[116a - 33 lines; 116b - 12 lines]

1)[line 4]V'NITZCHUM- and he (Rebbi Yochanan ben Zakai) prevailed over them (the Tzedukim, for his proof against them was conclusive)

2)[line 4]"[ .] ""[VA'YOMRU ZIKNEI HA'EIDAH, 'MAH NA'ASEH LA'NOSARIM L'NASHIM? KI NISHMEDAH MI'BINYAMIN ISHAH.'] VA'YOMRU, 'YERUSHAS PELEITAH L'VINYAMIN, V'LO YIMACHEH SHEVET MI'YISRAEL'" - "[And the elders of the congregation said, 'What shall we do to provide wives for the survivors? For the women of Binyamin have been destroyed.'] And they said, 'The inheritance of the remnant of Binyamin, and let a tribe of Yisrael not be wiped out'" (Shoftim 21:16-17) (SAVING THE TRIBE OF BINYAMIN FROM EXTINCTION)

(a)Following the shocking episode of Pilegesh b'Giv'ah (see following entry, and Ta'anis 30b) and the terrible civil war of revenge that ensued, the entire tribe of Binyamin was wiped out with the exception of 600 men. Threatened with the extinction of a complete tribe in Yisrael, and having sworn not to give their own daughters in marriage to the Bnei Binyamin (pronouncing a curse upon anyone who did), the people - who were now reconciled with Binyamin - gathered in Beit El to discuss the fate of Binyamin, and they prayed to HaSh-m for Divine assistance.

(b)They realized that they could solve two problems simultaneously. During the recent civil war, despite the decision to mobilize an army of representatives from every city in Yisrael, no contingent came from the city of Yavesh Gil'ad to participate. The people now arrived at the following decision: They would penalize Yavesh Gil'ad by killing every man, married woman, and child in the city, while they would exempt all of the virgins (numbering 400) from the punishment, whom they would then give to the Bnei Binyamin as wives. This was not a violation of the oath, because it was not their own daughters that they were giving them (but those of the deceased men of Yavesh Gil'ad).

(c)The above plan accounted for 400 out of the 600 survivors from Binyamin, but how could they circumvent the oath with regard to the other 200? This is the problem that these two verses discuss.

(d)They ultimately came up with the following plan: It was customary for the unmarried girls of Shiloh to gather once a year to dance and sing in the local vineyards on the occasion of some annual celebration. The people authorized the 200 remaining men of Binyamin to hide in the vineyards when this day came, and - when the girls would arrive - each man would take one of them home as a wife (on the assumption that the girls' fathers would subsequently agree to this arrangement). They assured the men of Binyamin that if the girls' fathers would subsequently threaten to do battle with the leaders who had made the suggestion, they would plead with them on their behalf, begging them to understand the helplessness of their situation and explaining to them that they had not contravened the oath, as it was not they who had given their daughters to the men of Binyamin, but the men of Binyamin who had taken their daughters.

3)[line 5]" ""V'LO YIMACHEH SHEVET MI'YISRAEL" - "So that a tribe not be wiped out from Yisrael" (Shoftim 21:17) (PILEGESH B'GIVAH)

(a)A civil war ensued after the tribe of Binyamin sympathized with certain men from the city of Giv'ah who performed abhorrent acts with the concubine of a Levi (see Background to Gitin 6:24). The Levi dissected her dead body and sent the limbs to all of the tribes of Bnei Yisrael to protest the iniquity. The apathy of the men of the tribe of Binyamin and their unwillingness to root out the evil in their midst caused Bnei Yisrael to gather together and swear that no one would give his daughter to the men of Binyamin as a wife. They then waged war against the tribe of Binyamin, with confidence that they would achieve victory and avenge the iniquity.

(b)HaSh-m, however, caused Bnei Yisrael to incur huge losses in the first two battles of the war because of various sins of lack of faith, first and foremost their unwillingness to avenge the honor of HaSh-m regarding Pesel Michah (the idol constructed by Michah - see Shoftim 17-18). After they repented, He let them vanquish Binyamin to the extent that only 600 men remained from the entire tribe of Binyamin. The other tribes regretted the loss and sought to find wives for these men, to rebuild their tribe.

(c)One plan used is mentioned in RASHI DH me'Anshei. (See previous entry.) Bnei Yisrael deemed the city of Yavesh Gil'ad guilty of treason, for they had not joined in the oath or the battle against Binyamin. All of the men and older women of the city were put to death. 400 girls were kept alive and were given to 400 men from Binyamin.

(d)For the remaining 200 men, two more methods were employed. Inspecting the words of the oath, it was decided that the oath only restricted the men of Bnei Yisrael from giving wives to the men of Binyamin ("Mimenu"). However, the children of those who took the oath were able to marry off their daughters to the men of the tribe of Binyamin. Next, the oath precluded only giving wives to the men of Binyamin, but not the taking of those wives themselves, an act that Bnei Yisrael allowed those men to perform (see RASHI to Bereishis 49:27). The events of this tragic time in Jewish history are recorded in Shoftim 19-21 and discussed in Gitin 6b and Yevamos 60b.

4)[line 10] MALEI ALAV EVRAH- becomes full of anger at him

5)[line 11]" ; [ ]""YOM EVRAH HA'YOM HA'HU; [YOM TZARAH U'METZUKAH, YOM SHO'AH U'MESHO'AH, YOM CHOSHECH VA'AFELAH, YOM ANAN VA'ARAFEL]"- "That day [shall be] a day of wrath, [a day of trouble and torment, a day of ruin and desolation, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of cloud and dark cloud]" (Tzefanyah 1:15).

6)[line 12]"[ - ], ""[YISHMA KEL V'YA'ANEM V'YOSHEV KEDEM SELAH,] ASHER EIN CHALIFOS LAMO V'LO YAR'U EL-KIM"- "[May HaSh-m hear and humble them - He Who sits from all time, forever - those who] have no changing (replacement) to them and who do not fear HaSh-m" (Tehilim 55:20).

7)[line 15] DEIN GARMEI D'ASIRA'AH BIR- (a) this is the bone of my tenth deceased son (RASHI to Berachos 5b); (b) this is the tooth of my tenth deceased son (RASHBAM here, RABEINU CHANANEL to Berachos 5b); (c) this is a bone from the tenth meal that was given to comfort me the tenth time I was a mourner (ARUCH) (In this manner, Rebbi Yochanan comforted mourners.)

8)[line 17] BEI TAMYA- a house of mourners (see Mesoras ha'Shas to Berachos 6b)

9)[line 18] BEI MAN D'SHACHIV B'LO BENEI- a house of a person who died with no children

10)[line 18]"[ ;] , [ ]""[AL TIVKU L'MES V'AL TANUDU LO;] BECHU VACHO LA'HOLECH, [KI LO YASHUV OD V'RA'AH ES ERETZ MOLADTO]"- "[Do not weep for the dead and do not shake your head for him;] rather, weep for the one that goes away, [because he will never return and see the land of his birthplace]" (Yirmeyahu 22:10).

11a)[line 21] HA DIDEI- this statement (that the verse is referring to a person who left no students) is his own [opinion]

b)[line 21] HA D'RABEI- this [other] statement (that the verse is referring to a person who left no children) is [the opinion] of his teacher

12)[line 21] SIMAN HADAD ANI V'CHACHAM- this is a mnemonic device for remembering the three statements of Rebbi Pinchas ben Chama that follow:

1.Hadad refers to "v'Hadad Shama b'Mitzrayim..." (line 22)

2.Ani refers to "Kasheh Aniyus b'Soch Beiso Shel Adam..." (line 27)

3.v'Chacham refers to "Kol she'Yesh Lo Choleh v'Soch Beiso, Yelech Etzel Chacham v'Yvakesh Alav Rachamim..." (line 29)

13)[line 22]" , [ ]""VA'HADAD SHAMA B'MITZRAYIM KI SHACHAV DAVID IM AVOSAV V'CHI MEIS YO'AV SAR HA'TZAVA, [VA'YOMER HADAD EL PAR'OH, 'SHALCHEINI V'EILECH EL ARTZI']" - "And when Hadad heard in Egypt that David had 'lain with his fathers' and that Yo'av the commander-in-chief of the army had died, [he said to Pharaoh, 'Send me and I will go back to my land']" (Melachim I 11:21) (HADAD FROM EDOM)

(a)Still in the time of David, when Yo'av spent six months in Edom killing all the males, a prince named Hadad (whom the verse sometimes refers to as Adad) managed to flee together with some of his father's men, although he was only a youngster at the time. Fleeing via Paran, he convinced many locals to join his ranks to create the impression that he was the captain of many troops, and he arrived in Egypt with a large following. Pharaoh, duly impressed with Adad's show, gave him a house, offered him food and an area of land in which to reside. To such an extent did Adad find favor in Pharaoh's eyes that he even gave him the sister of Queen Tachpenes in marriage. When she bore him a son ("Genuvas"), it was Tachpenes who weaned him in the royal palace.

(b)When Adad heard that David and Yo'av were no longer alive, he asked Pharaoh for permission to return to Edom. Pharaoh did not understand why he wanted to leave, since he had everything that he needed, but Adad insisted and returned to Edom.

(c)Some explain that the verse changes from the expression "had lain with his fathers" (when referring to the death of David) to "died" (when referring to the death of Yo'av) because David died on his death-bed, whereas Yo'av was killed. According to our Gemara, it is because David left a worthy successor to take his place, whereas Yo'av did not.

(d)The verse then writes about Razon, a fugitive who escaped earlier when David attacked and defeated the army of Hadadezer, king of Syria. Together with Adad, they became a constant thorn in the side of Shlomo during the latter period of his reign. This was the punishment given by HasSh-m to Shlomo for marrying many wicked wives, to make him realize his sin and do Teshuvah. When he failed to do so, he lost the right to govern all of Yisrael, and ten of the twelve tribes were taken away from his son Rechav'am and given to Yerav'am ben Nevat.

14a)[line 23]SHECHIVAH- laying down to rest

b)[line 23]MISAH- death

15)[line 27] KASHEH ANIYUS- poverty is difficult

16)[line 27]" , - ""CHANUNI, CHANUNI, ATEM RE'AI, KI YAD ELO-KA NAG'AH BI"- "Pity me, pity me, you my friends, for the hand of HaSh-m has afflicted me" (Iyov 19:21) - The Gemara interprets the "hand" of HaSh-m to be an allusion to fifty different types of afflictions. Since the Torah says that HaSh-m brought upon Mitzrayim ten afflictions with His "finger" (Shemos 8:15), and since there are five fingers on a hand, the "hand" of HaSh-m refers to fifty afflictions (RASHBAM).

17)[line 28]" , ""HISHAMER! AL TEFEN EL AVEN, KI AL ZEH BACHARTA ME'ONI"- "Be careful! Do not turn to the sinful, for this is what you have chosen over poverty" (Iyov 36:21).

18)[line 30]" , ""CHAMAS MELECH MAL'ACHEI MAVES, V'ISH CHACHAM YECHAPERENAH"- "The wrath of the king is like angels of death, but a wise man will pacify it" (Mishlei 16:14).


19)[line 1] AGAV CHURFEI LO IYEN BAH- because of his acuteness of mind, he was not careful to look into the Sugya (the Rashbam explains that Rami bar Chama was concentrating on a different question at that time, as recorded later in the Gemara)

20)[line 9] BENOS TZELOFCHAD- the daughters of Tzelofchad, the son of Chefer, of the tribe of Menasheh. According to declaration of his daughters recorded in the verse (Bamidbar 27:3), he died in the desert because of his own sin. The Tana'im (Shabbos 96b-97a) argue as to which sin he committed. Rebbi Akiva states that he was the Mekoshesh Etzim, the person who gathered kindling sticks on Shabbos (Bamidbar 15:32-36), who was put to death by stoning. According to Rebbi Yehudah ben Beseira, Tzelofchad was among the people of Bnei Yisrael who resolved to wage the war of conquest of Eretz Yisrael on their own, after Moshe informed them that they were destined to wander in the desert for forty years and die there due to the sin of the spies. Moshe told them that HaSh-m would not be with them in their military assault, and as a result they were massacred by the Amalekim and the Kena'anim (Bamidbar 14:40-45). Our Mishnah discusses the inheritance that his daughters received since he had no sons.