ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous dafShabbos 85
(a) Although the five seeds (that one is permitted to sow in a patch - of
six by six Tefachim) are hinted in the Pasuk in Yeshayah, the Shiur of six
by six Tefachim is *not*. That we know from a tradition that the area of
land in which five seeds do not feed from each other is in a patch which is
six by six Tefachim (i.e. we are speaking about the middle seed vis-a-vis
those on the sides - not the seeds on one of the sides vis-a-vis those on
another, as we explained earlier). We learn from "Lo Sasig Gevul Re'acha
Asher Gavlu Rishonim", that we follow tradition even in scientific matters
such as these, in spite of the fact that the tradition is not one that was
handed down to Moshe at Har Sinai.
(b) The "Rishonim" in the Pasuk refers to the Emori'im and the Chivi, who
were experts in horticulture.
(c) They could determine which land was good for which trees by smelling
(Chori) and tasting (Chivi [ke'Chivya - like a snake]) it.
(d) When Rav Acha bar Ya'akov said 'she'Na'asu B'nei Chorin mi'Nichsehen',
he was referring to a Pasuk in Devarim, which records how the Bnei Eisav
drove the Chori out of their land. Consequently, they became free from
(a) An Arugah is a patch of land.
(b) When Rav Asi said 'Arugah Tochah Shishah - Chutz mi'Gevuleha', he
meant that the six by six Tefachim does not include the border surrounding
the patch, which the person watering the field would tread when performing
(c) Rebbi Yehudah gives the width of the surrounding border as the size of
footsteps, which the Gemara explains to be one Tefach.
(d) His source is the Pasuk in Eikev: "ve'Hishkisa be'Raglecha ke'Gan
(a) Rav establishes our Mishnah in the case of one solitary patch - not
surrounded by other patches; because if it *had* been, then it would not
have been possible to fill the entire rows with seeds. Why not?
Because the row in one patch and the row beside it in the next patch will
be less than three Tefachim apart.
(b) It would indeed be possible to plant five different seeds in a series
of patches, but one would then only be able to plant *half* of each row -
the one in the one patch, the *north* half , shall we say, and the one in
the next patch, the *south* half.
(c) 'be'Memale es ha'Keranos' means that our Mishnah speaks when he
completely fills two parallel rows of the patch (and plants only one seed
in the middle of the two remaining rows).
(d) This is not how Rashi explained in the Mishnah, where he explained that
he fills all *four* rows, but only *nearly* till the end, as we explained
there. (See Maharsha - and Rashash).
(a) When the Gemara asks 've'Liz'ra me'Abra'i, ve'Lo Limli mi'Gava'i'?, it
means to ask why Rav needs to establish our Mishnah in a case of 'be'Memale
es ha'Keranos'? Let him not fill the sides with seeds (only half of the
sides, as we explained there), and this will enable him to fill his *entire
field* with patches, instead of only *one* patch in the whole field?
(b) Chazal were afraid, answers the Gemara, that, were they to permit
sowing half the rows in that manner, he may come to fill the entire row,
thereby transgressing the Isur of Kil'ayim.
Note: It is obvious that one is permitted to fill his field with as many
rows as he likes - provided he leaves *three* Tefachim between every two
rows. Rav is speaking about sowing two rows only *two* Tefachim apart.
(a) 'Rosh Tor' is the concession to permit the tip of a patch of a
vegetable field which grows diagonally into a field of wheat, for example,
because, even though they feed from each other, the very shape of the Rosh
Tor is a Si'man of separation (similar to that in our Mishnah - see 84b
Shmuel permits what we referred to earlier as 'Makom Keranos' (in 4b) -
he is not concerned that perhaps he will fill in the entire row with seeds,
as Rav is.
(b) In that case, asks the Gemara, why should it not also be permitted to
fill the field with patches, and, instead of filling all the rows, or even
half of each row, to fill the entire north and south rows of one patch, for
example, and in the patches beside it, to sow only *one* seed in the middle
of the row (which should be permitted because it resembles a Rosh Tor. By
arranging the whole field in this way, he will be able to fill it with
patches, half of whose rows are filled, the other half, with only one seed
in the middle.
(c) Rosh Tor, answer the Gemara, only applies to a (large) field, but not
to one single patch, which, due to its size, still looks as if the seeds
(Interestingly, the principle that governs Rosh Tor, *does* apply to two
rows (even in a patch) when they are planted adjacent to each other, rather
than parallel, as we explained in our Mishnah.)
(The Lashon of the Gemara seems to go better with the explanation of
Rabeinu Chananel, who explains Shmuel to mean that he turns the top of the
growing vegetables of the one patch towards the north, and the row next to
it in the other patch towards the south. This will be effective even if he
does fill in the *entire* row.)
(a) Our Gemara was written in Bavel. However, it often quotes Amora'im who
lived in Eretz Yisrael. They are generally known as the 'B'nei Ma'arva'.
(b) The B'nei Ma'arva asked whether, if one dug a deep furrow to cut
through the patch, in which he wants to sow one of the five kinds of seeds,
or even a sixth kind, whether, or not, the additional seeds create a
mixture which negates the Heter of planting so many seeds in such a small
(c) Rav Asi will point out that the Mishnah in Kil'ayim speaks specifically
about single rows of *pumpkins and cucumbers*, which have large branches.
Consequently, one row of pumpkins or of cucumbers is considered an Irbuv;
but that is not the case with smaller vegetables. Consequently, one furrow
of vegetables which cuts through a vegetable patch, will not negate the Din
(d) *Two* alternate rows of pumpkins and cucumbers are permitted because
two rows are considered like an entire field - and two fields one beside
the other, is not called an Irbuv.
(a) Rebbi Yochanan suggests that, anyone who wishes to fill his entire
field with vegetables, may arrange square patches of six by six Tefachim,
with circles with a diameter of five Tefachim measured off inside the
squares. He is permitted to fill the circle with one kind of seed, and each
of the half-Tefach sides surrounding the circle, he may fill in with
another kind of seed.
The advantages of Rebbi Yochanan's circular patch over the square one of
our Mishnah, are: 1. that one may fill in the entire circle (instead of
just the one seed permitted by our Mishnah, and 2. that the half-Tefach
surrounding it may likewise be filled in (presumably except for the
corners) - as opposed to the one thin line of seeds permitted by the
(b) According to Amri de'Bei Rav Yanai, he is nevertheless obligated to
leave the Tefach border surrounding the patch, devoid of seeds.
(c) According to Rav Ashi, he is even permitted to fill in the Tefach
border as well. However, he must be careful to plant the seeds there in the
opposite direction to the seeds planted in the square surrounding the
(d) No! Rebbi Yochanan will explain that, when the Beraisa specifies a
square box in its description of an Arugah, it is not to preclude his
circle, but to teach us that if the tip of the square box enters a field
diagonally (Rosh Tor) it is permitted (Rashi suggests that we may be
talking about a *patch*, and that Rebbi Yochanan holds of Rosh Tor even by