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Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Baba Kamma
So also did R. Judah exempt him from all the judgments of the Torah. What is the reason of R. Judah? — Scripture says: Then the congregation shall judge between the smiter and the avenger of blood according to these ordinances,1 whoever is subject to the law of the 'smiter' and 'the avenger of blood' is subject to judgments, but he2 who is not subject to the law of the 'smiter' and the 'avenger of blood' is not subject to judgments.
Another [Baraitha] taught: R. Judah.says: 'A blind person is not subject to [the law of] Degradation. So also did R. Judah exempt him from all commandments stated in the Torah.' R. Shisha the son of R. Idi said: The reason of R. Judah was because Scripture says: Now this is the commandment, the statutes and the ordinances;3 he who is subject to the 'ordinances' is subject to 'commandments' and 'statutes', but he who is not subject to 'ordinances' is not subject to 'commandments' and 'statutes'. R. Joseph stated:4 Formerly I used to Say: If someone would tell me that the halachah is in accordance with R. Judah who declared that a blind person is exempt from the commandments, I would make a festive occasion for our Rabbis, because though I am not enjoined5 I still perform commandments, but now that I have heard the statement of R. Hanina, as R. Hanina indeed said6 that greater is the reward of those who being enjoined do [good deeds] than of those who without being enjoined [but merely of their own free will] do [good deeds], if someone would tell me that the halachah is not in accordance with R. Judah I would make a festive occasion for our Rabbis, because if I am enjoined to perform commandments the reward will be greater for me.
MISHNAH. ON THIS [POINT] THE LAW FOR MAN IS MORE SEVERE THAN THE LAW FOR CATTLE, VIZ., THAT MAN HAS TO PAY FOR DEPRECIATION, PAIN, HEALING, LOSS OF TIME AND DEGRADATION;7 AND HE PAYS ALSO FOR THE VALUE OF EMBRYOS,8 WHEREAS IN THE CASE OF CATTLE THERE IS NO PAYMENT FOR ANYTHING BUT DEPRECIATION,9 AND THERE IS EXEMPTION FROM [PAYING] THE VALUE OF EMBRYOS.8 ONE WHO STRIKES HIS FATHER AND HIS MOTHER WITHOUT, HOWEVER, MAKING A BRUISE ON THEM,10 OR ONE WHO INJURED HIS FELLOW ON THE DAY OF ATONEMENT11 IS LIABLE FOR ALL [THE FIVE ITEMS]. ONE WHO INJURES A HEBREW SLAVE12 IS SIMILARLY LIABLE FOR ALL OF THEM, WITH THE EXCEPTION, HOWEVER, OF LOSS OF TIME IF HE IS HIS OWN SLAVE. ONE WHO INJURES A CANAANITE SLAVE13 BELONGING TO ANOTHER PERSON IS [SIMILARLY] LIABLE FOR ALL [THE FIVE ITEMS]. R. JUDAH, HOWEVER, SAYS THAT NO DEGRADATION IS PAID IN THE CASE OF [CANAANITE] SLAVES. A DEAF-MUTE, AN IDIOT AND A MINOR ARE AWKWARD TO DEAL WITH, AS HE WHO INJURES THEM IS LIABLE [TO PAY], WHEREAS IF THEY INJURE OTHERS THEY ARE EXEMPT. [SO ALSO] A SLAVE AND A [MARRIED] WOMAN ARE AWKWARD TO DEAL WITH, AS HE WHO INJURES THEM IS LIABLE [TO PAY], WHEREAS IF THEY INJURE OTHERS THEY ARE EXEMPT,14 THOUGH THEY MAY HAVE TO PAY AT A LATER DATE; FOR IF THE WOMAN WAS DIVORCED15 OR THE SLAVE MANUMITTED,16 THEY WOULD BE LIABLE TO PAY. HE WHO SMITES HIS FATHER OR HIS MOTHER MAKING ALSO A BRUISE ON THEM17 OR HE WHO INJURES ANOTHER ON THE SABBATH18 IS EXEMPT FROM ALL [THE FIVE ITEMS], FOR HE IS CHARGED WITH A CAPITAL OFFENCE.19 [SO ALSO] HE WHO INJURES A CANAANITE SLAVE OF HIS OWN IS EXEMPT FROM ALL [THE ITEMS].20
GEMARA. R. Eleazar inquired of Rab: If one injures a minor daughter of another person, to whom should [the payment for] the injury go?21 Shall we say that since the Divine Law bestowed upon the father [the right to] the income of [his daughter during the days of her] youth,22 the payment for an injury should also be his, the reason being that her value was surely decreased [by the injury], or [shall we say that it was] perhaps only the income of youth23 that the Divine Law granted him, since if he wishes to hand her over [in marriage e.g.,] to one afflicted with leprosy he could hand her over,24 whereas the payment for injury might not have been granted to him by the Divine Law, since if he wishes to injure her he would not have had the right to injure her?25
Baba Kamma 87b
— He replied: 'The Torah did not bestow upon the father [any right] save to the income of youth alone.'
An objection was raised1 [from the following]: ONE WHO INJURES A HEBREW SLAVE IS SIMILARLY LIABLE FOR ALL OF THEM, WITH THE EXCEPTION HOWEVER OF LOSS OF TIME IF HE IS HIS OWN SLAVE!2 — Abaye replied: Rab surely agrees regarding the item of Loss of Time, as the work of her hands during the period preceding the age of womanhood3 belongs to her father. A [further] objection was raised [from the following]: 'If one injures his son who has already come of age4 he has to compensate him straight away, but if his son was still a minor5 he must make for him a safe investment [out of the compensation money], while he who injures his minor daughter is exempt, and what is more, if others injure her they are liable to pay the compensation to her father'?6 — The rulings here similarly refer to Loss of Time.7
Is it really a fact that in the case of a son who has already come of age the father has to compensate him straight away? [If so,] a contradiction could be pointed out [from the following:] 'If one injures the sons and daughters of others, if they have already come of age, he has to pay them straight away, but if they are still minors he should make for them a safe investment [out of the compensation money], whereas where the sons and daughters were his own, he would be exempt [altogether]'!8 — It may, however, be said that there is no difficulty, as the ruling here [stating exemption] refers to a case where the children still reclined at the father's table,9 whereas the ruling there10 deals with a case where they did not recline at his table. But how could you explain the former teaching to refer to a case where they did not recline at his table? For if so, read the concluding clause: 'Whereas he who injures his minor daughter is exempt, and what is more, even others who injure her are liable to pay the compensation to her father.' Why not pay her, since she has to maintain herself? For even according to the view11 that a master may say to his slave, 'Work with me though I am not prepared to maintain you,' surely this applies only to a Canaanite slave to whom the master can say, 'Do your work during the day and in the evenings you can go out and look about for food,'12 whereas in the case of a Hebrew slave in connection with whom it is written, Because he fareth well with thee,13 implying 'with thee in food and with thee in drink',14 this could certainly not be maintained; how much the more so then in the case of his own daughter?15 — As stated16 [in another connection] by Raba the son of R. 'Ulla, that the ruling applies only to the surplus [of the amount of her earnings over the cost of maintenance], so also here in this case this ruling applies only to the surplus [of the amount of compensation over the cost of maintenance]. You have then explained the latter statement [that there is exemption in the case of his own children] as dealing with a case where the children reclined at his table. Why then [in the case of children of other persons] is it stated that 'if they had already come of age he has to pay them straight away, but if they were still minors he should make for them a safe investment [out of the compensation money]? Why should the compensation not be made to their father?17 — It may, however, be said that the father would be particular only in a matter which would cause him a loss,18 whereas in regard to a profit coming from outside19 he would not mind [it going to the children]. But what about a find which is similarly a profit coming from outside, and the father still is particular about it?20 — It may be said that he is particular even about a profit which comes from outside provided no actual pain was caused to the children through it,21 whereas in the matter of compensation for injury where the children suffered actual pain and where the profit comes from outside he does not mind. But what of the other case22 where the daughter suffered actual pain and where there was a profit coming from outside and the father nevertheless was particular about it as stated 'What is more, even others who injure her are liable to pay the compensation to her father'? — It may still be said that it was only in that case22 where the father was an eccentric person who would not have his children at his table that he could be expected to care for the matter of profit coming even from outside, whereas in the case here23 where he was not an eccentric person, as his children joined him at his table it is only regarding a matter which would cause him a loss that he would be particular, but he would not mind about a matter of profit coming from outside.
Resh Lakish similarly said that the Torah did not bestow upon the father any right save to the income of youth alone. R. Johanan however said: 'Even regarding wounding.' How can you think about wounding?27 Even R. Eleazar did not raise a question28 except regarding an injury
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