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prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem

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Sotah 45


1) If "Zekeinecha" implies two judges according to Rebbi Shimon, and "ve'Shoftecha" another two according to Rebbi Yehudah, then "ve'Yatz'u" and 'u'Mad'du" should add another four judges (making seven according to the one and nine according to the other). In fact, they both agree that "ve'Yatz'u" comes to obligate the judges themselves to go to the scene of the murder and not to send Sheluchim, and "u'Mad'du" - that measuring the nearest town is obligatory, even if it is obvious which town is the closest.


(a) The author of our Mishnah (which obligates only the judges to participate in the ceremony of Eglah Arufah) cannot be Rebbi Eliezer ben Ya'akov. According to him - "ve'Shoftecha" comes to include the King (based on the Pasuk in Mishlei "Melech ba'Mishpat Ya'amid Aretz"), and the Kohen Gadol (based on the Pasuk in Shoftim, Devarim) "u'Va'sa el ha'Kohanim ... ve'El ha'Shofet ... ").

(b) We have doubts whether Rebbi Eliezer ben Ya'akov even agrees with Rebbi Yehudah or Rebbi Shimon regarding the number of judges who had to go out - because he might require the entire Beis-Din ha'Gadol (i.e. the Sanhedrin) to go out.

(c) Rav Yosef resolves the She'eilah from a Beraisa, which speaks about a Zakein Mamrei meeting the Sanhedrin in Bei Pagi - which is the area within the precincts of Yerushalayim.

(d) The Tana there says that if a Zakein met the Sanhedrin in Bei Pagi and rebelled against them there - he does not become a Zakein Mamrei, because the Torah writes "ve'Kamta ve'Alisa el *ha'Makom* ... ", teaching us that the location (of the Lishkas ha'Gazis) is vital to the Din of Zakein Mamrei.

(a) The Beraisa must be speaking when ...
1. ... the Zakein Mamrei encountered the entire Sanhedrin in Bei Pagi - because otherwise, due to the fact that some of the remaining judges would rule in his favor, he could not be declared a Zakein Mamrei anyway.
2. ... they left the Lishkas ha'Gazis for a D'var Mitzvah and not a D'var Reshus - because otherwise, based on the Pasuk in Shir Hashirim "Sharerech Agan ha'Sahar Al Yechsar ha'Mazeg", it would be forbidden for more than two thirds of the judges to leave the Lishkas ha'Gazis simultaneously.
(b) Abaye refutes Rav Yosef's proof by establishing the Sanhedrin's departure from the Lishkas ha'Gazis - to perform the Mitzvah of adding to the city of Yerushalayim or to one of the Azaros (which requires the entire Sanhedrin).

(c) Despite Abaye's alternative interpretation of the Beraisa - Rav Yosef's proof is accepted, because he has a Beraisa to support him.

(d) We have now proved - that Rebbi Eliezer ben Ya'akov also requires the entire Sanhedrin to participate in the ceremony of the Eglah Arufah.

(a) Rebbi Yehudah extrapolates from the Pasuk "ve'Shachachta Omer ba'Sadeh", 'P'rat le'Tamun' (conforming with the Tana of our Mishnah, which Darshens "ba'Adamah", 'P'rat le'Tamun'. The Rabbanan Darshen - 'Lerabos es ha'Tamun'.

(b) Rav reconciles the Rabbanan with our Mishnah, by examining both accompanying Pesukim ("Ki Yimatzei Chalal [ba'Adamah]" and "Ki Siktzor Ketzircha be'Sadcha ve'Shachachta Omer [ba'Sadeh]") - "Ki Yimatzei Chalal" implies wherever the corpse is found (even if it is hidden), and the Torah writes "ba'Adamah" to preclude Tamun; whereas "Ki Siktzor Ketzircha be'Sadcha ve'Shachachta Omer" implies that it is revealed (similar to "Katzir"), in which case "ba'Sadeh" comes to include Tamun.

(a) When, explaining Rebbi Yehudah, Rebbi Avahu Amar Rebbi Elazar learns from "be'Sadcha ve'Shachachta", 'P'rat le'she'Tzafu Omrin le'Toch Sadeh Chaveiro' - we think he means that if the wind blew his sheaves into his friend's field and they landed on top of a stone or a post, they are not subject to Shikchah.

(b) The Rabbanan learn this from "be'Sadeh" "be'Sadcha" - which Rebbi Yehudah does not consider a source for a D'rashah.

(c) Shikchah - is not applicable to sheaves that were blown into someone else's field, because the Torah writes "be'Sadcha" (and not in someone else's field).

(d) This deters us from inferring from Rebbi Avahu Amar Rebbi Elazar that 'Tzafu' would be considered Shikchah in one's own field - because if we were to interpret 'Tzafu' as we have until now, then obvious inference that if the sheaf was lying on the ground, it would be Shikchah, would be incorrect.

6) Consequently, when Rebbi Avahu Amar Rebbi Elazar mentions Tzafu in someone else's field, he is referring (not to the sheaves landing on top of something, as it does in the rest of the Sugya, but) - to their being blown into the field by the wind (which is the only way that they would get there).


(a) The Tana Kama in a Beraisa, maintains that if someone places a sheaf that he intends to take into town on top of another sheaf and then forgets them both, the bottom one is Shikchah, but the top one is not. According to Rebbi Shimon ben Rebbi Yehudah - neither sheaf is Shikchah, the one because it is Tamun, the other, because it is Tzaf.

(b) We attempt to prove from the fact that both Tana'im agree that the top sheaf is not Shikchah - that Tzaf even in one's own field, is not Shikchah.

(c) We refute this proof however - by ascribing the real reason that the top sheaf is not Shikchah to the fact that the owner already acquired the sheaf when he picked it up to take into town.

(d) In spite of this, the Tana needed to mention that he placed the one sheaf on top of the other - to teach us the Machlokes Tana'im in the case of the bottom sheaf.

(a) When Rebbi Shimon ben Rebbi Yehudah said 'Mipnei she'Hu Tzaf' (seeing as that is not the real reason, as we just explained) - what he really meant to say was 'Mipnei she'Hu ke'Tzaf'.

(b) When Abaye once announced that he felt like ben Azai in the main streets of Teveryah - he meant that his mind was so lucid that he, in his home-town of Pumedisa, he would be able to tackle any problem that was posed to him, like ben Azai in his home-town of Teveryah.

(c) A certain Talmid-Chacham asked him what the Din would be if one came across one corpse on top of another. One might measure ...

1. ... just from the top one - if the fact that it is 'Min be'Mino' does not prevent the Din of Tamun of taking affect, but does prevent Tzaf.
2. ... just from the bottom one - if 'Min be'Mino does not prevent Tzaf from taking affect, but does prevent Tamun.
3. ... from neither corpse - if 'Min be'Mino' does not prevent either from taking affect.
(d) A fourth possibility is - whether we will measure from both corpses, because 'Min be'Mino prevents both Tamun and Tzaf from taking affect (only it is already included in the first two She'eilos).



(a) Abaye resolved the She'eilah (of Tamun) from the Machlokes between the Tana Kama and Rebbi Shimon ben Yehudah Amar Rebbi Shimon (who argue over the bottom sheaf). Assuming that both Tana'im hold like Rebbi Yehudah, their Machlokes is whether 'Min be'Mino Havi Tamun' (Rebbi Shimon ben Yehudah) or not (the Rabbanan).

(b) We refute this proposal however - to establish the Rabbanan like the Rabbanan of Rebbi Yehudah ("be'Sadeh" 'Lerabos es ha'Tamun'), and Rebbi Shimon ben Yehudah like Rebbi Yehudah ("be'Sadeh" 'P'rat le'Tamun').

(c) Even the Rabbanan will agree however - that according to Rebbi Yehudah 'Min be'Mino Havi Tamun'.

(d) In that case, the Tana speaks in a case where the owner placed one sheaf on top of another and not on dust or clods of earth - to teach us that even in such a case, Rebbi Yehudah holds that it is Tamun.

(a) The Tana Kama of the Beraisa, explaining the Pasuk "Ki Yimatzei Chalal ba'Adamah Nofeil ba'Sadeh" precludes Tamun be'Gal from "ba'Adamah", hanging on a tree (even though he was killed by the sword) from "Nofeil", and floating on the water from "ba'Sadeh". The two D'rashos that he makes from "Chalal" are - "Chalal", 've'Lo Chanuk' (because Chalal implies death by a (metal) sword, and "Chalal", 've'Lo Parpar' (who is gasping his last breath but is not yet dead).

(b) The only specification from all of these that Rebbi Elazar requires is - Chalal (slain by the sword).

(c) Rebbi Yossi b'Rebbi Yehudah asked Rebbi Elazar that, in view of the fact that he Darshens "Chalal", why does he ignore the D'rashos of "ba'Adamah", "Nofeil" and "ba'Sadeh". He replied - that he only Darshened "Chalal" because the Torah mentions it a number of times (an indication that it is crucial).

(a) The Tana of our Mishnah exempts a corpse who was found near a border town or a town that is inhabited mainly by Nochrim from the Din of Eglah Arufah - on the basis of the Pasuk "Ki Yimatzei", which implies that it happened that way, precluding cases where it can be expected to happen.

(b) We learn this from the Pasuk "Ziknei ha'Ir" - that one only measures to a town which has a Beis-Din.

(c) Having taught us that we do not measure to a town which has no Beis-Din, the Tana nevertheless needs to continue that one only measures to a town which has a Beis-Din - to preclude the implication that when a town has no Beis-Din one does not measure at all (but that one goes on to the next town that does have a Beis-Din).

(d) We Darshen this from the Pasuk "ve'Lakchu Ziknei ha'Ir ha'Hi", because, otherwise, having already mentioned "ha'Ir ha'Hi", it could have continued "ve'Lakchu Zekeinehah Eglas Bakar".

(a) Rebbi Eliezer says that a corpse that one finds exactly in between two towns - must each bring an Eglah Arufah. This is based on the principle 'Efshar Letzamtem' (it is possible for the two towns to be exactly the same distance [and it is not a Safek]), which he must hold. In addition, he must also hold that when the Torah writes "ha'Ir ha'Kerovah el he'Chalal", it incorporates the plural ("Kerovah" 'va'Afilu Kerovos'). (If either of these facts was absent, the two towns would be able to bring a joint Eglah and stipulate that whichever town was closer would be its owner).

(b) The Tana of our Mishnah rules that Yerushalayim cannot bring an Eglah Arufah. His source is the Pasuk "Lerishtah" - and he holds that Yerushalayim was not distributed to the tribes as an inheritance.

(c) According to Rebbi Eliezer, if a corpse is found in one spot and its head in another, one carries the head to the body and measures from there. Rebbi Akiva maintains the opposite.

1. The basis of their Machlokes is - whether it is the head that rolls away from the body (Rebbi Eliezer [as would happen if the person was still or walking slowly when he was decapitated]), or the body that is thrown a distance from the head (Rebbi Akiva [as would happen if he was running]).
2. Its ramifications do not affect the realm of 'Eglah Arufah', but that of 'Meis Mitzvah', who must be buried at the exact spot where he is found.
(a) According to Rebbi Eliezer, they would measure from the navel, according to Rebbi Akiva, from the nostrils. Rebbi Eliezer ben Ya'akov says - from the neck (the place where he was slain).

(b) Rebbi Eliezer ben Ya'akov's source is the Pasuk "Laseis Oscha el *Tzavrei Chalelei* Resha'im". The basis of the Machlokes between Rebbi Eliezer and Rebbi Akiva is - whether the chief area of life is in the nostrils or in the navel.

(c) This Machlokes seems to follow the Machlokes between the Tana Kama of the Beraisa, who holds that a baby's head is formed first, and Aba Shaul, who holds that it is his navel. We reconcile Aba Shaul with Rebbi Akiva however - by differentiating between the formation of the body and the point where the Soul leaves the body (which even Aba Shaul agrees is the nostrils).

(d) We learn from the Pasuk "Kol Asher Nishmas Ru'ach Chayim be'Apav" - that the Soul leaves the body via the nostrils.

(a) The elders of the Beis-Din ha'Gadol, having performed their Mitzvah (of measuring) returned to the Lishkas ha'Gazis. The local Beis-Din then brought the Eglah Arufah.

(b) The calf must have never drawn a yoke. It did not matter if it was blemished.

(c) It was taken down to a hard valley (of virgin soil). It did not matter if the earth there was not hard.

(d) They killed it with a Kupitz (a large knife) from the back of its neck.

(a) Working that valley was permanently prohibited, yet combing flax and cleaning stones was permitted - because it is not connected with the ground.

(b) The local Beis-Din would announce 'Yadeinu Lo Shafchu es ha'Dam ha'Zeh ... ' - prior to which they would wash their hands.

(c) The Kohanim would pray 'Kaper le'Amcha Yisrael Asher Padisa Hashem ... '.

(d) And Hashem declared (here in this Pasuk) 've'Nikaper Lahem ha'Dam', meaning that if they followed the prescribed procedure, they would be absolved from the innocent blood that had been shed.

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