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Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Kethuboth
Could R. Judah hold the view that [a female captive] is deemed to have retained her virginity1 when it was, in fact, taught. 'If a woman proselyte discovered [some menstrual] blood2 on [the day of] her conversion it is sufficient, R. Judah ruled, [to reckon her Levitical uncleanness from] the time she [discovered it].3 R. Jose ruled: She is subject to the same laws4 as all other women5 and, therefore, causes uncleanness [retrospectively] for twenty-four hours,6 or [for the period] intervening between7 [her last] examination and7 [her previous] examination.8 She must also wait9 three months;10 so R. Judah. but R. Jose permits her to be betrothed and married at once'?11 — The other replied: You are pointing out a contradiction between a proselyte and a captive [who belong to totally different categories, since] a proselyte does not protect her honour while a captive does protect her honour.
A contradiction, however, was also pointed out between two rulings in relation to a captive.12 For it was taught: Proselytes,13 captives13 or slaves13 who were ransomed, or proselytized. or were manumitted, must wait three months14 if they were older than three years and one day; so R. Judah. R. Jose permits immediate betrothal and marriage.15 [The other] remained silent. 'Have you'. he said to him, 'heard anything on the subject?' — 'Thus', the former replied. 'said R. Shesheth: [This is a case] where people saw that the captive was seduced'. If so16 what could be R. Jose's reason? — Rabbah replied: R. Jose is of the opinion that a woman who plays the harlot makes use of an absorbent in order to prevent conception. This17 is intelligible in the case of a proselyte, who, since her intention is to proselytize, is careful.18 It17 is likewise [intelligible in the case of] a captive [who is also careful]18 since she does not know whither they would take her.19 It17 is similarly [intelligible in the case of] a bondwoman [who might also be careful]18 when she hears from her master.20 What, however, can be said in the case of one who is liberated on account of the loss of a tooth or an eye?21 And were you to suggest that R. Jose did not speak22 of an unexpected occurrence,23 [it might be retorted,] there is the case of a woman who was outraged or seduced24 which may happen unexpectedly and yet it was taught: A woman who has been outraged or seduced must wait three months; so R. Judah, but R. Jose permits immediate betrothal and marriage!25 — The fact, however, is, said Rabbah,26 that R. Jose is of the opinion that a woman who plays the harlot turns over in order to prevent conception.27 And the other?28 — There is the apprehension that she might not have turned over properly.29
FOR IT IS SAID IN SCRIPTURE, AND YET NO HARM FOLLOW HE SHALL BE SURELY FINED etc. Is, however, the deduction30 made from this text?31 Is it not in fact made from the following text:32 According to the measure of his crime,33 [which implies]34 you make him liable to a penalty35 for one crime, but you cannot make him liable [at the same time] for two crimes?36 — One [text37 deals] with [the penalties of] death and money and the other38 with [the penalties of] flogging and money.
And [both texts39 were] needed. For if we had been told [only of that which deals with the penalties of] death and money37 it might have been assumed [that the restriction40 applied only to the death penalty] because it involves loss of life,41 but not [to the penalties of] flogging and money where no loss of life is involved. And if we had been told only of flogging and money38 it might have been assumed [that the restriction40 applied only to flogging] because the transgression for which flogging is inflicted42 is not very grave,43 but not [to the penalties of] death and money where the transgression for which the death penalty is imposed42 is very grave.44 [Hence it was] necessary [to have both texts].
and the other1 with those of death and flogging. And [both texts were] needed. For if we had been told [only of that which deals with the penalties of] death and money it might have been assumed [that the restriction2 applied to these two penalties only] because we must not inflict one penalty upon one's body and another upon one's possessions, but in the case of death and flogging, both of which are inflicted on one's body, it might have been assumed [that the flogging] is deemed to be [but] one pro tracted death penalty and both may, therefore, be inflicted upon one man.3 And if we had been told about death and flogging only [the restriction4 might have been assumed to apply to these penalties only] because no two corporal punishments may be inflicted on the same person, but in the case of the penalties of death and money one of which is corporal and the other monetary it might have been assumed that both may be inflicted.5 [Both texts were, therefore,] necessary.
What need was there6 for the Scriptural text, Moreover ye shall take no ransom for the life of a murderer?7 — The All-Merciful has here stated: You shall take no monetary fine from him and thus exempt him from the death penalty.
What was the need8 for the Scriptural text, And ye shall take no ransom for him that is fled to his city of refuge'?9 — The All-Merciful has here stated: You shall take no monetary fine from him to exempt him from exile.10
But why two texts?11 — One deals with unwitting, and the other with intentional [murder]. And [both texts] were required. For if we had been told12 of intentional murder13 only it might have been assumed [that the restriction12 applied to this case only], because the transgression for which death is inflicted14 is grave,15 but not to the one of unintentional murder where the transgression is not so grave. And if we had been told16 of unintentional murder17 is only it might have been assumed [that the restriction16 applied to this case only] because no loss of life is involved,18 but not to intentional murder where a loss of life19 is involved.20 [Both texts were consequently] required.
What was the object21 of the Scriptural text, And no expiation can be made for the land for the blood that is shed therein, but by the blood of him that shed it?22 — It was required for [the following deduction] as it was taught: Whence is it deduced that, if the murderer has been discovered after the heifer's neck had been broken,23 he is not to be acquitted?24 From the Scriptural text, 'And no expiation can be made for the land for the blood that is shed therein etc.'25
Then what was the need26 for the text, So shalt thou put away the innocent blood front the midst of thee?27 — It is required for [the following deduction] as it was taught: Whence is it deduced that execution by the sword28 must be at the neck? It was explicitly stated in Scripture, 'So shalt thou put away the innocent blood from the midst of thee', all who shed blood are compared to the atoning heifer:29 As its head is cut30 at the neck31 so [is the execution of] those who shed blood at the neck.32 If [so, should not the comparison be carried further]: As there33 [its head is cut] with an axe and at the nape of the neck so here34 too? — R. Nahman answered in the name of Rabbah b. Abbuha: Scripture said, But thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself,35 choose for him an easy death.36
What need was there37 for the Scriptural text, None devoted, that may be devoted of men, shall be ransomed?38 — It is required for [the following] as it was taught: Whence is it deduced that, when a person was being led to his execution,39 and someone said, 'I vow to give his value40 [to the Temple].' his vow is null and void?41 [From Scripture] wherein it is said, 'None devoted, that may be devoted of man, shall be redeemed'.42 As it might [have been presumed that the same law applied] even before his sentence had been pronounced43 it was explicitly stated: 'Of men',44 but not 'all men'.45
According to R. Hanania b. 'Akabia, however, who ruled that the [age] value of such a person46 may be vowed47 because its price is fixed,48 what deduction does he49 make from the text of 'None devoted'?50 — He requires it for [the following deduction] as it was taught: R. Ishmael the son of R. Johanan b. Beroka said, Whereas we find that those who incur the penalty of death at the hand of heaven51 may pay a monetary fine and thereby obtain atonement, for it is said in Scripture, If there be laid down on him a sum of money,52 it might [have been assumed that] the same law applied also [to those who are sentenced to death] at the hands of men,53 hence it was explicitly stated in the Scriptures. 'None … devoted54 of men shall be redeemed'. Thus we know the law only concerning55 severe death penalties56 since [they are imposed for offences] which cannot be atoned for57 if committed unwittingly;58 whence, [however. is it inferred that the same law applies also to] lighter death penalties59 seeing that [they are for offences] that may be atoned for60 if committed unwittingly?61 It was explicitly stated in Scripture, 'None devoted'.62 But could not this63 be inferred independently from Ye shall take no ransom64 which implies: You shall take no money from him to exempt him [from death]?65 What need was there for 'None devoted'? — Rami b. Hama replied: It was required. Since it might have been assumed
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