1) THE NAMES OF SPICES
OPINIONS: Abaye and Rava disagree about the Halachah in the case of a forbidden item that became mixed with a permitted item. Abaye maintains that the status of the mixture is determined by the taste of the items; where the two items (such as new wine and grapes) have the same taste, it is considered a mixture of Min b'Mino (forbidden and permitted quantities of the same species are mixed together) and the entire mixture is forbidden with even a small amount of Yayin Nesech. Rava maintains that the status of the mixture is determined by the names of the items; since new wine and grapes are defined and labeled as different items, it is considered a mixture of Min b'she'Eino Mino (forbidden and permitted quantities of different species are mixed together) and the Yayin Nesech forbids the entire mixture only if its taste is noticeable in the mixture.
Abaye attempts to prove his opinion from the Mishnah in Orlah (2:10). The Mishnah there states that a combination of forbidden spices which have two or three different names but which are of the same species, or three different species of spices, which fall into a permitted food combine to form the minimum amount (i.e., Nosen Ta'am) which forbids the permitted food. Abaye says that this proves that taste is the determining factor in a mixture, even when the items have different names.
What does the Mishnah in Orlah mean when it refers to spices of different "names," and spices of different "species"?
(a) RASHI (DH Tavlin) gives as an example of three names of one species a case of white pepper, black pepper, and long pepper. They have different names, but they share the fact that they are all pepper. An example of the second case (three different types of spices) would be pepper, cumin, and cinnamon.
(b) TOSFOS (DH Tavlin (#2)) rejects Rashi's explanation. The Mishnah in Orlah continues and quotes Rebbi Shimon who says that whether the spices have three names and are of one type, or whether they are of three different types and have one name, they do not combine to forbid the food into which they fall. Tosfos points out that Rebbi Shimon's statement is difficult according to Rashi. In what case do three different types of things have the same name?
Tosfos points out that the Gemara commonly refers to a "name" as a category of prohibition (see Shabbos 102a, "Eno Min ha'Shem," and Makos 4b).
Tosfos therefore explains that the first case -- spices with two or three names that are of the same type -- refers to identical spices that are forbidden for different reasons. For example, there are three peppers, and one is a pepper of Kil'ayim, one is a pepper of Orlah, and one is a pepper of Terumah. The second case -- three different species with the same "name" -- refers to three different spices that are all prohibited for the same reason, such as pepper, cinnamon, and garlic that are all Kil'ayim.
The RITVA agrees with the explanation of Tosfos. He says that Rashi had a mistaken text in the Mishnah in Orlah. Rashi had the text that appears in the Gemara here, which states that the second case is one in which the spices are of three different types and have three different names. The Ritva explains that the proper text of the Mishnah reads explicitly, "... or three types with one name."
(c) The RAMBAM (in Perush ha'Mishnayos to Orlah 2:10) gives an explanation similar to that of Rashi. He explains the first part of the Mishnah exactly like Rashi, but he had the text of the Ritva which states that the second case is three types with one name. The Rambam explains, by way of example, that there are many types of Karpas that are all referred to as "Karpas," as well as various species of grass that are all called "Si'ah," even though they are different species of vegetation. The second case of the Mishnah refers to three different types of Karpas which are all called Karpas in some form.
In the same manner, the RAMBAN answers Tosfos' first question on Rashi's explanation from the statement of Rebbi Shimon. Tosfos asks that we do not find three different types of things which have the same name. The Ramban answers that we find that there is a type of vegetable called "Karpas of the garden," and an entirely different type of vegetable called "Karpas of the ashes." Along with another type of Karpas, it is possible to have three items with the same name, each referring to a different item. Tosfos' second question on Rashi's explanation, that "Shem" refers to a category of prohibition, is not difficult, because the word can have different meanings (including its literal meaning of "name"). (See PORAS YOSEF who refutes Tosfos' proof from the Yerushalmi.) (Y. MONTROSE)
2) THE "REI'ACH" OF A PROHIBITED ITEM
OPINIONS: The Gemara discusses a case in which a Nochri made holes in the top of his wine barrel in order to determine the amount of time it would keep fresh. Is a Jew allowed to smell this wine for the Nochri, or is that considered having benefit from Yayin Nesech?
TOSFOS (DH Yisrael) points out that the Gemara must be referring to a case in which the Jew smells the wine for free, and the Nochri does not consider this as a favor from the Jew for which he owes his gratitude, because otherwise this act would be forbidden (the Jew would be receiving tangible benefit for working with Yayin Nesech).
Abaye answers that smell is included in the prohibition against deriving benefit from Yayin Nesech. Rava argues that smelling the wine is permitted, because smell is not considered a benefit, and thus the Jew who smells the wine does not benefit from Yayin Nesech.
A similar argument is recorded in Pesachim (76b). The Gemara there discusses a case of kosher meat that was roasted together with Neveilah in the same oven, but was distanced from the Neveilah and roasted on a separate rack. Rav rules that the meats pass their "Rei'ach," fragrances, to each other, thus forbidding the kosher meat. Levi argues that even if the kosher meat was lean and the Neveilah was fatty (with much more "Rei'ach"), the kosher meat is permitted since "Rei'ach Lav Milsa Hi," fragrance is inconsequential.
Is the argument in Pesachim the same argument as the one in the Gemara here, or are the two arguments based on different issues?
(a) RASHI in Pesachim (76b, DH Amar Lecha) says that the two arguments are the same. In deciding the Halachah in that Gemara, Rashi notes that the Gemara there quotes a Tana to support Rav's ruling. Nevertheless, Rashi quotes the Gemara here in Avodah Zarah, in which the Halachah certainly follows the view of Rava (since the Halachah always follows Rava when he argues with Abaye, except in six specific cases; see Bava Metzia 22b), and Rashi says that based on this, the Halachah must follow Levi in Pesachim, since Rava here in Avodah Zarah also maintains that smell is inconsequential. This is also the opinion of the RIF in Chulin (32a of the pages of the Rif).
(b) TOSFOS here (DH Rava) disagrees with Rashi's understanding that these cases are similar. He argues that the Gemara in Pesachim says that in an actual incident that occurred, Rava mi'Parzakya ruled that a fish which was cooked in the same oven as a piece of meat may not be eaten with milk. Mar bar Rav Ashi concurred with that ruling. In practice, the Halachah was decided in favor of Rav's opinion. Moreover, if the arguments are the same, then why does the Gemara there not quote the Gemara here as a cross reference?
Tosfos therefore asserts that the cases are different, and the arguments unrelated. The Halachah follows both Rav and Rava in their respective arguments. He explains that Abaye, who forbids smelling the wine of a Nochri, maintains that the act is akin to drinking directly from the prohibited wine. In the case in Pesachim, where the smell goes from meat to meat and the action of eating the kosher meat has no apparent relation to the Neveilah, even Abaye might agree that the kosher meat is permitted. Similarly, Rava here may agree with Rav in Pesachim. Rava admits that when a strong smell of roasting meat emanates from Neveilah, it is significant enough to prohibit the kosher meat. In the case of smelling a Nochri's wine, the smell is detrimental to the person who smells it. That sort of smell, Rava rules, is not considered benefit.
Although the Rif in Chulin (ibid.) rules like Rashi, he cites many additional arguments in favor of the opinion of Tosfos. The Gemara later in Avodah Zarah quotes an argument in a Beraisa in the case of one who places a steaming loaf of bread on top of a barrel of Terumah wine. Rebbi Meir says that the bread becomes like Terumah, while Rebbi Yehudah says that it does not. Rebbi Yosi says that if it was wheat bread, then it is not like Terumah, but if it was barley bread, then it is like Terumah, because barley absorbs smell. Reish Lakish there states that everyone agrees that if the bread was hot and the barrel was open, the bread would be Terumah. From the statement of Reish Lakish it seems obvious that if two roasting pieces of meat would also send odors to each other, then the Neveilah piece should prohibit the kosher piece.
However, the Rif refutes this proof and the proof of Tosfos as well. Levi was the teacher of Reish Lakish, and thus one may not reject the teacher's explanation because of a comment of his student. In addition, Reish Lakish's comment explains only Abaye's understanding of the argument. Furthermore, the proof of Tosfos from the incident with Rava mi'Parzakya is not a proof because even Levi would agree with the verdict of Rava mi'Parzakya, since Levi permits the kosher meat only once it already happened, b'Di'eved, in order to avoid the total loss of the meat. Rava mi'Parzakya's case involved telling someone not to eat his fish l'Chatchilah with a dip which contained milk. Levi certainly would agree with that ruling, as no loss would be incurred by the owner of the fish!
The RAMBAN, RASHBA, RITVA, and others differ with the Rif's understanding of the ruling of Rava mi'Parzakya. They understand that all those involved in these arguments (Rav, Levi, Rava, and Abaye) are not discussing cases that had already happened, but rather they are discussing what is permitted to do in practice. Nevertheless, these Rishonim rule like the Rif. They explain that Rava mi'Parzakya -- who prohibited eating the fish with a dip containing milk -- did so in the spirit of many stringencies which were established in order to separate eating kosher milk with kosher meat. The Rabanan were more stringent in this area (of meat and milk), because people are less cautious on their own to stay away from such mixtures (as milk by itself is permitted and meat by itself is permitted). The Rabanan were less strict about non-kosher food, since people tend to stay away from such foods on their own. His ruling, therefore, has no impact on the argument of Rav and Levi regarding the smell of Neveilah. (Y. MONTROSE)