ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler of Kollel Iyun Hadaf
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
(a) The Tana Kama, discussing a woman who accompanies her husband overseas and who returns with the news that her husband is dead, permits her to remarry on two conditions. One of them is that she and her husband left on good terms; the other - that there is peace in the world at large (See Tos. Yom-Tov).
(b) The reason for the first condition is out of concern that she may otherwise hate him, and simply be trying to render herself forbidden to him. If there is peace in the world, we are not afraid that she is lying - because, since she has nothing concrete on which to blame her husband's delay in returning, she will be afraid that, should she declare him dead, he may well turn up, and her future will be ruined (as we will learn shortly).
(c) One reason that we do not believe her when there is no peace in the world is because she may simply assume that, since her husband took so long in returning, he must have been killed by robbers. The other - because saw him wounded in battle, as assumes that he died from his wounds, without verifying that he did.
(d) What if one of the above conditions is missing - she will not be allowed to remarry.
(e) The Tana says - the same about her making Yibum, when it is relevant, as to her remarrying (See Tiferes Yisrael).
(a) Rebbi Yehudah qualifies the Tana Kama's ruling - by confining to where she appears before the Beis-Din in tears and with her clothes torn (as a sign of mourning),
(b) The Tana Kama disagrees with him - because that would restrict the Takanah to a Pokachas, but preclude a Shotah (See Tos. Yom-Tov),
(c) The Halachah is - like the Tana Kama.
(a) Initially, Beis Hillel ruled that the woman is only believed on three conditions (to conform with the episode that prompted the Chachamim to believe her) - where a group of people went to harvest a field, from which one of the wives returned with the news that her husband had been bitten by a snake and died, After verifying her testimony, the Chachamim issued their Takanah.
(b) Consequently, said Beis Hillel, they only believed a woman who returned from the harvesting and claimed that her husband had been killed by a snake-bite. The third condition was - that she must have returned from the same country (See Tos. Yom-Tov).
(c) Beis Shamai countered that it makes no difference whether the woman comes from ...
1. ... the harvest or from picking olives or grapes, from ...
2. ... close by or from another country ...
(d) And the Chachamim only quoted the episode when issuing the ruling - because the details that it contain are the norm (but not to preclude other circumstances).
(e) The Halachah is like Beis Shamai - because Beis Hillel retracted from his initial ruling.
(a) Beis Shamai permit the woman, not only to get married, but also to receive her Kesubah. Beis Hillel initially rule - that she does notreceive her Kesubah.
(b) Beis Shamai argue that if the Chachamim permit her to remarry (which involves an Isur Arayos), how much more so will they permit her to receive her Kesubah (which is merely a monetary issue).
(c) Beis Hillel counter fact that the deceased man's brothers do not receive his inheritance either - since a monetary claim requires two witnesses.
(d) Beis Shamai's conclusive proof lies in the wording of the woman's Kesubah, which specifically states - that the moment hse remarries, she is entitled to claim what is written therein.
(e) The Halachah is like Beis Shamai - because Beis Hillel retracted.
(a) If it is not the woman herself who testifies that her husband has died but another single witness - the Din is the same (he is believed).
(b) The Mishnah lists five exceptions to this ruling, who are all not believed - because they hate the woman and cannot therefore be trusted ...
(c) ... since we are afraid that they will try to make her sin.
(a) Her mother-in-law hates her because in her heart her daughter-in-law 'eats up all her hard work', and her her sister-in-law' (her husband's sister) - becauseshe 'eats up all the hard work of her father (See Tos. Yom-Tov) and mother.
(b) If It is obvious why her 'Tzarah' (her rival wife) is not believed, her 'Yevamah (the wife of her husband's brother) is not believed - because she is afraid that her brother-in-law will die and she will fall to him for Yibum (and become her rival wife [See Tos. Yom-Tov]).
(c) The last of the five people who are not believed to testify that her husband died is - her husband's daughter, who hates her because 'he has taken up her mother's position and is eating up all her hard work'.
(d) In spite of the fact that the witnesses who bring a woman her Get from overseas need to testify in Beis-Din (that the Get was written and signed in front of him), these same women are believed to bring the same woman her Get from overseas - because their evidence has the backing of the Get.
(a) In a case where one witness testifies that the woman's husband died, and after she remarries, a second witness testifies that he is still alive - the Tana rules that she may remain married to her new husband.
(b) We qualify his statement however - by permitting them to marry even if the second witness testifies before they have done so.
(c) Because when the Mishnah says 'Lo Teitzei' - it really means that she does not leave the initial Heter to get married.
(a) In a case where, after ....
1.... one witness testifies that a man has dies, two witnesses come and testify that he is still alive - the Tana rules that, even if his wife has already remarried, she must go out (See Tos. Yom-Tov).
2. ... two witnesses testify that her husband has died, two witnesses come and testify that he is still alive - she is even permittedto marry Lechatchilah.
(b) In both of these last cases 'two witnesses' means - witnesses who are Pasul to testify under normal circumstances ...
(c) ... and the Mishnah is coming to teach us - that since the Torah permits the testimony of one witness, we permit even the testimony of a one who ius Pasul, and that now that we do, we go after the majority of witnesses to permit or forbid the woman to remarry.
(a) If two Tzaros arrive from overseas, one of whom claims that their husband has died, and the other, that he hasn't - the former one may remarry and receive her Kesubah, the latter may not (See Tos. Yom-Tov).
(b) In the event that one of the wives claims that he died, and the other, that he was killed, Rebbi Meir forbids them both to remarry seeing as, when all's said and done, their testimonies contradict one another (See Tos. Yom-Tov). Rebbi Yehudah and Rebbi Shimon permit both to remarry - since both agree that he is dead.
(c) The Halachah is - like Rebbi Yehudah and Rebbi Shimon.
(d) The Tana finally rules in a case where ...
1.... one witness testifies that a man died, and another witness testifies that he is still alive or where ...
2.... one woman testifies that a man died, and another woman (See Tos. Yom-Tov DH 'Eid Omer' & DH 'Ishah Omeres ... ') testifies that he is still alive - that the woman is forbidden to remarry (See Tos. Yom-Tov).
(a) In a case where a woman returns from a trip with her husband overseas and testifies that he has died - the Mishnah permits her to remarry and to receive her Kesubah, but not her Tzarah.
(b) in the event that he is a Kohen, Rebbi Tarfon permits her Tzarah to continue eating T'rumah - because just as she is not believed to allow the Tzarah to remarry, so too, is she not believed to disqualify her from eating T'rumah.
(c) Rebbi Akiva claims - that the only way to prevent the Tzarah from sinning is by forbidding her both to remarry and to eat T'rumah.
(d) The Halachah is - like Rebbi Tarfon.
(a) The Mishnah rules in a case where a woman claims that first her husband died and then her father-in-law - that she is permitted to remarry and to receive her Kesuvah, but that her mother-in-law is not ...
(b) ... since a woman is not believed with regard to her mother-in-law (as we learned earlier in the Perek [See Tos. Yom-Tov]).
(c) We might have thought that in this case, she is - since she first testified that her own husband died (See Tos. Yom-Tov).
(a) Assuming that her mother-in-law is a bas Yisrael who is married to a Kohen - Rebbi Tarfon permits her to continue eating T'rumah; Rebbi Akiva forbids it.
(b) The Halachah is - like Rebbi Tarfon.
(c) The same Tana'im argue over a case where a man cannot remember which one of five women he betrothed, and where each of the women claims that she is the betrothed. The simple option to escape the dilemma is - to marry them all.
(a) Should he not want to marry all five of them, he is obligated to give - five Gitin, one to each woman.
(b) According to Rebbi Tarfon, he places one Kesubah (See Tos. Yom-Tov) before all five leaving them to fight out who takes it. Rebbi Akiva maintains - that he has not fulfilled his duty until he places (a Get and) a Kesubah before each woman (See Tos. Yom-Tov).
(c) In a case where five people claim from someone who admits that he stole from one of them, but cannot remember from which one - the same Tana'im issue the same ruling (regarding whether he places what he stole before allof them (Rebbi Tarfon) or whether he must pay each one (Rebbi Akiva [See Tos. Yom-Tov]).
(d) The Halachah in these last two cases is - like Rebbi Akiva (See Tos. Yom-Tov).
(a) In a case where a woman goes overseas with her husband and their son, and she returns and testifies that both her husband and her son died, the difference as to which one died first will be - as to whether she is subject to Yibum (if her son died first) or not.
(b) The Tana now rules, assuming she claimed that ...
1. ... her husband died first and then her son - that she is not believed.
2. ... it was her son who died first - then she is not fully believed, but that we do take her testimony into account (le'Chumra)?
(c) Consequently - she is obligated to perform Chalitzah.
(d) Even though she is not believed in the latter case, she is believed in the former - since her testimony conforms with her previous Chazakah (of not being subject to Yibum).
(a) The Mishnah rules that, in a case where a woman testifies that she gave birth to a son overseas and that first ...
1. ... her son died and then her husband - she is believed.
2. ... her husband died and then her son - she is not believed (See Tos. Yom-Tov), but requires Chalitzah (See Tos. Yom-Tov).
(b) The reason for ...
1. ... the earlier ruling is - because she is merely corroborate her initial Chazakah of Chezkas Yibum.
2. ... the latter ruling is - because the Chachamim only believe her with regard to her husband having died, based on the Chazakah of 'Ishah Dayka u'Mins'va' (that a woman is meticulously careful before remarrying), but not with regard to exempting herself from Yibum (since sometimes she hates the Yavam).
(c) And the reason that she is obligated to make Chalitzah and not Yibum - is because we believe her le'Chumra, prohibiting her from marrying le'Shuk without at least Chalitzah.
(a) In a case where, after a woman testifies that her mother-in-law gave birth to a son (a brother to her husband) overseas, she claims that ...
1. ... her Yavam and then her husband died or that ...
2. ... her husband and then her Yavam died - the Tana rules that she is believed ...
(b) ... seeing as, either way, she is merely substantiating her initial Chazakah that she is Patur from Yibum.
(c) This ruling is based on the principle - 'ha'Peh sh'Asar hu ha'Peh she'Hitir' (the same mouth which forbade her [to get married, by testifying that her mother0-in-law gave birth to a son, now permits her [by now testifying that he died]).
(a) We have already learned why a woman who accompanies her husband and her brother-in-law overseas, then comes and testifies that they died (irrespective in which order), is not believed. The Tana rules a woman is not believed if she claims that her sister died, in order to make Yibum with her husband (See Tos. Yom-Yov).
(b) The Mishnah rules that a man is not believed, if he claims that ...
1. ... his brother died, in order to perform Yibum with his wife, or that ...
2. ... his wife died, in order to marry her sister.