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Today's Daf Yomi

December 27, 2017 | ื˜ืณ ื‘ื˜ื‘ืช ืชืฉืขืดื—

  • This month's learning is sponsored by Joanna Rom and Steven Goldberg in loving memory of Steve's mother Shirley "Nana" Goldberg (Sura Tema bat Chaim v'Hanka)

Shevuot 29

What is an oath made in vain?ย  Details regarding this type of oath are discussed.

ื•ืื›ืœ ืชืื ื™ื ื•ื”ืคืจื™ืฉ ืงืจื‘ืŸ ื•ืื—ืจ ื›ืš ืื›ืœ ืขื ื‘ื™ื ืœื—ื•ื“ื™ื™ื”ื• ื”ื•ื™ื ืœื”ื• ืขื ื‘ื™ื ื—ืฆื™ ืฉื™ืขื•ืจ ื•ืื—ืฆื™ ืฉื™ืขื•ืจ ืœื ืžื™ื—ื™ื™ื‘ ืงืจื‘ืŸ ื”ื›ื ื ืžื™ ื›ื’ื•ืŸ ื“ืืžืจ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืœื ืื•ื›ืœ ืขืฉืจ ื•ื—ื–ืจ ื•ืืžืจ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืœื ืื•ื›ืœ ืชืฉืข ื•ืื›ืœ ืชืฉืข ื•ื”ืคืจื™ืฉ ืงืจื‘ืŸ ื•ืื—ืจ ื›ืš ืื›ืœ ืขืฉื™ืจื™ืช ื”ื•ื™ื ืœื” ืขืฉื™ืจื™ืช ื—ืฆื™ ืฉื™ืขื•ืจ ื•ืื—ืฆื™ ืฉื™ืขื•ืจ ืœื ืžื™ื—ื™ื™ื‘

and he unwittingly ate figs and set aside an offering for breaking the second oath, and afterward he unwittingly ate grapes alone, he is exempt from liability for breaking the first oath. The grapes are tantamount to a half-measure of his first oath, which was not to eat figs and grapes together, and one is not liable to bring an offering for a half-measure. Here also, where he said: On my oath I will not eat ten, and then said: On my oath I will not eat nine, and he ate nine and set aside an offering for breaking his second oath, and later he ate the tenth, this tenth is tantamount to a half-measure of his first oath, and one is not liable to bring an offering for a half-measure.

ืžืชื ื™ืณ ืื™ื–ื• ื”ื™ื ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื ื ืฉื‘ืข ืœืฉื ื•ืช ืืช ื”ื™ื“ื•ืข ืœืื“ื ืืžืจ ืขืœ ื”ืขืžื•ื“ ืฉืœ ืื‘ืŸ ืฉื”ื•ื ืฉืœ ื–ื”ื‘ ื•ืขืœ ื”ืื™ืฉ ืฉื”ื•ื ืืฉื” ื•ืขืœ ื”ืืฉื” ืฉื”ื™ื ืื™ืฉ

MISHNA: Which oath is an oath taken in vain, mentioned in the previous mishna (27b)? It is when one takes an oath to deny that which is known to people to be true, for example, one says about a stone column that it is made of gold, or about a man that he is a woman, or about a woman that she is a man.

ื ืฉื‘ืข ืขืœ ื“ื‘ืจ ืฉืื™ ืืคืฉืจ ืœื• ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ื’ืžืœ ืฉืคื•ืจื— ื‘ืื•ื™ืจ ื•ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ื ื—ืฉ ื›ืงื•ืจืช ื‘ื™ืช ื”ื‘ื“

Another type of oath taken in vain is when one takes an oath about a matter that is impossible, e.g., if he says: If I did not see a camel flying through the air, or: If I did not see a snake as large as the beam of the olive press.

ืืžืจ ืœืขื“ื™ื ื‘ื•ืื• ื•ื”ืขื™ื“ื•ื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืœื ื ืขื™ื“ืš ื ืฉื‘ืข ืœื‘ื˜ืœ ืืช ื”ืžืฆื•ื” ืฉืœื ืœืขืฉื•ืช ืกื•ื›ื” ื•ืฉืœื ืœื™ื˜ื•ืœ ืœื•ืœื‘ ื•ืฉืœื ืœื”ื ื™ื— ืชืคื™ืœื™ืŸ ื–ื• ื”ื™ื ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื ืฉื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืขืœ ื–ื“ื•ื ื” ืžื›ื•ืช ื•ืขืœ ืฉื’ื’ืชื” ืคื˜ื•ืจ

In the case of one who said to witnesses: Come and testify for me, and they replied: On our oath we will not testify for you, that is an oath taken in vain, because it involves taking an oath to refrain from performing a mitzva. Other examples of this include an oath not to build a sukka, or not to take a lulav, or not to don phylacteries. This type of oath is an oath taken in vain, for which one is liable to receive lashes if he takes the oath intentionally, and for which he is exempt if he takes it unwittingly.

ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืื•ื›ืœ ื›ื›ืจ ื–ื• ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืœื ืื•ื›ืœื ื” ื”ืจืืฉื•ื ื” ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™ ื•ื”ืฉื ื™ื” ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื

If one said: On my oath I will eat this loaf, and later said: On my oath I will not eat it, the first oath is an oath on an utterance, and the second is an oath taken in vain, as he took an oath to perform an action that would violate his previous oath.

ืื›ืœื” ืขื‘ืจ ืขืœ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื ืœื ืื›ืœื” ืขื‘ืจ ืขืœ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™

If he ate it, he violated the prohibition against taking an oath in vain. If he did not eat it, he violated the prohibition against breaking an oath on an utterance.

ื’ืžืณ ืืžืจ ืขื•ืœื ื•ื”ื•ื ืฉื ื™ื›ืจ ืœืฉืœืฉื” ื‘ื ื™ ืื“ื

GEMARA: With regard to an oath taken in vain that denies that which is known to people, Ulla says: It is considered known to people when it is a fact that is known to three people.

ื ืฉื‘ืข ืขืœ ื“ื‘ืจ ืฉืื™ ืืคืฉืจ ืœื• ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ื’ืžืœ ืคื•ืจื— ื‘ืื•ื™ืจืณ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืจืื™ืชื™ ืœื ืงืืžืจ ืžืื™ ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ืื‘ื™ื™ ืืžืจ ืชื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืจืื™ืชื™ ืจื‘ื ืืžืจ ื‘ืื•ืžืจ ื™ืืกืจื• ื›ืœ ืคื™ืจื•ืช ืฉื‘ืขื•ืœื ืขืœื™ ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ื’ืžืœ ืคื•ืจื— ื‘ืื•ื™ืจ

ยง The mishna describes an oath taken in vain where one takes an oath about a matter that is impossible, e.g., where one says: If I did not see a camel flying through the air. The Gemara points out: The tanna of the mishna did not say: On my oath I saw. What is the meaning of: If I did not see? Abaye said: Emend the language of the mishna and teach: On my oath I saw. Rava said: This is part of a larger statement where one says: Let all the produce in the world be prohibited for me if I did not see a camel flying through the air.

ืืžืจ ืœื™ื” ืจื‘ื™ื ื ืœืจื‘ ืืฉื™ ื•ื“ืœืžื ื”ืื™ ื’ื‘ืจื ืฆื™ืคื•ืจื ืจื‘ื ื—ื–ื™ ื•ืืกื™ืง ืœื™ื” ืฉืžื ื’ืžืœื ื•ื›ื™ ืงื ืžืฉืชื‘ืข ืื“ืขืชื™ื” ื“ื™ื“ื™ื” ืื™ืฉืชื‘ืข

With regard to the oath: If I did not see a camel flying through the air, Ravina said to Rav Ashi: Perhaps this man who took this oath saw a great bird and named it for himself: Camel, and when he took the oath, he took the oath according to his own understanding.

ื•ื›ื™ ืชื™ืžื ื‘ืชืจ ืคื•ืžื™ื” ืื–ืœื™ื ืŸ ื•ืœื ืื–ืœื™ื ืŸ ื‘ืชืจ ื“ืขืชื™ื” ื•ื”ื ืชื ื™ื ื›ืฉืžืฉื‘ื™ืขื™ืŸ ืื•ืชื• ืื•ืžืจื™ื ืœื• ื”ื•ื™ ื™ื•ื“ืข ืฉืœื ืขืœ ื“ืขืชืš ืื ื• ืžืฉื‘ื™ืขื™ืŸ ืื•ืชืš ืืœื ืขืœ ื“ืขืชื ื• ื•ืขืœ ื“ืขืช ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืžืื™ ื˜ืขืžื ืœืื• ืžืฉื•ื ื“ืืžืจื™ื ืŸ ื“ืœืžื ืื™ืกืงื•ื ื“ืจื™ ื™ื”ื™ื‘ ืœื™ื” ื•ืืกื™ืง ืœื”ื• ื–ื•ื–ื™ ื“ื›ื™ ืงื ืžืฉืชื‘ืข ืื“ืขืชื™ื” ื“ื™ื“ื™ื” ืงื ืžืฉืชื‘ืข

And if you would say that we follow his mouth, i.e., the generally accepted meaning of what one says, and we do not follow his understanding, i.e., his own private meaning, but isnโ€™t it taught otherwise in a baraita: When they administer an oath to him in court, the judges say to him: Know that it is not according to your own understanding that we administer this oath to you, but according to our understanding and according to the understanding of the court? What is the reason they say this? Is it not because we say: Perhaps he gave tokens [iskunderei] to his creditor but he calls them for himself: Dinars, so that when he takes the oath, it is according to his own understanding that he takes the oath. Since, in principle, it is possible for him to take an oath according to his private meaning of the words, the court insists that the oath it administers is to be understood according to the wordsโ€™ generally accepted meaning.

ืœื ื”ืชื ืžืฉื•ื ืงื ื™ื ื“ืจื‘ื

Rav Ashi replies: No, the reason the court admonishes the oath taker is not that the oath can be interpreted according to a private meaning. There, when the court administers an oath, they explain that it is according to their meaning due to deceptions like that of the reed in Ravaโ€™s court. In that incident, someone handed his creditor a hollow reed, which he had secretly filled with coins, to hold for him, and proceeded to take an oath that he had given him the money owed to him, whereupon he took back the reed, as the creditor was unaware of its contents. The court admonishes oath takers so that they do not think that they have fulfilled their obligation to take an oath if they engage in such chicanery.

ืชื ืฉืžืข ื•ื›ืŸ ืžืฆื™ื ื• ื›ืฉื”ืฉื‘ื™ืข ืžืฉื” ืืช ื™ืฉืจืืœ ืืžืจ ืœื”ืŸ ื“ืขื• ืฉืœื ืขืœ ื“ืขืชื›ื ืื ื™ ืžืฉื‘ื™ืข ืืชื›ื ืืœื ืขืœ ื“ืขืช ื”ืžืงื•ื ื•ืขืœ ื“ืขืชื™ ื•ืืžืื™ ืœื™ืžื ืœื”ื• ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืžืื™ ื“ืืžืจ ืืœื•ื” ืœืื• ืžืฉื•ื ื“ืžืกืงื™ ืื“ืขืชื™ื™ื”ื• ืขื‘ื•ื“ื” ื–ืจื”

The Gemara suggests: Come and hear a baraita: And so we found that when Moses administered an oath to Israel that they would keep the Torah (see Deuteronomy 29:9โ€“12), he said to them: Know that I am not administering this oath according to your understanding but according to the understanding of the Omnipresent and according to my understanding. And why not let him simply say to them: Keep that which God said? Is it not that he insisted on admonishing them because he was concerned lest they direct the oath in their minds to idolatry, saying that they are taking an oath of loyalty to God but privately intending the oath to be for idolatry? This indicates that the content of an oath can be affected by an oath takerโ€™s private meaning.

ืœื ืžืฉื•ื ื“ืขื‘ื•ื“ื” ื–ืจื” ื ืžื™ ืื™ืงืจื™ ืืœื•ื” ื“ื›ืชื™ื‘ ืืœื”ื™ ื›ืกืฃ ื•ืืœื”ื™ ื–ื”ื‘

The Gemara rejects this: No, Moses explicitly indicated that the oath was according to Godโ€™s and his own understanding because idolatry is also referred to with the word: God, as it is written: โ€œYou shall not make with Me gods of silver or gods of goldโ€ (Exodus 20:20). Therefore, the generally accepted meaning of the oath is ambiguous.

ื•ืœื™ืžื ืœื”ื• ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืชื•ืจื” ื—ื“ื ืชื•ืจื” ื•ืœื™ืžื ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืฉืชื™ ืชื•ืจื•ืช ืชื•ืจืช ื—ื˜ืืช ืชื•ืจืช ืืฉื ืงื™ื™ืžื• ื›ืœ ื”ืชื•ืจื” ื›ื•ืœื” ืขื‘ื•ื“ื” ื–ืจื” ื“ืืžืจ ืžืจ ื—ืžื•ืจื” ืขื‘ื•ื“ื” ื–ืจื” ืฉื›ืœ ื”ื›ื•ืคืจ ื‘ื” ื›ืžื•ื“ื” ื‘ื›ืœ ื”ืชื•ืจื” ื›ื•ืœื”

The Gemara suggests: If private meanings do not affect the content of an oath, let Moses merely say to them: Keep the Torah. The Gemara explains: They could then have taken an oath to keep only one Torah, either the Written or the Oral Torah. The Gemara suggests: And let him say: Keep two Torahs. The Gemara explains: The word: Torah, also has a narrower meaning of a set of halakhic procedures. The Jewish people could then have limited the oath to the law of [torat] the sin-offering or the law of [torat] the guilt-offering. The Gemara suggests: Let Moses administer an oath to keep the entire Torah. The Gemara replies: That could have been understood as referring only to the prohibition of idolatry, as the Master says: The prohibition of idolatry is so severe that with regard to one who denies idol worship, it is as if he affirms the entire Torah.

ื•ืœื™ืžื ืœื”ื• ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืžืฆื•ื” ื—ื“ื ืžืฆื•ื” ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืžืฆื•ืช ืชืจืชื™ ื›ืœ ื”ืžืฆื•ืช ื›ื•ืœืŸ ืžืฆื•ืช ืฆื™ืฆื™ืช ื“ืืžืจ ืžืจ ืฉืงื•ืœื” ืžืฆื•ืช ืฆื™ืฆื™ืช ื›ื ื’ื“ ื›ืœ ื”ืžืฆื•ืช ื›ื•ืœืŸ

The Gemara suggests: And let him say to them: Keep the mitzva, i.e., that which you are commanded. The Gemara replies: That could have been understood as referring to only one mitzva. The Gemara suggests: Let him say: Keep mitzvot, i.e., in the plural. The Gemara replies: That could be understood as referring to only two mitzvot. The Gemara suggests: Let him say: All the mitzvot in their entirety. The Gemara replies: That could be understood as referring to the mitzva of ritual fringes, as the Master says: The mitzva of ritual fringes is equivalent to all the other mitzvot.

ื•ืœื™ืžื ืœื”ื• ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืฉืฉ ืžืื•ืช ื•ืฉืœืฉ ืขืฉืจื” ืžืฆื•ืช ื•ืœื˜ืขืžื™ืš ืœื™ืžื ืœื”ื• ืขืœ ื“ืขืชื™ ืขืœ ื“ืขืช ื”ืžืงื•ื ืœืžื” ืœื™

The Gemara suggests: And let him say to them: Keep 613 mitzvot. The Gemara replies: And according to your reasoning, let him simply say: Take the oath according to my understanding. Why do I need for him to say: According to the understanding of the Omnipresent?

ืืœื ื›ื™ ื”ื™ื›ื™ ื“ืœื ืชื”ื•ื™ ื”ืคืจื” ืœืฉื‘ื•ืขืชื™ื™ื”ื•

Rather, Moses administered the oath in this manner so that there would not be any possibility of the nullification of their oath. An oath taken with public consent cannot be dissolved. In this case, Moses and God constitute the public that gives its consent to the oath administered to the people. This was the reason for Mosesโ€™ insistence that the oath was taken according to his and Godโ€™s awareness; it was not because there was a possibility that the people could take the oath according to a private meaning.

ื•ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ื ื—ืฉ ื›ืงื•ืจืช ื‘ื™ืช ื”ื‘ื“ ื•ืœื ื•ื”ื ื”ื”ื•ื ื“ื”ื•ื” ื‘ืฉื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืจ ืžืœื›ื ื”ื•ื” ื—ื“ ื“ืื—ื–ื™ืง ืชืœื™ืกืจ ืื•ืจื•ื•ืชื ืชื™ื‘ื ื

ยง The mishna teaches with regard to an oath about a matter that is impossible, e.g., If I did not see a camel flying through the air, or: If I did not see a snake as large as the beam of the olive press. The Gemara asks: And are there no snakes that large? But wasnโ€™t there a certain snake during the years of the reign of King Shapur, one snake that could contain, i.e., swallow, thirteen stables of straw?

ืืžืจ ืฉืžื•ืืœ ื‘ื˜ืจื•ืฃ ื›ื•ืœื”ื• ื ืžื™ ืžื™ื˜ืจืฃ ื˜ืจื™ืคื™ืŸ ื‘ืฉื’ื‘ื• ื˜ืจื•ืฃ

Shmuel said: The size of the snake is not the subject of the analogy. The oath is referring to a snake that was flat [taruf ] like the beam of an olive press. The Gemara asks: Arenโ€™t they all flat? The Gemara explains: Snakesโ€™ undersides are flat. This oath is referring to a snake whose back is flat.

ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืื•ื›ืœ ื›ื›ืจ ื–ื• ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืœื ืื•ื›ืœื ื” ื›ื•ืณ ื”ืฉืชื ืžืฉื•ื ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™ ืžื™ื—ื™ื™ื‘ ืžืฉื•ื ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื ืœื ืžื™ื—ื™ื™ื‘ ื”ืจื™ ื™ืฆืชื” ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืœืฉื•ื

ยง The mishna teaches: If one said: On my oath I will eat this loaf, and later said: On my oath I will not eat it, the first oath is an oath on an utterance, and the second is an oath taken in vain. If he ate the loaf, he violated the prohibition against taking an oath in vain. If he did not eat it, he violated the prohibition against breaking an oath on an utterance. The Gemara asks: Now, if he did not eat it, he is liable because he violated his oath on an utterance. Is he not also liable for an oath taken in vain? An oath was issued in vain when he took the oath not to eat the loaf, as this required a violation of the oath he had taken to eat it.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ื™ ื™ืจืžื™ื” ืชื ื™ ืืฃ ืขืœ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™

Rabbi Yirmeya said: Teach the mishna with this emendation: If he did not eat it, he also violated the prohibition against breaking an oath on an utterance.

ืžืชื ื™ืณ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™ ื ื•ื”ื’ืช ื‘ืื ืฉื™ื ื•ื‘ื ืฉื™ื ื‘ืงืจื•ื‘ื™ื ื•ื‘ืจื—ื•ืงื™ื ื‘ื›ืฉืจื™ืŸ ื•ื‘ืคืกื•ืœื™ืŸ ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉืœื ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืขืฆืžื• ื•ื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืขืœ ื–ื“ื•ื ื” ืžื›ื•ืช ื•ืขืœ ืฉื’ื’ืชื” ืงืจื‘ืŸ ืขื•ืœื” ื•ื™ื•ืจื“

MISHNA: As opposed to the halakhot of an oath of testimony, which will be discussed in the following chapter, the halakhot of an oath on an utterance apply to men and to women, to relatives and to non-relatives, to those who are fit to testify and to those who are disqualified, whether the oath is taken in the presence of a court or not in the presence of a court, i.e., when one takes an oath on his own, at his own initiative. And for violating an oath intentionally one is liable to receive lashes, and for doing so unwittingly he is liable to bring a sliding-scale offering.

ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื ื ื•ื”ื’ืช ื‘ืื ืฉื™ื ื•ื‘ื ืฉื™ื ื‘ืจื—ื•ืงื™ื ื•ื‘ืงืจื•ื‘ื™ื ื‘ื›ืฉืจื™ืŸ ื•ื‘ืคืกื•ืœื™ืŸ ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉืœื ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื•ืžืคื™ ืขืฆืžื• ื•ื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืขืœ ื–ื“ื•ื ื” ืžื›ื•ืช ื•ืขืœ ืฉื’ื’ืชื” ืคื˜ื•ืจ

Liability for an oath taken in vain applies to men and to women, to relatives and to non-relatives, to those who are fit to bear witness and to those who are disqualified, whether the oath is taken in the presence of a court or not in the presence of a court, and also when one takes an oath on his own. And for violating an oath intentionally one is liable to receive lashes, and for doing so unwittingly he is exempt.

ืื—ืช ื–ื• ื•ืื—ืช ื–ื• ื”ืžื•ืฉื‘ืข ืžืคื™ ืื—ืจื™ื ื—ื™ื™ื‘ ืื ืœื ืื›ืœืชื™ ื”ื™ื•ื ื•ืœื ื”ื ื—ืชื™ ืชืคืœื™ืŸ ื”ื™ื•ื ืžืฉื‘ื™ืขืš ืื ื™ ื•ืืžืจ ืืžืŸ ื—ื™ื™ื‘

With regard to both this, an oath on an utterance, and that, an oath taken in vain, even if he is administered the oath by others, he is liable. For example, if one said: If I did not eat today, or: I did not don phylacteries today, and another said to him: I administer an oath to you that your statement is true, and the former said: Amen, he is liable if the statement was false.

ื’ืžืณ ืืžืจ ืฉืžื•ืืœ ื›ืœ ื”ืขื•ื ื” ืืžืŸ ืื—ืจ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ื›ืžื•ืฆื™ื ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ื‘ืคื™ื• ื“ืžื™ ื“ื›ืชื™ื‘ ื•ืืžืจื” ื”ืืฉื” ืืžืŸ ืืžืŸ

GEMARA: Shmuel says: Anyone who answers amen after being administered an oath is like one who expresses an oath with his own mouth, as it is written in the context of the oath administered to a sota, a woman suspected by her husband of having been unfaithful: โ€œAnd the woman shall say: Amen, amenโ€ (Numbers 5:22).

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ืคืคื ืžืฉืžื™ื” ื“ืจื‘ื ืžืชื ื™ืชื™ืŸ ื•ื‘ืจื™ื™ืชื ื ืžื™ ื“ื™ืงื ื“ืงืชื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื”ืขื“ื•ืช ื ื•ื”ื’ืช ื‘ืื ืฉื™ื ื•ืœื ื‘ื ืฉื™ื ื‘ืจื—ื•ืงื™ื ื•ืœื ื‘ืงืจื•ื‘ื™ื ื‘ื›ืฉืจื™ืŸ ื•ืœื ื‘ืคืกื•ืœื™ืŸ ื•ืื™ื ื” ื ื•ื”ื’ืช ืืœื ื‘ืจืื•ื™ืŸ ืœื”ืขื™ื“ ื•ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉืœื ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืขืฆืžื• ื•ืžืคื™ ืื—ืจื™ื ืื™ื ืŸ ื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืขื“ ืฉื™ื›ืคืจื• ื‘ื”ืŸ ื‘ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื“ื‘ืจื™ ืจื‘ื™ ืžืื™ืจ

Rav Pappa said in the name of Rava: An inference from the mishna and a baraita also support this when they are read precisely, as it is taught in the mishna (30a): The oath of testimony is practiced with regard to men but not with regard to women; with regard to non-relatives of the litigants, but not with regard to relatives; with regard to those fit to testify but not with regard to those unfit to testify due to a transgression that they performed. And the oath of testimony is practiced only with regard to those fit to testify. And this oath applies both in the presence of a court and not in the presence of a court, i.e., when the witness takes the oath on his own that he has no knowledge of the matter. But if an oath is administered to the witnesses by others, they are not liable until they deny knowledge of the matter in court and take an oath to that effect; this is the statement of Rabbi Meir.

ื•ืชื ื™ื ื‘ื‘ืจื™ื™ืชื ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื”ืขื“ื•ืช ื›ื™ืฆื“ ืืžืจ ืœืขื“ื™ื ื‘ื•ืื• ื•ื”ืขื™ื“ื•ื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืื™ืŸ ืื ื• ื™ื•ื“ืขื™ืŸ ืœืš ืขื“ื•ืช ืื• ืฉืืžืจื• ืื™ืŸ ืื ื• ื™ื•ื“ืขื™ืŸ ืœืš ืขื“ื•ืช ืžืฉื‘ื™ืข ืื ื™ ืขืœื™ื›ื ื•ืืžืจื• (ืœื•) ืืžืŸ ื‘ื™ืŸ ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื‘ื™ืŸ ืฉืœื ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื‘ื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืขืฆืžื• ื‘ื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืื—ืจื™ื ื›ื™ื•ืŸ ืฉื›ืคืจื• ื‘ื”ื ื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ื“ื‘ืจื™ ืจื‘ื™ ืžืื™ืจ

Before stating the inference from the mishna, Rav Pappa cites the baraita. And it is taught in a baraita: With regard to an oath of testimony, how is one liable to bring a sliding-scale offering? A person said to witnesses: Come and testify for me. They replied: On our oath we do not know any testimony that concerns you, i.e., we have no knowledge of the matter. Alternatively, they said: We do not know any testimony that concerns you, and he said to them: I administer an oath to you, and they said to him: Amen. Whether this oath was taken in the presence of a court or whether it was not in the presence of a court, whether it was taken by each witness by himself or whether it was administered by others, once they denied knowing testimony that they in fact knew, they are liable; this is the statement of Rabbi Meir.

ืงืฉื™ื™ืŸ ืื”ื“ื“ื™ ืืœื ืœืื• ืฉืžืข ืžื™ื ื” ื”ื ื“ืขื ื” ืืžืŸ ื”ื ื“ืœื ืขื ื” ืืžืŸ ืฉืžืข ืžื™ื ื”

Rav Pappa asks: Arenโ€™t the mishna and the baraita difficult, as they contradict each other? According to the mishna one is liable when the oath is administered by others only if it takes place in the presence of a court, while according to the baraita one is liable even not in the presence of a court. Rather, isnโ€™t it correct to conclude from it that this statement in the baraita, where he is liable even not in the presence of a court, is referring to one who answered amen to the administered oath. That statement in the mishna is referring to one who did not answer amen and is therefore liable only in the presence of a court? The Gemara affirms: Conclude from it that it is so.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ื™ื ื ืžืฉืžื™ื” ื“ืจื‘ื ืžืชื ื™ืชื™ืŸ ื“ื”ื›ื ื ืžื™ ื“ื™ืงื ื“ืงื ืชื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™ ื ื•ื”ื’ืช ื‘ืื ืฉื™ื ื•ื‘ื ืฉื™ื ื‘ืจื—ื•ืงื™ื ื•ื‘ืงืจื•ื‘ื™ื ื‘ื›ืฉืจื™ืŸ ื•ื‘ืคืกื•ืœื™ืŸ ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉืœื ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืขืฆืžื• ืื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืื—ืจื™ื ืœื ื•ืงืชื ื™ ืกื™ืคื ื–ื” ื•ื–ื” ืžื•ืฉื‘ืข ืžืคื™ ืื—ืจื™ื ื—ื™ื™ื‘

Ravina said in the name of Rava: The mishna that is here (29b) also may be read precisely to support this point. As it is taught in the mishna: The halakhot of an oath on an utterance apply to men and to women, to relatives and to non-relatives, to those who are fit to testify and to those who are disqualified, whether the oath is taken in the presence of a court or not in the presence of a court, i.e., when one takes an oath on his own, at his own initiative. Ravina states his inference: On his own, yes, but administered by others, no. And it is taught in the last clause of the mishna: With regard to this, an oath on an utterance, and that, an oath taken in vain, even if he is administered the oath by others, he is liable.

ืงืฉื™ื™ืŸ ืื”ื“ื“ื™ ืืœื ืœืื• ืฉืžืข ืžื™ื ื” ื”ื ื“ืขื ื” ืืžืŸ ื”ื ื“ืœื ืขื ื” ืืžืŸ

These statements in the mishna are difficult, as they contradict each other. Rather, isnโ€™t it correct to conclude from it that this latter clause of the mishna is referring to one who answered amen to the administered oath. That former clause is referring to one who did not answer amen and is therefore liable only in the presence of a court.

ื•ืืœื ืฉืžื•ืืœ ืžืื™ ืงื ืžืฉืžืข ืœืŸ ื“ื•ืงื™ื ื“ืžืชื ื™ืชื™ืŸ ืงื ืžืฉืžืข ืœืŸ

The Gemara asks: But since his statement can be derived from tannaitic sources, what is Shmuel teaching us? The Gemara answers: He is teaching us the precise reading of the mishna. Since that halakha is not stated explicitly in the mishna, Shmuel saw fit to state it.

ื”ื“ืจืŸ ืขืœื™ืš ืฉื‘ื•ืขื•ืช ืฉืชื™ื

 

  • This month's learning is sponsored by Joanna Rom and Steven Goldberg in loving memory of Steve's mother Shirley "Nana" Goldberg (Sura Tema bat Chaim v'Hanka)

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Shevuot 29

The William Davidson Talmud | Powered by Sefaria

Shevuot 29

ื•ืื›ืœ ืชืื ื™ื ื•ื”ืคืจื™ืฉ ืงืจื‘ืŸ ื•ืื—ืจ ื›ืš ืื›ืœ ืขื ื‘ื™ื ืœื—ื•ื“ื™ื™ื”ื• ื”ื•ื™ื ืœื”ื• ืขื ื‘ื™ื ื—ืฆื™ ืฉื™ืขื•ืจ ื•ืื—ืฆื™ ืฉื™ืขื•ืจ ืœื ืžื™ื—ื™ื™ื‘ ืงืจื‘ืŸ ื”ื›ื ื ืžื™ ื›ื’ื•ืŸ ื“ืืžืจ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืœื ืื•ื›ืœ ืขืฉืจ ื•ื—ื–ืจ ื•ืืžืจ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืœื ืื•ื›ืœ ืชืฉืข ื•ืื›ืœ ืชืฉืข ื•ื”ืคืจื™ืฉ ืงืจื‘ืŸ ื•ืื—ืจ ื›ืš ืื›ืœ ืขืฉื™ืจื™ืช ื”ื•ื™ื ืœื” ืขืฉื™ืจื™ืช ื—ืฆื™ ืฉื™ืขื•ืจ ื•ืื—ืฆื™ ืฉื™ืขื•ืจ ืœื ืžื™ื—ื™ื™ื‘

and he unwittingly ate figs and set aside an offering for breaking the second oath, and afterward he unwittingly ate grapes alone, he is exempt from liability for breaking the first oath. The grapes are tantamount to a half-measure of his first oath, which was not to eat figs and grapes together, and one is not liable to bring an offering for a half-measure. Here also, where he said: On my oath I will not eat ten, and then said: On my oath I will not eat nine, and he ate nine and set aside an offering for breaking his second oath, and later he ate the tenth, this tenth is tantamount to a half-measure of his first oath, and one is not liable to bring an offering for a half-measure.

ืžืชื ื™ืณ ืื™ื–ื• ื”ื™ื ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื ื ืฉื‘ืข ืœืฉื ื•ืช ืืช ื”ื™ื“ื•ืข ืœืื“ื ืืžืจ ืขืœ ื”ืขืžื•ื“ ืฉืœ ืื‘ืŸ ืฉื”ื•ื ืฉืœ ื–ื”ื‘ ื•ืขืœ ื”ืื™ืฉ ืฉื”ื•ื ืืฉื” ื•ืขืœ ื”ืืฉื” ืฉื”ื™ื ืื™ืฉ

MISHNA: Which oath is an oath taken in vain, mentioned in the previous mishna (27b)? It is when one takes an oath to deny that which is known to people to be true, for example, one says about a stone column that it is made of gold, or about a man that he is a woman, or about a woman that she is a man.

ื ืฉื‘ืข ืขืœ ื“ื‘ืจ ืฉืื™ ืืคืฉืจ ืœื• ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ื’ืžืœ ืฉืคื•ืจื— ื‘ืื•ื™ืจ ื•ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ื ื—ืฉ ื›ืงื•ืจืช ื‘ื™ืช ื”ื‘ื“

Another type of oath taken in vain is when one takes an oath about a matter that is impossible, e.g., if he says: If I did not see a camel flying through the air, or: If I did not see a snake as large as the beam of the olive press.

ืืžืจ ืœืขื“ื™ื ื‘ื•ืื• ื•ื”ืขื™ื“ื•ื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืœื ื ืขื™ื“ืš ื ืฉื‘ืข ืœื‘ื˜ืœ ืืช ื”ืžืฆื•ื” ืฉืœื ืœืขืฉื•ืช ืกื•ื›ื” ื•ืฉืœื ืœื™ื˜ื•ืœ ืœื•ืœื‘ ื•ืฉืœื ืœื”ื ื™ื— ืชืคื™ืœื™ืŸ ื–ื• ื”ื™ื ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื ืฉื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืขืœ ื–ื“ื•ื ื” ืžื›ื•ืช ื•ืขืœ ืฉื’ื’ืชื” ืคื˜ื•ืจ

In the case of one who said to witnesses: Come and testify for me, and they replied: On our oath we will not testify for you, that is an oath taken in vain, because it involves taking an oath to refrain from performing a mitzva. Other examples of this include an oath not to build a sukka, or not to take a lulav, or not to don phylacteries. This type of oath is an oath taken in vain, for which one is liable to receive lashes if he takes the oath intentionally, and for which he is exempt if he takes it unwittingly.

ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืื•ื›ืœ ื›ื›ืจ ื–ื• ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืœื ืื•ื›ืœื ื” ื”ืจืืฉื•ื ื” ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™ ื•ื”ืฉื ื™ื” ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื

If one said: On my oath I will eat this loaf, and later said: On my oath I will not eat it, the first oath is an oath on an utterance, and the second is an oath taken in vain, as he took an oath to perform an action that would violate his previous oath.

ืื›ืœื” ืขื‘ืจ ืขืœ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื ืœื ืื›ืœื” ืขื‘ืจ ืขืœ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™

If he ate it, he violated the prohibition against taking an oath in vain. If he did not eat it, he violated the prohibition against breaking an oath on an utterance.

ื’ืžืณ ืืžืจ ืขื•ืœื ื•ื”ื•ื ืฉื ื™ื›ืจ ืœืฉืœืฉื” ื‘ื ื™ ืื“ื

GEMARA: With regard to an oath taken in vain that denies that which is known to people, Ulla says: It is considered known to people when it is a fact that is known to three people.

ื ืฉื‘ืข ืขืœ ื“ื‘ืจ ืฉืื™ ืืคืฉืจ ืœื• ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ื’ืžืœ ืคื•ืจื— ื‘ืื•ื™ืจืณ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืจืื™ืชื™ ืœื ืงืืžืจ ืžืื™ ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ืื‘ื™ื™ ืืžืจ ืชื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืจืื™ืชื™ ืจื‘ื ืืžืจ ื‘ืื•ืžืจ ื™ืืกืจื• ื›ืœ ืคื™ืจื•ืช ืฉื‘ืขื•ืœื ืขืœื™ ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ื’ืžืœ ืคื•ืจื— ื‘ืื•ื™ืจ

ยง The mishna describes an oath taken in vain where one takes an oath about a matter that is impossible, e.g., where one says: If I did not see a camel flying through the air. The Gemara points out: The tanna of the mishna did not say: On my oath I saw. What is the meaning of: If I did not see? Abaye said: Emend the language of the mishna and teach: On my oath I saw. Rava said: This is part of a larger statement where one says: Let all the produce in the world be prohibited for me if I did not see a camel flying through the air.

ืืžืจ ืœื™ื” ืจื‘ื™ื ื ืœืจื‘ ืืฉื™ ื•ื“ืœืžื ื”ืื™ ื’ื‘ืจื ืฆื™ืคื•ืจื ืจื‘ื ื—ื–ื™ ื•ืืกื™ืง ืœื™ื” ืฉืžื ื’ืžืœื ื•ื›ื™ ืงื ืžืฉืชื‘ืข ืื“ืขืชื™ื” ื“ื™ื“ื™ื” ืื™ืฉืชื‘ืข

With regard to the oath: If I did not see a camel flying through the air, Ravina said to Rav Ashi: Perhaps this man who took this oath saw a great bird and named it for himself: Camel, and when he took the oath, he took the oath according to his own understanding.

ื•ื›ื™ ืชื™ืžื ื‘ืชืจ ืคื•ืžื™ื” ืื–ืœื™ื ืŸ ื•ืœื ืื–ืœื™ื ืŸ ื‘ืชืจ ื“ืขืชื™ื” ื•ื”ื ืชื ื™ื ื›ืฉืžืฉื‘ื™ืขื™ืŸ ืื•ืชื• ืื•ืžืจื™ื ืœื• ื”ื•ื™ ื™ื•ื“ืข ืฉืœื ืขืœ ื“ืขืชืš ืื ื• ืžืฉื‘ื™ืขื™ืŸ ืื•ืชืš ืืœื ืขืœ ื“ืขืชื ื• ื•ืขืœ ื“ืขืช ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืžืื™ ื˜ืขืžื ืœืื• ืžืฉื•ื ื“ืืžืจื™ื ืŸ ื“ืœืžื ืื™ืกืงื•ื ื“ืจื™ ื™ื”ื™ื‘ ืœื™ื” ื•ืืกื™ืง ืœื”ื• ื–ื•ื–ื™ ื“ื›ื™ ืงื ืžืฉืชื‘ืข ืื“ืขืชื™ื” ื“ื™ื“ื™ื” ืงื ืžืฉืชื‘ืข

And if you would say that we follow his mouth, i.e., the generally accepted meaning of what one says, and we do not follow his understanding, i.e., his own private meaning, but isnโ€™t it taught otherwise in a baraita: When they administer an oath to him in court, the judges say to him: Know that it is not according to your own understanding that we administer this oath to you, but according to our understanding and according to the understanding of the court? What is the reason they say this? Is it not because we say: Perhaps he gave tokens [iskunderei] to his creditor but he calls them for himself: Dinars, so that when he takes the oath, it is according to his own understanding that he takes the oath. Since, in principle, it is possible for him to take an oath according to his private meaning of the words, the court insists that the oath it administers is to be understood according to the wordsโ€™ generally accepted meaning.

ืœื ื”ืชื ืžืฉื•ื ืงื ื™ื ื“ืจื‘ื

Rav Ashi replies: No, the reason the court admonishes the oath taker is not that the oath can be interpreted according to a private meaning. There, when the court administers an oath, they explain that it is according to their meaning due to deceptions like that of the reed in Ravaโ€™s court. In that incident, someone handed his creditor a hollow reed, which he had secretly filled with coins, to hold for him, and proceeded to take an oath that he had given him the money owed to him, whereupon he took back the reed, as the creditor was unaware of its contents. The court admonishes oath takers so that they do not think that they have fulfilled their obligation to take an oath if they engage in such chicanery.

ืชื ืฉืžืข ื•ื›ืŸ ืžืฆื™ื ื• ื›ืฉื”ืฉื‘ื™ืข ืžืฉื” ืืช ื™ืฉืจืืœ ืืžืจ ืœื”ืŸ ื“ืขื• ืฉืœื ืขืœ ื“ืขืชื›ื ืื ื™ ืžืฉื‘ื™ืข ืืชื›ื ืืœื ืขืœ ื“ืขืช ื”ืžืงื•ื ื•ืขืœ ื“ืขืชื™ ื•ืืžืื™ ืœื™ืžื ืœื”ื• ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืžืื™ ื“ืืžืจ ืืœื•ื” ืœืื• ืžืฉื•ื ื“ืžืกืงื™ ืื“ืขืชื™ื™ื”ื• ืขื‘ื•ื“ื” ื–ืจื”

The Gemara suggests: Come and hear a baraita: And so we found that when Moses administered an oath to Israel that they would keep the Torah (see Deuteronomy 29:9โ€“12), he said to them: Know that I am not administering this oath according to your understanding but according to the understanding of the Omnipresent and according to my understanding. And why not let him simply say to them: Keep that which God said? Is it not that he insisted on admonishing them because he was concerned lest they direct the oath in their minds to idolatry, saying that they are taking an oath of loyalty to God but privately intending the oath to be for idolatry? This indicates that the content of an oath can be affected by an oath takerโ€™s private meaning.

ืœื ืžืฉื•ื ื“ืขื‘ื•ื“ื” ื–ืจื” ื ืžื™ ืื™ืงืจื™ ืืœื•ื” ื“ื›ืชื™ื‘ ืืœื”ื™ ื›ืกืฃ ื•ืืœื”ื™ ื–ื”ื‘

The Gemara rejects this: No, Moses explicitly indicated that the oath was according to Godโ€™s and his own understanding because idolatry is also referred to with the word: God, as it is written: โ€œYou shall not make with Me gods of silver or gods of goldโ€ (Exodus 20:20). Therefore, the generally accepted meaning of the oath is ambiguous.

ื•ืœื™ืžื ืœื”ื• ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืชื•ืจื” ื—ื“ื ืชื•ืจื” ื•ืœื™ืžื ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืฉืชื™ ืชื•ืจื•ืช ืชื•ืจืช ื—ื˜ืืช ืชื•ืจืช ืืฉื ืงื™ื™ืžื• ื›ืœ ื”ืชื•ืจื” ื›ื•ืœื” ืขื‘ื•ื“ื” ื–ืจื” ื“ืืžืจ ืžืจ ื—ืžื•ืจื” ืขื‘ื•ื“ื” ื–ืจื” ืฉื›ืœ ื”ื›ื•ืคืจ ื‘ื” ื›ืžื•ื“ื” ื‘ื›ืœ ื”ืชื•ืจื” ื›ื•ืœื”

The Gemara suggests: If private meanings do not affect the content of an oath, let Moses merely say to them: Keep the Torah. The Gemara explains: They could then have taken an oath to keep only one Torah, either the Written or the Oral Torah. The Gemara suggests: And let him say: Keep two Torahs. The Gemara explains: The word: Torah, also has a narrower meaning of a set of halakhic procedures. The Jewish people could then have limited the oath to the law of [torat] the sin-offering or the law of [torat] the guilt-offering. The Gemara suggests: Let Moses administer an oath to keep the entire Torah. The Gemara replies: That could have been understood as referring only to the prohibition of idolatry, as the Master says: The prohibition of idolatry is so severe that with regard to one who denies idol worship, it is as if he affirms the entire Torah.

ื•ืœื™ืžื ืœื”ื• ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืžืฆื•ื” ื—ื“ื ืžืฆื•ื” ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืžืฆื•ืช ืชืจืชื™ ื›ืœ ื”ืžืฆื•ืช ื›ื•ืœืŸ ืžืฆื•ืช ืฆื™ืฆื™ืช ื“ืืžืจ ืžืจ ืฉืงื•ืœื” ืžืฆื•ืช ืฆื™ืฆื™ืช ื›ื ื’ื“ ื›ืœ ื”ืžืฆื•ืช ื›ื•ืœืŸ

The Gemara suggests: And let him say to them: Keep the mitzva, i.e., that which you are commanded. The Gemara replies: That could have been understood as referring to only one mitzva. The Gemara suggests: Let him say: Keep mitzvot, i.e., in the plural. The Gemara replies: That could be understood as referring to only two mitzvot. The Gemara suggests: Let him say: All the mitzvot in their entirety. The Gemara replies: That could be understood as referring to the mitzva of ritual fringes, as the Master says: The mitzva of ritual fringes is equivalent to all the other mitzvot.

ื•ืœื™ืžื ืœื”ื• ืงื™ื™ืžื• ืฉืฉ ืžืื•ืช ื•ืฉืœืฉ ืขืฉืจื” ืžืฆื•ืช ื•ืœื˜ืขืžื™ืš ืœื™ืžื ืœื”ื• ืขืœ ื“ืขืชื™ ืขืœ ื“ืขืช ื”ืžืงื•ื ืœืžื” ืœื™

The Gemara suggests: And let him say to them: Keep 613 mitzvot. The Gemara replies: And according to your reasoning, let him simply say: Take the oath according to my understanding. Why do I need for him to say: According to the understanding of the Omnipresent?

ืืœื ื›ื™ ื”ื™ื›ื™ ื“ืœื ืชื”ื•ื™ ื”ืคืจื” ืœืฉื‘ื•ืขืชื™ื™ื”ื•

Rather, Moses administered the oath in this manner so that there would not be any possibility of the nullification of their oath. An oath taken with public consent cannot be dissolved. In this case, Moses and God constitute the public that gives its consent to the oath administered to the people. This was the reason for Mosesโ€™ insistence that the oath was taken according to his and Godโ€™s awareness; it was not because there was a possibility that the people could take the oath according to a private meaning.

ื•ืื ืœื ืจืื™ืชื™ ื ื—ืฉ ื›ืงื•ืจืช ื‘ื™ืช ื”ื‘ื“ ื•ืœื ื•ื”ื ื”ื”ื•ื ื“ื”ื•ื” ื‘ืฉื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืจ ืžืœื›ื ื”ื•ื” ื—ื“ ื“ืื—ื–ื™ืง ืชืœื™ืกืจ ืื•ืจื•ื•ืชื ืชื™ื‘ื ื

ยง The mishna teaches with regard to an oath about a matter that is impossible, e.g., If I did not see a camel flying through the air, or: If I did not see a snake as large as the beam of the olive press. The Gemara asks: And are there no snakes that large? But wasnโ€™t there a certain snake during the years of the reign of King Shapur, one snake that could contain, i.e., swallow, thirteen stables of straw?

ืืžืจ ืฉืžื•ืืœ ื‘ื˜ืจื•ืฃ ื›ื•ืœื”ื• ื ืžื™ ืžื™ื˜ืจืฃ ื˜ืจื™ืคื™ืŸ ื‘ืฉื’ื‘ื• ื˜ืจื•ืฃ

Shmuel said: The size of the snake is not the subject of the analogy. The oath is referring to a snake that was flat [taruf ] like the beam of an olive press. The Gemara asks: Arenโ€™t they all flat? The Gemara explains: Snakesโ€™ undersides are flat. This oath is referring to a snake whose back is flat.

ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืื•ื›ืœ ื›ื›ืจ ื–ื• ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืœื ืื•ื›ืœื ื” ื›ื•ืณ ื”ืฉืชื ืžืฉื•ื ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™ ืžื™ื—ื™ื™ื‘ ืžืฉื•ื ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื ืœื ืžื™ื—ื™ื™ื‘ ื”ืจื™ ื™ืฆืชื” ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืœืฉื•ื

ยง The mishna teaches: If one said: On my oath I will eat this loaf, and later said: On my oath I will not eat it, the first oath is an oath on an utterance, and the second is an oath taken in vain. If he ate the loaf, he violated the prohibition against taking an oath in vain. If he did not eat it, he violated the prohibition against breaking an oath on an utterance. The Gemara asks: Now, if he did not eat it, he is liable because he violated his oath on an utterance. Is he not also liable for an oath taken in vain? An oath was issued in vain when he took the oath not to eat the loaf, as this required a violation of the oath he had taken to eat it.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ื™ ื™ืจืžื™ื” ืชื ื™ ืืฃ ืขืœ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™

Rabbi Yirmeya said: Teach the mishna with this emendation: If he did not eat it, he also violated the prohibition against breaking an oath on an utterance.

ืžืชื ื™ืณ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™ ื ื•ื”ื’ืช ื‘ืื ืฉื™ื ื•ื‘ื ืฉื™ื ื‘ืงืจื•ื‘ื™ื ื•ื‘ืจื—ื•ืงื™ื ื‘ื›ืฉืจื™ืŸ ื•ื‘ืคืกื•ืœื™ืŸ ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉืœื ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืขืฆืžื• ื•ื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืขืœ ื–ื“ื•ื ื” ืžื›ื•ืช ื•ืขืœ ืฉื’ื’ืชื” ืงืจื‘ืŸ ืขื•ืœื” ื•ื™ื•ืจื“

MISHNA: As opposed to the halakhot of an oath of testimony, which will be discussed in the following chapter, the halakhot of an oath on an utterance apply to men and to women, to relatives and to non-relatives, to those who are fit to testify and to those who are disqualified, whether the oath is taken in the presence of a court or not in the presence of a court, i.e., when one takes an oath on his own, at his own initiative. And for violating an oath intentionally one is liable to receive lashes, and for doing so unwittingly he is liable to bring a sliding-scale offering.

ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ืฉื•ื ื ื•ื”ื’ืช ื‘ืื ืฉื™ื ื•ื‘ื ืฉื™ื ื‘ืจื—ื•ืงื™ื ื•ื‘ืงืจื•ื‘ื™ื ื‘ื›ืฉืจื™ืŸ ื•ื‘ืคืกื•ืœื™ืŸ ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉืœื ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื•ืžืคื™ ืขืฆืžื• ื•ื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืขืœ ื–ื“ื•ื ื” ืžื›ื•ืช ื•ืขืœ ืฉื’ื’ืชื” ืคื˜ื•ืจ

Liability for an oath taken in vain applies to men and to women, to relatives and to non-relatives, to those who are fit to bear witness and to those who are disqualified, whether the oath is taken in the presence of a court or not in the presence of a court, and also when one takes an oath on his own. And for violating an oath intentionally one is liable to receive lashes, and for doing so unwittingly he is exempt.

ืื—ืช ื–ื• ื•ืื—ืช ื–ื• ื”ืžื•ืฉื‘ืข ืžืคื™ ืื—ืจื™ื ื—ื™ื™ื‘ ืื ืœื ืื›ืœืชื™ ื”ื™ื•ื ื•ืœื ื”ื ื—ืชื™ ืชืคืœื™ืŸ ื”ื™ื•ื ืžืฉื‘ื™ืขืš ืื ื™ ื•ืืžืจ ืืžืŸ ื—ื™ื™ื‘

With regard to both this, an oath on an utterance, and that, an oath taken in vain, even if he is administered the oath by others, he is liable. For example, if one said: If I did not eat today, or: I did not don phylacteries today, and another said to him: I administer an oath to you that your statement is true, and the former said: Amen, he is liable if the statement was false.

ื’ืžืณ ืืžืจ ืฉืžื•ืืœ ื›ืœ ื”ืขื•ื ื” ืืžืŸ ืื—ืจ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ื›ืžื•ืฆื™ื ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ื‘ืคื™ื• ื“ืžื™ ื“ื›ืชื™ื‘ ื•ืืžืจื” ื”ืืฉื” ืืžืŸ ืืžืŸ

GEMARA: Shmuel says: Anyone who answers amen after being administered an oath is like one who expresses an oath with his own mouth, as it is written in the context of the oath administered to a sota, a woman suspected by her husband of having been unfaithful: โ€œAnd the woman shall say: Amen, amenโ€ (Numbers 5:22).

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ ืคืคื ืžืฉืžื™ื” ื“ืจื‘ื ืžืชื ื™ืชื™ืŸ ื•ื‘ืจื™ื™ืชื ื ืžื™ ื“ื™ืงื ื“ืงืชื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื”ืขื“ื•ืช ื ื•ื”ื’ืช ื‘ืื ืฉื™ื ื•ืœื ื‘ื ืฉื™ื ื‘ืจื—ื•ืงื™ื ื•ืœื ื‘ืงืจื•ื‘ื™ื ื‘ื›ืฉืจื™ืŸ ื•ืœื ื‘ืคืกื•ืœื™ืŸ ื•ืื™ื ื” ื ื•ื”ื’ืช ืืœื ื‘ืจืื•ื™ืŸ ืœื”ืขื™ื“ ื•ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉืœื ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืขืฆืžื• ื•ืžืคื™ ืื—ืจื™ื ืื™ื ืŸ ื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ืขื“ ืฉื™ื›ืคืจื• ื‘ื”ืŸ ื‘ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื“ื‘ืจื™ ืจื‘ื™ ืžืื™ืจ

Rav Pappa said in the name of Rava: An inference from the mishna and a baraita also support this when they are read precisely, as it is taught in the mishna (30a): The oath of testimony is practiced with regard to men but not with regard to women; with regard to non-relatives of the litigants, but not with regard to relatives; with regard to those fit to testify but not with regard to those unfit to testify due to a transgression that they performed. And the oath of testimony is practiced only with regard to those fit to testify. And this oath applies both in the presence of a court and not in the presence of a court, i.e., when the witness takes the oath on his own that he has no knowledge of the matter. But if an oath is administered to the witnesses by others, they are not liable until they deny knowledge of the matter in court and take an oath to that effect; this is the statement of Rabbi Meir.

ื•ืชื ื™ื ื‘ื‘ืจื™ื™ืชื ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื”ืขื“ื•ืช ื›ื™ืฆื“ ืืžืจ ืœืขื“ื™ื ื‘ื•ืื• ื•ื”ืขื™ื“ื•ื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืขื” ืฉืื™ืŸ ืื ื• ื™ื•ื“ืขื™ืŸ ืœืš ืขื“ื•ืช ืื• ืฉืืžืจื• ืื™ืŸ ืื ื• ื™ื•ื“ืขื™ืŸ ืœืš ืขื“ื•ืช ืžืฉื‘ื™ืข ืื ื™ ืขืœื™ื›ื ื•ืืžืจื• (ืœื•) ืืžืŸ ื‘ื™ืŸ ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื‘ื™ืŸ ืฉืœื ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื‘ื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืขืฆืžื• ื‘ื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืื—ืจื™ื ื›ื™ื•ืŸ ืฉื›ืคืจื• ื‘ื”ื ื—ื™ื™ื‘ื™ืŸ ื“ื‘ืจื™ ืจื‘ื™ ืžืื™ืจ

Before stating the inference from the mishna, Rav Pappa cites the baraita. And it is taught in a baraita: With regard to an oath of testimony, how is one liable to bring a sliding-scale offering? A person said to witnesses: Come and testify for me. They replied: On our oath we do not know any testimony that concerns you, i.e., we have no knowledge of the matter. Alternatively, they said: We do not know any testimony that concerns you, and he said to them: I administer an oath to you, and they said to him: Amen. Whether this oath was taken in the presence of a court or whether it was not in the presence of a court, whether it was taken by each witness by himself or whether it was administered by others, once they denied knowing testimony that they in fact knew, they are liable; this is the statement of Rabbi Meir.

ืงืฉื™ื™ืŸ ืื”ื“ื“ื™ ืืœื ืœืื• ืฉืžืข ืžื™ื ื” ื”ื ื“ืขื ื” ืืžืŸ ื”ื ื“ืœื ืขื ื” ืืžืŸ ืฉืžืข ืžื™ื ื”

Rav Pappa asks: Arenโ€™t the mishna and the baraita difficult, as they contradict each other? According to the mishna one is liable when the oath is administered by others only if it takes place in the presence of a court, while according to the baraita one is liable even not in the presence of a court. Rather, isnโ€™t it correct to conclude from it that this statement in the baraita, where he is liable even not in the presence of a court, is referring to one who answered amen to the administered oath. That statement in the mishna is referring to one who did not answer amen and is therefore liable only in the presence of a court? The Gemara affirms: Conclude from it that it is so.

ืืžืจ ืจื‘ื™ื ื ืžืฉืžื™ื” ื“ืจื‘ื ืžืชื ื™ืชื™ืŸ ื“ื”ื›ื ื ืžื™ ื“ื™ืงื ื“ืงื ืชื ื™ ืฉื‘ื•ืขืช ื‘ื™ื˜ื•ื™ ื ื•ื”ื’ืช ื‘ืื ืฉื™ื ื•ื‘ื ืฉื™ื ื‘ืจื—ื•ืงื™ื ื•ื‘ืงืจื•ื‘ื™ื ื‘ื›ืฉืจื™ืŸ ื•ื‘ืคืกื•ืœื™ืŸ ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ื•ืฉืœื ื‘ืคื ื™ ื‘ื™ืช ื“ื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืขืฆืžื• ืื™ืŸ ืžืคื™ ืื—ืจื™ื ืœื ื•ืงืชื ื™ ืกื™ืคื ื–ื” ื•ื–ื” ืžื•ืฉื‘ืข ืžืคื™ ืื—ืจื™ื ื—ื™ื™ื‘

Ravina said in the name of Rava: The mishna that is here (29b) also may be read precisely to support this point. As it is taught in the mishna: The halakhot of an oath on an utterance apply to men and to women, to relatives and to non-relatives, to those who are fit to testify and to those who are disqualified, whether the oath is taken in the presence of a court or not in the presence of a court, i.e., when one takes an oath on his own, at his own initiative. Ravina states his inference: On his own, yes, but administered by others, no. And it is taught in the last clause of the mishna: With regard to this, an oath on an utterance, and that, an oath taken in vain, even if he is administered the oath by others, he is liable.

ืงืฉื™ื™ืŸ ืื”ื“ื“ื™ ืืœื ืœืื• ืฉืžืข ืžื™ื ื” ื”ื ื“ืขื ื” ืืžืŸ ื”ื ื“ืœื ืขื ื” ืืžืŸ

These statements in the mishna are difficult, as they contradict each other. Rather, isnโ€™t it correct to conclude from it that this latter clause of the mishna is referring to one who answered amen to the administered oath. That former clause is referring to one who did not answer amen and is therefore liable only in the presence of a court.

ื•ืืœื ืฉืžื•ืืœ ืžืื™ ืงื ืžืฉืžืข ืœืŸ ื“ื•ืงื™ื ื“ืžืชื ื™ืชื™ืŸ ืงื ืžืฉืžืข ืœืŸ

The Gemara asks: But since his statement can be derived from tannaitic sources, what is Shmuel teaching us? The Gemara answers: He is teaching us the precise reading of the mishna. Since that halakha is not stated explicitly in the mishna, Shmuel saw fit to state it.

ื”ื“ืจืŸ ืขืœื™ืš ืฉื‘ื•ืขื•ืช ืฉืชื™ื

 

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