The Babylonian Talmud

Niddah

 

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 2a

CHAPTER 1

MISHNAH. . SHAMMAI RULED: FOR ALL WOMEN1 IT SUFFICES [TO RECKON] THEIR [PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM THE] TIME [OF THEIR DISCOVERING THE FLOW].2 HILLEL RULED: [THEIR PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS IS TO BE RECKONED RETROSPECTIVELY] FROM THE [PREVIOUS] EXAMINATION TO THE [LAST] EXAMINATION,3 EVEN [IF THE INTERVAL EXTENDED] FOR MANY DAYS. THE SAGES, HOWEVER, RULED: [THE LAW IS] NEITHER IN AGREEMENT WITH THE OPINION OF THE FORMER4 NOR IN AGREEMENT WITH THAT OF THE LATTER,5 BUT [THE WOMEN ARE DEEMED TO HAVE BEEN UNCLEAN] DURING [THE PRECEDING] TWENTY-FOUR HOURS6 WHEN THIS7 LESSENS THE PERIOD FROM THE [PREVIOUS] EXAMINATION TO THE [LAST] EXAMINATION, AND DURING THE PERIOD FROM THE [PREVIOUS] EXAMINATION TO THE [LAST] EXAMINATION WHEN THIS8 LESSENS THE PERIOD OF TWENTY-FOUR HOURS.

FOR ANY WOMAN WHO HAS A SETTLED PERIOD IT SUFFICES [TO RECKON HER PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME SHE DISCOVERS THE FLOW: AND IF A WOMAN USES TESTING-RAGS WHEN9 SHE HAS MARITAL INTERCOURSE, THIS IS INDEED10 LIKE AN EXAMINATION WHICH LESSENS EITHER THE PERIOD OF THE [PAST] TWENTY-FOUR HOURS OR THE PERIOD FROM THE [PREVIOUS] EXAMINATION TO THE [LAST] EXAMINATION. HOW [IS ONE TO UNDERSTAND THE RULING THAT]11 IT SUFFICES [TO RECKON HER PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME SHE DISCOVERS THE FLOW'? IF SHE WAS SITTING ON A BED AND WAS OCCUPIED WITH RITUALLY CLEAN OBJECTS12 AND, HAVING LEFT THEM, OBSERVED A FLOW, SHE IS RITUALLY UNCLEAN WHILE THE OBJECTS13 REMAIN RITUALLY CLEAN.

ALTHOUGH THEY14 HAVE LAID DOWN THAT SHE15 CONVEYS UNCLEANNESS FOR A PERIOD OF TWENTY-FOUR HOURS [RETROSPECTIVELY]16 SHE COUNTS [THE SEVEN DAYS OF HER MENSTRUATION]17 ONLY FROM THE TIME SHE OBSERVED THE FLOW.

GEMARA. What is Shammai's reason?18 - He is of the opinion that a woman19 should be presumed to enjoy20 her usual status, and the status of the woman21 was one of cleanness.22 And Hillel?23 - When is it said that an object is presumed to possess its usual status? Only when the unfavourable condition24 is not internal;25 but as regards a woman,

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(1) In respect of menstrual uncleanness.
(2) It being assumed that up to that moment there was no vestige of blood even in the ante-chamber (cf. Mishnah infra 40a). Hence only objects that were touched by the woman after the discovery become ritually unclean. All objects touched prior to that moment remain clean.
(3) When she discovered the discharge. If the last, for instance, took place at 5 p.m. on a Thursday and the previous one at 8 a.m. on the preceding Sunday, all objects touched since the Sunday examination are deemed to be ritually unclean because it is assumed that some blood, prevented from leaving the body by the walls of the womb, may have made its way into the ante-chamber immediately after that examination.
(4) Shammai, whose ruling is too lenient.
(5) Hillel, who is too restrictive, since blood could not well be retained in the ante-chamber for a very long time.
(6) Me'eth le'eth, lit., 'from time to time'.
(7) An interval of more than twenty-four hours having intervened between the two examinations.
(8) The two examinations having taken place within twenty-four hours.
(9) Before and after.
(10) Lit., 'behold this'.
(11) In the case of 'ANY WOMAN WHO HAS A SETTLED PERIOD (supra).
(12) In the preparation, for instance, of foodstuffs.
(13) The bed, and the foodstuffs which she handled.
(14) The Sages.
(15) A woman who had no settled period.
(16) From the time she observed the flow.
(17) Prescribed in Lev. XV, 19.
(18) For his ruling in the first clause of our Mishnah.
(19) About whom it is uncertain when her flow began.
(20) Lit., 'cause to stand . . . upon'.
(21) Spoken of in our Mishnah.
(22) Since she was occupied with ritually clean things.
(23) How, in view of Shammai's reason, can he maintain his ruling.
(24) Which might impair its status.
(25) But is due to some external cause. MS.M. adds, 'as, for instance, when it is doubtful whether one did, or did not touch (an unclean object)'.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 2b

since what she observes [is a discharge] from her own body, it cannot be held that she is presumed to have her usual status.

Wherein, however, does this1 essentially differ2 from that of a ritual bath of which we learnt: If a ritual bath3 was measured and found lacking, all purifications that have heretofore been effected through it, whether it was in a public4 or in a private domain,5 are regarded6 as unclean?7 According to Shammai8 the difficulty arises from 'heretofore'; while according to Hillel the difficulty arises, does it not, from the certainty; for, whereas in the case of the twenty-four hours' period9 of the menstruant [any terumah10 she touched] is only held in suspense, it being neither eaten nor burned,11 here12 the uncleanness is regarded as a certainty?13 - The reason14 there15 is that it may be postulated that the unclean person shall be regarded as being in his presumptive status16 and assumed17 not to have performed proper immersion.18 On the contrary! Why not postulate that the ritual bath shall be regarded as being in its presumptive status of validity and assume that it was not lacking?19 - Surely a lacking [bath] is before you. But in this case also,20 is not blood before you? - She has only just now observed it.21 In that case22 too, is it not23 lacking only just now?24 - What a comparison!25 In that case22 it might well be presumed that the water was gradually diminishing,26 but can it here also be presumed that she was gradually observing the flow?27 - What an objection is this! Is it not possible that she observed the blood only when it was coming in profusion?28 - In the former case29 there are two unfavourable factors30 while in the latter31 there is only one unfavourable factor.32 Wherein, however,33 does this31 differ from the case of the jug concerning which we have learnt:34 If one tested35 a wine jug for the purpose of periodically taking from it terumah [for wine kept in other jugs]36 and, subsequently,37 it was found to contain vinegar,38 all39 three days it is certain,40 and after that it is doubtful.41 Now does not this42 present an objection against Shammai?43 - The reason there44 is that it can be postulated that the tebel45 shall be regarded as having its presumptive status, and then it may be presumed that it had not been ritually prepared.46 On the contrary! Why not postulate that the wine be regarded as having its presumptive status47 and then it might be assumed that it had not become sour? - Surely it stands sour before you. But in that case also48 is there not blood before you? - She has only just now observed it. But in that case too49 is it not sour only just now? - What a comparison! In the latter case49 it might well be presumed that the wine turned sour by degrees,50 but can it also be said in the former case48 that she observed the flow by degrees?51 - What an objection is this! Is it not possible that she observed the blood only when it came in profusion? - In the former case49 there are two unfavourable factors52 while in the latter48 there is only one such factor.53

An incongruity, however, was pointed out between the case of the jug54 and that of the ritual bath:55 Wherein lies the essential difference between the two56 that in the latter case57 [the retrospective uncleanness is regarded as] a certainty while in that of the former58 [the uncleanness of the terumah is deemed] doubtful? - R. Hanina of Sura replied: Who is the author [of the ruling concerning the] jug? R. Simeon, who in respect of a ritual bath also regards [the retrospective uncleanness] as a matter of doubt; for it was taught:59 If a ritual bath was measured and found lacking all purifications heretofore effected through it whether it was in a public or in a private domain, are regarded as unclean.60 R. Simeon ruled: In a public domain they are regarded as clean but in a private domain they are regarded as being in suspense.61

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(1) The case of the menstruant.
(2) Both according to Shammai and Hillel.
(3) Which must contain a minimum of forty se'ah of water.
(4) Where a case of doubtful uncleanness is elsewhere regarded as clean.
(5) Where a doubtful case is regarded as unclean (cf. prev. n.).
(6) Since the bath is now ritually invalid.
(7) Mik. II, 2.
(8) Who ruled that the period of uncleanness of menstruant women begins FROM THE TIME OF THEIR DISCOVERY OF THE FLOW and not retrospectively.
(9) According to the Sages; or the interval between her last and previous examinations according to Hillel (v. our Mishnah).
(10) V. Glos.
(11) As explained infra 6a.
(12) In the case of the ritual bath, where it is categorically stated 'are retrospectively unclean'.
(13) And the terumah must be burned.
(14) For the restrictions.
(15) The case of the ritual bath.
(16) Of uncleanness, which before valid immersion is a certainty.
(17) On account of the discovered invalidity of the ritual bath he used.
(18) Since the invalidity may have begun at the time the immersion took place.
(19) At the time of the immersion.
(20) That of the menstruant.
(21) Hence there is no need to assume that the flow began any earlier.
(22) Ritual bath.
(23) As far as is known.
(24) Why then should it be assumed to have been lacking earlier?
(25) Lit., 'thus, now'.
(26) So that the presumptive state of validity has long ago been impaired. And since it is not known when the process began the restrictive ruling given is well justified.
(27) Obviously not. Hence it may well be assumed that the flow began only at the moment when it was discovered.
(28) While in fact a particle of it which is quite sufficient to cause uncleanness (cf. infra 40) may have been in the antechamber long before she was aware of any flow.
(29) That of the ritual bath.
(30) The assumption that the unclean person was in his confirmed status of uncleanness and the lacking condition of the bath.
(31) The case of the menstruant.
(32) The present observation of the blood. Since against this factor there is the favourable one of the woman's previous condition of confirmed cleanness it may well be assumed that the flow began not earlier than the moment when it was observed.
(33) According to Shammai.
(34) What follows is a Baraitha (Tosef. Ter. IV) and is quoted here as Mishnah. This is not an isolated instance. V. Higger Ozar ha Beraitoth, pp. 37ff.
(35) Either by tasting some of its contents (Rashi) the terumah and tithe having been duly taken from it (Rashb. B.B. 96a) or by smelling it (Tosaf. l.c.).
(36) In order that he might be allowed to use the wine in the other jugs he keeps this one jug for the purpose of taking from it daily, or whenever required, the appropriate quantity of wine as terumah or tithe for the wine in the other jugs.
(37) After a month or two, for instance.
(38) A liquid which (according to Rabbi, B.B. 84b) may not be used as terumah for wine.
(39) So MS.M. and Rashal. Cur. edd. in parenthesis insert 'the first'.
(40) V. following note.
(41) Tosef. Ter. IV. The meaning according to R. Johanan (B.B. 96a) is that during the first three days after the test the contents of the jug are regarded as 'certain' wine because in less than three days wine cannot turn into vinegar. Even if it be assumed that it began to turn sour immediately after the test it could not be called 'vinegar' until full three days had elapsed. The terumah given within these three days must inevitably have been wine and consequently have exempted the wine in the other jugs. After three days the contents are regarded as 'doubtful wine' since it is possible that the wine began to deteriorate only three days before it was found to be vinegar, into which it may have turned just at that moment. As the terumah is accordingly of a doubtful nature another portion must be set aside for the purpose. The meaning according to R. Joshua b. Levi (ibid.) is that during the last three days prior to the discovery that it had turned into vinegar, it is regarded as 'certain' vinegar because, in his opinion, the contents are deemed to be vinegar as soon as the wine begins to deteriorate in odour though its taste may still be that of wine. Since it is now proper vinegar the deterioration must have commenced at least three days earlier. Prior to the three days it is regarded as 'doubtful' because it is unknown when the deterioration had set in.
(42) The ruling in the Baraitha cited according to which where unfavourable factors exist restrictions are applied retrospectively.
(43) Who ruled in our Mishnah that menstruants are not deemed to have been unclean for any length of time retrospectively, but reckon their period of uncleanness only from the moment OF THEIR DISCOVERING THE FLOW.
(44) In the Baraitha cited.
(45) The untithed wine, v. Glos.
(46) Sc. that the priestly and levitical dues have not been duly set aside for it.
(47) Of being wine.
(48) That of the menstruant.
(49) That of the jug of wine.
(50) So that it lost its status long before it completely turned into vinegar.
(51) Of course not. Hence the assumption that the flow began the moment it was discovered.
(52) The confirmed status of the wine as tebel and its present sour condition.
(53) The present observation of the blood.
(54) Cited supra from Tosef. Ter. IV.
(55) Mik. II, 2, also cited supra.
(56) In both of which (as stated supra) there are equally two unfavourable factors.
(57) Mik. II, 2.
(58) Cited supra from Tosef. Ter. IV.
(59) So marg. gl. Cur. edd. 'we learnt'.
(60) Supra q.v. notes.
(61) Tosef. Mik. I; the reason is discussed infra.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 3a

And both1 deduced it2 from no other law than that of sotah.3 The Rabbis4 hold [that the law of the ritual bath is the same] as that of sotah; as [the offence of] the sotah is a matter of doubt and is regarded as a certainty5 so here also6 [where the uncleanness is] a matter of doubt it is regarded as a certainty. If [the inference, however, is made] from the sotah might it not be argued: It is like the sotah in this respect, viz., that as the sotah is clean [if she is suspected of an offence] in a public domain7 so should [all the purifications effected in] this case also6 be regarded as clean [if the bath was] in a public domain? - What a comparison!8 There9 the cause10 is seclusion11 but seclusion in a public domain is impossible,12 but here,6 the cause13 being the deficiency,14 what matters it whether the deficiency takes place in a public, or in a private domain?15 And should you argue: Is not every doubtful case of ritual uncleanness in a public domain regarded as clean [it could be retorted:] Since [in the case of the bath] there are two unfavourable factors16 it is regarded as certain uncleanness. R. Simeon, however, holds [that the law of the ritual bath is the same as that of sotah [in this respect]: As the sotah is regarded as clean [where she is suspected of an offence] in a public domain so also here17 [are all the purifications effected regarded as] clean [if the bath was] In a public domain. If [the inference, however, is made] from the sotah, might it not be argued: It is like the sotah in this respect viz., that as the sotah [if suspected of the offence] in a private domain is regarded as definitely unclean so should also [all purifications effected in this case] be deemed to be definitely unclean [where the bath was] in a private domain? - What a comparison!18 In that case19 there is some basis for the suspicion,20 seeing that he21 had warned her and she had secluded herself with the stranger; what basis for uncleanness,20 however, is there here?22

And if you prefer I might say that this is R. Simeon's reason:23 He infers the law of the termination of uncleanness24 from that of the inception of uncleanness;25 as with the inception of uncleanness if it is doubtful whether an object has or has not touched an uncleanness in a public domain it is deemed to be clean, so also with the termination of uncleanness, if it is doubtful whether an object had been duly immersed or not, in a public domain it is deemed to be clean. And the Rabbis?26 - What an inference!27 There,28 since the man is in the presumptive status of ritual cleanness, we cannot on account of a doubt transfer him to a state of uncleanness, but here,29 seeing that the man is in the presumptive status of uncleanness, we cannot on account of a doubt release him from his uncleanness.

Wherein, however, does this30 essentially differ31 from the case of an alley of which we learnt: If a dead creeping thing was found in an alley it causes ritual uncleanness retrospectively32 to such time as one can testify, 'I examined this alley and there was no creeping thing in it',33 or to such time as it was last swept?34 - There35 also, since there are creeping things from the alley itself and also creeping things that make their way into it from the outside world, the case is the same as one that has two unfavourable factors. And if you prefer I might reply,36 This is Shammai's reason:37 Because a woman is herself conscious [when she suffers a flow].38 And Hillel?39 - She might have thought that the sensation40 was that of urine. As to Shammai, is there not [the possibility of suffering a flow while] asleep?41 - A woman asleep too would42 awake on account of the pain,43 as is the case where one feels a discharge of urine.44 But is there not the case of an imbecile?45 - Shammai agrees46 in the case of an imbecile. But did he not state, ALL WOMEN?47 - [He meant:] All sensible women. Then why did he not merely state WOMEN?48 - He intended to indicate that the law is not in agreement with R. Eliezer; for R. Eliezer mentioned 'Four classes of women'49 and no more, hence he50 informed us [that the law applies to] ALL WOMEN. But is there not the case of stains?51 Must we then52 assume that we learnt the Mishnah about stains53 in disagreement with Shammai? - Abaye replied: Shammai agrees54 in the case of stains. What is the reason? - Since she was neither handling a slaughtered bird nor was she passing through the butchers' market, whence could that blood have come?55 And56 if you prefer I might reply, This is Shammai's reason: If in fact any blood were there57 it would have flowed out earlier.58 And Hillel?59 - The walls of the womb may have held it back.60 And Shammai?61 - The walls of the womb do not hold blood back. But what can be said for a woman62 who63 uses an absorbent in her marital intercourse?64 - Abaye replied: Shammai agrees65 in the case of one who uses an absorbent,66 Raba replied: An absorbent too [does not affect Shammai's ruling, since] perspiration causes it to shrink.67 Raba, however, agrees68 in the case of a tightly packed absorbent.69

What, however, is the practical difference between the latter explanations70 and the former explanation?71

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(1) R. Simeon and the first Tanna.
(2) Each his respective rulings in the Baraitha just cited.
(3) V. Glos., in connection with whom Scripture speaks of uncleanness or defilement (cf. Num. V, 13).
(4) Sc. the first Tanna (cf. supra n. 7).
(5) A sotah, until her innocence is proved by the test (cf. Num. V, 15-28), being definitely forbidden to her husband.
(6) The case of the ritual bath under discussion.
(7) Where no privacy is possible.
(8) Lit., 'thus, now'.
(9) Sotah.
(10) Of the woman's uncleanness or prohibition to her husband.
(11) Of the woman with the suspected stranger.
(12) Hence the ruling that in such a case the woman is deemed clean.
(13) Of uncleanness.
(14) Of the water in the bath.
(15) Nothing. Hence the Rabbis' ruling that all purifications effected, irrespective of domain, are deemed to be unclean.
(16) As pointed out supra 2b.
(17) The case of the ritual bath under discussion.
(18) Lit., 'thus, now'.
(19) Sotah.
(20) Lit., 'there are feet for the thing'
(21) Her husband.
(22) In the case of the bath. As there is no basis whatever for the assumption that this deficiency occurred before the purifications had been effected it may well be assumed that it occurred afterwards immediately before the bath was measured. It has thus been shown, as R. Hanina replied supra, that according to R. Simeon all cases of doubtful uncleanness in a private domain where there is no basis for the affirmation of the uncleanness, are regarded as being in suspense.
(23) For holding doubtful cases of uncleanness in a public domain to be clean.
(24) Sc. ritual immersion which takes place when the period of uncleanness is concluded.
(25) I.e., uncleanness contracted from coming in contact with an unclean object.
(26) How, in view of R. Simeon's inference, could they maintain (v. supra 2b ad fin.) that 'all purifications . . . whether it was in a public or in a private domain, are unclean'?
(27) Lit., 'thus, now'.
(28) The case of the inception of uncleanness.
(29) In a case of termination of uncleanness.
(30) The case of the menstruant in our Mishnah.
(31) According to Shammai.
(32) To all clean objects that were in the alley prior to its discovery.
(33) Sc. only clean objects that were in the alley prior to that examination are ritually clean since the examination has established that during that time there was no creeping thing in the alley.
(34) Infra 56a; and no creeping thing was found. The sweeping, which is presumably accompanied by a search for any unclean things, has the same force as a direct examination. Hence (cf. prev. n.) only objects that were in the alley prior to the sweeping are clean while those that were there after the sweeping, since a creeping thing may have fallen into the alley immediately after the sweeping was over, are regarded as unclean. Now seeing that here uncleanness in a doubtful case is caused retrospectively, why does Shammai in our Mishnah restrict the period of uncleanness to the time of THEIR DISCOVERING only?
(35) The case of the alley in the Mishnah just cited.
(36) To the objection raised against Shammai.
(37) For his ruling that menstruants begin their period of uncleanness from the time OF THEIR DISCOVERING OF THE FLOW only and not, as in the case of the alley, retrospectively.
(38) As she did not feel any prior to her present discovery it may be safely assumed that previously there had not been any.
(39) How, in view of this argument, can he maintain that a menstruant's uncleanness is RECKONED RETROSPECTIVELY?
(40) Of the menstrual flow.
(41) When the woman is unconscious of it. As this is quite possible, why does not Shammai extend the period of uncleanness retrospectively?
(42) In Shammai's opinion.
(43) Of the flow.
(44) As she did not awake, it may well be presumed that the flow began just before its discovery.
(45) Who is incapable of distinguishing the first appearance of a flow.
(46) That the period of uncleanness extends retrospectively.
(47) Which presumably includes the imbecile also.
(48) Omitting 'ALL'.
(49) Infra 7a.
(50) Shammai.
(51) Of menstrual blood, which (v. infra 56a) cause uncleanness retrospectively, though prior to the moment of its discharge the woman was unaware of any flow.
(52) Since Shammai does not extend the unclean period retrospectively, maintaining that a woman is invariably aware when her flow first appears.
(53) Where it was ruled that a stain causes uncleanness even where the woman had felt no flow whatever.
(54) That the menstruant's uncleanness is extended retrospectively.
(55) Hence it must be assumed to have come from the woman's menstrual flow.
(56) So Bah. Cur. edd. omit 'and'.
(57) Sc. prior to its discovery.
(58) As none flowed out it may well be assumed that the flow began only just before it had been discovered.
(59) Sc. how can he maintain his ruling in view of the argument here advanced for Shammai?
(60) As, however, it might have made its way to the ante-chamber the period of uncleanness must extend from that time onwards.
(61) Cf. prev. n. but one mut. mut.
(62) Of the three classes enumerated infra 45a.
(63) To prevent conception.
(64) As the material used would also absorb any menstrual blood, there could be no proof that the discharge did not begin prior to the discovery. How then could Shammai rule that the menstrual uncleanness begins only at 'THE TIME OF THEIR DISCOVERING THE FLOW'?
(65) That menstrual uncleanness is reckoned retrospectively.
(66) Cf. prev. n. but one.
(67) Lit., 'on account of perspiration it inevitably shrinks' and consequently, enables the blood to pass out. As no blood appeared prior to the discovery Shammai may well maintain that the uncleanness does not begin prior to the DISCOVERING OF THE FLOW.
(68) With Abaye.
(69) Since the blood cannot pass through it.
(70) That (a) 'a woman feels' and (b) 'it would have flowed out earlier' (supra).
(71) Supra 2a, 'a woman should be presumed to enjoy her usual status'.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 3b

- The practical difference between them is the possibility of pointing out an incongruity [between the ruling in our Mishnah and the rulings concerning] the jug, the ritual bath and the alley:1 According to the former explanation such an incongruity may justifiably be pointed out1 while according to the latter explanations such an incongruity does not exist. But what practical difference is there [in the case of the latter] between the one and the other explanation? - According to Abaye2 there is the case of the absorbent,3 and according to Raba2 there is the case of the absorbent tightly packed.4 It was taught in agreement with that explanation that 'if in fact any blood were there it would have flowed out earlier': Hillel said to Shammai, 'Do you not agree that in the case of a basket one corner of which was used for levitically clean objects while in another corner was found5 a dead creeping thing, the objects that were formerly clean are regarded as unclean retrospectively?'6 - 'Indeed', the other replied. 'Then [Hillel rejoined] what is the difference between the one case and the other?'7 - 'The one8 [Shammai replied] has a bottom,9 the other10 has none.'11 Raba stated: Shammai's reason12 is to avoid13 neglect of marital life.14 So it was also taught: Shammai said to Hillel, 'If so,15 you cause the daughters of Israel the neglect of marital life'.16 Now according to him17 who taught this explanation18 [it may be objected:] Was it not taught,19 in agreement with the former explanation,18 that 'if in fact any blood were there it would have flowed out earlier'? - There19 it was Hillel who erred. He thought that Shammai's reason was that if any blood had been there it would have flowed out earlier and, therefore, he raised an objection against him from the case of the basket,20 but Shammai answered him, 'My reason is the avoidance of the neglect of marital life; and as regards your erroneous assumption too, in consequence of which you raised an objection from the case of the basket, the latter has a bottom while the former has none.21

But according to him who taught22 the first explanation23 [it may be objected:] Was it not in fact taught, in agreement with the latter version, that the reason is to avoid the neglect of propagation? It is this that Hillel in fact said to Shammai, 'Even if you give as your reason that "if in fact any blood were there it would have flowed out earlier," you must nevertheless make a fence24 for your ruling, for why should this law be different from all the Torah for which a fence is made?' To this the other replied, 'If so,25 you would cause the daughters of Israel to neglect marital life'.26 And Hillel?27 - 'Do I [he can reply] speak of marital life?28 I only speak of levitical cleanness'. And Shammai?29 - [Restrictions, he holds, must] not [be imposed] even as regards levitical cleanness, since otherwise30 the man might have scruples31 and keep away altogether.32

(Mnemonic:33 Bottom examined covered in a corner.)

It was stated: If one corner of a basket was used for levitically clean objects and a dead creeping thing was found in another corner, Hezekiah ruled that the objects that were formerly34 clean remain clean. R. Johanan ruled: The objects that were formerly35 clean are now regarded as retrospectively unclean. But do not Shammai36 and Hillel in fact agree37 in the case of a basket that the objects that were formerly clean are deemed to be retrospectively unclean?38 - Shammai and Hillel agree39 only in the case of a basket that had a bottom,40 while Hezekiah and R. Johanan differ in that of a basket that had no bottom.41 But if the basket had no bottom what could be R. Johanan's reason?42 - It had no bottom, but it had43 a rim.44 But surely, it was taught:45 'If a man drew46 ten buckets of water one after the other47 and a creeping thing was found in one of them, this one48 is unclean and all the others49 remain clean';50 and in connection with this Resh Lakish citing R. Jannai stated, 'This51 was taught only in a case where the bucket had no rim52 but if it had a rim53 all the buckets of water are deemed to be unclean.' Now must it be assumed that Hezekiah54 does not adopt the view of R. Jannai?55 - [No, since] water56 glides57 while fruits58 do not glide;59 or else [it may be replied] one is not particular with water60 but with fruit one is particular.61 And if you prefer I might reply: Shammai and Hillel agree62 only in respect of a basket that was not [previously]63 examined64

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(1) Supra 2b and 3a.
(2) Supra 3a ad fin.
(3) If the explanation is that 'a woman feels' the period of menstrual uncleanness would begin at the time of the discovery of the blood even where a woman used an absorbent, while if the explanation is that 'it would have flowed out earlier' uncleanness would begin retrospectively since the discharge might have begun earlier but was soaked up by the absorbent.
(4) Cf. prev. note.
(5) After the clean objects had been removed from the basket.
(6) Lit., 'the former clean are unclean', because it is possible that the creeping thing was in the basket before the objects had been removed and that it consequently imparted uncleanness to the basket from which it was conveyed to the objects. If the creeping thing, it may be added, had been found in the same corner in which the objects were previously kept there could be no question that the latter remain clean, since it may be regarded as certain that they had been removed before the creeping thing had fallen into the basket. For if it had been there earlier it would have been discovered at the time the objects were being removed.
(7) Sc. why is the uncleanness deemed to be retrospective in the case of the basket and not in that of the menstruant?
(8) The basket.
(9) Where the creeping thing may well have rested quite unobserved by the person who removed the objects.
(10) The menstruant.
(11) Sc. had any blood found its way to the ante-chamber it would inevitably have flowed out.
(12) For his ruling in the first clause of our Mishnah that the uncleanness is not retrospective.
(13) Lit., 'on account of'.
(14) Lit., propagation'. Were it to be assumed that blood can make its way to the vagina even when the woman is unconscious of it, men would abstain from all marital intercourse in order to avoid possible complications of uncleanness.
(15) That menstrual uncleanness is to be retrospective (v. our Mishnah).
(16) Cf. note 10.
(17) Raba.
(18) Of Shammai's reason.
(19) Supra.
(20) Where it is not assumed (on the analogy of the blood of the menstruant) that if a creeping thing had been there it would have come out together with the objects when the basket had been cleared.
(21) Cf. notes supra.
(22) Supra.
(23) That Shammai's reason is that if any blood had been in the vagina it would have flowed out earlier.
(24) I.e., add some restriction (retrospective uncleanness) in order to avoid possible transgression of the law itself.
(25) That menstrual uncleanness is to be retrospective (v. our Mishnah).
(26) V. supra p. 11 n. 10.
(27) How, in view of this reply, could he maintain his ruling.
(28) No. He did not say that any marital relations were to be affected.
(29) Cf. note 8 mut. mut.
(30) Lit., 'for if so', were retrospective uncleanness to be imposed.
(31) Owing to the possibility of some flow of blood in the vagina.
(32) Lit., 'his heart beats him and he separates (from his wife)'.
(33) Containing striking words or phrases from each of the four following explanations of the points on which Shammai and Hillel on the one hand and Hezekiah and R. Johanan on the other differ.
(34) Lit., 'the first'.
(35) Lit., 'the first'.
(36) So Bah and MS.M. Cur. edd. in parenthesis insert 'Beth'.
(37) Supra. - MS.M. reads, 'Does not Shammai agree with Hillel'.
(38) How then can Hezekiah differ from the unanimous ruling of both?
(39) Var. lec. 'Shammai agrees with Hillel' (MS.M.).
(40) And the objects were removed through the open top, so that it was quite possible for the creeping thing to be at the time of the removal at the bottom of the basket and thus to have escaped observation.
(41) And that was used while it was lying on its side. In such circumstances the objects would be removed by inverting the basket in which case all its contents, including any creeping thing that might have been there, would fall out.
(42) For treating the objects as unclean.
(43) Near the position of the bottom.
(44) Turning inwards, so that the creeping thing might have been caught by it and there remained unobserved.
(45) Var. lec., 'we learnt' (Bah citing Toh. IV, 4, which, however, differs slightly from the version here cited).
(46) With the same bucket.
(47) All of which were poured into one large tank.
(48) In which the creeping thing was found.
(49) Since no creeping thing was observed to be in them when they were being emptied into the tank.
(50) It being assumed that the creeping thing had not fallen into the bucket until it was filled for the last time.
(51) That all the others remain clean.
(52) Turning inwards so that the creeping thing could not possibly have remained in the bucket when it was tipped over the tank.
(53) On which the creeping thing might have been caught and remained unobserved at the time.
(54) Who, as explained supra in the case of the basket, holds the objects to be clean even where the basket had a rim.
(55) Is it likely, however, that Hezekiah would differ from such an authority?
(56) When the bucket is tipped.
(57) Hence it is not necessary to incline the bucket at too great an angle when it is being emptied. The creeping thing might, therefore, well have remained within the bucket, held by the rim and unobserved.
(58) From a basket.
(59) If the basket is only slightly inclined. As it must consequently be turned upside down before all the fruit it contains can be emptied it is quite impossible for the creeping thing to have remained within. If, therefore, one was subsequently found in the basket it may be safely assumed that it fell in after the clean objects had been removed.
(60) And does not mind if some of it remains in the bucket. Hence one does not tip the bucket very much, and the creeping thing might consequently have remained within the bucket behind the rim.
(61) And turns the bucket upside down in order to get out even the last fruit (cf. prev. n. but one mut. mut.).
(62) Var. lec. 'Shammai agrees with Hillel' (MS.M.).
(63) Before the clean objects were put into it.
(64) Hence it cannot be regarded as having a presumptive state of cleanness.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 4a

while Hezekiah and R. Johanan differ in the case of a basket that had been examined. One Master1 holds [the objects to be clean because the basket] surely had been examined,2 and the other Master3 [holds them to be unclean, since] it might be assumed that the creeping thing fell in just when the man4 removed his hand.5 But [the case of the basket,]6 surely, was taught in the same manner as that of the woman,7 and is not a woman8 deemed to be duly examined?9 Since the flow of blood from her body is a regular occurrence she is regarded as unexamined.10 And if you prefer I might reply:11 Shammai and Hillel agree12 only in respect of a basket that13 is uncovered,14 while Hezekiah and R. Johanan differ in respect of a covered basket .15 'Covered'! Then how [could the creeping thing]16 have fallen into it? - [This is possible when] for instance, the way of using it was by [opening and closing] its cover.17 But [the case of the basket] surely, was taught in the same manner as that of the woman,18 and is not a woman19 in the condition of being covered?20 - Since the flow of blood from her body is a regular occurrence she is regarded as being in an uncovered condition.21 And if you prefer I might reply:22 Shammai and Hillel agree23 only in respect of the corner of a basket, while Hezekiah and R. Johanan differ in that of the corner of a room.24 But was not a 'basket' spoken of?25 - It is this that was meant:25 If a basket was used for clean objects in one corner of a room and, when it was moved into another corner,26 a creeping thing was found [in it while it was] in that other corner, Hezekiah holds that we do not presume the uncleanness found in one place27 to apply to another place,28 while R. Johanan holds that we do presume.29 But do we29 apply the rule of presumptive uncleanness? Have we not learnt: 'If a man touched someone in the night and he did not know whether it [was a person who was] alive or [one that was] dead, and in the morning when he got up he found him to be dead, R. Meir declares [the man] clean, but the Sages declare [him] to be unclean because all questions of uncleanness are determined by [the condition of the objects at] the time they are found',30 and in connection with this it was taught, 'As at the time they are found and in accordance with the place in which they are found'?31 And should you reply that this32 holds good only33 in respect of the law of burning34 but that in respect of the law of suspense it is well applied,35 have we not learnt, [it could be retorted,] If a needle36 was found37 full of rust or broken38 it is regarded as clean39 because all questions of uncleanness are determined by [the condition of the objects at] the time they are found?40 Now why should this be so?41 Why should it not rather be assumed that this needle was formerly42 in a sound condition43 and that it produced the rust just now?44 Furthermore, have we not learnt: If a burnt creeping thing was found upon olives and so also if a tattered45 rag46 was found upon them it is clean,47 because all [questions of] uncleanness are determined by [the conditions of the objects at] the time they are found?48 And should you reply that [the uncleanness is determined] in accordance with [the condition of the objects at] the time they are found, irrespective of whether the result is a relaxation49 or a restriction of the law,50 only in the place where they51 are found, but [if the doubt arises] in regard to the place in which they51 were not found52 the objects53 are not to be burned but are nevertheless to be held in suspense,54 was it not in fact taught,55 [it could be retorted,] If a loaf of bread was lying on a shelf under which56 lay an object of a minor degree of uncleanness,57 [the loaf,]58 although if it had fallen down it would have been impossible for it not to touch the unclean object,59 is clean, because it is assumed that a clean person entered there and removed it,60 unless one can testify, 'I am certain that no one entered there',61 in connection with which R. Eleazar stated: This assumption62 was required only in the case of a sloping shelf?63 - There64 the reason65 is as stated,66

____________________
(1) Hezekiah.
(2) And since at the time it contained no unclean objects a presumptive state of cleanness has been established.
(3) R. Johanan.
(4) Who conducted the examination.
(5) And the clean objects were still in the basket.
(6) On which Shammai and Hillel differ.
(7) Hillel having asked (supra 3b) 'what is the difference between the one case and the other?'
(8) Whose duty it is to examine herself every morning and evening.
(9) Apparently she is. Hence the basket also, which is in a similar condition (cf. prev. n. but one), must be deemed to be duly examined. Now since it was stated that the objects that were in the basket were regarded as retrospectively unclean an objection arises against Hezekiah.
(10) And so also the basket. Hence the justification for Hezekiah's ruling.
(11) To the difficulty raised supra 3b ad fin on the apparent contradiction between the joint ruling of Shammai and Hillel and the view of Hezekiah.
(12) MS.M. 'Shammai agrees with Hillel'.
(13) Though examined.
(14) So that the creeping thing might well have fallen in as soon as the examiner has removed his hand.
(15) Into which nothing could fall in by accident. Hence the justification for Hezekiah's ruling that the objects are clean.
(16) Which was actually found in it.
(17) Hezekiah is of the opinion that as long as clean objects are in the basket one is careful to keep it closed in order to prevent any unclean object from falling into it, but when the basket is empty care is no longer exercised and it is quite possible, therefore, for the creeping thing to have fallen in then. R. Johanan, however, holds that it is possible for the creeping thing to have fallen in unobserved, even while the clean objects were still in the basket, at a moment when the latter was opened in the ordinary course of use.
(18) Hillel having asked (supra 3b) 'what is the difference between the one case and the other?'
(19) Since no blood from the outside can flow into her body.
(20) Cf. supra p. 14, n. 19, mut. mut.
(21) And so also the basket. Hence the justification for Hezekiah's ruling.
(22) V. supra p. 14, n. 21.
(23) MS.M., 'Shammai agrees with Hillel'.
(24) This is explained presently. Lit., 'house'.
(25) In the statement, supra 3b ad fin, under discussion.
(26) After the objects had been taken out.
(27) If the unclean object was first discovered in the second place.
(28) It is rather assumed that the creeping thing fell into the basket when it was already in the second place after the objects had been removed from it.
(29) Even in such a case.
(30) Lit., 'as the time of their finding', Toh. V, 7.
(31) Sc. if in the morning the person was found dead in the place where he was touched in the night the man who touched him is unclean, but if he was found dead in a different place he remains clean. Thus it follows that we do not presume uncleanness found in one place to apply to another. How then could R. Johanan maintain that the rule is applied even in such a case?
(32) That the rule that we do not presume uncleanness found in one place to apply to another.
(33) Since the uncleanness is not a matter of certainty.
(34) If it was terumah; sc. the terumah need not be burned on account of the doubtful nature (cf. prev. n.) of its uncleanness.
(35) Lit., 'to suspend we suspend', i.e., the uncleanness of the objects thus affected is treated as a matter of doubt, and R. Johanan's ruling might be given the same interpretation and may thus be reconciled with that of the Mishnah just cited.
(36) That was known to be unclean.
(37) In contact with clean objects.
(38) Conditions which render it useless as a 'vessel'. Only a proper vessel contracts and conveys uncleanness.
(39) I.e., it (cf. prev. n.) conveys no uncleanness whatsoever to the objects with which it was found in contact.
(40) Toh. III, 5. Hence it is assumed that' the objects and the needle came in contact after the latter had lost the status of 'vessel' when it was no longer able to convey any uncleanness.
(41) That the objects should be regarded as absolutely clean and their uncleanness should not be regarded even as doubtful.
(42) When it first came in contact with the objects under discussion.
(43) When it duly conveyed its uncleanness to the objects.
(44) Since, however, the assumption is not made and the objects are not subjected either to a certain or to a suspended condition of uncleanness, even, presumably, where there was a change of place, how could R. Johanan maintain, even only in respect of a condition of suspense, that the rule of presumptive uncleanness is applied?
(45) Aliter: scorched.
(46) That was cut off from the unclean garment of a zab (v. Glos.).
(47) Sc. it is assumed that the creeping thing or the rag did not come in contact with the olives until after it had lost its uncleanness (the former by the burning and the latter by becoming tattered or scorched) and was unable to convey any.
(48) Toh. IX, 9. Now since the olives are not subjected even to the status of suspended uncleanness (as the categorical rule 'it is clean' implies) it follows that presumptive uncleanness does not apply when there was a change of time and so also, presumably, where there was a change of place. How then could R. Johanan maintain his ruling?
(49) As in the case of the needle and the rag (cited from Toh. III, 5 and IX, 9) where the objects are declared clean.
(50) Where a man touched some person in the night (cited from Toh. V, 7) in which case the man, according to the Sages, is decidedly unclean.
(51) The objects about which the doubt had arisen.
(52) I.e., whence the objects have been removed, as is the case with the basket with which R. Johanan was concerned.
(53) Terumah, for instance.
(54) And the same interpretation might also be given to R. Johanan's ruling which would thus be reconciled with the one cited from Toh. IX, 9.
(55) V. marg. glos. Cur. edd. 'we learnt'.
(56) On the ground.
(57) Middaf. This is now assumed to be an object (a garment, for instance) which, though not subject to midras (v. Glos.) uncleanness (which could convey uncleanness to both man and vessels) conveys nevertheless uncleanness to foodstuffs and the like, Pentateuchally.
(58) Found on the ground away from the unclean object.
(59) Which would have conveyed uncleanness to it.
(60) From the shelf, and placed it on the ground where it was found.
(61) Tosef. Toh. IV.
(62) 'That a clean person entered etc.'
(63) From which the loaf is most likely to slide down and fall on the unclean object below. Now, since even in such a case it is not presumed that the loaf fell upon the unclean object and contracted uncleanness before it rolled away to its present position, it follows that the rule of presumptive uncleanness is not applied when two different places are involved. How then could R. Johanan rule supra (3b ad fin.) that presumptive uncleanness is applied even (as in the case of the basket and the creeping thing) where two places are involved?
(64) In the Baraitha just cited.
(65) Why the rule of presumptive uncleanness is not applied to the loaf.
(66) Lit. - 'as he learned the reason'.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 4b

'Because it is assumed that a clean person entered there and removed it'.1 But why should it not be assumed here also2 that a raven came and dropped [the creeping thing into the basket]?3 - In the case of a man who acts4 with intention such an assumption5 is made, but in that of a raven which6 does not act with intention such an assumption7 is not made. But consider: The loaf8 is a case of doubtful uncleanness in a private domain. Now is not any case of doubtful uncleanness in a private domain regarded as unclean?9 - [The loaf is deemed to be unclean] because it is a thing that possesses no intelligence to answer questions,10 and any thing that possesses no intelligence to answer questions, irrespective of whether it was in a public or in a private domain, is in any doubtful case of uncleanness regarded as clean.11 And if you prefer I might reply: Here12 we are dealing with a Rabbinical uncleanness.13 A deduction [from the wording]14 also supports this view, for the expression used is 'middaf'15 which is analogous to the Scriptural phrase, 'a driven [niddaf] leaf'.16

THE SAGES, HOWEVER, RULED: [THE LAW IS] NEITHER IN AGREEMENT WITH THE OPINION OF THE FORMER NOR IN AGREEMENT WITH THAT OF THE LATTER etc. Our Rabbis taught: And the Sages ruled, [The law is] neither in agreement with the opinion of the former nor in agreement with that of the latter, neither [that is] in agreement with the opinion of Shammai who17 provided no fence for his ruling18 nor in agreement with the opinion of Hillel who19 restricted far too much,20 but [the women are deemed to be unclean] during the preceding twenty-four hours when this lessens the period from the [previous] examination to the [last] examination, and during the period from the [previous] examination to the [last] examination when this lessens the period of twenty-four hours. '[The women are deemed to be unclean] during the preceding twenty-four hours when this lessens the period from the [previous] examination to the [last] examination'. How is this to be understood? If a woman examined her body on a Sunday21 and found herself to be clean and then she spent Monday and Tuesday without holding any examination while on Wednesday she examined herself and found that she was unclean, it is not ruled that she should be deemed to be unclean retrospectively from the previous examination to the last examination but only [that she should be deemed to be unclean] during the preceding twenty-four hours. 'And during the period from the [previous] examination to the [last] examination when this lessens the period of twenty-four hours'. How is this to be understood? If the woman examined her body during the first hour of the day and found herself to be clean and then she spent the second and the third hour without holding any examination while in the fourth hour she examined herself and found that she was unclean, it is not ruled that she should be deemed to be unclean retrospectively for a period of twenty-four hours but only during the period from the previous examination to the last examination. But is it not obvious that, since she has examined herself during the first hour and found that she was clean, she is not to be deemed unclean retrospectively for twenty-four hours?22 - As it was taught, 'during the preceding twenty-four hours when this lessens the period from the [previous] examination to the [last] examination'23 it also stated,24 'during the period from the [previous] examination to the [last] examination when this lessens the period of twenty-four hours'.

Rabbah stated: What is the reason of the Rabbis?25 Because a woman well feels herself.26 Said Abaye to him: If so,27 [a period of uncleanness from] the time of her observation of the flow should suffice!28 And Rabbah?29 - He only wished to exercise Abaye's wits.30 What then is the reason of the Rabbis?31 - It is one such as that which Rab Judah gave in the name of Samuel: The Sages have ordained for the daughters of Israel that they should examine themselves in the morning and in the evening; 'in the morning', in order to verify the cleanness of objects they handled during the previous night,32 'and in the evening' in order to verify the cleanness of objects they handled during the previous day;33 but this woman,34 since she did not [regularly] examine her body,35 has36 lost one 'onah.37 But what could be meant by 'one 'onah'?38 - One additional 'onah.39 Said R. Papa to Raba: But would you not sometimes find that there are three 'onahs in twenty-four hours?40 - The Sages have laid down a uniform limit41 in order that there shall be no variations in the twenty-four hours' period. And42 if you prefer I might reply:43 [the period extends to three 'onahs] in order that the sinner44 shall not45 be at an advantage.46 What is the practical difference between them?47 - The practical difference between them is the case of a woman who was the victim of circumstances and in consequence of which she did not hold her examination.48

FOR ANY WOMAN WHO HAS A SETTLED PERIOD etc. Must it be conceded that our Mishnah represents the view of R. Dosa and not that of the Rabbis seeing that it was taught:49 R. Eliezer ruled, For four classes of women it suffices [to reckon the period of their uncleanness from the time they discovered the discharge,] viz., a virgin,50 a pregnant woman, a woman that gives suck and an old woman; and R. Dosa ruled, For any woman who has a settled period it suffices [to reckon her period of uncleanness from] the time she discovered the discharge?51 - It may even be held [that our Mishnah represents the view of] the Rabbis, for the Rabbis differ from R. Dosa only [in respect of a flow] that did not occur at the woman's set time52 but [in the case of one that did occur] at her set time they might agree with him; and our Mishnah deals with a flow that occurred at the woman's set time and it, therefore, represents the view of both.53 Thus54 it follows that R. Dosa maintains his view even where a flow did not occur at the woman's set time. Who then is the author of the following which the Rabbis taught: Though a woman has a settled period her bloodstain55 is deemed to be unclean retrospectively,56 for were she to observe a flow when it is not her set time she would be unclean retrospectively for a period of twenty-four hours?57 Must it be conceded58 to be the Rabbis only and not R. Dosa?59 - It may be said to be even R. Dosa; for R. Dosa may disagree with the Rabbis only in the case where the flow occurred at the woman's set time but where it occurred when it was not her set time he agrees with them;60 and our Mishnah deals with one that occurred at her set time and it is, therefore, in agreement with the opinion of R. Dosa

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(1) This assumption cannot, of course, be made in the case of the basket, with which R. Johanan deals, since the unclean object (the dead creeping thing) was actually found in it, and when it was found it was still in its state of uncleanness.
(2) In the case of the basket and the creeping thing.
(3) After the clean objects had been removed from it and after it had been moved into its new position.
(4) When he removed the loaf from the sloping shelf.
(5) That the man entered and moved the loaf to its present safer place.
(6) Even if it were to drop the creeping thing into the basket.
(7) That the raven dropped the thing after the clean objects had been removed etc. (cf. supra n. 11).
(8) Since (a) it is uncertain whether it touched the unclean object or not and (b) it was found within a house.
(9) The answer being in the affirmative, the difficulty arises, why is the loaf deemed to be clean?
(10) Lit., 'to be asked', whether it came in contact with the unclean object or not.
(11) Because the rule that doubtful uncleanness in a private domain is deemed to be unclean is deduced from that of sotah (v. Glos.) and consequently only rational beings like the sotah herself (who is able to answer whether she was or was not defiled) are subject to the same restrictions.
(12) In the case of the loaf.
(13) One, for instance, of those enumerated in Hag. 18b and 20b. A doubtful case of Rabbinical uncleanness is regarded as clean even in a private domain.
(14) Of the Tosef. Toh. IV cited.
(15) Rendered (supra 4a) 'an object of a minor degree of uncleanness'.
(16) Lev. XXVI, 36; the rt. of niddaf, and so also that of middaf implying something 'light', 'of minor importance', hence a 'minor degree of or Rabbinical uncleanness'.
(17) Having laid down that the period of uncleanness begins only 'FROM THE TIME OF THEIR DISCOVERING OF THE FLOW'.
(18) I.e., made no restriction whatever against the possible infringement of the actual law.
(19) Laying down that the period of uncleanness 'IS TO BE RECKONED RETROSPECTIVELY FROM THE PREVIOUS EXAMINATION'.
(20) Lit., 'who broke through beyond his measures.
(21) Lit., 'on the first of the week'.
(22) Of course it is. Why then should such an obvious ruling have to be stated?
(23) A ruling that had to be enunciated, since otherwise it could have been argued that the flow began on the Sunday immediately after the examination.
(24) As a kind of antithesis.
(25) For fixing a twenty-four hours' period of uncleanness. The reason for Hillel's period, 'from examination to examination' (cf. our Mishnah), is quite intelligible since the flow may well have begun as soon as the previous examination was concluded, but the twenty-four hours' period appears to have no logical justification whatsoever.
(26) Any flow. Had it begun immediately after the conclusion of her previous examination she would have been aware of it.
(27) That a woman is aware of the flow as soon as it begins.
(28) It being obvious that the flow began only at that moment, for if it had begun earlier she (cf. prev. n.) would have been aware of the fact. Why then should her period of uncleanness extend backwards for twenty-four hours? An objection against Rabbah.
(29) Sc., why did he take up such an untenable position?
(30) Lit., 'to sharpen (the mind) of Abaye'. Rabbah advanced the reason merely to afford an opportunity for Abaye, whose guardian and teacher he was, to prove it to be wrong.
(31) Cf. p. 20. n. 5.
(32) If a woman finds herself on examination to be clean it is thereby verified that all clean objects she handled during the previous night are to be regarded as clean; and should she discover any flow later at the evening examination the doubtful uncleanness would extend only to objects she handled during the day.
(33) Cf. prev. n. mut. mut.
(34) Spoken of in our Mishnah, and in the Baraitha cited.
(35) In defiance of the ordinance of the Rabbis.
(36) As a penalty.
(37) Lit., 'a time' or 'a period' of one day or night, sc. her uncleanness begins retrospectively one 'onah earlier.
(38) Seeing that the uncleanness extends backwards for twenty-four hours which represent two 'onahs.
(39) I.e., in addition to the 'onah immediately preceding the one in which her last examination was held (during which she is in any case unclean owing to the doubt as to when the flow began), she must suffer the penalty of being treated as unclean retrospectively even during the 'onah that preceded that one.
(40) When, for instance, the first examination after a number of days without an examination took place at midday. If the uncleanness extended backwards for a period of twenty-four hours it would cover
(41) the 'onah of the day of the examination,
(42) the 'onah of the preceding night and
(43) the 'onah of the day preceding that night. Now since the penalty imposed was only one additional 'onah why should it in this case be increased to two 'onahs? (1) Lit., 'made their measures equal', i.e., the period of twenty-four hours has been fixed, irrespective of whether it covers two 'onahs or three. (2) So Bah. Cur. edd. omit. (3) To the objection why in the case mentioned (cf. supra p. 21, n. 15) the uncleanness should extend over three 'onahs.
(44) The woman who, not only failed to examine her body regularly in accordance with the ordinance of the Sages but also delayed her last examination from the morning hour to noon.
(45) By having her period of uncleanness reduced to less than twenty-four hours.
(46) Over one in a similar position who held her examination in the early morning and whose period of uncleanness is extended retrospectively for a full period of twenty-four hours to the previous morning.
(47) The two replies offered.
(48) According to the first reply she would be subject to uncleanness for a full period of twenty-four hours, while according to the second reply, since in this case she is no sinner, the period would be reduced to two 'onahs and her uncleanness would be reckoned from the beginning of the previous evening only.
(49) What follows, with the exception of R. Dosa's ruling occurs also in the Mishnah infra 7a.
(50) I.e., one, whether married or unmarried, who suffered a flow for the first time in her life.
(51) Now, since the Rabbis elsewhere differ from R. Dosa's ruling, must it be conceded that our Mishnah represents his view only?
(52) As the appearance is obviously irregular it may well be suspected that one occurred earlier also.
(53) Lit., 'and the words of all', those of the Rabbis as well those of R. Dosa.
(54) Since the dispute between R. Dosa and the Rabbis has been limited to a flow that did not occur at the set time.
(55) Sc. one on a garment of hers.
(56) From the time it had been washed.
(57) As in this case, despite the woman's settled period, the uncleanness is deemed to be retrospective so it is retrospective in the case of the stain also.
(58) Since, from what has been said, it is only the Rabbis who impose retrospective uncleanness in the case of a woman who, though having a settled period, suffered a flow before or after that time.
(59) Is it likely, however, that R. Dosa would differ from an anonymous Baraitha?
(60) That the uncleanness is retrospective.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 5a

while the Baraitha1 is in agreement with both.2 But why should not the final assumption be3 reversed?4 - As it is possible to adopt an explanation that leads to a relaxation of the law5 and one that leads to a restriction of it6 we adopt the one that leads to the restriction.

Now it was just taught,7 'For were she to observe a flow when it is not her set time she would be unclean retrospectively for a period of twenty-four hours' - [If this8 is] the reason9 [it follows] that only in the case of a woman who has a settled period do the Rabbis draw a distinction between her stain and her observation10 [of a flow],11 but in the case of the other women12 concerning whom the Sages ruled that it sufficed for them to reckon their uncleanness from the time they discovered the flow13 [the extent of the uncleanness of] their stains is like that of their observation of a flow.14 Now whose view is this? - It is that of R. Hanina b. Antigonus; for Rab Judah citing Samuel who had it from R. Hanina b. Antigonus stated, In the case of all women their stains cause uncleanness retrospectively but in that of the women12 concerning whom the Sages ruled that it sufficed for them to reckon their uncleanness from the time they discovered the flow [the extent of the uncleanness of] their stains is like that of their observation of a flow,14 the exception being a child who has not yet attained the age of the suffering of a flow of whom, though her sheets are soiled with blood,15 no notice is to be taken.16 But does R. Hanina at all uphold17 the law of the uncleanness of a stain?18 Was it not taught: In the case of all women their stains are unclean and also in the case of the women concerning whom the Sages ruled that it sufficed for them to reckon their period of uncleanness from the time they discovered the flow their stains are unclean; while R. Hanina b. Antigonus ruled, The women concerning whom the Sages ruled that it sufficed for them to reckon their uncleanness from the time they discovered the flow are not subject to the law of uncleanness of the stain? Now does not this mean that they are not subject at all to the law of uncleanness of the stain?19 - No, it means that they are not subject to the law of the uncleanness of the stain retrospectively but they are well subject to it from now20 onwards. Does this21 then imply that the first Tanna22 is of the opinion that their uncleanness is even retrospective? - Yes; it23 being the view of R. Meir who restricts the law in respect of stains. For it was taught: In the case of all women their stains are unclean retrospectively and also in the case of the women concerning whom the Sages ruled that it sufficed for them to reckon their period of uncleanness from the time they discovered the flow their stains are unclean retrospectively; so R. Meir. R. Hanina b. Antigonus ruled, In the case of the women concerning whom the Sages ruled that it sufficed for them to reckon their period of uncleanness from the time they discovered the flow [the uncleanness of] their stains is like that of their observation [of their flow]; and a child who has attained the age of suffering a flow is subject to the law of the uncleanness of the stain while one who has not attained that age is not subject to the uncleanness of a stain, and when does she attain the age of suffering a flow? When she attains her maidenhood.24

AND IF A WOMAN USES TESTING-RAGS WHEN SHE HAS MARITAL INTERCOURSE etc. Rab Judah citing Samuel ruled: A testing-rag used before25 marital intercourse does not reduce [the doubtful period26 of retrospective uncleanness] as an examination. What is the reason? - R. Kattina replied: Because the woman is in a hurry to do her marital duty.27 But what matters it even if she is in a hurry to do her marital duty? - Since she is in a hurry to do it she does not insert the testing-rag into depressions and folds.28

We learnt: IF A WOMAN USES TESTING-RAGS WHEN SHE HAS MARITAL INTERCOURSE, THIS IS INDEED LIKE AN EXAMINATION. Does not this mean that she uses one before intercourse and one after it?29 - No, the one as well as the other is used after intercourse but30 one is for the man31 and the other is for her; as we learnt: It is the custom of the daughters of Israel when having marital intercourse to use two testing-rags, one for the man and the other for herself.32 What a comparison!33 If you concede that one is used before intercourse and the other after it one can well understand the necessity for the ruling.34 As it might have been presumed that on account of her being in a hurry to do her marital duty she does not properly perform her test we were informed that THIS IS INDEED LIKE AN EXAMINATION. If you maintain, however, that the one testing-rag as well as the other is used after marital intercourse, is not the ruling obvious?35 - It might have been presumed [that the test should be ineffective]36 on account of the possibility of the appearance of a drop of blood of the size of a mustard seed37 which semen might cover up,38 hence we were informed [that such a remote possibility need not be considered]. And if you prefer I might reply: The Rabbis required a woman to perform two tests, one before intercourse and one after it,39 and in stating 'THIS IS INDEED LIKE AN EXAMINATION' the reference is to the one after the intercourse. But was it not stated, IF A WOMAN USES etc.?40 - Read: And a woman shall use.41

LESSENS EITHER THE PERIOD OF THE PAST TWENTY-FOUR HOURS. Now that you stated that it42 lessens THE PERIOD OF THE PAST TWENTY-FOUR HOURS43

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(1) Just cited, dealing with the bloodstain.
(2) Cf. supra n. 3.
(3) Lit., 'and let him make it stand'.
(4) As has been suggested at first, that our Mishnah represents the view of the Rabbis as well as that of R. Dosa while the Baraitha represents only that of the Rabbis.
(5) As has been previously suggested: That a flow at the set time causes no retrospective uncleanness in accordance with the general opinion, while one occurring at any other time is subject to retrospective uncleanness only in accordance with the view of the Rabbis.
(6) The one finally adopted: That a flow at the set time causes retrospective uncleanness according to the Rabbis at least, while one at any other time causes retrospective uncleanness even according to R. Dosa.
(7) In the Baraitha supra 4b ad fin.
(8) 'For were she to observe etc.'.
(9) Why a stain causes retrospective uncleanness, sc. though a stain cannot be subject to greater restrictions than a discharge it causes uncleanness retrospectively, since a flow that occurred at any time other than the set time also causes retrospective uncleanness.
(10) At the set time.
(11) Sc. while in the latter case the uncleanness is not retrospective in the former, for the reason stated (cf. prev. n.) it is.
(12) The four classes, for instance, mentioned supra 4b and infra 7a.
(13) So that in their case the law of retrospective uncleanness never applies.
(14) Sc. both are not retrospective.
(15) It being unknown whether it came from her body or from elsewhere.
(16) It being assumed, though the assumption might be most unlikely, that she passed through a butcher's market and soiled her sheets there. In no case is it assumed that the blood came from her own body because the law of uncleanness, as far as stains are concerned, is merely Rabbinical, and in the case of a minor no Rabbinical measure was enacted.
(17) In the case of the four classes of women mentioned.
(18) Even after it had been discovered.
(19) How then could it be said supra that R. Hanina does uphold the law of the uncleanness of the stain?
(20) The time of discovery.
(21) The explanation according to which R. Hanina agrees with the first Tanna as regards the uncleanness of stains from the time they are discovered onwards, and that he only differs from him in rejecting their retrospective uncleanness.
(22) Whose opinion is stated in the first clause of the Baraitha cited.
(23) The first clause (cf. prev. n.).
(24) The age when she assumes the status of na'arah (v. Glos.), i.e., the age when she grows two pubic hairs or (she has no pubic hairs) when she is twelve years and one day old.
(25) I.e., only before but not after (cf. relevant note on our Mishnah).
(26) Either that of the twenty-four hours or the one between the previous and the last examination.
(27) Lit., 'she is in a state of excitement about her house'.
(28) The examination, therefore, is not a proper one.
(29) Which shows that the test before intercourse, despite R. Kattina's argument, is deemed to be a proper one.
(30) In reply to the objection, why two rags.
(31) For wiping.
(32) Infra 14a.
(33) Lit., 'that, what'.
(34) In our Mishnah, that the test is effective.
(35) And why should an obvious ruling be enunciated?
(36) Even though it took place after intercourse.
(37) That is sufficient to cause uncleanness.
(38) Thus rendering the test useless.
(39) Hence the mention of RAGS in the plural.
(40) Emphasis on IF which implies that there is no obligation. How then could it be maintained that 'the Rabbis required her etc.'?
(41) Sc. the clause is to be divided into two separate rulings, (a) that a woman shall use two testing-rags, one before intercourse and the other after it and (b) the second test is indeed like an examination.
(42) The testing-rag examination.
(43) Though it is a comparatively long period extending as it does to the previous day.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 5b

was it also necessary to state that it lessens THE PERIOD FROM THE PREVIOUS EXAMINATION TO THE LAST EXAMINATION?1 - As it might have been presumed that only in the case of the twenty-four hours' period did the Rabbis2 take into consideration the possible loss of clean things3 but not in that of the period from the previous examination to the last examination,4 we were informed [that both periods are equally reduced].

HOW [IS ONE TO UNDERSTAND THE RULING THAT] 'IT SUFFICES [TO RECKON HER PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME SHE DISCOVERS THE FLOW' etc. What need was there5 for stating, IF SHE WAS SITTING ON A BED AND WAS OCCUPIED WITH RITUALLY CLEAN OBJECTS, when it should rather have been stated,6 IF SHE WAS OCCUPIED7 WITH RITUALLY CLEAN OBJECTS AND HAVING LEFT THEM, OBSERVED A FLOW? - It is this that we were informed:8 The reason [why the bed is regarded as clean is] because [in the case of that woman]9 it suffices [for her to reckon] her [period of uncleanness from the] time [of her discovery of the flow] but10 [where the uncleanness extends backwards over] twenty-four hours the bed also is regarded as unclean.11 This provides support for Ze'iri, for Ze'iri ruled: [A woman12 during] the twenty-four hours preceding her discovery of a menstrual flow causes bed and seat13 to convey uncleanness to a man who in turn conveys it to his clothes.14 But consider: This bed is a thing that has no sense to answer questions,15 and is not doubtful uncleanness16 in the case of an object that has no sense to answer questions regarded as clean?17 Ze'iri explained: [This18 refers to a case] where her friends were carrying her in the bed so that the latter may be regarded as the hand of her friends.19 Now, however, that R. Johanan ruled that in the case of doubtful uncleanness conveyed through a human agency20 the object in doubt,21 though lying on the ground, is deemed to be capable of answering questions as if it had been a human being who has the sense to answer questions22 [this23 holds good] even though her friends were not carrying her in the bed.

[Reverting to] the [above] text, 'R. Johanan ruled: In the case of doubtful uncleanness conveyed through a human agency the object in doubt, though lying on the ground, is deemed to be capable of answering questions as if it had been a human being who has the sense to answer questions'.24 An objection was raised: If a man was wrapping himself in his cloak while clean or unclean objects were at his side25 or above his head and it is doubtful whether there was contact26 or not, they27 are deemed to be clean,28 but if it was impossible [for the cloak and the other objects] not to have come in contact they29 are regarded as unclean. R. Simeon b. Gamaliel ruled: The man is told, 'Do it again'30 and he does it again.31 They,32 however, said to him: No repetition [test33 is recognized] in questions of cleanness.34 Now why [should they35 be clean]36 seeing that this is a case of uncleanness that is conveyed through a human agency?37 - This is beside the point,38 for R. Hoshaia learnt: In a private domain [such a case of] doubtful uncleanness39 is regarded as unclean, and in a public domain it is regarded as clean.40

[Reverting to] the [above] text, 'Ze'iri ruled: [A woman during] the twenty-four hours preceding her discovery of a menstrual flow causes bed and seat to convey uncleanness to a man who in turn conveys it to his clothes'.41 But, surely, this cannot be correct.42 For did not Abimi from Be Hozai43 when he came bring with him44 a Baraitha which stated, 'During the twenty-four hours preceding the discovery of her menstrual flow a woman's bed and seat are [as unclean] as the object she touches', which means, does it not, that as an object she touches does not convey uncleanness to a human being45 so also does not her bed convey uncleanness to a human being?46 - Raba retorted: And do you understand this ruling47 seeing that it [may be refuted by an inference] a minori ad majus: If an earthen vessel that was covered with a tight fitting lid, which is protected from uncleanness in a corpse's tent,48 is yet not so protected [from the uncleanness] of the twenty-four hours preceding the discovery of a menstrual flow,49 is it not logical that the beds and seats [of a menstruant], which are not protected from uncleanness in a corpse's tent, should not be protected from the uncleanness of the twenty-four hours preceding the discovery of a menstrual flow?50 - But did not Abimi of Be Hozai quote a Baraitha?51 - Read:52 A woman's bed and seat53

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(1) Which is a much shorter one (cf. prev. n.) being confined to the limits of the same day.
(2) By enacting that the test is effective and reduces it.
(3) Which the woman may have handled during this comparatively long time.
(4) A shorter period (cf. supra n. 10) during which not many things could have been handled and a much lesser loss is consequently involved.
(5) Lit., 'wherefore to me'.
(6) Lit., 'let him teach'.
(7) Omitting the apparently superfluous 'WAS SITTING ON A BED'.
(8) By the additional words (cf. prev. n.).
(9) Who has a settled period.
(10) In the case of a woman whose periods were not regular.
(11) As the bed of a confirmed menstruant (cf. Lev. XV, 21) which conveys uncleanness to the man that touches it as well as to the clothes he wears though the latter did not come in direct contact with it.
(12) Cf. prev. n. but one.
(13) On which she lay or sat.
(14) Cf. supra n. 6.
(15) Lit., 'to be asked'.
(16) Such as that caused by the woman in question during the twenty-four hours preceding the time she observed the flow.
(17) Of course it is, since the law of treating doubtful uncleanness as unclean is deduced from that of the sotah (v. Glos.) who is able to answer questions.
(18) The ruling in our Mishnah, which does regard (by implication) the bed on which the woman sat as unclean.
(19) The hand, being part of a human being who is well able to answer questions, is justly compared to the sotah whose doubtful uncleanness is regarded as unclean. It is for a similar reason (that things handled by a human being are regarded as his hand), it may be added, that the things the woman handled when sitting on the bed are regarded as unclean even where the bed was resting on the ground, and this explains why the objection supra was raised in connection with the bed and not in connection with the things the woman has handled.
(20) As in that of the bed and the menstruant during the twenty-four hours preceding the observation of the flow or in that of a dead creeping thing that was carried by a man and a doubt arose as to whether it came in contact with a certain clean object.
(21) Since the uncleanness, if any, was brought to it by a human agency.
(22) And in a private domain is regarded as unclean. Only when the inanimate object in doubt was near an unclean one that was also inanimate, and 'no human agency was involved, is it regarded as clean.
(23) V. p. 28, n. 14.
(24) Supra q.v. notes.
(25) He being either unclean (in the former case) or clean (in the latter one).
(26) Between the cloak and the objects in its vicinity. If there was contact, the cloak that (in the former case) contracted uncleanness from its wearer would convey uncleanness to the clean objects, or the unclean objects (in the latter case) would convey uncleanness to the cloak.
(27) The objects in the vicinity (in the former case) and the cloak (in the latter case).
(28) Even, it is now assumed, in a private domain, because the cloak as well as the objects in its vicinity are incapable of answering questions.
(29) The objects in the vicinity (in the former case) and the cloak (in the latter case).
(30) Sc. to wrap himself again in his cloak in the same place and position in which he did it first.
(31) In this manner it is ascertained whether the cloak and the other objects have or have not come in contact.
(32) The Rabbis who disagreed with him.
(33) Since it may not exactly reproduce the former conditions.
(34) Tosef. Toh. IV which, however, has the following variation: 'R. Dosa ruled, He is told, "Do it again" ... They, however, said to him, No repetition . . . R. Simeon b. Gamaliel ruled, He sometimes does it again'.
(35) V. p. 29, n. 10.
(36) According to the first Tanna.
(37) Which according to R. Johanan is unclean.
(38) Lit., 'outside of that'.
(39) One involving conveyance through a human agency.
(40) No objection, therefore, may be raised from the Tosef. cited which may be explained to refer to a case in a public domain.
(41) Supra q.v. notes.
(42) Lit., 'I am not'.
(43) The Khuzistan.
(44) Lit., 'came and brought'.
(45) Only a primary uncleanness can do that. An object touched by a menstruant assumes only the status of a first grade of uncleanness which conveys uncleanness to objects but not to a human being.
(46) The answer apparently being in the affirmative, the difficulty arises: How could Ze'iri maintain that the woman causes bed and seat to convey uncleanness to a man who in turn etc.'?
(47) Which seems to reduce the uncleanness of the bed and seat of the menstruant in question to a lower degree than that of earthenware.
(48) Only when uncovered does it contract uncleanness (cf. Num. XIX, 15).
(49) If it was touched by the woman during the twenty-four hours (cf. infra 6a)
(50) As the soundness of this argument cannot be questioned Abimi's ruling is obviously untenable and may well be disregarded.
(51) Which is an authoritative utterance.
(52) The ruling in the Baraitha.
(53) During the twenty-four hours preceding her discovery of a menstrual flow.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 6a

are [as unclean] as that which touches the body of the menstruant herself; just as the touching of her body causes the uncleanness of a human being who in turn causes the uncleanness of the clothes he wears1 so does the touching of her bed or seat cause the uncleanness of a human being who in turn causes the uncleanness of the clothes he wears.

It was taught in agreement with Raba: A woman who observed a bloodstain2 conveys uncleanness retrospectively.3 And what are the things to which she conveys the uncleanness?4 Foodstuffs and drinks,5 beds and seats,6 as well as any earthen vessel, even though it was covered with a tightly fitting lid,7 and her counting8 is9 disturbed,10 and she conveys11 uncleanness to the man who cohabited with her retrospectively. R. Akiba12 ruled: She conveys uncleanness to the man who cohabited with her but begins her counting13 from the time only of her observing a flow. If she observed a flow of blood,14 she conveys uncleanness retrospectively for twenty-four hours.15 And what are the things to which she conveys uncleanness?16 Foodstuffs and drinks,17 beds and seats18 as well as any earthen vessel, though it was covered with a tightly fitting lid,19 her counting20 is not21 disturbed and she does not convey22 uncleanness to the man who cohabited with her.23 In either case, however,24 the uncleanness25 is held in suspense [and any consecrated foodstuffs touched] must neither be eaten nor burned.26 As to Raba, however,27 if he heard of the Baraitha,28 why did he not say [that his ruling is derived from] a Baraitha? And if he did not hear of the Baraitha, whence did he [derive the law for his inference] a minori ad majus? - The fact is that he heard of the Baraitha, but29 were he to derive his ruling from the Baraitha it could have been objected [that the uncleanness30 is conveyed] either to the man or to his clothes31 but not to the man as well as to the clothes he wears,32 hence he had recourse to his inference a minori ad majus.33

R. Huna ruled: [The retrospective uncleanness during] the twenty-four hours [preceding the observation] of a menstrual flow is conveyed only to hallowed things but not to terumah. But if so, should not this law have been mentioned together with those of the other grades [of sanctity]?34 - Only cases that involve definite uncleanness are enumerated but any in which no definite uncleanness is involved35 is not mentioned.

An objection was raised: What are the things to which she conveys uncleanness? Foodstuffs and drinks.36 Does not this37 mean those that are hallowed as well as those that are terumah? - No, only those that are hallowed.38

Come and hear: R. Judah ruled [that priestly women must examine their bodies] even after they have concluded a meal39 of terumah;40 and the point raised, 'Is not the consumed meal a matter of the past?'41 [And to this] R. Hisda replied: This42 was necessary only for the sake of ensuring the fitness of the remnants before her?43 - R. Huna reads:44 'To burn the remnants that were in her hands',45 the examination being held immediately after46 [the meal].47

Come and hear: It once happened that Rabbi acted48 in accordance with the ruling of R. Eliezer,49 and after he reminded himself50 he observed, 'R. Eliezer deserves to be relied upon

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(1) Torath kohanim on Lev. XV, 19.
(2) So Bah and MS.M. Cur. edd. 'blood'.
(3) Cf. prev. n. (Cur. edd. read 'twenty-four hours'), from the time the garment was last washed, it being unknown how soon after this the stain was made.
(4) During the period mentioned (cf. prev. n.).
(5) Which she touched (cf. foll. n.).
(6) On which she lay or sat. (Cur. edd. reverse the order.)
(7) Provided the woman shook the vessel and did not merely touch it.
(8) Of the 'eleven days' following the seven days of a menstrual period.
(9) Cur. edd. 'is not'.
(10) So MS.M and Rashi; because it is unknown when the flow actually appeared and the limits of the menstruation period cannot consequently be determined.
(11) Cur. edd. 'does not convey'.
(12) MS.M inserts R. Akiba's ruling infra before 'In either case, however'.
(13) Of the seven days of menstruation.
(14) So Bah and MS.M. Cur. edd., 'stain'.
(15) Bah and MS.M. Cur. edd. omit 'for twenty-four hours'.
(16) During the period mentioned.
(17) Which she touched.
(18) On which she lay and sat.
(19) Provided the woman shook the vessel and did not merely touch it.
(20) Of the 'eleven days' following the seven days of a menstrual period.
(21) Cf. Rashi and MS.M. Cur. edd. omit 'not'.
(22) So MS.M. Cur. edd., 'she conveys'.
(23) Cur. edd. add, 'but begins her counting from the time only of her observing of the flow'.
(24) Whether there was only a stain or a flow.
(25) During the period mentioned.
(26) Thus it has been shown that, in agreement with Raba, the Baraitha tacitly assumes that the beds and seats under discussion convey uncleanness not only to the man who came in contact with them but also to the clothes he wears (cf. Tosaf. Asheri a.l.).
(27) Who (supra 5b ad fin.) took the law of the uncleanness of an earthen vessel for granted and deduced from it that of the bed.
(28) That was just cited, in which the law of the earthen vessel is explicitly enunciated.
(29) As to the reason why he did not quote it.
(30) Of the bed or seat.
(31) Whichever of them came in contact with the unclean object.
(32) Which did not come in direct contact with the seat or the bed.
(33) From an earthenware vessel.
(34) In Hag. 20b where are enumerated the restrictions that are applicable to hallowed things and not to terumah and vice versa.
(35) Such as that of the twenty-four hours' period under discussion where the uncleanness is merely a preventive measure.
(36) Supra, in the Baraitha last cited.
(37) 'Foodstuffs and drinks'.
(38) The oil of a meal-offering, for instance, or the wine of libation.
(39) Lit., 'at the time of their passing away from eating'.
(40) Infra 11a.
(41) Lit., 'what has been, has been', sc. what is the use of an examination after the meal has been consumed when nothing can be done even if the woman were to be found unclean.
(42) The examination.
(43) Should a woman, for instance, discover a flow later in the day the examination after her morning meal would ensure the cleanness of the terumah that remained from that meal. Thus it follows that in the absence of an examination the terumah would be deemed to be unclean retrospectively. How, then, could R. Huna maintain that the uncleanness is conveyed to hallowed things only?
(44) In place of R. Hisda's version of R. Judah's meaning.
(45) Sc., if she finds herself on examination to be unclean the remnants of her meal, since she touched them, are deemed to be unclean and, as unclean terumah must be burned.
(46) Heb. Keshi'ur weseth (v. Rashi). Evthion (Tosaf. Asheri) **, 'forthwith' (cf. Jast.).
(47) So that it may be taken for granted that the terumah she had just handled had come in contact with a confirmed menstruant. Where, however, the woman held no examination immediately after her meal, a subsequent discovery of a place causes no retrospective uncleanness to the terumah she handled.
(48) In the case of a young woman who did not suffer a flow during three consecutive periods (of thirty days each).
(49) That the period of uncleanness is to be reckoned from the discovery of the flow and not retrospectively. The Rabbis who differ from R. Eliezer hold this ruling to apply to an old woman only (whose senility might be assumed to be the cause of the irregularity) but not to a young one (cf. prev. n.).
(50) This is discussed presently.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 6b

in an emergency'.1 And the point was raised, What could be the meaning of 'after he reminded himself'? If it be explained, 'After he remembered that the halachah was not in agreement with R. Eliezer but in agreement with the Rabbis', [the difficulty would arise:] How could he act according to the former's ruling2 even in an emergency? Hence,3 [it means after he recalled] that it was not stated whether the law was in agreement with the one Master or with the other Master, and having recalled that it was not an individual that differed from him4 but that many differ from him he observed, 'R. Eliezer deserves to be relied upon in an emergency'.1 Now if it is granted [that retrospective uncleanness applies also] to terumah5 one can well understand the incident6 since terumah was in existence in the days of Rabbi, but if it is maintained [that retrospective uncleanness is applicable only] to hallowed things7 [the objection would arise:] Were there hallowed things in the days of Rabbi?8 - [This may be explained] on the lines of a statement of 'Ullah. As 'Ulla stated, 'The Associates'9 in Galilee10 keep their things11 in levitical cleanness';12 so they may have done it in the days of Rabbi.

Come and hear: It once happened that R. Gamaliel's13 maid was baking bread loaves of terumah and after each14 she rinsed her hands with water and held an examination. After the last one when she held the examination she found herself to be unclean and she came and asked R. Gamaliel who told her that they were all unclean.15 'Master', she said to him, 'did I not hold an examination after each one'?14 'If so', he told her, 'the last16 is unclean17 while all the others are clean'. At all events was it not here stated, 'bread loaves of terumah'?18 - By terumah was meant19 the bread loaves20 of a thanksgiving-offering.21 But how does it come about that the loaves of a thanksgiving-offering22 should require to be baked?23 This is a case where they24 were set aside25 while they were being kneaded,26 this being in line with what R. Tobi b. Kattina27 ruled: 'If a man baked the loaves of a thanksgiving-offering in four loaves28 he has performed his duty'. [For when] the objection was raised, 'Do we not require forty loaves',29 [the reply was that] this30 is just a religious requirement.31 But, surely, [it was asked,] is it not necessary to separate terumah25 from each?32 And should you reply that one might break off a piece from each33 [it could be retorted that:] The All Merciful said, one34 which implies that one must not break off a piece.25 [To this] it was replied that 'they were set aside while they were being kneaded';35 so here also36 it may be explained that they were separated while they were being kneaded.37

Come and hear: Another incident took place when R. Gamaliel's maid was sealing wine jars with clay that after each she rinsed her hands with water and held an examination. After the last one when she held the examination and found herself to be unclean she came and asked R. Gamaliel who told her that they were all unclean. 'But, surely', she said to him, 'I held an examination after each one'. 'If so', he told her, 'the last38 is unclean while all the others are clean'. Now if it is conceded that one incident39 concerned hallowed things and the other terumah, it can be well understood why she asked a second time, but if it is contended that the former as well as the latter concerned hallowed things, why should she have asked him a second time? - [Each] incident occurred with a different maid.40

Another version: R. Huna ruled, [The retrospective uncleanness during] the twenty-four hours [preceding the observation] of a menstrual flow is conveyed both to hallowed things and to terumah. Whence is this41 inferred? From its omission in the enumeration of42 the various grades [of sanctity].43 Said R. Nahman to him: Surely, a Tanna44 recited [that the retrospective uncleanness]45 applies only to hallowed things and not to terumah. R. Samuel son of R. Isaac accepted this [teaching]46 from him [and explained it] as applying to common food that was prepared under conditions of hallowed things and not to common food that was prepared in conditions of terumah.47 We learnt elsewhere: If a question of doubtful uncleanness has arisen about a dough48 before it was rolled49 it may be prepared in uncleanness,50 [but if the doubt has arisen] after it had been rolled51 it must be prepared in cleanness.52 'Before it was rolled it may be prepared in uncleanness', because it is common food and it is permitted to cause uncleanness to common food in Erez Israel. 'After it had been rolled it must be prepared in cleanness', because common food that is in a condition of tebel53 in respect of the dough-offering is regarded as dough-offering, and it is forbidden to cause uncleanness to the dough-offering. A Tanna taught:

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(1) Infra 9b. Lit., 'in the time of pressure'. For the nature of the emergency cf. Tosaf. contra Rashi.
(2) Which is contrary to the halachah.
(3) Cur. edd. in parenthesis insert 'not'.
(4) R. Eliezer.
(5) Contrary to the view of R. Huna (supra 6a).
(6) That occurred in Rabbi's time.
(7) As R. Huna laid down (cf. prev. n. but one).
(8) Surely not, since the Temple was no longer in existence at that time!
(9) Habraiya pl. of haber (v. Glos.).
(10) In their hope and expectation that the Temple might at any moment be rebuilt.
(11) Wine, for instance, which was used in the Temple for libation or oil that was used for the meal-offerings.
(12) Sc. bestow upon them the same care as if they were hallowed things. V. Hag., Sonc. ed., p. 157 notes.
(13) R. Gamaliel the Elder (Rashb.), prob. R. Gamaliel of Jamnia (Tosaf.).
(14) Lit., 'between each one and one'.
(15) On account of the twenty-four hours of her retrospective uncleanness.
(16) Lit., 'it'.
(17) Owing to retrospective uncleanness from the previous examination to the last examination.
(18) And yet the law of retrospective uncleanness was applied (cf. prev. n.). How then could R. Huna maintain (supra 6a) that it applies only to hallowed things?
(19) Lit., 'what terumah?'
(20) Sc. the four loaves (one from each of the four kinds) which are given to the priest and are subject to the restrictions of hallowed things though they are called terumah (cf. Lev. VII, 14).
(21) Cf. Lev. VII, 11ff.
(22) I.e., the four that (cf. prev. n. but one) are given to the priest, which are to be taken from the forty (cf. Men. 76a) baked loaves of the offering.
(23) After they have been hallowed by having been given to the priest.
(24) The four loaves.
(25) For the priest.
(26) Hence the baking after they have been hallowed (cf. supra n. 10).
(27) Var. lec. 'b. R. Kisna'.
(28) I.e., of the dough of each of the four kinds he made only one loaf instead of the prescribed ten (cf. Men. 76a).
(29) How then can four suffice?
(30) The number of forty.
(31) But no sine qua non.
(32) Of the four kinds, one from each.
(33) Of the four big loaves.
(34) Lev. VII, 14, 'and . . . shall offer one', 'one' implying a whole one. (Men. 77b.)
(35) One loaf from each kind was set aside for the priest while nine of each were left for the owner, and subsequently each of the four small and the four large (representing nine small) loaves were duly baked.
(36) In the case of R. Gamaliel's maid.
(37) The maid having been engaged in the baking of the priest's share.
(38) Lit., 'it'.
(39) Of the two in which the maid figured.
(40) Lit., 'it was with two maids'.
(41) That the uncleanness mentioned is equally applicable to terumah and hallowed things.
(42) Lit., 'since he does not teach it at'.
(43) Hag. 20b where the restrictions that apply to hallowed things and not to terumah and vice versa are enumerated.
(44) V. Glos. s.v. (b).
(45) During the twenty-four hours preceding the observation of a flow.
(46) Reported by R. Nahman in the name of a Tanna.
(47) It does not, however, apply to
(48) Lit., 'was produced about it'.
(49) So that it was not yet subject to the dough-offering. Only after it had been rolled is a dough regarded as ready and, therefore, subject to the dough-offering.
(50) Because owing to its doubtful state of uncleanness it may not be eaten in any case.
(51) When it is already subject to the obligation of the offering (cf. prev. n. but one) and when consequently part of it is virtually hallowed.
(52) Hal. III, 2; since it is forbidden to cause uncleanness to a hallowed thing (cf. Bek. 34a) though the dough in question could not in any case be eaten on account of its doubtful condition of uncleanness.
(53) V. Glos.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 7a

Its dough-offering1 is in a suspended condition2 and it may neither be eaten nor burned. In respect of what doubt did they3 give this ruling?4 In respect of a doubt applicable to the dough-offering.5 What is meant by 'a doubt applicable to the dough-offering'? - Both Abaye and Raba explained: That one should not assume that the ruling6 applies only to7 a case of likely uncleanness8 such as that of the two paths,9 for in that case even mere common food contracts uncleanness;10 but that it applies also in the case

actual terumah which is subject to the same restrictions as hallowed things where only 'leaning' might be assumed;11 for we learnt: If a zab12 and a clean person were unloading an ass or loading it,if the load was heavy13 [the latter] is unclean; if it was light14 he is clean and in either case15 he is regarded as clean16 [even if he is] of the members of the Synagogue17 but as unclean18 in respect of terumah,19 and 'unconsecrated food that is in a condition of tebel in respect of the dough-offering' is regarded as dough-offering.20 But have we not learnt:21 A woman who is a tebulath yom22 may23 knead her dough and cut off from it its dough-offering24 and put it on an inverted basket of palm-twigs or on a board,25 and then26 bring it close [to the major portion of the dough] and designate it [as dough-offering;27 this procedure being permitted] because the uncleanness of the dough28 is only of the third grade,29 and the third grade is regarded as clean in common food.30 Now if you were to maintain that 'common food that is in a condition of tebel in respect of the dough-offering is regarded as dough-offering' [the objection would arise:] Did she not in fact convey uncleanness to it?31 - Said Abaye: In regard to any object,32 that conveys certain uncleanness to common food, uncleanness has been imposed as a preventive measure, even in a doubtful case, where common food that is in a condition of tebel in respect of the dough-offering is concerned,33 but in regard to the woman who is a tebulath yom, since she does not convey certain uncleanness to common food,34 no uncleanness has been imposed as a preventive measure in a doubtful case where common food that is in a condition of tebel in respect of the dough-offering is concerned.33 But is there not the case of the retrospective uncleanness of the twenty-four hours [preceding the observation] of a menstrual flow which35 conveys certain uncleanness to common food and in connection with which, nevertheless, no uncleanness has been imposed as a preventive measure in a case of doubt36 where common food that is in a condition of tebel in respect of the dough-offering is concerned;33 for has not the Master said, 'R. Samuel son of R. Isaac accepted from him this [teaching, and explained it] as applying to common food that was prepared under conditions of hallowed things and not to common food that was prepared in conditions of terumah'?37 - In the former case38 no terumah is kneaded up with the common food39 but in the latter case terumah40 is kneaded up with the dough.41 And if you prefer I might reply: Leave out of the question the retrospective uncleanness of the twenty-four hours, since it is merely a Rabbinical measure.

MISHNAH. R. ELIEZER RULED: IN THE CASE OF FOUR CLASSES OF WOMEN IT SUFFICES [FOR THEM TO RECKON] THEIR [PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME [OF THEIR DISCOVERING OF THE FLOW]: A VIRGIN,42 A WOMAN IN PREGNANCY,42 A NURSING WOMAN,42 AND AN OLD WOMAN.42 R. JOSHUA SAID: I HAVE ONLY HEARD [THE RULING43 APPLIED TO] A VIRGIN.44

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(1) Though it was prepared in cleanness.
(2) On account of the doubt that had arisen earlier before the offering had been set aside.
(3) The Rabbis.
(4) That the dough-offering is in a suspended state of uncleanness.
(5) And not to common food, hullin (v. Glos.). This is explained presently.
(6) Concerning the uncleanness of the dough.
(7) Lit., 'we learnt'.
(8) Lit., 'evidences'.
(9) One of which was clean and the other unclean, and a person walked through one of them and it is unknown which one it was (Rashi). For a different interpretation cf. Tosaf.
(10) And is applicable to common food which is prepared under conditions of levitical purity. Much more then would this uncleanness apply to the common food from which dough-offering must be, set aside, and the ruling would he superfluous.
(11) Sc. (cf. next n. but one) where the likelihood of uncleanness is rather remote and not applicable to common food prepared under conditions of levitical purity.
(12) V. Glos.
(13) Since it is possible that on account of its heavy weight one of the men leaned on the other and was thus shaken by him, 'shaking' (hesset) being a means of conveying the uncleanness of a zab (cf. Rashi and Tosaf. Asheri).
(14) Cf. prev. n. mut. mut.
(15) Lit., 'and all of them', i.e., even in the case of a heavy load (Rashi); a light load (Tosaf.).
(16) Since (a) there might have been no shaking at all and (b) if there was it could not obviously have been a proper shaking.
(17) Who observe levitical cleanness in common food also.
(18) Rabbinically.
(19) Zabin III, 2. Similarly in the case of the dough-offering under discussion the expression 'a doubt applicable to the dough-offering' means a doubtful uncleanness that does not apply to members of the Synagogue in respect of common food but applies to common food from which the dough-offering has to be taken.
(20) Which is in the same category as terumah and consequently subject to uncleanness arising from doubtful leaning.
(21) So MS.M and marg. n. Cur. edd., 'it was taught'.
(22) Fem. of tebul yom (v. Glos.).
(23) Though she, as cleanness could not be completely attained before sunset, is still subject to an uncleanness of the second grade.
(24) Without designating it as such, so that it still retains its status of common food.
(25) Sc. on an object that is not susceptible to ritual uncleanness. Neither the board, nor the basket in its inverted position, has a receptacle, and it is only 'vessels' with proper receptacles that are susceptible to uncleanness.
(26) Since the dough-offering when being set aside must be close to the dough for which it is offered.
(27) By that time the uncleanness of the woman can no longer be imparted to it since the object on which it rests (cf. prev. n. but one) intervenes.
(28) Lit., 'it'; that had been touched by the woman who (v. supra) is of the second grade of uncleanness.
(29) A clean object touched by an unclean one being always (with some exceptions) subject to a grade of uncleanness that is by one grade lower than the latter.
(30) T.Y. IV, 2; such as the dough is presumably before the dough-offering had been taken from it.
(31) When she first touched it. What then was the use of the entire procedure and precaution after that?
(32) Such, e.g., as the load carried by a zab.
(33) Lit., 'on account of'.
(34) A third grade of uncleanness, as stated supra, being regarded as clean.
(35) During the actual period of the flow.
(36) I.e., during the twenty-four hours preceding the observation of the flow when the uncleanness is only doubtful.
(37) Supra 6b ad fin. 'Common food that was prepared in conditions of terumah' being presumably in an analogous position to 'common food that is in a condition of tebel in respect of the dough-offering' both should be subject to the same restrictions. Why then was the former exempted from the restriction while the latter was subjected to it?
(38) Cf. prev. n. Lit., 'there'.
(39) Lit., 'in them'.
(40) Sc. the dough-offering.
(41) The latter must consequently be subject to greater restrictions.
(42) This is explained presently.
(43) Of R. Eliezer that IT SUFFICES etc.
(44) But not to the other three classes.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 7b

THE HALACHAH, HOWEVER, IS IN AGREEMENT WITH R. ELIEZER.

WHO IS REGARDED AS 'VIRGIN'? ANY WOMAN, EVEN THOUGH SHE IS MARRIED, WHO HAS NEVER YET OBSERVED A FLOW. 'A WOMAN IN PREGNANCY'? ONE WHOSE EMBRYO CAN BE DISCERNED. 'A NURSING WOMAN'? A WOMAN BEFORE SHE HAS WEANED HER CHILD. IF SHE GAVE HER CHILD TO A NURSING WOMAN, IF SHE WEANED IT, OR IF IT DIED, R. MEIR RULED: SHE CONVEYS UNCLEANNESS RETROSPECTIVELY FOR TWENTY-FOUR HOURS;1 BUT THE SAGES RULED: IT SUFFICES FOR HER2 [TO RECKON HER PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME OF HER [OBSERVATION OF THE FLOW]. WHO IS REGARDED AS 'AN OLD WOMAN'? ANY WOMAN OVER WHOM THREE 'ONAHS3 HAVE PASSED4 NEAR THE TIME OF HER OLD AGE.5 R. ELIEZER6 RULED: FOR ANY WOMAN7 OVER WHOM HAVE PASSED4 THREE 'ONAHS IT SUFFICES [TO RECKON HER PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME OF HER [OBSERVING OF A FLOW]. R. JOSE RULED: FOR A WOMAN IN PREGNANCY AND A NURSING WOMAN OVER WHOM THREE 'ONAHS HAVE PASSED8 IT SUFFICES [TO RECKON THEIR PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME OF THEIR [OBSERVATION OF THE FLOW].9

AND OF WHAT DID THEY10 SPEAK11 WHEN THEY LAID DOWN12 THAT 'IT SUFFICES [FOR THEM TO RECKON] THEIR PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM THE TIME [OF THEIR DISCOVERING OF THE FLOW]'? OF A FIRST OBSERVATION,13 BUT AT A SUBSEQUENT OBSERVATION14 SHE CONVEYS UNCLEANNESS RETROSPECTIVELY FOR A PERIOD OF TWENTY-FOUR HOURS. IF, HOWEVER, SHE SUFFERED THE FIRST FLOW ON ACCOUNT OF AN ACCIDENT15 IT SUFFICES FOR HER EVEN AT A SUBSEQUENT OBSERVATION [TO RECKON HER UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME OF HER [OBSERVING OF THE FLOW].

GEMARA. It was taught: R. Eliezer said to R. Joshua, 'You have not heard16 but17 I have heard; you have only heard one tradition but I have heard many;18 people do not ask him who has not seen the new moon to come and tender evidence19 but only him who has seen it.' Throughout the lifetime of20 R. Eliezer the people acted in accordance with the ruling of R. Joshua, but after the passing away of R. Eliezer, R. Joshua re-introduced the earlier practice.21 Why did he22 not follow R. Eliezer during his lifetime? - Because R. Eliezer was a disciple of Shammai23 and he24 felt that if they25 would act in agreement with his ruling in one matter26 they25 would act in agreement with his rulings in other matters also27 and that out of respect for R. Eliezer no one could interfere28 with them; but after the passing away of R. Eliezer, when the people29 could well be interfered with, he24 re-introduced the original practice.

Rab Judah citing Samuel ruled: The halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer in four cases. One is that which has just been mentioned.30 The other is that about a woman who was in a hard travail31 [concerning whom it was stated:] For how long must she be relieved from pain32 so as to be regarded a zabah?33 Twenty-four hours;34 so R. Eliezer.35 And the halachah is in agreement with his view.36 And the third37 is the following: If a zab and a zabah38 examined themselves on the first day39 and found themselves clean and on the seventh day also40 and found themselves clean, but did not examine themselves during the other days,41 R. Eliezer ruled: Behold these42 are in a presumptive condition of cleanness,43 and R. Joshua ruled: They are entitled [to reckon as clean] only the first day and the seventh day,44 while R. Akiba ruled: They are entitled [to reckon as clean] the seventh day alone,45 and it was taught: R. Simeon and R. Jose stated, 'The view of R. Eliezer46 is more feasible than that of R. Joshua,47 while that of R. Akiba is more feasible than those of both,48 but the halachah agrees with that of R. Eliezer'.49 And the fourth is the following.50 For we have learnt: If the outer sides51 of vessels were rendered unclean52 by liquids,53 R. Eliezer ruled, they convey uncleanness52 to other liquids54 but they55 do not render foodstuffs unfit.56 'They convey uncleanness to liquids' even where the latter are common, but they 'do not render foodstuffs unfit', even where the latter are terumah. R. Joshua ruled: They convey uncleanness to liquids and also render foodstuffs unfit.57 Said R. Joshua: This may be inferred a minori ad majus: If a tebul yom who58 does not convey uncleanness to a common liquid,59 nevertheless renders foodstuffs of terumah unfit how much more then should the outsides of vessels which do convey uncleanness to an unconsecrated liquid render foodstuffs of terumah unfit. And R. Eliezer?60 - The uncleanness of the outsides of vessels61 is only Rabbinical62 while that of a tebul yom63 is pentateuchal;64 and, where it is a question of deducing a Rabbinical from a Pentateuchal law, no inference a minori ad majus can be applied.65 For in accordance with Pentateuchal law no foodstuff conveys uncleanness to a vessel and no liquid conveys uncleanness to a vessel, and it is only the Rabbis that have ordained such uncleanness as a preventive measure against possible laxity in the case of the fluid66 of a zab or a zabah;67 hence it is only in the case of liquids, which are prone to contract uncleanness, that the Rabbis have enacted a preventive measure, but in that of foodstuffs, since they are not prone to contract uncleanness, the Rabbis enacted no preventive measure. What, however, is the reason for the mention of the outsides of vessels?68 - Because their restrictions are lighter.69 For we have learnt: If the outside of a vessel came in contact with unclean liquids,70 its outside becomes unclean while its inside, its hanger,71 its rim and its handles remain clean, but if its inside has become unclean all of it is unclean.72

But what does Samuel teach us,73 seeing that in all these cases we learnt that the law [was in agreement with R. Eliezer]? And should you reply that he mainly informed us about the 'outsides of vessels' concerning which we did not learn [elsewhere what the law was], why [it could be retorted] did he not simply state, 'The halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer in the case of the outsides of vessels'? - The fact is that it is this that he informed us:74 That the halachah may not be derived from a theoretical statement.75

But are there no more [than the four rulings]?76 Is there not in fact another, since we have learnt: R. Eliezer ruled,

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(1) Preceding the time of her observation of the flow.
(2) During the twenty-four months after the child's birth throughout which she is expected to suckle it (v. Gemara infra).
(3) 'Periods'. This is explained in the Gemara infra.
(4) Without her observing of a flow.
(5) This is explained in the Gemara infra.
(6) Var. lec., 'Eleazar'.
(7) Even a young one.
(8) Without her observing of a flow.
(9) If three consecutive 'onahs, however, have not passed, there applies the law of retrospective uncleanness, contrary to the view of R. Eliezer and the first Tanna supra.
(10) The Rabbis, supra.
(11) So Bah. Cur. edd. 'he spoke'.
(12) Supra in the case of the CLASSES OF WOMEN. This is discussed in the Gemara infra.
(13) After the three 'onahs have passed over the virgin, the woman in pregnancy or the old woman.
(14) Lit., 'at the second', since her natural proneness to the flow is re-established.
(15) So that it cannot be ascribed to the woman's natural disposition (cf. prev. n.).
(16) Cf. R. Joshua's statement in our Mishnah.
(17) Cf. Bah. Cur. edd. omit the waw.
(18) Reading harbeh. Var. lec. arba' ('four') sc. women, cf. Bah.
(19) That he has seen it. Such evidence was essential to enable the Great Beth-din in Jerusalem (who regulated the lengths of the months and the fixation of the festival dates) to proclaim the beginning of a new month.
(20) Lit., 'all his days'.
(21) Lit., 'restored the thing to its old (state)', when the practice was in agreement with the view of R. Eliezer.
(22) R. Joshua.
(23) So R. Tam and Rashb. (contra Rashi who, referring to B.M. 59b, renders shamuthi 'one placed under the ban'). Wherever Beth Hillel differed from Beth Shammai the law (with a very few exceptions) is always in agreement with the former.
(24) R. Joshua.
(25) Lit., 'we'.
(26) I.e., the one mentioned in our Mishnah where the law in fact is in agreement with his view.
(27) Sc. even in those where the law is in agreement with Beth Hillel.
(28) Lit., 'we are not able to prevent'.
(29) If they were to follow R. Eliezer in other matters (cf. prev. n. but one) also.
(30) Cf. supra n. 6.
(31) For three days (during the 'eleven days' between the menstrual periods) on each of which there was a discharge of blood. If the discharge was not due to the travail she, having observed the blood on three consecutive days, would be subject to the restrictions of a zabah; but if it was due to travail she would be exempt from these restrictions. If a zabah she would have to count after childbirth seven days (as a zabah) in addition to the number of days prescribed for a woman after childbirth, and she would also have to bring two sacrifices one as a zabah and the other as one after childbirth.
(32) After the three days mentioned (cf. prev. n.) and before the birth of the child.
(33) Retrospectively, on account of the discharges on the three days. If the pain had continued until delivery it would have been obvious that the discharge on the three days mentioned was also due to the same cause, but if it ceased some considerable time before birth it may well be concluded that that discharge had no connection with the childbearing and the woman would consequently come within the category of zabah (cf. prev. n. but one).
(34) If such a period has intervened it is obvious that the discharge mentioned was in no way due to travail.
(35) Infra 36b.
(36) Though R. Joshua differs from him.
(37) Lit., 'and the other'.
(38) Sc. the same law applies to either.
(39) After the flux had ceased.
(40) Cf. prev. n. Seven days without any discharge must pass before a zab or a zabah can attain cleanness.
(41) The intermediate five.
(42) Since on the first and the last day they were definitely clean.
(43) And on performing immersion at the close of the seventh day they became clean.
(44) Sc. two days only. As the cleanness of the intermediate days is a matter of doubt they must count another five days to make up the prescribed number of seven. In the case of a certain discharge on any of the days all the prescribed seven days must, of course, be counted all over again.
(45) Infra 68b; since it is possible that there was a discharge on the sixth day, when there was no examination (cf. prev. n. last clause).
(46) Who is consistent in disregarding completely the possibility of a discharge on any of the five days that intervened between the first and last clean ones. Cf. following n.
(47) Who (cf. prev. n.) is inconsistent, seeing that he assumes the possibility of a discharge during the intermediate days and at the same time allows counting the first day as one of the seven clean days.
(48) A possible, like a certain discharge (cf. supra n. 11, last clause) on the sixth day might quite reasonably be regarded as sufficient ground for cancelling all the previous days counted, including the first.
(49) Infra 68b.
(50) Lit., 'and the other'.
(51) In a case where the insides are not affected (as explained infra) lit., 'backs'.
(52) Rabbinically (cf. following two notes).
(53) Through contracting uncleanness from a dead creeping thing. The latter being a primary uncleanness causes the liquids to be an uncleanness of the first grade which (though Pentateuchally, since their uncleanness is not a primary one, it cannot, as explained in Pes. 18a, convey uncleanness to vessels) renders the vessels unclean Rabbinically. As the uncleanness that is conveyed to vessels by liquids is merely Rabbinical, and as it was desired to make a distinction between Pentateuchal and Rabbinical uncleanness, it was enacted that, in such a case, only the outsides of vessels and not their insides shall contract the uncleanness.
(54) Because liquids are prone to uncleanness. In consequence they contract from the vessels a first grade of uncleanness, the same grade as that of the outer sides of the vessels themselves.
(55) Since Pentateuchally (cf. prev. n. but one) they are deemed to be clean.
(56) Toh. VIII, 7; much less do they render them unclean. (This is explained presently.)
(57) Toh. VIII, 7.
(58) Being subject to a secondary grade of uncleanness only (v. following n.).
(59) As explained in Pes. 14b.
(60) How in view of this inference can he maintain his ruling?
(61) Contracted from liquids.
(62) Cf. supra n. 3.
(63) In respect of conveying uncleanness to foodstuffs of terumah.
(64) As deduced from Scripture in Yeb. 74b.
(65) Since it is obvious that Pentateuchal uncleanness should be subject to greater restrictions.
(66) E.g., spittle.
(67) Which is a primary uncleanness Pentateuchally (cf. Lev. XV, 8).
(68) Lit., 'wherein is the difference . . . that he took up', sc. why should not the Mishnah equally speak of the insides of vessels that similarly contracted from liquids Rabbinical uncleanness?
(69) Than those that govern the insides of vessels. In the latter case R. Eliezer agrees that terumah is rendered invalid.
(70) Lit., 'a vessel whose back became unclean by liquids'.
(71) Lit., 'its ear'.
(72) Kelim XXV, 6.
(73) By stating supra that 'the halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer in four cases'.
(74) By laying down the halachah (cf. prev. n.) in the case of rulings where a similar statement was actually embodied in the Mishnah.
(75) Talmud, lit., 'learning'. All statements as to what is the halachah added by a Tanna to a ruling in a Mishnah or a Baraitha must be regarded as a mere opinion or theory which a disciple expressed with reference to a ruling of his master. It is only the carefully considered decisions of the later Amoras that, being based on a minute examination and thorough analysis of their predecessor's views that may be relied upon as authoritative in determining the halachah (cf. Rashi).
(76) Referred to supra by Rab Judah in the name of Samuel, concerning which the halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 8a

'A minor1 is to be instructed2 to exercise her right of mi'un against him'3 and in connection with this Rab Judah citing Samuel stated, 'The halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer'?4 - When Samuel stated 'the halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer in four cases he referred to rulings in the Order of Toharoth,5 but in the other Orders there are many such rulings. This6 also stands to reason, for we learnt: R. Eliezer ruled, Also in the case of one who shovels out loaves of bread7 from an oven and puts them into a basket,8 the basket causes them to be combined in respect of their liability to the dough-offering',9 and in connection with this Rab Judah citing Samuel stated, 'The halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer.'10 This is conclusive. But why is the latter11 a more valid proof12 than the former?13 - Because in the former case R. Eleazar takes up the same standpoint as he,14 for we learnt: R. Eleazar ruled, The minor is to be instructed15 to exercise her right of mi'un against him.16 But does he17 take up the same standpoint?18 Have we not in fact shown19 that both20 were required because they are not like one another?21 - Rather say, Because R. Judah b. Baba takes up the same position as he,22 for we learnt,23 'R. Judah b. Baba testified concerning five things: That minors are urged to exercise their right of mi'un,24 that a woman25 is allowed to remarry on the evidence of one witness,26 that a cock was stoned27 in Jerusalem because it had killed a person,28 that29 wine which was only forty days old30 was poured as a drink-offering upon the altar, and that29 the continual morning sacrifice was offered31 [as late as] at the fourth hour [of the day]'.32 Now does not the expression 'minors'33 imply34 the one of which R. Eleazar and the one of which R. Eliezer spoke?35 - No; by the expression36 'minors' minors in general37 were meant.38 If so,39 should it not have been stated, in the case of the woman40 also, 'women', meaning thereby41 women in general?42 As in the latter case,43 however, it was stated 'woman',44 and in the former 'minors'45 it may be concluded that the expressions are to be taken literally.46 This is conclusive.

R. Eleazar47 also48 stated, 'The halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer in four things'. But are there no more of such rulings?49 Have we not in fact learnt, 'R. Eliezer ruled, The minor is to be instructed to exercise her right of mi'un against him'50 and R. Eleazar stated, 'The halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer'?51 And were you to reply that when R. Eleazar stated, 'The halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer in four things' he referred to the rulings in the Order of Toharoth, but that in the other Orders there are many more such rulings49 [it could be retorted:] But are there any such? Have we not in fact learnt, 'The rose, henna,52 lotus53 and balsam as well as their proceeds are subject to the laws of the Sabbatical year54 and they and their proceeds are also subject to the law of removal,'55 in connection with which R. Pedath56 is observed, 'Who taught57 that balsam is a fruit?58 R. Eliezer'; and R. Zera replied, 'I see that between59 you and your father you will cause balsam to be permitted to the world,60 since you said, "Who taught that balsam is a fruit? R. Eliezer" and your father said, "The halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer in four things".'61 Now, if it were so,62 why did he63 not reply to him,64 'When my father said, "The halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer in four things" he referred only to rulings in the Order of Toharoth but in other Orders there are many more'?65 - But then,66 does not the previous difficulty67 arise? - [In the case of mi'un68 the halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer] because R. Eleazar [b. Shammua'] takes up the same standpoint as he; for we have learnt: R. Eleazar ruled, The minor is to be instructed to exercise her right of mi'un against him.69 But does he70 take up the same standpoint? Have we not in fact shown that both71 were required because they are not like one another?72 - Rather say: Because R. Judah b. Baba takes up the same standpoint as he.70 But are there no more such rulings?73

Have we not in fact learnt: 'R. Akiba ruled, One says it74 as an independent benediction;75 R. Eliezer ruled, One includes it in the benediction of thanksgiving';76 and in connection with this R. Eleazar77 stated,78 'The halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer'? - R. Abba replied: [The halachah agrees with him] in that case because he [may have] said it in the name of R. Hanina b. Gamaliel, for it was taught: R. Akiba ruled, One says it79 as an independent benediction;75 R. Hanina b. Gamaliel ruled, One includes it in the benediction of thanksgiving.

____________________
(1) Who was fatherless and was given in marriage by her mother or brothers (so that her marriage is only Rabbinically valid) and who had a sister that was of age and was married to the minor's husband's brother who died without issue. In accordance with the laws of the levirate marriage the surviving brother must marry the widow, but such marriage cannot take place in this case on account of the prohibition to marry a wife's sister. The minor, furthermore, is now forbidden to live with her husband (whose marriage with her is only Rabbinically valid) on account of the levirate bond between him and her sister (which is Pentateuchal). Rashi speaks here of two 'orphan' sisters, but the Mishnah in Yeb, speaks of 'deaf' sisters.
(2) In order to avoid (cf. prev. n.) the difficulties mentioned.
(3) Her husband. In virtue of mi'un (v. Glos.) she annuls her marriage and sets her husband free to perform the Pentateuchal law of the levirate marriage. Yeb. 109a.
(4) Yeb. 110a.
(5) The sixth, and last order of the Talmud in which the tractate of Niddah is included.
(6) That Samuel referred to the Order of Toharoth alone.
(7) That were made of quantities of dough each of which was never greater than five kab. Only when dough is no less than five kab in bulk is it subject to the dough-offering.
(8) And in their total they amounted to no less than five kab.
(9) Hal. II, 4.
(10) Which shows that outside the Order of Toharoth there are other rulings concerning which the halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer.
(11) Hal. II, 4.
(12) In support of the explanation given (cf. n. 10).
(13) The ruling cited from Yeb. Lit., 'and what is the strength of that from that?'
(14) R. Eliezer.
(15) In certain cases enumerated in Yeb. 111a.
(16) Yeb. 111a, a ruling that is analogous to that of R. Eliezer in Yeb. 109a, and it might have been assumed that only in this case, since R. Eliezer is supported by the authority of R. Eleazar, is the halachah in agreement with the former but not in other cases where he has no such support; hence the citation from Hal, where the halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer even though his ruling has his own authority alone.
(17) R. Eleazar.
(18) As R. Eliezer.
(19) Yeb. 111b.
(20) Statements of Samuel, that the halachah is in agreement with (a) R. Eliezer and (b) R. Eleazar.
(21) How then could it be suggested here that R. Eleazar's ruling provides support for that of R. Eliezer?
(22) R. Eliezer.
(23) So MS.M. Cur. edd. 'it was taught'.
(24) Cf. notes on the similar ruling of R. Eliezer (cited from Yeb. 109a supra).
(25) Whose husband left for a country overseas.
(26) Who testifies that her husband was dead.
(27) In accordance with Ex. XXI, 28 (as expounded in B.K. 54b), though the text speaks only of an ox.
(28) It pecked out the brain of a child.
(29) Lit., 'and about'.
(30) One that is less than forty days old is invalid as 'wine from the vat', which is too new (cf. B.B. 97a, Sonc. ed. p. 405).
(31) On one occasion, during the Syrian Greek siege of Jerusalem, when no sacrifice could be secured.
(32) 'Ed. VI, 1.
(33) Sc. the use of the plural form.
(34) Lit., 'what minors? Not?' etc.
(35) The answer being presumably in the affirmative it follows that R. Eliezer's ruling is supported by the authority of R. Judah b. Baba.
(36) Lit., 'what'.
(37) Of the class spoken of by R. Eleazar.
(38) Excluding the one spoken of by R. Eliezer who, consequently, stands unsupported.
(39) That the plural form in this context is used to indicate the class.
(40) 'That a woman is allowed etc.'
(41) Lit., 'and let us say'.
(42) Obviously it should.
(43) Lit., 'since here' (cf. supra p. 47, n. 25).
(44) In the sing., though the whole class is included.
(45) In the plural.
(46) Lit., 'he learns exactly', sc. that 'minors' in the plural refers to the two classes of minor, the one dealt with by R. Eleazar and the one spoken of by R. Eliezer.
(47) I.e., R. Eleazar b. Pedath who was an Amora. R. Eleazar who laid down the rule of mi'un is a Tanna and was b. Shammua'.
(48) Like Rab Judah who cited Samuel supra 7b.
(49) In regard to which the halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer.
(50) Supra q.v. notes.
(51) Yeb. 110a.
(52) Or 'cyprus flower'.
(53) Or 'gum-mastich'.
(54) Shebi. VII, 6: sc. during that year they must be treated as hefker (v. Glos.) and no trade may be carried on with them.
(55) Sc., as soon as none of these products respectively remained in the field the owner must remove from his house all that he had previously gathered in. The last quoted part, 'and they . . . removal' is wanting in the Mishnah.
(56) The son of R. Eleazar b. Pedath.
(57) In the Mishnah cited from Sheb.
(58) Were it no fruit it would not have been subject to the laws of the Sabbatical Year.
(59) Lit., 'from'.
(60) During the Sabbatical Year, i.e., to be exempt from its restrictions.
(61) But no more. R. Eliezer's restrictive law concerning balsam, since it is not included in the four, must consequently be against the halachah and must, therefore, be disregarded.
(62) That outside the Order of Toharoth there are other rulings of R. Eliezer in agreement with the halachah.
(63) R. Pedath.
(64) R. Zera.
(65) And R. Zera's objection would thus have been met. Since R. Pedath, however, gave no such reply it follows that R. Eleazar's statement that 'the halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer in four things' applies to all the Orders of the Talmud.
(66) Cf. prev. n.
(67) How is it that in the case of mi'un (which is not included in the four) the halachah is also in agreement with R. Eliezer?
(68) Though it is not one of the four (cf. prev. n.).
(69) Supra q.v. notes.
(70) R. Eleazar [b. Shammua'].
(71) The rulings of R. Eliezer and R. Eleazar respectively.
(72) Supra q.v. notes.
(73) Concerning which the halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer.
(74) The benediction of habdalah in the evening service at the conclusion of the Sabbath (cf. P.B., p. 46).
(75) Sc. it is not to be included in any of the statutory benedictions.
(76) Ber. 29a, 33a. Cf. P.B., p. 51.
(77) b. Pedath (cf. supra).
(78) M. J. Ber. (Tosaf).
(79) The benediction of habdalah in the evening service at the conclusion of the Sabbath (cf. P.B., p. 46).

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 8b

But was he1 not much older than he?2 - Rather say:3 Because R. Hanina b. Gamaliel took up4 the same line as he, But did he5 take it up? Was it not in fact taught: On the night of the Day of Atonement6 one recites in his prayers seven benedictions and makes confession; in the morning6 one recites seven benedictions and makes confession; during the additional prayer7 one recites seven benedictions and makes confession; in the afternoon prayer one recites seven benedictions and makes confession; In the concluding prayer8 one recites seven benedictions and makes confession, and in the evening9 one recites seven benedictions embodying the substance of the Eighteen;10 and R. Hanina b. Gamaliel in the name of his ancestors ruled: One must recite in his prayers11 all the eighteen benedictions because it is necessary to include habdalah12 in 'who favourest man with knowledge'?13 - R. Nahman b. Isaac replied: He cited it14 in the name of his ancestors but he himself15 does not uphold it.

Said R. Jeremiah to R. Zera:16 But do you not yourself hold that he who taught that balsam was a fruit is R. Eliezer, seeing that we have learnt: R. Eliezer ruled, Milk curdled with the sap of 'orlah is forbidden?17 - This18 might be said to agree even with the view of the Rabbis, since they differed from R. Eliezer only in respect of the sap of the tree but in the case of the sap of the fruit they agree with him, for we have learnt: R. Joshua stated, I have explicitly heard that milk curdled with the sap of the leaves or with the sap of the roots is permitted, but if it was curdled with the sap of unripe figs it is forbidden because the latter is regarded as a proper fruit.19 And if you prefer I might reply: The Rabbis differ from R. Eliezer only in respect of a fruit producing tree but in the case of a tree that does not produce fruit they agree that its sap is regarded as its fruit, for we have learnt: R. Simeon ruled, Balsam is not subject to the laws of the Sabbatical Year20 and the Sages ruled, Balsam is subject to the laws of the Sabbatical Year because the sap of the tree is regarded as its fruit.21 Now who are the Sages? Are they not in fact the Rabbis who differ22 from R. Eliezer?23 - Thus, a certain elder replied to him, said R. Johanan, 'Who are the "Sages"? R. Eliezer who ruled that its balsam is its fruit'. But if by the 'Sages' R. Eliezer was meant what was the point in speaking of a tree that does not produce fruit seeing that even where a tree produces fruit its sap is regarded as its fruit? - He24 spoke to them25 according to the view of the Rabbis. 'According to my view' [he said in effect,] 'even in the case of a fruit producing tree its sap is regarded as its fruit, but according to your view26 agree with me at least in this case of a tree that produces no fruit that its sap is its fruit. But the Rabbis told him: No difference is made.27

WHO IS REGARDED AS A 'VIRGIN'? ANY WOMAN WHO HAS NOT YET OBSERVED etc. Our Rabbis taught: [If a virgin] married and observed a discharge of blood that was due to the marriage, or if when she bore a child she observed a discharge of blood that was due to the birth, she is still called a 'virgin', because the virgin of whom the Rabbis spoke is one that is a virgin as regards menstrual blood but not one who is so in regard to the blood of virginity.28 Can this, however, be correct?29 Has not R. Kahana in fact stated, 'A Tanna taught: There are three kinds of virgin, the human virgin, the soil virgin and the sycamore virgin. The "human virgin" is one that never30 had any sexual intercourse, the practical issue31 being her eligibility to marry a High Priest32 or else her claim to a kethubah of two hundred zuz;33 the "virgin soil" is one that had never30 been cultivated, the practical issue31 being its designation as "a rough valley"34 or else its legal status as regards purchase and sale;35 the "virgin sycamore" is one that has never36 been cut,37 the practical issue38 being its legal status as regards purchase and sale39 or else the permissibility to cut it37 in the Sabbatical Year, as we have learnt: A virgin sycamore may not be cut in the Sabbatical Year because such cutting is regarded as cultivation'.40 Now if this41 were correct why did he42 not mention this one also? - R. Nahman b. Isaac replied: He only mentioned such as has no special43 name44 but one which bears a special43 name45 he does not mention. R. Shesheth son of R. Idi replied: He46 only mentioned those, the loss of whose virginity47 is dependent on an act48 but one the loss of whose virginity47 is not dependent on an act49 he does not mention. R. Hanina son of R. Ika replied: He46 only mentioned those47 which do not change50 into their original condition51 but one which does change to its original condition52 he does not mention. Rabina replied: He53 only mentioned that to which a purchaser is likely to object54 but that to which a purchaser is not likely to object55 he does not mention. But do not people object?56 Was it not in fact taught, 'R. Hiyya stated: As leaven is wholesome for the dough so is menstrual blood wholesome for a woman'57 and it was also taught in the name of R. Meir, 'Every woman who has an abundance of menstrual blood has many children'?57 - Rather say: He53 only mentioned that which a purchaser is anxious to acquire58 but that59 which a purchaser is not anxious to acquire60 he does not mention.

Our Rabbis taught: What is meant by a virgin soil? One which61 turns up clods62 and whose earth is not loose. If61 a potsherd is found in it, it may be known that it had once been cultivated;63 if flint, it is undoubtedly64 virgin soil.

'A WOMAN IN PREGNANCY'? ONE WHOSE EMBRYO 'CAN BE DISCERNED. At what stage65 is the embryo discernible? - Symmachus citing R. Meir replied: Three months after conception. And though there is no actual proof for this statement there is an allusion66 to it, for it is said in Scripture, And it came to pass about three months after67 etc. 'An allusion to it' [you say], is not this a text of Scripture and a most reliable68 proof? - [It can only be regarded as an allusion] because some women69 give birth after nine months and others after seven months.70

Our Rabbis taught: If a woman was71 in a condition of presumptive pregnancy and after observing a discharge of blood she miscarried an inflated object72 or any other object which had no vitality73 she74 is still deemed to be75 in the condition of her presumptive pregnancy and it suffices for her to reckon her period of menstrual uncleanness from the time of her observation of the discharge.76 And though there is no actual proof for this ruling77 there is an allusion78 to it, for it is said in Scripture, We have been with child, we have been in pain, we have as it were brought forth wind.79 But why only 'an allusion to it' seeing that the text provides actual80 proof? - That text was in fact written about males.81

I would, however, point out an incongruity: If a woman was in hard labour82 for two days83 and on the third day84 she miscarried an inflated object or any thing that had no vitality, she85 is regarded as bearing in the condition of a zabah.86 Now if you maintain that such miscarriage is a proper birth

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(1) R. Eliezer, a contemporary and brother-in-law of R. Gamaliel the son of Simeon who was one of the 'Ten Royal Martyrs' (Rashi).
(2) Hanina, who was a son of R. Gamaliel of Jamnia (v. Tosaf.). Now is it likely that an older scholar would quote a tradition on the authority of a younger one?
(3) In explanation why the halachah is in agreement with R. Eliezer in this particular case.
(4) At a later date. Lit., 'stands'.
(5) R. Hanina.
(6) The 'Day' extending over a night and the following day.
(7) Musaf, which on Sabbaths and festivals is recited after the morning service.
(8) Ne'ilah, the last prayer before sunset on the Day of Atonement.
(9) That follows the solemn day.
(10) I.e., instead of all the 'eighteen (now nineteen) benedictions' that are to be recited at ordinary weekday services (cf. P.B., p. 44ff) one recites on this occasion only the first three and the last three benedictions, and inserts between a shortened prayer embracing the salient features of the intermediate ones (cf. P.B., p. 55).
(11) Even on the evening mentioned.
(12) The prayer added to the service at the conclusion of Sabbaths and festival days (cf. P.B., p. 46).
(13) Yoma 87b, Pes. 3a. Cf. P.B., l.e. In the shortened prayer, where this benediction is reduced to a few words, this cannot be done. Now, since R. Hanina here states that habdalah is to be included in the benediction 'who favourest etc.' how could it be said supra that he adopts the same line as R. Eliezer who requires it to be included in the benediction of thanksgiving?
(14) The last quoted ruling.
(15) Who is in agreement with R. Eliezer.
(16) Who objected (supra 8a) to R. Pedath's assertion as to the authorship of the ruling on balsam.
(17) 'Orlah I, 7; because the sap is considered a fruit to which the prohibitions of 'orlah apply. Balsam also being a sap, must not the ruling that balsam is a fruit obviously be that of R. Eliezer?
(18) The ruling just cited.
(19) 'Orlah I, 7.
(20) 'Because it is not regarded as a fruit', Sheb. VII, 6.
(21) This quotation does not actually occur in the Mishnah cited (cf. prev. n.) but is implied from the ruling of the first Tanna ibid.
(22) In the case of other trees.
(23) Presumably they are. Thus it follows, as R. Zera submitted, that in the case of balsam the Rabbis are of the same opinion as R. Eliezer and that there is no need, therefore, to attribute to him the ruling which is in agreement with the halachah.
(24) R. Eliezer.
(25) Those who differed from him.
(26) Which does not regard the sap of a fruit bearing tree as fruit.
(27) Between the two kinds of tree. In neither case can sap be regarded as fruit.
(28) Or birth.
(29) Lit., 'I am not'.
(30) Lit., 'all the time that she (had) not'.
(31) Between being regarded as a virgin or not.
(32) Cf. Lev. XXI, 13.
(33) Only a virgin is entitled to that sum. One who is no virgin is entitled to one hundred zuz only.
(34) Deut. XXI, 4, in the case where a murdered man was found in a field and his murderers cannot be discovered when a heifer is brought into a rough valley and a prescribed ceremonial is performed (v. ibid. 1ff).
(35) If a plot of land has been sold or bought as 'virgin soil' it must be one that has never before been cultivated.
(36) Lit., 'all the time that she (had) not'.
(37) Since the cutting causes new growth.
(38) Between being regarded as a virgin or not.
(39) Cf. supra n. 10 mut. mut.
(40) Which is forbidden (cf. Lev. XXV, 4); Sheb. IV, 5.
(41) That there is also a virginity as regards menstrual blood.
(42) R. Kahana who only spoke of three kinds of virgin.
(43) Lit., 'attached', 'accompanying'.
(44) 'Virgin' alone being sufficient.
(45) Such as the 'virgin in respect of menstrual blood' whom 'virgin' alone would not sufficiently describe.
(46) R. Kahana who only spoke of three kinds.
(47) Lit., 'a thing that'.
(48) Such as intercourse, cultivation or cutting.
(49) As is the case with a discharge of menstrual blood which is a natural and involuntary process.
(50) After intercourse, cultivation and cutting respectively.
(51) Lit., 'to its creation', neither the woman nor the soil nor the sycamore can (cf. prev. n.) change into her or its original condition.
(52) A woman in old age loses her flow and changes, in this respect, into a condition similar to her original virginity.
(53) R. Kahana who only spoke of three kinds.
(54) No one who could help it would be likely to marry a non-virgin or to buy land that was already exploited or a sycamore that was cut.
(55) One who marries a virgin does not care whether or not she ever had her menstrual flow.
(56) Cf. prev. n.
(57) Keth. 10b.
(58) Lit., 'that . . . jumps on it', people are anxious to marry a virgin, to buy a plot of land that was never before exploited and a sycamore that was never before cut.
(59) A virgin who has no menstrual flow.
(60) For the reasons indicated by R. Hiyya and R. Meir supra.
(61) On being broken up.
(62) That need crushing.
(63) How else could the potsherd have found its way into it?
(64) Lit., 'behold this'.
(65) Lit., 'and how much'.
(66) Lit., 'remembrance'.
(67) That it was told . . . she is with child, Gen, XXXVIII, 24.
(68) Lit., 'great'.
(69) Lit., 'there is'.
(70) And it might have been assumed that the three months of the text (representing a third of nine) applied to the former only while in the case of the latter the stage of recognition begins after 7/3 = 2 1/3, months.
(71) Lit., 'behold she was'.
(72) Lit., 'wind'.
(73) Lit., 'existence'.
(74) Despite the fact that her pregnancy, as is now evident, was not natural.
(75) As regards retrospective uncleanness.
(76) Not twenty-four hours retrospectively as is the case with one who is not pregnant.
(77) That an inflated object (cf. supra n. 12) is regarded as a viable embryo in respect of pregnancy.
(78) Lit., 'remembrance',
(79) Emphasis on the last word. Isa. XXVI, 18. Tosef. Nid. I.
(80) Lit., 'great'.
(81) In whose case conception and birth are mere metaphorical expressions.
(82) Accompanied by a flow of blood.
(83) During the eleven days in which she is susceptible to the uncleanness of a zabah (v. foll. nn.).
(84) After a further discharge of blood, so that (cf. prev. n. but one) her bleeding and pain extended over three consecutive days.
(85) Since there was no proper birth though she had no relief from her pain between the time of the discharge and the miscarriage.
(86) V. Glos. Sc. she must count seven days and bring the sacrifice prescribed for a zabah before she can attain cleanness.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 9a

did not the All Merciful [it may be objected] ordain that [a flow of blood in] painful labour immediately before birth1 is regarded as clean?2 - R. Papi replied: Leave alone the question of the twenty-four hours retrospective uncleanness3 which only involves a Rabbinical enactment.4 R. Papa replied: The actual reason5 is that the woman6 feels a heaviness in her head and limbs;7 well then, here also8 she feels a heaviness in her head and in her limbs.9

R. Jeremiah enquired of R. Zera: What is the ruling10 where a woman observed a flow and immediately after her pregnancy was discerned? Is she retrospectively unclean because her pregnancy was not known at the time she observed the flow or is she not retrospectively unclean since she observed it immediately before she became aware of her pregnancy? - The other replied: The sole reason11 is that she12 feels a heaviness in her head and limbs13 but14 at the time she observed the flow she felt no heaviness either in her head or in her limbs.15

A certain old man asked R. Johanan: 'What is the ruling if, when the time of her fixed period had come during the days of her pregnancy and she did not examine herself? I am raising this question on the view of the authority who laid down [that a woman's duty to hold an examination on the arrival of her] fixed periods is an ordinance of the Torah.16 What is the ruling [I ask]? Must she17 examine herself since [the duty of holding an examination on the arrival of] the fixed periods is an ordinance of the Torah16 or is it possible that since18 her menstrual blood is suspended,19 she requires no examination'?20 - The other21 replied, You have learnt it: R. Meir ruled, If a woman was in a hiding-place22 when the time of her fixed period arrived and she did not examine herself she is nevertheless clean because fear suspends the menstrual flow.23 Now the reason is24 that there was fear, but if there had been no fear and the time of her fixed period had arrived and she did not examine herself she would have been deemed unclean. It is thus clear25 [that a woman's duty to examine herself at the time of the arrival of her] fixed periods is an ordinance of the Torah and that, nevertheless, since there was fear, her menstrual blood is deemed to be suspended and she requires no exemption; so also here,26 since her menstrual blood is suspended she requires no examination.

'A NURSING WOMAN'? A WOMAN BEFORE SHE HAS WEANED etc. Our Rabbis taught: A nursing mother whose child died within twenty-four months27 is in exactly the same position as all other women28 and causes retrospective uncleanness for a period of twenty-four hours or from the previous to the last examination. If, therefore,29 she continued to suck it for four or five years it suffices for her to reckon her period of uncleanness from the time she has observed the flow; so R. Meir. R. Judah, R. Jose and R. Simeon ruled: Only during the twenty-four months30 does it suffice for women to reckon their uncleanness from the time they have observed a flow.31 Therefore,32 even if she suckled it for four or five years she causes uncleanness retrospectively for twenty-four hours or from the previous to the last examination.33 Now if you will carefully consider [the views just expressed] you will find that34 according to the view of R. Meir the menstrual blood is decomposed and turns into milk while according to the view of R. Jose, R. Judah and R. Simeon the woman's limbs35 are disjointed and her natural vigour36 does not return before the lapse of twenty-four months. Why the necessity for the 'therefore'37 of R. Meir?38 - On account of the 'therefore'39 of R. Jose. But why the necessity for the 'therefore' of R. Jose?40 - It might have been assumed that R. Jose maintains that41 there are two [causes];42 hence we were informed43 [that he upholds the one cause only].44 So it was also taught: The menstrual blood45 is decomposed and turns into milk; so R. Meir. R. Jose stated: Her limbs46 are disjointed and her natural strength does not return before twenty-four months.47 R. Elai explained: What is R. Meir's reason?48 That it is written, Who can bring a clean thing49 from out of an unclean?50 Is it not the Only One?51 And the Rabbis?52 - R. Johanan replied: The reference53 is to semen which is unclean, while the man who is created from it is clean; and R. Eleazar replied: The reference53 is to the water of sprinkling54 in the case of which the man who sprinkles it as well as the man upon whom it is sprinkled is clean while he who touches it is unclean. But is the man who sprinkles it clean? Is it not in fact written, And he that sprinkleth the water of sprinkling shall wash his clothes?55 - What is meant by 'He that sprinkleth'? He that touches it. But is it not actually written, 'He that sprinkleth'55 and also 'He that toucheth'?55 Furthermore, is not 'He that sprinkleth' required to wash his clothes55 while 'He that toucheth' is not required to do so?55 - Rather say: What is meant by 'He that sprinkleth'? He that carries.56 Then why was it not written, 'He that carries'? - We were informed57 that uncleanness is not contracted unless one carried the minimum quantity prescribed for sprinkling. This is a satisfactory explanation according to him who holds58 that sprinkling must be performed with a prescribed minimum of the water59 . What, however, can be said according to him who holds that no prescribed minimum is required?58 - Even according to him who holds that no prescribed quantity is required the ruling refers only to the quantity applied to the body of the man but as regards that which is in the vessel a prescribed quantity is required; as we have learnt: What must be the quantity of water59 that it shall suffice for a sprinkling? As much as suffices for both the dipping therein of the tops of the stalks and for the sprinkling.60 It is, in fact, in view of such laws61 that Solomon observed, I said: 'I will get wisdom'; but it was far from me.62

WHO IS REGARDED 'AN OLD WOMAN'? ANY WOMAN OVER WHOM THREE ONAHS HAVE PASSED NEAR THE TIME OF HER OLD AGE. What is to be understood by NEAR THE TIME OF HER OLD AGE? - Rab Judah replied: The age when her women friends speak of her as an old woman; and R. Simeon63 replied:

____________________
(1) The woman having had no relief from her pain between the appearance of the flow and birth (cf. prev. n. but one).
(2) V. infra 37b. Why then should the woman here be treated as a zabah?
(3) With which the first of the apparently contradictory Baraithas deals.
(4) And could, therefore, be relaxed even in the case of a pregnancy that ended in a miscarriage. As regards the pentateuchal uncleanness of a zabah, however, a miscarriage of the nature spoken of in the last cited Baraitha cannot be regarded as a proper birth.
(5) Why a pregnant woman is to reckon her menstrual uncleanness from the very moment she has observed a discharge and not retrospectively.
(6) During her pregnancy.
(7) Sc. she is suffering from a malady which causes her menstrual flow to disappear.
(8) In the case of a pregnancy that ended in a miscarriage spoken of in the first of the Baraithas under discussion.
(9) It is obvious, therefore, that she also suffers from the same malady (cf. prev. n. but one) in consequence of which she is entitled to the same privileges (cf. supra n. 10).
(10) In respect of the twenty-four hours retrospective uncleanness.
(11) V. p. 55, n. 10.
(12) During her pregnancy.
(13) V. p. 55, n. 12.
(14) In the case about which R. Jeremiah enquired.
(15) She cannot, therefore, be regarded as a pregnant woman, and her uncleanness is retrospective.
(16) Sc. a traditional halachah handed down from the time of Moses (Rashi), so that since the flow may be expected to make its appearance on the regular day, a woman who did not examine herself at such a period, must be regarded as unclean (v. infra 16a).
(17) If she is to be regarded as clean.
(18) During pregnancy.
(19) And the regular appearance of her menstrual blood need not be expected.
(20) I.e., she is deemed to be clean even if she did not examine herself.
(21) R. Johanan.
(22) In fear of her life.
(23) Infra 39a.
(24) Why in this particular case the woman is regarded as clean.
(25) Since in the absence of fear the woman is deemed to be unclean.
(26) The case of the pregnant woman referred to in the old man's enquiry.
(27) After birth. This is the normal period a mother is expected to suckle her child.
(28) Who are not pregnant or nursing; because the menstrual flow is suspended only on account of its transformation into the mother's milk, but when the child dies and the milk is no longer used the blood changes into its original condition.
(29) Since the cleanness of the woman is entirely due to her suckling (cf. prev. n.).
(30) Irrespective of whether the child is suckled or not.
(31) The suspension of the menstrual blood for twenty-four months being due in their opinion to the physical disturbance caused by the process of childbearing.
(32) Since it is the process of bearing and not the suckling of the child (cf. prev. n.) that causes the suspension of the blood and since that suspension does not continue longer than twenty-four months.
(33) Cf. Tosef. Nid. II where, however, 'R. Judah' is omitted.
(34) Lit., 'as you will find to say'.
(35) When she is in childbirth.
(36) Manifested by her menstrual flow.
(37) 'If, therefore, she continued etc.' supra.
(38) Sc. since R. Meir ruled that the death of the child causes its mother to resume the status of an ordinary non-nursing woman it obviously follows that the main cause of her former exemption from retrospective uncleanness was her suckling of the child, what need then was there to specify an inference (cf. prev. n.) which is all too obvious?
(39) 'Therefore, even if she suckled etc.', supra.
(40) Cf. prev. n. but one mut. mut.
(41) For the suspension of the menstrual flow.
(42) (a) The blood turns into milk and (b) the woman's limbs are disjointed on account of (b) the woman is exempt from retrospective uncleanness during the twenty-four months following her childbearing, irrespective of whether the child is suckled or not, while on account of (a) she should be similarly exempt throughout the time she is suckling the child.
(43) By the addition of 'Therefore' (cf. supra n. 14).
(44) That 'the woman's limbs are disjointed'.
(45) Of a nursing woman.
(46) Those of a woman in childbirth.
(47) Bek. 6b.
(48) For holding that the menstrual blood turns into milk.
(49) Milk.
(50) Menstrual blood.
(51) Job XIV, 4; E. V. 'not one'.
(52) Sc. how do they, who differ from R. Meir, in maintaining that the blood does not turn into milk, explain the text cited?
(53) In Job XIV, 4 cited.
(54) Cf. Num. XIX, 9.
(55) Ibid. 21.
(56) The water of sprinkling.
(57) By the expression, 'He that sprinkleth' instead of 'he that carries'.
(58) Cf. Zeb. 80a.
(59) The water of sprinkling.
(60) Parah XII, 5.
(61) Which are apparently paradoxical: The man who sprinkles the water or is sprinkled upon is clean while he who merely touched it is unclean.
(62) Eccl. VII, 23.
(63) MS.M. adds 'b. Lakish'.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 9b

when people call her mother in her presence1 and she does not blush. R. Zera and R. Samuel b. Isaac differ:2 One says, '[When she is called mother] and3 she does not mind,' and the other says, 'And3 she does not blush' - What is the practical difference between them? - The practical difference between them is the case of one who blushes but does not mind.

What is the length of an 'onah? - Resh Lakish citing R. Judah Nesi'ah4 replied: A normal 'onah is thirty days; but Raba, citing R. Hisda, replied: Twenty days. In fact, however, there is no difference of opinion between them. One Master5 reckons both the clean and the unclean days6 while the other Master7 does not reckon the unclean days.8

Our Rabbis taught: If over an old woman have passed three 'onahs9 and then she observed a flow, it suffices for her to reckon her period of uncleanness from the time she observed the flow; if another three 'onahs have passed9 and then she observed a flow, it again suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed it. If, however, another three 'onahs have passed9 and then she observed a flow she is regarded10 as all other women and causes uncleanness retrospectively for twenty-four hours or from the previous examination to the last examination. This11 is the case not only12 where she observed the flow at perfectly regular intervals13 but even where she observed it at successively decreasing intervals or14 increasing intervals.15 [You say,] 'Even16 where she observed it at successively decreasing intervals'. It thus follows17 that there is no need to mention that this law11 applies where she observed the flow at perfectly regular ones. But should not the law be reversed, seeing that where she observes a flow at perfectly regular intervals she thereby establishes for herself a fixed period and it should, therefore, suffice for her to reckon her period of uncleanness from the time she observed the flow? And should you reply that this18 represents the view of the Rabbis who differ from R. Dosa in maintaining that even a woman who has a fixed period causes retrospective uncleanness for twenty-four hours,19 [it could be objected:] Should not the order20 have been reversed to read as follows: Not only where she observed the flow at successively decreasing intervals or increasing intervals21 but even where she observed it at perfectly regular ones?22 - Read: Not only where she observed the flow at successively decreasing intervals or increasing intervals21 but even where she observed it at perfectly regular ones.23 And if you prefer I might reply, It is this that was meant: This24 does not apply where a woman observed the flow at perfectly regular intervals but only where she observed it at successively decreasing or increasing ones. Where, however, she observed it at perfectly regular intervals she thereby establishes for herself a fixed period and it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she has observed the flow. And whose view does this represent? That of R. Dosa.19

R. ELIEZER RULED: FOR ANY WOMAN OVER WHOM HAVE PASSED etc. It was taught: R. Eliezer said to the Sages. It once happened to a young woman at Haitalu25 that her menstrual flow was interrupted for three 'onahs, and when the matter was submitted to the Sages they ruled that it sufficed for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed the flow. They replied: A time of emergency is no proof. What was the emergency? - Some say, It was a time of dearth,26 while others say, The quantity of foodstuffs the woman had prepared27 was rather large and the Rabbis took into consideration the desirability of avoiding the loss of the levitically clean things.

Our Rabbis taught: It once happened that Rabbi acted in agreement with the ruling of R. Eliezer, and after he reminded himself observed, 'R. Eliezer deserves to be relied upon in an emergency'. What could be the meaning of 'after he reminded himself'? If it be explained: After he reminded himself that the halachah was not in agreement with R. Eliezer but in agreement with the Rabbis [the difficulty would arise:] How could he act according to the former's ruling even in an emergency? - The fact is that it was not stated whether the law was in agreement with the one Master or with the other Master. Then what is meant by 'after he reminded himself'? - After he reminded himself that it was not an individual that differed from him but that many differed from him, he observed 'R. Eliezer deserves to be relied upon in an emergency'.

Our Rabbis taught: If a young girl who had not yet attained the age of menstruation28 observed a discharge, after the first time it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed it; after the second time also29 it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed it, but after the third time30 she is in the same position as all other women31 and32 causes uncleanness retrospectively33 for twenty-four hours or from her previous examination to her last examination. If subsequently three 'onahs have passed over her34 and then she again observed a discharge it suffices for her35 to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed it.36 If another three 'onahs have passed over her34 and then again she observed a discharge it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed it. But if another three 'onahs have passed over her37 and she again observed a discharge she is in the same position as all other women38 and causes uncleanness retrospectively for twenty-four hours or from her previous examination to her last one.39 When, however, a girl had attained the age of menstruation,40 after the first observation it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed the discharge, while after the second time she causes uncleanness retrospectively for twenty-four hours or from her previous examination to her last examination.41 If subsequently three 'onahs have passed over her42 and then she again observed a discharge, it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed it.43

The Master said,44 'If subsequently three 'onahs have passed over her and then she again observed a discharge, it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed it'.

____________________
(1) So MS.M. Cur. edd. 'mother, mother'.
(2) On what was meant by 'near old age'.
(3) Lit., 'all that'.
(4) The Prince, Judah II.
(5) Resh Lakish.
(6) I.e., the interval between one period and another which is thirty days.
(7) Raba.
(8) Which number ten (seven as menstruant and three as zabah) leaving (thirty minus ten are) twenty clean days (Rashi. Cf., however, Tosaf.).
(9) Without her observing any flow during all this time.
(10) Lit., 'behold she'; since the appearance of the flow for the third time establishes the fact that her menstrual flow had not yet ceased and that only the length of the intervals between its periodic appearances has changed.
(11) That after a third appearance the woman's uncleanness begins twenty-four hours retrospectively.
(12) Cf. MS.M and marg. n. Cur. edd. 'and it is not necessary (to state)', the word 'necessary' appearing in parenthesis.
(13) I.e., if each interval was, for instance, exactly ninety days.
(14) Cur. edd. in parenthesis. 'and even'.
(15) Sc. irrespective of whether (a) the first interval extended over ninety-three days, the second over ninety-two and the third only over ninety or (b) the first extended over ninety-one days, the second over ninety-two and the third over ninety-three days.
(16) Emphasis on this word.
(17) Since the expression 'even' is used (cf. prev. n.).
(18) That the woman is unclean retrospectively even when she has a fixed period.
(19) Supra 4b.
(20) Of the Baraitha under discussion.
(21) Is her uncleanness retrospective for twenty-four hours.
(22) Where it might have been presumed that she has thereby established for herself a fixed period.
(23) Cf. prev. n. but one; the ruling representing the view of the Rabbis (supra 4b).
(24) That after a third appearance the woman's uncleanness begins twenty-four hours retrospectively.
(25) [Babylonian form for Aitalu, modern Aiterun, N.W. of Kadish. V. S. Klein, Beitrage, p. 47.]
(26) When a decision to regard all the foodstuffs the woman had touched during the preceding twenty-four hours as unclean would have involved a serious loss and undue hardship.
(27) During the preceding twenty-four hours.
(28) Lit., 'whose time to see (the menses) has not arrived'.
(29) Since presumptive menstruation like any other condition of presumption cannot be established by one occurrence.
(30) Since according to Rabbi (with whose view, as shown infra, this Baraitha agrees) two occurrences suffice to establish a condition of presumption.
(31) Who are in a condition of presumptive menstruation.
(32) In accordance with Rabbinic law.
(33) As a preventive measure enacted in the case of all such women (cf. prev. n. but one).
(34) Without her observing any discharge.
(35) Since the complete absence of the flow for three 'onahs is regarded as the cessation of the flow.
(36) In agreement with R. Eliezer (cf. our Mishnah).
(37) Without her observing any discharge.
(38) Who are in a condition of presumptive menstruation.
(39) Because the appearance of the discharge for the third time proved that her flow had not ceased and that only the intervals between the discharges had been lengthened.
(40) This being the case spoken of in our Mishnah: AND OF WHAT DID THEY SPEAK . . . OF A FIRST OBSERVATION.
(41) Cf. our Mishnah: BUT AT A SUBSEQUENT OBSERVATION . . . HOURS.
(42) Without her observing any discharge.
(43) In agreement with R. Eliezer (cf. our Mishnah).
(44) Supra; in regard to a young girl who had not yet attained the age of menstruation and who observed a discharge at the end of each of three consecutive 'onahs.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 10a

What is the ruling where1 she again observes discharges at the end of subsequent single 'onahs?2 - R. Giddal citing Rab replied: After the first time and after the second time it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time of her observation of the discharge, but after the third time she causes uncleanness retrospectively for twenty-four hours or from her previous examination to her last examination.

'If another three 'onahs have passed over her and then again she observed a discharge it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed it'. What is the ruling where she again observes discharges at the end of single 'onahs?3 - R. Kahana citing R. Giddal who had it from Rab replied: After the first time it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed the discharge but after the second time she causes uncleanness retrospectively for twenty-four hours or from her previous examination to her last examination. Whose view does this4 represent? That of Rabbi who laid down that if a thing has occurred twice presumption is established.5 Read then the final clause:6 'If subsequently three 'onahs have passed over her and then she again observed a discharge, it suffices for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observed it'. Does not this agree only with the view of R. Eliezer?7 And should you reply that it in fact represents the view of Rabbi but that in the case of [an interval of three] 'onahs he holds the same view as R. Eliezer, [it could be retorted]: Does he indeed hold the same view seeing that it was stated, 'After he reminded himself'?8 - The fact is that it represents the view of R. Eliezer but9 [in respect of presumption in the case of] menstrual periods he is of the same opinion as Rabbi.10

A stain [discovered by one who had not yet reached the age of menstruation] between her first and second [observation of a discharge] is regarded as clean,11 but as regards one discovered between her second and third observation, Hezekiah ruled: It is unclean, while R. Johanan ruled: It is clean. 'Hezekiah ruled: It is unclean', since, when she observed [a discharge for the third time] she becomes unclean [retrospectively],12 her stain also13 causes her to be unclean; 'while R. Johanan ruled: It is clean,' for this reason: Since14 she was not yet confirmed in the condition of presumptive menstruation15 she cannot be regarded as unclean on account of her stain.

____________________
(1) After the one discharge at the end of the three 'onahs respectively.
(2) Sc. does it suffice for her to reckon her uncleanness from the time she observes the discharge or is her uncleanness to be retrospective? The reasons for and against are discussed in Rashi.
(3) V. p. 63, n. 10.
(4) The ruling that after the second time she is already in a condition of presumptive menstruation.
(5) Infra 64a, Keth. 43b, Yeb. 26a.
(6) The case of one who 'had attained the age of menstruation'.
(7) Who ruled in our Mishnah: FOR ANY WOMAN OVER WHOM HAVE PASSED THREE 'ONAHS IT SUFFICES . . . TO RECKON FROM THE TIME SHE OBSERVED IT.
(8) Supra 9b q.v., from which it is evident that only after much hesitation and reluctance did he follow R. Eliezer's view.
(9) As regards the difficulty of establishing presumption after two occurrences.
(10) Who in all cases holds that two occurrences constitute presumption.
(11) I.e., it is not deemed to be due to menstrual blood. Cf. supra 5a.
(12) Which shows that her presumptive menstruation begins after her second discharge.
(13) Since it appeared at a period of (cf. prev. n.) presumptive menstruation.
(14) At the time the stain was discovered.
(15) This condition being established retrospectively only after the appearance of a third discharge.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 10b

R. Elai demurred:1 But what is the difference between this class of woman and a virgin [just married] whose blood is clean?2 - R. Zera replied: In the case of the latter her secretion3 is frequent4 but in that of the former her secretion is not frequent.5

'Ulla stated: R. Johanan who had it from R. Simeon b. Jehozadak6 ruled, 'If a young girl who had not yet attained the age of menstruation observed a discharge, her spittle or her midras- uncleanness in the street7 after a first discharge and after a second discharge is clean,8 and her stain is also clean'; but I do not know [whether the last ruling]9 was his own or his Master's.10 In what practical issue could this matter? - In respect of establishing the ruling11 to be the view of one authority11 against two authorities.12 When Rabin and all the other seafarers came13 they stated that the ruling was in agreement with the view of R. Simeon b. Jehozadak.

R. Hilkiah b. Tobi ruled: In the case of a young girl who had not yet reached the age of menstruation14 a discharge of menstrual blood, even if it continued15 throughout all the seven days,16 is regarded as a single observation.17 [Since you say,] 'Even18 if it continued'15 it follows that there is no necessity to state that the law is so19 where there was a break.20 But is not this contrary to reason, seeing that a break would cause the discharge to be like two separate observations? - Rather read: In the case of a young girl who had not yet reached the age of menstruation,14 a discharge of menstrual blood that21 continued throughout all the seven days22 is regarded as a single observation. R. Shimi b. Hiyya ruled: Dripping is not like an observation.23 is But does not the woman in fact observe it?24 - Read: It is not like a continuous discharge but like one broken up.25 Does this26 then imply that the continuous discharge27 was one like28 a river?29 - Rather read: It is only like a continuous discharge.30

Our Rabbis taught: It is established that the daughters of Israel before reaching the age of puberty are definitely31 in a condition of presumptive cleanness and the [elder] women need not examine them. When they have reached the age of puberty they are definitely31 in a condition of presumptive uncleanness and [elder] women must examine them. R. Judah ruled: They must not examine them with their fingers32 because they might corrupt them,33 but they dab them with oil within and wipe it off from without and they are thus self examined.34

R. JOSE RULED: FOR A WOMAN IN PREGNANCY etc. A Tanna recited in the presence of R. Eleazar, 'R. Jose ruled: As for a woman in pregnancy and a nursing woman over whom three onahs have passed it suffices for her35 [to reckon her35 period of uncleanness from] the time of her [observation of the flow]'. 'You', the other remarked, 'began with two36 and finished with one;37 do you perchance mean: A pregnant woman who was also38 a nurse,39 and this40 teaches us incidentally the law that [in respect of an interval of three 'onahs]41 the days of a woman's pregnancy supplement those of her nursing and those of her nursing supplement those of her pregnancy? As it was taught: 'The days of her pregnancy supplement those of her nursing and the days of her nursing supplement those of her pregnancy. In what manner? If there was a break42 of two 'onahs during her pregnancy and of one during her nursing, or of two during her nursing and one during her pregnancy, or of one and a half during her pregnancy and one and a half during her nursing, they are all combined into a series of three 'onahs'.43 One can well understand the ruling that 'the days of her pregnancy supplement those of her nursing' since this is possible where a woman became pregnant while she was still continuing her nursing. But how is it possible that 'the days of her nursing44 supplement those of her pregnancy'?45 - If you wish I might reply: This is possible in the case of a dry birth.46 And if you prefer I might reply: Menstrual blood is one thing and birth blood is another thing.47 And if you prefer I might reply: Read the first clause only.48

OF WHAT DID THEY SPEAK WHEN THEY LAID DOWN THAT IT SUFFICES [FOR THEM TO RECKON] THEIR [PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME [OF THEIR DISCOVERY OF THE FLOW]'? etc. Rab stated: This49 refers to all of them,50 and Samuel stated: This49 was learnt only in respect of a virgin51 and an old woman52 but for pregnant or nursing women53 it suffices for them, throughout all the days of their pregnancy and throughout all the days of their nursing respectively to reckon their uncleanness from the time of their observing a flow. In the same manner R. Simeon b. Lakish stated: This54 refers to all of them; while R. Johanan stated: This was learnt only in respect of a virgin and an old woman but for pregnant or nursing women it suffices throughout all the days of their pregnancy and throughout all the days of their nursing respectively to reckon their uncleanness from the time of their observing the flow. This dispute55 is analogous to one between Tannas. [For it was taught]: If pregnant or nursing women were

____________________
(1) Against Hezekiah.
(2) In the case of the latter the blood is assumed to be that of the wound caused by a first intercourse which is exempt from the laws of uncleanness. If on the following day, however, the colour of the discharge changed the woman becomes unclean, but a bloodstain discovered after intercourse (cf. infra 60a) is nevertheless clean. Why then should a stain in the former case be unclean on account of the subsequent discharge? (V. Tosaf.).
(3) The discharge of the wound (cf. prev. n.).
(4) So that there is a double reason why the stain should be regarded as clean. For (a) it might be attributed to blood that issued from a foreign body and (b) even if it is to be attributed to blood of the woman's own body that blood might have been the secretion of the wound (v. Tosaf.).
(5) And if the stain is due to blood that originated from the woman's body it could not be other than menstrual which causes uncleanness.
(6) This is not the scholar of the same name mentioned in Sanh. 26a who was spoken of disparagingly in the presence of R. Johanan (R. Tam.). The one here mentioned was a teacher of R. Johanan whose honour the latter would have protected had anything derogatory been said against him in his presence.
(7) I.e., if it was discovered in a public place and it is uncertain whether the girl was a menstruant at that time.
(8) As presumptive menstruation had not yet been established uncleanness cannot be imposed in a doubtful case (cf. prev. n.).
(9) Concerning the stain.
(10) R. Simeon b. Jehozadak's.
(11) Of Hezekiah (supra 10a).
(12) R. Johanan and R. Simeon b. Jehozadak; and the law would accordingly be in agreement with the majority. If R. Johanan, however, gave the ruling in his own name alone Hezekiah is opposed by one authority only and the law need not necessarily be against him.
(13) From Palestine to Babylon.
(14) Lit., 'whose time to see (the menses) has not arrived'.
(15) Lit., 'she pours'.
(16) The normal period of menstruation.
(17) Sc. until there were two more observations her period of uncleanness does not begin retrospectively but from the time she observes the discharge.
(18) Emphasis on this word.
(19) That the discharge 'throughout all the seven days is regarded as a single observation'.
(20) Though it was followed by a renewal of the discharge.
(21) Omitting 'even' (cf. supra n. 9) used in the first version supra.
(22) The normal period of menstruation.
(23) Lit., 'one who drips is not like one who sees'. This is now assumed to mean that dripping is not regarded even as a single observation.
(24) The dripping. How then can it be maintained that it is not regarded even as one observation (cf. prev. n.)?
(25) I.e., like a number of separate observations. By the time the dripping ceases completely the woman is deemed to be in a confirmed condition of presumptive menstruation and any subsequent discharge causes her uncleanness to be retrospective.
(26) The distinction drawn between 'dripping' and a 'continual discharge'.
(27) Since it is regarded as a single observation.
(28) Cur. edd. in parenthesis, 'also'.
(29) Sc. without a stop. But is this likely? No woman surely could survive a discharge of blood that was continuous for seven days.
(30) It is regarded as one observation and the girl is not subject to retrospective uncleanness before she has experienced two more menstrual discharges.
(31) Lit., 'behold they'.
(32) Lit., 'with the hand'.
(33) By teaching them unnatural gratification (Jast.). Aliter: They might injure them with their nails (Rashi).
(34) Since at puberty an application of oil induces the menstrual flow.
(35) The use of the sing, for the plural is discussed presently.
(36) 'A woman in pregnancy and a nursing woman'.
(37) By using the sing. (cf. prev. n. but one).
(38) Rendering the waw as 'who' instead of 'and'.
(39) A woman, for instance, (v. infra) who became pregnant while she was still nursing her last-born child.
(40) Since the same law applies also to one who is pregnant only.
(41) Which exempts a woman from retrospective uncleanness.
(42) In the menses.
(43) Infra 36a.
(44) Between which and pregnancy there must be the childbirth and consequent bleeding.
(45) Would not the bleeding at childbirth interrupt the bloodless interval of the three 'onahs?
(46) So that there is no bleeding (cf. prev. n. but one) to interrupt the three 'onahs.
(47) I.e., the latter does not in any way interrupt the interval of the former.
(48) Lit., 'one', viz., 'the days of her pregnancy supplement those of her nursing', omitting the final clause, 'the days of her nursing . . . pregnancy'.
(49) The statement just quoted the conclusion of which is that 'AT A SUBSEQUENT OBSERVATION SHE CONVEYS UNCLEANNESS RETROSPECTIVELY FOR A PERIOD OF TWENTY-FOUR HOURS'.
(50) Sc. the four classes enumerated earlier in our Mishnah.
(51) Who, after two observations, may well be deemed to have reached the age of presumptive menstruation.
(52) Who also, since after the interruption she had her menses twice, may be assumed to be reverting to her former status of presumptive menstruation while the interruption might be attributed to a mere delay in the appearance of the discharge.
(53) Whose menstrual flow must normally cease and any discharge of blood on whose part, however often that may occur (cf. Tosaf.), can only be regarded as an irregular and passing phase.
(54) For notes on the statements of R. Simeon b. Lakish and R. Johanan cf. those on the statements of Rab and Samuel supra.
(55) Between the Amoras mentioned regarding a pregnant and a nursing woman.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 11a

bleeding profusely it suffices for them, throughout all the days of their pregnancy and throughout all the days of their nursing respectively, to reckon their uncleanness from the time of their observing their flow; so R. Meir. R. Jose and R. Judah and R. Simeon, however, ruled: Only after a first observation did [the Sages] rule that it suffices for them1 to reckon their uncleanness from the time of their observing the flow but after a second observation they cause uncleanness retrospectively for twenty-four hours or from their previous examination to their last examination.

IF, HOWEVER, SHE SUFFERED THE FIRST FLOW etc. R. Huna ruled: If on three occasions she jumped and suffered a flow she2 has thereby established for herself a fixed period.3 In what respect?4 If it be suggested, In respect of certain days,5 could it not be objected that on any day on which she did not jump she observed no flow?6 - Rather, [the fixation meant is in respect] of jumps.7 But surely it was taught: 'Any regular discharge established as a result of an accident, even though it had been repeated many times, does not establish a fixed period'. Does not this mean that no fixed period whatsoever8 is established? - No, it means that no fixed period is established in respect of days alone9 or jumps alone,10 but as regards days and jumps jointly11 a fixed period is well established.12 But 'is it not obvious13 [that no fixed period can be established] in respect of days alone?14 - R. Ashi replied: [This15 was necessary in a case] for instance, where the woman jumped on two Sundays and suffered a flow while on a Sabbath16 she jumped and suffered no flow but on the Sunday following she observed one without jumping. As it might have been presumed that it had now become known retrospectively that17 it was the day18 and not the jumping19 that had caused the flow,20 we were informed21 that it was the jump of the previous day16 'that was the cause22 and that the reason why the woman did not observe it was because the jump was premature.23

Another reading:24 R. Huna' ruled: If on three occasions she jumped and suffered a flow she has thereby established for herself a fixed period in respect of days but not in respect of jumps. In what circumstances?25 - R. Ashi replied: If a woman jumped on two Sundays and on each occasion suffered a flow while26 on one27 Sunday she suffered one without jumping where it is obvious that it is the day28 that is the cause.29

MISHNAH. ALTHOUGH [THE SAGES] HAVE LAID DOWN THAT [FOR A WOMAN WHO HAS A SETTLED PERIOD] IT SUFFICES TO RECKON HER PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM THE TIME SHE OBSERVED THE FLOW, SHE MUST NEVERTHELESS EXAMINE HERSELF [REGULARLY],30 EXCEPT WHERE SHE IS A MENSTRUANT31 OR32 IS CONTINUING IN THE BLOOD OF PURIFICATION.33 SHE34 MUST ALSO USE TESTING-RAGS WHEN35 SHE HAS MARITAL INTERCOURSE EXCEPT WHEN SHE CONTINUES IN THE BLOOD OF PURIFICATION33 OR WHEN SHE IS A VIRGIN36 WHOSE BLOOD IS CLEAN.37 AND TWICE [DAILY] MUST SHE34 EXAMINE HERSELF: IN THE MORNING38 AND AT THE [EVENING] TWILIGHT,39 AND ALSO WHEN SHE IS ABOUT40 TO PERFORM HER MARITAL DUTY.41 PRIESTLY WOMEN ARE SUBJECT TO AN ADDITIONAL RESTRICTION [IN HAVING TO MAKE EXAMINATION] WHEN THEY ARE ABOUT TO EAT TERUMAH. R. JUDAH RULED: [THESE MUST EXAMINE THEMSELVES] ALSO AFTER THEY HAVE CONCLUDED A MEAL42 OF TERUMAH.

GEMARA. EXCEPT WHEN SHE IS A MENSTRUANT, because during the days of her menstruation she needs no examination.43 This44 is quite satisfactory according to R. Simeon b. Lakish who ruled, 'A woman may establish for herself a settled period during the days of her zibah45 but not during the days of her menstruation',46 [since the discarding of an examination would be] well justified.47 According to R. Johanan, however, who ruled, 'A woman may establish for herself a settled period during the days of her menstruation', why should she not examine herself seeing that it is possible that she had established for herself a settled period?48 - R. Johanan can answer you: I only spoke of a case where the woman observed the flow issuing49 from a previously closed source,50 but I did not speak of one where she observed it issuing51 from an already open source.52

OR IS CONTINUING IN THE BLOOD OF PURIFICATION. It was assumed that the reference is to one who is only desirous of continuing in the blood of purification.53 Now this54 is quite satisfactory according to Rab who holds that 'it55 all emanates from the same source which the Torah declared to be unclean [during a certain period]56 and clean [during another period]'57 [since the discarding of an examination would be] well justified;58 but according to Levi who holds that 'it55 emanates from two different sources'59 why should she not examine herself, seeing that it is possible60 that the unclean source had not yet ceased to flow?61 - Levi can answer you: This62 is in agreement with63

____________________
(1) Pregnant and nursing women.
(2) Though a flow resulting from a jump is obviously an accident.
(3) This is explained presently.
(4) Is the period fixed.
(5) I.e., if the jump and resulting flow took place, for instance, on three Sundays, every subsequent Sunday is regarded as the fixed day so that even in the absence of a jump, if on examination she discovered a flow, her uncleanness is not retrospective, while if she failed to examine herself she is deemed to be unclean on the presumption that the flow had appeared at the fixed time.
(6) Which proves that the day itself is not the fixed period. How then could a Sunday on which she does not jump (cf. prev. n.) be regarded as the fixed period?
(7) Sc. on any day she jumped she is presumed to be unclean unless on examination she found herself to be clean.
(8) Even in respect of jumps.
(9) The Sundays, for instance, (cf. supra, p. 69, n. 7) on which she did not jump.
(10) On any day other than a Sunday.
(11) I.e., a Sunday on which she jumped.
(12) If she jumped on any Sunday that day is deemed to be her fixed period.
(13) Since each discharge was preceded by a jump.
(14) The answer being in the affirmative the difficulty arises: What need was there to teach the obvious?
(15) The ruling that no fixed period is established in respect of days alone.
(16) Saturday.
(17) As on the Saturday on which she jumped she suffered no flow while on the Sunday following on which she did not jump she observed one.
(18) The Sunday, since it was the third on which she observed a flow.
(19) Cf. prev. n. but one.
(20) And Sunday might consequently be regarded as her fixed period irrespective of whether she jumped on it or not.
(21) By the ruling under discussion (cf. supra n. 10).
(22) Of the discharge on the Sunday.
(23) Lit., 'the time of jumping had not yet arrived'. Her fixed period, therefore, is only a Sunday (not any other day of the week) on which she jumped (and no Sunday on which she did not jump).
(24) Cf. nn. on first reading supra, mut. mut.
(25) Lit., 'how is this to be imagined?'
(26) Cur. edd. in parenthesis, 'and on the Sabbath (Saturday) she jumped and did not observe (a flow)'. Cf. Elijah Wilna's glosses.
(27) Cur. edd. insert 'another' in parenthesis.
(28) In this case the Sunday.
(29) Of the discharge. Hence the ruling that a fixed period has been established 'in respect of days'.
(30) Morning and evening; in order to make sure that there was no discharge whatsoever.
(31) Who, having suffered a flow, is unclean for seven days irrespective of whether she had a flow or not on any of the last six days.
(32) After a childbirth.
(33) Cf. Lev. XII, 4. The examination would be purposeless since even the appearance of blood would not affect her cleanness.
(34) WHO HAS A FIXED PERIOD.
(35) Before or after.
(36) Newly married
(37) During the first four nights (cf. supra n. 9).
(38) To make sure that the objects she handled during the previous night are clean.
(39) Cf. prev. n. mut. mut.
(40) Lit., 'passes'.
(41) Lit., 'to serve her house'.
(42) Lit., 'at the time of their passing away from eating'.
(43) Cf. relevant n. on our Mishnah.
(44) That no examination is necessary.
(45) I.e., during the eleven days between the periods of menstruation. If, for instance, she suffered a menstrual flow on the first day of two consecutive months and also on the fifteenth day (which is one of the eleven days of zibah) of the same months, while on the first of the third month she had no menstrual flow and on the fifteenth of that month she again observed a flow she (on account of the three observations on the fifteenth) establishes for herself a settled period on the fifteenth of the subsequent months though the first two observations had taken place during the eleven days of zibah.
(46) If, for instance, she suffered a flow on the first and on the fifth day of one month and again on the fifth of the two subsequent months no settled period is thereby established for the fifth of the month, because during menstruation, a woman normally bleeds and a recurrent discharge proves no settled habit.
(47) Lit., 'beautiful', 'right'. Such an examination could serve no useful purpose whatsoever. It cannot serve the purpose of ascertaining whether she is clean (since she is in any case unclean even in the absence of a discharge) and it cannot serve the purpose of enabling her to establish a settled period (since no settled period can be established during the seven days of menstruation).
(48) Cf. prev. n. but one mut. mut.
(49) On each of the three occasions.
(50) If, e.g., the flow made its first appearance (cf. infra 39b) on the first day of three consecutive months as well on the twenty-fifth of the second month. In this case the first day of each subsequent month is regarded as the settled period, because the first two of the three discharges originated from a closed source (there having been no flow before) while the last (though it appeared after the menstruation had begun on the twenty-fifth of the previous months) is also regarded as originating from a closed source since the discharge on the twenty-fifth which originated from a closed source is deemed to be the commencement of the flow on the first of the following month that followed it.
(51) Even on one of the three occasions.
(52) As is the case spoken of in our Mishnah where even the first observation would be made during menstruation where the source is already open.
(53) But had not yet commenced then, i.e., a woman after childbirth who concluded the seven unclean days for a male or the fourteen unclean days for a female (cf. Lev. XII, 1-5).
(54) The ruling that no examination is necessary on the seventh or fourteenth day (cf. prev. n.).
(55) The blood discharged within forty or eighty days respectively after childbirth (cf. Lev. XII, 1-5).
(56) Cf. supra, n. 3.
(57) The thirty-three days after the seven for a male and the sixty-six days after the fourteen for a female (cf. Lev. XII, 4f).
(58) Lit., 'beautiful', 'right'. Such an examination would be purposeless since after the seventh and the fourteenth day respectively the woman would in any case be clean irrespective of whether there was any discharge or not.
(59) The unclean source being open during the first seven and fourteen days respectively and after the forty and eighty days respectively when the clean one is closed, while the latter is open during the thirty-three and sixty-six days respectively when the former is closed.
(60) Where there was a continuous issue from the unclean period into the clean one (cf. infra 35b).
(61) Unless there was an examination and it had been ascertained that there was a definite break in the flow at the end of the seven and the fourteen days respectively the woman might still be unclean even though the unclean period prescribed had passed. Why then should no examination be necessary?
(62) The ruling that the menstruant needs no examination.
(63) Lit., 'whose'.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 11b

Beth Shammai who hold that 'it1 all emanates from the same source'.2 But would the Tanna teach an anonymous Mishnah3 in agreement with the view of Beth Shammai?4 - This is an anonymous ruling that is followed by a divergence of opinion, and wherever an anonymous ruling is followed by a dispute the halachah does not agree with the anonymous ruling. And if you prefer I might reply: Was it stated,5 'desirous of CONTINUING'?6 It was only stated, 'CONTINUING'.7 But if the woman was already 'continuing'7 what was the purpose of stating the ruling?8 - It might have been assumed that she should examine herself in case she establishes for herself9 a settled period, hence we were informed [that no examination is necessary] because no settled period can be established [by the regularity of a discharge from] a clean source for that of an unclean one. This is satisfactory according to Levi who stated that there are two sources,10 but according to Rab who stated that there was only one source10 why should she not examine herself seeing that she might have established for herself9 a settled period? - Even in that case she cannot establish a settled period in the clean days for the unclean ones.

SHE MUST ALSO USE TESTING-RAGS WHEN SHE HAS MARITAL INTERCOURSE etc. We have learnt elsewhere: If a young girl, whose age of menstruation11 had not yet arrived, married, Beth Shammai ruled: She is allowed12 four nights,13 and Beth Hillel ruled: Until the wound is healed.14 R. Giddal citing Samuel stated: They15 learnt this16 only in the case where bleeding through intercourse had not ceased, though she subsequently observed a discharge that may not have been due to intercourse;17 but if bleeding through intercourse had ceased18 and then she observed a discharge19 she20 is unclean.21 If one night has passed without intercourse and then she observed a discharge she is unclean. If the colour of her blood changed22 she is unclean.

R. Jonah raised an objection:23 OR WHEN SHE IS A VIRGIN WHOSE BLOOD IS CLEAN [she need not use testing-rags]. But why should she not rather use testing-rags24 seeing that it is possible that the colour of her blood had changed? - Raba replied, Read the first clause: EXCEPT WHERE SHE IS A MENSTRUANT OR IS CONTINUING IN THE BLOOD OF PURIFICATION, from which it follows that only in those cases no examination is required but that a virgin whose blood is clean does require one.25 But, then, are not the two rulings26 mutually contradictory? - The former27 refers to one who had marital intercourse, where it might well be assumed that the membrum was the cause of the change;28 while the latter29 refers to one who had no marital intercourse.30 So it was also taught: This31 applies only in the case where 'bleeding through intercourse had not ceased, though she subsequently observed a discharge that may not have been due to intercourse, but if bleeding through intercourse had ceased and then she observed a discharge she is unclean. If one night has passed without intercourse and then she observed a discharge she is unclean. If the colour of her blood has changed she is unclean.32

TWICE [DAILY] MUST SHE etc. Rab Judah citing Samuel stated: They learnt this33 only in respect of clean things, but to her husband she is permitted.34 Is not this35 obvious, seeing that we learnt, IN THE MORNING?36 - Rather, if the statement37 was at all made it was in connection with the final clause: AND38 ALSO WHEN SHE IS ABOUT TO PERFORM HER MARITAL DUTY; Rab Judah citing Samuel stated, They learnt this only as regards a woman who was handling clean things, who, since it is necessary that she examine herself39 for the sake of the clean things,40 must also examine herself41 for the sake of her husband, but if a woman was not handling clean things she requires no examination. But what new point does he42 teach us, seeing that we have learnt: All women are in a condition of presumptive cleanness for their husbands?43 - If the ruling were to be derived from the Mishnah43 it might have been presumed that the ruling applied only to a woman who had a settled period but that a woman who had no settled period does require examination.44 But does not our Mishnah45 deal with one who has a settled period?46 - Our Mishnah deals with both one who had a settled period, and one who had no settled period,47 and it is this that was meant,48 that although she had a settled period, since she must be examined for the sake of the clean things she handled she must also be examined for the sake of her husband. But did not Samuel state this49 once, for R. Zera citing R. Abba b. Jeremiah who had it from Samuel stated, 'A woman who had no settled period may not perform marital intercourse before she has examined herself'50 and it has been explained50 to refer to one who was engaged in the handling of clean things?51 - The one statement52 was inferred from the other.53 So it was also taught: This54 applies only to clean things55 but to her husband she is permitted.56 This,57 however, applies only where he left her in a state of presumptive cleanness, but if he left her in one of presumptive uncleanness she remains for ever in her uncleanness until she tells him, 'I am clean'.

____________________
(1) The blood discharged within the forty or eighty days respectively after childbirth (cf. Lev. XII, 1-5).
(2) Infra 35b.
(3) Which, as a rule, represents the halachah.
(4) Whose rulings generally are contrary to the halachah which is in agreement with those of Beth Hillel.
(5) As has been arbitrarily assumed supra.
(6) Certainly not.
(7) Sc. the clean days had already begun.
(8) That no examination is necessary. Is it not obvious that an examination in such circumstances could serve no purpose whatsoever?
(9) During the period of clean days, by a discharge at regular intervals.
(10) Supra 11a.
(11) Lit., 'her time to see'.
(12) After the first intercourse.
(13) In which intercourse with her husband is permitted despite the flow of blood, it being assumed that the flow is not due to menstruation (as is the case with one who married after attaining the age of menstruation) but to the wound that had been caused by the first intercourse.
(14) Keth. 6a. Cf. prev. two nn. mut. mut.
(15) Beth Hillel.
(16) 'Until the wound is healed'.
(17) As intercourse invariably caused the wound to bleed, any discharge of blood before the wound is healed is attributed to the same cause.
(18) Even if only on one occasion.
(19) Irrespective of whether it occurred during intercourse or at any other time.
(20) Since during one intercourse at least there was no bleeding and the wound may consequently be presumed to have been healed.
(21) The discharge being attributed to menstruation.
(22) From that of the blood at the first intercourse.
(23) Against the last ruling, 'If the colour etc.'.
(24) Before and after intercourse.
(25) As R. Jonah expected.
(26) The one referred to by R. Jonah and the inference from the first clause of our Mishnah cited by Raba.
(27) Lit., 'here', the ruling referred to by R. Jonah.
(28) Lit., 'the attendant (euphemism) disturbed them', so that the test after the intercourse would prove nothing: and since no test is to be made after intercourse none is required before it (v. Rashi).
(29) The inference of Raba.
(30) And a change of colour would be a clear indication that the wound is healed and the blood is that of menstruation.
(31) For notes v. those on R. Giddal's statement supra.
(32) For notes v. those on R. Giddal's statement supra.
(33) That there must be an examination (v. our Mishnah).
(34) Even without an examination.
(35) That the ruling had no reference to the woman's permissibility to her husband.
(36) When no marital intercourse is permitted.
(37) Of Samuel, 'They learnt this only etc.'.
(38) She must examine herself.
(39) After intercourse.
(40) It being possible that intercourse was the cause of some menstrual discharge.
(41) Before intercourse.
(42) Samuel, by the statement cited.
(43) Infra 15a.
(44) Hence the necessity for Samuel's ruling that even such a woman requires no examination in respect of her husband.
(45) Which begins, ALTHOUGH . . . A WOMAN WHO HAS A SETTLED PERIOD and to which Samuel referred.
(46) How then could it have been maintained that Samuel applied the law to one who had no settled period?
(47) Since (as has explicitly been stated) the former requires examination it is self-evident that the latter also requires it.
(48) By our Mishnah.
(49) That even a woman who had no settled period need not be examined as far as her husband is concerned unless she was also in the habit of handling clean things.
(50) Infra 12b.
(51) But not to one who was not so engaged.
(52) Cited in the name of Samuel.
(53) Samuel himself having made one statement only.
(54) That examination is required.
(55) Sc. to ascertain whether the things the woman has handled are clean.
(56) Even without an examination.
(57) That to her husband she is permitted even without an examination.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 12a

R. Zera enquired of Rab Judah: Should1 a wife examine herself2 for her husband? - The other replied: She should not examine herself. But [why should she not] examine herself, seeing that none could be the worse for it?3 If [she were to do] so her husband would be uneasy in his mind4 and he would keep away from her.

R. Abba enquired of R. Huna: Must5 a woman examine herself immediately [after intercourse] in order to make her husband liable to a sin-offering?6 The other replied: Is it at all possible for an examination to take place immediately [after intercourse], seeing that it was taught: 'What is meant by "immediately"? This may be illustrated by the parable of an attendant7 and the witness8 who stand at the side of the lintel9 where the witness enters immediately after the attendant goes out, this being the interval which the Rabbis allowed as regards wiping off10 but not as regards examination'?11 - The question rather is whether she must wipe herself.12 Some there are who say that it was this that he13 enquired of him:14 Must a woman examine herself [after intercourse]15 in order to make her husband liable16 to a suspended guilt-offering?17 - The other replied: She should not examine herself. But [why should she not] examine herself, seeing that none could be the worse for it?18 - If [she were to do] so19 her husband would be uncertain in his mind20 and he would keep away from her.

AND ALSO WHEN SHE IS ABOUT etc. R. Ammi citing R. Jannai remarked: And this is the test21 of virtuous women.22 Said R. Abba b. Memel to R. Ammi: The Tanna learnt MUST,23 [how then could] you learn 'virtuous women'?22 - The other replied: Because I maintain that whosoever observes the enactments of the Sages may be described as24 virtuous.25 Said Raba: Would then26 one who does not observe the enactments of the Sages merely lose the designation of27 virtuous man but would not be called wicked? Rather, said Raba, as for virtuous women the testing-rag, with which they have examined themselves before one intercourse, they do not use it before any other intercourse, but those who are not virtuous use it and do not mind.

[Reverting to] the main text,28 'R. Zera citing R. Abba b. Jeremiah who had it from Samuel stated: A woman who has no settled period may not perform marital intercourse before she has examined herself'. Said R. Zera to R. Abba b. Jeremiah: Is it29 only one who has no settled period that must have an examination while a woman who has a settled period requires no examination?30 - The other replied: A woman who has a settled period must have an examination31 only when she is awake32 but not when she is asleep;33 while a woman who has no settled period must have an examination whether she is awake or asleep. Raba observed: Could he34 not reply35 that a woman who had a settled period must be examined36 in respect of clean things37 but not in respect of her husband [alone]38 while a woman who had no settled period must have an examination even in respect of her husband [alone]?39 As, however, he did not give such a reply it may be inferred that Samuel holds the view that in respect of her husband alone38 a woman40 needs no examination.41

Our Rabbis taught: The wives of ass-drivers,42 labourers43 and people coming from a house of mourning43 or a house of feasting44 are in respect of their husbands45 deemed to be in a state of presumptive cleanness and the latter may, therefore, come and stay with them whether they are asleep or awake. This, however, applies only where the men46 left the woman in a state of presumptive cleanness but if they left them in a state of presumptive uncleanness each woman is forever regarded as unclean until she announces to her husband 'I am clean'. But how does Samuel47 explain this case?48 If it refers to a woman who has a settled period, does not a difficulty arise from the case where she is awake?49 And if it refers to one who has no settled period, does not a difficulty arise both from the case where she is awake and from that where she is asleep?50 - As a matter of fact it refers to one who had a settled period51 but52 as the husband had solicited her53 there can be no more reliable54 examination than this.55

R. Papa asked Raba: May one56 act in accordance with that Baraitha?57

____________________
(1) Lit., what is it (the ruling)'.
(2) Before intercourse.
(3) Lit., 'and what is there in it'.
(4) Lit., 'his heart beats him'.
(5) Lit., 'what is it (the ruling)'.
(6) Should any trace of blood be found. If any blood is discovered immediately after intercourse the discharge is presumed to have begun before or during intercourse and the man is liable to a sin-offering (cf. infra 14a.).
(7) Euphemism, 'the membrum'.
(8) The testing-rag. The consonants of the Hebrew equivalent may be rendered 'witness' as well as 'testing-rag'.
(9) Euphemism.
(10) Externally.
(11) Infra 14b; which requires a longer interval. How then could it happen that an examination should be carried out 'immediately'?
(12) Immediately after intercourse, so as to ascertain (cf. supra p. 77, n. 17) whether her husband is liable to a sin-offering.
(13) R. Abba.
(14) R. Huna.
(15) After the lapse of the interval defined supra as 'immediately'.
(16) Should any blood be discovered.
(17) Which is incurred in the case of a doubtful transgression. The discovery of blood (cf. prev. n.) is no proof that the discharge began before or during the intercourse as it may have begun after.
(18) Lit., 'and what is there in it'.
(19) Even if only after intercourse.
(20) Lit., 'his heart beats him'.
(21) Lit., 'their time' or 'testing-rag'.
(22) Ordinary women, however, examine themselves only morning and evening (cf. Mishnah infra 14a).
(23) Implying that every woman is subject to the obligation.
(24) Lit., 'is called'.
(25) Sc. it is the duty of every woman who desires to live in accordance with Rabbinic law to examine herself on each of the occasions specified in our Mishnah.
(26) If R. Ammi's submission is correct.
(27) Lit., 'would not be called'.
(28) Quoted supra 11b ad fin.
(29) Since Samuel spoke only of a woman 'who has no settled period'.
(30) But how could this assumption be upheld in view of our Mishnah which prescribes an examination though it speaks of a woman who had a settled period?
(31) Before intercourse is permitted.
(32) Because (a) as she is then able to handle clean things and would have to be examined for the purpose she must also be examined for the sake of her husband: and (b) an examination when one is awake does not involve undue inconvenience.
(33) When (a) she is unable to handle clean things and (b) an examination would mean much inconvenience (cf. prev. n. mut. mut.).
(34) R. Abba b. Jeremiah.
(35) To R. Zera.
(36) For the sake of her husband also.
(37) Sc. if she handled such objects. As she must be examined on account of the latter she must also be examined on account of the former.
(38) If she handled no clean things.
(39) Sc. even if no clean things had been handled by her.
(40) Even if she has no settled period.
(41) Samuel's statement supra that 'a woman . . . may not . . . before she examined herself' refers, therefore, to one who was engaged in the handling of clean things.
(42) Sc. people whose occupations take them away from their homes for considerable periods.
(43) Cf. prev. n.
(44) Beth ha-mishteh, usually a wedding feast.
(45) When these return home.
(46) On departing.
(47) Who, according to R. Abba b. Jeremiah, holds that (a) one who has a settled period must be examined when awake but not when asleep, while (b) one who has no settled period must be examined even when asleep.
(48) In the Baraitha just cited.
(49) Of course it does. According to this Baraitha no examination is required while according to Samuel (cf. (a) note 6) an examination is required.
(50) In both cases (even when the woman is awake), no examination is expected, while according to Samuel (cf. (b) note 6) an examination must be held even when she is asleep.
(51) Hence the ruling that no examination is necessary when she is asleep (cf. note 6).
(52) In reply to the objection why no examination is required when she is awake.
(53) And she consented.
(54) Lit., 'great'.
(55) Had she not ascertained beforehand that she was clean she would not have consented. Samuel's ruling, however, which ordains an examination applies only to husbands whose occupations do not take them away from their homes, and not to such (of whom the Baraitha speaks) as returned home after a considerable absence (cf. Tosaf. and Tosaf. Asheri).
(56) Lit., 'what is it'.
(57) Of the ass- drivers etc., i.e., (cf. Tosaf. contra Rashi) that no examination is necessary, as far as the husband is concerned, where the woman is half asleep (v. Tosaf, s.v. בין).

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 12b

- The other replied: Brewer,1 no; because [otherwise]2 she would become repulsive to him.

R. Kahana stated, 'I asked the women folk of the house of R. Papa and of R. Huna son of R. Joshua, "Do the Rabbis on coming home from the schoolhouse require you to undergo an examination"? And they answered me in the negative'. But why did he3 not ask4 the Rabbis themselves? - Because it is possible that they imposed additional restrictions upon themselves.5

Our Rabbis taught: A woman who has no settled period is forbidden marital intercourse and is entitled neither to a kethubah6 nor to a usufruct7 nor to maintenance,8 nor to her worn-out clothes.9 Her husband, furthermore, must divorce her and may never marry her again; so R. Meir. R. Hanina b. Antigonus ruled: She must use two testing-rags when she has marital intercourse; they render her unfit10 and they also render her fit.11 In the name of Abba Hanan it was stated: Woe to her husband.12 'She is forbidden marital intercourse', because she might13 cause him moral injury. 'And is entitled neither to a kethubah', since she is unfit for cohabitation she is not entitled to a kethubah. 'Nor to usufruct nor to maintenance nor to her worn-out clothes' because the provisions14 embodied in the agreed terms of a kethubah are subject to the same laws as the kethubah itself.15 'Her husband, furthermore, must divorce her and may never marry her again'. Is not this obvious?16 - It was necessary in the case where she was subsequently cured.17 As it might have been presumed that [in such a case] he may remarry her we were informed [that this is forbidden], because it may sometimes happen that having proceeded to marry another man she would be cured and [her first husband] would then say, 'Had I known that to be the case I would not have divorced her even if you had given me a hundred maneh', and the get would thus be annulled and her children would be bastards.18

'In the name of Abba Hanan it was stated: Woe to her husband'. Some explain: He said this in opposition to R. Meir,19 because [Abba Hanan maintains that] she must be allowed to collect her kethubah. Others there are who explain: He said it in opposition to R. Hanina b. Antigonus,20 because [Abba Hanan maintains that intercourse is always forbidden] since thereby she might21 cause her husband to sin.

Rab Judah citing Samuel stated: The halachah is in agreement with R. Hanina b. Antigonus. But in what case? If it is one where the woman is engaged in the handling of clean things, has not Samuel [it may be objected] said it once?22 And if it is one where she was not engaged in the handling of clean things, did he not say [it may again be objected] that as far as her husband is concerned she requires no examination, for did not R. Zera in fact state in the name of R. Abba b. Jeremiah who had it from Samuel, 'A woman who had no settled period may not perform marital intercourse before she examines herself', and it has been explained to refer to one who was engaged in the handling of clean things?23 - He who taught the one did not teach the other.24 [

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(1) Sodani, reference to R. Papa's occupation. (Cf. B.M. 65a). Aliter: 'Learned' or 'wise man' (v. Rashi).
(2) I.e., (cf. Tosaf.) if it had been necessary for the husband to rouse her and to wait until she has collected her thoughts and was in a condition to reply (contra Rashi).
(3) R. Kahana.
(4) What the law was.
(5) And this could be ascertained only by enquiring from the women. Had the enquiry been addressed to the Rabbis themselves they might have given the lenient ruling which applied to all, while R. Kahana was anxious to adopt any additional restrictions which the Rabbis may have imposed upon themselves.
(6) Sc. the fixed amount that is due to her from her husband on divorce or when he dies (v. Glos.).
(7) Of the melog (v. Glos.) property which she brought to her husband. Her husband is entitled to the usufruct despite the fact that she is deprived of her kethubah.
(8) Sc. if her husband before divorcing her went abroad the court does not authorize her to collect her maintenance expenses from his estate.
(9) Though a woman as a rule is entitled to take with her when divorced whatever is left of the clothes she brought to her husband on marriage as melog property (cf. Keth. 79b).
(10) If any blood is observed on them.
(11) If they remained clean.
(12) This is explained infra.
(13) Should a discharge occur during intercourse.
(14) Such as are the benefits mentioned.
(15) As she cannot claim her kethubah she cannot claim these benefits either.
(16) Why then should an obvious ruling have to be enunciated?
(17) I.e., acquired a settled period.
(18) Hence the ruling that he may never again marry her, even if she subsequently acquired a settled period. On the basis of this ruling the husband is duly cautioned when divorce is arranged that his act is definite and final and, consequently, any subsequent plea of his 'Had I known etc.' has no validity whatsoever (cf. Git. 46a).
(19) Who ruled that she is not entitled to her kethubah from her husband.
(20) Who holds that if she uses testing-rags she may have intercourse.
(21) Were a discharge to occur during intercourse.
(22) Cf. supra 11b ad fin. and infra.
(23) Supra l.c.
(24) It refers indeed to the case where the woman was engaged in handling clean things: but Samuel having given his ruling only once, Rab Judah applied it to the ruling of R. Hanina b. Antigonus, while R. Abba quoted it as an independent ruling.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 13a

CHAPTER 2

MISHNAH. EVERY HAND THAT MAKES FREQUENT EXAMINATION IS IN THE CASE OF WOMEN PRAISEWORTHY,1 BUT IN THE CASE OF MEN IT OUGHT TO BE CUT OFF.2

GEMARA. Wherein [in this respect]3 do women differ from men?4 - Women [in this matter] are not sensitive,5 hence they are praiseworthy,1 but in the case of men who are highly sensitive [their hands] ought to be cut off.2 But, if so,2 what was the point in saying 'MAKES FREQUENT' [seeing that the same reason2 applies] also where [the examinations are] infrequent? - When 'MAKES FREQUENT' was mentioned it was intended to refer to women only.6

One taught: This7 applies only to the emission of semen but as regards flux8 a man also is as praiseworthy as the women;9 and even in regard to the emission of semen, if he desires to make the examination with a splinter or with a potsherd10 he may do so. May he not, however, do it with a rag, seeing that it was taught: A man may examine himself with a rag or with any other thing he wishes? - As Abaye stated elsewhere: 'With a thick rag'.10 so also here11 it may be explained: With a thick rag.10 And in what connection was Abaye's statement made? In connection with the following: If a priest, while eating terumah, felt a shiver run through his body12 he takes hold of his membrum13 and swallows the terumah.14 'Takes hold'! But has it not been taught: R. Eliezer said, 'Whoever holds his membrum when he makes water is as though he had brought a flood on the world'?15 To this Abaye replied. 'With a thick rag'.16 Raba replied: It17 may even be said to apply to a soft rag for once the semen has been detached the subsequent touch does no longer matter.18 And Abaye?19 - He made provision against the possibility of an additional discharge.20 And Raba? - He does not consider the possibility of any additional discharges. But does he not, seeing that it was taught, 'To what may this21 be compared? To the putting of a finger upon the eye where, as long as the finger remains on it, the eye continues to tear'?22 Now Raba?23 - It is quite uncommon for one to get heated twice in immediate succession.24

[Reverting to] the main text: 'R. Eliezer said, Whoever holds his membrum when he makes water is as though he had brought a flood on the world'. But, they said to R. Eliezer, would not the spray bespatter his feet and he would appear to be maimed in his privy parts so that he25 would be the cause of casting upon his children the reflection of being illegitimate? - It is preferable, he answered them, that a man should be the cause of casting upon his children the reflection of being illegitimate than that he should make himself a wicked man, even for a while, before the Omnipresent. Another [Baraitha] taught: R. Eliezer replied to the Sages. It is possible for a man to stand on a raised spot and to make water or to make water in loose earth and thus to avoid making himself wicked, even for a while, before the Omnipresent. Which26 did he27 tell them28 first? If it be suggested that it was the first mentioned statement that he gave them first [is it likely, it may be objected], that after he spoke to them of a prohibition29 he would merely offer a remedy?30 - The fact is that it was the last mentioned statement31 that he gave them first, and when they asked him, 'What is he to do when he can find no raised spot or loose earth', he answered them, 'It is preferable that a man should be the cause of casting upon his children the reflection of being illegitimate than that he should make himself a wicked man, even for a while, before the Omnipresent'.

But why all these precautions?32 - Because otherwise one might emit semen in vain, and R. Johanan stated: Whosoever emits semen in vain deserves death, for it is said in Scripture. And the thing33 which he did33 was evil in the sight of the Lord, and He slew him also.34 R. Isaac and R. Ammi said. He35 is as though he shed blood, for it is said in Scripture. Ye that inflame yourselves among the terebinths, under every leafy tree, that slay the children in the valleys under the clefts of the rocks;36 read not 'that slay'37 but 'that press out'.38 R. Assi said: He39 is like one who worships idols; for here36 it is written, 'Under every leafy tree' and elsewhere40 it is written, upon the high mountains . . . and under every leafy tree.41

Rab Judah and Samuel once stood upon the roof of the Synagogue of Shaf-weyathib42 in Nehardea. Said Rab Judah to Samuel 'I must make water'. 'Shinena',43 the other replied, 'take hold of your membrum44 and make the water outside [the roof]'. But how could he45 do so, seeing that it was taught: R. Eliezer said, Whoever holds his membrum when he makes water is as though he brought a flood on the world? - Abaye replied: He treated this case as that of a reconnoitering troop, concerning which we learnt, 'If a reconnoitering troop has entered a town in time of peace the open wine jars are forbidden46 and the closed ones are permitted,47 but in times of war the former as well as the latter are permitted because the troops have no time to offer libations'.48 Thus it clearly follows that owing to their being in a state of fear they do not think49 of offering libations, and so also in this case, since he45 was in a state of fear he would not think of lustful matters. But what fear could there be here? - If you wish I might reply: The fear of the night and of the roof.50 If you prefer I might reply: The fear of his Master.51 If you prefer I might say: The fear of the Shechinah.52 If you prefer I might say: The fear of the Lord that was53 upon him,54 for Samuel once remarked of him55 'This man is no mortal being'.55 If you prefer I might say: He was a married man, and concerning such R. Nahman ruled, 'If a man was married, this is permitted'. If you prefer I might say: It was this that he taught him, vis., that which R. Abba the son of R. Benjamin b. Hiyya learnt: But he may support the testicles from below. And if you prefer I might say: It was this that he taught them, viz., that which R. Abbahu stated in the name of R. Johanan: It has a limit; from the corona downward [touch] is permitted

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(1) Since both husband and wife are thereby saved either from doubtful uncleanness or from certain transgression.
(2) Because of masturbation.
(3) FREQUENT EXAMINATION.
(4) Sc. why is the hand of the former PRAISEWORTHY while that of the latter OUGHT TO BE CUT OFF?
(5) I.e., the examination does not unduly excite their passions.
(6) Cf. n. 1.
(7) The culpability of men who make such examinations.
(8) I.e., when a man is suffering from gonorrhoea and is desirous of ascertaining the number of attacks he had (v. next n.).
(9) Since it is necessary to ascertain whether the attack occurred only twice or three times. In the former case the man is only unclean while in the latter he must also bring a sacrifice.
(10) Avoiding masturbation.
(11) In the Baraitha just cited.
(12) Lit., 'that his limbs trembled', an indication of the imminent emission of semen.
(13) To restrain the emission. Uncleanness does not set in until the semen has actually left the body.
(14) Infra 40a.
(15) Shab. 41a, infra 43a. The generation of the flood were guilty of such offences (cf. R.H. 12a). Now how, in view of R. Eliezer's statement, could one be allowed to commit an offence even for the sake of terumah?
(16) Avoiding masturbation.
(17) In the Baraitha just cited.
(18) Lit., 'since it was uprooted it was uprooted', no more semen would be emitted despite the heat engendered.
(19) Why, in view of Raba's explanation, does he restrict the application to a thick rag only?
(20) Of semen.
(21) The touching of the membrum after an emission.
(22) Infra 43a. Lit. 'tears and tears again'.
(23) How could he differ from this Baraitha?
(24) Lit., 'any being heated and being heated again in its time'. Hence the ruling in the Mishnah infra 40a. The Baraitha infra 43a, on the other hand, refers to one who practised self-abuse.
(25) Being assumed to be incapable of procreation.
(26) Of the two statements cited.
(27) R. Eliezer.
(28) The Sages.
(29) Which applies in all cases.
(30) Implying that where the remedy is inapplicable the prohibition may be disregarded.
(31) Lit., 'that'.
(32) Lit., 'and all such, why'.
(33) 'He spilled it on the ground' (Gen. XXXVIII, 9).
(34) Gen. XXXVIII, 10.
(35) Who emits semen in vain.
(36) Isa. LVII, 5.
(37) שוחטי.
(38) סוחטי interchange of the sibilants shin and sin.
(39) Who emits semen in vain.
(40) In reference to idolatry.
(41) Deut. XII, 2; an inference by analogy.
(42) The name of a man or place. v. Meg. (Sonc. ed.) p. 175, n. 5.
(43) 'Keen-witted', 'long-toothed' (denoting some facial characteristic) or 'man of iron endurance', cf. B.B. (Sonc. ed.) p. 561, n. 14.
(44) To prevent the water from falling on the roof.
(45) Rab Judah.
(46) Because the troops may have offered them as libation to their idols.
(47) It being assumed that the troops who have at their disposal the open jars would not meddle with the closed ones.
(48) Keth. 27a, A.Z., 70b.
(49) Lit., 'come'.
(50) Standing on its edge in the darkness of the night he is afraid of falling off.
(51) Samuel.
(52) Which abides in the Synagogue.
(53) Always, even when not on a roof or in the darkness of night.
(54) So that no impure thoughts would occur to him even at any other time or place.
(55) Lit., 'born of woman'.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 13b

but from the corona upwards1 it is forbidden.

Rab stated: 'A man who wilfully causes erection should be placed2 under the ban'. But why did he3 not say, 'This is forbidden'? Because the man4 merely incites his evil inclination against himself.5 R. Ammi, however, stated: He4 is called a renegade, because such is the art of the evil inclination: To-day it incites man to do one wrong thing,6 and to-morrow7 it incites him to worship idols and he proceeds to worship them.

There are others who read: R. Ammi8 stated, He who excites himself by lustful thoughts will not be allowed to enter the division of the Holy One, blessed be He. For here it is written, Was evil in the sight of the Lord,9 and elsewhere it is written, For Thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness; evil shall not sojourn with Thee.10

R.11 Eleazar stated: Who are referred to12 in the Scriptural text, Your hands are full of blood?13 Those that commit masturbation with their hands.

It was taught at the school of R. Ishmael, Thou shalt not commit adultery14 implies, Thou shalt not practise masturbation either with hand or with foot.

Our Rabbis taught: 'proselytes and those that play with children delay the advent of the Messiah'. The statement about proselytes may be understood on the lines of the view of R. Helbo, for R. Helbo said, 'proselytes are as hard for Israel to endure as a sore',15 what, however, could be meant by 'those that play with children'?16 If it be suggested: Those that practise pederasty [it could well be objected]: Are not such people subject to stoning?17 If, however, it be suggested: Those that practise onanism through external contact18 [it could be objected]: Are not such deserving destruction by flood?17 - The meaning rather is: Those that marry minors who are not capable of bearing children, for R. Jose19 stated: The Son of David20 will not come before all the souls in Guf21 will have been disposed of, since it is said, For the spirit that enwrappeth itself is from Me, and the souls which I have made.22 BUT IN THE CASE OF MEN IT OUGHT TO BE CUT OFF. The question was raised: Have we here23 learnt a law or merely an execration? 'Have we here learnt a law' as in the case where R. Huna cut off one's hand;24 'or merely an execration'? - Come and hear what was taught: R. Tarfon said, 'If his hand touched the membrum let his hand be cut off upon his belly'. 'But', they said to him,25 'would not his belly be split'? 'It is preferable', he replied, 'that his belly shall be split rather than that he should go down into the pit of destruction'.26 Now if you concede that we have here27 learnt a law28 one can well understand why they said, 'Would not his belly be split'; but if you maintain that we have only learnt of an execration,29 what could be meant by [the question] 'His belly be split'? - What then would you suggest, that we have learnt here a law, would it not suffice, [it may be objected, that the cutting off shall] not be done on his belly? - The fact, however, is that it was this that R. Tarfon meant: Whosoever puts his hand below his belly that hand shall be cut off. They said to R. Tarfon, 'If a thorn stuck in his belly, should he not remove it'? 'No', he replied. 'But [they said] would not his belly be split'?30 'It is preferable', he replied, 'that his belly shall be split rather than that he should go down to the pit of destruction'.26 MISHNAH. IN THE CASE OF A DEAF,31 AN IMBECILE, A BLIND OR AN INSANE32 WOMAN, IF OTHER WOMEN OF SOUND SENSES ARE AVAILABLE33 THEY ATTEND TO HER,34 AND SHE MAY THEN EAT TERUMAH.

GEMARA. Why should not a DEAF woman make her own examination, seeing that it was taught: Rabbi stated, A deaf woman was living in our neighbourhood and not only35 did she examine herself but her friends also on observing a discharge would show it to her?36 - There it was a woman who could speak but not hear while here the reference is to one who can neither speak nor hear; as we have learnt: The deaf person of whom the Sages spoke is always37 one who can neither hear nor speak.38

A BLIND. Why should she not make her own examination and show the testing-rag to her friend? - R. Jose son of R. Hanina replied: The 'blind' is no part of the Mishnah.39

OR AN INSANE WOMAN. Is not this exactly the same as IMBECILE?40 This refers to one whose mind was deranged owing to a disease.

Our Rabbis taught: A priest who is an imbecile may be ritually immersed and then fed with terumah41 in the evening.42 He must also be watched that he does not fall asleep.43 If he falls asleep he is deemed unclean44 and if he does not fall asleep he remains clean. R. Eliezer son of R. Zadok ruled: He should be provided with a leather bag.45 The Rabbis said to him: 'Would not this cause heat all the more'? 'According to your view', he replied, 'should an imbecile have no remedy'? 'According to our view', they retorted, 'only if he falls asleep46 is he deemed unclean but if he does not fall asleep he remains clean, while according to your view there is the possibility that he might discharge a drop of blood of the size of a mustard seed and this would be absorbed in the bag'.47

A Tanna taught: It was stated in the name of R. Eleazar, The imbecile is to be provided with a metal bag. Abaye explained: It must be one of copper, as we have learnt:48 R. Judah ruled, Those buds of hyssop49 are regarded50 as if they had been made of copper.51

R. Papa remarked: From this52 it may be inferred that breeches53 are forbidden. But is it not written in Scripture, And thou shalt make them linen breeches to cover the flesh of their nakedness?54 - That may be explained as it was taught: To what were the breeches of the priests like? They were like the knee breeches of horsemen, reaching upwards to the loins and downwards to the thighs. They also had laces but had no padding either back or front.55 Abaye stated:

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(1) In the direction of the body.
(2) Cf. Tosaf.
(3) Rab.
(4) Who indulges in the reprehensible practice.
(5) The practice, therefore, could only be condemned but not forbidden.
(6) Lit.,'tells him: Do so'.
(7) Lit., 'and on the morrow'.
(8) MS.M., 'Assi'.
(9) Gen. XXXVIII, 10.
(10) Ps. V, 5. analogy between the two expressions of 'evil'. Alfasi (Shab. XIV) inserts, 'R. Eleazar said, What is meant by evil shall not sojourn with thee? The evil (minded) man shall not sojourn in Thy dwelling'.
(11) So MS.M. and Bah. Cur. edd. and Alfasi, 'and R.'
(12) Lit., 'what'.
(13) Isa. I, 15.
(14) Ex. XX, 13.
(15) V. Yeb. 47b.
(16) Who apparently commit no crime at all.
(17) They are; while here they are merely described as delaying the advent of the Messiah.
(18) Lit., 'by way of limbs'.
(19) Var. lec. 'Assi' (Yeb. 62a) 'Joseph' (MS.M.).
(20) The Messiah.
(21) Lit., 'Body', the region inhabited by the souls of the unborn.
(22) Isa. LVII, 16.
(23) In the expression of 'OUGHT TO BE CUT OFF'.
(24) Though the same expression (cf. prev. n.) was used. Sanh. 58b.
(25) Cur. edd. in parenthesis, 'If a thorn stuck in his belly should he not remove it? He said to them: No'.
(26) Gehenna.
(27) In the expression of 'OUGHT TO BE CUT OFF.
(28) So that R. Tarfon's statement is to be taken literally.
(29) The 'cutting off' being a mere figure of speech.
(30) By the thorn.
(31) I.e., deaf-mute (v. Gemara infra).
(32) Lit., 'whose mind was deranged'.
(33) Lit., 'they have'.
(34) Lit., 'they prepare them', i.e., make the necessary examination and supervise the prescribed ritual immersion.
(35) Lit., 'it was not enough'.
(36) Who was an authority on the subject, in order to obtain her opinion on the colour whether it was that of clean or of unclean blood.
(37) Lit., 'in every place'.
(38) Hag. 2b.
(39) It is a spurious addition.
(40) Apparently it is; why then the repetition?
(41) Which is forbidden to an unclean priest.
(42) Since after due immersion one attains to cleanness at nightfall.
(43) In his sleep under his bedclothes heat might be engendered and this would cause him to emit semen which would render him unclean and, therefore, unfit to eat terumah.
(44) Cf. prev. n.
(45) Which can be examined for traces of semen before any terumah is given to him.
(46) After immersion and after nightfall.
(47) Tosef. Nid. II. As it would thus be lost to sight the priest would be regarded as clean and terumah would, as a result, be eaten by one who is in fact unclean; and consequently an offence that is punishable by death (at the hand of God) would unconsciously be committed.
(48) MS.M. and marg. n. Cur. edd., 'as it was taught'.
(49) Used in connection with the water of purification.
(50) When the water is measured to ascertain whether it contained sufficient for a sprinkling (cf. supra 9a).
(51) Parah Xli, 5. Sc. as if they did not absorb any water at all; from which it follows, in support of Abaye's explanation, that copper is a non-absorbent.
(52) The prohibition of a bag supra on account of the heat it engenders.
(53) Such as engender heat, v. infra.
(54) Ex. XXVIII, 42.
(55) Hanging loosely round the organ the breeches could engender no heat.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 14a

Camel riders1 are forbidden to eat terumah.2 So it was also taught: All camel-drivers are wicked,3 all sailors are righteous,4 but among the ass-drivers some are wicked and others righteous. Some say: The latter are those who use a saddle5 and the former are those who use no saddle;6 while others say: The former are those who ride astraddle7 and the latter are those who do not ride astraddle.8

R. Joshua b. Levi cursed the man who sleeps on his back.9 But this, surely, is not correct,10 for did not R. Joseph rule that one lying on his back should not read the shema',11 from which it follows, does it not, that it is only the shema' that he must' not read but that he may well sleep in this manner? - As regards sleeping on one's back this is quite proper if one slightly inclines sideways, but as regards the reading of the shema' even if one inclines sideways this is forbidden.12 But did not R. Johanan turn slightly on his side and read the shema'? - R. Johanan was different [from other people] because he was corpulent.13

MISHNAH. IT IS THE CUSTOM OF THE DAUGHTERS OF ISRAEL WHEN HAVING MARITAL INTERCOURSE TO USE TWO TESTING-RAGS, ONE FOR THE MAN AND THE OTHER FOR HERSELF,14 AND VIRTUOUS WOMEN PREPARE ALSO A THIRD RAG WHEREBY TO MAKE THEMSELVES FIT FOR MARITAL DUTY.15 IF A VESTIGE OF BLOOD IS FOUND ON HIS RAG16 THEY ARE BOTH UNCLEAN17 AND ARE ALSO UNDER THE OBLIGATION OF BRINGING A SACRIFICE.18 IF ANY BLOOD IS FOUND ON HER RAG IMMEDIATELY AFTER THEIR INTERCOURSE THEY ARE BOTH UNCLEAN AND ARE ALSO UNDER THE OBLIGATION OF BRINGING A SACRIFICE. IF, HOWEVER, ANY BLOOD IS FOUND ON HER RAG AFTER A TIME THEY ARE UNCLEAN19 BY REASON OF DOUBT20 BUT EXEMPT FROM THE SACRIFICE. WHAT IS MEANT BY 'AFTER A TIME'? WITHIN AN INTERVAL IN WHICH SHE CAN DESCEND FROM THE BED AND WASH HER FACE.21 BUT [IF BLOOD WAS FOUND SOME TIME] AFTER SUCH AN INTERVAL SHE CAUSES UNCLEANNESS RETROSPECTIVELY22 FOR A PERIOD OF TWENTY-FOUR HOURS23 BUT SHE DOES NOT CAUSE THE MAN WHO HAD INTERCOURSE WITH HER TO BE UNCLEAN.24 R. AKIBA RULED: SHE25 ALSO CAUSES THE MAN WHO HAD INTERCOURSE WITH HER TO BE UNCLEAN.26 THE SAGES, HOWEVER, AGREE WITH R. AKIBA THAT ONE WHO OBSERVED A BLOODSTAIN CONVEYS UNCLEANNESS TO THE MAN WHO HAD INTERCOURSE WITH HER.

GEMARA. But27 why should not the possibility be considered that the blood might be that of a louse?28 - R. Zera replied that place is presumed to be tested as far as a louse is concerned. There are others, however, who reply: It is too narrow for a louse. What is the practical difference between them?29 - The practical difference between them is the case where a crushed louse was found.30 According to the reply31 that the place is presumed to be tested, this must have come from somewhere else,32 but according to the reply31 that the place is too narrow it might be presumed that the attendant33 has crushed it.34

It was stated: If a woman examined herself with a rag that she had previously examined,35 and then she pressed it against her thigh on which she found blood on the following day, Rab ruled: She36 is subject to the uncleanness of a menstruant.37 Said R. Shimi b. Hiyya to him: But, surely, you told us, 'She has only to take the possibility38 into consideration'. It was also stated: Samuel ruled: She is subject to the uncleanness of a menstruant.37 And so they also ruled at the schoolhouse: She is subject to the uncleanness of a menstruant.

It was stated: If a woman examined herself with a rag which she had not previously examined and having put it into a box she found upon it, on the following day, some blood,39 R. Joseph stated: Throughout all his lifetime R. Hiyya regarded [her] as unclean but in his old age he ruled that [she] was clean. The question was raised: What40 does he41 mean: That throughout all his42 lifetime he regarded [her] as menstrually unclean43 and in his old age he ruled that [she] was clean as far as menstruation is concerned but unclean on account of the bloodstain,44 or it is possible that throughout his lifetime he regarded [her] as unclean on account of the stain44 and in his old age he ruled that [she] was absolutely45 clean? - Come and hear what was taught: If a woman examined herself with a rag which she had not previously examined and having put it into a box she found upon it, on the following day, some blood, Rabbi ruled: She is regarded as menstrually unclean,46 and R. Hiyya ruled: She is regarded as unclean on account of the bloodstain.47

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(1) Though priests.
(2) The friction is apt to engender heat resulting in an emission of semen which renders them unclean and therefore unfit to eat terumah.
(3) Cf. prev. n.
(4) Because, though most of their life is spent on the perilous seas, they nevertheless remain constant in their ancestral faith.
(5) When riding. Hence no heat is engendered (v. foll. n.).
(6) Cf. prev. n. Contact with the animal's bare back engenders heat, as in the case of the camel-riders who never use a saddle.
(7) Which is a cause of friction.
(8) Holding both legs on one side.
(9) Since this causes erection.
(10) Lit., 'I am not'.
(11) Cf. P. B., p. 40ff.
(12) One must either sit or lie fully on his side.
(13) It would have been too great a strain for him to lie on his side.
(14) Supra 5a q.v. notes.
(15) By examining themselves before intercourse. On the difference between the practice of the virtuous and that of the ordinary women cf. supra 12a.
(16) Even though he made use of it some considerable time after intercourse.
(17) Since it is obvious that the blood was due to a menstrual discharge during intercourse. As the woman is unclean the man also is unclean (cf. Lev. XV, 24).
(18) For the sin of intercourse during uncleanness.
(19) For seven days.
(20) Anything they touched is, therefore, in a suspended state of uncleanness.
(21) Euphemism.
(22) According to Rabbinic, but not Pentateuchal law.
(23) Both to objects and human beings, their uncleanness lasting until the evening.
(24) For seven days. He is unclean, however, on the same day until evening in accordance with Rabbinic law (cf. prev. two nn.).
(25) On account of the doubt.
(26) For seven days (cf. supra 6a).
(27) With reference to the ruling that IF A VESTIGE OF BLOOD IS FOUND . . . THEY ARE BOTH UNCLEAN . . . AND ARE ALSO UNDER THE OBLIGATION OF BRINGING A SACRIFICE.
(28) As this is not impossible the uncleanness should only be one of a doubtful nature, so that if any terumah is involved it should not be burned but only kept in suspense, and the sacrifice also should be one for doubtful (asham talui) and not one for certain trespass (asham waddai).
(29) The two replies.
(30) On the testing-rag at some distance from the blood mark.
(31) Lit., 'that expression which says'.
(32) The blood must, therefore, be assumed to be that of menstruation.
(33) Euphemism.
(34) During intercourse, and the blood may consequently be attributed to it.
(35) And ascertained that it was clean.
(36) Since the rag was examined by her before use and found to be clean, and the blood that was transferred from it to her thigh must consequently be that of menstruation.
(37) Sc. her uncleanness is definitely established. It is not regarded as one of a doubtful nature despite the possibility that the blood on her thigh may have come from some object other than the rag.
(38) That the blood was that of menstruation.
(39) And it is uncertain whether the blood was that of menstruation or of some other source with which the rag may have come in contact before the woman had used it.
(40) Lit., 'how'.
(41) R. Joseph.
(42) R. Hiyya's.
(43) I.e., certain uncleanness.
(44) I.e., uncleanness of a doubtful nature.
(45) Lit., 'from nothing'.
(46) I.e., certain uncleanness.
(47) I.e., uncleanness of a doubtful nature.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 14b

Said R. Hiyya to him: 'Do you not agree that it1 must be slightly bigger than the size of a bean?'2 'Indeed', the other replied. 'If so',3 the first retorted, 'you also regard it as a stain'.4 Rabbi, however, holds the opinion that it is necessary for the stain to be slightly bigger than the size of a bean in order to exclude the possibility of its being the blood of a louse, but as soon as this possibility is ruled out the blood must undoubtedly have come from her body. Now did not this occur5 when he was in his old age but when he was young he regarded it6 as menstrually unclean?7 This is conclusive.

Rabbi was commending R. Hama b. Bisa to R. Ishmael son of R. Jose as a great man, when the latter said to him, 'If you come across him8 bring him to me'. When he9 came he10 said to him, 'Ask me something'. 'What is the ruling', the other asked, 'if a woman examined herself with a rag which she had not previously examined and having put it into a box she found some blood upon it on the following day?' 'Shall I give you,' the first answered, 'the ruling according to the views of my father11 or shall I rather give it to you according to the views of Rabbi?'12 'Tell me,' the other said, 'the ruling according to Rabbi'. 'Is this the person', R. Ishmael exclaimed, 'of whom it is said that he is a great man! How could one ignore13 the views of the Master14 and listen to those of the disciple?15 R. Hama b. Bisa, however, was of the opinion that since Rabbi was the head of the college and the Rabbis were frequently in his company his traditions were more reliable.16 What is the view of Rabbi [that has just been referred to] and what is that of R. Jose? - R. Adda b. Mattena replied: - A Tanna taught, Rabbi declares her17 unclean and R. Jose declares her clean. In connection with this R. Zera stated: When Rabbi declared her unclean he did so in agreement with the ruling of R. Meir, but when R. Jose declared her clean he did so in accordance with his own view. For we learnt:18 If a woman when attending to her needs19 observed a discharge of blood, R. Meir ruled: If she was standing at the time she is unclean but if she was sitting she is clean. R. Jose ruled: In either case she is regarded as clean.20 Said R. Aha son of Raba to R. Ashi: But did not R. Jose the son of R. Hanina state that when R. Meir ruled that the woman was unclean he did so only on account of the bloodstain,21 whereas Rabbi regarded her as unclean by reason of menstruation?22 - The other replied, What we maintain is this: When that ruling23 was stated it was that the uncleanness was due to menstruation.24

IF ANY BLOOD IS FOUND ON HER RAG IMMEDIATELY AFTER HER INTERCOURSE THEY ARE BOTH UNCLEAN etc. Our Rabbis taught:25 What is meant by 'immediately'? This may be illustrated by the parable of the attendant and the witness who stood at the side of the lintel where the witness enters immediately after the attendant goes out, this being the interval which the Rabbis allowed as regards wiping off,26 but not as regards an examination.27

IF, HOWEVER, ANY BLOOD IS FOUND ON HER RAG AFTER A TIME etc. A Tanna taught: They28 do incur the obligation of bringing a suspensive guilt-offering. But what is the reason of our Tanna?29 - It is essential30 [that the doubt shall be of the same nature as in the case of the consumption of] one piece of two pieces.31

WHAT IS MEANT BY 'AFTER A TIME'? etc. Is not, however, this32 incongruous with the following: What is meant by 'after a time'? R. Eleazar33 son of R. Zadok explained: Within an interval in which34 she can stretch out her hand, put it under the cushion or bolster, take out a testing-rag and make examination with it?35 - R. Hisda replied: By AFTER is meant the interval following this interval.36 But was it not stated in connection with this,37 IF, HOWEVER, ANY BLOOD IS FOUND ON HER RAG AFTER A TIME THEY ARE UNCLEAN, BY REASON OF THE DOUBT BUT EXEMPT FROM THE SACRIFICE. WHAT IS MEANT BY 'AFTER A TIME'? WITHIN AN INTERVAL IN WHICH SHE CAN DESCEND FROM THE BED AND WASH HER FACE?38 - It is this that was implied:39 WHAT IS MEANT BY 'AFTER A TIME'? Within an interval in which she can stretch out her hand, put it under the cushion or bolster, take out a testing-rag and make examination with it; and WITHIN AN INTERVAL IN WHICH SHE CAN DESCEND FROM THE BED AND WASH HER FACE [the question of uncleanness is subject to] a divergence of view between R. Akiba and the Sages. But was it not stated,40 AFTER SUCH AN INTERVAL?41 - It is this that was meant: And this is the interval concerning which R. Akiba and the Sages are at variance.

R. Ashi replied: The former and the latter42 represent the same length of time; when she has the testing-rag in her hand the time IS WITHIN AN INTERVAL IN WHICH SHE CAN DESCEND FROM THE BED AND WASH HER FACE, but if she has not the rag in her hand the time is limited to 'within an interval in which she can stretch out her hand, put it under the cushion or bolster, take out a testing-rag and make examination with it'.

An objection was raised: What is meant by 'after a time'? This question was submitted by R. Eleazar son of R. Zadok to the Sages at Usha when he asked them,

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(1) The bloodmark on the rag.
(2) Lit., 'like a bean and more'. If it is smaller it may be presumed to be that of a louse (cf. infra 58b).
(3) That the stain must be no less than a certain minimum.
(4) Cf. supra n. 2. Had it been regarded as menstrual blood the smallest speck of it would have sufficed to cause certain uncleanness (cf. infra 40a)
(5) Lit., 'he stood'.
(6) In agreement with Rabbi.
(7) Obviously he did, since in his youth he would not have ventured to differ from Rabbi who was his master (Rashi). Aliter: In his youth he would not have addressed Rabbi in the second person (cf. B.B. 158b) but as 'the Master' (Tosaf.).
(8) Lit., 'when he comes to your hand'.
(9) R. Hama.
(10) R. Ishmael.
(11) R. Jose.
(12) These views are stated infra.
(13) Lit., 'put down'.
(14) R. Jose.
(15) Rabbi.
(16) Lit., 'sharpened'.
(17) The woman referred to in R. Bisa's question.
(18) So MS.M. and marg. gl. Cur. edd., 'it was taught'.
(19) Making water.
(20) Mishnah infra 59b q.v. notes.
(21) I.e., doubtful uncleanness.
(22) Certain uncleanness. How then could R. Zera maintain that Rabbi followed the view of R. Meir?
(23) Of R. Jose b. Hanina.
(24) Cf. prev. n. but one mut. mut.
(25) Supra 12a, q.v. notes.
(26) Externally, which takes place instantly after intercourse.
(27) Internally, which must inevitably take place after a longer interval than the one allowed had elapsed. In the former case the uncleanness is certain and the sacrifice incurred is a sin-offering, while in the latter case the uncleanness is of a doubtful nature and the sacrifice incurred is a suspensive guilt-offering.
(28) Husband and wife, contrary to the ruling of the Tanna of our Mishnah that they are EXEMPT FROM THE SACRIFICE.
(29) Cf. prev. n.
(30) If a suspensive guilt-offering is to be incurred.
(31) One of which was e.g., permitted fat and the the other was forbidden fat, and it is not known which of the two pieces the person in question had consumed. Only in such a case of doubt is a suspensive guilt-offering incurred (cf. Ker. 17b). Where, however, the doubt involves only one object or person (as is the case under discussion where only one woman is concerned) no suspensive guilt-offering can be incurred.
(32) The definition of 'AFTER A TIME'
(33) So Bah. Cur. edd. 'Eliezer'.
(34) While still in bed.
(35) This interval (cf. prev. n.) being shorter than the one IN WHICH SHE CAN DESCEND FROM THE BED etc., it follows that, according to this Baraitha, during the longer interval the woman does not convey uncleanness to her husband and is only subject to the lesser restrictions of the twenty-four hours' period of retrospective uncleanness. How then are the two rulings to be reconciled?
(36) Defined in our Baraitha. Lit., 'after the after'. During the interval as defined in the Baraitha both husband and wife are subject to doubtful uncleanness but after that interval, and during the one defined in our Mishnah, the woman, according to the Rabbis, as stated in the next clause of the Mishnah, does not convey any uncleanness to her husband.
(37) The interval defined in our Mishnah.
(38) Which clearly shows, does it not, that during the interval spoken of in our Mishnah the woman does carry uncleanness to her husband?
(39) Sc. some words are missing from our Mishnah and are to be regarded as inserted.
(40) In connection with the dispute between R. Akiba and the Sages.
(41) Sc. after the one defined in our Mishnah; from which it follows that during this interval both agree that the woman does carry uncleanness to her husband.
(42) The interval defined in our Mishnah and the one defined in the Baraitha.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 15a

'Are you perchance of the same opinion as R. Akiba that the woman1 carries uncleanness to the man who had intercourse with her?'2 'We', they answered him, 'have not heard his ruling'.3 'Thus', he said to them, 'did the Sages at Jamnia enunciate the ruling: If the woman did not delay more than the time in which she can descend from the bed and wash her face,4 this5 is regarded as 'within the time limit' and both are unclean on account of the doubt,6 and exempt from bringing a sacrifice but they are subject to the obligation of a suspensive guilt-offering. If she delayed for such a time during which she could descend from the bed and wash her face,7 this8 is regarded as being 'after the time',9 Similarly if she delayed10 for twenty-four hours11 or for a period between her previous and her present examination,12 the man who had intercourse with her is unclean on account of his contact,13 but not on account of his intercourse.14 R. Akiba ruled: He also contracts uncleanness on the ground of his intercourse.15 R. Judah son of R. Johanan b. Zakkai ruled: Her husband may enter the Temple and burn incense.16 Now according to R. Hisda17 one can well see why the Rabbis declare the man clean, but according to R. Ashi18 why do the Rabbis declare him clean? And should you reply that this is a case where she did not have the rag in her hand19 [it could be retorted:] Should not then20 a distinction have been made explicitly between the case where the woman had a rag in her hand and where she had no rag in her hand?21 - This is a difficulty.

'R. Judah son of R. Johanan b. Zakkai ruled: Her husband may enter the Temple and burn incense'. But why should not a prohibition be imposed22 on the ground that the man came in contact with a menstruant during the twenty-four hours of her retrospective uncleanness? - He23 holds the same view as Shammai who ruled: For all women it suffices to reckon their period of uncleanness from the time of their discovering the flow.24 But should not a prohibition be imposed21 on the ground that the man has experienced an emission of semen? - This is a case where his intercourse was not consummated.25

THE SAGES, HOWEVER, AGREE WITH R. AKIBA THAT ONE WHO OBSERVED A BLOODSTAIN. Rab explained: [She conveys UNCLEANNESS] retrospectively and the ruling is that of R. Meir.26 Samuel, however, explained: [She conveys UNCLEANNESS] from now27 onwards and the ruling is that of the Rabbis. 'From now onwards'! Would not this28 be obvious? - It might have been presumed that, since retrospective uncleanness for a period of twenty-four hours is only a Rabbinical measure and the uncleanness of bloodstains at all times29 is also only a Rabbinical measure, as during the twenty-four hours' period a woman does not convey uncleanness to the man who had intercourse with her so also in the case of a stain29 does she not convey uncleanness to the man who had intercourse with her, hence we were informed [that she does convey uncleanness to the man]. Might it not, however, be suggested that the law is so indeed?30 - [No, since] in the former case there is no slaughtered ox in your presence31 but here there is a slaughtered ox in your presence.32 Resh Lakish also explained in the same way33 [that uncleanness is conveyed] retrospectively and that the ruling is that of R. Meir. R. Johanan explained: [The uncleanness is conveyed] from now onwards and the ruling is that of the Rabbis.

MISHNAH. ALL WOMEN ARE IN THE CONDITION OF PRESUMPTIVE CLEANNESS FOR THEIR HUSBANDS.34 FOR THOSE WHO RETURN FROM A JOURNEY THEIR WIVES ARE IN THE CONDITION OF PRESUMPTIVE CLEANNESS.

GEMARA. What need was there35 to state,36 THOSE THAT RETURN FROM A JOURNEY? - It might have been presumed that this37 applies only to a husband who was in the town, since in such a case the woman thinks of her duties38 and duly examines herself, but not to a husband who was not in town since the question of [marital] duty does not occur to her, hence we were informed [that the law applies to the latter case also). Resh Lakish in the name of R. Judah Nesi'ah39 observed: But this40 applies only where the husband came and found her within her usually clean period.41 R. Huna observed: This41 was learnt only of a woman who had no settled period, but if she had a settled period intercourse with her is forbidden.42 Topsy turvy!43 Does not, on the contrary, the reverse stand to reason, since in the case of a woman who has no settled period it might well be assumed that she experienced a discharge, but where she has a settled period [she should be presumed to be clean] since her period was fixed? - Rather, if the statement was at all made it was made in the following terms: R. Huna said, This44 was learnt only in the case of a woman the time of whose settled period had not arrived45 but if that time had arrived45 she is forbidden,42 for he46 is of the opinion that [the laws of] settled periods47 are Pentateuchal. Rabbah b. Bar Hana said: Even if the time of her settled period has arrived she is also permitted,48 for he is of the opinion that [the laws relating to] settled period are only Rabbinical.49 R. Ashi reported thus: R. Huna said,

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(1) For a period of twenty-four hours retrospectively.
(2) This (cf. prev. n.) being the only time limit recognized.
(3) Sc. his time limit. Consequently they could not possibly have adopted it.
(4) Sc. the time elapsed was no longer than that during which she can examine herself while still in bed.
(5) The discovery of a discharge within that space of time (cf. prev. n.).
(6) In agreement with R. Hisda supra.
(7) A period of time which is longer than the former (cf. supra n. 1).
(8) The discharge discovered after the period mentioned (cf. prev. n.).
(9) I.e., 'the interval following this interval' as R. Hisda explained (supra 14b).
(10) Longer than the periods mentioned.
(11) After intercourse.
(12) When the discharge was discovered.
(13) With the woman. Such a contact with a menstruant within the twenty-four hours' period only subjects him to one day's uncleanness until nightfall and the uncleanness is only Rabbinical and of an uncertain character.
(14) With a menstruant; sc. the uncleanness, even in its uncertain character, does not extend over seven days as would have been the case with one who had intercourse with a confirmed menstruant.
(15) Cf. prev. n. mut. mut.
(16) This is explained infra.
(17) Who explained supra that the interval within which SHE CAN DESCEND FROM THE BED is regarded as the 'interval after this interval'.
(18) Who maintained supra that 'the former and the latter represent the same length of time'.
(19) So that after she descended from the bed she spent some more time in taking up the rag.
(20) In order to avoid the possible mistake that even within the shorter interval, when the woman had the rag in her hand, the Rabbis hold the man to be clean.
(21) Of course it should. Since no such distinction, however, is made it is obvious, is it not, that the Rabbis hold the man to be clean even if the discharge was discovered after the interval in which the woman can descend from the bed with the rag in her hand?
(22) Lit., 'and let (the prohibition) be inferred'.
(23) R. Judah.
(24) Supra 2a.
(25) R. Akiba, however, maintains that the first stage of intercourse with a menstruant is regarded as its consummation, and consequently uncleanness is conveyed even in such a case (Rashi).
(26) Who in regard to bloodstains adopts (supra 5a and infra 52b) the more restrictive view.
(27) The time of the discovery of the stain.
(28) That the Rabbis agree she conveys uncleanness after the discovery of a stain (cf. prev. n.).
(29) Even after discovery.
(30) That she does not convey uncleanness to the one who had intercourse with her after the discovery of a bloodstain just as she does not render him unclean retrospectively during the twenty-four hours prior to her having observed a discharge.
(31) Metaphor. Within the twenty-four hours prior to her having observed a discharge.
(32) Sc. the bloodstain had actually been discovered.
(33) As Rab supra.
(34) In respect of intercourse; sc. no examination is required for the purpose. It is necessary only for determining the condition of any clean objects the woman may have handled.
(35) Lit., 'wherefore to me'.
(36) After the ruling in the first clause which applies to all husbands.
(37) The ruling in the first clause.
(38) Lit., 'she throws upon herself' -
(39) The Prince, R. Judah II.
(40) The ruling in the final clause.
(41) I.e., within thirty days after her last observation of a discharge. After the thirty days, since most women have monthly periods, intercourse must be preceded by an examination. (12) That 'within her usually clean period' no examination is required.
(42) Unless there was previous examination.
(43) Lit., 'towards where' or towards the tail' (cf. B.B. (Sonc. ed.) p. 435, n. 17).
(44) That 'within her usually clean period' no examination is required.
(45) During the husband's absence from town.
(46) R. Huna.
(47) Sc. that when the date of a settled period arrives the woman is presumed to be in a state of doubtful uncleanness.
(48) No previous examination being required.
(49) Sc. the Rabbis required a woman to examine herself when the date of her settled period arrives in order to ascertain whether there was a discharge or not. If, however, her husband was out of town and on his return it was unknown to him whether she did or did not examine herself she is not to be regarded as being in a condition of doubtful uncleanness.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 15b

This1 was learnt only of a woman who had no settled period that was determinable by days alone but one that was determinable by both days and leaps, so that since the period depends on some specific act it might well be presumed, that she did not leap and that, therefore, did not observe any discharge. Where, however, she has a settled period that was determinable by the days alone, she must have no intercourse, for he is of the opinion that the restrictions relating to settled periods are Pentateuchal. Rabbah b. Bar Hana ruled: Even if she has a settled period that was determined by the days alone, she is permitted intercourse, for he holds the opinion that [the restrictions relating to] settled periods are only Rabbinical.

R. Samuel citing R. Johanan ruled: If a woman has a settled period, her husband2 may3 calculate the days of that period and4 come in unto her.5 Said R. Samuel b. Yeba to R. Abba: Did R. Johanan refer also to a young wife who6 is too shy to perform immersion? - The other replied: Did then R. Johanan speak of one who had actually7 observed a discharge? It may [in fact be held] that R. Johanan spoke8 only of a case where it is doubtful whether or not the woman did observe a discharge and where, [so that] even if some reason could be found for assuming that she did observe one, it may also be assumed that she had since performed immersions,9 but in a case where it is certain that she had observed a discharge, who could say that she had since performed immersion? And, seeing that it is a question of a doubt10 being opposed by a certainty11 [she must be deemed unclean] since a doubt cannot take one out of a certainty. But does it not? Was it not in fact taught: If a haber12 died and left a store-room full of fruits, even if they were only then due to be tithed,13 they are presumed to have been properly prepared.14 Now here it is a case of certain tebel15 and there is only the doubt as to whether or not it was tithed, and the doubt nevertheless sets aside the certainty? - No, there it is a case of a certainty against a certainty, in agreement with a statement of R. Hanina of Hozae,16 for R. Hanina of Hozae said: It is presumed with a haber that he does not allow anything to pass out of his control unless it has been duly prepared. And if you prefer I might say: It is a case of doubt against doubt, since [the man might have acted] in accordance with a suggestion of R. Oshaia, for R. Oshaia said: A man17 may resort to a device with his produce and store it18 together with its chaff19 so that20 his cattle may eat of it21 and it is exempt from the tithe.22

But does not a doubt set aside a certainty? Surely it has been taught: It once happened that the handmaid of a certain tax-collector in Rimmon23 threw the body of a premature child into a pit, and a priest24 came and gazed into it to ascertain whether it was male or female,25 and when the matter came before the Sages26 they pronounced him clean because weasels and martens are commonly found there.27 Now here, surely, it is a certainty that the woman had thrown a premature child into the pit and a doubt whether they had dragged it away or not, and yet does not the doubt set aside the certainty? - Do not read, 'Threw the body of a premature child into a pit' but

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(1) That the woman is presumed to be clean even if the date of her settled period had already arrived.
(2) Having been out of town for seven days after that period.
(3) On returning home during the days in which she had the opportunity of performing immersion and attain cleanness.
(4) Without asking her whether she had made use of her opportunity (cf. prev. n.).
(5) On the assumption that she had duly performed immersion and is now clean.
(6) Unless urged by her husband.
(7) Lit., 'certainly'.
(8) That the woman need not be asked.
(9) And since R. Johanan's ruling is based on the existence of these doubts there can be no distinction between a younger and an older woman.
(10) As to whether there was immersion in consequence of which she would be clean.
(11) Of a discharge which renders her unclean.
(12) V. Glos.
(13) Lit., 'sons of their day'.
(14) A.Z. 41b; i.e., that the priestly and levitical dues have been duly set aside for them.
(15) V. Glos. Since the fruit had reached a stage when it was liable to the dues (cf. prev. n.).
(16) A district on the eastern side of the Tigris.
(17) Desirous of avoiding tithes.
(18) Lit., 'and brings it in'.
(19) Only corn that had been winnowed before it was brought into the store-room within the house is liable to tithe.
(20) Since it was brought in unwinnowed (cf. prev. n.).
(21) Even after its subsequent winnowing. A human being, though permitted to eat it in accordance with Pentateuchal law, may not do so in accordance with a Rabbinic measure.
(22) Even Rabbinically. Now since it is possible that the produce was taken to the store-room in accordance with R. Oshaia's suggestion (a case of doubtful tebel) and it is also possible that it had been duly tithed, we have here a case of doubt against doubt. As a haber is presumed not to allow anything to pass out of his hand unless it had been duly prepared the Rabbis in this case waived aside their restriction and allowed a human being also to eat of the produce.
(23) A town near Jerusalem.
(24) Who was ignorant of the laws of uncleanness (cf. Rashi's fourth interpretation and Tosaf.) and unaware that by bending over the pit just above the embryo he would contract uncleanness.
(25) The period of a woman's uncleanness after childbirth is twice as long in the case of the latter as in that of the former (cf. Lev. XII, 2ff).
(26) To decide whether the priest contracted uncleanness by bending over the pit and thus 'overshadowing' the dead body.
(27) In pits. Tosef. Oh. XVI. These creatures might be presumed to have devoured or dragged away the body so that there was no 'overshadowing' on the part of the priest.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 16a

'a kind of premature child'.1 But was it not stated, 'To ascertain whether it was male or female'?2 - It is this that was meant: And a priest came and gazed into it to ascertain whether she had aborted an inflated object or a premature child and, if some ground could be found for assuming that she aborted a premature child, to ascertain whether it was male or female. And if you prefer I might reply: Since weasels and martens are commonly found there they had certainly dragged it away.3

An enquiry was addressed to4 R. Nahman: [Is the examination at] regular menstrual periods Pentateuchal5 or only Rabbinical?6 The latter replied: Since our colleague Huna citing Rab ruled, If a woman who has a settled period did not make an examination when that period arrived but later on7 observed a discharge, she must take into consideration the possibility [of a discharge] on the date of the settled period,8 and also the possibility of [twenty-four hours retrospective uncleanness] on account of her observation.9 Thus10 it clearly follows that [the examination at] regular menstrual periods is Pentateuchal. There are others who say that he11 replied thus: The reason then12 is that she had 'observed a discharge,'13 but if she had not observed one the possibility14 need not be taken into consideration. Thus15 it follows clearly that [the examination at] regular menstrual periods is only Rabbinical.

It was stated: If a woman had a settled period, and when the time of that period arrived she did not make the examination and later she did make one, Rab ruled: If on examination she found that she was unclean she is unclean but if she found that she was clean she remains clean. Samuel, however, ruled, Even if on examination she found herself clean she is deemed unclean, since the guest16 comes at the usual time. Must it be assumed that they17 differ on [the question of the necessity for an examination at] regular menstrual periods, one Master18 holding that it is Pentateuchal19 and the other Master20 maintaining that it is only Rabbinical?21 R. Zera replied: Both17 may agree that22 [the examination at] regular menstrual periods is Pentateuchal, but23 one ruling24 refers to a woman who examined herself within the period of the duration of her menstruation25 while the other26 refers to a woman who did not examine herself within the period of the duration of her menstruation.27 R. Nahman b. Isaac maintained: They17 differ on the very question of [the necessity for an examination at] the regular menstrual periods, one Master28 holding that it is Pentateuchal29 while the other Master30 maintains that it is only Rabbinical.

R. Shesheth observed: [The discussion here] is analogous to that of the following Tannas: [For it was taught:] R. Eliezer31 ruled, She32 is to be regarded as menstrually unclean,33 while R. Joshua34 ruled: Let her be examined.35 And these Tannas36 differ on the same principle as the following Tannas. For it was taught: R. Meir ruled, She37 is to be regarded as menstrually unclean,38 while the Sages34 ruled, Let her be examined.35 Abaye observed, We also learnt to the same effect. For we learnt: R. Meir ruled, If a woman was in a hiding place39 when the time of her regular period arrived and she did not examine herself, she is nevertheless clean, because fear suspends the menstrual flow.40 The reason then41 is that there was fear, but if there had been no fear she would have been deemed unclean. Thus it clearly follows [that the necessity for an examination at] regular periods is Pentateuchal. May it be assumed that the following Tannas also differ on the same principle? For it was taught: If a woman observed some blood [that might be] due to a wound,42 even if this occurred during her usual period of menstruation, she is deemed to be clean;43 so R. Simeon b. Gamaliel. Rabbi ruled: If she has a regular period44 she45 must take her period into consideration.46 Now do they not differ on this principle, one Master47 holding that [the examinations at] the regular periods are Pentateuchal, while the other Master48 holds that they are only Rabbinical? - Rabina replied: No; both may agree that [the examinations at] the regular periods are only Rabbinical, but it is on the question whether the interior of the uterus is unclean49 that they differ. R. Simeon b. Gamaliel holds that the woman is clean50 but the blood51 is unclean because it comes through the uterus,52 and Rabbi53 in effect said to him: If54 you take into consideration the possibility of her usual menstrual flow, the woman also should be unclean,55 and if56 you do not take into consideration the possibility of her usual menstrual flow, [the blood also should be clean since] the interior of the uterus57 is clean. MISHNAH. BETH SHAMMAI RULED: A WOMAN NEEDS TWO58 TESTING-RAGS FOR EVERY INTERCOURSE,59 OR SHE MUST PERFORM IT IN THE LIGHT OF A LAMP.60 BETH HILLEL RULED: TWO TESTING-RAGS61 SUFFICE HER FOR THE WHOLE NIGHT.62 [

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(1) Sc. it was not certain whether it was a child at all. Hence it is here also a case of doubt against doubt.
(2) Implying that it was definitely a child and that the only doubt was as to its sex.
(3) Hence it is a case of a certainty against a certainty.
(4) Var. lec., 'Raba enquired of' (MS.M. and Asheri).
(5) So that if a woman failed to make the examination at the proper time she is deemed to be unclean (on the ground that the discharge had appeared at its usual time) even though she observed no blood when she examined herself some time later (since it might have dropped on the ground and been lost).
(6) Hence if she failed to make the examination at the proper time she is regarded as clean.
(7) Sc. at the first examination after the settled period.
(8) If it was due prior to the period of twenty-four hours immediately preceding the observation. Her uncleanness in such a case extends backward to the time of the settled period.
(9) If less than twenty-four hours intervened between the time of the settled period and the observation.
(10) Since the possibility of a discharge at the time of the settled period is taken into consideration presumably even where no subsequent discharge had been observed. It is now assumed that 'discharge' was mentioned only on account of the second clause, 'the possibility . . . on account of her observation'.
(11) R. Nahman.
(12) Why 'she must take into consideration . . . the date of the settled period'.
(13) It being assumed that as she discovered a discharge on examination she might also have discovered one if she had made an examination at the time of her settled period.
(14) Cf. prev. n. but one.
(15) Since in the absence of an examination she is regarded as clean.
(16) Euphemism, sc. the regular menstrual discharge.
(17) Rab and Samuel.
(18) Samuel.
(19) Hence the woman's uncleanness in the absence of one.
(20) Rab.
(21) Cf. prev. n. but one mut. mut. But how could this be reconciled with the first version of R. Nahman supra according to which Rab is of the opinion that the examination is Pentateuchal?
(22) Lit., 'that all the world'.
(23) As to the difficulty raised (v. supra n. 11).
(24) The last cited.
(25) As she nevertheless discovered no discharge, it may safely be assumed that there was none even earlier when the regular menstruation period had begun.
(26) The first version of R. Nahman.
(27) But did so later on. As it is quite likely that earlier, during the period of menstruation, there was a discharge, the woman must well be deemed unclean. An old ed. inserts here: 'And there are others who say that one Master spoke of one particular case and the other spoke of another particular case and there is in fact no difference of opinion between them' (v. Maharsha and marginal gloss).
(28) Samuel.
(29) Hence the woman's uncleanness in the absence of one.
(30) Rab.
(31) Maintaining that the examination is Pentateuchal.
(32) A woman who failed to make the examination at the time of her regular period.
(33) From the time her regular period was due to commence.
(34) Holding that the examination is only Rabbinical.
(35) Even though her period of menstruation had passed. If on examination she finds herself to be clean she is regarded as clean (despite the possibility of an earlier discharge) and if she finds herself unclean, the uncleanness is retrospective from the time her settled period was due.
(36) R. Eliezer and R. Joshua.
(37) A woman who failed to make the examination at the time of her regular period.
(38) From the time her regular period was due to commence.
(39) Sheltering from robbers or raiders.
(40) Infra 39a.
(41) Why she is regarded as clean.
(42) In her womb.
(43) The blood being attributed to the wound.
(44) If she has no regular period Rabbi, for the reason given in prev. n., agrees with R. Simeon b. Gamaliel.
(45) If the blood was observed on the day the period was due to commence.
(46) Sc. she is regarded as unclean, since it is possible that some particle of menstrual blood was mixed up with that of the wound.
(47) Rabbi.
(48) R. Simeon b. Gamaliel.
(49) Lit. 'as to the source, the place thereof is unclean'. And, therefore, capable of imparting uncleanness to any clean blood that passes through it.
(50) Sc. she is not subject to the major uncleanness of menstruation which extends over seven days.
(51) Though coming from a wound.
(52) Where it contracts an uncleanness (a 'father of uncleanness') which causes it to impart a one day's uncleanness to a human being, so that any object touched by the woman on that day becomes unclean.
(53) Relaxing the law.
(54) By regarding the blood as unclean.
(55) For seven days, as any other menstruant.
(56) Since you exempt the woman from menstrual uncleanness.
(57) Lit., 'the source of its place'.
(58) Previously unused.
(59) One is used before, and the other after and both are preserved until the morning when they are to be examined in daylight.
(60) So that the testing-rag may be immediately examined.
(61) One of which is used prior to the first intercourse and the other after the last.
(62) This being sufficient to determine whether she is menstrually unclean and whether she is to convey uncleanness to any clean object she may have handled. (So Rashi; cf., however, Tosaf. and Tosaf. Asheri for a different interpretation.)

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 16b

GEMARA. Our Rabbis taught: Although [the Sages] have said, 'He who has intercourse in the light of a lamp is contemptible',1 Beth Shammai ruled: A woman needs two2 testing-rags for every intercourse3 or she must perform it in the light of a lamp, but Beth Hillel ruled: Two testing-rags suffice for her for the whole night.

It was taught: Beth Shammai said to Beth Hillel, 'According to your view4 is there no need to provide against the possibility that she might emit5 a drop of blood of the size of a mustard seed in the course of the first act and this would be covered up with semen during the second act?'6 'But', replied Beth Hillel, even according to your view7 is there no need to provide against the possibility that the spittle,8 while still in the mouth,9 was crushed out of existence?'10 '[We maintain our view,] the former retorted, 'because what is crushed once is not the same as that which is crushed twice'.

It was taught: R. Joshua stated, 'I approve5 of the view of Beth Shammai'.7 'Master', said his disciples to him, 'what an extension [of the restrictions] you have imposed upon us!' 'It is a good thing', he replied, 'that I should impose extensive restrictions upon you in this world in order that your days may be prolonged in the world to come.

R. Zera remarked: From the words of all these authorities11 we may infer12 that a conscientious man should not indulge in intercourse twice in succession.13 Raba said: One may indulge in intercourse twice in succession, for that ruling14 was taught only in respect of clean objects.15 So it was also taught: This16 applies only to clean objects15 but to her husband she is permitted.17 This,18 however, applies only where he had left her in a state of presumptive cleanness, but if he left her in a state of presumptive uncleanness she is presumed to be in that state forever until she tells him, 'I am clean'.

R. Abba citing R. Hiyya b. Ashi who had it from Rab ruled: If a woman19 examined herself with a testing-rag which was subsequently lost she is forbidden intercourse until she had reexamined herself. R. Ela demurred: If it had not been lost20 would she not21 have been allowed intercourse even though she is unaware [whether there was or there was not a discharge], why then should she not now also22 be allowed intercourse? - Raba replied: In the former case her proof is in existence,23 but in the latter case22 her proof is not in existence.24

R. Johanan stated: It is forbidden to perform one's marital duty in the day-time.25 What is the Scriptural proof? That it is said, Let the day perish wherein I was born, and the night wherein it was said: 'A man-child is brought forth'.26 The night is thus set aside27 for conception but the day is not set aside for conception. Resh Lakish stated: [The proof is] from here: But he that despiseth His ways28 shall die.29 As to Resh Lakish, how does he expound R. Johanan's text?26 - He requires it for the same exposition as that made by R. Hanina b. Papa. For R. Hanina b. Papa made the following exposition: The name of the angel who is in charge of conception is 'Night', and he takes up a drop and places it in the presence of the Holy One, blessed be He, saying, 'Sovereign of the universe, what shall be the fate of this drop? Shall it produce a strong man or a weak man, a wise man or a fool, a rich man or a poor man?' Whereas 'wicked man' or 'righteous one' he does not mention, in agreement with the view of R. Hanina. For R. Hanina stated: Everything is in the hands of heaven except the fear of God, as it is said, And now, Israel, what doth the Lord thy God require of thee, but to fear etc.30 And R. Johanan?31 - If that were the only meaning,32 Scripture should have written,33 'A man-child is brought forth'34 why then was it stated, 'was brought forth a man-child'?35 To indicate that the night36 is set aside for conception36 but the day is not set aside for conception. As to R. Johanan how does he expound the text of Resh Lakish?29 - He requires it for [an application to the same types] as those described in the Book of Ben Sira:37 'There are three [types] that I hate, yea, four that I do not love: A Scholar38 who frequents wine-shops39 [or, as others say, a scholar that is a gossip],40 a person who sets up a college in the high parts of a town,41 one who holds the membrum when making water and one who enters his friend's house suddenly'.42 R. Johanan observed:43 Even his own house.

R. Simeon b. Yohai observed: There are four [types]44 which the Holy One, blessed be He, hates, and as for me, I do not love them: The man who enters his house suddenly and much more so [if he so enters] his friend's house, the man who holds the membrum when he makes water,

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(1) The reason is given infra.
(2) Previously unused.
(3) V. supra p. 108, n. 16.
(4) That there is no need for a testing-rag after every act.
(5) Lit., 'see'.
(6) So that the test after that act would not reveal it.
(7) That testing-rags must be used after each act.
(8) Sc. a drop of blood.
(9) Euphemism; the uterus; i.e., during the first intercourse.
(10) So that the test after that act would not reveal it.
(11) Lit., 'all of them', even Beth Hillel who requires only one test after the last act.
(12) Since intercourse is presumed lo be the possible cause of a discharge.
(13) If there was no examination after the first act.
(14) That each or, at least, the last intercourse must be followed by an examination.
(15) Sc. to make sure that the woman did not convey to them uncleanness when handling them. As regards intercourse, however, when a woman is in a presumptive state of cleanness no examination is necessary.
(16) That each or, at least, the last intercourse must be followed by an examination.
(17) Even in the absence of an examination.
(18) That as regards her husband no examination is required.
(19) At night, before intercourse.
(20) Lit., 'it is'.
(21) Since the examination of the rags, according to Beth Hillel, is never to take place before the following morning and, even according to Beth Shammai, no lamp is required at night and the examination is equally postponed until the morning whenever two rags are used for each act.
(22) Where the rag is lost.
(23) And it may well be examined in the morning to ascertain, regarding clean objects the woman had handled, whether she is clean or unclean. As regards intercourse too, should it be found that her uncleanness began prior to the act, she could bring a sin-offering.
(24) Were intercourse to be allowed in such a case there would be no possible means of ascertaining the condition of the woman any more than if there had been no examination at all. Hence Rab's prohibition.
(25) Cur. edd. insert in parenthesis, 'said R. Hamnuna. MS.M. reads for 'Hamnuna' 'Huna'.
(26) Job III, 3.
(27) Lit., 'given'.
(28) Sc. has intercourse at an improper time.
(29) Prov. XIX, 16.
(30) Deut. X, 12.
(31) Since Job III, 3 is required for the exposition of R. Hanina, whence does he derive his rulings?
(32) Lit., 'if so'.
(33) As E.V. in fact renders the Heb.
(34) Sc. the word gaber (male-child) should have preceded horoh (brought forth).
(35) Horoh (cf. prev. n.) preceding gaber and thus standing close to the word 'night'.
(36) Cf. prev. n.
(37) Cf. Ecclesiasticus XXI, 23.
(38) Lit., 'chief'.
(39) Lit., 'a house of drinkings'.
(40) Cur. edd. in parenthesis insert 'and others say, an excitable scholar'.
(41) A manifestation of arrogance.
(42) It was to types like these that Prov. XIX, 16 alluded.
(43) Not only 'his friend's house'.
(44) Lit., 'things'.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 17a

the man who when naked makes water in front of his bed, and the man who has intercourse in the presence of any living creature. 'Even', said Rab Judah to Samuel, 'in the presence of mice?' 'Shinena',1 the other replied, 'no; but [the reference is to] a house like that of So and so where they have intercourse in the presence of their men-servants and maidservants.2 But what was the exposition they made? - Abide ye here with3 the ass,4 implies: peoples that are like an ass. Rabbah son of R. Huna used to chase away the wasps from his curtained bed.5 Abaye drove away the flies.6 Rabba7 chased away the mosquitoes.6

R. Simeon b. Yohai stated, There are five things which [cause the man] who does them to forfeit his life and his blood is upon his own head: Eating8 peeled garlic, a peeled onion or a peeled egg, or drinking diluted liquids that9 were kept over night; spending a night in a graveyard; removing one's nails and throwing them away in a public thoroughfare; and blood-letting followed immediately by intercourse.

'Eating peeled garlic etc.' Even though they are deposited in a basket and tied up and sealed, an evil spirit rests upon them. This, however, has been said only where their roots or peel did not remain10 with them, but if their roots or peel remained with them there can be no objection.11 'And drinking diluted liquids that were kept over night'. Rab Judah citing Samuel explained: This applies only where they were kept over night in a metal vessel. R. Papa stated: Vessels made of alum crystals are the same in this respect as vessels made of metal. So also said R. Johanan: This applies only where they were kept in a metal vessel; and vessels made of alum crystals are the same in this respect as vessels made of metal.

'Spending a night in a graveyard', in order that a spirit of uncleanness may rest upon him.12 [This should not be done] since in consequence he might sometimes be exposed to danger.

'Removing one's nails and throwing them away in a public thoroughfare'. [This is dangerous] because a pregnant woman passing over them would miscarry. This, however, has been said only of a case where one removes them with a pair of scissors. Furthermore, this has been said only of a case where one removes the nails of both hands and feet. Furthermore, this has been said only in the case where one did not cut anything immediately after cutting them but if something was cut immediately after they were cut there can be no danger.13 This, however, is not [to be relied upon]. One should be on his guard in all the cases mentioned.14

Our Rabbis taught: Three things have been said about the disposal of nails: He who burns them is a pious man, he who buries them is a righteous man, and he who throws them away is a wicked man.15

'And blood-letting followed immediately by intercourse'. [This should be avoided] because a Master said: If a man has intercourse immediately after being bled, he will have feeble16 children; and if intercourse took place after both husband and wife have been bled, they will have children afflicted with ra'athan.17 Rab18 stated: This has been said only in the case where nothing was tasted after the bleeding but if something was tasted after it there can be no harm.19

R. Hisda ruled: A man is forbidden to perform his marital duty in the day-time, for it is said, But thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.20 But what is the proof? - Abaye replied: He might observe something repulsive in her and she would thereby become loathsome to him.

R. Huna said, Israel are holy and do not perform their marital duties in the day-time. Raba said, But in21 a dark house this is permitted; and a scholar22 may darken a room with his cloak and perform his marital duty. [But] we have learnt, OR SHE MUST PERFORM IT IN THE LIGHT OF A LAMP? - Read: SHE MUST examine IT IN THE LIGHT OF A LAMP.

Come and hear: Although [the Sages] have said, He who has intercourse in the light of a lamp is loathsome [etc.]?23 - Read: He who examines his bed24 in the light of a lamp is loathsome.25

Come and hear: And the people of the house of Monobaz26 did three things, and on account of these they were honourably mentioned: They performed their marital duties in the day-time, they examined their beds with cotton,27 and they observed the rules of uncleanness and cleanness in the case of snow. At all events, was it not here stated, 'They performed their marital duties in the day-time'? Read: They examined their beds in the day-time. This may also be supported by logical argument. For if one were to imagine [that the reading is] 'performed their marital duties', would they have been 'honourably mentioned'? - Yes, indeed;28 because owing to the prevalence29 of sleep30 she is likely to become repulsive to him.

'They examined their beds with cotton.' This provides support for a ruling of Samuel. For Samuel ruled: The bed31 may be examined only with cotton tufts or with clean and soft wool. Rab observed: This explains what they said in Palestine32 on Sabbath eves,33 when I was there, 'Who requires cotton tufts for his bread',31 and I did not understand at the time what they meant.

Raba stated: Old flax garments are admirably suited for examination purposes. But can this be correct,34 seeing that the school of Manasseh taught: The bed31 may not be examined either with a red rag or with a black one or with flax,35 but only with cotton tufts or with clean and soft wool?36 This is no difficulty, since the latter refers to flax while the former refers to garments of flax. And if you prefer I might reply: Both refer to garments of flax but the latter deals with new ones while the former deals with old ones.37

'They observed the rules of uncleanness and cleanness in the case of snow.' We learnt elsewhere: Snow is neither a food nor a drink. Though one intended to use it as food it is not subject to the laws of the uncleanness of foodstuffs,38 [but if one intended to use it] as a drink it is subject to the laws of the uncleanness of drinks. If a part of it contracted uncleanness all of it does not become unclean,39 but if a part of it became clean40 all of it becomes clean. Now is not this self contradictory? You first said, 'If a part of it contracted uncleanness all of it does not become unclean', and then you said, 'If a part of it became clean all of it becomes clean', which implies, does it not, that all of it was previously unclean?41 - Abaye replied: This is a case, for instance, where it42 was carried across the air-space of an oven,43 [in which case all the snow is unclean] because the Torah testified concerning an earthen vessel44 that

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(1) Cf. n. supra 13a.
(2) Who were heathens.
(3) The Heb. equivalent may be read both 'im (with) and 'am (a people).
(4) Gen. XXII, 5.
(5) So Aruch. V. Tosaf. contra Rashi.
(6) So that no living creature should be near.
(7) Var. lec. 'R. Papa' (MS.M and 'En Jacob).
(8) Lit., 'he who eats'.
(9) The adjectival clause qualifies all the foodstuffs mentioned.
(10) Lit., 'he did not leave'.
(11) Lit., 'we have nothing against it'.
(12) 'To enable him to foretell the future', cf. Sanh. (Sonc. ed.) p. 446.
(13) Lit., 'we have nothing against it'.
(14) Lit., 'we fear for all the thing'.
(15) V. M.K. 18a.
(16) Or 'nervous'.
(17) Ra'athan is one of the skin diseases causing extreme debility and nervous trembling. Cf. Keth. (Sonc. ed.) p. 486f.
(18) The parallel passage in Keth. 77b has 'R. Papa'.
(19) Lit., 'we have nothing against it'.
(20) Lev. XIX, 18.
(21) Lit., 'and if there was'.
(22) Who may be relied upon properly to darken the place.
(23) V. supra 16b. Emphasis on the last word, implying that there is no actual prohibition.
(24) Euphemism.
(25) Since no proper examination can be made in its dim light.
(26) King of Adiabene, whose family embraced Judaism.
(27) Or 'clean and soft wool', on which the smallest particle of blood could be detected. Lit., 'wool of Parhaba' (Probably a geographical name), v. Jast.
(28) Lit., 'thus also'.
(29) In the night-time.
(30) Which numbs the passions.
(31) Euphemism.
(32) Lit., 'there'.
(33) Fridays. Friday night is the time appointed for scholars.
(34) Lit., 'I am not'.
(35) Which is not white enough to show up a small speck of blood.
(36) An objection against Raba.
(37) The more they are washed the more suitable they are for the purpose.
(38) Since it is more like a drink than a food.
(39) Because each particle of snow is regarded as a separate entity; and only that entity that had directly been touched by the unclean object contracts the uncleanness.
(40) By coming in contact with the water of a ritual bath (v. Bez. 17b).
(41) But how is it possible for an uncleanness to have come in contact with all of it?
(42) The snow.
(43) In which there was a dead creeping thing.
(44) Such as the oven spoken of.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 17b

even if it was full of mustard seed1 [all within it is unclean].2

MISHNAH. THE SAGES SPOKE OF A WOMAN IN METAPHOR: [THERE IS IN HER] CHAMBER3 AN ANTE-CHAMBER4 AND AN UPPER CHAMBER.5 THE BLOOD OF THE CHAMBER6 IS UNCLEAN, THAT OF THE UPPER CHAMBER7 IS CLEAN. IF BLOOD IS FOUND IN THE ANTE-CHAMBER, AND THERE ARISES A DOUBT ABOUT ITS CHARACTER,8 IT IS DEEMED UNCLEAN, BECAUSE IT IS PRESUMED TO HAVE COME FROM THE SOURCE.3

GEMARA. Rami b. Samuel and R. Isaac son of Rab Judah learnt the tractate of Niddah at R. Huna's. Rabba son of R. Huna once found them while they were sitting at their studies and saying: The chamber is within, the ante-chamber is without and the upper chamber is built above them,9 and a duct communicates between the upper chamber and the ante-chamber.10 If blood is found anywhere from the duct inwards, and there is any doubt about its character,8 it is deemed unclean11 but if it is found anywhere from the duct outwards, and there is a doubt about its character,8 it is deemed clean.12 He13 thereupon proceeded to his father and said to him, 'You told them, Master,14 that "if there is any doubt about its character15 it is deemed unclean", but have we not learnt: BECAUSE IT IS PRESUMED TO HAVE COME FROM THE SOURCE?'16 'I', the other replied, 'meant this: [Blood found anywhere] from the duct inwards is17 undoubtedly unclean,18 [but if it was found anywhere] from the duct outwards, it is deemed to be doubtfully unclean'.19 Said Abaye: Why is20 it [that if blood is found anywhere] from the duct outwards it is deemed to be doubtfully unclean?21 Obviously because it is possible that she bowed down and the blood flowed thither from the chamber. [But, then, why in the case where blood is found anywhere] from the duct inwards, is it not also assumed that she might have staggered backwards22 and the blood originated from the upper chamber?23 Rather, said Abaye, if you follow possibilities24 the uncleanness is doubtful in either case25 and if you follow presumption [blood found anywhere] from the duct inwards is undoubtedly unclean,26 [but if it was found anywhere] from the duct outwards it is undoubtedly clean.27

R. Hiyya taught: Blood found in the ante-chamber28 renders [the woman] liable [for a sin-offering] if she enters the Sanctuary,29 and terumah30 must be burnt on its account.29 R. Kattina, however, ruled: No sin-offering31 is incurred if she enters the Sanctuary,32 and terumah30 is not burnt on its account.32 According to the first alternative33 which Abaye mentioned, viz., 'If you follow possibilities',34 support is available for the ruling of R. Kattina35 but36 a divergence of view is presented against R. Hiyya. According to the second alternative33 you mentioned, viz., 'If you follow presumption'37 support is provided for the ruling of R. Hiyya38

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(1) So that only those seeds that are actually round the sides of the oven could possibly come into direct contact with the oven.
(2) V. Hul. 24b. Which proves that, in the case of an earthenware oven, uncleanness is conveyed to objects within it, even though these had not come in direct contact with it.
(3) The uterus.
(4) Vagina.
(5) The urinary bladder (from the point of view of a woman lying on her back).
(6) Being menstrual.
(7) Being due to some internal wound.
(8) Sc. whether it originated in the uterus or urinary bladder.
(9) Cf. supra n. 7.
(10) So that blood from the former may trickle down into the latter.
(11) Since it is obvious that it came from the chamber. Had it come from the upper chamber it could not in the natural course have made its way backwards to the spot where it was discovered.
(12) Because it is presumed to have originated from the upper chamber.
(13) Rabbah b. R. Huna.
(14) So MS.M. Cur. edd., 'you told us, Master'.
(15) The expression of 'doubt' obviously implying that there was no proof whatsoever that the blood originated in the chamber.
(16) Emphasis on PRESUMED. If it is presumed to originate from the source (sc. the chamber) the uncleanness could not be described as a matter of 'doubt' but as one of certainty.
(17) In agreement with our Mishnah.
(18) V. supra p. 216, n. 13.
(19) It being impossible to decide whether it originated in the chamber or in the upper chamber.
(20) Lit., 'what is the difference'.
(21) Though, since on that spot it is most likely to have come from the upper chamber, one might well have expected it to be clean.
(22) And thus caused the blood to flow inwards.
(23) Since this is obviously a possibility the uncleanness should only be a matter of doubt and not, as R. Huna asserted, a certainty.
(24) Bending forward or staggering backwards.
(25) Whether the blood is found on the one or on the other side of the duct, since in either case two possibilities (cf. prev. n.) may be equally assumed.
(26) Since it may well be presumed to have originated in the chamber. Had it originated in the upper chamber it would have made its way to the outer side of the duct only. Our Mishnah's ruling, IT IS DEEMED UNCLEAN etc. may thus refer to such a case.
(27) Since in that place it is presumed to have come from the upper chamber, and the possibility of bending forward is disregarded.
(28) It is explained infra on which side of the duct.
(29) Because the blood is certainly unclean.
(30) That was touched by the woman.
(31) Though the entry is forbidden.
(32) Since the character of her blood cannot be determined with any degree of certainty.
(33) Lit., 'that expression'.
(34) Sc. that the uncleanness is merely a matter of doubt.
(35) Who also regards the uncleanness as doubtful. R. Kattina might thus refer to both cases, where the blood was found on the one, or on the other side of the duct.
(36) Since no certain uncleanness is recognized.
(37) In accordance with which a distinction is drawn between blood found from the duct inwards or outwards.
(38) Whose ruling would thus refer to blood found from the duct inwards.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 18a

but1 a divergence of view is presented against R. Kattina.2 According to the ruling of R. Huna3 neither of them differs from the other,4 since one5 might deal with blood found anywhere from the duct inwards while the other6 might deal with such as was found anywhere from the duct outwards. According to Rami b. Samuel and R. Isaac the son of Rab Judah, however, who ruled, 'From the duct outwards, and there is a doubt about its character, it is deemed clean' and 'from the duct inwards, and there is a doubt about its character, it is deemed unclean', how are these rulings7 to be explained? Obviously [as referring8 to blood found] anywhere from the duct inwards.9 Must it then be assumed10 that their ruling differs from that of R. Hiyya?11 - This is no difficulty, since one12 refers to blood found on the floor of the ante-chamber13 while the others14 refer to blood found on the roof of the ante-chamber.15

R. Johanan stated: In three instances16 did the Sages follow the majority rule17 and treated them as certainties, viz., the 'source', the 'placenta' and the 'piece'. The 'source'? The case already spoken of.18 The 'placenta'? Concerning which we have learnt: If a placenta19 is within a house, the house is unclean;20 and this is so not because a placenta is regarded as a child but because generally there is no placenta without a child in it.21 R. Simeon said, The child might have been mashed22 before it came forth.23 A 'piece'? For it was taught:24 If a woman aborted a shaped25 hand or a shaped foot she26 is subject to the uncleanness of birth,27 and there is no need to consider the possibility28 that it might have come from a shapeless body.29 But are there30 no others?31 Is there not in fact the case of nine shops32 concerning which it was taught: If there were nine shops32 all of which were selling ritually killed meat and one shop that was selling nebelah33 meat and a man bought some meat in one of them and he does not know in which of them he bought it, the meat is forbidden on account of the doubt;34 but if35 meat is found,36 the majority rule is to be followed?37 - We38 speak of uncleanness;39 we do not discuss the question of a prohibition.40 But is there not the case of the nine [dead] frogs among which there was one [dead] creeping thing41 and a man touched one of them and he does not know which one it was that he touched, where he is unclean on account of the doubt if this occurred in a private domain,42 but if it occurred in a public domain such a doubtful case is regarded as clean; and if one43 was found44 the majority rule is to be followed?45 - We46 deal with the uncleanness of a woman; we do not discuss general questions of uncleanness. But is there not the following case of which R. Joshua b. Levi spoke: If a woman crossed a river

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(1) As no doubtful uncleanness is recognized.
(2) Who does recognize it (cf. prev. n.).
(3) Who told his son that blood on the inward side of the duct is unclean and on its outward side is clean.
(4) Neither R. Hiyya and R. Kattina differ from each other nor either of them from him.
(5) R. Hiyya.
(6) R. Kattina.
(7) Of R. Hiyya and R. Kattina.
(8) In agreement with R. Kattina.
(9) Since blood found on its outward side is deemed to be clean and the woman is not only exempt from a sin-offering if she enters the Sanctuary, but is not even forbidden to enter it.
(10) Since in no case do they recognize certain uncleanness.
(11) Who does recognize certain uncleanness. Is it likely, however, that they would both differ from him?
(12) R. Hiyya, in ruling that the blood is definitely unclean.
(13) Which is the natural passage for blood issuing from the chamber.
(14) Rami and R. Isaac, who regard the blood as only doubtfully unclean.
(15) Which is nearer to the upper chamber.
(16) Lit., 'places', where doubts existed.
(17) Sc. the majority of the respective cases concerning which no doubt exists.
(18) In the last clause of our Mishnah, and in the ruling of R. Hiyya (supra 17b), from which it is obvious that, since mostly the blood in question issues from the source, any blood in the ante-chamber is assumed to originate from that source.
(19) About which it is unknown whether it did or did not contain a dead embryo.
(20) As overshadowing a corpse, though it is unknown (cf. prev. n.) whether the placenta contained one.
(21) From which it is obvious that the uncleanness of the placenta is regarded as a certainty by the majority rule, since most placentas contain embryos.
(22) And mixed up with the blood of birth which, representing the greater part of the mixture, neutralizes it.
(23) Infra 26a.
(24) Cf. marg. gl. Cur. edd., 'we learnt'.
(25) Lit., 'cut'.
(26) Lit., 'its mother'.
(27) And, since it is unknown whether it was that of a male or a female, the restrictions of both are imposed upon her.
(28) Which (cf. infra 24a) would exempt her from the certainty of uncleanness.
(29) Infra 24a, which proves that by the majority rule, the doubtful case is regarded as a certainty because the majority of births (which are normal) is followed.
(30) Beside the three instances mentioned by R. Johanan.
(31) Where the majority rule is followed.
(32) In a market in which there were ten such shops.
(33) V. Glos.
(34) Because the shop with the prohibited meat, being a fixed place, has the same status as half the number of all the shops in the market; and, consequently, the majority rule does not apply.
(35) On the floor of the market in which the ten shops were situated.
(36) So that the meat did not come from a fixed place.
(37) V. Hul. 95a; and, since the majority of the shops sold meat that was ritually killed, the meat found is also regarded as ritually fit. Now since this provides another instance of a doubtful case that, by reason of the majority rule, is regarded as a certainty, why did R. Johanan mention three instances only?
(38) Sc. R. Johanan in mentioning the three instances.
(39) With which all the three instances deal.
(40) To which the last case cited refers.
(41) The latter conveys uncleanness but not the former (cf. Lev. XI, 29).
(42) Since the creeping thing was in a fixed place which is equal in status to half of all the animals in the place.
(43) Of the ten creatures mentioned.
(44) Sc. the man touched an isolated animal which had no fixed place.
(45) Tosef. Toh. VI. As the majority are frogs the man is clean. Now why was not this case of doubtful uncleanness mentioned by R. Johanan?
(46) Sc. R. Johanan in mentioning the three instances.

Talmud - Mas. Nidah 18b

and miscarried1 in it, she must bring a sacrifice which may be eaten, since we follow the majority of women, and the majority of women bear normal children?2 - We spoke of Tannaitic rulings;3 we did not discuss reported traditions.4 But, surely, when Rabin came5 he stated, 'R. Jose son of R. Hanina raised an objection [against R. Joshua b. Levi from a Baraitha dealing with] a forgetful woman,6 but I do not know what objection it was',7 Does not this mean that it8 presented no objection but rather provided support?9 - No; it is possible [that he meant that it] neither presented an objection nor provided any support.

What does it10 exclude?11 If it be suggested that it10 was intended to exclude the case12 where the majority rule is opposed by the rule of presumption13 so that in such a case terumah14 may not be burnt on its account,15 surely [it could be retorted] did not R. Johanan once say this,16 for we learnt, 'If a child is found at the side of dough, with a piece of dough in his hand, R. Meir declares the dough clean, but the Sages declare it unclean because it is the nature of a child to slap17 [dough]';18 and when it was asked, 'What is R. Meir's reason' [the answer given was that] he holds the view that though most children slap dough a minority of them do not, and since this dough stands in the presumption of cleanness;19 you combine the status of the minority20 with the rule of presumption21 and the majority rule22 is impaired,23 while the Rabbis [regard] the minority as non-existent, and, where the majority rule is opposed by that of presumption, the majority rule takes precedence; and in connection with this Resh Lakish citing R. Oshaia stated: This is a presumption24 on the strength of which terumah is burnt,25 while R. Johanan stated, This26 is not a presumption on the strength of which terumah is burnt?27 - It28 was rather intended to exclude the rule of majority of which R. Judah spoke.29 For we learnt: If a woman aborted a shapeless object,30 if there was blood with it she is unclean31 otherwise she is clean; R. Judah ruled: In either case she is unclean.32 And in connection with this Rab Judah citing Samuel stated: R. Judah declared the woman unclean only where the shapeless object had the colour of one of the four kinds of blood,33 but if it had that of any other kinds of blood34 the woman is clean, while R. Johanan stated: [If it had the colour] of one of the four kinds of blood35 all36 agree that she is unclean, and if it had that of any other kinds of blood all agree that she is clean; they37 differ only in the case where she aborted something

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(1) In consequence of which it is unknown whether or not the miscarriage was a developed child.
(2) Infra 29a. Now since her sacrifice, a bird sin-offering (the method of whose killing by pinching would have caused an unconsecrated, or doubtfully consecrated bird to be nebelah), may be eaten, it follows that the bird is deemed to be duly consecrated because, by reason of the majority rule, the woman's doubtful birth is regarded as a certain birth of a normal child. Why then did not R. Johanan mention this case which concerns a woman's uncleanness?
(3) Lit., 'our Mishnah', sc. rulings occurring in a Mishnah or a Baraitha.
(4) Of Amoras. R. Joshua b. Levi was an Amora.
(5) From Palestine to Babylon.
(6) Lit., 'mistaken', one who cannot tell the date on which she bore her child.
(7) Infra 29a.
(8) The Baraitha dealing with the forgetful woman.
(9) For R. Joshua b. Levi's ruling. Since the answer is presumably in the affirmative the ruling given here in the name of R. Joshua b. Levi has its origin in a Baraitha. Why then, since it is a case of the uncleanness of a woman and is also a Tannaitic ruling, was it not included among those cited supra by R. Johanan?
(10) R. Johanan's limitation of the instances supra to three.
(11) I.e., what other doubtful instance is there that, despite the majority rule, is not treated as a certainty?
(12) Of a woman's uncleanness.
(13) Lit., 'there . . . with it'.
(14) Being doubtfully unclean.
(15) Sc. on account of the doubtful uncleanness.
(16) Explicitly, in other cases of uncleanness. Why then should he repeat it here by implication?
(17) Toh. III, 8.
(18) In consequence of which he imparts to it the uncleanness which he is presumed to have contracted from menstrual women who coddle him or play with him (R. Tam.). Aliter (Rashi): 'To dabble in the rubbish heap', where he contracts uncleanness from dead creeping things. His contact with the dough is regarded as a certainty (cf. Tosaf.).
(19) As is any dough, unless the contrary is proved.
(20) Of children who do not slap dough and, therefore, cannot impart to it their uncleanness (so according to Tosaf.). Aliter: Who do not dabble in the rubbish heap and, therefore, contract no uncleanness (according to Rashi).
(21) The dough is presumed to be clean (cf. prev. n. but one).
(22) That 'most children slap dough' or 'dabble in the rubbish heap'.
(23) By the major force of two to one.
(24) Sc. that it is a child's nature to slap dough (Rashi). The term 'presumption' is here used loosely and really denotes 'majority'.
(25) Sc. the majority rule by which it is offered has been given the force of a certainty.
(26) Since 'the presumption of uncleanness' is here opposed by 'majority'.
(27) Because it has not the force of a certainty. Now, since R. Johanan made here this explicit statement on the relative importance of the majority rule and that of presumption, what need was there to repeat it implicitly supra?
(28) R. Johanan's limitation supra to three instances.
(29) Sc. that in that case the uncleanness which is dependent on the majority rule is not regarded as a certainty. It is only one of a doubtful character and, in consequence, terumah that is subject to such uncleanness may not be burnt.
(30) Lit., 'piece'.
(31) As a menstruant. Since the abortion cannot be regarded as a child she is exempt from the uncleanness of childbirth.
(32) Infra 21a. It is impossible in his opinion for an abortion to be free from all blood, though the latter might sometimes escape attention.
(33) Described in the Mishnah infra 19a, as unclean. Black and red blood are here regarded as of the same colour, the latter being a deteriorated form of the former. The Mishnah treating them as two gives the total number of kinds of unclean blood as five. In R. Judah's opinion the colour of unclean blood is proof that the entire mass is a piece of clotted blood. Hence the woman's menstrual uncleanness. The Rabbis, however, do not regard it as blood but as a shapeless piece of flesh.
(34) Green or white, for instance.
(35) Cf. prev. n. but one.
(36) Even the Rabbis.
(37) The Rabbis and R. Judah.

 

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