ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous daf Sotah 26
SOTAH 26,27,29,30 - These Dafim have been dedicated by Mrs. Estanne Abraham-Fauer in
honor of the first Yahrzeit (18 Teves 5761) of her father, Reb Mordechai ben Eliezer
Zvi (Weiner). May the merit of supporting and advancing the study of the Talmud be
(a) The Tana draws a distinction between a young man whose old wife or one who is
unable to have children is a Sotah who has another wife - in which case she is fit to
retain and drinks, one who does not, in which case she is unfit to retain and does
(b) The latter leaves the marriage without a Kesuvah.
(c) The Tana obligates a Sotah who is pregnant or feeding to drink the Mei Sotah (or
to leave without a Kesuvah) - even though this will result in her fetus or her baby
(d) What 'Eishes Mamzer le'Mamzer, Eishes Nasin le'Nasin, Eishes Ger ve'Eved
Meshuchrar ve'Aylonis' have in common is - that they either drink the Mei Sotah or
they leave the marriage without a Kesuvah.
(a) Rav Nachman (who holds that even the Rabbanan of Rebbi Eliezer agree that an
Aylonis does not drink) holds like Rebbi Shimon ben Elazar, who learns from the Pasuk
"Ve'niksah Ve'nizre'ah Zara" - a woman who is unfit to have children does not drink
the Mei Sotah.
(b) Rebbi Akiva learns from "Ve'niksah Ve'nizre'ah Zara" - that if the woman had
previously been barren, she would now bear children).
(c) Rebbi Yishmael objects to this D'rashah - because is would serve as an incentive
for women who could not have children to contravene their husband's instructions and
seclude with other men to enable them to bear children (as indeed Chanah threatened
to do, according to the Gemara in B'rachos).
(d) So he modifies the D'rashah to learn from the Pasuk - that if until now, she was
used to having painful births, she would from now on, bear children painlessly, and
if she was used to bearing girls, short or ugly children, she will from now on give
birth to boys, tall and good-looking children.
(a) The Tana of our Mishnah included a Pasul woman who is married to a Mamzer in the
Din of drinking, as well as the wife of a convert and a a freed slave. He found it
necessary to include ...
1. ... a Pasul woman who is married to a Mamzer - because we might otherwise have
thought that (bearing in mind that the main function of the water is to make peace
between the man and his wife) it would be better for her not drink, so as not to
encourage them coming together again and bringing more Mamzeirim into the world.
(b) His source for including them - is "Ve'amarta (see Tosfos).
2. ... the wife of a convert and a a freed slave - because the Torah introduces the
Parshah of Sotah with the words "Daber el B'nei Yisrael ... ", implying 'but not
(c) He also includes the wife of a Kohen. We might have otherwise Darshened from the
Pasuk "*ve'Hi* Lo Nispasah" (bearing in mind that "ve'Hi" is a Mi'ut [which comes to
preclude]) - only a bas Yisrael (to whom the inference ''ve'Hi Lo Nispasah", 'Ha
Nispasah [be'O'nes] Muteres' applies) is subject to the Dinim of Sotah, but not a bas
Kohen (to whom it does not).
(a) The Tana states further (with regard to the wife of a Kohen) 'u'Muteres
le'Ba'alah', which he finds necessary to insert in the Mishnah - because he is
speaking when, immediately after the Sotah drunk, she began to deteriorate, conveying
the impression that she is a Zonah whom is forbidden to her husband.
(b) Even though the Tana is speaking when the water affects her, it is nevertheless
not at all obvious that she is indeed guilty (and that she did not die on account of
her merits) - because the Mishnah is speaking when the water affected other parts of
her body than her stomach and thighs (e.g. her head became heavy ... ).
(c) The Tana is coming to teach us - that we do not consider the fact that the water
is affecting her via limbs other than her stomach and thighs as an indication that
she had relations with the man concerned, only she was an O'nes (which would render
her forbidden to her husband who is a Kohen).
(a) The Tana also says 'Eishes S'ris Shoseh'. This is not a case of the Shechivah of
the adulterer preceding that of the husband (in which case, the water will not have
any effect) - because although a S'ris cannot be Mazri'a, he can be intimate.
(b) The Tana must be referring to a S'ris Chamah (who was born a S'ris) and not a
S'ris Adam (who became one through an accident) - because the latter is forbidden to
retain his wife (due to the Pasuk in Ki Seitzei "Lo Yavo Fetzu'a Daka u'Kerus
Shafchah bi'Kehal Hashem"), and we have already learned that a woman who is forbidden
to her husband does not drink.
(c) We might have thought that Kinuy will not apply to an adulterer who is a close
relative - because "Ve'nitma'ah Ve'nitma'ah" ('Echad le'Ba'al ve'Echad le'Bo'el)
implies that the adulterer (like her husband) becomes forbidden through it, to
preclude one who is forbidden to her anyway.
(d) We refute this proposition - on the grounds that the Pasuk comes to forbid the
adulterer should he have been permitted until the seclusion, but not to preclude from
the prohibition one who was forbidden already (because there is no word in the Pasuk
(a) The word "Ish" - comes to preclude a woman from the Din of Sotah if the Bo'el is
(b) The Tana includes 've'she'Eino Ish' together with a Katan. Initially we suggest
that this means a Shachuf. 'Shachafas' is - tuberculosis (a wasting disease which
leaves the patient able to perform Bi'ah, but unable to be Mazri'a).
(c) But we reject this proposition on account of Shmuel - who said that he both
qualifies as a Bo'el in the Din of Sotah and disqualifies a bas Kohen from eating
(d) We attempted to preclude a Shachuf (as well as a Saris - see Tosfos DH 'Shachuf')
from the Din of Sotah - from the Pasuk "ve'Shachav Ish Osach *Shichvas Zera*".
(a) The Pasuk "ve'Lo Yechalel *Zar'o*" does not come to preclude a Shachuf from
disqualifying a bas Kohen from eating Terumah (because, like a Saris, he is a ben
Shechivah), neither does it come to preclude the Bi'ah of a Nochri, because of a
statement by Rav Hamnuna, who said - that he both qualifies as a Bo'el in the Din of
Sotah and disqualifies a bas Kohen from eating Terumah.
(b) We might have thought that he does not qualify as a Bo'el in the Din of Sotah
(just as we learned above regarding a Saris), and that, based on the Pasuk "u'Vas
Kohen Ki Sihyeh le'Ish Zar", his Bi'ah does not disqualify a bas Kohen from Terumah
either - because "Ki Sihyeh" implies that it is only the Bi'ah of someone with whom
Kidushin is effective who disqualifies her.
(c) However, Rebbi Yochanan quoting Rebbi Yishmael learns from the Pasuk "u'Vas Kohen
Ki Sih'yeh Almanah u'Gerushah ve'Zera Ein Lah, ve'Shavah el Beis Avihah" - that it is
only a man whose divorce and death render the bas Kohen a divorcee or a widow,
respectively, who permit her to return to her father's house to eat Terumah, but not
the Bi'ah of a Nochri, whose divorce and death will not affect her.
(a) So the 'Mi she'Eino Ish' in our Mishnah - is an animal, who does not qualify as a
Bo'el from the Pasuk "ve'Lo Yechalel Zar'o" (because Z'nus with an animal is not
called Z'nus [even though it carries with it an Isur S'kilah]).
(b) The Tana of a Beraisa learns from the Pasuk "Lo Savi Esnan Zonah u'Mechir Kelev
... Gam *Sheneihem*" - that this Pasuk is restricted to two cases, and does not
incorporate four (meaning that there is no such thing as Esnan Kelev or Mechir
(c) The case of ...
1. ... Esnan Kelev - is when a man gives a prostitute a lamb in exchange for having
relations with his dog.
(d) Having included a Shachuf and a Saris in the Din of Sotah, we have a problem as
to why the Torah writes "Shichvas Zera". It cannot come to preclude a case where a
husband warned her not to ...
2. ... Mechir Zonah - is when a man swaps his prostitute slave-girl for a lamb.
1. ... perform an unnatural Bi'ah with the adulterer (like Rav Sheishes suggests) -
because the Torah writes "Mishkevei Ishah" (in Acharei-Mos) comparing an unnatural
Bi'ah to a natural one (thereby including such a warning in the Din of Sotah).
2. ... lie with him in close proximity, without performing Bi'ah (like Rava suggests
- according to our initial understanding) - because even though this may well be an
indecent act, there is no reason why it should render a woman a Sotah.
(a) Abaye explains that "Shichvas Zera comes to preclude Neshikah - the first stage
of Bi'ah (which entails no more than the touching of the genitals).
(b) We object to Abaye's explanation - on the grounds that although his explanation
is acceptable according to those who explain Ha'ara'ah (a partial Bi'ah which the
Torah compares to a complete Bi'ah) as 'Hachnasas Atarah' (the entry of the limb),
but according to those who explain it to be Neshikah, how can we preclude from the
Din of Sotah a case which the Torah has already compared to Bi'ah?
(c) So in order to accommodate those who interpret Ha'ara'ah as Neshikah, we
reinstate Rava's answer (that it comes to preclude when the husband warned his wife
not to lie with the adulterer in close proximity, without performing Bi'ah). If not
for the Pasuk, we may well have thought that the Torah takes its cue from the whim of
the husband (and whatever he is fussy about, renders her a Sotah).