FOOLISH WOMEN? Are they not merely IN A STATE OF PERPLEXITY?1 — Rather read: Women who are in a state of perplexity. For2 it was taught: [If a woman is alternately] unclean on one day and clean on the next,3 she may perform her marital duty4 on the eighth day,5 the night following being included,6 and on four nights out of every eighteen days.7 If, however, she observed any issue in the evening,8 she performs her marital duty on the eighth day9 only.10 [If she is alternately] unclean11 for two days and clean for two days, she may perform her marital duty on the eighth,12 the twelfth,13 the sixteenth14 and the twentieth.15 But why is she not allowed to perform her marital duty on the nineteenth?16 — R. Shesheth replied: This17 proves that the 'gluttony'18 of which we have learnt19 is forbidden. R. Ashi20 replied: Granted that the eleventh day21 requires no safeguard,22 the tenth day23 at any rate does require a safeguard.24 If she is alternately unclean for three days and clean for three days, she may perform her marital duty on two days25 and may never again perform it.26 If she is alternately unclean for four days and clean for four days she performs her marital duty on one day,27 and may never again perform it.28 If she is alternately unclean for five days and clean for five days, she performs her marital duty on three days29 and may never again perform it.28 If she is alternately unclean for six days and clean for six days she performs her marital duty on five days30 and may never again perform it.28 If she is alternately unclean for seven days and clean for seven days, she may perform her marital duty during a quarter of her lifetime, [seven days]31 out of each twenty-eight days.32 If she is alternately unclean for eight days and clean for eight days, she may perform her marital duty on fifteen days33 out of every forty-eight days.34 But is not the number35 fourteen?36 — R. Adda b. Isaac replied: This proves that the days of her menstruation in which she observes no discharge37 are reckoned in the counting38 prescribed for her zibah;39 for the question was raised:
Original footnotes renumbered. See Structure of the Talmud Files
- V. supra p. 373, n. 6.
- The following series of rules applies to the WISE ONES of which R. Joshua spoke.
- Sc. is discharging blood every alternate day.
- If the discharge never occurs in the night.
- Counting from the one on which her first discharge was observed. On the eighth day her cleanness is established beyond any possible doubt since her unclean period of menstruation terminated with the seventh, and the eighth is one of her alternate clean days.
- Lit., 'and its night with it', since (cf. Prev. n. but one) she never discharges any blood in the night.
- Again counting from the day of the first discharge (cf. prev. n. but one). As she never discharges on three consecutive days she can never become a major zabah (who must allow seven clean days to pass before she can attain cleanness). When she discharges on the ninth day (one of the alternate unclean days) she, as a minor zabah (the discharge having taken place within the eleven days of the zibah period which began on the eighth), must allow one clean day (the tenth) to pass and may perform her marital duty in the night following it. Observing a discharge on the eleventh day (one of the alternate unclean days) she allows the twelfth day to pass and performs her duty in the night that follows. Similarly she may perform her marital duty on the nights following respectively the fourteenth and the sixteenth. By the time eighteen days have passed with the sunset of the eighteenth day she has, in addition to the eighth day and night following it, the four nights that follow respectively the tenth, twelfth, fourteenth and sixteenth day. The night following the eighteenth day is again one in which performance of marital duty is permitted, but it belongs to the next cycle. On the nineteenth, the seven days of menstruation begin again and the cycle is repeated.
- Of the alternate unclean days.
- After her first discharge, sc. the day and the night preceding it. On the day she is definitely clean since her discharge does not appear until evening, and in the previous night she is also clean since with the day preceding it (the seventh) her unclean menstruation period had come to an end.
- During the first seven days she is unclean as a menstruant and in the night following the eighth (one of the alternate unclean nights) she is unclean as a minor zabah (the zibah period having commenced on the eighth) and must consequently allow one day, the ninth, to pass. On the night following the ninth (another of the alternate unclean nights) she is again unclean as a minor zabah and must again allow a day, the tenth, to pass, and so on until the termination of eighteen days when a new cycle of the same number of days begins in which again she is allowed marital duty on the eighth day and the night preceding it only.
- The discharge making its appearance (as is also the case in all the following rulings) in the evenings.
- Which (with the night preceding) is the second of the two alternating clean days and (unlike the first of these two days) follows the immersion on the seventh day of the unclean seven days of the menstruation period.
- The preceding night included, On the ninth and the tenth (two of the alternating unclean days) she is (since these days are within her zibah period) a minor zabah and must in consequence allow the eleventh also to pass, performing immersion in the evening of that day and thus attaining cleanness on the twelfth.
- Including also the night preceding it. On the thirteenth and fourteenth (cf. prev. n. mut. mut.) she is a minor zabah, the fifteenth is the day she must allow to pass and in the evening of which she performs immersion and attains cleanness by the sixteenth.
- Cf, prev. n. mut. mut. The uncleanness on the twenty-first and twenty-second is already part of a menstruation period and belongs to the next cycle.
- The day following the eleventh day of the zibah period, which (as stated infra 72b) need not be passed before cleanness is attained.
- The prohibition of marital intercourse on the nineteenth.
- Lit., 'glutton'.
- Infra 72a: If a woman observed a discharge on the eleventh day of her zibah period, and performed immersion on the twelfth, and, after intercourse, again observed a discharge, her husband (who had not the patience to allow the twelfth day to pass) is described by Beth Hillel as a glutton.
- Maintaining that 'gluttony' is not forbidden,
- Of the zibah period (the eighteenth in the cycle).
- Sc. allowing one clean day to pass after it before cleanness is attained.
- The seventeenth in the cycle which is also one of the two alternating unclean days.
- Cf. prev. n. but one. As the day following it (the eleventh of zibah or the eighteenth in the cycle) is an unclean one, the next clean day (the nineteenth in the cycle) must be allowed to pass as a safeguard. Hence it is that marital intercourse cannot in this case be permitted before the twentieth.
- The eleventh and twelfth after her first discharge. On the first seven days she is unclean as a menstruant, on the eighth and the ninth (two of the alternating three unclean days) being within the eleven days of the zibah period, she is unclean as a minor zabah, and the tenth must be allowed to pass as a safeguard against these days.
- Since after the twelfth day she will never attain cleanness. The thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth (three of the alternating three unclean days) will be unclean days within her zibah period that subject her to the restrictions of a major zabah who cannot attain cleanness before seven clean days have passed, but (owing to these three alternating unclean days) she will never experience a full period of seven clean days.
- The eighth, the first day after her first unclean menstruation period, which is the last of the second group of four clean days.
- Cf. prev. n, but one mut. mut.
- The eighth, ninth and tenth (immediately following the first menstruation period) being the last three of the first group of five clean days.
- The eighth to twelfth. Cf. prev. n. mut. mut.
- That follow the unclean seven days of the menstruation period.
- Made up as follows: Seven unclean days of menstruation, seven days of cleanness (in which marital intercourse is permitted), seven days of uncleanness in which the woman becomes a major zabah and seven days that must be counted after the confirmed zibah; and so on with each cycle of twenty-eight days.
- The tenth to the sixteenth (seven days), the twenty-sixth to the thirty-second (seven days) and the forty-eighth (7 + 7 + 1 = 15 days). Cf. foll. n.
- Composed as follows: Eight unclean days (the last of which being the first of the eleven days of zibah turns the woman into a minor zabah); one day (the first of the second group of eight days) that must be allowed to pass by a minor zabah before cleanness is attained, and seven clean days in which marital intercourse is permitted; two days (the first of the third group of eight days) of zibah (being the last two of the eleven days of the first zibah period) and six days of the second menstruation period; one day (the first of the fourth group of eight days) completing the seventh day of menstruation, and seven days in which marital intercourse is permitted; eight days of uncleanness (the fifth group of eight days during the first three of which she becomes a major zabah); seven days (the first of the sixth group) that serve as the number of days prescribed for a major zabah and one day (the last of the sixth group and the forty-eighth day in the cycle) in which marital intercourse is permitted.
- Lit. 'behold they are', the days on which marital intercourse is permitted.
- Since the forty-eighth day should be excluded. It is now assumed that in the sixth group of eight days five clean days only are available for the prescribed counting, since the first three days of the group completed a menstruation period that began on the fifth day of the fifth group, and, since seven clean days have not yet passed, the forty-eighth, as the day following it, should be equally forbidden for marital intercourse.
- As is the case with the first three days of the sixth group in which she was clean.
- Sc. of the seven days.
- Since the counting thus begins with the first day of the sixth group of eight days it terminates (cf. prev. n.) on the seventh. On the eighth day, the forty-eighth of the cycle, the woman having attained cleanness and undergone immersion on the preceding night, marital intercourse is permitted.
May the days succeeding childbirth1 on which the woman observes no discharge2 be reckoned in the counting prescribed for her zibah?3 R. Kahana replied, Come and hear: If a woman4 observed a discharge on two days, and on the third day she miscarried but was unaware what she miscarried, behold this is a case of doubtful zibah and doubtful birth5 and6 she must bring a sacrifice7 which may not be eaten8 while the days succeeding her childbirth9 on which she observes no discharge are reckoned in the counting prescribed for her zibah.10 R. Papa retorted: There11 the case is quite different,12 since it might be assumed11 that she gave birth to a male child,13 so that all the extra seven days that we impose upon her14 may well be reckoned in the counting prescribed for her zibah.15 Said R. Huna son of R. Joshua to R. Papa: Is there11 only the doubt of having given birth to a male child, and is there no doubt as to the possibility of the birth of a female child?16 But the fact is that17 you may well infer from here that they18 may be reckoned.19 This is conclusive.
If a woman is alternately unclean for nine days and clean for nine days she may have marital intercourse on eight days out of every eighteen days.20 If she is alternately unclean for ten days and clean for ten days, the days in which she is permitted marital intercourse are the same in number as the days of her zibah.21 And the same22 applies to cycles of a hundred23 and so also to cycles of a thousand.24
MISHNAH. THE BLOOD OF A MENSTRUANT AND THE FLESH OF A CORPSE CONVEY UNCLEANNESS WHEN WET AND WHEN DRY. BUT THE ISSUE, PHLEGM AND SPITTLE OF A ZAB, A DEAD CREEPING THING, A CARCASS AND SEMEN CONVEY UNCLEANNESS WHEN WET BUT NOT WHEN DRY. IF, HOWEVER, ON BEING SOAKED, THEY ARE CAPABLE OF REVERTING TO THEIR ORIGINAL CONDITION THEY CONVEY UNCLEANNESS WHEN WET AND WHEN DRY. AND WHAT IS THE DURATION25 OF THEIR SOAKING?26 TWENTY-FOUR HOURS IN LUKEWARM WATER.27 R. JOSE RULED: IF THE FLESH OF A CORPSE IS DRY, AND ON BEING SOAKED CANNOT REVERT TO ITS ORIGINAL CONDITION, IT IS CLEAN.28
GEMARA. Whence are these rulings29 deduced? — Hezekiah replied: From Scripture which says, And of her that is sick with her impurity,30 her impurity31 is like herself, as she conveys her uncleanness so does her impurity convey similar uncleanness. Thus we find the law concerning wet blood,32 whence the deduction concerning dry blood? — R. Isaac replied: Scripture said, Be,33 it shall retain its original force.34 But might it not be suggested that this35 applies only to blood that was wet and then dried up; whence, however, the deduction that it applies also to blood that was originally36 dry? And, furthermore, with reference to what we have learnt, 'If a woman aborted an object that was like a rind, like earth, like a hair, like red flies, let her put it in water and if it dissolves she is unclean', whence is this37 deduced? — 'Be'38 is an inclusive statement.39 If [it be argued:] As she causes couch and seat to convey uncleanness to man and to his garments40 so should her blood also cause couch and garment to convey uncleanness to man and his garments. [it can be retorted:] Is then her blood capable of using a couch or a seat?41 — But according to your argument42 [it could also be objected]: Is a leprous stone43 capable of using a couch or a seat that a text should be required to exclude it?44 For it was taught. 'It might have been presumed that a leprous stone should cause a couch and a seat to convey uncleanness to man and to his garments, this being arrived at logically, for if a zab who does not convey uncleanness by means of entry45 causes couch and seat to convey uncleanness to man and to his garments, how much more then should a leprous stone, which does convey uncleanness by means of entry,46 convey uncleanness to couch and seat to convey it to man and his garments, hence it was specifically stated, He that hath the issue,47 implying only 'he that hath the issue' [is subject to the restriction]48 but not a leprous stone'. Now the reason49 is that Scripture has excluded it, but if that had not been the case it would have conveyed the uncleanness, would it not?50 — A reply may indeed be forthcoming from this very statement,51 for did you not say. 'He that hath the issue52 [is subject to the restriction] but not a leprous stone'? Well here also Scripture said, Whereon she sitteth,53 only she but not her blood.
Original footnotes renumbered. See Structure of the Talmud Files
- Which took place in zibah that immediately ceased.
- But is nevertheless Pentateuchally unclean.
- So that at the conclusion of seven days, and the due performance of immersion, she is exempt from the restrictions that are imposed upon a zabah.
- During the eleven days of her zibah period.
- Since it is possible that she gave birth to a proper child and that no bleeding accompanied it, in which case it is a valid birth and no zibah. It is equally possible that the birth was not that of a proper child and that it was accompanied by a flow of blood, in which case it is a proper zibah and no valid birth. It is also possible that the birth was a proper one and that it was accompanied by bleeding in which case it is both a valid birth and a proper zibah. It is equally possible that there was neither proper birth nor bleeding so that there was neither zibah nor valid birth.
- Adopting the most restrictive course in order to meet all possible circumstances,
- In case the birth was a valid one.
- Since it is possible that the birth was not valid, that in consequence no sacrifice was required, and that the bird that was mistakenly killed in the manner prescribed for a sacrifice was, therefore, nebelah,
- During the first fourteen days of which, since it is possible that the birth was that of a female, the woman is unclean even though no discharge was observed,
- To the restrictions of which she is subject on account of the possibility that the miscarriage was accompanied by bleeding. Thus it has been shown that the days succeeding childbirth on which no discharge is observed are reckoned in the counting prescribed for a zabah.
- In the case just cited by R. Kahana where uncertainties exist,
- From that discussed supra 54a where no doubtful factor is involved,
- After the birth of whom a woman is unclean for seven days only.
- A total of fourteen days as a precaution against the possibility that the birth was that of a female child.
- Had it, however, been certain that the birth was that of a female child (similar to the certainty supra 54a) the days succeeding birth could not be reckoned in the counting prescribed for a zabah.
- Of course there is. The birth of the latter is as possible as the birth of the former and the possibility, therefore, exists that the woman is unclean for fourteen days.
- Lit., 'but not'.
- The days succeeding a childbirth during which no discharge is observed.
- In the seven days prescribed for a zabah.
- In the first group of nine days she is a menstruant during the first seven days and a minor zabah on the last two days; and in the second group of nine days she allows the first day to pass (as prescribed for a minor zabah) while in the remaining eight days, being fully clean, she is permitted marital intercourse. The same process is repeated in every cycle of eighteen day.
- During the first ten days she is a menstruant for seven days and a zabah during the last three days, while during the second group of ten days she counts the prescribed seven days and has three days left in which she is clean and permitted marital intercourse. The three latter days are thus equal in number to the three days of her zibah.
- That the number of days in which marital intercourse is permitted is equal to the number of the days of zibah.
- The woman is menstrual during the first seven days of the first hundred and is a zabah during the remaining ninety-three days, while the first seven days of the second hundred are counted as the days prescribed after the zibah and in the remaining ninety-three days she is permitted marital intercourse.
- Cf. prev. n. mut. mut.
- Sc. the maximum time.
- To cause them to be regarded as CAPABLE OF REVERTING TO THEIR ORIGINAL CONDITION.
- But if they do not resume their original freshness unless soaked for a longer time or in warmer water they convey uncleanness when wet only.
- V. Gemara.
- That the blood of menstruation conveys uncleanness by contact and carriage.
- Lev. XV, 33, emphasis on 'her' and 'impurity'.
- Sc. menstrual blood.
- Which is its natural state when discharged from the body.
- Her issue … be blood (Lev. XV, 19).
- Lit., 'in its being it shall be'.
- Retention of its original force.
- Sc. when it was discovered. Cf. the cited Mishnah that follows.
- That subsequent solution renders the originally dry object unclean.
- Her issue … be blood (Lev. XV, 29).
- Covering all the objects mentioned.
- Sc. she does not merely convey to them an uncleanness of a degree next to, and lower than her own but one, that of 'father of uncleanness', which is on a par with hers. Only a 'father of uncleanness' can effect the uncleanness of a man.
- Of course not. The analogy, therefore, cannot be drawn.
- That since blood cannot use a couch or a seat it cannot cause it to be a 'father of uncleanness'.
- Cf. Lev. XIV, 34ff.
- From the restriction of causing a couch and a seat to become 'fathers of uncleanness'.
- If a clean person enters with a zab into the same house the former does not thereby become unclean.
- Cf. Lev. XIV, 46.
- Lev. XV, 4.
- Of causing couch and seat to convey uncleanness to man and his garments.
- Why a leprous stone was excluded from the restriction (cf. prev. n.).
- Though it is not capable of using couch or seat.
- Lit., 'and from it'.
- Lev. XV, 4.
- Lev. XV. 23. emphasis on 'she'.