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YEVAMOS 44

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YEVAMOS 44 (24 Cheshvan) - dedicated by Dr. Moshe and Rivkie Snow in memory of Rivkie's father, the Manostrishtcher Rebbi, Hagaon Rav Yitzchak Yoel ben Harav Gedaliah Aharon Rabinowitz Ztz"l, Rav of Kehilas Nachalas Yehoshua in Canarsie, NY. A personification of the Torah scholar of old, the Ukranian-born Rebbi lived most of his life in the United States where his warm ways changed many lives.

SUMMARY

If the ages of the Yavam and the Yevamah were very disparate, the elders advise them to do Chalitzah and not Yibum in order to avoid potential marital strife.
 
If four brothers die without children, the oldest surviving brother may do Yibum with all four Yevamos if he is capable of supporting them all. (1)
 
If a man is married to two wives and he dies without children, the brother does Yibum or Chalitzah with one of them and the other wife is free remarry.
 
One of the Yevamos is eligible to marry a Kohen and her Tzarah is forbidden to marry a Kohen. If the Yavam chooses to do Chalitzah, he should do Chalitzah with the one who is already disqualified from marrying a Kohen. (2)
 
Rebbi Akiva: If a man remarries his wife after he divorced her and she married another man, or if he marries his Chalutzah or the relative of his Chalutzah, the child born from that union is a Mamzer. Chachamim: The child is not a Mamzer. (3)
 
Although Rebbi Yehoshua rules that a child is a Mamzer only if he is born from a union that is a Chiyuv Misas Beis Din, he agrees that a daughter born from a union that is a Chiyuv Kares is disqualified from marrying a Kohen. (4)
 
A widow who marries a Kohen Gadol is disqualified from marrying a Kohen after the death of the Kohen Gadol.
 
Although Rebbi Shimon ha'Timni rules that a child is a Mamzer only if he is born from a union that is a Chiyuv Kares, he agrees that a child born from a Nochri who married a Jewess is a Mamzer.

A BIT MORE

1. If more than four brothers die, he should not do Yibum with more than four Yevamos, even if he could afford it, because each Yevamah should have an Onah at least once a month. The Onah of a Talmid Chacham is once a week, on Friday night. Thus, if he has four wives, each wife will have an Onah once a month.
 
2. A Chalutzah is forbidden to a Kohen. Therefore, it is preferable not to do the Chalitzah with the Yevamah who is permitted to marry a Kohen, so that she will remain permitted. Rebbi learns from this that a person should not spill out his well-water if there are others in need of the water.
 
3. The Chachamim rule that a child is a Mamzer only if he is born from a union that is a Chiyuv Kares. Both the Chachamim and Rebbi Akiva agree that if a man marries the relative of his divorced wife, the child born from that union is a Mamzer because the union is a Chiyuv Kares.
 
4. This is learned through a Kal va'Chomer from a widow who married a Kohen Gadol. Since the prohibition of a widow to a Kohen Gadol applies only to a Kohen Gadol and yet the child is disqualified from marrying a Kohen, certainly a daughter born from a union that is a Chiyuv Kares is disqualified to marry a Kohen, since it is a prohibition that applies to everyone.

BRIEF INSIGHT

DOING YIBUM WITH MORE THAN FOUR YEVAMOS
 
The Gemara says that if more than four brothers die without children, the surviving brother should not do Yibum with more than four of them, so that each of the Yevamos will have an Onah at least once a month. Rashi explains that the Onah of a Talmid Chacham is once a week, on Friday night, and therefore when a man is married to four Yevamos, each one has an Onah once a month. The Nimukei Yosef asks that the Onah is a separate obligation for each wife, and thus the Onah is once a week for each wife regardless of how many wives he has. The Nimukei Yosef answers that the normal obligation of Onah does not apply to a Yevamah, because she is an "acquisition from Shamayim." The Gemara is giving advice not to have an Onah with each Yevamah less than once a month, and therefore one should not do Yibum with more than four Yevamos.

QUICK HALACHAH

THE YEVAMAH GOES TO THE YAVAM
 
The Yevamah must travel to the place of residence of the Yavam (to do Chalitzah or Yibum). The Beis Din advises them regarding whether they should choose to do Chalitzah or Yibum. (Shulchan Aruch EH 166:1)
 
The Yevamah must travel to the place of residence of the Yavam for the Chalitzah or Yibum, even if she that means that she must leave Eretz Yisrael and go to Chutz la'Aretz. (Pischei Teshuvah in the name of the Radvaz)

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