THE TESTIMONY OF YEVAMOS (cont.)
Question (Rava): What is R. Elazar's reason?
Does he hold that Leah's testimony [always] helps for her Tzarah Sarah?
Or, does he hold that Leah would not ruin herself (do Yibum if her husband were alive) to ruin Sarah?
These answers disagree about whether or not Sarah may remarry before Leah:
If Leah's testimony helps for her Sarah, Sarah may remarry first;
If Sarah is permitted only because Leah would not ruin herself, Sarah may not remarry before Leah.
Answer #1 (Mishnah - R. Elazar): Since they were permitted to the Yevamim, they are permitted to others.
If Sarah is permitted because Leah would not ruin herself, we understand why Sarah is permitted only after Leah remarries;
However, if Leah's testimony helps for Sarah, it should help even if Leah didn't marry!
Conclusion: The reason is because Leah would not ruin herself.
Rejection: No, perhaps R. Elazar addresses Chachamim according to their opinion;
I hold that Leah's testimony helps for Sarah, even if Leah didn't remarry.
You should at least agree that if Leah remarried Sarah may remarry, for Leah would not ruin herself!
Chachamim: A woman would ruin herself to ruin her Tzarah.
Answer #2 (Mishnah): If a woman went overseas with her husband and returned and said that he died, she may remarry and she receives her Kesuvah. Her Tzarah is forbidden;
(Beraisa - R. Elazar): Since she was permitted, her Tzarah is also permitted.
Rejection: Perhaps R. Elazar means that since she was permitted and remarried, her Tzarah is permitted.
Question: We should be concerned lest she remarried because she was divorced, but her ex-husband is still alive, and she lies to ruin her Tzarah!
Answer: The Tzarah is permitted only if Leah married a Kohen. She would not do so if she was divorced.
WHAT MUST BE SEEN TO TESTIFY THAT A MAN DIED
(Mishnah): Witnesses can testify only if they saw the face, including the nose. This is even if there are Simanim on his body and clothing.
They can testify only if they saw him die. This is even if they saw him cut up, hanging, and a wild animal eating him.
They can testify only if they saw the body within three days of death;
R. Yehudah ben Bava says, it depends on the deceased, the place and the time.
(Gemara - Beraisa): If they only saw the forehead but not the face, or vice-versa, they cannot testify. They must see both, including the nose.
(Abaye): We learn from "Hakaras Peneihem Onsah Bam".
Aba bar Marsa owed money to the Exilarch's house. He stuck remnants of garments on his forehead, and they did not recognize him.
(Mishnah): Even if there are Simanim ...
Inference: This shows that mid'Oraisa we may not rely on Simanim.
Contradiction (Mishnah): If (a messenger to give a Get lost the Get, and) it was found tied to his wallet or ring, or if it was found among his clothes, even after a long time, the Get may be used.
Answer (Abaye): Tana'im argue about whether or not mid'Oraisa we may rely on Simanim:
(Beraisa): We may not identify a dead man based on a wart to permit his wife to remarry;
R. Eliezer ben Mahavoy permits this.
Suggestion: Chachamim hold that we may rely on Simanim mid'Oraisa; R. Eliezer says, it is only mid'Rabanan.
Version #1 - Rejection (Rava): All hold that Simanim are mid'Oraisa;
Version #1a: They argue about whether we are concerned lest someone born at the same time with the same Mazel has an identical wart.
Version #1b: They argue about whether or not warts are prone to change after death.
Version #2 - Rejection (Rava): All hold that (regular) Simanim are mid'Rabanan. They argue about whether or not a wart is an exceptional Siman (which works mid'Oraisa).
Question: In Version #1, Rava says that Simanim are mid'Oraisa. However, the Mishnah says (that witnesses can testify only if they saw the face) even if there are Simanim on his body and clothes!
Answer - part 1: The Simanim on his body are (vague and unreliable, e.g.) he is tall or short;
Answer #1 - part 2 (regarding clothing): We cannot rely on Simanim on his clothing, for we are concerned lest someone borrowed his clothing.
Question: If we are concerned that someone borrowed his clothing, why do we return a donkey based on a sign on the Ukaf (wood placed above the saddle)? We should be concerned lest the Ukaf was borrowed!
Answer: One does not borrow another's Ukaf, lest it wound his donkey.
Question: If a Get was found tied to a man's wallet or ring, why may it be used? Perhaps it is a different Get of one who borrowed his wallet or ring!
Answer: One does not lend his (signet) ring, lest the borrower forge (make an identical ring) with it. One does not lend his wallet, lest it harm his Mazel.
Answer #2 - part 2 (regarding clothing): The Simanim on his clothes are (vague and unreliable, e.g.) they are white or black.
ONE WHO WAS CUT UP
(Mishnah): Even if they saw that he was cut up ... (they cannot testify).
Inference: A cut up person may live.
Contradiction (Mishnah): A person is not Tamei until he dies, even if he is cut up, even Goses (about to die).
Inference: He is not dead, but he will not live!
Answer #1 (Abaye): Tana'im argue about whether he can survive:
(Beraisa): We can testify that a cut up person died, but not one who was hanging;
R. Shimon ben Elazar says, we cannot testify even about one who was cut up, since he could be cauterized and live.
Objection: The Mishnah cannot be R. Shimon ben Elazar, for the Seifa is unlike him!
(Mishnah): A case occurred in Asya in which a man was lowered into water. When they lifted him, only his leg came up. Chachamim ruled that his wife may remarry only if above the knee came up.
Answer: There is different, for water aggravates the wound.
Question: Rabah bar bar Chanah saw a man cut up his camel. It died while still neighing!
Answer #1 (Abaye): That was a weak camel.
Answer #2 (Rava): The Mishnah discusses one cut with a burning-hot knife. All agree that in such a case he can live.
(Mishnah): A wild animal was eating from him...
(Rav Yehudah): This is only if it was eating from a place where a person does not die. If it was eating from a place from where a person dies, we may testify.
(Rav Yehudah): If both Simanim (foodpipe and windpipe) of a man were cut, or the majority of both, and he fled, we may testify that he died.
Question: Rav Yehudah said that if such a man authorized to divorce his wife, we write and give the Get!
Answer: He is living, but he will die.
Question: If so, one who cut the Simanim of a person b'Shogeg should be exiled, but a Beraisa says that he is not!
Answer (R. Oshaya): We are concerned that the wind precipitated his death, or he himself did [through quivering].