MEGILAH 19 (3 Av) - dedicated l'Iluy Nishmas Reb Aharon Dovid ben Elimelech Shmuel Kornfeld (Muncasz/Israel/New York), who passed away on 3 Av 5761, by his daughter, Diane Koenigsberg, and family. May his love for Torah and for Eretz Yisrael be preserved in all of his descendants.

[19a - 57 lines; 19b - 47 lines]

1)[line 1]דיפתרא דמליח וקמיח ולא עפיץDIFTERA D'MALI'ACH V'KAMI'ACH V'LO AFITZ- a hide that is treated with salt and flour, but not with gall nuts (Afatzim), and that is not split in two

2)[line 2]מחקאMECHAKA- papyrus

3)[line 6]"ויאמר להם ברוך מפיו יקרא אלי את כל הדברים האלה ואני כתב על הספר בדיו""VA'YOMER LAHEM BARUCH, 'MI'PIV YIKAREI ELAI ES KOL HA'DEVARIM, VA'ANI KOSEV ES KOL HA'DEVARIM BI'DEYO." - "And Baruch said to them, 'From his (Yirmeyahu's) mouth he read out to me all the words, and I wrote everything in ink." (Yirmeyahu 36:18) (MEGILAS EICHAH)

(a)In the fourth year of the reign of Yehoyakim ben Yoshiyahu (one of the worst kings ever to sit on the throne of Yehudah), HaSh-m commanded Yirmeyahu, who was in jail at the time, to transcribe Megilas Eichah. HaSh-m taught it to him in the vain hope that it would reach the ears of Yisrael who would take to heart its contents and do Teshuvah.

(b)Yirmeyahu immediately called for his disciple, Baruch, and dictated to him the Megilah, while the latter transcribed it onto a scroll. Yirmeyahu then instructed Baruch to take the scroll to Yerushalayim and read it in front of the people who had assembled there to fast and pray because of their troubles. Many of the officers were duly impressed by Megilas Eichah, and asked him to read it to them again. They decided to have the scroll read before the king, but first they wanted to know whether the entire contents were dictated by Yirmeyahu or whether only the main sections had been dictated by him and the details supplied by Baruch. This verse contains Baruch's reply.

(c)After advising Baruch to arrange for Yirmeyahu and himself to hide, to escape the wrath of Yehoyakim when he would hear the Megilah, the officers organized for the Megilah to be taken to the king and read before him.

(d)It was in Kislev of the fifth year of Yehoyakim's reign when Megilas Eichah was brought before the king, as he sat in his winter-room in front of the coal fire.

(e)The verses later (36:23-24) describe Yehoyakim's reaction when the Megilah was read before him. He threw the Megilah into the fire against the advice of the servants (who were impressed by its contents and who had advised Baruch and assisted him with regard to getting it to the king without endangering his life).

(f)Unmoved by the ominous prophecy, the king sent servants to seize Baruch and Yirmeyahu in order to have them killed. HaSh-m, however, hid them.

(g)HaSh-m then sent Yirmeyahu to Yehoyakim to inform him that he would pay dearly for burning the Megilah. None of his children would sit firmly on the throne (his son Yechonyah would rule for three months before being exiled), and his own corpse would not merit burial. It would lie out in the open "by the heat of day and in the cold of night."

(h)As for the Megilah, its contents were destined to be fulfilled to the letter, because the people failed to pay attention to the numerous warnings that they received. At Yirmeyahu's bidding, Baruch re-wrote Megilas Eichah, with an additional chapter containing three verses for each letter of the alphabet, corresponding to the three chapters which each comprised one verse per letter.

4)[line 20]דפרוז בן יומוPARUZ BEN YOMO- one living in an open place for the day of Purim

5)[line 36]תוקףTOKEF- power

6)[line 54]חוטי גידיןCHUTEI GIDIN- sinews used as thread

7)[line 55]מחסרא ומייתרא פורתאMECHASRA U'MEYASRA PURTA- a little shorter or longer [than the other parchments]. (The Gemara is discussing a scroll that contains several books of Kesuvim attached together.)


8)[line 6]שיור התפרSHIYUR HA'TEFER- the part of the Sefer Torah that is not sewn together; i.e. one must leave a remainder (of any amount) of the parchment on the top and bottom that is not sewn

9)[line 10]כמלא נקב מחט סדקיתKI'MLO NEKEV MACHAT SIDKIS- like the size of the eye of a thin sewing needle (that is used for sewing tears in clothes or strips of cloths)