Allan asks:

Please help me clarify:

First the gemara thought that the t"k allowed the shliach to sell half a kor of land, and that's why the ba'al habayis is moel in the case of the chaluk. The gemara says no, really they hold that a shliach can't sell half the land and the case of the chaluk is where he gets it for cheaper. But now we have a question on R' Yehuda [b/c we thought that HE was the one who said that a shliach can't do half the job] - how are we going to understand why the ba'al habayis is not moel, and the gemara gives an answer. Then the gemara says hachi nami mistabra, that otherwise why does r' yehuda agree in the case of kitnis. In other words, had he held like we thought originally [that a shliach can't do half a job] then he would have exempted the ba'al habayis by kitnis as well.

2 questions on this gemara:

(a)Who is R' Yehuda "modeh" to [modeh r' yehuda bekitnis]? We just established that acc. to the t"k he holds that a shliach can't do half a job, therefore the ba'al habayis should NOT be moel acc. to the t"k in the case of kitnis, so why the lashon "modeh".

(b) Lechorah we see that acc. to R' Yehuda he holds that a shliach could do half a job [again based on the hachi nami mistabra, b/c if like we thought originally he shouldn't be moel by kitnis either since it's only half a job]. But now it comes out a bit interesting misvara: if the shliach does half of what he is asked he IS moel acc. to R' Yehuda [i.e. kitnis], but if he does EVERYTHING he is asked for half the price he is not moel since the meshaleach has a ta'ana on him that he should have bought for the whole dinar an even cheaper deal etc. It seems interesting that the meshaleach can only have a ta'ana on the shliach in the second case but not in the first.

Please clarify, tizku lemitzvos!

Allan, Melbourne, Australia

The Kollel replies:

(a) The point here is not whether the Shali'ach can do half a job or not, because here the half job that the Shali'ach did was just as good as doing the full job, according to the Tana Kama. That is, he bought a Chaluk worth 6 for the price of 3. Therefore, even if, normally, the Shali'ach cannot do half a job, in this case the Tana Kama maintains that the Shali'ach fulfilled his Shelichus because the Ba'al ha'Bayis benefited.

Rebbi Yehudah disagrees with this, because he maintains that the Ba'al ha'Bayis can say, "If you would have paid 6 like I told you to do, then you would have received a Chaluk worth 12! So you made me lose a profit of 6 and instead only accrued for me a profit of 3." Accordingly, when the Gemara says that Rebbi Yehudah is "Modeh," it means that Rebbi Yehudah agrees with the Tana Kama, because the sellers do not sell Kitnis any cheaper just because one buys in bulk. If he bought Kitnis worth 6 for the price of 3, Rebbi Yehudah agrees that he fulfilled his Shelichus because he would not have received a better deal had he paid 6. Hence, he transgressed Me'ilah according to both the Tana Kama and Rebbi Yehudah.

(b) It is an interesting Sevara to distinguish between the two cases as you write, but the crucial difference is between Kitnis and other commodities. When he bought 6 Kitnis for the price of 3, Rebbi Yehudah agrees he did a good job, because in that place each "Kanah" of Kitnis is sold for a Perutah and they do not give the buyer more Kitnis for buying in bulk. Since he would get only 3 Kitnis if he would pay 3, if he obtained 6 then this is pure profit, and even Rebbi Yehudah will agree that his Shelichus was valid and he has transgressed Me'ilah. This is because if he would have paid 6, he would have also received only 6. In contrast, for other items, if one would pay 6, he would receive 12, and thus Rebbi Yehudah says that the Shali'ach prevented the Ba'al ha'Bayis from earning 6 and gained only 3 for him when he bought 6 for the price of 3.

Kol Tuv,

Dovid Bloom