1) A NAZIR WHOSE HAIR WAS CUT BEFORE HIS NEZIRUS CONCLUDED
QUESTIONS: The Gemara discusses the Halachah in a case in which someone shaves the head of a Nazir but leaves hair that is the length of "Kedei la'Chof Rosho l'Ikro" (long enough to bend the tip of each hair down to its base). The Gemara says that if the Nazir's hair is shaved in such a way before the conclusion of the days of his Nezirus (that is, before the day of "Melos"), he must recount the days of his Nezirus. (The haircut is "Soser" his Nezirus.) This requirement applies only if hair "grows from the bottom" (which is the way hair grows according to the Gemara's conclusion). If hair "grows from the top," the Nazir would not be required to count another thirty days of Nezirus.
The Gemara (39b) says that according to Rebbi Eliezer, if the Nazir's hair is cut in a manner (which leaves "Kedei la'Chof Rosho l'Ikro") after the "Yom Melos" (the conclusion of the days of his Nezirus), the Nazir must wait seven days before he shaves again and brings his Korbanos. According to the Rabanan, he must wait thirty days before he shaves again and brings his Korbanos. (TOSFOS (DH v'Kim) says that if the Nazir's hair is cut in such a manner two days after "Yom Melos," even the Rabanan agree that the Nazir waits only seven days before he shaves again and brings his Korbanos.)
The source for the Halachah that a Nazir whose hair was cut after "Yom Melos" must wait seven or thirty days is a comparison between the case of a Nazir whose hair was cut after "Yom Melos" and the case of a Nazir who became Tamei after "Yom Melos." According to Rebbi Eliezer (16a), a Nazir who became Tamei after "Yom Melos" brings his Korbanos as soon as he becomes Tahor (seven days later). Hence, the same applies to a Nazir whose hair was cut after "Yom Melos"; he shaves again and brings his Korbanos seven days later. The Rabanan maintain that a Nazir who became Tamei after "Yom Melos" must count another thirty days before he brings his Korbanos, and thus a Nazir whose hair was cut after "Yom Melos" must wait thirty days before he brings his Korbanos. (When the Gemara expresses this comparison, it refers to the time he waits after he becomes Tamei as "Tiglachas Tum'ah" even though, technically, this period bears no resemblance to what is normally referred to as "Tiglachas Tum'ah." "Tiglachas Tum'ah" normally means that when he becomes Tamei before he finishes his Nezirus (and is "Soser" his count), he must shave his hair and bring Korbenos Tum'ah before he starts his count anew. Here, however, the Nazir who becomes Tamei after "Yom Melos" does not need to shave his hair and bring Korbenos Tum'ah, because the Tum'ah after "Yom Melos" is not "Soser" his count. Rather, the "Tiglachas Tum'ah" the Gemara mentions is the Tiglachas that the Nazir performs when he shaves and brings his Korbanos Taharah in a case in which he became Tamei after "Yom Melos.")
The Gemara leaves a number of points unclear.
(a) What difference does it make which part of hair was cut from the Nazir's head? Whether the hair that was cut was the hair he had at the time of his acceptance (Kabalah) of Nezirus, or whether it was hair that grew later, what remains is hair that grew on the head of a Nazir!
If there is some unique feature about the hair on a Nazir's head at the time of his Kabalah of Nezirus which requires that he cut that hair at the time he brings his Korbenos Nezirus, why does it help to grow hair for another thirty days (in a case in which the original hair was cut before his Nezirus concluded)? That hair was not there at the time of his Kabalah!
Moreover, if the Nazir must perform Tiglachas with the hair he had at the time of his Kabalah, how is he supposed to perform Tiglachas when he accepted Nezirus immediately after a haircut (when he has no hair at the time of his Kabalah)?
If the Gemara means that a Nazir must cut either hair that was on his head at the time of his Kabalah (as long as it was "Kedei la'Chof Rosho l'Ikro") or thirty-day-old hair of Nezirus, then when a person accepts Nezirus for 100 days and a bandit cuts off the length of hair that was on his head at the time of his Kabalah, why must he grow his hair for thirty days? He already has on his head a growth of hair of Nezirus which is more than thirty days old! What will another thirty days add? Similarly, in the Gemara's case, when a bandit cuts off the Nazir's hair and leaves "Kedei la'Chof Rosho l'Ikro," why must the Nazir count another thirty days of Nezirus? It should suffice to count another 23 days, since he already has a seven-day growth of hair (the amount which is "Kedei la'Chof Rosho l'Ikro") left on his head.
It seems unlikely that the Gemara means that different Nezirim are "Soser" their Nezirus by cutting different amounts of hair, and that the amount which must be cut to be "Soser" the Nezirus is the amount which was on his head at the time he accepted the Nezirus. If this would be true, there would be no consistency in the Halachah of a Nazir who cuts his hair "Nasata Devarecha l'Shi'urim").
(b) Presumably, the reason why the shaving of a Nazir's hair is "Soser" thirty days of Nezirus is that he now must grow new hair to shave off at the end of his Nezirus. To perform the Tiglachas, he must have "Gidul Pera," an overgrowth of hair, of Nezirus, and "Pera" is defined as hair-growth of thirty days. However, the Gemara here clearly states that when the hair of a Nazir is cut after "Yom Melos," Rebbi Eliezer maintains that although the Nazir still needs to be Megale'ach and bring his Korbanos, he does not need to wait thirty days before he shaves. The Gemara clearly implies that the Tiglachas does not require a thirty-day growth of hair, but merely a seven-day growth of hair. Why, then, does Rebbi Eliezer agree that when his hair is cut before "Yom Melos" the Nazir must wait thirty days until a thirty-day growth of hair is on his head (mid'Oraisa, as implied by Rav and Shmuel on 14b)? What is the reason for why he must wait thirty days if not for the Tiglachas?
The same question may be asked according to the Rabanan who argue with Rebbi Eliezer. Although the Rabanan require the Nazir to wait thirty days if his hair is shaved after "Yom Melos," that requirement cannot be mid'Oraisa, since it is derived from the case of a Nazir who becomes Tamei after "Yom Melos," in which case the requirement to wait thirty days is only mid'Rabanan (as Tosfos explains on 6a, DH Nitma, and 16a, DH Hareini). Mid'Oraisa, after seven days the Nazir may bring his Korbenos Taharah. According to the Rabanan, what is the reason for why a Nazir whose hair is shaved before "Yom Melos" must grow his hair for another thirty days?
(c) Even according to Rebbi Eliezer, why must a Nazir -- whose hair is shaved after "Yom Melos" -- grow his hair for seven days mid'Oraisa? How can the Gemara compare the seven days a Nazir is "Soser" when his hair is shaved after "Yom Melos" with the seven days a Nazir is "Soser" when he becomes Tamei after "Yom Melos"? As the ROSH here and TOSFOS in many places point out, the seven days he must wait after he becomes Tamei are not days of Nezirus being recounted to make up for lost days. He has not been "Soser" anything; rather, he merely must wait seven days in order to offer his Korbanos when he is Tahor; until then, he is Tamei and cannot offer Korbanos. How can the Gemara learn from that case that when a Nazir's hair is shaved after "Yom Melos" he must wait seven days for his hair to grow back? The comparison to Nazir Tamei should not require him to wait at all; rather, since he is Tahor and fit to bring his Korban right away, he should bring his Korban without delay.
ANSWERS:
(a) The Torah requires that the Tiglachas of a Nazir be done to "hair of Nezirus" (see answer (b) below). Normally, only hair which grows during the thirty days of his Nezirus can be called "hair of Nezirus," since hair-growth of thirty days is considered "Gidul Pera," an unruly growth (see Insights to 5a). A Nazir must wait thirty days after his hair is shaved so that thirty days' worth of hair ("hair of Nezirus") will grow back. However, if a person makes his hair into "hair of Nezirus" through another means, such as by accepting an oath of Nezirus, even a lesser amount of hair qualifies as "hair of Nezirus" (as long as it is "Kedei la'Chof Rosho l'Ikro"). That is why the hair on his head at the time of his Kabalah does not have to be a thirty-day length in order for him to perform the Tiglachas with it. (See ARZEI HA'LEVANON who cites the BRIS YAKOV in the name of KESAV YAD RASHI who writes that the primary Kedushah of a Nazir's hair is only on the hair he has at the time of Kabalah, and not on the hair that grows afterwards.)
If the Nazir must cut either a thirty-day length of hair or the hair that was on his head at the time of his Kabalah, when he accepts a 100-day Nezirus and shaves the length of the hair that was there from the time of his Kabalah but leaves the remaining length of hair, why should the haircut be "Soser" his Nezirus? He still has a 100-day growth of hair on his head at the end of his Nezirus! The answer seems to be that such a Nazir indeed does not need to wait thirty days. A Nazir only needs to wait until he has a thirty-day length of hair on his head after the haircut. This is consistent with what the Gemara says about a Nazir whose hair was cut after "Yom Melos": if his hair was shaved entirely, he must grow his hair for seven days according to Rebbi Eliezer. If, however, a seven-day growth of hair remains ("Kedei la'Chof Rosho l'Ikro"), he may do the Tiglachas immediately.
All of the Mishnayos which state that shaving is "Soser" thirty days refer to a Nazir whose hair was completely shaved off. If some hair was left on his head, he merely needs to grow the amount that will complete the thirty-day growth. Therefore, in the case of the Gemara in which the bandit left a seven-day hair growth on the Nazir's head, the Nazir only needs to wait 23 days. There is no difference between one Nazir and the other; the Shi'ur for all is the same -- a Nazir may cut his hair only when he has a thirty-day length of hair growth at the time he finishes his Nezirus.
(b) Tosfos implies that the law does not require that a Nazir actually cut his thirty-day growth of hair at the time he brings his Korbanos. Rather, he merely needs to be fit to cut a thirty-day length of hair at the time he finishes his Nezirus. If his hair is cut after "Yom Melos," he still may bring his Korbanos since the hair was fit to be cut. (When Tosfos writes, "Keivan she'Hayah Lefaneinu Gidul Se'ar... ha'Ra'uy l'Tiglachas," he alludes to the principle of "Kol ha'Ra'uy l'Bilah, Ein Bilah Me'akeves Bo.") In fact, if his hair was cut after "Yom Melos," it would not even help to grow hair afterwards since the Torah says that he must cut "Se'ar Rosh Nizro" (Bamidbar 6:18); hair grown after "Yom Melos" cannot be called "Se'ar Nizro" ("the hair of his Nezirus") since it was not grown during his Nezirus. Since it is impossible for him to cut "Se'ar Nizro" at this point, he is no different from a bald Nazir who has no option but to observe his Nezirus without Gilu'ach Se'ar (see 46b). Apparently, Tosfos understands that even the requirement to wait seven days according to Rebbi Eliezer is only mid'Rabanan, since the hair which grows then is not "Se'ar Rosh Nizro" and is not the hair which the Torah requires to be cut.
(c) The previous approach (b) answers the third question as well. Rebbi Eliezer indeed cannot compare the Nazir's requirement to wait seven days after his hair was shaved to the Nazir Tamei's requirement to wait seven days to become Tahor; the requirement to wait seven days to shave is only a Takanah d'Rabanan.
This is the way Tosfos, the Rosh, and others understand the Sugya. However, the RAMBAM implies an original approach to this Sugya which answers the third question in a straightforward manner.
The RAMBAM has an entirely different approach to the dispute between Rebbi Eliezer and the Rabanan earlier (16a). The Rambam (Hilchos Nezirus 6:4; see also Chart #1, footnote 6, and Insights to Nazir 16:1:b) writes that a Nazir who becomes Tamei after "Yom Melos" is required to bring his Korbenos Nazir Tamei and shave like an ordinary Nazir Tamei, in contrast to the opinion of the other Rishonim. Accordingly, the Rabanan require that he wait thirty days because he must have a thirty-day growth of hair in order to shave for his Nezirus Taharah! The requirement to wait thirty days is mid'Oraisa, just as any Nazir whose hair was shaved must wait thirty days. In contrast, Rebbi Eliezer maintains that after "Yom Melos," since the Nazir's hair was fit to be cut at the time he concluded the days of his Nezirus, he is required to grow only a seven-day growth of hair for the Tiglachas. Rebbi Eliezer derives this from the Halachah of a Nazir Tamei who, despite the fact that he stops counting his days of Nezirus immediately when he becomes Tamei, he does not shave until after seven days have passed, when he brings his Korbanos. Likewise, a Nazir after "Yom Melos" who is no longer counting his Nezirus must wait only seven days, as the Gemara here says. When the Mishnah says that according to Rebbi Eliezer, Tum'ah after "Yom Melos" "is "Soser" seven days," it means literally that it delays his Tiglachas for seven days. After he becomes Tahor and performs "Tiglachas Tum'ah," he must wait another seven days for "Tiglachas Taharah." Therefore, Rebbi Eliezer and the Rabanan argue exclusively about the Halachah of "Gidul Se'ar" for a Nazir whose hair was cut after "Yom Melos." Hence, the Gemara makes a very straightforward statement when it says that if a seven-day growth of hair remains on his head after his hair was cut after "Yom Melos," Rebbi Eliezer does not require him to grow more hair before he brings his Korbanos. According to the Rabanan, though, such a Nazir is required to wait until he has a thirty-day growth of hair on his head.

OTHER D.A.F. RESOURCES
ON THIS DAF