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Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Baba Bathra
R. Joshua b. Levi further stated: 'All the days of the poor are evil? Surely there are Sabbaths and Festivals!1 — [The explanation, however, is] according to Samuel. For Samuel said: A change of diet is the beginning of sickness'2 It is written in the Book of Ben Sira: All the days of the poor are evil; Ben Sira says: The nights also. Lower than [all] roofs is his roof, [and] the rain of other roofs [pours down] upon his roof; on the height of mountains is his vineyard. [and] the earth of his vineyard [is washed down] into the vineyards [of others].3
MISHNAH. IF A PERSON HAD SENT WEDDING PRESENTS TO THE HOUSE OF HIS FATHER-IN-LAW,4 EVEN IF HE SENT A HUNDRED MANEH AND ATE THERE A BRIDEGROOM'S MEAL, [ EVEN IF IT WERE ONLY OF THE VALUE] OF ONE DENAR, THEY5 [CANNOT [ANY MORE] BE RECLAIMED.6 [IF. HOWEVER]. HE DID NOT EAT THERE A BRIDEGROOM'S MEAL THEY5 MAY BE RECLAIMED. [IF] HE SENT MANY PRESENTS WHICH WERE TO RETURN WITH HER TO THE HOUSE OF HER HUSBAND.7 THESE MAY BE RECLAIMED.8 [IF. HOWEVER, HE SENT A] FEW PRESENTS WHICH SHE WAS TO USE AT THE HOUSE OF HER FATHER, [THESE MAY] NOT BE RECLAIMED.
GEMARA. Raba said: Only [when the meal9 was worth] a denar,10 but not [when it was worth] less than a denar. [Is not this] obvious? We have, [surely], learnt, ONE DENAR! — It might have been assumed that the same law [applies] even [to the case where it was worth] less than a denar, and that [the reason] why a denar was mentioned11 [was because that] was the usual cost,12 hence [it was necessary to] teach us [that we do not say so].
We learnt, HE ATE; what [is the law if] he drank? We learnt, HE; what [is the law in the case of] his representative?13 We learnt, THERE; what [if] it14 was sent to him?15 — Come and hear what Rab Judah said in the name of Samuel: It once happened with a' certain man who had sent to the house of his father-in-law a hundred wagons of jars of wine and jars of oil, and vessels of silver and of gold and silk garments while he [himself]. in his joy. came riding. and stopped at the door of the house of his father-in-law. They brought out a cup of something warm and he drank and died. This practical question16 was brought up by R. Aha. the 'Governor of the Castle',17 before the Sages at Usha, and they decided, 'Gifts which were intended18 to be used up19 cannot be reclaimed; and such as are not intended to be used up19 may be reclaimed. From this it may be inferred [that] even if he [only] drank; from this it may [also] be inferred [that] even [if the meal was worth less than a denar.20 R. Ashi asked: 'Who can tell us that they did not crush a pearl21 for him which was worth a thousand zuz and gave him to drink! [May] it be inferred, [however that] even if [it] was sent to him?22 — [No;] it is possible [that] anywhere [near] the door of the house of one's father-in-law is [the same] as the house [itself].
The question was raised: Has he23 to pay24 in proportion?25 [Further:] Is he entitled to26 the appreciation of the gifts?27 [Do we say that] since if they28 are available they are returned to him, the appreciation took place in his possession; or, perhaps. since if they were lost or stolen she29 has to make compensation. the appreciation took place in her possession? — This is undecided.
Raba inquired: What [is the law in the case of] gifts intended to be used up that were not used up?30 — Come and hear: 'And this practical question was brought up by R. Aha, the governor of the castle, before the Sages at Usha and they decided [that] gifts intended to be used up [can] not be reclaimed, and such as are not intended to be used up may be reclaimed' — Does31 not [this refer] even [to the case] where they were not used up! — No; where they were used up. Come and hear: [IF, HOWEVER, HE SENT A] FEW PRESENTS WHICH SHE WAS TO USE AT THE HOUSE OF HER FATHER, [THESE MAY] NOT BE RECLAIMED!32 — Raba interpreted [the Mishnah as referring to] a veil or a hair-net.33
Rab Judah said in the name of Rab: It once happened that a certain person sent to the house of his father-in-law new wine and new oil and garments of new linen34 at [the] Pentecost season. What does [this]35 teach us? — If you wish I would say: The praise of the land of Israel.36 And if you prefer [it] I would say: That if he advances [such] a plea it is accepted.37
Rab Judah said in the name of Rab: It once happened that a certain person was told [that] his wife was defective in the sense of smell38 He followed her into a ruin to test her39 He said unto her, 'I sense the smell of radish40 in Galilee.'41
Baba Bathra 146b
She said to him, 'Would that one gave me of the dates of Jericho and I would eat with it.'1 [Thereupon] the ruin fell upon her and she died. The Sages decided:2 Since he only followed her in order to test her,3 he is not [entitled to be] her heir [if] she died [during the test]4
FEW PRESENTS WHICH SHE WAS TO USE AT THE HOUSE OF HER FATHER, ETC. Rabin the elder sat before R. Papa and stated [the following]: Whether she died, or he died, [or] he retracted,5 the wedding gifts are to be returned, foodstuff[s] and drink[s]6 are not to be returned. If [however] she retracted, even a bundle of vegetables [must be returned]. R. Huna the son of R. Joshua said: And it is valued for them7 at the cheap[er] price of meat,8 Up to how much is [considered] cheap? — Up to a third.9
MISHNAH. IF A DYING MAN GAVE ALL HIS PROPERTY IN WRITING, TO OTHERS, AND LEFT [FOR HIMSELF] SOME [PIECE OF] LAND10 HIS GIFT11 IS VALID.12 [IF, HOWEVER,] HE DID NOT LEAVE [FOR HIMSELF] SOME [PIECE OF] LAND, HIS GIFT IS INVALID13
GEMARA. Who is the Tanna [that holds the view] that the assumed motive14 is a determining factor?15 — R. Nahman replied: It [is the view of] R. Simeon b. Menasya. For it was taught: In the case of [a person] whose son went to a distant country16 and having heard that the latter had died. assigned all his property, in writing. to a stranger. though his son subsequently appeared. his gift is. [nevertheless]. legally] valid.17 R. Simeon b. Menasya said: His gift is not [legally] valid; for had he known that his son was alive, he would not have given it away.18
R. Shesheth said: It [is the view of] R. Simeon Shezuri.19 For It was taught: At first it was held [that] when one who was led out in chains,20 said, 'Write a bill of divorce for my wife', It is to be written and delivered [to her];21 later, however, It was held22 [that the same law applies] also [to] one who goes out [to sea] or on a caravan [journey]. R. Simeon Shezuri said: [The same law] also [applies to one] who is dangerously [ill]23
For what reason, however, does not R. Nahman establish it24 in accordance with [the view of] R. Simeon Shezuri? — There [the case is] different, since he said, 'write'.25 And why does not R. Shesheth establish it24 in accordance with [the view of] R. Simeon b. Menasya? — A well grounded assumption26 is different.27
Who is the author of the following ruling28 which was taught by our Rabbis? 'If a person was lying ill in bed, and was asked, "To whom [shall] your estate [be given]?" and he replied
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