BAVA METZIA 66-67 - Dedicated by Andy & Nancy Neff of Teaneck, N.J. in honor of those who learn the Dafyomi around the world.


OPINIONS: When a man discovers that the woman he married is an Aylonis, he may terminate the marriage on the grounds that the marriage was a Mekach Ta'us (a transaction conducted under false premises). The Gemara quotes a Beraisa which states that in such a case the woman loses all rights to her Kesubah, Peiros, Mezonos (support), and Bela'os. What are Peiros and Bela'os? (See also Background to the Daf.)

(a) RASHI (DH v'Lo Peiros) explains that the Chachamim decreed that a husband may eat the fruit of property that his wife inherits during the marriage. In return for this right, the Chachamim decreed that the husband is responsible to redeem his wife in the event that she is captured and held for ransom. Rashi explains that the Beraisa teaches that a woman who is found to be an Aylonis loses the right to have her husband redeem her from captivity, and, nevertheless, she still may not demand him to pay for the fruit that he ate from her inherited properties.

Rashi (DH v'Lo Bela'os) explains that Bela'os are clothing which a woman brings with her into the marriage as part of her dowry. Even when these garments still exist (in contrast to Peiros, fruit which was already eaten by the husband), she must leave them in the possession of her husband.

TOSFOS (DH u'Bela'os) has difficulty with this explanation. Tosfos asks that whenever the Gemara discusses clothing which the wife brought into the marriage and which still exists, it explicitly states "Bela'os Kayamin" -- "existing clothing." The fact that the Beraisa here does not say "Kayamin" indicates that it refers to clothing which no longer exists. Moreover, the Gemara in Kesuvos (101a) implies that an Aylonis would take with her the clothing which she brought into the marriage when that clothing still exists.

(b) TOSFOS therefore asserts that the Bela'os mentioned in the Beraisa are garments which she brought into the marriage and which were used up by her husband. Just as she may not ask her husband to pay her for the fruits that he ate from her inherited property, she may not ask him to pay the value of the clothes he used up that were part of her dowry.

Tosfos adds, however, that the Peiros which the Beraisa mentions must be Peiros that are in existence, because if they do not exist it is obvious that the husband does not have to pay for them. Even if the husband used the actual property that she inherited, he does not have to pay her for it when the marriage is deemed a Mekach Ta'us.

(c) Alternatively, Tosfos explains that when the Beraisa mentions Peiros, it refers to the husband's obligation to redeem his wife from captivity with his money, an obligation that comes as a result of the enactment of Peiros. Consequently, if the Aylonis was taken captive and redeemed herself from her own money, she may not demand that her husband compensate her for the money which she paid the captors. (Y. MONTROSE)



QUESTION: The Gemara discusses an arrangement called "Nachyaisa" -- "deduction." This refers to a case in which a borrower gives a field to the lender as collateral for the loan, and stipulates that each year a set amount of money be deducted from the debt in exchange for the lender's right to keep the fruit of the field. The Gemara says that such an arrangement does not constitute Ribis. RASHI (DH b'Asra d'Mesalkei) explains that since a set amount is deducted from the debt each year in exchange for the fruit regardless of the quality of crop that the field yields, the arrangement resembles a sale and not a loan with interest. Hence, this arrangement is permitted even if the lender ends up taking more fruit than the set amount which he deducts from the loan.

The Gemara adds that a "Tzurba me'Rabanan," a Torah scholar, should not enter into such an arrangement. The Gemara later relates that Ravina entered into such an arrangement (as the lender). Why did he do this? Was Ravina not a Talmid Chacham? Moreover, Ravina earlier in the Gemara had an argument with Rav Acha. One of them said that an arrangement of Kitzusa (where there is more room for leniency than Nachyaisa) is forbidden, and the other said that although Kitzusa is permitted, an arrangement of Nachyaisa may be done only by an ordinary person and not by a Talmid Chacham. Even if Ravina's opinion in this argument is the lenient one, he still says that a Talmid Chacham may not enter an arrangement of Nachyaisa!


(a) TOSFOS (DH Ravina) answers in the name of RABEINU TAM that Ravina simply did not think of himself as a Talmid Chacham. (Tosfos notes that Rabeinu Tam's text apparently read "Rafram" instead of "Ravina.")

The MAHARAM SHIF writes that this explanation is difficult to understand, but he does not explain the difficulty. The CHIDUSHIM U'VI'URIM explains the difficulty. Borrowing money in any other manner (other than through a Nachyaisa arrangement) does not show that a person is a Talmid Chacham! How can Tosfos say that Ravina entered into a Nachyaisa transaction because he did not consider himself a Talmid Chacham? No one would have assumed that he was a Talmid Chacham had he borrowed money in any other manner!

The ELIYAH RABAH (OC 554:26) questions the explanation of Tosfos from the Gemara in Ta'anis (10b). The Gemara there quotes Raban Shimon ben Gamliel who says that a person may consider himself a Talmid Chacham in order to be stringent or act in a more difficult way, such as undertaking a fast which is observed only by Talmidei Chachamim. Accordingly, why did Ravina not consider himself a Talmid Chacham and avoid lending with a Nachyaisa arrangement? Since Nachyaisa is a more profitable arrangement for the lender, Ravina would have had to sacrifice in order to enter an arrangement of Kitzusa instead of Nachyaisa, and thus there would have been no problem of an unworthy person acting like a Talmid Chacham, according to the Gemara in Ta'anis. Why does Tosfos say that Ravina did not want to consider himself a Talmid Chacham, if one is permitted to do so in order to be stringent upon himself?

1. The Eliyah Rabah answers that perhaps the Gemara in Ta'anis refers only to acting in a way which causes physical pain. To undergo physical pain, any person may consider himself a Talmid Chacham. In contrast, to consider oneself a Talmid Chacham in order to turn down a monetary gain gives the appearance of arrogance and is not permitted.

2. The Eliyah Rabah cites the RAMBAM in PERUSH HA'MISHNAYOS (Pesachim 4:5) who writes that the Halachah does not follow the view of Raban Shimon ben Gamliel, and one may never give himself the status of a Talmid Chacham. Perhaps Tosfos here follows the view of the Rambam.

(b) Tosfos quotes others who explain that when the Gemara says that "Ravina ate through Nachyaisa," it actually refers to an arrangement of Kitzusa, which the Gemara says is permitted even for a Talmid Chacham. (Y. MONTROSE)