THOUGHTS ON THE DAILY DAF
brought to you by Kollel Iyun Hadaf of Har Nof
Rosh Kollel: Rav Mordecai Kornfeld
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1) "FORTY MINUS ONE"
QUESTION: The Mishnah says that the number of Melachos are "forty minus
one." Why did the Mishnah not simply say that there are "thirty-nine"
2) AN "AV MELACHAH"
(a) The TOSFOS YOM TOV suggests that since the maximum number of lashes
that a person can receive is called "forty minus one" (Makos 22a), the
Melachos are also called "forty minus one." (The Mishnah refers to lashes
as "forty minus one" and not "thirty-nine" because the Torah uses the word
"forty" to refer to them.)
(b) The son of the TOSFOS YOM TOV suggests an answer based on the Gemara
earlier (49b). The Gemara there says that the number of Melachos prohibited
on Shabbos is derived from the number of times that the word "Melachah"
appears in the Torah. The Gemara asked that the word "Melachah" actually
appears forty times, and the Gemara answered that one of them is not
counted. The Mishnah alludes to this by saying that there are "forty minus
(c) The TOSFOS YOM TOV suggests another answer. The Gemara says later (74b;
see RASHI there, DH v'Iy Chaytei) that one is Chayav for the Melachah of
Tofer (sewing) only if one ties a knot at the end of the stitching so that
it does not come out. Therefore, practically speaking, it is not possible
to transgress the Melachah of sewing without also transgressing the
Melachah of tying, in which case he has done 40 Melachos (all 39, plus an
extra one of tying in order to complete the Melachah of sewing). The
Mishnah alludes to this by saying that there are "forty minus one"
Melachos. (One might ask that it is indeed possible to limit one's
transgressions to 39, if one *first* sews a stitch, and *then* ties a knot
to hold the stitch in -- without tying any other knots. In that case one is
will be doing only 39 Melachos, and not 40! The Tosfos Yom Tov must mean
that the Melachos cannot be done *in the order of the Mishnah* unless one
does a total of 40 Melachos.)
(d) The MAYIM CHAYIM answers based on the Gemara (73b) which notes that the
Melachah of plowing that is mentioned in the Mishnah is done *after* the
Melachah of sowing. Since a person usually plows before sowing as well, the
Mishnah must be referring to a *second* plowing, which is done when the
soil is hard *after* the planting. If so, in doing all of the Melachos
mentioned in the Mishnah, one does 40 Melachos (that is, two plowings, one
before sowing and one afterwards). The Mishnah alludes to this by saying
that there are "forty minus one" Melachos.
OPINIONS: What makes something an Av Melachah?
(a) RASHI (DH Ofeh) says that anything that was done for the construction
of the Mishkan is an Av Melachah. One may ask, the verse says that all the
materials necessary for the construction of the Mishkan were collected
within two days after the people were commanded to build the Mishkan. How
could they have prepared the herbs and plants used for the dyes in just two
days, if they needed to plow, sow, reap, and so on? The IGLEI TAL
(Introduction, #2) infers from Rashi that any act that was necessary to
perform in order to obtain a material needed for the Mishkan is a Melachah
even though it was *not done* for the Mishkan when it was actually
(b) However, the RAMBAN (74a) writes that only labors that were performed
by the Jews explicitly for the sake of building the Mishkan are considered
Melachos. This is supported by the wording of the Gemara earlier (49b),
"*Hem Zar'u* v'Atem Lo Tizre'u" -- "Since they sowed, you shall not sow."
How did they sow and reap in just two days? The AVNEI NEZER explains, based
on a Midrash Raba, that just like Yakov Avinu planted Arazim trees in Egypt
for the Mishkan and bid his children to take them out in order to build the
Mishkan, so, too, he told them to plant and take out other materials for
the Mishkan. Since the acts of planting etc. were done *for the Mishkan*
(albeit in Egypt), one is Chayav for doing such acts on Shabbos.
(c) The RAMBAM (Teshuvos, #134) cites RAV HAI GA'ON who explains that any
of the Melachos leading up to baking (i.e. the first 13 of the Mishnah)
that was done in order to prepare for *offering the Korbanos and Menachos*
in the Mishkan are considered a Melachah, and this is what the Gemara means
by "*Hem Zar'u* v'Atem Lo Tizre'u," and by "Tana Sidura d'Pas Nakat" (Daf
74b). The AVNEI NEZER cites support for this from Rashi on 92a (DH sh'Ken
Masa) who cites a Yerushalmi in the name of Rav Hai Ga'on.
However, it is not clear why Rav Hai Gaon only learns the Melachos of
baking bread from the Korbanos of the Mishkan, and not the other Melachos
(such as ha'Shochet etc.). Perhaps Rav Hai Gaon only means to explain why
the Mishnah *lists* Melachos of baking instead of Melachos of cooking (see
Rashi in the Mishnah), but not that they are Melachos *because* they were
done for the Menachos. (M. Kornfeld)
3) DIFFERENT FORMS OF "ZOREI'A"
QUESTION: The Gemara concludes that "Zomer Chayav Mishum Notei'a" (pruning
is Chayav because of planting), and "Notei'a, Markiv, and Mavrich Chayav Af
Mishum Zorei'a" (even planting, grafting, and bending a vine branch and
planting it are Chayav because of sowing). RASHI explains that since those
three (Notei'a, Markiv, and Mavrich) are all forms of the Melachah of
Zorei'a, if a person did all of them together with Zorei'a, one is Chayav
to bring only one Chatas.
4) KNOCKING A DATE OFF THE TREE
This implies that if one does Zomer, which is Chayav only because of
Notei'a, together with Zorei'a, one would be Chayav to bring *two*
Chata'os. But the Gemara just said that one who does all of these together
is only Chayav one Chatas!
(a) The RITVA explains that according to Rashi, one is indeed Chayav two
Chata'os, one for Zomer (which is Chayav because of Notei'a) and one for
Zorei'a. But if he does Zomer and Zorei'a together with Notei'a as well, he
will be Chayav to bring only one Chatas, because Zomer is part of Notei'a,
while Notei'a is identical to Zorei'a (but done with a sapling instead of a
seed). Since Notei'a and Zorei'a are covered by one Chatas, Zomer, which is
a Toldah of Notei'a, is also covered by that Chatas.
(b) It is possible to learn differently in Rashi, though. When the Gemara
says that Notei'a, Markiv, and Mavrich are Chayav "Af Mishum Zorei'a" (lit.
"even because of Zorei'a"), it does not mean that they are Chayav for
*both* Notei'a and Zorei'a. Rather, they are Chayav *only* for Zorei'a. "Af
Mishhum Zorei'a" means that *even all of these* are Chayav only for Zorei'a
(for we might have thought that they are their own independent Av Melachos
and Chayav for both themselves and for Zorei'a -- see Background notes).
The Chidush of Zomer, on the other hand, is the exact opposite. It is
obvious that Zomer is not its own separate Av Melachah. We might have
thought that Zomer is not Chayav *at all* because it does not resemble any
form of planting (since when one prunes a tree, he does not place any
object into the ground in order to grow). Therefore Rav Ami is teaching us
that Zomer is indeed Chayav for Notei'a.
(c) TOSFOS, quoted by the RITVA, disagrees with Rashi and says that the
Gemara is discussing Hasra'ah (warning someone before he commits a sin),
and not the obligation to bring a Korban or multiple Korbanos. The Gemara
is teaching that one can only be Chayav for Zomer if he was warned with
"Notei'a" (i.e. the witnesses warned him and said, "You will be Chayav if
you do that act because it is an act of Notei'a!"). To be Chayav for
Notei'a, Markiv, and Mavrich, though, one can be warned for either Notei'a
or Zorei'a (but one will always be Chayav only one Korban, regardless of
what he was warned for).
QUESTION: Rav Papa says that one who throws a rock or clod of earth at a
date palm and knocks a date off is Chayav for two Melachos -- Tolesh
(picking fruit off a tree) and Mefarek. RASHI explains that Mefarek in this
context refers to taking the date out of its cluster. However, if this is
true, then why is one not Chayav for Mefarek every time he removes a grape
from a cluster (even if the cluster of grapes is not attached to the tree)?
(a) TOSFOS (DH v'Achas) and other Rishonim had a different text of Rashi,
stating that Mefarek refers to "unburdening" the tree from its burden --
(b) However, the Rishonim reject that explanation, because we do not find
that a person is Chayav for Mefarek every time that he picks any type of
fruit from a tree. He is only Chayav for Kotzer (Tolesh), but according to
this rendition of Rashi, since he is unburdening the tree of its fruit, he
should be Chayav for Mefarek as well.
Therefore, Tosfos explains in the name of the RASHBAM that the dates have
an outer skin that comes off when it is knocked from the tree. Taking the
date out of its outer skin is the same action as Mefarek, taking a grain
out from its sheath.
(c) The RAMBAN learns that pulling a date off of its cluster *after* it
falls from the tree is called Mefarek. The Ramban seems to have understood
that the normal manner was to cut off the clusters of dates from the tree
and then afterwards to separate dates from the cluster prior to selling
them (in this respect it differs from grapes, because it is normal to sell
grapes with their cluster). This may also be the intention of Rashi
according to our rendition.