ืจ ื—ื ื™ื ื ืืœื ืื™ืคื•ืš ืฉืœื—ื• ืžืชื ืจื‘ื™ ืืœืขื–ืจ ืžื—ื›ื• ืขืœื” ื‘ืžืขืจื‘ื ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื•ืกื™ ื‘ืจ ื—ื ื™ื ื

The Gemara asks: But in one instance it is reported that: They sent a message from there that began: According to the statement of Rabbi Yosei bar แธคanina. This indicates that the expression: They sent from there, is not itself a reference to a statement of Rabbi Yosei bar แธคanina. The Gemara answers: Rather, reverse the statements. The phrase: They sent from there, is a reference to Rabbi Elazar, and: They laughed at it in the West, means that Rabbi Yosei bar แธคanina did not accept a particular opinion.

ื•ื›ืžื” ื™ื”ื ื‘ืขื™ืจ ื•ื™ื”ื ืจืื•ื™ื” ืœืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ืŸ ืžืื” ื•ืขืฉืจื™ื ื•ื›ื•ืณ ืžืื” ื•ืขืฉืจื™ื ืžืื™ ืขื‘ื™ื“ืชื™ื™ื”ื• ืขืฉืจื™ื ื•ืฉืœืฉื” ื›ื ื’ื“ ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ืงื˜ื ื” ื•ืฉืœืฉ ืฉื•ืจื•ืช ืฉืœ ืขืฉืจื™ื ื•ืฉืœืฉื” ื”ืจื™ ืชืฉืขื™ื ื•ืชืจืชื™ ื•ืขืฉืจื” ื‘ื˜ืœื ื™ืŸ ืฉืœ ื‘ื™ืช ื”ื›ื ืกืช ื”ืจื™ ืžืื” ื•ืชืจื™

ยง The mishna teaches: And how many men must be in the city for it to be eligible for a lesser Sanhedrin? The opinion of the first tanna is that there must be 120 men. The Gemara asks: What is the relevance of the number 120? The Gemara explains that 23 are needed to correspond to the number of members of the lesser Sanhedrin, and it is necessary for there to be three rows of 23 students who sit before the lesser Sanhedrin to learn and also to advise them; that is a total of 92 people. And since there also need to be 10 idlers of the synagogue, people who are free from urgent work and are always sitting in the synagogue to take care of its repair and the other needs of the public, that would be 102.

ื•ืฉื ื™ ืกื•ืคืจื™ื ื•ืฉื ื™ ื—ื–ื ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉื ื™ ื‘ืขืœื™ ื“ื™ื ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉื ื™ ืขื“ื™ื ื•ืฉื ื™ ื–ื•ืžืžื™ืŸ ื•ืฉื ื™ ื–ื•ืžืžื™ ื–ื•ืžืžื™ืŸ ื”ืจื™ ืžืื” ื•ืืจื‘ื™ืกืจ

And in addition there are two scribes required for the Sanhedrin, and two bailiffs, and two litigants who will come to be judged. And there are two witnesses for one side, and two witnesses who could render those witnesses conspiring witnesses by testifying that they were elsewhere at the time of the alleged incident, and two additional witnesses could testify against the witnesses who rendered the first witnesses conspiring witnesses, rendering the second pair conspiring witnesses. All of these are necessary in order for a trial to take place, as is described in Deuteronomy 19:15โ€“21. Therefore, there are so far a total of 114 men who must be in the city.

ื•ืชื ื™ื ื›ืœ ืขื™ืจ ืฉืื™ืŸ ื‘ื” ืขืฉืจื” ื“ื‘ืจื™ื ื”ืœืœื• ืื™ืŸ ืชืœืžื™ื“ ื—ื›ื ืจืฉืื™ ืœื“ื•ืจ ื‘ืชื•ื›ื” ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืžื›ื™ืŸ ื•ืขื•ื ืฉื™ืŸ ื•ืงื•ืคื” ืฉืœ ืฆื“ืงื” ื ื’ื‘ื™ืช ื‘ืฉื ื™ื ื•ืžืชื—ืœืงืช ื‘ืฉืœืฉื” ื•ื‘ื™ืช ื”ื›ื ืกืช ื•ื‘ื™ืช ื”ืžืจื—ืฅ ื•ื‘ื™ืช ื”ื›ืกื ืจื•ืคื ื•ืื•ืžืŸ ื•ืœื‘ืœืจ ื•ื˜ื‘ื— ื•ืžืœืžื“ ืชื™ื ื•ืงื•ืช ืžืฉื•ื ืจื‘ื™ ืขืงื™ื‘ื ืืžืจื• ืืฃ ืžื™ื ื™ ืคื™ืจื ืžืคื ื™ ืฉืžื™ื ื™ ืคื™ืจื ืžืื™ืจื™ืŸ ืืช ื”ืขื™ื ื™ื

And it is taught in a baraita: A Torah scholar is not permitted to reside in any city that does not have these ten things: A court that has the authority to flog and punish transgressors; and a charity fund for which monies are collected by two people and distributed by three, as required by halakha. This leads to a requirement for another three people in the city. And a synagogue; and a bathhouse; and a public bathroom; a doctor; and a bloodletter; and a scribe [velavlar] to write sacred scrolls and necessary documents; and a ritual slaughterer; and a teacher of young children. With these additional requirements there are a minimum of 120 men who must be residents of the city. They said in the name of Rabbi Akiva: The city must also have varieties of fruit, because varieties of fruit illuminate the eyes.

ืจื‘ื™ ื ื—ืžื™ื” ืื•ืžืจ ื•ื›ื•ืณ ืชื ื™ื ืจื‘ื™ ืื•ืžืจ

The mishna teaches that Rabbi Neแธฅemya says: There must be 230 men in the city in order for it to be eligible for a lesser Sanhedrin, corresponding to the ministers of tens appointed in the wilderness by Moses at the suggestion of his father-in-law, Yitro (see Exodus 18:21). Each member of the Sanhedrin can be viewed as a judge with responsibility for ten men. It is taught in a baraita: Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi says:

  • This month's learning is sponsored by Ron and Shira Krebs to commemorate the 73rd yahrzeit of Shira's grandfather (Yitzchak Leib Ben David Ber HaCohen v'Malka), the 1st yahrzeit of Shira's father (Gershon Pinya Ben Yitzchak Leib HaCohen v'Menucha Sara), and the bar mitzvah of their son Eytan who will be making a siyum on Mishna Shas this month.

  • This month's learning is sponsored for the refuah shleima of Naama bat Yael Esther.

Want to explore more about the Daf?

See insights from our partners, contributors and community of women learners

Sorry, there aren't any posts in this category yet. We're adding more soon!

Sanhedrin 17

The William Davidson Talmud | Powered by Sefaria

Sanhedrin 17

ืขืžืš ืขืžืš ื•ืืช ื‘ื”ื“ื™ื™ื”ื• ื•ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ืขืžืš ืžืฉื•ื ืฉื›ื™ื ื”

with youโ€ (Numbers 11:16), i.e., they will stand โ€œwith you,โ€ and you are to be counted with them, leading to a total number of seventy-one. And Rabbi Yehuda holds that the term โ€œwith youโ€ is mentioned due to the Divine Presence that rested on Moses. According to Rabbi Yehuda, Moses was instructed to remain with the seventy Elders in order for the Divine Presence to rest upon them as well. He was not formally part of their court and therefore the number of Sages on the Great Sanhedrin is seventy.

ื•ืจื‘ื ืŸ ืืžืจ ืงืจื ื•ื ืฉืื• ืืชืš ื‘ืžืฉื ื”ืขื ืืชืš ื•ืืช ื‘ื”ื“ื™ื™ื”ื• ื•ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ืืชืš ื‘ื“ื•ืžื™ืŸ ืœืš

The Gemara asks: And how would the Rabbis respond to this line of reasoning? The Gemara answers: The verse states: โ€œAnd they shall bear the burden of the people with youโ€ (Numbers 11:17), which indicates: โ€œWith you,โ€ and you are to be counted with them. And how would Rabbi Yehuda respond to that? He would explain that the term โ€œwith youโ€ means similar to you, meaning, that the Elders appointed to the court had to be of fit lineage and free of blemish, like Moses.

ื•ืจื‘ื ืŸ ืžื•ื”ืงืœ ืžืขืœื™ืš ื•ื ืฉืื• ืืชืš ื ืคืงื ื•ื™ืœืคื ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ื’ื“ื•ืœื” ืžืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ืงื˜ื ื”

And from where do the Rabbis derive that halakha? They derive it from what was stated with regard to the appointment of the ministers of thousands and the ministers of hundreds: โ€œAnd they shall make it easier for you, and bear the burden with youโ€ (Exodus 18:22), understanding the term โ€œwith youโ€ to mean: Similar to you. And the halakha of the judges of the Great Sanhedrin of seventy is derived from the halakha of the judges of the lesser Sanhedrin, i.e., those ministers, that Moses appointed.

ืชื ื• ืจื‘ื ืŸ ืณื•ื™ืฉืืจื• ืฉื ื™ ืื ืฉื™ื ื‘ืžื—ื ื”ืณ ื™ืฉ ืื•ืžืจื™ื ื‘ืงืœืคื™ ื ืฉืชื™ื™ืจื•

ยง Apropos the appointment of the Elders by Moses, the Gemara discusses additional aspects of that event. There were seventy-two candidates for Elder but only seventy were needed. They were chosen by lots with their names put into a box. The Sages taught: The verse states: โ€œAnd there remained two men in the camp; the name of one was Eldad and the name of the other Medad, and the spirit rested upon them, and they were among those who were written but who did not go out to the tent, and they prophesied in the campโ€ (Numbers 11:26). Where did they remain? Some say this means they, i.e., their names, remained excluded from those selected from the lots in the box.

ืฉื‘ืฉืขื” ืฉืืžืจ ืœื• ื”ืงื“ื•ืฉ ื‘ืจื•ืš ื”ื•ื ืœืžืฉื” ืณืืกืคื” ืœื™ ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ืื™ืฉ ืžื–ืงื ื™ ื™ืฉืจืืœืณ ืืžืจ ืžืฉื” ืณื›ื™ืฆื“ ืืขืฉื” ืื‘ืจื•ืจ ืฉืฉื” ืžื›ืœ ืฉื‘ื˜ ื•ืฉื‘ื˜ ื ืžืฆืื• ืฉื ื™ื ื™ืชื™ืจื™ื ืื‘ืจื•ืจ ื—ืžืฉื” ื—ืžืฉื” ืžื›ืœ ืฉื‘ื˜ ื•ืฉื‘ื˜ ื ืžืฆืื• ืขืฉืจื” ื—ืกืจื™ื ืื‘ืจื•ืจ ืฉืฉื” ืžืฉื‘ื˜ ื–ื” ื•ื—ืžืฉื” ืžืฉื‘ื˜ ื–ื” ื”ืจื™ื ื™ ืžื˜ื™ืœ ืงื ืื” ื‘ื™ืŸ ื”ืฉื‘ื˜ื™ืืณ

The baraita explains: At the time that the Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Moses: โ€œGather for Me seventy men of the Elders of Israelโ€ (Numbers 11:16), Moses said: How shall I do it? If I select six from each and every tribe, there will be a total of seventy-two, which will be two extra. But if I select five from each and every tribe, there will be a total of sixty, lacking ten. And if I select six from this tribe and five from that tribe, I will bring about envy between the tribes, as those with fewer representatives will resent the others.

ืžื” ืขืฉื” ื‘ื™ืจืจ ืฉืฉื” ืฉืฉื” ื•ื”ื‘ื™ื ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ื•ืฉื ื™ื ืคื™ืชืงื™ืŸ ืขืœ ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ื›ืชื‘ ืณื–ืงืŸืณ ื•ืฉื ื™ื ื”ื ื™ื— ื—ืœืง ื‘ืœืœืŸ ื•ื ืชื ืŸ ื‘ืงืœืคื™ ืืžืจ ืœื”ื ืณื‘ื•ืื• ื•ื˜ืœื• ืคื™ืชืงื™ื›ืืณ ื›ืœ ืžื™ ืฉืขืœื” ื‘ื™ื“ื• ืณื–ืงืŸืณ ืืžืจ ืณื›ื‘ืจ ืงื™ื“ืฉืš ืฉืžื™ืืณ ืžื™ ืฉืขืœื” ื‘ื™ื“ื• ื—ืœืง ืืžืจ ืณื”ืžืงื•ื ืœื ื—ืคืฅ ื‘ืš ืื ื™ ืžื” ืืขืฉื” ืœืšืณ

What did he do? He selected six from every tribe and he brought seventy-two slips [pitakin]. On seventy of them he wrote: Elder, and he left two of them blank. He mixed them and placed them in the box. He then said to the seventy-two chosen candidates: Come and draw your slips. Everyone whose hand drew up a slip that said: Elder, he said to him: Heaven has already sanctified you. And everyone whose hand drew up a blank slip, he said to him: The Omnipresent does not desire you; what can I do for you?

ื›ื™ื•ืฆื ื‘ื“ื‘ืจ ืืชื” ืื•ืžืจ ืณื•ืœืงื—ืช ื—ืžืฉืช ื—ืžืฉืช ืฉืงืœื™ื ืœื’ืœื’ืœืชืณ ืืžืจ ืžืฉื” ืณื›ื™ืฆื“ ืืขืฉื” ืœื”ืŸ ืœื™ืฉืจืืœ ืื ืื•ืžืจ ืœื• ืชืŸ ืœื™ ืคื“ื™ื•ื ืš ื•ืฆื ื™ืืžืจ ืœื™ ื›ื‘ืจ ืคื“ืื ื™ ื‘ืŸ ืœื•ื™ืณ

The Gemara comments: You can say something similar to this to explain the verse about the redemption of the firstborn by the Levites: โ€œTake the Levites in place of all of the firstborn of the children of Israelโ€ฆand as for the redemption of the 273 of the firstborn of the children of Israel who are in excess over the number of the Levitesโ€ฆyou shall take five shekels per headโ€ (Numbers 3:45โ€“47). It can be explained that Moses said: How shall I do this for the Jews? If I say to one of the firstborns: Give me money for your redemption and you may leave, as you are among the 273 extra firstborns, he will say to me: A Levite already redeemed me; what is the reason you think that I am among those who were not redeemed?

ืžื” ืขืฉื” ื”ื‘ื™ื ืขืฉืจื™ื ื•ืฉื ื™ื ืืœืคื™ื ืคื™ืชืงื™ืŸ ื•ื›ืชื‘ ืขืœื™ื”ืŸ ืณื‘ืŸ ืœื•ื™ืณ ื•ืขืœ ืฉืœืฉื” ื•ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ื•ืžืืชื™ื ื›ืชื‘ ืขืœื™ื”ืŸ ืณื—ืžืฉื” ืฉืงืœื™ืืณ ื‘ืœืœืŸ ื•ื ืชื ืŸ ื‘ืงืœืคื™ ืืžืจ ืœื”ืŸ ืณื˜ืœื• ืคื™ืชืงื™ื›ืืณ ืžื™ ืฉืขืœื” ื‘ื™ื“ื• ืณื‘ืŸ ืœื•ื™ืณ ืืžืจ ืœื• ืณื›ื‘ืจ ืคื“ืืš ื‘ืŸ ืœื•ื™ืณ ืžื™ ืฉืขืœื” ื‘ื™ื“ื• ืณื—ืžืฉืช ืฉืงืœื™ืืณ ืืžืจ ืœื• ืณืชืŸ ืคื“ื™ื•ื ืš ื•ืฆืืณ

What did he do? He brought 22,000 slips (see Numbers 3:39), and he wrote on them: Levite, and on 273 additional ones he wrote: Five shekels. He mixed them up and placed them in a box. He said to them: Draw your slips. Everyone whose hand drew up a slip that said: Levite, he said to him: A Levite already redeemed you. Everyone whose hand drew up a slip that said: Five shekels, he said to him: Pay your redemption money and you may leave.

ืจื‘ื™ ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ืื•ืžืจ ื‘ืžื—ื ื” ื ืฉืชื™ื™ืจื• ื‘ืฉืขื” ืฉืืžืจ ืœื• ื”ืงื“ื•ืฉ ื‘ืจื•ืš ื”ื•ื ืœืžืฉื” ืณืืกืคื” ืœื™ ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ืื™ืฉืณ ืืžืจื• ืืœื“ื“ ื•ืžื™ื“ื“ ืณืื™ืŸ ืื ื• ืจืื•ื™ื™ืŸ ืœืื•ืชื” ื’ื“ื•ืœื”ืณ ืืžืจ ื”ืงื“ื•ืฉ ื‘ืจื•ืš ื”ื•ื ืณื”ื•ืื™ืœ ื•ืžื™ืขื˜ืชื ืขืฆืžื›ื ื”ืจื™ื ื™ ืžื•ืกื™ืฃ ื’ื“ื•ืœื” ืขืœ ื’ื“ื•ืœืชื›ืืณ ื•ืžื” ื’ื“ื•ืœื” ื”ื•ืกื™ืฃ ืœื”ื ืฉื”ื ื‘ื™ืื™ื ื›ื•ืœืŸ ื ืชื ื‘ืื• ื•ืคืกืงื• ื•ื”ื ื ืชื ื‘ืื• ื•ืœื ืคืกืงื•

Rabbi Shimon says: Eldad and Medad remained in the camp, as they did not want to come to the lottery for the Elders. At the time that the Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Moses: Gather for me seventy Elders, Eldad and Medad said: We are not fitting for that level of greatness; we are not worthy of being appointed among the Elders. The Holy One, Blessed be He, said: Since you have made yourselves humble, I will add greatness to your greatness. And what is the greatness that he added to them? It was that all of the prophets, meaning the other Elders, who were given prophecy, prophesied for a time and then stopped prophesying, but they prophesied and did not stop.

ื•ืžื” ื ื‘ื•ืื” ื ืชื ื‘ืื• ืืžืจื• ืžืฉื” ืžืช ื™ื”ื•ืฉืข ืžื›ื ื™ืก ืืช ื™ืฉืจืืœ ืœืืจืฅ ืื‘ื ื—ื ื™ืŸ ืื•ืžืจ ืžืฉื•ื ืจื‘ื™ ืืœื™ืขื–ืจ ืขืœ ืขืกืงื™ ืฉืœื™ื• ื”ืŸ ืžืชื ื‘ืื™ื ืณืขืœื™ ืฉืœื™ื• ืขืœื™ ืฉืœื™ื•ืณ

Apropos Eldad and Medad being prophets, the Gemara asks: And what prophecy did they prophesy? They said: Moses will die, and Joshua will bring the Jewish people into Eretz Yisrael. Abba แธคanin says in the name of Rabbi Eliezer: They prophesied about the matter of the quail that came afterward (Numbers 11:31โ€“33), saying: Arise quail, arise quail, and then the quail came.

ืจื‘ ื ื—ืžืŸ ืืžืจ ืขืœ ืขืกืงื™ ื’ื•ื’ ื•ืžื’ื•ื’ ื”ื™ื• ืžืชื ื‘ืื™ืŸ ืฉื ืืžืจ ื›ื” ืืžืจ ื”ืณ ืืœื”ื™ื ื”ืืชื” ื”ื•ื ืืฉืจ ื“ื‘ืจืชื™ ื‘ื™ืžื™ื ืงื“ืžื•ื ื™ื ื‘ื™ื“ ืขื‘ื“ื™ ื ื‘ื™ืื™ ื™ืฉืจืืœ ื”ื ื‘ืื™ื ื‘ื™ืžื™ื ื”ื”ื ืฉื ื™ื ืœื”ื‘ื™ื ืืชืš ืขืœื™ื”ื ื•ื’ื•ืณ ืืœ ืชื™ืงืจื™ ืฉื ื™ื ืืœื ืฉื ื™ื ื•ืื™ื–ื• ื”ืŸ ืฉื ื™ื ื ื‘ื™ืื™ื ืฉื ืชื ื‘ืื• ื‘ืคืจืง ืื—ื“ ื ื‘ื•ืื” ืื—ืช ื”ื•ื™ ืื•ืžืจ ืืœื“ื“ ื•ืžื™ื“ื“

Rav Naแธฅman says: They were prophesying about the matter of Gog and Magog, as it is stated with regard to Gog and Magog: โ€œSo says the Lord God: Are you the one of whom I spoke in ancient days, through my servants, the prophets of Israel, who prophesied in those days for many years [shanim] that I would bring you against them?โ€ (Ezekiel 38:17). Do not read it as: โ€œYears [shanim]โ€; rather, read it as: Two [shenayim]. And who are the two prophets who prophesied the same prophecy at the same time? You must say: Eldad and Medad.

ืืžืจ ืžืจ ื›ืœ ื”ื ื‘ื™ืื™ื ื›ื•ืœืŸ ื ืชื ื‘ืื• ื•ืคืกืงื• ื•ื”ืŸ ื ืชื ื‘ืื• ื•ืœื ืคืกืงื• ืžื ื ืœืŸ ื“ืคืกืงื• ืื™ืœื™ืžื ืžื“ื›ืชื™ื‘ ื•ื™ืชื ื‘ืื• ื•ืœื ื™ืกืคื• ืืœื ืžืขืชื” ืงื•ืœ ื’ื“ื•ืœ ื•ืœื ื™ืกืฃ ื”ื›ื™ ื ืžื™ ื“ืœื ืื•ืกื™ืฃ ื”ื•ื ืืœื ื“ืœื ืคืกืง ื”ื•ื

The Master says: The baraita said: All of the prophets prophesied and then stopped, but Eldad and Medad prophesied and did not stop. The Gemara asks: From where do we derive that the other prophets stopped prophesying? If we say it is from that which is written about them: โ€œAnd they prophesied but they did so no more [velo yasafu]โ€ (Numbers 11:25), that is difficult: But if that is so, then concerning that which is stated in relation to the giving of the Torah: โ€œThese words the Lord spoke to all your assemblyโ€ฆwith a great voice, and it went on no more [velo yasaf]โ€ (Deuteronomy 5:19), so too shall it be understood that the great voice did not continue? Rather, the intention there is that it did not stop, interpreting the word yasafu as related to sof, meaning: End. Consequently, with regard to the seventy Elders as well, the word can be interpreted to mean that they did not stop prophesying.

ืืœื ื”ื›ื ื›ืชื™ื‘ ื•ื™ืชื ื‘ืื• ื”ืชื ื›ืชื™ื‘ ืžืชื ื‘ืื™ื ืขื“ื™ื™ืŸ ืžืชื ื‘ืื™ื ื•ื”ื•ืœื›ื™ื

Rather, the proof is as follows: It is written here with regard to the seventy Elders: โ€œThey prophesiedโ€ (Numbers 11:25), and it is written there: โ€œEldad and Medad are prophesying in the campโ€ (Numbers 11:27), from which it can be derived that they were continuously prophesying.

ื‘ืฉืœืžื ืœืžืืŸ ื“ืืžืจ ืžืฉื” ืžืช ื”ื™ื™ื ื• ื“ื›ืชื™ื‘ ืื“ื ื™ ืžืฉื” ื›ืœืื ืืœื ืœืžืืŸ ื“ืืžืจ ื”ื ืš ืชืจืชื™ ืžืื™ ืื“ื ื™ ืžืฉื” ื›ืœืื ื“ืœืื• ืื•ืจื— ืืจืขื ื“ื”ื•ื” ืœื™ื” ื›ืชืœืžื™ื“ ื”ืžื•ืจื” ื”ืœื›ื” ืœืคื ื™ ืจื‘ื•

With regard to the content of Eldad and Medadโ€™s prophecy, the Gemara asks: Granted, according to the one who says their prophecy was that Moses will die, this is the reason for that which is written there: โ€œAnd Joshua, son of Nun, the servant of Moses from his youth, answered and said: My master Moses, imprison themโ€ (Numbers 11:28), as their prophecy appeared to be a rebellion against Moses. But according to the one who says those other two opinions with regard to the content of the prophecy, according to which their prophecy had no connection to Moses, what is the reason that Joshua said: โ€œMy master Moses, imprison themโ€? The Gemara answers: He said this because it is not proper conduct for them to prophesy publicly in close proximity to Moses, as by doing so they are like a student who teaches a halakha in his teacherโ€™s presence, which is inappropriate.

ื‘ืฉืœืžื ืœืžืืŸ ื“ืืžืจ ื”ื ืš ืชืจืชื™ ื”ื™ื™ื ื• ื“ื›ืชื™ื‘ ืžื™ ื™ืชืŸ ืืœื ืœืžืืŸ ื“ืืžืจ ืžืฉื” ืžืช ืžื™ื ื— ื”ื•ื” ื ื™ื—ื ืœื™ื” ืœื ืกื™ื™ืžื•ื” ืงืžื™ื”

The Gemara asks: Granted, according to the one who says those other two opinions, this is the reason for that which is written: โ€œAnd Moses said to him: Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all of the Lordโ€™s people were prophetsโ€ (Numbers 11:29). But according to the one who says that Eldad and Medad prophesied that Moses will die and Joshua will bring Israel into the land, would it have been satisfactory to Moses that all of the people of God would utter similar prophecies? The Gemara answers: They did not conclude it before him. Moses was not aware of what they had said, but only that they were prophesying.

ืžืื™ ื›ืœืื ืืžืจ ืœื™ื” ื”ื˜ืœ ืขืœื™ื”ืŸ ืฆืจื›ื™ ืฆื™ื‘ื•ืจ ื•ื”ืŸ ื›ืœื™ืŸ ืžืื™ืœื™ื”ืŸ

The Gemara asks: What is the meaning of: โ€œImprison them [kelaโ€™em]โ€? The Gemara answers: Joshua said to him: Place responsibility for the needs of the public upon them, so that they will be occupied like the other Elders of Israel and they will cease [kalin] prophesying, on their own. Due to the burden of public responsibility they would not be able to be prophets.

ืžื ื™ื™ืŸ ืœื”ื‘ื™ื ืขื•ื“ ืฉืœืฉื”

ยง The mishna derives the halakha that there are twenty-three judges on a lesser Sanhedrin from the verses: โ€œAnd the congregation shall judge,โ€ and: โ€œAnd the congregation shall saveโ€ (Numbers 35:24โ€“25). The mishna understands that the term โ€œcongregationโ€ is referring to ten judges, so that the two congregations, one in each verse, total twenty judges. The mishna then asks: From where is it derived to bring three more judges to the court? The mishna answers: The implication of the verse: โ€œYou shall not follow a multitude to convictโ€ (Exodus 23:2), is that your inclination after a majority to exonerate is not like your inclination after a majority to convict, and a conviction must be by a majority of two.

ืกื•ืฃ ืกื•ืฃ ืœืจืขื” ืขืœ ืคื™ ืฉื ื™ื ืœื ืžืฉื›ื—ืช ืœื” ืื™ ืื—ื“ ืขืฉืจ ืžื–ื›ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉื ื™ื ืขืฉืจ ืžื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืื›ืชื™ ื—ื“ ื”ื•ื ืื™ ืขืฉืจื” ืžื–ื›ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉืœืฉื” ืขืฉืจ ืžื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืชืœืชื ื”ื•ื• ืืžืจ ืจื‘ื™ ืื‘ื”ื• ืื™ ืืชื” ืžื•ืฆื ืืœื ื‘ืžื•ืกื™ืคื™ืŸ ื•ื“ื‘ืจื™ ื”ื›ืœ ื•ื‘ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ื’ื“ื•ืœื” ื•ืืœื™ื‘ื ื“ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ื“ืืžืจ ืฉื‘ืขื™ื

The Gemara objects: Ultimately, you do not find an occurrence of the inclination for evil according to a majority of two judges. If eleven judges vote to acquit the defendant and twelve vote to convict, this is still only a majority of one, and if ten vote to acquit and thirteen vote to convict, they are a majority of three. With a court of twenty-three judges, there is no possible way to convict with a majority of two. Rabbi Abbahu says: You do not find such a scenario except in a case where they add two additional judges because one of the judges abstained from the deliberation, the other judges are split in their decisions, and the two added judges both vote to convict. And this is a possibility according to all tannaโ€™im, and in a case tried by the Great Sanhedrin according to the opinion of Rabbi Yehuda, who says there are seventy judges on the Great Sanhedrin. With an even number, it is possible to have a majority of two.

ื•ืืžืจ ืจื‘ื™ ืื‘ื”ื• ื‘ืžื•ืกื™ืคื™ืŸ ืขื•ืฉื™ืŸ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืฉืงื•ืœ ืœื›ืชื—ื™ืœื” ืคืฉื™ื˜ื ืžื”ื• ื“ืชื™ืžื ื”ืื™ ื“ืงืืžืจ ืื™ื ื™ ื™ื•ื“ืข ื›ืžืืŸ ื“ืื™ืชื™ื” ื“ืžื™ ื•ืื™ ืืžืจ ืžื™ืœืชื ืฉืžืขื™ื ืŸ ืœื™ื” ืงื ืžืฉืžืข ืœืŸ ื“ื”ืื™ ื“ืงืืžืจ ืื™ื ื™ ื™ื•ื“ืข ื›ืžืืŸ ื“ืœื™ืชื™ื” ื“ืžื™ ื•ืื™ ืืžืจ ื˜ืขืžื ืœื ืฉืžืขื™ื ืŸ ืœื™ื”

And Rabbi Abbahu says: When they add additional judges, they create a court consisting of an even number of judges ab initio. The Gemara asks: Isnโ€™t that obvious? What is the novelty in Rabbi Abbahuโ€™s statement? The Gemara answers: Lest you say: This judge who says: I do not know, is viewed as one who is still there, and if he says something afterward, we listen to him and include him in the count, so there are actually an odd number of judges on the court; therefore, Rabbi Abbahu teaches us that this judge who says: I do not know, is viewed as one who is not still there, and if he says a reason to rule in a certain manner afterward, we do not listen to him. Consequently, the court consists of an even number of judges.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ื›ื”ื ื ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ืฉืจืื• ื›ื•ืœืŸ ืœื—ื•ื‘ื” ืคื•ื˜ืจื™ืŸ ืื•ืชื• ืžืื™ ื˜ืขืžื ื›ื™ื•ืŸ ื“ื’ืžื™ืจื™ ื”ืœื ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืœืžืขื‘ื“ ืœื™ื” ื–ื›ื•ืชื ื•ื”ื ื™ ืชื• ืœื ื—ื–ื• ืœื™ื”

ยง Rav Kahana says: In a Sanhedrin where all the judges saw fit to convict the defendant in a case of capital law, they acquit him. The Gemara asks: What is the reasoning for this halakha? It is since it is learned as a tradition that suspension of the trial overnight is necessary in order to create a possibility of acquittal. The halakha is that they may not issue the guilty verdict on the same day the evidence was heard, as perhaps over the course of the night one of the judges will think of a reason to acquit the defendant. And as those judges all saw fit to convict him they will not see any further possibility to acquit him, because there will not be anyone arguing for such a verdict. Consequently, he cannot be convicted.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื•ื—ื ืŸ ืื™ืŸ ืžื•ืฉื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ื‘ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ืืœื ื‘ืขืœื™ ืงื•ืžื” ื•ื‘ืขืœื™ ื—ื›ืžื” ื•ื‘ืขืœื™ ืžืจืื” ื•ื‘ืขืœื™ ื–ืงื ื” ื•ื‘ืขืœื™ ื›ืฉืคื™ื ื•ื™ื•ื“ืขื™ื ื‘ืฉื‘ืขื™ื ืœืฉื•ืŸ ืฉืœื ืชื”ื ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ืฉื•ืžืขืช ืžืคื™ ื”ืžืชื•ืจื’ืžืŸ

ยง Rabbi Yoแธฅanan says: They place on the Great Sanhedrin only men of high stature, and of wisdom, and of pleasant appearance, and of suitable age so that they will be respected. And they must also be masters of sorcery, i.e., they know the nature of sorcery, so that they can judge sorcerers, and they must know all seventy languages in order that the Sanhedrin will not need to hear testimony from the mouth of a translator in a case where a witness speaks a different language.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ืื™ืŸ ืžื•ืฉื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ื‘ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ืŸ ืืœื ืžื™ ืฉื™ื•ื“ืข ืœื˜ื”ืจ ืืช ื”ืฉืจืฅ ืžืŸ ื”ืชื•ืจื” ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ืื ื™ ืื“ื•ืŸ ื•ืื˜ื”ืจื ื•

Rav Yehuda says that Rav says: They place on the Sanhedrin only one who knows how to render a carcass of a creeping animal pure by Torah law. The judges on the Sanhedrin must be so skilled at logical reasoning that they could even produce a convincing argument that creeping animals, which the Torah states explicitly are ritually impure, are actually pure. Rav said: I will discuss the halakha of the creeping animal and render it pure, i.e., I am able to demonstrate how it is possible to construct such a proof:

ื•ืžื” ื ื—ืฉ ืฉืžืžื™ืช ื•ืžืจื‘ื” ื˜ื•ืžืื” ื˜ื”ื•ืจ ืฉืจืฅ ืฉืื™ื ื• ืžืžื™ืช ื•ืžืจื‘ื” ื˜ื•ืžืื” ืื™ื ื• ื“ื™ืŸ ืฉื™ื”ื ื˜ื”ื•ืจ ื•ืœื ื”ื™ื ืžื™ื“ื™ ื“ื”ื•ื” ืืงื•ืฅ ื‘ืขืœืžื

If a snake, which kills other creatures whose carcasses are impure and thereby increases impurity in the world, is itself nevertheless pure, as it is not included in the list of impure creeping animals, then concerning a creeping animal that does not kill and does not increase impurity, isnโ€™t it logical that it should be pure? This argument is rejected: But it is not so; the logic of the halakha of a creeping animal is just as it is concerning the halakha with regard to an ordinary thorn, which can injure people or animals and can even kill and thereby increase impurity, but is nevertheless pure. It is therefore apparent that this consideration is not relevant to the halakhot of impurity.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ื›ืœ ืขื™ืจ ืฉืื™ืŸ ื‘ื” ืฉื ื™ื ืœื“ื‘ืจ ื•ืื—ื“ ืœืฉืžื•ืข ืื™ืŸ ืžื•ืฉื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ื‘ื” ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ื•ื‘ื‘ื™ืชืจ ื”ื•ื• ืฉืœืฉื” ื•ื‘ื™ื‘ื ื” ืืจื‘ืขื” ืจื‘ื™ ืืœื™ืขื–ืจ ื•ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื”ื•ืฉืข ื•ืจื‘ื™ ืขืงื™ื‘ื ื•ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ื”ืชื™ืžื ื™ ื“ืŸ ืœืคื ื™ื”ื ื‘ืงืจืงืข

ยง Rav Yehuda says that Rav says: With regard to any city that does not have among its residents two men who are able to speak all seventy languages and one additional man who is able to listen to and understand statements made in all the languages, even if he cannot speak all of them, they do not place a lesser Sanhedrin there. The members of the Sanhedrin do not all need to know all of the languages, but there must be at least this minimum number. And in Beitar there were three individuals who were able to speak all seventy languages, and in Yavne there were four, and they were: Rabbi Eliezer, and Rabbi Yehoshua, and Rabbi Akiva, and Shimon HaTimni, who was not an ordained Sage, and he would therefore deliberate before the other judges while seated on the ground, not among the rows of Sages.

ืžื™ืชื™ื‘ื™ ืฉืœื™ืฉื™ืช ื—ื›ืžื” ืจื‘ื™ืขื™ืช ืื™ืŸ ืœืžืขืœื” ื”ื™ืžื ื” ื”ื•ื ื“ืืžืจ ื›ื™ ื”ืื™ ืชื ื ื“ืชื ื™ื ืฉื ื™ื” ื—ื›ืžื” ืฉืœื™ืฉื™ืช ืื™ืŸ ืœืžืขืœื” ื”ื™ืžื ื”

The Gemara raises an objection to this from a baraita: A third, i.e., a Sanhedrin that has three individuals who can speak all seventy languages, is a wise Sanhedrin, and if it also has a fourth such person, there is no court above it, meaning that there is no need for additional language experts. Apparently the minimum requirement is three people who can speak the languages, not two. The Gemara answers: Rav states his opinion in accordance with the opinion of the following tanna, as it is taught in a baraita: A Sanhedrin that has a second language expert is wise; and if it also has a third, there is no court above it.

ืœืžื™ื“ื™ืŸ ืœืคื ื™ ื—ื›ืžื™ื ืœื•ื™ ืžืจื‘ื™ ื“ื ื™ืŸ ืœืคื ื™ ื—ื›ืžื™ื ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ื‘ืŸ ืขื–ืื™ ื•ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ื‘ืŸ ื–ื•ืžื ื•ื—ื ืŸ ื”ืžืฆืจื™ ื•ื—ื ื ื™ื ื‘ืŸ ื—ื›ื™ื ืื™ ืจื‘ ื ื—ืžืŸ ื‘ืจ ื™ืฆื—ืง ืžืชื ื™ ื—ืžืฉื” ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ื•ืฉืžืขื•ืŸ ื—ื ืŸ ื•ื—ื ื ื™ื”

ยง Since the baraita stated that Shimon HaTimni would deliberate before them on the ground, the Gemara now lists various standard formulations used to introduce the statements of various Sages throughout the generations. If a source says: It was learned from the Sages, the intention is that this was a statement made by the Sage Levi who sat before and learned from Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi. If it says: They deliberated before the Sages, this is referring to Shimon ben Azzai, and Shimon ben Zoma, and แธคanan the Egyptian, and แธคananya ben แธคakhinai. Rav Naแธฅman bar Yitzแธฅak would teach five names for this list: Shimon ben Azzai, Shimon ben Zoma, and Shimon HaTimni, แธคanan the Egyptian, and แธคananya ben แธคakhinai.

ืจื‘ื•ืชื™ื ื• ืฉื‘ื‘ื‘ืœ ืจื‘ ื•ืฉืžื•ืืœ ืจื‘ื•ืชื™ื ื• ืฉื‘ืืจืฅ ื™ืฉืจืืœ ืจื‘ื™ ืื‘ื ื“ื™ื™ื ื™ ื’ื•ืœื” ืงืจื ื ื“ื™ื™ื ื™ ื“ืืจืฅ ื™ืฉืจืืœ ืจื‘ื™ ืืžื™ ื•ืจื‘ื™ ืืกื™ ื“ื™ื™ื ื™ ื“ืคื•ืžื‘ื“ื™ืชื ืจื‘ ืคืคื ื‘ืจ ืฉืžื•ืืœ ื“ื™ื™ื ื™ ื“ื ื”ืจื“ืขื ืจื‘ ืื“ื ื‘ืจ ืžื ื™ื•ืžื™ ืกื‘ื™ ื“ืกื•ืจื ืจื‘ ื”ื•ื ื ื•ืจื‘ ื—ืกื“ื ืกื‘ื™ ื“ืคื•ืžื‘ื“ื™ืชื ืจื‘ ื™ื”ื•ื“ื” ื•ืจื‘ ืขื™ื ื ื—ืจื™ืคื™ ื“ืคื•ืžื‘ื“ื™ืชื ืขื™ืคื” ื•ืื‘ื™ืžื™ ื‘ื ื™ ืจื—ื‘ื” ืืžื•ืจืื™ ื“ืคื•ืžื‘ื“ื™ืชื ืจื‘ื” ื•ืจื‘ ื™ื•ืกืฃ ืืžื•ืจืื™ ื“ื ื”ืจื“ืขื™ ืจื‘ ื—ืžื

The expression: Our Rabbis that are in Babylonia, is referring to Rav and Shmuel. The expression: Our Rabbis that are in Eretz Yisrael, is referring to Rabbi Abba. The expression: The judges of the Diaspora, is a reference to the Sage Karna. The phrase: The judges of Eretz Yisrael, is a reference to Rabbi Ami and Rabbi Asi. The phrase: The judges of Pumbedita, is referring to Rav Pappa bar Shmuel, who was the head of the court there, and: The judges of Nehardeโ€™a, is a reference to the court headed by Rav Adda bar Minyumi. The term: The Elders of Sura, is referring to Rav Huna and Rav แธคisda, and: The Elders of Pumbedita, is referring to Rav Yehuda and Rav Eina. The sharp ones of Pumbedita are Eifa and Avimi, the sons of Raแธฅava. The expression: The amoraโ€™im of Pumbedita, is referring to Rabba and Rav Yosef, and the phrase: The amoraโ€™im of Nehardeโ€™a, is referring to Rav แธคama.

ื ื”ืจื‘ืœืื™ ืžืชื ื• ืจืžื™ ื‘ืจ ื‘ืจื‘ื™ ืืžืจื™ ื‘ื™ ืจื‘ ืจื‘ ื”ื•ื ื ื•ื”ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ื”ื•ื ื ืืžืจื™ ื‘ื™ ืจื‘ ืืœื ืจื‘ ื”ืžื ื•ื ื ืืžืจื™ ื‘ืžืขืจื‘ื ืจื‘ื™ ื™ืจืžื™ื” ืฉืœื—ื• ืžืชื ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื•ืกื™ ื‘ืจ ื—ื ื™ื ื ืžื—ื›ื• ืขืœื” ื‘ืžืขืจื‘ื ืจื‘ื™ ืืœืขื–ืจ

If it says: The Sages of Neharbela taught, this is referring to Rami bar Berabi, and the statement: They say in the school of Rav, is a reference to Rav Huna. The Gemara asks: But doesnโ€™t Rav Huna sometimes say with regard to a given halakha: They say in the school of Rav? From this, it is apparent that a statement introduced by that formula cannot be made by Rav Huna himself, as Rav Huna quotes someone else with that introduction. The Gemara responds: Rather, the expression: They say in the school of Rav, must be referring to Rav Hamnuna. The formula: They say in the West, i.e., Eretz Yisrael, is referring to Rabbi Yirmeya; the expression: They sent a message from there, meaning from Eretz Yisrael, is referring to Rabbi Yosei bar แธคanina; and the statement: They laughed at it in the West, means that Rabbi Elazar did not accept a particular opinion.

ื•ื”ื ืฉืœื—ื• ืžืชื ืœื“ื‘ืจื™ ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื•ืกื™ ื‘ืจ ื—ื ื™ื ื ืืœื ืื™ืคื•ืš ืฉืœื—ื• ืžืชื ืจื‘ื™ ืืœืขื–ืจ ืžื—ื›ื• ืขืœื” ื‘ืžืขืจื‘ื ืจื‘ื™ ื™ื•ืกื™ ื‘ืจ ื—ื ื™ื ื

The Gemara asks: But in one instance it is reported that: They sent a message from there that began: According to the statement of Rabbi Yosei bar แธคanina. This indicates that the expression: They sent from there, is not itself a reference to a statement of Rabbi Yosei bar แธคanina. The Gemara answers: Rather, reverse the statements. The phrase: They sent from there, is a reference to Rabbi Elazar, and: They laughed at it in the West, means that Rabbi Yosei bar แธคanina did not accept a particular opinion.

ื•ื›ืžื” ื™ื”ื ื‘ืขื™ืจ ื•ื™ื”ื ืจืื•ื™ื” ืœืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ืŸ ืžืื” ื•ืขืฉืจื™ื ื•ื›ื•ืณ ืžืื” ื•ืขืฉืจื™ื ืžืื™ ืขื‘ื™ื“ืชื™ื™ื”ื• ืขืฉืจื™ื ื•ืฉืœืฉื” ื›ื ื’ื“ ืกื ื”ื“ืจื™ ืงื˜ื ื” ื•ืฉืœืฉ ืฉื•ืจื•ืช ืฉืœ ืขืฉืจื™ื ื•ืฉืœืฉื” ื”ืจื™ ืชืฉืขื™ื ื•ืชืจืชื™ ื•ืขืฉืจื” ื‘ื˜ืœื ื™ืŸ ืฉืœ ื‘ื™ืช ื”ื›ื ืกืช ื”ืจื™ ืžืื” ื•ืชืจื™

ยง The mishna teaches: And how many men must be in the city for it to be eligible for a lesser Sanhedrin? The opinion of the first tanna is that there must be 120 men. The Gemara asks: What is the relevance of the number 120? The Gemara explains that 23 are needed to correspond to the number of members of the lesser Sanhedrin, and it is necessary for there to be three rows of 23 students who sit before the lesser Sanhedrin to learn and also to advise them; that is a total of 92 people. And since there also need to be 10 idlers of the synagogue, people who are free from urgent work and are always sitting in the synagogue to take care of its repair and the other needs of the public, that would be 102.

ื•ืฉื ื™ ืกื•ืคืจื™ื ื•ืฉื ื™ ื—ื–ื ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉื ื™ ื‘ืขืœื™ ื“ื™ื ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉื ื™ ืขื“ื™ื ื•ืฉื ื™ ื–ื•ืžืžื™ืŸ ื•ืฉื ื™ ื–ื•ืžืžื™ ื–ื•ืžืžื™ืŸ ื”ืจื™ ืžืื” ื•ืืจื‘ื™ืกืจ

And in addition there are two scribes required for the Sanhedrin, and two bailiffs, and two litigants who will come to be judged. And there are two witnesses for one side, and two witnesses who could render those witnesses conspiring witnesses by testifying that they were elsewhere at the time of the alleged incident, and two additional witnesses could testify against the witnesses who rendered the first witnesses conspiring witnesses, rendering the second pair conspiring witnesses. All of these are necessary in order for a trial to take place, as is described in Deuteronomy 19:15โ€“21. Therefore, there are so far a total of 114 men who must be in the city.

ื•ืชื ื™ื ื›ืœ ืขื™ืจ ืฉืื™ืŸ ื‘ื” ืขืฉืจื” ื“ื‘ืจื™ื ื”ืœืœื• ืื™ืŸ ืชืœืžื™ื“ ื—ื›ื ืจืฉืื™ ืœื“ื•ืจ ื‘ืชื•ื›ื” ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืžื›ื™ืŸ ื•ืขื•ื ืฉื™ืŸ ื•ืงื•ืคื” ืฉืœ ืฆื“ืงื” ื ื’ื‘ื™ืช ื‘ืฉื ื™ื ื•ืžืชื—ืœืงืช ื‘ืฉืœืฉื” ื•ื‘ื™ืช ื”ื›ื ืกืช ื•ื‘ื™ืช ื”ืžืจื—ืฅ ื•ื‘ื™ืช ื”ื›ืกื ืจื•ืคื ื•ืื•ืžืŸ ื•ืœื‘ืœืจ ื•ื˜ื‘ื— ื•ืžืœืžื“ ืชื™ื ื•ืงื•ืช ืžืฉื•ื ืจื‘ื™ ืขืงื™ื‘ื ืืžืจื• ืืฃ ืžื™ื ื™ ืคื™ืจื ืžืคื ื™ ืฉืžื™ื ื™ ืคื™ืจื ืžืื™ืจื™ืŸ ืืช ื”ืขื™ื ื™ื

And it is taught in a baraita: A Torah scholar is not permitted to reside in any city that does not have these ten things: A court that has the authority to flog and punish transgressors; and a charity fund for which monies are collected by two people and distributed by three, as required by halakha. This leads to a requirement for another three people in the city. And a synagogue; and a bathhouse; and a public bathroom; a doctor; and a bloodletter; and a scribe [velavlar] to write sacred scrolls and necessary documents; and a ritual slaughterer; and a teacher of young children. With these additional requirements there are a minimum of 120 men who must be residents of the city. They said in the name of Rabbi Akiva: The city must also have varieties of fruit, because varieties of fruit illuminate the eyes.

ืจื‘ื™ ื ื—ืžื™ื” ืื•ืžืจ ื•ื›ื•ืณ ืชื ื™ื ืจื‘ื™ ืื•ืžืจ

The mishna teaches that Rabbi Neแธฅemya says: There must be 230 men in the city in order for it to be eligible for a lesser Sanhedrin, corresponding to the ministers of tens appointed in the wilderness by Moses at the suggestion of his father-in-law, Yitro (see Exodus 18:21). Each member of the Sanhedrin can be viewed as a judge with responsibility for ten men. It is taught in a baraita: Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi says:

Scroll To Top