ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler of Kollel Iyun Hadaf
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
SHABBOS 85 - Dedicated by Yakov and Chaya Tavin of Har Nof, Yerushalayim, in honor of the birth of their grandson Yitzchak Reuven Tavin and the engagement of their son Moshe to Ahuvah Sherman.
(a) Although the five seeds (that one is permitted to sow in a patch of six by six Tefachim) are hinted in the Pasuk in Yeshayah, the Shiur of six by six Tefachim is not. And Rebbi Chiya bar Aba Amar Rebbi Yochanan now learns from "Lo Sasig Gevul Re'acha Asher Gavlu Rishonim" - that we follow tradition even in scientific matters such as these (even though it is not 'Halachah le'Moshe mi'Sinai).
(b) Rebbi Shmuel bar Nachmeni Amar Rebbi Yonasan defines the "Rishonim" in the Pasuk as - the Emori'im and the Chivi, who were experts in horticulture.
(c) Rav Papa explains that the Chori could determine which land was good for which trees - by smelling it (which is what 'Chori' means), whereas the Chivi, says Rav Acha bar Yakov, could determine it by tasting it (like a snake [k'Chivya).
(d) When Rav Acha bar Yakov explained 'she'Na'asu B'nei Chorin mi'Nichseihen', he was referring to a Pasuk in Devarim, which records how the Bnei Eisav drove the Chori out of their land. Consequently, they became 'free' from working it.
(a) An 'Arugah' is - a patch of land.
(b) When Rav Asi says 'Arugah Tochah Shishah, Chutz mi'Gevulehah', he means - that the six by six Tefachim does not include the border surrounding the patch, on which the person watering the field would walk when performing his task.
(c) We support Rav Asi's ruling with a Beraisa, which states - that it is the inside of the Arugah that needs to be six Tefachim.
(d) Rebbi Yehudah gives the width of the surrounding border as the size of footsteps, which the Gemara explains to be one Tefach.
(e) His source is the Pasuk in Ekev: "ve'Hishkisa be'Raglecha ke'Gan ha'Yarak"?
(a) Rav establishes our Mishnah in the case of one solitary patch - not surrounded by other patches; because if it had been, then it would not have been possible to fill the entire rows with seeds. Why not? Because the row in one patch and the row beside it in the next patch will be less than three Tefachim apart.
(b) It would indeed be possible to plant five different seeds in a series of patches, but one would then only be able to plant half of each row - the one in the one patch, the north half , shall we say, and the one in the next patch, the south half.
(c) 'be'Memale es ha'Keranos' means that our Mishnah speaks when he completely fills two parallel rows of the patch (and plants only one seed in the middle of the two remaining rows).
(d) This is not how Rashi learned in the Mishnah, where he explained that he fills all four rows, but only nearly till the end, as we explained there. (See Maharsha, and Rashash).
(a) When we ask 've'Liz'ra me'Abra'i, ve'Lo Limli mi'Gava'i'?, we mean to ask - why Rav needs to establish our Mishnah in a case of Memalei' es ha'Keranos? Let him not fill the sides with seeds (only half of the sides, as we explained there), and this will enable him to fill his entire field with patches, instead of only one patch in the whole field (see Tosfos DH 've'Lizra')?
(b) We answer that the Chachamim - preferred this way for fear that, were they to permit sowing half the rows in the suggested manner, one may come to fill the entire row, thereby transgressing the Isur of Kil'ayim (thought it is obvious that one may fill one's field with as many rows as one likes, provided one leaves three Tefachim between every two rows; and Rav is speaking about sowing two rows which are only two Tefachim apart).
(a) 'Rosh Tor' is the concession to permit the tip of a patch of a vegetable field which grows diagonally into a field of wheat, for example, because, even though they feed from each other, the very shape of the Rosh Tor is a Siman of separation (similar to that in our Mishnah - see 84b 7c).
(b) In that case, asks the Gemara, why should it not also be permitted to fill the field with patches, and, instead of filling all the rows, or even half of each row, to fill the entire north and south rows of one patch, for example, and in the patches beside it, to sow only one seed in the middle of the row (which should be permitted because it resembles a Rosh Tor. By arranging the whole field in this way, he will be able to fill it with patches, half of whose rows are filled, the other half, with only one seed in the middle.
(c) Rosh Tor, answer the Gemara, only applies to a (large) field, but not to one single patch, which, due to its size, still looks as if the seeds are mixed. (Interestingly, the principle that governs Rosh Tor, does apply to two rows (even in a patch) when they are planted adjacent to each other, rather than parallel, as we explained in our Mishnah.)
(a) Shmuel permits what we referred to earlier as 'Makom Keranos' (in 4b) - he is not concerned that perhaps he will fill in the entire row with seeds, as Rav is. (The Lashon of the Gemara seems to go better with the explanation of Rabeinu Chananel, who explains Shmuel to mean that he turns the top of the growing vegetables of the one patch towards the north, and the row next to it in the other patch towards the south. This will be effective even if he does fill in the entire row.)
(a) Our Gemara was written in Bavel. However, it often quotes Amora'im who lived in Eretz Yisrael. They are generally known as the 'B'nei Ma'arva'.
(b) The B'nei Ma'arva asked whether, if one dug a deep furrow to cut through the patch, in which he wants to sow one of the five kinds of seeds, or even a sixth kind, whether, or not, the additional seeds create a mixture which negates the Heter of planting so many seeds in such a small area.
(c) Rav Asi will point out that the Mishnah in Kil'ayim speaks specifically about single rows of pumpkins and cucumbers, which have large branches. Consequently, one row of pumpkins or of cucumbers is considered an Irbuv; but that is not the case with smaller vegetables. Consequently, one furrow of vegetables which cuts through a vegetable patch, will not negate the Din of Arugah.
(d) Two alternate rows of pumpkins and cucumbers are permitted because two rows are considered like an entire field - and two fields one beside the other, is not called an Irbuv.
(a) Rebbi Yochanan suggests that, anyone who wishes to fill his entire field with vegetables, may arrange square patches of six by six Tefachim, with circles with a diameter of five Tefachim measured off inside the squares. He is permitted to fill the circle with one kind of seed, and each of the half-Tefach sides surrounding the circle, he may fill in with another kind of seed.
(b) According to Amri de'Bei Rav Yanai, he is nevertheless obligated to leave the Tefach border surrounding the patch, devoid of seeds.
(c) According to Rav Ashi, he is even permitted to fill in the Tefach border as well. However, he must be careful to plant the seeds there in the opposite direction to the seeds planted in the square surrounding the circle.
(d) No! Rebbi Yochanan will explain that, when the Beraisa specifies a square box in its description of an Arugah, it is not to preclude his circle, but to teach us that if the tip of the square box enters a field diagonally (Rosh Tor) it is permitted (Rashi suggests that we may be talking about a patch, and that Rebbi Yochanan holds of Rosh Tor even by a patch).
(a) The advantages of Rebbi Yochanan's circular patch over the square one of our Mishnah, are: 1. that one may fill in the entire circle (instead of just the one seed permitted by our Mishnah, and 2. that the half-Tefach surrounding it may likewise be filled in (presumably except for the corners) - as opposed to the one thin line of seeds permitted by the Mishnah.