Talmud - Mas. Yoma 2a
MISHNAH. SEVEN DAYS BEFORE THE DAY OF ATONEMENT THE HIGH PRIEST WAS REMOVED FROM HIS HOUSE TO THE CELL OF THE COUNSELLORS1 AND ANOTHER PRIEST WAS PREPARED TO TAKE HIS PLACE IN CASE ANYTHING2 HAPPENED TO HIM [THE HIGH PRIEST] THAT WOULD UNFIT HIM [FOR THE SERVICE]. R. JUDAH SAID: ALSO ANOTHER WIFE WAS PREPARED FOR HIM IN CASE HIS WIFE SHOULD DIE. FOR IT IS WRITTEN,3 AND HE SHALL MAKE ATONEMENT FOR HIMSELF AND FOR HIS HOUSE. ‘HIS HOUSE THAT MEANS ‘HIS WIFE’. THEY SAID TO HIM: IF SO THERE WOULD BE NO END TO THE MATTER.4
GEMARA. We learned elsewhere: Seven days before the burning of the [red] heifer5 the priest who was to burn the heifer was removed from his house to the cell in the north-eastern corner before the Birah.6 It was called the cell of the stone chamber.7 And why was it called the cell of the stone chamber? Because all its functions [in connection with the red heifer] had to be performed only in vessels made of either cobble-stones,8 stone or earthenware. What was the reason [for that restriction]? Since a tebul-yom9 was permitted to [perform the ceremony of] the heifer, as we have learnt:10 They [deliberately] rendered the priest ritually impure to remove [a false notion] from the minds of the Sadducees, who used to say: ‘Only by those on whom the sun has set could it be performed’, the Rabbis ordained that only vessels made of cobble-stones, stone, or earthenware which are immune to impurity — should be used in connection with the heifer, lest the ceremony thereof be treated slightly.11
Why [was the ceremony performed] in the north-eastern corner? — Since the heifer was a sin-offering12 and a sin-offering had to be sacrificed in the northern corner, whereas, on the other hand, it is written about the heifer,13 Towards the front of the tent of meeting,14 the Rabbis ordained [for the heifer] a cell in the northeastern corner, so that [the special importance of this ceremony] be clearly recognized.
What is Birah? — Rabbah b. Bar Hana in the name of R. Johanan said: There was a place on the Temple mount called Birah. Resh Lakish said: The whole sanctuary is called Birah, as it is written, And to build the Birah for which I have made provision.15
Whence is it proved16 that it is necessary to remove the priest [from his house]? — R. Minyumi b. Hilkiah in the name of R. Mahsiah b. Idi, in the name of R. Johanan said: The text reads:17 As hath been done this day, so the Lord hath commanded to do, to make atonement for you;18 the work la'asoth [to do] refers to the matter of the [red] heifer, the words lekapper ‘alekem [to make atonement for you] refer to the work of the Day of Atonement. It is obvious that the whole of this text could not be taken as referring to the heifer, because of the words ‘to atone’ and the heifer has nothing to do with atonement. But let us assume that the whole text19 refers to the Day of Atonement? — They said [in answer to this suggestion]: One may infer from, the fact that the identical expression ziwwah [he commanded] is used.20 Here21 it is written: The Lord ziwwah [commanded] to do,22 and there23 it is written: This is the statute of the law which the Lord ziwwah [has commanded]:24 just as in the latter [passage ziwwah] refers to the heifer, so does it in the former refer to the heifer, and just as the removal [of the priest is enjoined] in the one, so must the removal [of the priest apply] to the other.
(1) Parhedrin (Gr. **), assessors, counselors. V. infra 8b. [According to Abba Saul (Mid. V, 4 cf. Bertinoro a.l.) it was identical with the wood chamber on the south of the Temple Court. It has also been identified with the Chamber of Hewn Stones, the seat of the Sanhedrin. V. Buchler, Das Synedrion, p. 23ff]
(3) Lev. XVI, 6.
(4) His second wife too might die.
(5) Num. XIX, 2.
(6) The Temple. V. I Chron. XXIX, 1. J. Pes. 35a; Zeb. 119a.
(7) [Mishnah Parah omits ‘cell’.]
(8) Or ‘vessels made of dung’.
(9) Lit., ‘one who has bathed in the daytime (but must wait for sunset to be perfectly clean)’. The Sadducees would exclude him from service at either ceremony until after sunset.
(10) Parah III, 7.
(11) Due to the feeling that since a tebul-yom was admitted, its degree of sanctity may not be too high.
(12) It is a ‘hattath’, this word meaning here purification, may also he translated as ‘sin-offering’. Num. XIX, 9
(13) lbid. XIX, 4.
(14) Lying east.
(15) I Chron. XXIX, 19.
(16) Both for the service of the Day of Atonement and the red heifer ceremony.
(17) With reference to the seven days of the consecration of the Tabernacle in the wilderness.
(18) Lev. VIII, 34.
(20) On the Rabbinic inference from analogy, gezerah shawah, v. Glos.
(21) In connection with the consecration ceremonies.
(22) Lev. VIII, 34.
(23) In connection with the red heifer.
(24) Num. XIX, 2.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 2b
But perhaps say that [the word] ziwwah1 [he commanded] has reference to [the word] ziwwah which occurs in connection with the Day of Atonement,2 since the verse reads,3 And he did as the Lord ziwwah [commanded] Moses?4 — One may infer from [the word] ziwwah used before conformity5 for another case in which ziwwah is used also before conformity,6 but one may not infer ziwwah is used before conformity5 for ziwwah used after conformity.7 Perhaps ziwwah1 has reference to sacrifices,8 for it is written, On the day when the Lord zawwotho9 [commanded] the children of Israel?10 — One may fitly infer ziwwah6 from ziwwah,5 but one may not infer zawwotho11 from ziwwah.12 But what does it matter? Did not the school of R. Ishmael teach that [in the verse], The priest shall return or the priest shall come in,13 ‘returning’ and ‘coming in’ mean one and the same thing?14 — These words [of the school of R. Ishmael] apply only when there is no identical word,15 but where such a similar word is used, the inference may be made only on the basis of absolute identity of expression. — [We stated above that the word] ‘lekapper’ [to atone] has reference to the Day of Atonement. May it not refer [also]16 to the atonement resulting from a sacrifice?17 — How could we know which priest would happen to perform the sacrifice so that he would have to be removed [from his house]?18 But why should we not really have to postulate such separation for the whole priestly division?19 — It is proper to make inference from something for which a definite time is appointed20 for something which similarly is fixed for a definite time.21 That excludes any inference [from the consecration of the priest, an annual event] to sacrifices which are offered up every day.22 Perhaps [the reference is to] the [three] festivals?23 — One may infer something which takes place but once a year24 from something else which took place but once a year, but inference for these festivals is excluded since they do not take place but once a year. Perhaps [the reference is] to one festival.25 And if you would answer [by saying], We would not know to which [it has reference], [it would be] either the festival of Passover, which Scripture always mentions26 [as the first of the three], or the feast of Sukkoth, because a great number of commandments apply to it!27 -The point is, however, that you may infer the [law of the priest's] removal [from his house] for seven days before the service which he is to perform on one day28 from [another case in which the priest is] removed also for seven days for the service of one day;29 but one may not fitly infer that [a priest must be] removed for seven days for the service of seven30 days from the fact that a law exists obliging [the priest's] removal for seven days for the service of one day.29 Yet perhaps [the reference is to] the Eighth Day31 because there would be a service of only one day? — One may infer [laws concerning] a day which is not immediately preceded by another [festival] sanctity28 from another day,29 which similarly is not preceded by other [festival] sanctity,29 but one may not infer for a day preceded by [festival] Sanctity32 from a day unpreceded by such.
But [even if the inference by analogy be unjustified] is there no legitimate conclusion a minori ad majus, viz., if a day unpreceded by another [festival] sanctity requires [for the officiating priest] a seven day removal [from his family], how much more should a day preceded by another [festival] sanctity require it!33 — R. Mesharsheya answered: Scripture expressly states this day,34 that means on a day like this.35 R. Ashi said:36 Could there be any festival the major37 part of which would require no removal [of the priest], while its attachment38 would require it. And even according to the one who holds that the eighth day is [not a mere attachment to Sukkoth, but] an independent festival day, that applies only to
(1) Written in connection with the consecrations.
(2) So that the whole passage of Lev. VIII, 34 refers to that day.
(3) Lev. XVI, 34.
(4) To justify inference from identity of phrase or word, there must be in the two texts a certain identity of circumstance.
(5) As in Lev. VIII, 34 where the phrase is, ‘He commanded to do’.
(6) As in the case of the red heifer where too it is, ‘He commanded to do’.
(7) As in the case with the Day of Atonement, where the text is, ‘and he did as the Lord commanded’.
(8) So that every priest should require separation before offering a public sacrifice.
(9) From the same root as ziwwah. Lit., ‘His commanding’.
(10) Ibid. VII, 38.
(11) V. nn. 14 and 15.
(12) To justify inference by gezerah shawah there must be exact identity of expression.
(13) Ibid. Xlv, 39.
(14) For the purposes of inference v. Hor., Sonc. ed., p. 57, n. 11. So that such literalness as the insistence on differentiation between ziwwah and zawwotho is not justified.
(15) From the congruity of which an analogy may be inferred.
(16) V. Tosaf. Yesh.
(17) Offered by an individual for atonement (Rashi); so that every priest would need such removal before sacrificing.
(18) The priests were assigned their service by means of a lot. V. infra 22a.
(19) Because the task may come to anyone by the allotment. And thus the question remains, perhaps the word ‘lekapper’ applies also to the atonement of a sacrifice, cf. n. 3.
(20) The consecration of the priests.
(21) The Day of Atonement.
(22) There are many sacrifices offered up by the individuals.
(23) [Since the sacrifices offered on festivals serve for atonement, v. Shebu. 2a-b.]
(24) [The consecration of the priests ‘once a year’ is not to be taken literally; it means once in that particular year in which the consecration was held.]
(25) Which is an annual event.
(26) Ex. XXIII, 15; Lev. XXIII, 5; Num. XXVIII, 16; Deut. XVI, 1.
(27) The laws touching the booths, the citron, myrtle, palm-branch and willow of the brook; the ceremony of the libation, etc.
(28) The Day of Atonement.
(29) I.e., the eighth day of the Consecration, v. Lev. IX, 1ff.
(30) Passover or Sukkoth.
(31) Shemini ‘Azereth. The Eighth Day of the Solemn Assembly celebrated after the seventh day of the Festival of Booths (Sukkoth), in which case the inference would appear legitimate.
(32) Shemini Azereth is preceded by the seven days of Sukkoth.
(33) Shemini ‘Azereth, which is preceded by the seven days of Sukkoth.
(34) Lev. VIII, 34.
(35) Confirming the earlier differentiation.
(36) Countering the suggestion that the reference is to Shemini ‘Azereth.
(37) Sukkoth has seven days preceding the one day of ‘Azereth.
(38) Shemini ‘Azereth.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 3a
Pe'Z'R'K'Sh'B,1 but in matters of complementing the sacrifice of the festival, the eighth day is but a continuation of the first day, as we have learned: He who failed to offer up the festival sacrifice2 on the first day of the feast [of Sukkoth], may do so during the entire festive season including the last day of the feast.3
[Perhaps] say [that the reference is to] Pentecost,4 because that would also mean removal of the priest for seven days preceding a one-day service?5 — R. Abba said: One may fitly infer a case6 in which one ox and one ram are offered from another7 case in which one ox and one ram are offered, this excludes, however, Pentecost, on which two8 rams are to be sacrificed. This would be right according to the opinion that on the Day of Atonement only one ram is being offered up,9 but what could be said according to the view that on the Day of Atonement too, two rams were to be offered up?10 For it has been taught: Rabbi11 said, The ram mentioned here [in Leviticus] is the same as the one mentioned in the Book of Numbers;12 R. Eliezer son of R. Simeon said: Two rams are here [involved], the one mentioned here and the other mentioned in the Book of Numbers!13 — It may be in accord even with the opinion of R. Eliezer son of R. Simeon. Because there14 one [of the rams] is offered up in fulfilment of the regular sacrifices for that day, and the other as one of the additional sacrifices, whereas in the case of Pentecost both are the regular sacrifices of that day.15 [Perhaps] say that [the reference is to] New Year16 which should also imply the removal of the priest for seven days preceding a one-day service? — R. Abbahu said, One may infer a case in which the priest offers up an ox and a ram from his own means17 from another case in which he offers up an ox and a ram from18 his own means, that excludes Pentecost19 and Rosh hashanah20 on which both are offered up from public [congregational] funds. This would be right according to the opinion which holds that the words kah leka21 [‘take thee’] mean ‘take from thy own means’ and
(1) This is a mnemonical acrostic for: P (payyis allotment, by counting, of the work to be done by the priests in the sanctuary. No such counting took place during the Sukkoth festival, but it was the rule on Shemini ‘Azereth); Z (zeman — the blessing on the entrance of a festival referring to the return of the festive season. This benediction was repeated on the eve of Shemini ‘Azereth, thus constituting it an independent holy day); R (regel-festival with its own name); K (korban — having its own number of sacrifices); Sh (shir — song — Shemini ‘Azereth having its own psalm in the liturgy); B (berakah-blessing — on Shemini ‘Azereth a special prayer was offered up for the life of the king.) V. R.H. 4b. In all these respects Shemini ‘Azereth might be considered an independent festival.
(2) חג means (Jastrow): To turn, to celebrate an anniversary, to observe a festival, to make a periodical pilgrimage, to offer the pilgrim's festive sacrifice.
(3) The conclusion, i.e. , Shemini ‘Azereth, v. Hag. 17a.
(4) ‘Azereth means detention, gathering, concluding feast. ‘Azereth in general designates ‘Azereth Pesah’, i.e., Shabuoth
(the Feast of Weeks, Pentecost) to be distinguished from Shemini ‘Azereth, the concluding festival of Sukkoth.
(5) The biblical Pentecost has one day only.
(6) The Day of Atonement, Lev. XVI, 5.
(7) The eighth day of the priest's consecration, Lev. IX, 2.
(8) Lev. XXIII, 18.
(9) The question being whether the ram demanded in Lev. XVI, 5 is identical with the one mentioned in Num. XXIX, 8, or whether two different sacrifices are implied.
(10) That would put the Day of Atonement into the same class as Pentecost and would thus preclude inference from the eighth day of the consecration of the priest for the former.
(11) R. Judah ha-Nasi, the Prince, redactor of the Mishnah.
(12) Lit., ‘one fifth of (dealing with) Numbers’. Homesh applies to one of the five books of the Torah, as well as to one of the five books of the Psalms. ‘Hamisha Homshe Torah’ — the five books of the Torah.
(13) V. infra 75b.
(14) On the Day of Atonement, Lev. XVI,3 does not call the ram a’ musaf’ or ‘additional’ sacrifice, as in all other cases, where the phrase ‘apart from the morning burnt-offering’ occurs, to indicate that the sacrifice in question is ‘apart’ or ‘additional’ as throughout Num. XXVIII and XXIX.
(15) So that Pentecost, having different laws, may not fitly be inferred from the eighth day of the priest's consecration.
(16) Rosh ha-Shanah, the Jewish New Year, originally one day only, v. Bez. 5a.
(17) Lev. XVI, 3, Herewith shall Aaron come into the holy place, i.e., he shall bring it along from his own.
(18) At the consecration, Lev. IX, 2, Take thee, i.e, from thy own means.
(19) Lev. XXIII, 18, And ye shall present, i.e., the community.
(20) ‘And ye shall present’ also occurs in connection with the Rosh ha-Shanah sacrifices, ibid. XXIII, 25.
(21) Lev. IX, 2.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 3b
‘aseh leka1 [‘make thee’] mean ‘make from thy own means’, but what could be said [in the argument above] according to the opinion [that kah leka2 means ‘take for thyself] from the community funds’, for we have been taught:3 The expression ‘kah leka’ means ‘mi-sheleka [from thy own] and ‘aseh leka means mi-sheleka [taken from thy own funds], but we-yikehu eleka4 means [they shall take for them] from community funds; these are the words of R. Josiah; R. Jonathan said, Both ‘kah leka’ and ‘we-yikehu eleka’ mean from community funds, and what is intimated by saying ‘kah leka’ [take thee]? As it were,5 ‘I prefer your own [private means expended on this work] to the community's [expenditure]’. (Abba Hanan said in the name of R. Eleazar: One verse reads, Make thee an ark of wood,6 and another,7 And they shall make an ark of acacia-wood,8 how is that?9 Here it refers to a time when Israel act in accordance with His will,10 there it deals with a time when they do not act in accordance with His will) — They11 are disputing only as to the general meaning [of the word ‘leka’] in connection with the command to ‘take’ or to ‘do’, as e.g., Take thou also unto thee the chief spices,12 or Make thee two trumpets of silver,13 but in the above cases14 it is clearly indicated in the text that it is from thine own.15 For consider in [the portion of the Bible dealing with the] consecration of the priests, it is written: And unto the children of Israel thou shalt speak, saying: Take ye a he-goat for a sin-offering,16 why then the passage: And he said to Aaron: Take thee a bull-calf for a sin-offering?17 Conclude from this ‘kah leka’ means ‘mi-sheleka’, from your own. [Similarly] in connection with the Day of Atonement it reads: Herewith shall Aaron come into the holy place: with a young bullock for a sin-offering,18 etc. Why then the passage, And he shall take of the congregation of the children of Israel19 and And Aaron shall present the bullock of the sin-offering which is lo [for himself]?20 Conclude from this that the word ‘lo’ implies it is to be brought from his own means.
R. Ashi21 said: It is legitimate to infer a case in which an ox is offered up as sin-offering and a ram as burnt-offering22 from another case in which an ox is offered up as sin-offering and a ram as a burnt-offering;23 this excludes from analogy New Year24 and Pentecost,25 [as] in both cases both animals are offered up as burnt-offerings only.
Rabina said: One may infer a service performed by the high priest26 from another service performed by the high priest27 that excludes [the occasions mentioned] in all the questions [raised], because the services mentioned therein are not performed by the high priest.28 Others have this version of Rabina's reply: One may infer [certain rules for] a service held for the first time from a service held for the first time. This excludes all the other cases [referred to above], because none of them took place for the first time. What does this ‘first time’ mean? — Does it mean that the high priest had first performed service there?29 That would be [the argument of Rabina's in] the first version. No, it means the first service of its kind held in its place, which may fitly be inferred from another service30 held for the first time in its place. When R. Dimi came31 [from Palestine], he said: R. Johanan taught one thing, R. Joshua b. Levi two. R. Johanan taught one thing the words ‘la'asoth’, ‘lekapper’32 refer to the service of the Day of Atonement. R. Joshua b. Levi taught two things: ‘la'asoth’ means the ceremony of the [red] heifer, ‘lekapper’ refers to the service of the Day of Atonement. How could [you say that] R. Johanan taught [only] one thing? Have we not learnt in our Mishnah: SEVEN DAYS BEFORE THE DAY OF ATONEMENT, and in another Seven days before the burning of the heifer?33 — That34 is only a special provision.35 But did not R. Minyumi b. Hilkiah in the name of R. Mahsiah b. Idi, [and the latter] in the name of R. Johanan report the [interpretation of the text], ‘As hath been done this day, so hath the Lord commanded la'asoth [to do] lekapper ‘alekem [to make atonement for you]’. ‘La'asoth’ refers to the ceremony of the heifer and ‘lekapper’ to the service of the Day of Atonement?36 This interpretation was that of his teacher.37 For when Rabina came [from Palestine]38 he said: R. Johanan reported in the name of R. Ishmael that ‘la'asoth’ referred to the ceremony of the heifer, and ‘lekapper’ to the work of the Day of Atonement.
Said Resh Lakish to R. Johanan: Whence do you infer this interpretation? From the Consecration Service?39 Hence, just as with the Consecration Service, the omission of any prescribed form would render the service invalid [would you say that] here too40 the omission of anything prescribed [by inference from congruity of text] for that service, would render it invalid? And if you said: Yes, indeed, surely we learnt: ANOTHER PRIEST IS PREPARED TO TAKE HIS PLACE, not another priest is removed from his house!41 And if you would say MATHKININ [one prepares] and MAFRISHIN [one removes] mean the same thing, then the Mishnah ought to use in both passages either mathkinin or mafrishin!42 — [R. Johanan] said to him: And whence do you, Sir, infer it?43 — He answered: From [the account concerning] Sinai. For the Scriptural text reads, And the glory of the Lord abode upon Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered him44 six days, and He called unto Moses on the seventh day.45 Now consider: Since it is written ‘and He called unto Moses on the seventh day’, what do the ‘six days’ mean? They establish a rule46 for anyone who enters the camp of the Shechinah47 that he must remove himself from his house for six days. But we have learnt SEVEN?48 — Our Mishnah conforms to the opinion of R. Judah b. Bathyra who considers the possibility of the high priest's
(1) Num. X, 2.
(2) Must not be taken literally.
(3) Men. 28b.
(4) Ex. XXVII, 20.
(5) If it were possible to assume such intimation from God.
(6) Deut. X, 1.
(7) Ex. XXV, 10.
(8) In one verse the making is demanded of Moses, in the other of the children of Israel.
(9) Contradiction to be explained.
(10) When Israel fulfil God's will, it is they who get the credit for enabling Moses to perform His will. Otherwise all the credit is given to Moses.
(11) l.e., R. Josiah and R. Jonathan. Here follows the reply to the question, how meet the above argument in the view of R. Jonathan who holds that ‘kah leka’ means ‘take for them from community funds’.
(12) Ex. XXX 34.
(13) Num. X, 2.
(14) In connection with the offerings of the high priest on the Day of Atonement and the eighth day of the Consecration.
(15) The private means of the high priest.
(16) Lev. IX, 3.
(17) Ibid. IX, 2.
(18) Lev. XVI, 3.
(19) Ibid. XVI, 5.
(20) Ibid. XVI, 6.
(21) He and Rabina deal with the questions raised as to why the analogy may not include other festivals besides the Day of Atonement.
(22) On the Day of Atonement the high priest offers up as his private sacrifice an ox for the sin-offering and a ram for a burnt-offering.
(23) On the eighth day of the consecration a young ox is offered up as sin-offering and a ram as burnt-offering.
(24) On Rosh ha-Shanah no ox is offered up as sin-offering, Num. XXIX, 1-6.
(25) On ‘Azereth (Shabuoth) no ox is offered up as sin-offering, ibid. XXVIII, 26-31.
(26) The Day of Atonement.
(27) The Consecration.
(28) That answers all the questions raised.
(29) The first service ever performed by a high priest was that on the eighth day of the Consecration, hence it would be right to infer therefrom the service on the Day of Atonement, when the high priest for the first time offered up the community's sacrifice, on the first Day of Atonement.
(30) The service of the Day of Atonement took place in the Holy of Holies, which had never been entered before the first service on the first Day of Atonement, just as the Consecration Service included the first sacrifice on the outer altar, in priestly garments.
(31) Atha ‘came’ is the technical term for the return of scholars from Babylonia to Palestine and vice versa.
(32) Lekapper being the explanation of la'asoth.
(33) The priest in question was removed from his house, v. supra 2a.
(34) The rule in connection with the burning of the red heifer.
(35) Because in some other respects there is latitude in connection with the heifer service (v. supra p. 1, n. 7), some more stringent ordinances were decided upon, not, however as a matter of traditional law, but rather as an ad hoc regulation.
(36) This tradition in the name of R.Johanan is in evident conflict with the statement reported by R. Dimi.
(37) He reported only his teacher's decision, but did not surrender his own opinion.
(38) V. p. 9, n. 10.
(39) V. supra 2a and notes.
(40) With regard to the ceremony of the red heifer.
(41) So that, if the high priest were prevented from officiating the substitute priest would perform the service without the necessary previous separation, which would render his service invalid and the ceremony unprovided with a priest.
(42) Since the Mishnah deliberately uses two terms, their meaning must be different, hence Resh Lakish's question remains.
(43) The obligation to remove the priest from his house.
(44) I.e., Moses, R.V. ‘it’ referring to the mountain; v. infra 4a.
(45) Ex. XXIV, 16.
(46) Lit., ‘build a father’, a precedent, i.e., justify the conclusion from this specifically stated law to other cases.
(47) Lit., ‘royal residence’, then Divine Presence, here the Divine Camp, the Sanctuary.
(48) The Mishnah here speaks of a removal for seven days.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 4a
becoming ritually impure through family contact.1 R. Johanan said to Resh Lakish: It is right according to me who infer2 from the Consecration; for this agrees with what we are taught: ‘On both of them [the Priests]3 we sprinkle throughout the seven days[water] from all the sin-offerings4 that were there’;5 but according to you who infer from Sinai, was there any sprinkling done on Sinai? — But6 according to your own reasoning, it would not be right either, for in the consecration [ceremony the sprinkling was done with] blood, whereas here with water? — That7 is no difficulty. For R. Hiyya taught: ‘The water takes the place of blood’, but according to you, was there any sprinkling on Sinai? — He answered: It was a mere additional provision.8
We have a teaching in accord with R. Johanan,9 and we have a teaching in accord with Resh Lakish.10 ‘In accord with R. Johanan we have a teaching’; Scripture reads: Herewith [bezoth] shall Aaron come into the holy place,11 i.e., with that mentioned in that section, the section of the Consecration. And what is mentioned in the section about the Consecration? Aaron was removed for seven days and then officiated for one day, and Moses handed over to him12 throughout the seven days to train him in this service. Also for the future the high priest is to be removed for seven days and to officiate for one day, and two scholars of the disciples of Moses13 [this excludes Sadducees]14 transmitted to him throughout the seven days to train him in the service. Hence [the Rabbis] ruled that seven days before the Day of Atonement the high priest was removed from his house to the cell of the counsellors. And just as the high priest was removed, so was the priest burning the heifer removed to the cell lying in the north-eastern corner before the Temple and each of them was throughout the seven days sprinkled [with water] from all the sin-offerings that were there. And if you should ask: But during the Consecration the sprinkling was done with blood and here water, [remember] that the water takes the place of the blood. And it further says: ‘As hath been done this day so the Lord hath commanded la'asoth [to do], lekapper [to make atonement] for you’.15 ‘La'asoth’ refers to the ceremony of the heifer, ‘lekapper’ means the service of the Day of Atonement.16 But the word ‘be-zoth’ is required for the verse itself,17 i.e., with a young bullock for a sin-offering and a ram for a burnt-offering? — Answer:18 If ‘be-zoth’ were meant to refer only to the sacrifices, the text should have said ba-zeh [with this] or ba-eleh [with these], why [was] ‘be-zoth’ [chosen]? So that you may learn both things from it.19 Why was it necessary to cite the other verse?20 — You might have said only the first Day of Atonement requires that the high priest be removed at the Consecration, but on all future Days of Atonement no such removal is necessary; or [you might say] only the first21 high priest needed such removal but all future high priests do not require it; come and hear:22 ‘As hath been done this day etc.’23
‘We have a teaching in accord with Resh Lakish’: Moses went up in a cloud, was covered by the cloud, and was sanctified by the cloud in order that he might receive the Torah for Israel in sanctity, as it is written: And the glory of the Lord abode upon Mount Sinai,24 this took place after the Ten Commandments, which were at the beginning of the forty days,25 this is the view of R. Jose the Galilean. R. Akiba said [with reference to] ‘And the glory of the Lord abode’ from the beginning of the [third] month, and the cloud wa-yekasehu [covered it],26 i.e., the mountain,27
(1) Lit., ‘the uncleanness of his house’. His wife might become menstruant during congress, he as one having had congress with a menstruant would be levitically impure for seven days, thus prevented from officiating on the Day of Atonement.
(2) The obligation to remove the priest.
(3) The one officiating on the Day of Atonement and the one engaged with the red heifer.
(4) Name by which the red heifer ashes are known, v. Num. XIX, 9.
(5) V. infra 8a. A reserve of ashes was kept in the sanctuary for sprinklings. V. Parah 111, 11.
(6) This is Resh Lakish's rejoinder.
(7) This is R. Johanan's reply.
(8) To emphasize the importance of the ceremony of the heifer, and to signify the entrance upon the sanctuary on the Day of Atonement.
(9) Who inferred the removal from consecration. A Baraitha — a tradition or opinion of a Tanna not reported in the Mishnah.
(10) Who inferred it from Sinai.
(11) Lev. XVI, 3.
(12) The eighth day of the Consecration was ministered to by Aaron, Lev. IX, 2.
(13) The detailed laws for the service.
(14) Who held divergent views as to the service and changed its order from the prescribed form.
(15) Lev. VIII, 34.
(16) This cited Baraitha is thus in support of R. Johanan.
(17) It cannot be torn from the text, where it has obvious and important meaning, to be used for ad hoc interpretation.
(18) Lit., ‘they say’, or ‘I will say’.
(19) Zoth is feminine, the words for bullock and ram are masc., hence ba-zeh or ba-eleh would have been more correct. The choice of be-zoth indicates that something else is implied.
(20) The citing of an additional verse, where the first or first ones seemed to convey sufficient information, is an indication that erroneous inference might be made, which the additional verse, through its information, prevents.
(21) Aaron, Lev. VIII.
(22) ‘Come and hear’, a technical term for refuting a wrong opinion or repelling an attack.
(23) ‘So the Lord commanded you’, i.e., for all the future.
(24) Ex. XXIV, 16.
(25) Ex. XXIV, 18. Cf. ibid. XIX, 3,9,25.
(26) Wa-yekasehu may be translated ‘covered him’ or ‘covered it’, Moses or the mountain, the Hebrew word har (mountain) being also masculine.
(27) Moses came down to speak to Israel (Ex. XIX, 3f), hence it would be wrong to say that the cloud covered him six days before the Revelation.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 4b
then ‘He called unto Moses on the seventh day’. Moses and all Israel were standing there,1 but the purpose of Scripture was to honour Moses.2 R. Nathan says: The purpose of Scripture was that he [Moses] might be purged of all food and drink in his bowels so as to make him equal to the ministering angels.3 R. Mattiah b. Heresh4 says, The purpose of Scripture here was to inspire him with awe, so that the Torah be given5 with awe, with dread, with trembling, as it is said: Serve the Lord with fear and rejoice with trembling.6 What is the meaning of ‘And rejoice with trembling’?7 — R. Adda b. Mattena says in the name of Rab: Where there will be joy, there shall be trembling.8
In what do R. Jose the Galilean and R. Akiba differ? — In the controversy of these Tannaim. For we have been taught:9 On the sixth day of the month10 was the Torah given to Israel. R. Jose says on the seventh. He who says that the Torah was given on the sixth day holds that on the sixth it was given and on the seventh Moses ascended the mountain;11 he who holds that the Torah was given on the seventh assumes that on the seventh both the Torah was given and Moses ascended, as it is written, And He called unto Moses on the seventh day.12 Now R. Jose the Galilean is of the same opinion as the first Tanna,13 who held that the Torah was given on the sixth of the month, therefore this14 happened after the giving of the Ten Commandments: ‘The glory of the Lord abode on mount Sinai and the cloud covered him six days’ ‘him’ meaning Moses- ‘And He called unto Moses on the seventh day’ to receive the remainder of the Torah.15 For if the thought should come to you that ‘And the glory of the Lord abode’ from the New Moon [of Sivan], so that ‘And the cloud covered him’ referred to the mountain, and ‘The Lord called unto Moses on the seventh day’ to receive the Ten Commandments, surely they had received the Torah on the sixth day already and also the cloud had departed on the sixth day! — R. Akiba, however, held with R. Jose that the Torah was given to Israel on the seventh.16 Quite in accord with R. Akiba's teaching is the statement17 that the Tablets were broken on the seventeenth of Tammuz, for the twenty-four days of Sivan18 and the sixteen of Tammuz make up the forty days he was on the mountain, and on the seventeenth of Tammuz he went down and came19 to break the Tablets. But according to R. Jose the Galilean who holds that there were six days of the separation20 in addition to forty days [spent] on the mountain, the Tablets could not have been broken before the twenty-third of Tammuz? — R. Jose the Galilean will answer you: The six days of the separation are included in the forty days on the mountain.
The Master said: ‘"And He called Moses", whilst Moses and all Israel were standing’ there’. This interpretation supports the view of R. Eleazar, for R. Eleazar said: ‘And He called unto Moses’ whilst Moses and all Israel were standing there; the only purpose of Scripture is to do honour to Moses. They21 raised the following objection: [He heard the voice speaking] elaw [unto him] not lo [to him];22 hence we know that Moses heard, but all Israel did not hear?23 - This is no difficulty. The one passage speaks of Sinai, the other of the tent of meeting.24 Or, you might say, the one statement refers to the call, the other to the speech.25 R. Zerika asked a question concerning the contradiction of scriptural passages in the presence of R. Eleazar, or, according to another version, he asked the question in the name of R. Eleazar. One passage reads: And Moses was not able to enter into the tent of meeting because the cloud abode thereon,26 whereas another verse says: And Moses entered into the midst of the cloud?27 It teaches us that the Holy One, blessed be He, took hold of Moses and brought him into the cloud. The school of R. Ishmael taught: Here28 the word be-thok [in the midst] appears and it also appears elsewhere: And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea,29 just as there [the word be-thok] implies a path, as it is written: And the waters were a wall30 unto them,29 so here too there was a path, [for Moses through the cloud].
And the Lord called unto Moses, and spoke unto him;31 why does Scripture mention the call before the speech? — The Torah teaches us good manners: a man should not address his neighbour without having first called him. This supports the view of R. Hanina, for R. Hanina said: No man shall speak to his neighbour unless he calls him first to speak to him. Rabbah said: Whence do we know that if a man had said something to his neighbour the latter must not spread the news without the informant's telling him ‘Go and say it’? From the scriptural text: The Lord spoke to him out of the tent of meeting, lemor [saying] .32 At any rate it is to be inferred33 that both hold that the omission of any detail mentioned in connection with the priest's Consecration renders the ceremony invalid, for it was said: With regard to the ceremony of Consecration R. Johanan and R. Hanina are disputing; one says: The omission of any form prescribed in connection with the ceremony renders it invalid, whilst the other holds only such matter as is indispensable on any future occasion is indispensable now, whereas such detail as is dispensable in future generations, is dispensable even the first time. One may conclude that it is R. Johanan who holds that the omission of any detail whatsoever that is mentioned in connection with the Consecration ceremony renders such ceremony invalid, because R. Simeon b. Lakish said to R. Johanan34 [in the course of the argument]: ‘And just as with the ceremony of Consecration the omission of any prescribed detail renders the ceremony invalid. And R. Johanan did not retort at all’. That proof is conclusive.35 What is the [practical] difference between the opinions?
(1) Moses did not ascend the mountain nor did he separate from his circle till after the Revelation.
(2) All Israel were present, why then does Scripture report that the word of God came to Moses alone? — The answer is: To show him special regard.
(3) R. Nathan is of the opinion of R. Jose the Galilean that the call to Moses referred to in the verses was for separation after the Revelation, yet this offers no basis for necessitating separation before entering into the Sanctuary, as the object of Moses’ separation was that he might be like the ministering angels.
(4) He too shares the opinion of R. Jose the Galilean.
(5) To Moses and through him to Israel.
(6) Ps. II, 11.
(7) The terms seem contradictory.
(8) The Torah is a source of joy. The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart, Ps. XIX, 9, cited by Rashi. But there shall also be awe, reverence for the numen, the Lord, the Lawgiver. Tosaf. cites l Chron. XVI, 27 Strength and gladness are in His Place.
(9) Shah. 86b.
(10) Of Sivan, the first day of Shabuoth.
(12) Ex. XXIV, 16.
(13) The anonymous Tanna of the Baraitha
(14) Moses’ ascent on the mount.
(15) The other laws (beside the Ten Commandments) and the Oral Law.
(16) So that the ‘Seventh day’ refers to the seventh day on which the Torah was given.
(17) V. Ta'an. 26a.
(18) From the seventh to the thirtieth.
(19) Either ‘came to the camp of Israel, saw the dances and broke’ or paraphrastic for ‘broke’.
(20) After the Revelation.
(21) The teachers (students) in the academy.
(22) The passage, Num. VII, 89 reads: Moses . . . heard the voice speaking elaw (to him, which is the longer form, lo being the normal one) from above the ark-cover etc. The use, in this passage, of the longer form, seemed to suggest a closer or exclusive communication. According to Hayyug, quoted Otzar ha-Geonim VI, 1, n. 4, there is a difference of meaning derivable in accord with grammatical principles, in ‘lo’ and ‘elaw’ respectively.
(23) So that all Israel, indeed, did not hear God's message. If so, then the only purpose of the statement ‘. . . Scripture is to honour Moses’ is unjustified. For Scripture does not change the fact. It was Moses alone whom the message reached.
(24) In the tent of meeting only Moses could hear the voice. On Mount Sinai all Israel heard it, but to honour Moses, Scripture mentions him only as having done so.
(25) The call proper, the honour of the individual call, was vouchsafed to Moses alone, the speech following was heard by all.
(26) Ex. XL, 35.
(27) Ibid. XXIV, 18.
(28) The apparent contradiction is removed by the suggestion that he entered the cloud on this occasion with divine help.
(29) Ex. XIV, 22.
(30) The water being piled up like a wall, Israel walked along a path. The inference is from similarity of expression.
(31) Lev. I,1.
(32) Lemor here is taken to mean ‘to say it (to others)’, or else the next few words are illustratively, not logically implied: Speak (unto the children of Israel).
(33) From Resh Lakish's question to R. Johanan: ‘... just as with the Consecration service the omission of any prescribed form would render the service invalid’ and R. Johanan's tacit acceptance of this view, supra 3b.
(34) Supra 3b.
(35) Had he held a different view, he would surely not have permitted his opponent's statement to go unchallenged.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 5a
R. Joseph says the putting1 of the hands [upon the head of the sacrifice] is the difference. According to the one who holds that the omission of any detail renders the ceremony invalid, [failure] to lay the hand upon the head of the sacrifice would render the ceremony invalid. According to him who holds that only the omission of what is indispensable in the future renders the ceremony invalid, [omission of] the putting of the hand on the animal's head did not render the ceremony invalid. Whence do we know that in the future [the omission of] the putting of the hands [on the animal's head] is not indispensable?- For it has been taught: And he shall lay his hand . . . and it shall be accepted for him [to make atonement for him].2 Does the laying on of the hand make atonement for one? Does not atonement come through the blood, as it is said: For it is the blood that maketh atonement by reason of the life!3 Why, then, is it written: ‘And he shall lay his hand on . . . and it shall be accepted for him to make atonement for him’? To say that if he performed the laying on of the hands as an unimportant part4 of the commandment, Scripture would account it to him as if he had not obtained proper atonement.5 R. Nahman b. Isaac said: The waving6 is the difference. According to him who holds whatever detail is prescribed for the ceremony is indispensable, the waving is indispensable; according to him who holds that only what is indispensable for all the future is indispensable now, the waving is not indispensable. Whence do we know that for all time to come the waving is not indispensable? — For we have been taught:7 To be waved, to make atonement for him.8 Does the waving make atonement? Is it not the blood which makes atonement, as it is written, ‘For it is the blood that maketh atonement by reason of the life’? Then why does Scripture say, ‘To be waved, to make atonement for him’? To say that if he treats the waving as an unimportant part of the ceremony, Scripture accounts it to him as if he had not obtained proper atonement.
R. Papa said: The separation for seven days is the [practical] difference between the two opinions. According to the opinion that whatsoever is prescribed for the ceremony is indispensable, the separation, too,is indispensable; according to him who holds that only what is indispensable for all time to come is indispensable now, the separation is not indispensable. Whence do we know that the separation is not indispensable for all time to come? Because the Mishnah reads, [another priest] IS MADE READY FOR HIM, instead of is ‘separated for him’.9 Rabina said: The difference lies in the increase [in the number of garments]10 and of the anointments11 necessary during the seven days. According to the opinion that whatever is prescribed in connection therewith is indispensable, the increase [in the number of garments] and anointments during the seven days, too, is indispensable. According to him who holds that only what is indispensable for all time to come, is indispensable now, these things too are not indispensable. Whence do we know that they are not indispensable for all time to come? — For it was taught: And the priest who shall be anointed and who shall be consecrated to be priest in his father's stead, shall make the atonement.12 What does the passage come to teach?13 From the text: Seven days shall the son that is priest in his stead put them on [etc.],14 I would know that a priest who had put on the required larger number of garments and who had been anointed on each of the seven days15 was permitted to [‘minister in the holy place’]16 at the Consecration. Whence would I know that if he had put on the larger number of garments for but one day, and had been anointed on each of the seven days; or, if he had been anointed but one day, but has put on the larger number of garments for seven days, [he would also be permitted]? To convey that teaching, Scripture says, ‘Who shall be anointed and who shall be consecrated’, that means anointed and consecrated in whatever way.17 We have now found evidence that the larger number of garments is necessary in the first instance for the seven days. Whence do we know that anointment on each of the seven days is in the first instance required? You may infer that either from the fact that a special statement of the Torah was necessary to exclude it; or, if you wish, from the scriptural text itself, And the holy garments of Aaron shall be for his sons after him, to be anointed in them, and to be consecrated in them.18 In this passage the anointing and the donning of the larger number of garments are put on the same level. Hence, just as the donning of the larger number of garments is required for the seven days, so is the anointing obligatory for the seven days.
What is the reason of the man who holds that the forms prescribed for the ceremonies are indispensable?- R. Isaac b. Bisna said: Scripture reads And kaka [thus] shalt thou do to Aaron and his sons, — ‘thus means indispensableness.19 You may be right with regard to any
(1) Lev. I, 4; VIII, 18.
(2) Lev. I, 4.
(3) Lev. XVII, 11.
(4) Lit., ‘a remnant’.
(5) Lit., ‘as it did not atone for him and it did’. Technically the ceremony had achieved its purpose, because essentially it is the blood which makes atonement, but since laying the hands on the animal's head is part of the ceremony (although not essential to it) and he has been negligent about it, he has obtained atonement for himself, but has not attained re-atonement with his creator, whose command he has treated slightingly.
(6) Of part of the sacrifice, Lev. VIII, 27.
(7) Men. 93b.
(8) Lev. XIV, 21.
(9) If the separation of the priest were an indispensable part of the ceremony, the proposed substitute for the high priest would have to be separated too, so that in case of any mishap to the high priest he would enter upon the service properly prepared by separation. Since the Mishnah reads ‘prepared’ only, the separation obviously is not deemed indispensable.
(10) The eight garments of the high priest as against the four of the ordinary priest.
(11) Every one of the seven days the head and the eye-lids of the high priest were anointed with oil.
(12) Lev. XVI, 32.
(13) Obviously the service was to be performed by the high priest, why then this apparently superfluous passage?
(14) Ex. XXIX, 30.
(15) Of his consecration as high priest, v. infra.
(16) That is on the Day of Atonement.
(17) As long as he has been consecrated, even if some detail of the ceremony has been omitted.
(18) Ex. XXIX, 29.
(19) The emphatic expression ‘thus’ intimates the indispensableness of the prescribed forms, ‘thus’ and ‘not otherwise’.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 5b
form prescribed in this context . Whence do we know that forms not prescribed1 here in this context are also indispensable? — R. Nahman b. Isaac said: We infer that from [the fact that in both contexts the same word] petah [is used].2 R. Mesharsheya said: And keep the charge of the Lord3 indicates the indispensableness [of the prescribed forms]. R. Ashi said: For so am I commanded4 indicates indispensableness.
Our Rabbis taught:5 For so am I commanded,6 As I commanded,7 As the Lord commanded.8 [Of these passages], ‘For so am I commanded’ that they eat9 it whilst in mourning; ‘As I commanded’ [this] he said to them at the time10 of the occurrence;11 ‘As the Lord commanded’, and not on my own authority.
R. Jose b. Hanina said: Breeches are not mentioned in the section.12 But when it says, And this is the thing that thou shalt do unto them to hallow them, to minister,13 it includes the breeches and the tenth part of an ephah.14 It may rightly be said that breeches are included in the general term ‘garments’,15 but whence do we know about the tenth of an ephah? — [This we know] by inferring [the meaning of the word] zeh [used here]16 from zeh [in the verse], Zeh [this] is the offering of Aaron and his sons which they shall offer unto the Lord . . . the tenth part of an ephah.17
R. Johanan in the name of R. Simeon b. Yohai said: Whence do we know that also the reading of the portion18 was indispensable? To teach us that it is said, This is the dabar [thing] which the Lord has commanded to be done,19 i.e., the speaking20 thereof is indispensable. — In what order did he put the garments on them? — What is past, is past!21 Rather, [the question is] in what order will he put the garments on them in the future?22 — In the future, too,23 when Aaron and his sons will come, Moses will come with them. But [the question is] how did he put the clothes on them [if we are] to understand the scriptural account?24 -The sons of R. Hiyya and R. Johanan held different opinions about it. One said: Aaron was first clothed and afterwards his sons; whilst the other said: Aaron and his sons were clothed simultaneously. Said Abaye: With regard to the tunic and the mitre none disputes the fact that Aaron came first and his sons afterwards,25 for both in the [text containing] the command and [the account of the] actual performance Aaron is mentioned first. What they are disputing is [the order of] the girdle.26 He who says Aaron [came first] and then his sons [is of this opinion] because it is written, And he girded him with the girdle,27 and only after this is it written, And he girded them with a girdle,28 whereas he who holds that the girding took place without any interruption, [is of this opinion] because It is written, And thou shalt gird them with girdles, Aaron and his sons.29 According to the opinion that Aaron and his sons were girded at the same time, does not Scripture first say, ‘And he girded him with a girdle’ and then only later is it written, ‘And he girded them with a girdle’?30 —
(1) In Ex. XXIX, 5, there are Instructions relative to the Consecration, such as putting on Aaron the tunic, the robe of the ephod and the ephod, the breastplate, the mitre on his head, the holy crown on the mitre. These are not mentioned in the ceremony described in Lev. VIII.
(2) Ex. XXIX, 4 and Lev. VIII, 33.
(3) Lev. VIII, 35.
(4) Ibid. VIII, 35.
(5) Zeb. 101b.
(6) Lev. X, 13.
(7) Ibid.X, 18.
(8) Lev. X, 15
(9) Lev. X, 13: Take the meal-offering and eat it, this command contradicts Deut. XXVI, 14, I have not eaten thereof in my mourning. The answer is, ‘So am I commanded’, i.e., a special decision from God.
(10) The death of Nadab and Abihu, Lev. X, 2.
(11) When he found that the goat of the sin-offering had been burnt, he said to them, You should have eaten it ‘as I commanded you’ in regard to the meal-offering.
(12) Chapters VIII and IX of Lev. which deal with the Consecration.
(13) Ex. XXIX, 1.
(14) Which the priests are obliged to offer up on the day of their Consecration. V. Men. 51b.
(15) Ex. XXIX, 5: And thou shalt take the garments and put upon Aaron.
(16) Ex. XXIX, 1.
(17) Lev. VI, 13. The inference from similarity of expression is never used ‘for the purpose of deducing a new law from Scripture, but merely as an attempt to find a scriptural support for an opinion expressed by one of the authorities in the Mishnah’. Mielziner, Intro. 148.
(18) The section on the Consecration. It was to be read as part of the ceremony.
(19) Lev. VIII, 5’ Dabar may mean both ‘word’ and ‘thing’. No further reference to the ceremony being necessary, the suggestion is made that dabar, the word, the reading of the word is commanded. Support may be found in the fact that the preceding verse speaks of The congregation assembled at the door of the tent of meeting, such ‘assembly’ for the purpose of hearing scriptural reading being expressly enjoined in Deut. XXXI, 28 and esp. at the Sukkoth festival in the year of release.
(20) The word, i.e., the section read.
(21) There is no relevance in archaeological research.
(22) I.e.,in the Messianic future.
(23) There is no need for speculation. Moses will be in charge and he knows the law.
(24) There are apparent contradictions between the command as given in Ex. XXIX and the account of the ceremony in Lev. VIII respectively. In Ex. XXIX, 9: And thou shalt gird them with a girdle, Aaron and his sons intimates that this girding of father and sons took place in close succession to one another. I.e., he girded Aaron only after he had first clothed the sons with the other garments apart from the girdle, so that the girding of Aaron and his sons were, so to speak, at the same time (v. infra); whereas in Lev. VIII, 7: And girded him with the girdle and clothed him with the robe . . . and placed the breastplate upon him and set the mitre upon his head to be followed by ibid. v. 13: And Moses brought Aaron's sons and clothed them with tunics and girded them with girdles shows the girding of Aaron took place before the clothing of the sons had even begun.
(25) [Moses clothed Aaron with the tunic and the mitre before he began to clothe the sons with these garments. These would also include the breeches, as these were always to come first, v. infra 23b.]
(26) Whether Aaron was girded before or after the sons were clothed with the tunic and mitre.
(27) Lev. VIII, 7.
(28) Ibid. 13. I.e., after having first clothed them with the other garments.
(29) Ex. XXIX, 9.
(30) Cf. n. 4.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 6a
He will tell you: This is to teach you that the girdle of the high priest was not the same [material] as that of the average priest.1 According to the opinion that Aaron was girded and afterwards his sons,2 does not Scripture say, ‘And thou shalt gird them with a girdle’?- He will tell you this3 informs us that the girdle of the high priest was of the same [material] as the average priest. Was it then necessary to state: ‘And he girded him with a girdle’ and [then] ‘And he girded them’? From that we infer that Aaron came first and then his sons. But how could it have been possible simultaneously?4 — This only means to indicate that [Aaron] came first.5
THE HIGH PRIEST WAS REMOVED. Why was he removed?[You ask] why was he removed!6 [Is it not] as you have said, either according to the derivation of R. Johanan, or to that of Resh Lakish? — No, this is7 the question: Why was he separated from his house? — It was taught: R. Judah b. Bathyra said: Let his wife be found under doubt of being a menstruant and he have congress with her.8 Do we speak of wicked people?9 — Rather, perhaps he will have congress with his wife and she will then be found to be doubtfully a menstruant.10 [The Rabbis] were discussing the decision before R. Hisda: According to whom was it made?-Obviously according to R. Akiba, who said: A menstruant makes him who had congress with her impure [retrospectively].11 For, according to the Rabbis, behold they say: A menstruant does not render impure him who had congress with her [retrospectively]. R. Hisda said to them: It may be in accord even with the Rabbis. For they conflict with R. Akiba only in the case in which [the blood stains are found] much later12 [than the congress], but, [if they be found] very soon afterwards,13 they agree with him. R. Zera said: Hence it is evident that to one who had congress with a menstruant do not apply the same restrictions as do to the menstruant herself and he may bathe [for purification] in day time.14 For, if you were to say that to one who had congress with a menstruant applied the same laws that apply to her, when could he bathe? Only at night. How could he, then, officiate on the morrow,15 since he would have to await sunset for becoming ritually pure? Hence it must be [clear] that one who had intercourse with a menstruant is not subject to the same restrictions as the menstruant herself. Said R. Shimi of Nehardea: You might even say [that the above decision is in accord with the view] that one who has intercourse with a menstruant is like the menstruant, yet [would the high priest be able to officiate at the service] for we would separate him from his house an hour before sunset.16 An objection was raised: All those who are obliged to take the ritual bath must take the bath at night.17 A menstruant and a woman after confinement immerse during the day. A menstruant, then, only, but not one who had intercourse with her?18 — [No, it means], A menstruant and all whom one may include in that term.19 Another objection was raised: One to whom pollution has happened is like one who touched an unclean [dead] reptile. One who had intercourse with a menstruating woman is like one who was made unclean through a corpse.20 Is it not concerning the bath?21 — No, it is concerning [the conditions of] their uncleanness.22 But [surely] concerning their uncleanness23 there are direct statements in Scripture! In the first case it is written that it lasts for seven days,24 and in the second case also the seven days’ duration is prescribed.25
(1) The girdle as described in Ex. XXXIX, 29 was to be made of fine twined linen, and blue and purple and scarlet, the work of the weaver in colours. The separate mention made of Aaron's girdle and that of his sons serves to indicate that they were not alike and that this description referred to the girdle of the high priest alone: the girdle of other priests was made of lesser material.
(2) From which one may infer that they are to be girded simultaneously, ‘them’, i.e., together.
(3) The answer is: The emphasis is not on the time or interval, but on the fact that father and son shall be girded with the same girdle, no distinction being allowed between the girdles worn by high priest and ordinary priest respectively.
(4) Taking the word simultaneously literally (cf. p. 21, n. 13), the question is, How could Moses have girded five men simultaneously?
(5) The Torah does not command any simultaneity. Aaron is mentioned in one passage and his sons in another, in order to emphasize that he must come first-whether in the clothing of the garments or in the girding.
(6) The first question was misunderstood. The answer implies that the source of the commandment to remove the priest was being sought.
(7) What was really intended was the practical motive of the enactment.
(8) Tosef. Yoma I.
(9) No good Jew (v. Sheb. 18b; Shulhan Aruk, Yoreh Deah 184, 2) would approach his wife unless her ritual purity were beyond doubt, how much less a high priest. Hence such contingency is unthinkable. Dealing with high priests, are we dealing with wicked men?
(10) Bloodstains may be found on the bed after congress and the doubt would arise, whether the discharge occurred before or after congress. Such a doubt would render her husband impure for seven days and ritually unfit to enter the sanctuary.
(11) [For twenty-four hours, so that should the stain be found after congress, the husband would be considered unclean for seven days, v. Nid. 14a.]
(12) Lit., ‘after after’, v. next note.
(13) [Lit., ‘one after’ this interval is defined in Nid. 12b as time enough to get down from the bed and rinse her face
(14) A menstruant is not permitted to bathe during the seventh day of her menstrual impurity, but only at night, after sunset, the beginning of the eighth day. But he who had congress with her would be permitted to bathe during the seventh day, without having to await the sunset of the seventh day. Hence he needs to be separated for but seven days. And if on the day of the separation he had congress and the doubt of her being a menstruant arose, he would count from the day of the separation until the day before the Day of Atonement, when he would take the bath during the day, await the sunset, and then be fit to enter the sanctuary on the Day of Atonement (Rashi).
(15) He would ritually be impure at the night of the Day of Atonement, hence there would have been no sunset before the Day of Atonement when he was pure and he would be unfit to officiate on the following day; thus the whole separation would be futile.
(16) That is, on the even before the eighth day before the Day of Atonement. One hour is a very short period and unimportant, hence the separation would still be called ‘one of seven days’. He could bathe on the evening before the eve of the Day of Atonement (the seventh day after having become ritually impure) and be fit to officiate on the Day of Atonement, having awaited the sunset on the day before his bath.
(17) Meg. 20a, based on Num. XIX, 19, for the law that all may bathe during the day: And on the seventh day he shall purify him and bathe himself in water and be clean at even. — That a menstruant must not bathe before the night of the seventh day is inferred from Lev. XV,19: And if a woman have an issue, she shall be in her impurity seven days. A woman after confinement is compared to a menstruant in Lev. XII, 2: If a woman be delivered . . . , then she shall be unclean for seven days; as in the days of the impurity of her sickness shall she be unclean,; v. infra 88a
(18) Here would be a Tannaitic text invalidating an Amora's inference.
(19) Since the menstruant by contact communicates her impurity, it is logical to assume that the conditions of purification would be identical. Hence the implicit statement is sufficient.
(20) Zab. V, 11.
(21) That the bath could be taken in day-time.
(22) One to whom defilement has happened is like one who touched a dead reptile in that both become clean in the evening, and are unclean in the first degree of uncleanness; and he who had intercourse with a menstruant is afflicted with uncleanness for seven days and is one of the original causes of uncleanness like him who was made unclean through a corpse.
(23) I.e., that of one who has intercourse with a menstruant.
(24) Lev. XV, 24. Her impurity be upon him, he shall be unclean seven days.
(25) Num. XIX, 11: He that toucheth the dead, even any man's dead body, shall be unclean seven days.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 6b
Must one not hence assume that the comparison concerns their bath?1 No, indeed it refers only to [the conditions of] their uncleanness, and it was necessary to mention that only because of the latter clause [of that Mishnah, viz.,] that one who had intercourse with a menstruant is afflicted with a graver form of impurity than he [who has become unclean through a corpse] in that he causes uncleanness of couch and seat2 [such uncleanness being of a lighter nature] so as to affect only foods and liquids.3
Come and hear:4 For R. Hiyya taught: A man or a woman afflicted with gonorrhoea or with leprosy, one who had intercourse with a menstruant, and one made unclean through a corpse, may take the bath during the day; a menstruant and a woman after confinement take their bath at night.5 This is [indeed] a refutation.6 Now whilst removing him from the [possible] impurity due to his house,7 remove him from the [possibility of] uncleanness through a corpse!8 R. Tahlifa, father of R. Huna, said in the name of Raba: This teaches that in the case of a community [the law of] corpse uncleanness is inoperative.9 Rabina said: You might also say that [the law of] corpse uncleanness is only suspended in case of a community,10 yet uncleanness due to contact with a corpse Is infrequent,11 whereas uncleanness due to marital life happens often. It has been said: As [to the law of] corpse-uncleanness R. Nahman said: It is inoperative in case of a community. R. Shesheth said: It is only suspended in case of an entire community. Whenever there are in the same priestly family-division12 men, both clean and unclean ones, nobody disputes the fact that the clean ones do the service and the unclean ones forego it. The dispute concerns only the question as to whether one is obliged to make an endeavour to obtain, clean ones from another family-division. R. Nahman said: [The law of] corpse-uncleanness is inoperative In case of a community, hence we need make no such effort. R. Shesheth says: That law is only suspended in case of a community and hence we must endeavour [to find clean priests for the service].
Some hold that even in a case in which there are both clean and unclean priests in the same family-division, R. Nahman insists that even the unclean ones may officiate
(1) Since a statement as to the duration of their uncleanness, from its express form in the Torah, seems superfluous. But such repetition is illogical and hence the interpretation that it applies to the bathing is justified which proves that he who has intercourse with the menstruant may immerse by day.
(2) [As many couches as are under him become unclean although they had not been in direct contact with him, which is not the case with one who suffers corpse-uncleanness. He defiles only those couches which his body actually touches.]
(3) All original causes of uncleanness (אבות הטומאה) render, by touch, man and vessels unclean, whereas the derived first and second and third causes affect only foods and liquids, but neither human beings nor ‘vessels’ (apparel, etc.).
(4) This phrase in our case introduces a refutation.
(5) Infra 88a.
(6) This Tannaitic tradition is beyond the argument of any Amora. The refutation is complete.
(7) l.e., his wife.
(8) Keep away from him every company, lest someone die whilst in the same room with the high priest and render him unclean for seven days.
(9) Lit., ‘permissible’.
(10) It is only suspended as by emergency and every effort is due to effect a proper service in its stead.
(11) Hence no precautionary measures, such as, so to speak, quarantining the priest, are necessary.
(12) Beth-Ab. V. Glos.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 7a
because the Torah has rendered all levitical impurity caused through a corpse inoperative in case of a community.1
R. Shesheth said: Whence do I know that?2 Because it has been taught: If the priest was standing and offering up the sheaf of the ‘Omer3 and it became unclean in his hands4 let him tell and another one is brought in its place. And if there be none but this, one would say to him: ‘Be clever and keep quiet’.5 At all events he teaches, He should tell about it and another one is brought in its place!6 — R. Nahman said: I admit7 that where there is a remnant to be eaten [one would have to make an effort to procure a substitute sacrifice].8 Another objection was raised: If he was offering up the meal-offering of the bullocks or rams or sheep, and it became unclean in his hand, he should say so and one brings another one in its place; but if there be none [available] but the first, one tells him, ‘Be wise and keep quiet’ .9 Does this not refer to the bullocks, rams and sheep offered up on the feast [of Sukkoth]?10 — R. Nahman win answer you: No, the word ‘bullock’ refers to the bullock offered up in expiation of idolatry,11 and although it is a community sacrifice, since there is no definite time fixed for it, one endeavours [to find a substitute offering]; the word ‘rams’ refers to the ram of Aaron12 and although it is appointed to be sacrificed at a definite time, yet, since it is the offering of an individual, one endeavours [to procure a substitute]; the word ‘lambs’ refers to the lamb offered up together with the ‘Omer-sheaf, of which13 there are remnants to be eaten. — Another objection was raised:14 If [sacrificial] blood became unclean and one sprinkled it, if by mistake, it is accepted;15 if wilfully, it is not accepted!16 — This teaching refers to the sacrifice of an individual. Come and hear: For what [mistake at sacrifice] does the priest's plate17 effect pardon?18 Concerning blood, flesh, fat, which become unclean, whether by mistake or wilfully, whether by accident or voluntarily,19 whether [the sacrifice] was offered up by an individual or by the entire community.20 Now if it enter your mind that the law of uncleanness is inoperative in case of a community, what need is there for [the priest's plate] to effect pardon?- R. Nahman will answer you: What has been taught about the plate's effecting pardon, refers only to the sacrifice of an individual. Or, if you like, one might say, it refers also to such community sacrifices for which no definite time has been set. — Another objection was raised:20 [Touching on] And Aaron shall bear the iniquity committed in the holy things. Does he bear any kind of iniquity? If you mean the iniquity of piggul [ — a sacrifice rejectable21 because of the intended disposal beyond the legal limits of space], concerning this Scripture has said already, It will not be accepted.22 If you mean the iniquity of nothar,23 concerning that Scripture has said already, It shall not be imputed!24
(1) The source is Num. IX, 10: If any person . . . shall be unclean by reason of a dead body or be in a journey afar off, he could postpone the offering up of his paschal lamb until the fourteenth of the month of Iyar. From this R. Shesheth infers that a person (an individual) is suspended (postpones the celebration of Passover), but not a community. Pes. 66b.
(2) That the law is only suspended, not inoperative.
(3) V. GIos.
(4) The rendering in our text seems defective. In Men. 72a it reads: If he was standing and offering up the flour-offering of the ‘Omer and it became unclean, if there is another (available), he may say to him, — bring the other’ in its place. And if not he says to him — ‘Be clever and keep quiet’. The Tosef. reads: If he offered up the ‘Omer and it became unclean he tells it and one brings another one in its place. If there be none besides the first, one says to him, ‘Be clever and keep quiet about it’.
(5) Since no substitute is available, silence is wisdom, for the priest's frontplate procures forgiveness for such mishap. V. infra.
(6) Hence it is clear that even in the case of a community the law concerning corpse-uncleanness is but suspended, not rendered inoperative, which contradicts R. Nahman.
(7) Although a communal sacrifice may indeed be offered up also in a state of congregational impurity, it may not be eaten in a state of impurity. V. Pes. 77b.
(8) In the case of an ‘Omer offering, where the priest takes a fistful, I admit that remnants to be consumed must be consumed in cleanliness.
(9) This text is apparently taken from the Tosef. Men. II, yet in that text the word for ‘rams’ is omitted.
(10) V. Num. XXIX, 12ff. These are community sacrifices, with a definite time appointed for them, yet the law of impurity is only suspended, for ‘one brings another one in its place’.
(11) The passage in Num. XV, 22f: And when ye shall err and not observe all these commandments, then it shall be, if done in error by the congregation . . . that all the congregation shall offer up one bullock for a burnt-offering, is assumed to refer to the main and most potent error: idolatry.
(12) Offered up on the Day of Atonement.
(13) The meal-offering brought with the ‘Omer lamb, of which a fistful was taken by the priest and the remnants eaten.
(14) V. Pes. 16b.
(15) And the flesh thereof may be eaten.
(16) [In so far that the flesh may not be eaten, though pardon is effected by means of the priest's plate (v. infra). This proves that the law of uncleanness does operate in the case of a community (which is apparently included in the general terms of this teaching).]
(17) The source is Ex. XXVIII, 36-38: And thou shalt make a plate of pure gold and engrave upon it, like the engravings of a signet: HOLY OF THE LORD. And thou shalt put it on a thread of blue, and it shall be upon the mitre: upon the forefront of the mitre it shall be. And it shall be upon Aaron's forehead and Aaron shall bear the iniquity committed in the holy things which the children of Israel hallow.
(18) Lit., ‘Make (the sacrifice) acceptable.’
(19) The word רצון (free-will) after מזיד (wilfully) is tautologous, but it is a matter of Talmudic style, since אנם (accident) is mentioned, its opposite is also included, illustratively rather than logically.
(20) Men. 25b.
(21) Lev. VII, 18: And if any of the flesh of the sacrifice of his peace-offerings (which according to the preceding verse may be eaten only in the day that it is offered on and on the morrow) be at all eaten on the third day, it shall not be accepted, neither shall it be imputed unto him that offereth it: it shall be an abhorred thing (piggul) and the soul that eateth of it shall bear his iniquity. The term piggul although generally denoting the intention in the mind of the officiating priest to dispose of the sacrifice beyond the proper time (חוץ לזמנה) signifies here according to Rashi the intended disposal thereof beyond the legal limits of space, (חוץ למקומו). V. Zeb. 28a. Tosaf. explains differently.
(22) V. note 5.
(23) [Lit., ‘left over’,generally portions of sacrifice left over beyond the legal time and here with the special meaning of the intended disposal of the sacrifice beyond the legal time, so Rashi.]
(24) Lev. VII, 18.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 7b
Is it not hence that there is no iniquity which he bears except that concerning levitical uncleanness which has been declared inoperative in its general rule whenever a community sacrifice is involved, and the difficulty remains for R. Shesheth?1 Concerning this matter the Tannaim differ,2 for it has been taught:3 The front plate effects pardon4 whether it be on the high priest's forehead or not; these are the words of R. Simeon. R. Judah said: As long as it is on his forehead it effects pardon, if it is not on his forehead, it does not effect pardon. R. Simeon said to him: The case of the high priest on the Day of Atonement proves [your contention wrong], for the plate5 is then not on his forehead and yet it effects pardon — R. Judah answered him: Leave the case of the high priest on the Day of Atonement alone, for to him, because the community is concerned ,6 the law of uncleanness has been rendered inoperative. Hence it is to be inferred that according to R. Simeon7 the law of uncleanness is only suspended in case of a community.8
Abaye said: If the front plate was broken there is no conflicting opinion, all agreeing that it effects no pardon . The dispute concerns only the case when it is hung up on a peg, R. Judah holding, And it shall be upon the forehead [of Aaron] and he shall bear,9 whilst R. Simeon bases his opinion on, And it shall be continually upon his forehead, that they may be accepted before the Lord.10 Now what does ‘continually’ mean? Shall I say that it shall indeed be continually on his forehead? How is that possible? Must he not enter the privy11 occasionally, must he not sleep at times?11 Rather must it all imply that [the front plate] ‘continually’12 effects pardon. According to R. Judah,13 does not Scripture say ‘continually’?14 — That word implies that he should never dismiss it from his mind;15 this is in agreement with Rabbah son of Huna, for Rabbah son of Huna said: A man is obliged to touch his tefillin16 every hour. This may be learned by inference ad majus from the front plate.
(1) Who holds that that law is only suspended, not abrogated, where a community sacrifice is involved.
(2) So that R. Shesheth may have the benefit of the support of the Tanna whose opinion he held.
(3) Pes. 77a.
(4) For uncleanness of a sacrifice.
(5) On that day, when the high priest enters the Holy of Holies, he doffs his golden garments, including the front plate, and wears simple linen.
(6) He offers up the sacrifice to make atonement for the whole congregation.
(7) Who opposes the view of R. Judah.
(8) And it is the front plate that effects the pardon. This is the dispute of the Tannaim.
(9) Ex. XXVII, 38.
(10) Ibid., the pardon dependent upon the high priest's bearing the plate.
(11) Respect for the holy garment would necessitate its removal at that time.
(12) The evidence of the text seems to favour R. Simeon's interpretation.
(13) Not only does his own interpretation appear wrong when confronted with R. Simeon's argument.
(14) The word ‘continually’, which cannot be referred to the wearing of the plate, needs must be applied to its efficacy.
(15) Not the outward efficacy of the plate; the attitude of the high priest towards its function is what the Torah prescribes here.
(16) Originally the tefillin were worn all day. V. Shab. 130a.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 8a
If touching the front plate, on which the mention [of God] is but inscribed once,1 the Torah prescribes ‘And it shall be continually upon his forehead,’ i.e., he shall not dismiss it from his mind, how much more does this apply to the tefillin which contain the mention [of God] many a time!2 But according to R. Simeon who says the front plate effects pardon always, does not Scripture intimate [in the passage], ‘On the forehead [of Aaron] and he shall bear’ [that the effecting of pardon depends on his bearing the plate]?- No, that passage merely serves to indicate the place of the plate. Whence does R. Judah know that there is a definite place prescribed for the front plate?3 He infers that from ‘On his forehead’. Why should not R. Simeon infer it from the passage too?4 -Indeed he does. Then how does he interpret On the forehead [of Aaron] and he shall bear’?- He will tell you: [It means to say that] whatsoever is fit to rest ‘on the forehead’, can effect pardon, whatsoever is not fit to rest on the forehead cannot effect it. This excludes a broken plate, which, indeed, cannot effect a pardon. Whence now does R. Judah infer the law concerning a broken plate? — He derives it from the [fact that instead of] ‘the forehead’ the text has ‘his forehead’.5 R.Simeon, however, does not attach any significance to [the words] ‘the forehead’, [and] ‘his forehead’.6
Are the above Tannaim disputing the principle of the following Tannaim? For it has been taught: On both of them7 throughout the seven days they would sprinkle from all the sin-offerings8 that were there;9 these are the words of R. Meir. R. Jose said: They sprinkled him only on the third and seventh days. R. Hanina, the deputy high priest10 said: The priest that was to burn the red heifer they sprinkled on each of the seven days, but the high priest that was to officiate on the Day of Atonement was sprinkled only on the third and seventh day.11 Is it not that their difference rests on this principle: R. Meir holds the law concerning ritual uncleanness to be only suspended in the case of community, whilst R. Jose considers it inoperative in that case.12 But how can you understand the case of a community?13 If R. Jose holds that the law concerning ritual uncleanness is inoperative in case of a community, why is any sprinkling necessary? — Rather, you must assume that all agree that these Tannaim hold that law to be only suspended in case of a community and the point of issue here between them is this: R. Meir holds that we say that it is obligatory14 for the ritual immersion to be taken in its proper time,15 and R. Jose holds we do not say that it is obligatory for the ritual immersion to be taken in its proper time.15 But does R. Jose hold that we do not maintain that it is obligatory for the ritual immersion to take place in its proper time? Surely, it has been taught: One who has the name [of God] inscribed on his flesh must not bathe16 nor anoint himself nor stand at a place of filth. If he happens to have an obligatory ritual bath, he should place reed grass on that part and thus bathe.17 R. Jose says: He may go down to bathe as usual, provided he does not rub that part.18 And it is established that they are disputing the question as to whether it is obligatory for a ritual immersion to take place in its proper time; the first Tanna holding we do not say that it is obligatory for a ritual immersion to be taken in its proper time, and R. Jose affirming that we do say that it is obligatory for a ritual immersion to be taken in its proper place.19 — Rather: Everybody agrees that those two Tannaim20 both hold we do say that it is obligatory for a ritual immersion to be taken in its proper time, and their dispute above concerns the following principle: R. Meir is of the opinion that we compare21 the [law concerning] ‘sprinkling’ to [that concerning] the immersion22 and R. Jose holds we do not compare ‘sprinkling’ to immersion’. What about R. Hanina, the deputy high priest? If he compares ‘sprinkling’ to ‘immersion’, the high priest on the Day of Atonement too [should be sprinkled on every day]. And if he does not compare ‘sprinkling’ to ‘immersion’ the priest who burns the heifer [should] neither [be sprinkled on every day]? — In truth he does not make that comparison, the enactment23 touching the priest who burns the heifer being a mere special stringency.24
According to whose opinion is the following teaching: There is no difference between the priest who burns the heifer and the high priest on the Day of Atonement except
(1) In the inscription ‘HOLY UNTO THE LORD’.
(2) In the four excerpts from the Torah, which they contain. Hence the obligation to touch tefillin all the time, as a reminder of the lessons they convey.
(3) Since he interprets ‘On the forehead and he shall bear’ as indicating interdependence of pardon and plate, whence does he know the place of the plate?- Perhaps it may be worn elsewhere too.
(4) The passage is simple and direct enough and untouched by the controversy.
(5) In the phrase ‘On his forehead continually’, R. Judah derives the law of the broken plate from the use of the possessive.
(6) There is nothing abnormal calling for special attention in the use of the possessive.
(7) V. supra p. 12 notes.
(8) With water from the ashes.
(9) Which remained from red heifers from the time of Moses until that period (Bertinoro). V. also Parah III, 5. From the ashes of every heifer some part was kept for future use.
(10) Segan. V. Sanh., Sonc. ed. p. 91, n. 1.
(11) Cf. Num. XIX, 19.
(12) Which shows that R. Jose and R. Meir differ on the same principle as R. Judah and R. Simeon.
(13) Lit.,’Can you hold that opinion?’
(14) Mizwah may mean ‘commandment’, ‘good deed’, ‘ought’, ‘is obligatory’.
(15) [On the day prescribed by the law, and the same applies to the sprinkling which for the reason explained infra must take place every day.]
(16) Lest he blot out the name of God.
(17) Lest he blot out ‘the name of God.
(18) V. Shab. 120b.
(19) From here it would appear that R. Jose held the ritual bath should be taken as soon as it is due.
(20) R. Meir and R. Jose.
(21) Lit., ‘analogy’, ‘comparison’, usually based on the close connection of two subjects in one and the same passage of the Torah. Arguments from Hekkesh are, in general, regarded as being more conclusive than those from Gezerah Shawah, the former not admitting of refutation. Both could be applied only for the purpose of supporting a traditional law. Mielziner, l.c.
(22) Cf. supra p. 12.
(23) That he be sprinkled on the third and fifth days.
(24) As to the stringency v. p. 10, n. 2, but even so the sprinkling was not indispensable on any definite day; all that was prohibited was too long an interval between the first and the second sprinkling (Rashi).
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 8b
that the latter is removed for the purpose of sanctity,1 and his fellow priests were permitted to touch him, whilst the former is removed for purposes of ritual and his colleagues forbidden to touch him. According to whom [is this teaching]? According to the opinion either of R. Meir or of R. Jose. For if it were in accord with the opinion of R. Hanina, deputy high priest, there would be one more point of difference.2
R. Jose, the son of R. Hanina demurred to this: It is quite right that we sprinkle him on the first day,3 because that may be the third of his impurity; similarly on the second, because that may be the third day of his impurity; on the third, because that may be the third day of his impurity; on the fifth, because that may be the seventh day of his impurity; on the sixth, because that may be the seventh day of his impurity; on the seventh, because that may be the seventh day of his impurity. But on the fourth day why should there be any sprinkling at all? That day could not be in doubt as being either the third day4 or the seventh day5 of his impurity? — But, according to your own point of view, how can there be sprinkling throughout the seven days? For have we not an established rule that the sprinkling is forbidden as shebuth6 and as such cannot override the Sabbath?7 — But you must then needs say: ‘Seven days with the exception of the Sabbath’, similarly here, ‘Seven8 with the exception of the fourth day.’ Rabah said: For that reason since the matter of the high priest on the Day of Atonement does not depend on us but on the fixing of the calendar,9 he ought to be separated on the third of Tishri, and on whatever day the third of Tishri falls, we would remove him; but as to the priest who burns the heifer, since the matter depends on us,10 we should remove him on the fourth of the week, so that his fourth day would fall on the Sabbath.
TO THE CELL OF THE COUNSELLORS etc. R. Judah said, Was it the ‘cell of the parhedrin [counsellors], was it not rather the ‘cell of the buleute11 [senators]’? Originally, indeed, it was called the ‘cell of the buleute’ but because money12 was being paid13 for the purpose of obtaining the position of high priest and the [high priests] were changed every twelve14 months, like those counsellors, who are changed every twelve months,15 therefore it came to be called ‘the cell of the counsellors’.
We learnt elsewhere: upon the bakers16 the Sages imposed only the duty of setting apart17 enough for the heave-offering of tithe18 and hallah.19 Now, it is quite right [that they did not impose] the great heave-offering, because it has been taught:
(1) As the high priest was about to enter the sanctuary, he was removed from all, in order that he may, in solitude, take upon himself the holiness of the day, shed all pride of office and concentrate on his great responsibility viz.,to obtain forgiveness of sin for Israel. As for the priest of the heifer, v. p. 2, n. 2.
(2) For according to R. Hanina, there is this additional difference that the high priest is sprinkled on the third and seventh day only, whereas the priest who is to burn the heifer is sprinkled on each of the seven days.
(3) Of the priest's separation, Num. XIX, 19: And the clean person shall sprinkle upon the unclean person on the third day, and on the seventh day; and on the seventh day shall he purify him. Ibid. 12: But if he purify himself not on the third day and on the seventh day, he shall not be clean.
(4) For, since he became separated he did not touch a corpse.
(5) For if the fourth day of his separation were the seventh day of his impurity, then the day before his separation would needs have been the third day of his impurity, and not having been sprinkled on that day, he could not be sprinkled on the seventh day of his impurity (the fourth day of his separation) for a first sprinkling on the third day of the impurity is indispensable for the second sprinkling on the seventh day.
(6) Lit., ‘rest’, work forbidden by the Rabbis on the Sabbath and festivals as being out of spirit with the ceremony of the day.
(7) I.e., the prohibition of work on the Sabbath. Pes. 65a.
(8) ‘Seven’ must be understood to mean exceptis excipiendis, with the exception of those days on which the sprinkling is not lawful or not necessary.
(9) Lit., ‘month’. His entering the sanctuary on the Day of Atonement on the tenth of Tishri depends only on the fixing of the new moon by the Sanhedrin (Cf. Sanh. 2a), from which the tenth would be counted.
(10) There is no definite time prescribed for the burning of the red heifer.
(11) [**, the members of the **, the administrative body of the city of Jerusalem. V. Buchler, Synedrion p. 232.]
(12) To the Hasmonean kings and their satellites.
(13) [So Rashi cur. ed. (lit.,) ‘they gave money for it’ etc. The phrase ‘for it’ (ץליו) is obscure.]
(14) This is not to be taken literally. On an average, as the Talmud tells later on, these high priests lasted twelve months, no longer. [MS.M. reads: ‘They were changed by Heaven’. I.e., they did not survive the twelve months. Others: ‘They were removed by the king when a higher price was offered him for the priesthood.’ Rashi reads: ‘They changed it,’ ‘it’ referring to the chamber. Each new priest on his accession would set up a new chamber for himself.]
(15) Rashi: The king removed his counsellors annually.
(16) Bakers who were ‘Fellows’ of the pharisaic order. As such they had to undertake scrupulous observance especially of the laws of levitical purity. The haberim (fellows) were distinguished from the great mass of the ‘ame ha-arez, the untrained multitude, who were suspects as to levitical purity and also as to the payment of tithe. V. infra.
(17) From the doubtfully tithed fruit which they had brought of the ‘amme ha-aretz.
(18) Terumath Ma'aser. V. Glos. s.v. terumah. Terumah Gedolah. V. Glos. s.v. terumah.
(19) The priest's share of the dough. V. Demai II, 4.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 9a
Because he1 sent into all the districts of Israel and he found that they2 were separating only the great heave-offering;3 [it is also right that the Sages did not impose upon these bakers] the first tithe and the poor man's tithe,4 because [of the principle that] the claimant must produce evidence;5 but the second tithe, let then [the baker] separate, take it up to Jerusalem and eat it there! ‘Ulla said: Because these parhedrin6 were beating them all the twelve months7 and telling them ‘sell cheap, sell cheap,’ the Sages did not burden them [to set apart the second tithe and take it up to Jerusalem].8 What does parhedrin mean? — Porase [managers].9 Rabbah b. Bar Hana said: What is the meaning of the passage, The fear of the Lord prolongeth days,’ but the years of the wicked shall be shortened?10 ‘The fear of the Lord prolongeth days’ refers to the first Sanctuary, which remained standing for four hundred and ten years and in which there served only eighteen11 high priests. ‘But the years of the wicked shall be shortened’10 refers to the second Sanctuary, which abided for four hundred and twenty years and at which more than three hundred [high] priests served . Take off therefrom the forty years which Simeon the Righteous served,12 eighty years which Johanan the high priest served,13 ten, which Ishmael b. Fabi14 served, or, as some say, the eleven years of R. Eleazar b. Harsum.15 Count [the number of high priests] from then on and you will find that none of them completed his year [in office].16 R. Johanan b. Torta17 said: Why was Shiloh18 destroyed? Because of two [evil] things that prevailed there, immorality and contemptuous treatment of sanctified objects. [Proof that] immorality prevailed because it is written, Now Eli was very old, and he heard all that his sons did unto Israel, and how that they lay with the women that did service at the door of the tent of meeting. Notwithstanding R. Samuel b. Nahmani who said in the name of R. Johanan: Whosoever says, The sons of Eli sinned19 is but mistaken; it is
(1) Johanan, the high priest.
(2) The great mass of the people, exclusive of the Haberim. V. Glos. s.v. haber.
(3) V. Sot. 48a.
(4) The first tithe belonged to the Levite and was due annually; the second tithe was to be consumed by the owner in Jerusalem, annually; the third tithe was due every third year-it was the poor man's tithe.
(5) The heave-offering of the tithe, like the terumah (v. Glos.) itself, was, on penalty of death through divine action, forbidden to be eaten by a non-priest. With regard to the poor man's tithe, the baker could say: If you want to assert legal claim thereto, you will have to prove that the ‘am ha-arez, from whom I bought it, has failed to give tithe thereof before he sold it to me. Unless such proof was forthcoming, there was no legal claim on the part of the Levite on the non-Levite poor to its possession.
(6) Paredroi-assessors, counsellors. The Mishnah J. reads paledroi. The Tosef. paredroi. These assessors had a bad reputation from their oppressive measures at the market places, over which, as commissioners, they had jurisdiction. So that, apart from the fact that the high priests, during the second Temple, were changed as often as these officials, the fact that they were dubbed paredroi indicates that there must have been more than one point of contact between these officials and the priests.
(7) Usually their office was of twelve months’ duration. As the next line shows, these officials made full use of their twelve months’ opportunity for abuse of power.
(8) The Sages preferred to give the baker haberim the benefit of the doubt that the ‘amme ha-arez, as a rule, do give the tithe.
(9) Cf. "**, supervisor, purser, collector, which is logical rather than etymological.
(10) Prov. X, 27.
(11) [Var. lec., eight priests. Cf. I Chron. V, 36ff. Jehozadak who was taken to exile not being counted. V. Tosaf. s.v. ולא and Rashi I Chron. V, 36.]
(12) Simeon the Just, High Priest Simon I, c. 300 b.c.e. ‘ v. Aboth, Sonc. ed., p. 2.
(13) John Hyrcanus, the Hasmonean high priest (Jastrow). V. Ber. He succeeded Simeon the Righteous as high priest (Bertinoro, Ma'as. Sh., 5, end). After eighty years serving as high priest he became a Sadducee (Ber. 29a). That makes it difficult to identify him with John Hyrcanus.
(14) V. Tosef. cf. Yoma 1. [High priest in the days of Agrippa II. He is not to be confused with the high priest of the same name who is reported by Josephus (Wars VI 2, 2) to have been executed in Cyrene after the destruction of the Temple. V. Buchler. op. cit. p. 98.]
(15) V. ibid. I. The Tosef. reads Harsoth. In Yoma 35b he is described as a model rich man who forsook his financial interests to devote himself to the Torah.
(16) Bah, in his marginal notes, inserts on the basis of text on parallel passages the following interpolation here: R, Johanan b. Torta said: ‘And why all that? Because they bought the priestly office for money, for R. Assi reported that Martha, the daughter of Boethus, brought King Jannai two kabful of denars to nominate Joshua b. Gamala as one of the high priests. And R. Johanan b. Torta said (further). The same statement is made, infra 18a, in the name of R. Assi. (17) An interesting account of Torta is given in the Pesik. Rab. XIV: (tortah being taken as the feminine of tora, hence cow. It occurs in this form in the Targum Num. XIX, 2.) He said: If a cow that has no speech and no mind, recognized her Creator, should I, whom my Maker created in His image, not go and acknowledge Him. He became a Jew, studied, grew efficient in the Torah and they named him Johanan b. Torta.
(18) The seat of the Tabernacle after the conquest.
(19) As the text indicates. The same apologetics are elsewhere used to defend Reuben, the sons of Samuel, David, Solomon. (Shab. 55b).
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 9b
because they delayed offering up their sacrificial1 birds Scripture accounts it to them as if they had lain with them. The [sacred] offerings were treated contemptuously, as it is written,2 Yea, before the fat was made to smoke, the priest's servant came and said to the man that sacrificed: ‘ Give flesh to roast for the priest,’ for he will not have sodden flesh of thee, but raw.’ And if the man said unto him: ‘Let the fat be made to smoke first of all, and then take as much as thy soul desireth’: then he would say: ‘Nay, but thou shalt give it me now, and if not, I will take it by force. ‘ And the sin of the young men was very great before the Lord, — for the men dealt contemptuously with the offering of the Lord.
Why was the first Sanctuary destroyed? Because of three [evil] things which prevailed there: idolatry, immorality, bloodshed. Idolatry, as it is written: For the bed is too short for a man to stretch himself and the covering too narrow when he gathereth himself up.3 What is the meaning of ‘For the bed is too short for a man to stretch himself’? R. Jonathan said: It is: This bed4 is too short for two neighbours to stretch themselves. And [what is the meaning of] ‘the covering too narrow when he gathereth himself up’? — R. Samuel b. Nahmani said: When R. Jonathan [in his reading] came to this passage, he would cry and say: To Him , concerning Whom it is written, He gathereth the waters of the sea together like a heap,5 the cover became too narrow! Immorality [prevailed] as it is written: Moreover the Lord said: Because the daughters of Zion are haughty, and walk with stretched-forth necks and wanton eyes, walking and mincing as they go, and make a tinkling with their feet.6 ‘Because the daughters of Zion are haughty’, i.e., they used to walk with proud carriage. ‘And wanton eyes’ i.e., they filled their eyes with kohl.7 ‘Walking and mincing as they go’, i.e. , they used to walk with the heel touching the toe. ‘And make a tinkling with their feet’, R. Isaac said: They would take myrrh and balsam and place it in their shoes8 and when they came near the young men of Israel they would kick, causing the balsam to squirt at them and would thus cause the evil desire to enter them like an adder's poison.
Bloodshed [prevailed] as it is written: Moreover Manaseh shed innocent blood very much, till he had filled Jerusalem from one end to another.9 They were wicked, but they placed their trust in the Holy One, blessed be He.10 For it is written, The heads thereof judge for reward, and the priests thereof teach for hire, and the prophets thereof divine for money; yet will they lean upon the Lord and say ‘Is not the Lord in the midst of us? No evil shall come upon us’.11 Therefore the Holy One, blessed be He, brought them three evil decrees as against the three evils which were their own:12 Therefore shall Zion for your sake be plowed as a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps and the mountain of the house as the high places of a forest. But why was the second Sanctuary destroyed, seeing that in its time they were occupying themselves with Torah, [observance of] precepts, and the practice of charity? Because therein prevailed hatred without cause. That teaches you that groundless hatred is considered as of even gravity with the three sins of idolatry, immorality, and bloodshed together . And [during the time of] the first Sanctuary did no groundless hatred prevail? Surely it is written: They are thrust down to the sword with my people; smite therefore upon my thigh,13 and R. Eleazar said: This refers to people who eat and drink together and then thrust each other through with the daggers of their tongue! — That [passage] speaks of the princes in Israel, for it is written , Cry and wail, son of man; for it is upon my people,13 etc. [The text reads] ‘Cry and wail, son of man’. One might have assumed [it is upon] all [Israel], therefore it goes on, Upon all the princes of Israel.
R. Johanan and R. Eleazar both say: The former ones whose iniquity was revealed14 had their end15 revealed, the latter ones whose iniquity was not revealed have their end still unrevealed.
R. Johanan said: The fingernail of the earlier generations16 is better than the whole17 body of the later generations. Said Resh Lakish to him: On the contrary, the latter generations are better,18 although they are oppressed by the governments, they are occupying themselves with the Torah .- He [R. Johanan] replied: The Sanctuary will prove [my point] for it came back to the former generations, but not to the latter ones.
The question was put to R. Eleazar: Were the earlier generations better, or the later ones? — He answered: Look upon the Sanctuary! Some say he answered: The Sanctuary is your witness [in this matter].19
Resh Lakish was swimming in the Jordan. Thereupon Rabbah b. Bar Hana came and gave him the hand:20 Said [Resh Lakish] to him: By God! I hate you. For it is written: If she be a wall, we will build upon her a turret of silver; if she be a door, we will enclose her with boards of cedar.21 Had you made yourself like a wall and had all come up in the days of Ezra, you would have been compared to silver, which no rottenness can ever affect. Now that you have come up like doors,22 you are like cedarwood, which rottenness prevails over. What is erez [‘cedar’]?- ‘Ulla said: It is sasmagor.23 What is ‘sasmagor’?-R. Abba says it is the divine24 voice as it has been taught: After the later prophets Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi had died, the Holy Spirit25 departed from Israel, but they still availed themselves of the Bath Kol.26 — But did Resh Lakish talk with Rabbah b. Bar Hana?27 Even with R. Eleazar, who was the master of the land of Israel, Resh Lakish did not converse28 [for anyone with whom Resh Lakish conversed in the street could get merchandise without witnesses]29 would he engage in conversation with Rabbah b. Bar Hana?-R. Papa said: ‘Throw a man between them’.30 It was either Resh Lakish and Ze'iri or Rabbah b. Bar Hana and R. Eleazar.31 When he [Resh Lakish] came before R. Johanan , he said to him: This is not the reason.32 Even if they had all come up in the time of Ezra, the Divine Presence would not have rested over the second Sanctuary, for it is written:33 God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem, [that means],
(1) Lev. XII, 8.
(2) I Sam. li, 15-17.
(3) Isa. XXVIII, 20.
(4) Manasseh the faithless king, introduced idols into the very Sanctuary. There was no room for the God of Israel, together with an idol, in his one Sanctuary.
(5) Ps. XXXIII, 7. The ad hoc exposition here is either: ‘On his cover (the idol) became His rival,’ or ‘The cover itself, used for idolatrous purposes, thus became His rival,’ the cover here standing for the Sanctuary.
(6) Isa. III, 16.
(7) A powder used for painting the eyelids, stibium (Jastrow).
(8) Bah interpolates here: and walking around in the streets of Jerusalem and when they came near etc., v. D.S.
(9) II Kings XXI, 16.
(10) The text as it stands is in need of correction. The present rearrangement based on text in parallel passages (v. D.S.) is adopted by Bah. [Cur. edd. insert: ‘This refers to the first Sanctuary’. This, on the rearrangement of the text adopted
(v. n. 5), is evidently superfluous. V. D.S.]
(11) Micah III, 11.
(12) Ibid. 12.
(13) Ezek. XXI, 17.
(14) ‘Who did not hide their misdeeds’ (Rashi).
(15) I.e., the end of their captivity. Jer. XXIX, 10: For thus saith the Lord: After seventy years are accomplished in Babylon, I will remember you and perform My good word to you, in causing you to return to this place.
(16) The earlier generations are, of course, those of the first Temple, the later ones Israel since the second destruction.
(17) Lit. , ‘the belly’.
(18) Or ‘better off’. There is a slight shift in the argument. R. Johanan had referred to their value, Resh Lakish to their political and moral condition.
(19) It came back to them after the first destruction, it has not come back to us as yet. There is only a slight difference in Hebrew between the two versions עיניכם and עידיכם
(20) [To help Resh Lakish out of the water. V. D.S. a.l. n. 100.]
(21) Cant. VIII, 9.
(22) A wall is of one piece, a door, a gate at least of two. Had Israel come from Babylon, not in parts, but at once, Jewry in Palestine may have been found worthy of a restoration of the Sanctuary.
(23) Perhaps a comp. of sass and magor-magerah i.e. , a sawing worm. Bah reads: The worm destroys and saws it off from within.
(24) Bath Kol (v. Glos.). Just as some part of the cedar is unaffected by the worm, surviving the ruin, so was the gift of the divine voice a remnant of God's grace, even after the destruction. V., however, Cant. Rab. VIII, 11
(25) Of prophecy.
(26) V. Sot. 48b.
(27) [In the street, v. infra.]
(28) Tosaf. a.I. suggests that he would not address R. Eleazar, but would, of course, offer him the courtesy of a reply, when addressed by him; an example is cited from Zeb. 5a.
(29) One would trust the honesty of a man whom Resh Lakish honoured by engaging him in public conversation.
(30) Change the account by substituting one other man for one of the persons mentioned in the original account.
(31) ‘If Resh Lakish was the swimmer, make Ze'iri the other man; or Rabbah b. Bar Hana offered the hand and R. Eleazar was the swimmer’ (Rashi). [Aliter: Or Rabbah b. Bar Hana (who was a Palestinian) was the swimmer, and R. Eleazar (who was a Babylonian) offered the hand, v. Hyman, Toledoth, p.3 1076.]
(32) Your complaint was unjustified.
(33) Gen. IX, 27.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 10a
although God has enlarged Japheth,1 the Divine Presence rests only in the tents of Shem.2 Whence do we know that the Persians are derived from Japheth? — Because It is written: The sons of Japheth: Gomer, and Magog, and Madai and Javan, and Tubal, and Meshek, and Tiras.3 ‘ Gomer’, i.e. Germania:4 ‘Magog’, i.e. Kandia;5 ‘Madai’, i.e. Macedonia; ‘Javan’,6 in its literal sense; ‘Tubal’ , i.e. Beth-Unyaki;7 ‘Meshek’, i.e. Mysia;8 ‘Tiras’ — its identification is a matter of dispute between R. Simai and the Rabbis, or, according to another report, between R. Simon and the Rabbis, one holding that it is to be identified with Beth Tiryaka,9 and the other [authorities] declaring it is Persia. R. Joseph learnt: ‘Tiras’ is Persia, Sabtah and Raamah, and Sabteca.10 R. Joseph learnt: I.e. the inner Sakistan and the outer Sakistan.11 Between the two there is [a distance] of one hundred parasangs and its circumference one thousand parasangs .12 And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel and Erech, and Accad, and Calneh in the land of Shinar.13 ‘Babel’ in its usual sense; ‘Erech’ ‘ i.e. Urikath;14 ‘Accad’, i.e. Baskar;15 ‘Calneh’, i.e. Nupar —16 Ninpi. Out of that land went Ashur.17 R. Joseph learnt: ‘Ashur’, i.e. Silok.18 And builded Nineveh and Rehoboth-ir, and Calah.19 ‘Nineveh in its usual Sense; ‘Rehoboth-ir , i.e. Perath of Meshan.20 ‘Calah’ i.e., Perath de Borsif.21 And Resen between Nineveh and Calah — the same is the great city.22 ‘Resen’, i.e., Ctesiphon.23 ‘The same is the great city’. [From here] I do not know yet whether by ‘the great city’ Nineveh or Resen is meant. But, as Scripture says, Now Nineveh was an exceeding great city unto God, of three days’ journey,24 say that by ‘the great city’ Nineveh is meant.
And25 Ahiman, Sheshai, and Talmai the children of Anak, were there.26 A Tanna taught: ‘Ahiman’, i.e., the most skilful27 of the brethren; ‘Sheshai’,28 ie, he made the ground [he stepped on] like pits; ‘Talmai’, i.e.,he made the ground full of ridges. Another comment:29 Ahiman built Anath, Sheshai built Alush; Talmai built Talbush.30 [They were called] ‘the children of Anak’, because they lorded it over the sun by reason of their height.31
R. Joshua b. Levi in the name of Rabbi said: Rome is designed to fall into the hand of Persia, as it was said: Therefore hear ye the counsel of the Lord, that He hath taken against Edom; and His purposes that He hath purposed against the inhabitants of Teman: surely the least of the flock shall drag them away, surely their habitation shall be appalled to them.32 Rabbah b. ‘Ullah demurred to this: What intimation is there that ‘the last of the flock’ refers to Persia? [Presumably] because Scripture reads: The ram which thou sawest having two horns, they are the kings of Media and Persia.33 But say [perhaps] it is Greece, for it is written, And the rough he-goat is the king of Greece?34 — When R. Habiba b. Surmaki came up,35 he reported this interpretation before a certain scholar. The latter said: One who does not understand the meaning of the passage asks a question against Rabbi. What does, indeed, ‘the least of the flock’ mean? The youngest of his brethren, for R. Joseph learnt that Tiras is Persia.36
Rabbah b. Bar Hana in the name of R. Johanan, on the authority of R. Judah b. Ila'i, said: Rome is designed to fall into the hands of Persia, that may be concluded by inference a minori ad majus: If in the case of the first Sanctuary, which the sons of Shem [Solomon] built and the Chaldeans destroyed, the Chaldeans fell into the hands of the Persians,37 then how much more should this be so with the second Sanctuary, which the Persians built and the Romans destroyed, that the Romans should fall into the hands of the Persians.38 Rab said: Persia will fall into the hands of Rome. Thereupon R. Kahana and R. Assi asked of Rab: [Shall] the builders fall into the hands of the destroyers? — He said to them: Yes, it is the decree of the King.39 Others say: He replied to them: They too are guilty for they destroyed the synagogues. It has also been taught in accord with the above, Persia will fall into the hands of Rome, first because they destroyed the synagogues, and then because it is the King's decree that the builders fall into the hands of the destroyers. Rab also said: The son of David will not come until the wicked kingdom of Rome will have spread [its sway] over the whole world for nine months, as it is said: Therefore will He give them up, until the time that she who travaileth hath brought forth; then the residue of his brethren shall return with the children of Israel.40
Our Rabbis taught: All the cells in the Sanctuary were without a mezuzah41 with the exception of the cell of the counsellors, for therein there was a residence for the high priest. R. Judah said: Were there not a number of cells in the Sanctuary which had a compartment for a dwelling, yet had no mezuzah? Rather, the [reason for the] mezuzah on the cell of the counsellors was due to a preventive measure, What was the reason for R. Judah's statement? — Rabbah said, R. Judah is of the opinion, any house which is not made to serve both as a summer-home and a winter-home, is not a house.42 Abaye raised an objection: But it is written: And I will smite the winter-house with the summer-house!43 — He answered: They are called summer-house or winter-house, but not by the general name house. Abaye raised the following objection: ‘The sukkah44 used at the Feast [of Tabernacles] according to R. Judah renders [the fruit brought during the Feast] liable to tithe, whereas the Sages exempt it [from such duty]’;45 and it has been learnt in connection with it: R. Judah considers [a sukkah] liable to ‘erub,46 a mezuzah to tithe.47 And if you should say he considers it liable to these duties only on rabbinic enactment, that could apply to ‘erub and mezuzah, but as regards tithe, can one say that it is but a rabbinic enactment, [should we not fear]
(1) Japheth here stands for Persia, as the following account endeavours to show.
(2) [I.e. , the Divine Presence rests only in the Temple built by Solomon, a descendant of Shem and not in that built by the Persians, the descendants of Japheth.]
(3) Gen. X, 2.
(4) Germania, the land of the Cimmerii. [Rieger, P. (MGWJ, 1936 p. 455) identifies it with the modern Kerman in South Persia.]
(5) Usually identified with Crete. [J. Meg. I, 11 reads: Gothia, the land of the Goths.]
(6) [J.T.loc. cit. reads, ‘Madai in its literal sense, Javan is Ephesus’. Golds. accordingly reads Madai in its literal sense, Javan is Macedonia.]
(7) Bithynia in Asia Minor.
(8) Mysia, a district in Asia Minor.
(10) Gen. X,7.
(11) Drangania, a district in Persia (Jast.). [Golds. Scythia.]
(12) Rashi: They are a district surrounded by mountains. The outer S. includes the inner S., the inner which is one hundred parasangs’ distance from the outer, while the circumference of the outer one is one thousand parasangs.
(13) Gen.X, 10.
(14) Warka, S.E. of Babylon (Jast.).
(15) Jast. reads כשכר Cashkar, Cascara in Babylonia (v. Payne-Smith 1843).
(16) Ass. Nippur, modern Niffer. [Ninpi was probably an additional name by which Nippur was known and which is probably derived from the planet-god Ninib, Obermeyer p. 336.]
(17) Gen. X, 11.
(18) In Keth. 10b the reading is סליקא Selucia, on the border of Babylonia and Assyria.
(19) Gen. X, 11 .
(20) Perath, according to Jastrow seems to be the general name of certain districts, thus in connection with Meshan, Messene, the island formed by the Euphrates, the Tigris and the royal canal. Berliner, Beitr. z. Geogr. 44.
(21) A city near the site of Babel, Borsippa.
(22) Gen. X,12.
(23) A town on the eastern bank of the Tigris.
(24) Jonah III, 3.
(25) The Talmud continues with aggadic interpretation of other names.
(26) Num. XIII, 22.
(27) Root ימן (denominative of ימין ‘right’). ‘To endow with skill’, ‘distinguish’.
(28) According to Rashi the name is to be connected with the root meaning ‘desolation’, Lam. III, 47.
(29) Rashi omits, ‘Another comment’, and just adds the information as to the building activity of the giant en passent.
(30) [Identified by Obermeyer with ‘Anah, Alusa and Telbeth, three fortified island-towns on the Northern Euphrates.]
(31) So Jast. Rashi: "With their height reaching up to the sun it surrounded their neck as a necklace does the neck.
(32) Jer. XLIX, 20.
(33) Dan. VIII, 20.
(34) Dan. VIII, 21.
(35) From Babylon to Palestine.
(36) Tiras is mentioned last in Gen. X, 2, hence the ‘youngest of the brethren’.
(37) The destroyers fell into the hands of their enemies. Belshazzar into the hands of Darius (Rashi).
(38) It seems logical that the destroyers fall into the hands of the builders.
(39) The Supreme King of Kings.
(40) Micah V, 2, interpreting the verse that the duration of the people's abandonment will be ‘until the time etc.’, i.e. nine months, the period of pregnancy.
(41) The inscription of Deut. VI, 4-9, XI, 13-21 on a slip of parchment.
(42) Only a ‘house’ (cf. Deut. VI, 9) requires a mezuzah, not a temporary residence.
(43) Amos III, 15.
(44) The booth covered with twigs for the seven days of Sukkoth (Tabernacles). Lev. XXIII, 33-44.
(45) V. Ma'as. VII, 3. The liability to tithes begins only from the moment the produce is brought into the house, v. Ma'as. I, 3 and the point at issue between R. Judah and the Sages is whether a sukkah is considered a house in what concerns tithes.
(46) For the purpose of regulating Sabbath limits of movement a legal community or continuity is symbolically established for the inhabitants of a city, a court etc. If the sukkah opens out into a court in which there are other dwellings too, the inhabitants of all these dwellings will contribute their share towards a dish to be deposited in one of the dwellings, by which act the dwellings are considered as common to all, and the carrying of objects across the court and from one dwelling to another will be permitted.
(47) Only a house needs ‘erub and mezuzah.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 10b
that he may come to set aside tithe from where it is obligatory for where it is exempt and from where it is exempt for where it is obligatory?1 -Rather, said Abaye, there is no dispute concerning the seven days [of the separation], all agreeing that [the cell] is liable [to have a mezuzah];2 what the dispute is concerned with is the other days of the year; the Rabbis would institute it as a precautionary measure on account of the seven days, whilst R. Judah does not see the need for such a measure. Raba said to him: But the teaching [of the Mishnah]3 reads, ‘The sukkah of the Feast during the Feast’! Therefore says Raba: On all other days of the year they all agree that there is no obligation [for a mezuzah at the sukkah and cell], the dispute touches only the seven days, and there is a special ground in the case of the sukkah and there is a special reason in the case of the cell. There is a special reason in the case of the sukkah: R. Judah, holding in accordance with his own principle, that the sukkah must have the character of a permanent residence, hence considers [the sukkah] is liable to a mezuzah, whilst the Rabbis, following their own principle, hold that the sukkah must have the character of an incidental residence, and hence requires no mezuzah. There is also a special reason for the dispute in the case of the cell [of the counsellors]; the Rabbis hold that a dwelling not freely chosen is called a dwelling whilst R. Judah is of the opinion that such dwelling is not included in the term dwelling; only rabbinically it was arranged that a mezuzah be affixed at the cell lest the people say the high priest is being kept in prison.4
Who has taught the following which our Rabbis have taught:
(1) He might take off the tithe from something that is liable to tithe only by rabbinic enactment for some other heap (of produce), which is liable by the law of the Torah, and vice versa, thus invalidating the former and the latter.
(2) Even as at the sukkah.
(3) V. supra p. 45, n. 5. And yet it is said: ‘The Sages exempt it from tithe’, hence even during the seven days, according to one view, there would be exemption from the duty.
(4) Since only a dwelling not freely chosen does not need a mezuzah.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 11a
All the gates that were there1 had no mezuzah, with the exception of the gate of Nicanor,2 within which the cell of the counsellors was situated . Apparently this teaching is in agreement with the Rabbis3 and not with R. Judah. For, if it were to be R. Judah's opinion [surely] he holds that [the mezuzah at the cell] itself is only a rabbinical enactment, shall we enact a preventive measure4 to guard another preventive measure?5 — You might even say it is in accord with R. Judah. [They are not two separate enactments, rather] the whole is but one measure.6
Our Rabbis taught: And upon thy gates:7 alike upon the gates of houses, upon the gates of courts, upon the gates of provinces, upon the gates of cities rests the dutiful obligation8 to the Omnipresent, as it is said, ‘Upon the doorposts of thy house and upon thy gates’. Said Abaye to R. Safra: Why did the Rabbis not affix a mezuzah on the city gateways of Mahoza?9 — He answered: They serve only as supports for the Fort of Turrets [of that city].10 But the Fort of Turrets itself should have a mezuzah, for it contains a residence-compartment for the keeper of the prison! For it has been taught: A synagogue, which contains a dwelling-place for the synagogue attendant11 must have a mezuzah! Rather, said Abaye, it12 is due to a fear of danger.13 For it has been taught: The mezuzah of an individual's [house] should be examined14 twice every seven years, and of public buildings twice every fifty years. It happened to an Artaban15 who was examining mezuzoth in the upper market of Sepphoris16 that a quaestor found him and took from him a thousand zuz.17 But R. Eleazar said: Messengers engaged in a mizwah do not come to harm? — Where danger is to be expected, it is different, for it is written: And Samuel said: How can I go? If Saul hear it, he will kill me. And the Lord said: Take a heifer with thee, and say: I am come to sacrifice unto the Lord.18 R. Kahana recited before Rab Judah: The straw-magazine, the stable, the wood-shed, and the store-house are exempt from the mezuzah, because the women make use of them.19 What does ‘they make use [of them]’ mean? — They bathe [therein].20 Rab Judah said to him: The reason for the exemption is that they bathe [therein], but [had they been restricted to their] ordinary use, these places are liable to a mezuzah. But has it not been taught that an ox-stable is exempt from a mezuzah? Rather we must say that ‘they make use [of them]’ means they adorn themselves therein and this is what it teaches: Although the women adorn themselves therein, they are exempt from mezuzah.21 Said R. Kahana to him: But are the [places] wherein women adorn themselves exempt [from a mezuzah]? Surely it has been taught: An ox-stable is exempt from mezuzah, and [places] where women adorn themselves are liable to a mezuzah — What then remains now for you to say [is that] the case of [dwellings] wherein women adorn themselves is being disputed by Tannaim,22 and so on my view too23 concerning these places [when limited to their] ordinary use, there is a dispute of Tannaim — For it has been taught: ‘Thy house’24 means ‘a house appointed for thee’, thus excluding the straw-magazine, the ox-stable, the wood-shed, and the store-house which are exempt from the mezuzah. Some however declare them liable [to have a mezuzah]. In truth, they said, the privy, the tannery, the bathhouse, the house for ritual immersion are exempt from a mezuzah. Now R. Kahana explains [this teaching] according to his view, and Rab Judah explains it according to his view. ‘R. Kahana explains it according to his view’ thus: ‘Thy house’ means ‘the house appointed for thee’, thus excluding a straw-magazine, ox-stable, woodshed and store-house which are exempt from a mezuzah. Some however declare them liable. In truth, they said, the privy, the tannery, the bath-house, the house for ritual immersion and the rooms which the women make use of to adorn themselves are exempt from the mezuzah. But if this is so, it is the same as merhaz? — We are informed about public and about private bath-houses. For the thought may have occurred that only public bath-houses are exempt because they are full of uncleanness, but private bathhouses, where there is less thereof, are liable to a mezuzah, therefore he lets us know [that even private bath-houses are exempt]. ‘Rab Judah explains it in accord with his view’: This is how it is taught: ‘Thy house’ means ‘a house appointed for thee’, that excludes the straw-magazine, ox-stable, wood-shed, and store-house as exempt from mezuzah, even though women adorn themselves [therein].25 Some consider houses wherein the women adorn themselves obliged to have a mezuzah. But [when restricted to their] ordinary use, all agree that they are exempt. In truth they said: The privy, the tannery, the private or public bathhouse, even though the women adorn themselves therein, are exempt from mezuzah, because they contain a great deal of uncleanness. But would, according to Rab Judah, all agree that [these places when restricted to their] ordinary use are exempt? Surely it has been taught: ‘In your gates’,26 that implies alike the gates of houses, of courts, of provinces, of cities, cattle-sheds, hen-roosts, shed for straw, store-house for wine, store-house for oil — they all are liable to a mezuzah — One might assume this includes also
(1) All the gates in the eastern part of the Temple Court.
(2) Nicanor imported Corinthian bronze doors for the Temple gate called after him.
(3) I.e., the opponents of R. Judah in the Baraitha supra 10a.
(4) Making the Nicanor Gate liable to a mezuzah.
(5) V. Bez. 2b.
(6) Result of one enactment.
(7) Deut. VI, 9.
(8) Of affixing a mezuzah.
(9) A large Jewish trading town on the Tigris.
(10) [So Jast. Obermeyer p. 168: The fort of Be Koke, a fortress adjoining Mahoza.]
(11) Hazzan, v. Ta'an., Sonc. ed., p. 77, n. 2.
(12) The absence of a mezuzah at the Fort of Turrets.
(13) Rashi: Lest the king say: You are engaging in some witchcraft at the gate of my city. Perhaps because in examining the mezuzah from time to time one may find such an unpleasant quaestor as the Artaban did.
(14) It may have deteriorated by rotting or through worms, or it may have been stolen.
(15) A corruption or Judaization of ‘tribune’.
(16) In Upper Galilee.
(17) A silver coin, one fourth of a shekel, one denar.
(18) I Sam. XVI, 2.
(19) Lit., ‘are deriving benefit therein’.
(20) In the nude, hence it would be disrespectful to affix a mezuzah.
(21) [Rab Judah does not correct the Baraitha in stating that these places are exempt because the women make use of them. The Baraitha, in his view, means that although they make use of them, since, however, it is only for the purpose of adorning themselves and not as permanent dwellings, these places are exempt. Tosaf. s.v. אף
(22) Whether they are liable to a mezuzah.
(23) Explaining the phrase as meaning ‘they bathe’.
(24) Deut. VI, 9.
(25) And which therefore might be considered dwellings.
(26) Deut. VI, 9.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 11b
the porter's lodge,1 a veranda2 and a balcony, therefore the text reads, ‘house’ — [meaning] just as ‘house’ means a building appointed for a dwelling it thus excludes all other buildings not appointed for a dwelling. One might have wanted to include also the privy, the tannery, the bath-house and the house for ritual immersion, therefore the text says, ‘house’: just as a ‘house is made for dignity, so only all such are implied, which also are made for dignity, to the exclusion of these, which are not made for dignity. One might have wanted to include the mountain of the Sanctuary,3 the cells and the courts.4 Therefore the text says ‘house’: just as a ‘house’ is for common use so are only such [houses] as are for common use [liable] to a mezuzah — to the exclusion of these which are sacred!5 This is a refutation.
R. Samuel son of Rab Judah recited before Raba: Six gates are exempt from the mezuzah.- [the gates of] the straw-shed, the stable, the wood-house, the store-house, the Median6 gate, a gate without beams and a gate that is not ten handbreadths high. He [Raba] said to him: You started by saying six and you ended up with seven?-He replied: There is Tannaitic division of opinion concerning the Median gate, for it has been taught: An arched doorway7 — R. Meir declares it liable to the mezuzah, while the Sages exempt it.8 All agree, however, that, if the posts are ten handbreadths9 [high], it is liable to the mezuzah.10 Said Abaye: All agree that if the [whole] doorway is ten handbreadths in height, but the post is not even three11 it is considered nothing;12 again, if the post is three handbreadths in height, but the [whole] doorway not even ten,it is also considered nothing.12 They are disputing only concerning doorways the [whole] height of which is ten, with the posts three in height, but with a width less than four handbreadths, space however being left to extend it to four handbreadths.13 R. Meir holds one may extend14 it by digging [to the required minimum of four handbreadths], whilst the Sages hold that we do not extend it by digging it. Our Rabbis taught: The synagogue, the women's apartment, and the house belonging to partners are liable to mezuzah — Is that not self-evident? — You might have said [the scriptural] ‘Thy house’15 [means] her — but not [the woman's] house; ‘thy house’ but not their [partners’] house, hence we are taught [that they are included in the law of mezuzah]. But would you expound similarly: That your days may be multiplied and the days of your sons?16 Do only their [sons] need life, not the others [women and their daughters]? What then is the significance of ‘Thy house’? — It is as Raba said: For Raba said: The way thou enterest [thy house], and when a man moves, he moves with the right foot first.17
Another [Baraitha] taught:18 The synagogue, the house belonging to partners, and the women's compartment are subject to uncleanness from house plagues. Is that not self-evident? You might have said: Then shall come he who has the house to him;19 to him’ [implies] but not ‘to her’ [woman], ‘to him’ but not ‘to them’ [partners], therefore we are told [that this is not so]. Perhaps it is really so? — Scripture says, In a house of the land of your possession,20 [which includes both] — Why then ‘to him’? [That means to say that] if one devotes his house to himself exclusively, refusing to lend his belongings by pretending he did not own them, the Holy One, blessed be He, exposes him as he removes his belongings.21 Thus ‘to him’ excludes [from the infliction of the house plague] him who lends his belongings to others.22
But is a synagogue subject to uncleanness from house plagues? Has it not been taught: One might assume that synagogues and houses of learning are subject to uncleanness from house plagues, therefore Scripture says: ‘He who has the house to him’, i.e., he to whom alone the house belongs, that excludes those [houses] which do not belong to him alone? — This is no difficulty: The first teaching is in accord with R. Meir, the second with Rabba, for it has been taught: A synagogue which contains a dwelling for the synagogue attendant23 is liable to a mezuzah, but one which has no dwelling apartment, R. Meir declares it liable but the Sages exempt it. Or, if you wish, you might say: Both teachings are in accord with the Rabbis. In the one case the synagogue referred to has a dwelling [apartment], in the other it has no dwelling apartment. Or, if you wish, you might say [in accounting for the discrepancy] that in both cases the synagogue has no dwelling apartment
(1) Lit., ‘a gate-house’.
(3) The Temple mount.
(4) In the singular: The Temple court. In the plural the various compartments there, as the men's compartment, the women's compartment.
(5) [This proves that the places enumerated in the teaching of R. Kahana, even when restricted to their ordinary use, are also subject to a difference of opinion of Tannaim whether or not they are liable to a mezuzah, which contradicts Rab Judah.]
(6) The Median gate was usually made with an arched doorway, hence gates with such doorways came to be called Median.
(7) Which is the same as a Median gate.
(8) [Since it narrows down at the arch to less than four handbreadths, the required minimum of a gate, v. n. 10.]
(9) Before the entrance began to narrow down at the arch.
(10) ‘Er. 11b.
(11) It began to narrow down at less than three handbreadths from the ground.
(12) And requires no mezuzah, for the minimum for any doorway is ten in height for the whole doorway, four in width, three for the posts; below it is but ‘solid’ earth.
(13) Within the ten handbreadths, the minimum required height of the doorway.
(14) By legal fiction. As long as the doorway starts on a breadth of four by three, allowing space for continued dimension up to ten, we look upon it as continuing in the same size, hence as entitled to the designation ‘door’, with the implication of being subject to the law of mezuzah
(15) The possessive suffix in the Hebrew is masc. sing.
(16) Deut. XI, 21. If you press the text so hard, excluding woman because the possessive is in the masculine form, then you should consistently expound: In order that your days, may be, where the possessive suffix, too, is masculine, that God holds out no promise for the prolongation of women's life. Perhaps benekem, which literally means ‘your sons’, although it is understood to include ‘daughters’, being usually translated as ‘children’ might render the consequence of such pedantic interpretation more absurd still.
(17) Read ad hoc: instead of betheka, bi'atheka, i.e., ‘thy coming in’ instead of ‘Thy house’, to infer thence that the mezuzah should be affixed on the door-post at the right hand of him who enters. In this manner, indeed, the mezuzah is affixed, in the upper third of the post.
(18) Men. 34a.
(19) Lev. XIV, 35. So lit., E.V. ‘he that owneth the house shall come’,
(20) Ibid. 34.
(21) In accord with the priest's command, as prescribed: And the priest shall command that they empty the house before the priest go in to see the plague. Lev. XIV, 36.
(22) The plague is thus seen as a punishment for niggardliness.
(23) V. supra p. 47 n. 8.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 12a
, the first teaching referring to big cities, the second to villages.1 But are synagogues in big cities really not subject to uncleanness from house plagues? Has it not been taught: ‘In the house of the land of your possession,’2 i.e., the house of the land of your possession could become defiled through leprosy, but Jerusalem3 could not become defiled through leprosy. R. Judah said: I have heard that only the place of the Sanctuary is unaffected by the law of leprosy?4 Now does not that imply that synagogues and houses of learning are subject to the law of leprosy even though they be in large cities? — Read R. Judah said: I have heard that only sacred places5 are not subject to the law of leprosy. What principle are they disputing? — The first Tanna holds Jerusalem was not divided amongst the tribes6 and R. Judah holds Jerusalem was divided among the tribes, the basis of their difference being the principle on which these Tannaim differ, for it has been taught: What lay in the lot of Judah? The Temple mount, the cells, the courts. And what lay in the lot of Benjamin? The Hall,7 the Temple8 and the Holy of Holies. And a strip of land went forth from Judah's lot and went into Benjamin's territory, and on this the Temple was built — Benjamin the Righteous was longing to swallow it every day as it is written: He coveteth him all day,9 therefore he obtained the privilege of becoming the host of the Omnipotent,10 as it is said: And He dwelleth between his shoulders11 .
The following Tanna holds that Jerusalem was not divided amongst the tribes, for it has been taught: One does not rent houses in Jerusalem, because it [the city] does not belong to them, [the inhabitants]. R. Eleazar son of R. Zadok said: Nor any beds. Therefore the innkeepers take the skin of the sacrificial animals by force.12 Abaye said: We may learn from this that it is usual for a man to leave to his host the empty wine pitcher and the hide.13
But are the synagogues of the villages subject to the laws of leprosy? Has it not been taught: As a possession,14 i.e., until they conquer it. If they have conquered but not yet divided it among the tribes, or even divided it among the tribes but not divided it among the families, or even divided it among the families but before each man knows where his lot is, whence do we know [that the laws of leprosy do not apply yet]? To teach us that Scripture says: ‘Then he who has the house to him’ i.e., he to whom alone the house is belonging, excluding these [houses] which do not belong to him [the owner] alone.15 — It is more correct as we have answered at first.16
AND ANOTHER PRIEST IS PREPARED FOR HIM: It is obvious that if any disqualifying mishap occurred to the high priest before the morning [daily] offering, that one17 initiates the other priest with the morning burnt-offering. But if the mishap should have occurred after the morning sacrifice, how could he be initiated?18 — R. Adda b. Ahabah said: With the girdle.19 That will be in accord with him who holds that the girdle of the high priest is identical with that of the common priest,20 but according to the opinion that the girdle of the high priest was not the same as that of the common priest,21 what can be said?22 — Abaye said: He would put on the eight garments and turn23 with the hook, in accordance with what R. Huna said. For R. Huna said: If a non-priest turns with the hook, he incurs penalty of death.24 R. Papa said:
(1) In the metropolis people from many cities assemble in the synagogue, it therefore seems to belong to everybody, i.e., to nobody, whilst in the villages those who attend are known to all, being like partners in the synagogue (Rashi).
(2) Lev. XIV, 34.
(3) Jerusalem was not divided among the tribes, but was kept in trust for all Israel and could therefore not be subject to a law applying to privately owned houses only.
(4) Meg. 26a.
(5) Instead of ‘Sanctuary’. ‘Sacred places’ include synagogues and houses of learning.
(6) V. supra p. 52, n. 6.
(7) Ulam, leading to the interior of the Temple.
(8) The Hall containing the golden altar, Mid. IV, 1.
(9) Deut. XXXIII, 12. The ad hoc translation, lit., ‘to bend over’, thus to be anxious, hence (Rashi): he scratched himself in despair, was anxious to conquer it.
(10) The Ark stood in his lot.
(12) I Tosef. Ma'as. Sh. I.
(13) Of the animal which he slaughters and consumes in the house of his host (Rashi).
(14) Lev. XIV, 34.
(15) Obviously then the synagogues in the villages are not subject to levitical uncleanness, hence the alternate answer above, ‘One speaks of’ synagogues in metropoles, the other of synagogues in villages’, is unsatisfactory.
(16) The distinction is rather between synagogues with a dwelling for the synagogue attendant and those without it.
(17) He should officiate at the morning burnt-offering in the eight garments of the high priest.
(18) The rest of the service of the Day of Atonement is performed in four garments, how will his office of high priestly function be indicated?
(19) The high priest's girdle, which on the Day of Atonement is of fine linen (Lev. XVI, 4).
(20) [I.e. the material for the girdle prescribed for the high priest in Ex. XXXIX, 29 was also intended to be used for the girdle of the common priests, so that the girding of a linen girdle by the priest on the Day of Atonement would serve to indicate his high priestly function.]
(21) [I.e., the girdle of the common priest was of linen, the material of the girdle described in Ex. XXXIX, 29 being restricted to the high priest, so that the girding by the priest of a linen girdle on the Day of Atonement would indicate no particular high priestly function.]
(22) How would it be recognizable that he is initiated into performing the high priest's service?
(23) Rashi: Before starting on the service of the day, he puts on the eight garments, and turns on the outer altar one of the limbs of the daily burnt-offering with an iron hook. By reason of such turning that limb is more speedily consumed. He has thus done the initiative work for the office of high priest which he is to assume anon.
(24) This is only preparatory work, but since a non-priest, performing it in accord with R. Huna's opinion incurs the penalty of death, it is obviously considered as of even importance with the service proper, hence serving to initiate the newcomer into the high priest's office.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 12b
His service1 initiates him — Has it not been taught: All the vessels which Moses made became sanctified through being anointed. From then on they become sanctified through being used at a service.2 Similarly here his service initiates him.
When R. Dimi came [from Palestine] he reported: Concerning the girdle of the common priest there is a dispute between Rabbi and R. Eleazar b. Simeon, one said it was of kil'ayim [wool and linen in the same web],3 the other said it was of fine linen.4 It may be ascertained that it was Rabbi who said the girdle was made of kil'ayim, for it has been taught: There is no difference between the high priest and the common priest except in the girdle, this is the opinion of Rabbi. R. Eleazar b. R. Simeon said: Not even in the girdle is there any distinction. Of what time [does this teaching speak]? If during the rest of the year, there are many points of difference, [as e.g.] the high priest [officiates] in eight garments, the common priest in four; you must say, then, that [the time discussed is] the Day of Atonement.5 We can tell you: In fact the discussion deals with the other days of the year, and it refers to such garments which both wear alike6 [the only difference being the girdle].
When Rabin came [from Palestine] he reported: Everybody agrees that the girdle of the high priest on the Day of Atonement was made of fine linen, and during the rest of the year of kil'ayim. The discussion concerned only the common priest's girdle, both on the Day of Atonement and during the rest of the year; concerning that Rabbi said it was made of kil'ayim and R. Eleazar b. Simeon of fine linen. R. Nahman b. Isaac said: We also have: Upon his flesh.7 Why the repetition of ‘he shall put on’? To include the mitre and the girdle for the removal of the ashes, this is the opinion of R. Judah. R. Dosa said: It is to include the provision that the [four] garments of the high priest on the Day of Atonement may be used by the common priest [during the rest of the year]. Rabbi says: There are two valid objections to this: First, that the girdle of the high priest on the Day of Atonement is different from that of the common priest; secondly, shall the garments worn for the service of most solemn sanctity be worn for ministration of lesser holiness? Rather ‘he shall put on’ [was repeated] to include worn-out garments.8 R. Dosa adheres to his principle, for it has been taught: And shall leave them there,9 that teaches that they must be hidden.10 R. Dosa said: [It means that] he [the high priest] shall not use them on another Day of Atonement.11 Our Rabbis have taught: If a disqualifying accident occurred to him, and another was appointed in his place then the former returns [afterwards] to his office, whilst the latter has upon himself all the obligations touching the high priesthood,12 this is the opinion of R. Meir. R. Jose says: The first returns to his office, the second becomes unfit for the office of either high priest or common priest.13 R. Jose said: It happened to Joseph b. Elam14 of Sepphoris that after a disqualifying accident had happened to the high priest, he was appointed in the former's place, and the Sages said: The former returns to his office, the latter is unfit to be either common priest or high priest. He cannot be high priest for the sake of preventing ill-feeling,15 nor can he any more be a common priest, for ‘we may promote in [a matter] of sanctity, but not degrade’.16 Rabbah b. Bar Hana said in the name of R. Johanan:
(1) His officiating, without other initiation, in itself is initiating.
(2) Sanh. 16b.
(3) V. Ex. XXXIX, 29, cf. supra p. 54, n. 6.
(5) [When the high priest too has only four garments like a common priest, the difference between them being only as regards the girdle. Whereas the high priest's girdle was on that day of linen, that of the common priests was of kil'ayim, the same as during the whole year.]
(6) The tunic, the breeches, mitre and girdle, the only difference being in the girdle.
(7) Lev. VI, 3: And the priest shall put on his linen garment, and his breeches shall he put upon his flesh.
(8) These may be used for the removal of the altar ashes. V. infra 23b.
(9) Lev. XVI, 23: And Aaron shall come into the tent of meeting, and shall put off the linen garments, which he put on when he went into the holy place, and shall leave them there.
(10) To prevent their being used again, or their being used for any less sacred purpose.
(11) But they may be used by a common priest.
(12) Rashi: He must not let his hair grow long nor rend the clothes, nor contract ritual impurity because of a near relative's death; nor marry a widow; but he must officiate in eight garments.
(13) V. infra.
(14) Tosef. Yoma I, 4. The reading there is corrupt, and to be corrected in accord with the reading in Tosef. s.v. כה and in J.Yoma 38a: It happened to Joseph ben Ulam of Sepphoris (not ‘in Sepphoris’, for it could have happened only in Jerusalem) who served for an hour (or: little while) as high priest and as he went out he said to the King: My lord and King: Whose were the bullock and the goat which were offered up to-day, did they come from me or from the high priest? The King understood (the trend) of his question and he replied: What is this, ben Ulam? Are you not satisfied with having served in the high priest's place for one hour before Him Who spoke and the world was created, so that you seek to obtain the high priest's office for yourself? In that moment ben Ulam understood that he was deposed from the high priesthood. V. Hor., Sonc., ed. p. 89 notes, and Meg. p. 59, n. 2.
(15) Acc. to Tosef. ibid. the ill-feeling may also attack the King and the other priests.
(16) V. infra 20b.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 13a
The halachah is in accord with R. Jose, but R. Jose admits that if [the substitute high priest] transgressed that injunction and officiated, his service is valid. Rab Judah said in the name of Rab: The halachah is in accord with R. Jose, but R. Jose admits that if the first [high priest] dies, the second [the substitute] returns to his service. Is that not self-evident?1 — You might have said: This would involve for him a rivalry in his lifetime,2 hence he informs us3 [that this is not so].
R. JUDAH SAYS: ONE PROVIDES FOR HIM ALSO ANOTHER WIFE. But the Rabbis, too, are considering a possibility!4 — The Rabbis will tell you: Levitical impurity is frequent,5 death is infrequent.
THEY SAID TO HIM: IF SO THERE IS NO END TO THE MATTER. They gave a good answer to R. Judah! What then about R. Judah? — He will tell you: One may consider the possibility of one death, but one would not [go so far as to] consider the possibility of two [successive wives’] deaths.And the Rabbis? — [They hold that] if enactment [on the basis of consideration of the possibility] of death is justified, such [possibility] should be considered to include also two.6 But the Rabbis ought to apply that consideration to themselves!7 The Rabbis will answer you: The high priest is careful. If he be careful, why was another priest prepared [to take his place in case of accidental impurity]? — Since ‘ye make the latter his rival, he will be all the more careful.
But is this arrangement8 sufficient? The Divine Law said: His house9 and that [substitute wife] is not ‘his house’.10 -He betroths her [unto himself]. — But [still] as long as he does not marry her,11 she is not ‘his house’? — He marries her. — But then he has ‘two houses’ and the Divine Law said: And make atonement for himself and for his house,12 but not for ‘two houses’? — He divorces her again. If he divorces her, our question reverts to its place?13 — No, the provision applies to the case that he divorces her on condition; [namely], he says to her: Behold this thy letter of divorce14 [to be valid] in case thou diest.15 But perhaps she dies and he will have ‘two houses’? — Rather, the case is that he says to her: Behold this thy letter of divorce [to be valid] if thou diest. If she does not die, then she is divorced;16 and if she does die, there is [still] the other one alive. But perhaps she will not die, so that her letter of divorce is valid and the other [the first] one die, and he will stay without a ‘house’? Say rather: He says to her: Behold this thy letter of divorce [to be valid] if one of you die, so that if the one dies there is [still] the other one alive, and if the other one dies there is [still] this one alive. But perhaps neither of them will die and he will have ‘two houses’? Furthermore on such a condition17 it, [the divorce,] is really not valid; has not Raba said: If he said: Behold this thy letter of divorce to be valid if thou drinkest no wine all the days of my life and thy life, it is not valid;18 but if he said: ‘All the days of the life of So-and-so’, then it is valid?19 — Rather say that he said to her: Behold this thy letter of divorce [to be valid] if thy fellow [wife] does not die. If her fellow does not die, she [the second wife] is divorced, and if she does die, then there is still the other [the second wife] alive [to be his house’]. — But perhaps her fellow wife will die in the middle of the service and it will become
(1) Since the only reason for his disqualification was the ill-will engendered in the heart of the original high priest.
(2) Lit., ‘from life’. When the substitute might be said to have awaited jealously the death of his predecessor.
(3) We do not go so far in endeavour to prevent ill-feeling.
(4) Since they agree to the provision of a substitute high priest.
(5) It may be due to pollution, to unexpected contact with the saliva of an ‘am ha-arez, (Rashi).
(6) The death of one within a day is a rather infrequent occurrence. The only reason for considering it would be a principle, according to which we must consider possibilities, even remote. On such basis the death of two successive wives may not he said to be outside the sphere of possibility, hence: ‘IF SO, THERE IS NO END.
(7) With even logic the Sages ought to admit that, since we are considering the possibility of accidental impurity disqualifying the incumbent high priest, it is perfectly within the sphere of possibility that the substitute, too, may suffer such accidental disqualification, hence, here too there is no end to it!
(8) Of preparing a substitute wife.
(9) Lev. XVI, 6.
(10) If the first wife dies, whilst the second is not yet married to him, he has no ‘house’ to obtain atonement for.
(11) Lit., ‘takes her (to his home)’.
(12) Ibid. The Mishnah interprets ‘his house’ as his wife, v. supra 2a.
(13) In its original force. V. supra.
(14) Get. v. Glos.
(15) On the Day of Atonement. If she die on that day, her letter of divorce is retroactively valid, there is one ‘house’ only: and if she does not die but her fellow die, then she remains as the ‘house’, her letter of divorce being invalid. Rashi makes this significant observation: These arguments are not valid, they are answers to hypothetical questions preparing the ground for the last, satisfactory answer.
(16) And the first woman is his only ‘house’,
(17) Where the condition attached refers to her life.
(18) The purpose of the divorce is complete divorcement, whereas by the term of this letter she would remain ‘connected’ with him all her life.
(19) Git. 83b.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 13b
retrospectively revealed that the letter of divorce of the other one was not valid and he would then have been officiating1 at the service with ‘two houses’? — Rather assume, then, that he says to her: Behold this thy letter of divorce [to be valid] if thy fellow dies. — But perhaps the fellow wife will die and the letter of divorce of the first wife will be valid and he will stand there without a ‘house’? — Rather [say that] we speak of the case that he divorced them both, to the one he said: Behold this thy letter of divorce [to be valid] in case thy fellow wife does not die; and to the other one he said: Behold this thy letter of divorce [to be valid] if thou dost not enter the synagogue.2 But perhaps her fellow will not die and she will not enter the synagogue, and the letter of divorce of both will be valid and he will stand without a ‘house’? — Rather: To the one he says: Behold this thy letter of divorce [to be valid] in case thy fellow does not die; and to the other one: Behold this thy letter of divorce [to be valid] if I enter the Synagogue, so that if the one die, the second be available, and if the second die the first be available. What will you say in the case that her fellow wife dies in the midst of the service and retrospectively he will have officiated at the service with two ‘houses’? If he saw that she was about to die, he would at once enter the synagogue and would render the divorce retroactively valid. — R. Assi or, as some say, R. ‘Awira, demurred to this: Consequently, if this be so, two widows of one brother should not be married by the brother-in-law?3 — Scripture repeats ‘his sister-in-law’ twice, to intimate [that even in the case of] two sisters-in-law the law of levirate marriage applies. But then a woman betrothed4 should not be married to her levir?5 — [By emphasizing] ‘abroad’6 the betrothed woman is meant to be included.
Our Rabbis taught: The high priest may offer up a sacrifice as a mourner,7 but may not eat thereof. R. Judah said: Throughout the day.8 What does ‘throughout the day’ signify? — Said Raba: It means to indicate that he should be brought from his house.9 Abaye said to him: But now, according to R. Judah we even remove him10 [from the Sanctuary], for it has been taught: If he was standing and offering up a sacrifice on the altar, and he hears that one [of his close relatives]11 died, he should leave the service and go out. This is the opinion of R. Judah; R. Jose says: He should complete his service.12 How can you then say that we bring him from his house?13 — Rather, says Raba, ‘throughout the day’
(1) I.e., the first part of the service.
(2) On the Day of Atonement.
(3) So shall it be done unto the man that doth not build up his brother's house. Deut. XXV, 9. Here also the word ‘house’ is used for ‘wife’ and since ‘house’ is taken to mean but one wife, no brother would be able to perform the levirate marriage where his dead brother had left two wives.
(4) ‘Arusah’, betrothed, engaged, but not ‘brought home’. The betrothal carries with it almost all the legal consequences of marriage. V. Glos. s.v. Erusin.
(5) If ‘house’ is to be taken to refer to wife, why should a betrothed sister-in-law be subject to levirate marriage?
(6) If brethren dwell together, and one of them die, and have no child, the wife of the dead shall not be married abroad unto one not of his kin. The word ‘abroad’ here is superfluous and is taken to indicate that even one who was ‘still outside’, not having been married properly, but only betrothed, is included in the law of the levirate marriage, v. Yeb. 13b.
(7) ‘Onen’ is a mourner before the burial of his kinsman, to be distinguished from ‘abel’, a mourner during the seven days after burial. With regard to the high priest, Lev. XXI, 11 reads: Neither shall he go into any dead body, nor defile himself for his father or for his mother; neither shall he go out of the sanctuary, nor profane the sanctuary of his God. Scripture thus permits his officiating but he is forbidden to eat of any sacred meat whilst in mourning. This is inferred ad majus from Deut. XXVI, 14 which, referring to tithe, is of lesser sanctity than the meat of sacrifices, as the Israelites say: I have not eaten thereof in my mourning.
(8) V. Hor. 12b.
(9) He should be deliberately brought to the Sanctuary from his house, so that his pre-occupation with the sacrifices may help to lessen his grief.
(10) This refers to the common priest.
(11) Father or mother or son or daughter or brother or unmarried sister. Rabbinical enactment includes the married sister.
(12) V. Hor. loc. cit.
(13) If in the case of the common priest R. Judah would have him removed if he became a mourner, would he in the case of the high priest consider it a good deed to bring him to the Sanctuary?
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 14a
means to say that he does not officiate all that day,1 as a preventive measure lest he eat.2 Said R. Adda b. Ahabah to Raba: But did R. Judah enact a preventive measure lest he eat? Have we not learnt, R. Judah said: WE ALSO PROVIDE ANOTHER WIFE FOR HIM, LEST HIS WIFE DIE?
Now when his wife dies he may perform the service [on the same day] without R. Judah becoming apprehensive lest he eat?-He replied: Now is this so?3 There, because it is the Day of Atonement, on which all the world does not eat, he, too, would not be likely to eat, but here [on any day] when all the world is eating, he would also be ready to eat — But under such conditions4 what mourning would be coming upon him because of her, since she is divorced from him? — Granted that no mourning would be obligatory, but he would surely be distracted.5 MISHNAH. THROUGHOUT THE SEVEN DAYS HE SPRINKLES THE BLOOD6 AND BURNS THE INCENSE7 AND TRIMS THE LAMPS8 AND OFFERS THE HEAD AND THE HIND LEG;9 ON ALL OTHER DAYS HE OFFERS ONLY IF HE SO DESIRES; FOR THE HIGH PRIEST IS FIRST IN OFFERING A PORTION10 AND HAS FIRST PLACE IN TAKING A PORTION.11
GEMARA. Who is the authority [for our Mishnah]? — R. Hisda said: It is not in accord with R. Akiba, for if it were, R. Akiba Surely holds that if some of the sprinkling12 fell upon a clean person, it rendered him unclean! How could he then officiate at the service?13 — For it has been taught: And the clean person shall sprinkle upon the unclean,14 i.e., [if sprinkled] ‘upon the unclean’, [he becomes] clean, [if sprinkled] upon the clean [he becomes] unclean, this is the opinion of R. Akiba. But the Sages hold that these matters [concerning sprinkling]15 apply only to such things as are susceptible to uncleanness. I What is it about? — As we have learnt: If he intended sprinkling an animal and [happened to] sprinkle a man, then, if there be sufficient water on the hyssop, he may repeat [the sprinkling].16 If he intended sprinkling a man and he [happened to] sprinkle an animal, then,if there be enough water on the hyssop, he may not repeat [the sprinkling].17 What is the reason for R. Akiba's view? — Let the Divine Law write ‘And the clean person shall sprinkle upon him’, what is the meaning of ‘upon the unclean,’? Infer from this that [if sprinkled] the unclean becomes clean, and [if sprinkled] the clean becomes unclean. And [what is the reason for the view of] the Rabbis? — These words emphasize that [sprinkling is right] only upon matter susceptible to uncleanness. But this18 case can be deduced a minori ad majus: If sprinkling upon an unclean makes clean, how much more shall sprinkling upon a clean [keep or make more] clean! And R. Akiba? — It is with reference to this that Solomon said: I said, I will get wisdom,, but it is far from me.19 — And the Sages? [They explain] this [passage to refer] to [the fact that] he who sprinkles and he who is sprinkled are clean, whereas he who touches them [the waters of purification] is rendered unclean.20 — But is he who sprinkles clean? Surely it is written, And he that sprinkleth the water of sprinkling shall wash his clothes?21 — ‘Sprinkleth’ here means ‘toucheth’. — But the text reads ‘sprinkleth’ and also mentions ‘toucheth’;21 furthermore, he who ‘sprinkleth’ must wash his clothes, whereas he who ‘toucheth’ need not wash his clothes? — Rather ‘sprinkleth’ here means carrieth’ — Then let the Divine Law write ‘carrieth’, why is ‘sprinkleth’ written? — That [is meant] to let us know that there must be a quantity sufficient for the sprinkling.22 That will be right according to him who holds that a definite minimum is necessary in the sprinkling,23 but according to him who holds there is no required minimum in the sprinkling,23 what is there to be said? Even according to him who holds there is no required minimum [it will be right], for that refers only to the back of the man,24 but in the vessels there must be a definite quantity, as we have learnt: How much water is necessary to be sufficient for the sprinkling? Enough for dipping
(1) Until the evening.
(2) During the day he is forbidden by the Torah to eat, in the evening after burial the prohibition is only Rabbinical
(3) This analogy is incorrect.
(4) Since he would rush to the synagogue during her coma so that she would be divorced from him as soon as he entered it (v. infra), hence how could he be considered a mourner for his divorced wife. It is interesting to observe that sudden death does not enter among the many possibilities considered in this discussion. It would invalidate the suggestion of his leaving for the synagogue as soon as his wife was near death.
(5) upset by reminiscent tenderness, unable, as Rashi says, to be in the prescribed happy mood for eating sacrificial meat. [V. Hul. 132b, so that but for the fact that the apprehension lest he may eat does not arise on the Day of Atonement, he would not have been allowed to perform under such conditions the Temple service lest he eat of the sacrifices, Tosaf. Yesh.]
(6) Of the daily morning and evening sacrifices on the outer altar. Ex. XXIX, 38-42.
(7) Mornings and evenings on the golden inner altar, ibid. XXX, 1-8.
(8) Of the seven-branched candlestick, ibid. XXVII, 20-21; also XXX, 7-8. The trimming consisted of the following: Every evening the lamps were kindled by a priest, every morning cleaned, filled with oil, and provided with fresh wick. All this work during the seven days was performed by the high priest.
(9) According to Tam. IV, 2-3, the sacrificial lamb, after being slaughtered, was divided into certain parts, which, as a rule, were brought on the altar by the priests chosen by the count. Head and hind leg always were offered up first.
(10) The high priest had the prerogative to offer up at any time any portion of any sacrifice he desires, other priests could do so only during their particular week of service, v. Glos. s.v. Mishmar.
(11) Of the flesh of the sacrifice which was distributed among the priests: he could choose any part he preferred.
(12) Of the ashes of the red heifer mixed with running water. Num. XIX, 17.
(13) During the seven days of his separation, since he was to be sprinkled each day.
(14) Num. XIX, 19: And the clean person shall sprinkle upon the unclean, the words ‘upon the unclean’ seem superfluous, ‘upon him’ would have been clear enough. From this R. Akiba infers that only upon the unclean has the sprinkling a cleaning effect, with opposite effect on the clean.
(15) The Sages also consider the words superfluous, but they find in them the intimation that sprinkling has its effect only upon things susceptible to uncleanness, hence, if sprinkled upon things unsusceptible to uncleanness it has been misused, and whatever is left of the water is invalid and may no more be used for sprinkling and cleansing.
(16) (I.e., he can use the water left on the hyssop for a second sprinkling without necessarily dipping it again (Rash).]
(17) V. Par. XIII, 3. [The hyssop must be dipped anew if the priest desires to perform with it another sprinkling. In having been sprinkled on the animal the water on the hyssop became disqualified as water of purification with which work has been done, and can no longer be used for ritual sprinkling. Thus the Sages infer from the superfluous words ‘upon the unclean’ that the water of purification may be used only for such things as are susceptible to uncleanness, and by being sprinkled on things not so susceptible it becomes invalid (Rashi). R. Hananel on the basis of another reading explains differently.]
(18) The contention of the Sages that sprinkling could never have the effect of rendering unclean.
(19) Eccl. VII, 23. This matter is beyond logic, it is a law which has puzzled others already.
(20) Num. XIX, 21.
(21) Num. XIX, 21.
(22) For rendering the one who carries the water unclean; that is indicated by expressing ‘carrying’ in terms of ‘sprinkling’.
(23) V. Nid. 9a.
(24) However small the quantity of the water that reaches him from the hyssop bundle, the cleansing is achieved.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 14b
the buds therein and for the water to be sprinkled.1 Abaye said: [The Mishnah] may be in accord even with R. Akiba: He [the high priest] officiates all day, [and] in the evening is he sprinkled, then he takes the immersion and awaits the sunset.2
AND BURNS THE INCENSE AND TRIMS THE LAMPS. Hence [you may infer that] the incense came first and the lamps afterwards. A contradiction is raised against this:3 He to whom it fell to clear the inner altar of ashes . . . he to whom it fell to clean the candlesticks . . . he to whom it fell to burn the incense?4 R. Huna said: Who is the Tanna of [the Tractate] Tamid?5 R. Simeon of Mizpah.6 But surely we have learnt exactly the opposite.7 For we have learnt:8 As he9 came to the north-eastern corner [of the altar], he sprinkled to the east and north;10 then he came to the south-western corner and sprinkled it to the west and south. And with reference to this [Mishnaic statement] it was taught: Rabbi Simeon of Mizpah has this change in Tamid:11 As he came to the north-eastern corner he sprinkled it to the east and to the north; then he came to the south-western corner, and sprinkled it to the west and afterwards to the south.12 — Rather, said R. Johanan: Who is the authority for the order [given] in [the Tractate] Yoma? R. Simeon of Mizpah. But here is a contradiction between the order [given] in [the Tractate] Yoma and the order [given] in another passage therein: The second count decided who should slaughter, who should sprinkle [the blood], who should remove the ashes from the inner altar, who should remove the ashes from the candlestick, who should take up the limbs [of the burnt-offering] to the ramp [of the altar]. The third count: ‘Fresh ones, come and be counted for the incense!’13 -Abaye said: This is no difficulty. The one case speaks of the trimming of the five lamps, the other of the trimming of the two lamps.14 Shall we say that the incense interrupted the trimming of the lamps? But Abaye was recounting the order [of the daily Temple service] in the name of a tradition15 and he has the trimming of the lamps interrupted by the blood of the regular daily offering?16 — I will tell you: This is no difficulty, the one refers to the [order of the daily Temple service] in accord with Abba Saul, the other in accord with the Sages, for it has been taught: He should not trim the lamps and after that burn the incense, but he should offer the incense first and then trim the lamps. Abba Saul says: He should first trim and then offer [the incense] — What is the reason for Abba Saul's view? — For it is written: Every morning, when he dresseth the lamps,17 and afterwards [it says], he shall burn it?18 — And the Sages?19 What the Divine Law intends here is
(1) Par. XIII, 5.
(2) Thus he would be clean at night and able to officiate again on the morrow. Next day exactly the same procedure will follow. V. infra 19a.
(3) The quotation is from two Mishnahs, Tam. III, 9 and ibid. V, 4.
(4) Here the trimming of lamps is mentioned as coming before the incense.
(5) [Ginzberg, Journal of Jewish Lore and Philosophy l, p. 200 takes this phrase to denote that the Tractate Tamid did not go through the hands of Rabbi as Redactor, but that it has comedown to us in the original form with R. Simeon of Mizpah, a contemporary of R. Gamaliel II, as its compiler.]
(6) V. Pe'ah II. He was either of Mizpah or ‘Governor of the Watch-tower of the Temple’ (Jastrow).
(7) R. Simeon of Mizpah opposes the teaching reported in Tamid.
(8) Tam. IV, 1.
(9) The priest who sprinkled the blood.
(10) The sprinkling had to be made in such a manner that one constituted two, it was done in form of a Greek ‘gamma’, from the two corners. ‘
(11) [משנה בתמיד a difficult phrase. Rashi: ‘To change the order in connection with the Tamid, the daily regular offerings’. R. Hananel: He differs with the view laid down in Tamid. Ginzberg, op. cit., p. 285 n. 1 takes it as corresponding to תמני, ‘teaches’, used in introducing ‘variants’: R. Simeon's version of Tamid is . . .]
(12) R. Simeon insists that two separate applications had to be made from the south-western corner, one to the west and another to the south, and thus opposes the order given in Tamid, v. infra 15a, hence he could not be an authority for the Tractate.
(13) From here it is seen that incense was offered after the lamps, which contradicts our Mishnah here.
(14) There were seven lamps, the trimming of which, according to this answer, was interrupted by the offering of the incense, so that five lamps were trimmed, then the incense offered, after which the last two lamps of the seven-branched candlestick were trimmed, v. infra 33a.
(15) [משמיה דגמרא This expression seems to mean that Abaye could not give the precise source of his authority but referred it to ‘tradition’ in general, v. Bacher HUCA, 1924, p. 31.]
(16) His account thus varies from the statement he makes here.
(17) Ex. XXX, 7.
(18) Ibid. in the same passage.
(19) How do they explain this verse?
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 15a
that at the time the lamps are being trimmed there shall — [still] be a burning of the incense. For, if you would not interpret thus, [how will you account for ‘at dusk’], as it is written: And when Aaron lighteth the lamps at dusk, he shall burn it.1 Would you say here too that he shall first light the lamps and afterwards offer up the incense due at dusk? And if you will say, ‘Indeed, so it is,’ but has it not been taught:2 From evening to morning,’,3 i.e., provide a sufficient quantity [of oil] that it may burn all night from evening to morning; or, according to another interpretation: ‘From evening to morning’, i.e., there is no service which is proper [to be performed] ‘from evening to morning’ except this.4 What then the Divine Law intends is that at the time of the lighting there shall [still] be a burning of the incense. Here also: at the time of the trimming there shall [still] be a burning of the incense. And Abba Saul?5 It is different there, because Scripture Says: otho [it].6 R. Papa said: This7 is no difficulty. The one account agrees with the Sages, the other with Abba Saul8 How do you place the matter now: Our Mishnah in accord with the Sages, and [the Mishnah of] the count in accord with Abba Saul? Then consider the second part:9 They brought to him the daily sacrifice. He made the incision and another finished the slaughtering for him. He entered to burn the incense and to trim the lamps.10 That is in accord with the Sages. The beginning and the end [is then] in accord with the Sages and the middle in accord with Abba Saul?11 — R. Papa will tell you: Yes, the beginning and end are in accord with the Sages and the middle with Abba Saul.12 It is clear why Abaye does not agree with [the interpretation of] R. Papa: because he will not explain the first and last part [of the Mishnah] as being in accord with the Sages, whilst the middle with Abba Saul. But why does not R. Papa take Abaye's point of view? He will tell you: Would he [the Tanna] teach first13 of the trimming of two lamps and only afterwards14 of the trimming of five lamps? And Abaye? — He will tell you: First he teaches in a general fashion [of the obligation of the high priest to be occupied during the seven days],15 and afterwards he describes the order [of the service].16
The text [above states]: He came to the north-eastern corner, and sprinkled the east and the north; then [as he came to] the south-western corner, he sprinkled the west and south, and in connection with that it was taught that R. Simeon of Mizpah had this changed in Tamid. As he came to the north-eastern corner he sprinkled the east and north; then as he came to the south-western corner he sprinkled the west and afterwards the south.17 What is the reason of R. Simeon of Mizpah? — R. Johanan in the name of one of the school of R. Jannai said: Scripture said, And one he-goat for a sin-offering unto the Lord: it shall be offered beside the continual burnt-offering, and the drink-offering thereof.18 It19 is a burnt-offering and the Divine Law20 says, Deal with it as with a sin-offering — How is that to be done? He sprinkles one in such a manner as to constitute two [sprinklings], as is prescribed for a burnt-offering and he sprinkles two separate ones as is prescribed for the sin-offering. But let him make two sprinklings in such a manner as to constitute four, as is prescribed for a burnt-offering, and four full sprinklings as is prescribed for a sin-offering? — We do not find anywhere that blood brings atonement and then brings atonement again. But we do find blood, half of which is sprinkled after the manner of a sin-offering, and the other half after the manner of a burnt-offering? What you must of needs [say is] that Scripture has brought them under the same category! Here too one might say ‘of needs Scripture has brought them under one category’? — Here it is a case of merely ‘splitting’ the sprinkling.21 But let him sprinkle one so as to constitute two below, as is prescribed for a burnt-offering and two separate sprinklings above as is prescribed for sin-offerings?22 — We do not find that any blood is sprinkled, half above, and half below. Not indeed? Have we not learnt: He sprinkled thereof once upwards, and seven times downwards? That was done ke-mazlif’ [like the movement of swinging a whip]. What does ‘ke-mazlif’ mean? Rab Judah showed it by [imitating the movements of] a lasher.23 But [do we] not [find any blood sprinkled half above and half below]? surely we have learnt: He sprinkled thereof upon the tohar of the altar seven times.24 Don't you think it means upon the middle [of the front] of the altar, as people say ‘the noon-light’ shines, meaning by ‘tihara’ the middle of the day? — Rabbah b. Shila said: No, it refers
(1) Ibid. 8.
(2) Pes. 59a.
(3) Ex. XXVII, 21.
(4) The lighting of the lamps. There is no other service that is proper from the time they have been lit in the evening till the following morning (Rashi).
(5) How does he meet this argument?
(6) Ex. XXVII, 21. Only this (‘it’) may be done from evening to morning and no other work, so that you are compelled to give this interpretation to the text, but with regard to the verse dealing with the trimming, no such necessity arises.
(7) He refers to the question from the apparent contradiction of the two Mishnahs in Yoma — our Mishnah and the one infra 25a.
(8) Where incense is mentioned as coming first, the teaching is in accord with the Sages, the other passage where the lamps are first in order is in agreement with Abba Saul.
(9) Of the Mishnah of the count, infra.
(10) V. infra 31b. [This must refer to the two lamps as there is general agreement that the trimming of the five lamps must precede the incense.]
(11) That is unlikely.
(12) This is not impossible.
(13) In our Mishnah.
(14) [In the Mishnah infra 25a. Surely the trimming of the five lamps was before that of the two!]
(15) Without being concerned as to the order.
(16) [And thus infra 25a speaks of the trimming of the five lamps and infra 31b of the trimming of the two.]
(17) V. supra p. 65 notes.
(18) Num. XXVIII, 15.
(19) [The continual burnt-offering.]
(20) [By placing it in juxtaposition to a sin-offering, v. infra.]
(21) Without any evidence that this is made after the manner of a sin-offering, since both are made in one corner.
(22) The blood of the burnt-offering was sprinkled below the red line, round the middle of the altar, that of the sin-offering above the red line. V. Mid. III, 1.
(23) Above and below is not said here with regard to some line in the middle of the thickness, but it means that of the mercy seat was upwards, the seven all downwards, as one who swings a whip will make similar movements, v. Tosaf. s.v. כמצליף
(24) [The Aramaic tohar is taken to mean ‘shining’ like the Hebrew zohar, infra].
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 15b
to the top of the altar itself,1 for it is written: And the like of the very heaven for clearness.2 Why does he just sprinkle first as due with the burnt-offering, and afterwards as due with the sin-offering? Let him first sprinkle as due in case of a sin-offering and after that as due with a burnt-offering! — Because it3 is a burnt-offering, it comes first.4 And why does he just sprinkle north-east and south-west. Let him sprinkle south-east and then north-west? — I will tell you: The burnt-offering requires the [projecting] base5 [of the altar], and the south-eastern corner has no [projecting] base. — Why does he sprinkle first north-east and then south-west, let him sprinkle south-west and then northeast? — Since a master said:6 All the turns you make in the Temple must be to the right, the east, he comes first to that [north-east].7 Whence do you know that it is with the burnt-offering that the Divine Law states that it should be offered up in the manner due to a sin-offering? May it not be that it is with regard to the sin-offering8 that the Torah says: Offer it up after the manner of the burnt-offerings? — Let not that thought arise in you. For it is written: Beside the continual burnt-offering and the drink-offering thereof’.9 What does the Divine Law mean by this? Apply the measures [forms] of the sin-offering to the burnt-offering.
We have learnt there: The memuneh10 said to them: Go and bring a lamb from the Cell of the Lambs.11 Now the Cell of the Lambs was in the north-western corner. Four cells were there: one was the Cell of the Lambs; one the Cell of the Seals;12 one the Cell of the Fireplace,13 and one cell, in which the shewbread was made.14
They raised an objection: There were four rooms in the Cell of the Fireplace, like small rooms opening into a reception room; two on holy ground, two outside of holy ground; and the ends of the flagstones [in the pavement] indicated the mark between the sacred and the secular grounds. What was their use? The south-western was the Cell of the Lambs for offerings;
(1) The word tohar may mean ‘pure’, ‘clear’, and thus here the ashes on the top of the altar were shoved aside and the clear place in the middle sprinkled.
(2) Ex. XXIV, 10.
(3) The continual daily offering.
(4) Mid. III, 1.
(5) Zeb. 51a, based on Lev. IV, 18: the blood must be sprinkled to a place on the altar below which there is a projecting base.
(6) V. infra 45a.
(7) In the case of a sin-offering (the blood of which is applied to the corner of the altar), as he goes up to the ramp of the altar and turns right, he comes to the south-eastern corner first, but he may not sprinkle the blood there, because that corner has no projecting base. He therefore goes on to the north-eastern corner, where he sprinkles. The same order is also followed with a burnt-offering, although there is no ascent of the ramp since the blood thereof was sprinkled below the line round the middle of the altar. He approaches the front of the altar from the south, then turns to the right. [The words ‘the east’ do not apply here, as the first sprinkling is made, as stated, in the north-east. They are mentioned as a current phraseology arising from the context in which the phrase ‘all the turns you make etc.’ is first used. V. infra 58b.]
(8) [The he-goat of the New Moon.]
(9) Translate ad hoc: ‘upon the burnt-offering’, instead of ‘beside the burnt-offering’, cf. supra p. 68.
(10) Temple Superintendent, v. infra p. 97’ n. 4.
(11) In which lambs were kept, which had been passed as fit for sacrifices, in accord with Lev. I, 11.
(12) Shek. V, 3, 5. There were four seals in the Temple and on them was inscribed ‘Calf’, ‘Ram’, ‘Kid’, ‘Sinner’; ‘Calf’ signifying drink-offerings for (sacrifices from) the herd...’Kid’ signifying drink-offerings for (sacrifices from the) flocks . . . ‘Ram’ signifying drink-offerings for rams, ‘Sinner’ signifying drink-offerings for the three beasts offered up by the lepers. Anyone who wished to obtain drink-offerings would go to Johanan who was in charge of the seals, give him money and receive from him a seal, go from him to Ahiyah who was in charge of the drink-offerings, give him the seal and receive from him the drink-offering. V. Num. XV, 1-12.
(13) In which the fire was perpetually maintained, v. Tam. I, 1.
(14) Tam. 30a.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 16a
the south-eastern was the cell wherein they made shewbread; in the north-eastern the Hasmoneans hid the stones of the altar, which the Greek kings had defiled;1 through the north-western they went down to the chamber of immersion!2 — R. Huna said: Who is the authority for [the anonymous Mishnahs in] Middoth? R. Eliezer b. Jacob, for we have learnt: The court of the women was one hundred and thirty-five cubits long and one hundred and thirty-five cubits wide. At its four corners there were four cells. What was their use? The south-eastern was the Cell of the Nazirites, where the Nazirites cooked their peace-offerings, and cut off their hair and cast it under the pot;3 the north-eastern was the Cell of the Wood-shed, wherein priests afflicted with a blemish were standing to examine the wood for worms-for any wood wherein a worm was found is unfit for the altar; the north-western was the Cell of the Lepers; as to the south-western, R. Eliezer b. Jacob said: I forget what its use was, whilst Abba Saul said: There they put wine and oil and it used to be called the Cell of the House of Oils.4 It may also be proved by reasoning that the authority for [the anonymous Mishnahs in] Middoth is R. Eliezer b. Jacob, for we have learnt: All the walls that were there [in the Temple] were high with the exception of the eastern wall, because the priest who burns the heifer stands on the Mount of Olives and looks towards the entrance of the Temple at the time the blood [of the heifer] is sprinkled.5
And we have learnt: All the entrances that were there; were twenty cubits high and ten cubits wide.6 And we have learnt: Inside this7 was the Soreg [a railing of lattice work].8 And we have learnt: Inside this was the Hel [rampart],9 ten cubits broad. There were twelve steps there,10 the height of each step was half a cubit and the depth of each step was half a cubit. [Furthermore]: Fifteen steps which led from the Court of the Israelites to the Court of the Women, the height and depth of each step being half a cubit.11 [Furthermore we learnt]: Between the Hall12 and the altar there were twenty-two cubits, there were twelve steps, the height and depth of each half a cubit;13 and we have learnt: R. Eliezer b. Jacob said: There14 was a step one cubit high and the platform15 was set thereon and on it were three steps half a cubit high each.16 Now, if you can say that the authority for the anonymous17 [Mishnahs in Tamid] is R. Eliezer b. Jacob then it will be quite right, because according to him the door is concealed;18 but if you should say that it is in accord with [the other] Rabbis, there would be left half a cubit through which the door would be visible!19 — R. Adda b. Ahaba said: It is R. Judah, for it has been taught:20 R. Judah said: The altar was placed exactly in the centre of the Temple Court, measuring thirty-two cubits;
(1) The Hellenized Syrians under Antiochus Epiphanes, I Macc. IV, 44f.
(2) Mid. I, 6. An obvious contradiction of the first account above.
(3) Num.VI, 18: And the Nazirite shall shave his consecrated head at the door of the tent of meeting, and shall take the hair of his consecrated head, and put it on the fire which is under the sacrifice of peace-offerings.
(4) Mid. II, 5. R. Eliezer b. Jacob's statement, ‘I forget what its use was indicates that he was the authority of the anonymous Mishnah.
(5) V. Mid. II, 4. (5) The following statement should make what follows clear. All the entrances of the buildings on the Temple mount were twenty cubits high. Inside the Hel were twelve steps, each half a cubit high. From the Court of the Women to the Court of Israel led fifteen steps, and twelve from the Hall to the Temple. Together thirty-nine steps, each half a cubit high, making nineteen and one half cubits in toto. According to this Tanna one need not assume that the eastern wall was lower, for since the height of the entrance is twenty cubits, there would still remain one half cubit of the door, which the steps (being only nineteen and one half cubits high) could not hide, so that the priest burning the heifer could look directly from the top of the Mount of Olives into the entrance to the Temple through the various entrances which were all exactly one against the other. But since we learnt that the eastern wall was lower, the Mishnah must be in accord with Eliezer b. Jacob, according to whom two and one half cubits were added to the height of the steps, for we have learnt in his name: There was a step, one cubit high, on which stood the platform with three steps of half a cubit height each. If we add that to the nineteen and a half cubits of the combined heights of the steps, we get twenty-two cubits (v. Tosaf. Jesh.) and that height would hide from view the entrance which was only twenty cubits high. The high priest burning the heifer looked westwards from the Mount of Olives, i.e. towards the eastern wall of the Temple, that is why, according to R. Eliezer b. Jacob, the eastern wall had to be lower, and that is the conclusive evidence that the anonymous Mishnah of Tamid is in accord with R. Eliezer.
(6) Mid. II, 3.
(7) Inside the entrance of the Temple Mount around the inner parts containing the Court of the Women and the Court of the Temple.
(8) [Or ‘a stone wall’, Mid. II, 3. The Soreg was the barrier beyond which heathens were not permitted to approach the Temple area, cf. Josephus, Wars, v. 5, 2.]
(9) [A raised platform going around the inner precincts.]
(10) In those ten cubits of the Hel leading up to the Court of the Women.
(12) Ulam, leading to the interior of the Temple.
(13) Mid. III, 6.
(14) Between the Court of the Israelites and the Court of the Priests.
(15) It is the platform of the Levites, on which they stood, when singing or teaching, and from which the priests pronounced the benediction, V. Mid. II, 6.
(16) Mid. II, 2.
(17) Whenever no teacher is mentioned in the Mishnah of Middoth it is R. Eliezer b. Jacob, or whenever a Tanna is mentioned as opposing the anonymous Mishnah, he opposes R. Eliezer b. Jacob.
(18) By the height of the steps.
(19) To the priest looking across from the Mount of Olives; what necessity then was there for the eastern wall to be lower?
(20) The Tanna who said that the eastern Temple wall was lower.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 16b
ten cubits opposite the door of the Temple, eleven cubits toward the north, and eleven cubits toward the south. With the result that the altar was exactly opposite the Temple and its walls.1 But,if you should consider that the authority for Middoth is in accord with R. Judah, how could the altar possibly have stood in the centre of the Temple? Surely we have learnt: The Temple Court in all had a length of a hundred and eighty-seven cubits and a width of a hundred and thirty-five cubits. From east to west it extended over a hundred and eighty-seven cubits; the space which [lay] Israelites trod was eleven cubits; eleven cubits was the space which the priests trod; the altar occupied thirty-two; between Hall and altar were twenty-two cubits; the Sanctuary a hundred cubits and eleven cubits behind the place of the mercy seat.2 From north to south was a hundred and thirty-five cubits; the ramp and the altar occupying sixty-two cubits, from the altar to the rings3 eight cubits; the place of the rings twenty-four; from the rings to the tables four; from the tables to the columns four;4 from the columns to the walls of the Temple Court eight cubits and the remainder lay between the ramp and the wall and the place of the columns.5 Now if you were to consider that the authority for Middoth is R. Judah, how is it possible that the altar be in the centre of the Temple, since the bigger part of the altar lies towards the south?6
(1) The inside of the Temple was twenty cubits, the walls were six cubits in depth, and the height of the altar was nine cubits to which must be added the thirteen and a half cubits rise in the level of the Court of the Israelites where the altar stood making a total of twenty-two and a half cubits; thus the altar would hide the Temple door, hence the lower eastern wall. V. Zeb. 58b.
(2) [An empty space beyond the Holy of Holies, the purpose of which is not stated anywhere.]
(3) They were set in the ground in the slaughter-house, north of the altar, and the necks of the animals were placed in them. The most holy sacrifices were slain on the north side of the altar, Zeb. 47a.
(4) Low columns placed in the ground, to which iron hooks were attached, on which the animals were hung for flaying.
(5) Mid. V, 1, 2.
(6) [The figures given here as from south to north make a total of a hundred and ten cubits. To this must be added the space of four cubits occupied by the table, which is not mentioned here, then leaving a remainder of twenty-one cubits which lay equally between the ramp and the wall and the place of columns. This allows for ten and a half cubits for the space between the ramp (which was on the south of the altar) and the southern wall of the court. Deducting this from sixty-seven and a half cubits which was half the breadth of the court from south to north, we are left with fifty-seven cubits within which lay the ramp, thirty cubits in length, and twenty-seven out of the thirty-cubits of the altar proper, with the result that the larger part of the altar lay in the southern half of the court. V. Rashi.]
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 17a
Must one not rather infer that the authority [for Middoth] is R. Eliezer b. Jacob?1 That is the right inference.
R. Adda,2 the son of R. Isaac said: That cell3 was removed [from both] corners;4 to him that came from the north it appeared to be in the south and to him who came from the south it appeared to be in the north — It is to be proved by inference that it lay more in the south-west. Whence [can this be proved]? From a contradiction from [one statement about the] Cell of the Shewbread to [another statement about the] Cell of the Shewbread and the answer given by R. Huna, the son of R. Joshua: ‘One teacher considers it as lying to the right, and the other as lying to the left’.5
(1) [And the entrance of the Sanctuary was covered from the sight of the priest, who burnt the heifer on the Mount of Olives, by the extra step and not by the altar, for according to him the whole altar lay in the southern half of the court. V. infra 37b.]
(2) R. Adda wishes to reconcile the two contradictory Mishnahs in regard to the position of the Cell of the Lambs.
(3) The Cell of the Lambs.
(4) [Situated on the west side it extended from north to south, though removed from both extremities.]
(5) The Tanna in Tamid (supra 15b) mentions the Cell of the Lambs in the north-west, and assuming that he is counting towards the right, the Cell of the Seals would be in the south-west, the Cell of the Fireplace in the south-east, and the Cell of the Shewbread in the north-east. Against that the objection was raised, viz., the Mishnah in Middoth places the Cell of the Shewbread in the south-east. Whereupon R. Huna said: The Tanna of Middoth counts from the right, whereas the Tanna of Tamid counts from the left. Now, if we say that the Tanna of Tamid, who says that the Cell of the Lambs lay in the north-western corner, admits that it lay more to the south-west, but that it appeared (as the Gemara above has it) to the north-west, and he started in reality counting from the south-west, that will explain the contradictory statements in Tamid and Middoth; but if you say that his statement, the Cell of Lambs lay in the north-western corner, is to be taken literally, there is no sense in the answer, for even if one counted towards the left, that cell would be lying in the south-western corner.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 17b
Now, if you say that it lay in the south-western corner, it will be right that he answers the objection raised from [one statement about] shewbread to [another statement about] shewbread; but if you say it lay in the north-western corner, what sense is there in the answer about the shewbread? Must one not hence infer that it lay in the south-western corner? That is the right inference. But the Master has said: All the turns you make must be to the right, i.e., towards the east?1 — That [rule] applies to the Temple service, but here it is merely on account of measurement.
FOR THE HIGH PRIEST IS FIRST IN OFFERING A PORTION AND FIRST IN TAKING A PORTION [OF THE SACRIFICES]. Our Rabbis taught: How is he first in offering a portion? He can say: This burnt-offering I shall offer up, this meal-offering I shall offer up. How has he first right in taking a portion? He can say: This sin-offering I am eating, this guilt-offering I am eating. He can take one of the two loaves,2 four or five of the shewbread loaves. Rabbi says: Always five, for it is written: And it shall be for Aaron and his sons’3 i.e., half for Aaron and half for his sons. This [statement in] itself is difficult. You have said: ‘He takes one of the two loaves’. That is in accord with Rabbi, who says: He can take one half. Now say the middle portion: ‘Four or five of the shewbread loaves’, that is in accord with the Sages who say that he does not take one half. Now say the last portion : Rabbi says: ‘Always [he takes] five’. Does, then, the first and last part agree with Rabbi and the middle with the Sages?-Abaye said: The first and the second parts agree with the Sages, and the Sages admit that it is not a proper thing to give the high priest a piece of bread.4
(1) V. supra p. 69.
(2) Of Pentecost, v. Lev. XXIII, 17.
(3) Lev. XXIV, 9.
(4) Hence he may take one of the two loaves of Pentecost.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 18a
How is ‘four or five’ to be taken? — According to the Sages who say:1 The incoming Mishmar2 took six and the outgoing group took six, and there is no fee for the locking of the Temple gates,3 the division is in respect of the twelves loaves. Deduct one from a half, that makes five. Whereas according to R. Judah who says: The incoming Mishmar takes seven, of which two are the fee for locking the Temple gates, and the outgoing division takes five; the division is in respect of ten4 loaves, take one off the half, thus he takes four. Raba said: The whole teaching is in accord with Rabbi, but he is of the opinion of R. Judah.5 How then does ‘four’ come in? He should take five? That is no difficulty: In the one case there is a Mishmar which6 delayed in the Sanctuary, in the other there is no such Mishmar. If there be a Mishmar which delayed,7 so that he would take four of them, the division is in respect of eight loaves; if there is no Mishmar which had delayed, one ought to divide ten, so that the division is in respect of ten loaves, he would take five loaves. If so, then, can Rabbi say: Always five? — That is, indeed, a difficulty.
MISHNAH. THEY DELIVERED TO HIM ELDERS FROM THE ELDERS OF THE COURT AND THEY READ BEFORE HIM [THROUGHOUT THE SEVEN DAYS] OUT OF THE ORDER OF THE DAY.8 THEY SAID TO HIM, SIR HIGH PRIEST, READ YOU YOURSELF WITH YOUR OWN MOUTH, PERCHANCE YOU HAVE FORGOTTEN OR PERCHANCE YOU HAVE NEVER LEARNT. ON THE EVE OF THE DAY OF ATONEMENT IN THE MORNING THEY PLACE HIM AT THE EASTERN GATE AND PASS BEFORE HIM OXEN, RAMS AND SHEEP, THAT HE MAY LEARN TO KNOW AND BECOME FAMILIAR WITH THE SERVICE. THROUGHOUT THE SEVEN DAYS THEY DID NOT WITHHOLD FOOD OR DRINK FROM HIM. BUT ON THE EVE OF THE DAY OF ATONEMENT NEAR NIGHTFALL THEY WOULD NOT LET HIM EAT MUCH BECAUSE FOOD BRINGS ABOUT SLEEP.
GEMARA. It is quite right that [they assume] perchance he has forgotten, but that he never learnt, do we ever appoint men of that type? Surely it has been taught: And the priest that is highest among his brethren,9 that means he should be highest among his brethren in strength, in beauty, in wisdom, and in riches. Others10 say: Whence do we know that if he does not possess [any wealth], his brethren, the priests, endow him?11 To teach us that it says: ‘And the priest who is great by reason of his brethren’,12 i.e., make him great from what his brethren have?13 -R. Joseph said: That is no difficulty. One refers to the first Temple, the other to the second, for R. Assi said: A tarkabful14 of denars did Martha,15 the daughter of Boethus give to King Jannai16 to nominate17 Joshua ben Gamala as one of the high priests.18
ON THE EVE OF THE DAY OF ATONEMENT IN THE MORNING: A Tanna taught: Also the he-goats. Why has our Tanna not taught he-goats? — Since they are meant for sin[-offerings], he might feel discouraged. If it be so: does not a bullock,19 too, come for a sin[-offering]? — Since that comes for himself and his brethren the priests, [there is this advantage] that if there be one among his brethren the priests with whom there is something the matter, he would know it and bring him back to repentance, but would he know that with all Israel? Rabina said: This is what the popular proverb means: If your sister's son has been appointed a constable, look out that you pass not before him in the street.20
THROUGHOUT THE SEVEN DAYS THEY DID NOT WITHHOLD etc. It has been taught: R. Judah b. Nakussa said: One fed him [cakes] of fine flour and eggs in order to produce [speedy] elimination. They answered him: Thus you will induce the more excitement.21
It has been taught: Symmachus said in the name of R. Meir: One does not feed him either A'B'Y,22 and some say, neither A'B'B'Y,22 and some say neither white wine. Neither A'B'Y, i.e., neither Ethrog [citron], nor Bezim [eggs], nor Yayin yashan [old wine]. And, according to others, no A'B'B'Y, i.e., neither Ethrog, nor Bezim, nor Bassar shamen [fat meat], nor Yayin yashan, some say neither white wine because white wine induces levitical impurity in man.23 — Our Rabbis taught: To one afflicted with gonorrhoea one assigns food or too many kinds of food as the cause24 of an attack of gonorrhoea. Eleazar b. Phinehas says in the name of R. Judah b. Bathyra: One does not feed him25 either H'G'B'Y or G'B'M, or any other thing that induces impurity. Neither H'G'B'Y, i.e., neither Halab [milk], nor Gebinah [cheese], nor Bezah, nor Yayin: nor G'B'M, i.e., neither megrisen shel pul [soup of pounded beans] , nor Basar shamen,, nor Muries26 . ‘Nor any other matters [foods] that induce impurity’ — What is that meant to include? — It is meant to include what our Rabbis taught: Five things induce impurity in man, they are as follows: garlic,
(1) Suk. 56a.
(2) A division of priests, v. Glos. s.v. These divisions changed every Sabbath.
(3) [On Saturday evening, though the gates had been opened on that day by the outgoing division.]
(4) Not the half, as Rabbi would have it.
(5) That the two loaves are never divided.
(6) On festivals all priests irrespective of division came up for service in the Temple and shared in the shewbread. If the festival starts on a Sunday, the guest priests would have to arrive in Jerusalem on the Friday before, since travel on the Sabbath is forbidden. Similarly, if the festival closes on Friday, the priests would have to stay over the Sabbath in Jerusalem. Hence, in either case, they share equally in the shewbread with the priests of the division in service in that particular week. If however, the festival started on a Monday, so that the guest priests might have arrived on Sunday, but instead came on Friday already; or, if the festival closed on Thursday, so that the priests might have returned on Friday, but stayed in Jerusalem until Sunday, such ‘delaying’ divisions (or guest divisions) were allotted only two loaves whilst the remaining ten loaves were divided between the incoming and outgoing weekly divisions.
(7) And which obtained two loaves, Only eight remain for division — two having paid for the locking of the doors-and the high priest would receive but four.
(8) As prescribed in Lev. XVI.
(9) Lev. XXI, 10.
(10) Either: anonymous authorities, differing with the first Tanna of the Mishnah; or R. Meir, v. Hor. 13b.
(11) Raise him to independence by a collection taken up by all the priests.
(12) This is an ad hoc translation: (a) who is highest among his brethren (b) who is high because (of what) his brethren (do for him).
(13) V. Hul. 134b.
(14) [(a) תרי קב = ברקב two kabs; (b) ** = 2 1/2 kabs.]
(15) [His wife, v. Yeb. 61a.]
(16) [Jannai is often employed in the Talmud as a general patronymic for Hasmonean and Herodian rulers. Here it stands for Agrippa II, v. Josephus Ant. XX, 9, 4, and Derenbourg, Essai, 248ff.]
(17) The text has על ‘because (he had nominated him)’. D.S. reads, correctly, עד ‘so that’.
(18) To be, ‘the elected by the electors’.
(19) Lev. XVI, 6, 11.
(20) Because he knows all your affairs and he may blackmail you.
(21) With the danger of pollution, which would unfit him for the service on the Day of Atonement, on the morrow.
(22) Mnemonic signs, explained below.
(23) Causing sex excitement and thus possible pollution.
(24) That benefit of the doubt will have this advantage for him: If it were due to his usual illness, he would have to count seven days from the day it happened before he would be pure again, but now he can continue his original count.
(25) During the time when he examines himself to make sure there has been no recurrent attack of gonorrhoea.
(26) A brine or pickle containing fish-hash and sometimes wine (Jast.).
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 18b
pepperwort, purslane, eggs, and garden-rocket.
And one went out into the field to gather oroth [herbs]1 — A Tanna taught in the name of R. Meir: That refers to garden-rocket. R. Johanan said: Why are they called ‘oroth’? because they enlighten the eyes.2 R. Huna said: If one finds a garden-rocket he should eat it, if he can, and if not he should pass it over his eyes. R. Papa said: That refers to rocket growing on the balk. R. Giddal said in the name of Rab: A guest should not eat eggs nor sleep in the garment of his host.3 Whenever Rab came to Darshis,4 he would announce: Who would be mine for a day?5 Whenever R. Nahman would come to Shekunzib6 he would have it announced: Who will be mine for a day? But has it not been taught:7 No man should marry a woman in one country and then go and marry a woman in another country lest they [their children]8 might marry one another with the result that a brother would marry his sister or a father his daughter, and one fill all the world with bastardy to which the scriptural passage refers: And the land become full of lewdness?9 — I will tell you: [The affairs of] the Rabbis are well-known.10 But did not Raba say: If one has proposed marriage to a woman and she has consented then she must await seven clean11 days? — The Rabbis informed them before by sending their messenger earlier. Or, if you like, say: They only arranged for private meetings with them, because ‘You cannot compare one who has bread in his basket with one who has no bread in his basket’.12
MISHNAH. THE ELDERS OF THE COURT HANDED HIM OVER TO THE ELDERS OF THE PRIESTHOOD AND THEY TOOK HIM UP TO THE UPPER CHAMBER TO THE HOUSE OF ABTINAS.13 THEY ADJURED HIM, TOOK THEIR LEAVE, AS THEY SAID TO HIM: SIR HIGH PRIEST, WE ARE MESSENGERS OF THE BETH DIN AND YOU ARE OUR MESSENGER AND THE MESSENGER OF THE COURT. WE ADJURE YOU BY HIM THAT MADE HIS NAME TO DWELL IN THIS HOUSE THAT YOU DO NOT CHANGE ANYTHING OF WHAT WE SAID TO YOU.14 HE TURNED ASIDE AND WEPT AND THEY TURNED ASIDE AND WEPT.15 IF HE WAS A SAGE HE WOULD EXPOUND, AND IF NOT, THE DISCIPLES OF THE SAGES WOULD EXPOUND BEFORE HIM. IF HE WAS FAMILIAR WITH READING [THE SCRIPTURES] HE WOULD READ. IF NOT THEY WOULD READ BEFORE HIM. FROM WHAT WOULD THEY READ BEFORE HIM? FROM JOB, EZRA AND CHRONICLES.16 ZECHARIAH BEN KUBETAL SAID: OFTEN HAVE I READ BEFORE HIM FROM DANIEL.
(1) II Kings, IV, 39.
(2) This is a play on ‘oroth’, as if it were derived from the root ‘or’, light, thus ‘enlightening’.
(3) Eggs might induce pollution. He might suffer pollution in the host's garment, which would be a doubly unpleasant occurrence.
(4) Be-Ardashir near Mahuza.
(5) Who would marry me for one day. ‘This strange statement, completely contradicted by the saintly character of both Rab (v. ‘Er. 100a, Hag. 5a, Keth. 48b, Sanh. 76a) and R. Nahman, has been explained through an account in Babli 76b. King Shapur entertained two guests, Bati b. Toba and Mar Judah. In accordance with Persian custom, he "honoured" them by sending to each a concubine. This gift was rejected by Mar Judah, but accepted by Bar Toba. Rab and R. Nahman, as leaders of their people would find themselves similarly embarrassed by such attention, on the occasion of their official visits to Persian cities. Some princes are known to have taken the refusal of their "gift" as a serious affront. In order to avoid complications, these Rabbis hit upon the device of declaring themselves married, i.e., provided with a wife in the city they visited, going to the length of marrying "for a day" the local wife, thus helping them to escape the royal "gift".’ For another explanation v. Yeb., Sonc. ed., p. 235 n. 7.
(6) On the eastern bank of the Tigris.
(7) Yeb. 37b
(8) ‘They’ may mean either the children of that man, son and daughter, may meet as strangers; or he might meet his own daughter. The assumption being that he divorces his wife and so loses interest in her child.
(9) Lev. XIX, 29.
(10) Their children, their wives. They would boast of their descent, or of having once been married to a Sage.
(11) The assumption being that because of the excitement involved she has become a menstruant.
(12) The craving of him who lacks the opportunity of gratifying it is much more intense than that of him who has the opportunity.
(13) There the family of Abtinas prepared the incense, there the high priest was taught the skillful manipulation that would enable him to take up the incense without spilling one grain.
(14) That he would not act in the manner of the Sadducees. V. Gemara.
(15) The elders, because they had to utter such suspicion, he, because they had done so.
(16) These books, less known, might arouse his interest and keep him awake. Sleep was to be prevented, because of the risk of pollution.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 19a
GEMARA. A Tanna taught: To teach him1 the manipulation of hafinah.2 R. Papa said: The high priest had two cells. One, the Cell of the Counsellors,3 the other, the Cell of the House of Abtinas;4 one to the north, the other to the south. ‘One to the north’, as we have learnt: Six cells were in the Temple Court, three to the north, three to the south.5 Those to the north were the Cell of the Salt, the Cell of Parwah,6 the Rinsing Cell. Into the Cell of the Salt the salt for the sacrifice was put; ‘The Cell of Parwah’, there the hides of the animal-offerings were salted and on its roof was the place of immersion for the high priest on the Day of Atonement; ‘The Rinsing Cell’: there the inwards of the animal-offerings were rinsed and an incline led from it to the roof of the Parwah Cell. The three to the north were: The Wood-Cell, the Exile Cell,7 and the Cell of Hewn Stone. Concerning the Wood-Cell R. Eliezer b. Jacob said: I have forgotten what it was used for, but Abba Saul said: It was the Cell of the high priest and it lay behind the two and the roof of all the three was of the same height. ‘The Exile Cell’; there was the Exile cistern, and a wheel was placed above it and from there they drew water for the whole Temple Court. ‘The Cell of Hewn Stone’; there the Sanhedrin of Israel was sitting and judging the priests and whosoever was found unfit would put on a black dress and wrap himself in black, go out and go his way. And one in whom no blemish was found would put on a white garment, wrap himself in white, enter the Sanctuary and officiate with his brethren. ‘One cell was to the south’, as we have learnt:8 There were seven gates in the Temple Court, three to the north, three to the south and one to the east. To the south: The Gate of Kindling, next to it the Gate of the Firstlings, the third being the Gate of the Water.9 To the east the Nicanor Gate,10 beside which were two cells, one to the right and the other to the left; the former the Cell of Phinehas, the keeper of the garments and the latter the Cell of the Makers of the Griddle Cakes. To the north: The Gate of the Spark:11 it was a kind of portico with an upper chamber built on top of it, and the priests kept watch above and the Levites below. It had a doorway to the Hel;12 next to it was the Gate of the offering13 and the third was the Gate of the Cell of the Fireplace. And it was further taught: The high priest immersed himself five times and performed ten sanctifications14 on that day, all of them on holy ground on the roof of the Parwah house, with the exception of this one,15 which was on profane ground, on top of the Gate16 which latter was beside his own cell. But, [continues R. Papa], I do not know whether the Cell of the Counsellors was to the north and the Cell of the house of Abtinas to the south, or the Cell of the house of Abtinas to the north and the Cell of the Counsellors to the south. But it could be proven that the Counsellors’ Cell was to the south. How? He would get up,17 relieve nature, immerse himself,18 turn northward to learn his hafinah practice,19 enter the Sanctuary and officiate all day at the service; towards evening he would be sprinkled,20 return southward, immerse himself21 and rest. But if you were to say that the Counsellors’ Cell is to the north, he would then get up, relieve nature,22 turn to the south, immerse himself and learn the hafinah, enter the Sanctuary, perform the service all day, be sprinkled towards evening, return to the south and immerse himself, and then he would have to turn and go to the north to rest. Would we trouble him so much?23 Why should we not put him to much trouble so that if he be a Sadducee, he will give up; or in order that he become not too overbearing; for if you do not say so, let us place the two [cells] next to each other; or, let one be enough for him.
THEY SAID TO HIM: SIR HIGH PRIEST etc. Shall we say that this24 will be a refutation of R. Huna, the son of R. Joshua, for R. Huna, the son of R. Joshua said: These priests are messengers of the All Merciful God. For if you were to say they are our own messengers,
(1) The high priest, in that chamber.
(2) The taking of handfuls of incense.
(3) Where he slept.
(4) Where he would learn hafinah.
(5) Mid. V, 3.
(6) Named after a Persian builder of that name.
(7) [So called because it was constructed by the returned exiles from Babylon.]
(8) Mid. I, 4.
(9) Into which a bottle of water was brought for the water libation on the Sukkoth festival, v. Shek. 9a.
(10) Named after its designer or donor.
(11) A perpetual flame was kept up in its upper chamber to rekindle the fire in the Cell of the Fire-place.
(12) V. supra p. 72, n. 4.
(13) Animals destined for most holy sacrifices were brought there, because they had to be slaughtered on the north side of the altar.
(14) Washing his hands and feet; that is the traditional interpretation of Lev. XVI, 24.
(15) The first immersion, obligatory on any day, to anyone desiring to enter the Temple, v. infra 30b.
(16) V. infra 30a. This proves R. Papa's statement that the high priest had a private cell on the south side where the Water Gate was situated.
(17) Every morning of the seven days.
(18) [Assuming that the Counsellor's Cell where he slept was in the south, all this would take place in the south. The place for the first immersion was as first stated on top of the Water Gate which was no the south.]
(19) [That is in the cell of Abtinas.]
(20) The sprinkling made the clean unclean, hence the necessity of immediate immersion so as to fit him for to-morrow's service.
(21) V. supra 4b.
(22) [This would, on this assumption, take place in the north.]
(23) Hence it seemed reasonable to assume that the Counsellors’ Cell lay to the south.
(24) Our Mishnah, according to which he is addressed as ‘Our Messenger’.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 19b
is there anything that we ourselves are unable to perform1 and our messengers can perform?2 — Rather this is what they said to him: We adjure you according to our mind and in the mind of the Beth din.3
HE TURNED ASIDE AND WEPT AND THEY TURNED ASIDE AND WEPT. He turned aside and wept because they suspected him of being a Sadducee,4 and they turned aside and wept, for R. Joshua b. Levi said: Whosoever suspects good folks will suffer [for it] on his own body.5 Why was all this [solemn adjuration] necessary? Lest he arrange the incense outside and thus bring it in, in the manner of the Sadducees.6
Our Rabbis taught: There was a Sadducee who had arranged the incense without, and then brought it inside.7 As he left he was exceedingly glad. On his coming out his father met him and said to him: My son, although we are Sadducees, we are afraid of the Pharisees. He replied: All my life was I aggrieved because of this scriptural verse: For I appear in the cloud upon the ark-cover.8 I would say: When shall the opportunity come to my hand so that I might fulfil it.9 Now that such opportunity has come to my hand, should I not have fulfilled it? It is reported that it took only a few days until he died and was thrown on the dungheap and worms came forth from his nose. Some say: He was smitten as he came out [of the Holy of Holies]. For R. Hiyya taught: Some sort of a noise was heard in the Temple Court, for an angel had come and struck him down on his face [to the ground] and his brethren the priests came in and they found the trace as of a calf's foot on his shoulder,10 as it is written: And their feet were straight feet, and the sole of their feet was like the sole of a calf's foot.11
R. ZECHARIAH, THE SON OF KEBUTAL, SAID etc.: R. Hanan, the son of Raba, repeated to Hiyya, the son of Rab in the presence of Rab: R. Zechariah the son of Kefutal, whereupon Rab indicated to him with [a gesture of] the hand: [that it should be] Kebutal. Why did he not speak to him? — He was reading the Shema’.12 But is such [interruption] permitted, has not R. Isaac b. Samuel b. Martha said: He who reads the Shema’ may neither blink with his eyes, nor gesticulate with his lips, nor point with his fingers; and it has also been taught: R. Eleazar Hisma said concerning him who whilst reading the Shema’ blinks with his eyes, gesticulates with his lips or points with his fingers, Scripture has said: Thou hast not called upon me, O Jacob?13 — There is no difficulty; one view refers to the first portion of the Shema’, the other to the second portion.14
Our Rabbis have taught: And thou shalt speak of them,15 ‘of them’, but not during prayer;16 of them thou mayest speak, but not of other things.17 R. Aha said: ‘And thou shalt speak of them’, i.e. make them a regular programme, and not a casual topic. Raba said: One who engages in profane talk transgresses a positive command, for it is written: ‘And thou shalt speak of them’, ‘of them’, but not of other matters. R. Aha b. Jacob said: He transgresses against a prohibition, for it is said: All things toil to weariness; man cannot utter it.18
MISHNAH. IF HE SOUGHT TO SLUMBER, YOUNG19 PRIESTS WOULD SNAP THEIR MIDDLE FINGER20 BEFORE HIM AND SAY: SIR HIGH PRIEST, ARISE AND DRIVE THE SLEEP AWAY21 THIS ONCE ON THE PAVEMENT. THEY WOULD KEEP HIM AMUSED UNTIL THE TIME FOR THE SLAUGHTERING [OF THE DAILY MORNING OFFERING] WOULD APPROACH.
GEMARA. What is ‘zeredah?’ — Rab Judah said: The rival of this one, which is it? the thumb.22 R. Huna demonstrated it and its sound could be heard in the whole academy.
AND THEY WOULD SAY: SIR HIGH PRIEST, ARISE AND DRIVE THE SLEEP AWAY THIS ONCE. R. Isaac said: [Show us] something new.23 What was that? — They said to him: Show us the kidah.24
AND THEY WOULD KEEP HIM AMUSED UNTIL THE TIME FOR THE SLAUGHTERING WOULD APPROACH. A Tanna taught: They kept him amused neither with the harp nor with the lyre, but with the mouth. What were they singing? Except the Lord build a house, they labour in vain that build it.25 Some of the worthiest of Jerusalem26 did not go to sleep all the night in order that the high priest might hear the reverberating noise,27 so that sleep should not overcome him suddenly. It has been taught: Abba Saul said: Also in the country28 they used to do so29 in memory of the Temple, but they used to commit sin.30 Abaye, or, as some say, R. Nahman b. Isaac, interpreted that to refer to Nehardea. For Elijah said to Rab Judah, the brother of R. Sila the Pious: You have said: Why has not Messiah come? Now to-day is the Day of Atonement and yet how many virgins were embraced in Nehardea! He answered: What did the Holy One, blessed be He, say? — He answered:
(1) V. Ned. 35a. Prohibiting the making of gestures whilst reading the Shema’.
(2) Permitting the making of gestures.
(3) [He is addressed as ‘Our Messenger’ only in respect of this adjuration, i.e., to impress on him that he must take the oath in the sense as understood by them. (V. Ned. 24b-25a).]
(4) The Sadducees held that the high priest should prepare the incense on the fire pan before entering the Holy of Holies so that he would enter it with the pan asmoke. Many priests were suspected of adhering to that sect, hence the necessity of that solemn adjuration that the high priest would make no change.
(5) The text for this teaching is Ex. IV, I and 6. Moses had ‘suspected’ Israel of disbelieving the message of the Lord, when he would bring it to them, hence he was smitten with leprosy. But the leprosy there was neither meant as punishment, nor abiding, the verses are used illustratively rather than logically for the present purpose.
(6) V. infra 53a.
(7) Into the Holy ‘of Holies.
(8) Lev. XVI, 2.
(9) The Sadducees interpreted the passage: For I appear in the cloud, as if it said: For I am to be seen only with the cloud (of the incense) upon the ark-cover. The whole verse, according to them is to mean: Let him not come into the holy place except with the cloud (of incense), for only thus, with the cloud, am I to be seen on the ark-cover. Hence the Sadducees’ effort to enter the Holy of Holies with the fire pan asmoke, prepared and lit outside.
(10) [The high priest, in coming out of the Holy of Holies, walked backward so as not to turn his back on the Holy of Holies (v. infra 52b). When he reached the threshold and his back first emerged behind the curtain, the angel who was outside the curtain struck him on his back between the shoulders and threw him down, making him fall forward into the Holy of Holies with his face to the ground. There he lay till his brother priests came and threw him out. Cf. J. Yoma, I, 5. Lauterbach J.Z. HUCA IV, p. 193.]
(11) Ezek. I, 7. That trace is the ‘evidence’ that an angel had struck him, kicked him with his foot. The ‘four living creatures’ are identified with angels.
(12) V. Glos.
(13) Isa. XLIII, 22.
(14) In the first portion occur the words ‘And these words shall be on thy heart’, indicating that special devotion is necessary for such prayer to be properly read. Deut. VI, 6. The second portion, ibid XI, 13-22, contains no such special emphasis, hence no such restriction applies.
(15) Deut. VI, 7.
(16) Prayer should be silent.
(17) Loose talk, prattle.
(18) Eccl. I, 8. ‘Cannot’, i.e., ‘ought not’, i.e., ‘must not’,
(19) Lit., ‘flowers’ then ‘young men’ fig., in Job XXX, 12 the word is used contemptuously: Upon my right hand rises the brood.
(20) Zeredah is the middle finger, Tosef. Men, 35b as against Rashi a.l. Jastrow would derive it from zarad (be rough, in sound), thus ‘the snapping finger’. Baneth (Mo'ed, a.l.) would connect it with ‘strideo’ (Engl. a ‘strident’ note). But since ‘makkeh’ is used for playing on a musical instrument, it may be that ‘they played before him with the snapping finger’, to keep him amused: or, cf. the Roman ‘crepitus digitorum’, it may have been a sign of command: Arise!
(21) ‘Pug’ means to stop. Lam. II, 18 thus ‘remove’, thus ‘remove sleep’. The pavement was cool for his naked feet.
(22) Phonetic play: the match to this (the middle finger) or the nearest to this (the index finger), what is it? The thumb, i.e., the sound is produced with these two fingers (Jast.).
(23) על חדת lit., ‘for something new explaining אחת ’this once’ in the Mishnah.
(24) Pressing both big toes against the floor, bowing and kissing the pavement, and rising without moving the feet — this difficult performance was called the kidah-the bowing to the ground.
(25) Ps. CXXVII, 1. By implication: Except your service will be motivated by reverence for God, it will be in vain.
(26) [יקירי ירושלים 'the nobility of Jerusalem’ designated also נקײ-הדעת שבירושלים v. Klein מדעי היהדות I (1926) p. 74ff.]
(27) Of the people awake around him, singing and amusing him.
(28) Lit., ‘border-towns’, then: the country outside Jerusalem.
(29) Stay up all night before the Day of Atonement.
(30) Intimacy developed between men and women.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 20a
Sin coucheth at the door.1 — What about Satan? — He answered: Satan has no permission to act as accuser on the Day of Atonement. Whence [is that derived]? — Rama b. Hama said: Hasatan2 in numerical value is three hundred and sixty-four, that means: on three hundred and sixty-four days he has permission to act as accuser, but on the Day of Atonement he has no permission to act as accuser.
MISHNAH. EVERY DAY ONE WOULD REMOVE3 [THE ASHES FROM] THE ALTAR AT KERI'ATH HA-GEBER OR ABOUT THAT TIME, EITHER BEFORE OR AFTER. BUT ON THE DAY OF ATONEMENT AT MIDNIGHT,4 AND ON THE FEASTS AT THE FIRST WATCH,5 AND BEFORE THE COCKCROW APPROACHED THE TEMPLE COURT WAS FULL OF ISRAELITES.
GEMARA. We have learnt elsewhere: If limbs [of animal offerings] burst off from upon the altar before midnight, they must be put back and the law of Me'ilah6 applies to them; if they sprang off the altar after midnight, they need not be put back and the law of Me'ilah does not apply to them.7 Whence do we know that?8 — Rab said: One scriptural verse says: All night and . . . he shall make smoke9 and another passage says: All night . . . and he shall take up [the ashes],10 how is that? Divide [the night] half of it for smoking and the other half for taking up [of the ashes].11
R. Kahana raised an objection: EVERY DAY ONE WOULD REMOVE THE ASHES FROM THE ALTAR AT COCKCROW OR ABOUT THAT TIME, EITHER BEFORE OR AFTER. BUT ON THE DAY OF ATONEMENT AT MIDNIGHT AND ON THE FEASTS AT THE FIRST WATCH: Now
(1) Gen. IV, 7. Overcoming people against their better intentions.
(2) The Satan.
(3) Lev. VI, 3: And the priest . . . shall take up the ashes whereto the fire hath consumed the burnt-offering on the altar, and he shall put them beside the altar. In reality one did not remove all the ashes, but a handful. The rest was swept together on top of the altar and formed gradually a cone or ‘apple’, (tapuah ha-mizbeah) which was considered an ornament. It was removed only when it occupied too much room: And he . . . shall carry forth the ashes without the camp unto a clean place (ibid. 4).
(4) To keep the high priest busy. This part of the work need not have been done by him, as Tosaf. Zeb. 86b proves.
(5) As to the watch, there is a diversity of opinion in Ber. 3a, some dividing the night into three, others into four such watches.
(6) Me'ilah is the law concerning the unlawful use of sacred property; ma'al means ‘commit a trespass’ and refers to the use or appropriation of anything that belongs to the altar, to the Sanctuary, to God. If me'ilah has been committed by error, there is reparation and a guilt-offering: If one commit a trespass and sin through error, then he shall bring his forfeit to the Lord, a ram without blemish . . . for a guilt-offering, and he shall make restitution for that which he hath done amiss . . . and shall add the fifth part thereto (Lev. V, 15-16).
(7) Zeb. 86a.
(8) That by midnight the limbs are considered consumed and treated as ashes.
(9) Lev. VI, 2-5. It is a loose combination of passages.
(10) In reality the smoking, mentioned at the end, might be assumed to take place at the end. The argument here is from the facts back to some support in the text.
(11) Any limb bursting off after midnight is regarded as consumed and can be removed as ashes.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 20b
if the thought should arise in you that midnight is a time fixed by the Torah, how could it be anticipated [or postponed]?1 — Rather said R. Johanan: By mere logical conclusion from the text ‘All the night’ would I not know that it means until the morning, why then the teaching ‘until the morning’? Add another morning to the ‘morning of the night’,2 Hence every day one would remove the ashes at cockcrow, either before or after being ample [time]. On the Day of Atonement, when the high priest is weak, we do it about midnight and on the Feasts when many Israelites are present and many sacrifices3 are offered we do it from the first watch, as indeed the reason therefore is indicated: BEFORE THE COCKCROW APPROACHED, THE TEMPLE COURT WAS FULL OF ISRAELITES. What does ‘keri'ath ha-geber’4 mean? — Rab said: The call of a man,5 R. Shila: The call of the cock. Rab came to the place of R. Shila, when there happened to be no interpreter6 to stand next to R. Shila, so Rab took the stand next to him and interpreted ‘keriath hageber’ as ‘the call of the man’. R. Shila said to him: Would you, Sir, interpret it as: Cockcrow! Rab replied: ‘A flute is musical to nobles, but give it to weavers, they will not accept it’.7 When I stood before R. Hiyya and interpreted ‘keriath ha-geber’ as the ‘call of the man’ he did not object to it and you say to me: Say, perhaps, the cock's crow! He said: Sir, you are Rab, would you sit down, Sir!8 He replied: People say: If you have hired yourself away [to someone] pull his wool!9 Some say: Thus did he reply to him: One may promote a man in holy things, but not demote10 him. There is a teaching in accordance with Rab, and there is also a teaching in accord with R. Shila. There is a teaching in accord with Rab: What does Gebini the Temple crier call out: Arise, ye priests for your service, Levites for your platform, Israel for your post! And his voice was audible for three parasangs. It happened that King Agrippa who came along travelling, heard his voice from three parasangs, and as he came home, he sent gifts to him. Nevertheless, the high priest is more excellent than even he, for the Master said:11 It has happened already that when he prayed ‘Oh Lord’ that his voice was heard in Jericho, and Rabbah b. Bar Hana said in the name of R. Johanan: From Jerusalem to Jericho is a distance of ten parasangs:12 and although here there is weakness,13 and there none, and here it is day and there night;14 for R. Levi said: Why is the voice of man not heard by day as it is heard by night? Because of the revolution15 of the sun which saws in the sky like a carpenter sawing cedars. Those sunmotes are called ‘la’,16 and with reference to them Nebuchadnezzar said:17 And all the inhabitants of the world are considered as ‘la’. Our Rabbis taught: Were it not for the revolution of the sun, the sound of the tumult of Rome would be heard: and were it not for the sound of the tumult of Rome, the sound of the revolution of the sun would be heard.
Our Rabbis taught : There are three voices18 going from one end of the world to the other: The sound of the revolution of the sun; the sound of the tumult of Rome, and the sound of the soul as it leaves the body. Some say also the sound of childbirth
(1) [Since before midnight it is not considered consumed. Rashi omits ‘or postponed’ which is bracketed in cur. edd. Tosaf. retains it explaining it on the principle that ‘the zealous perform a religious duty as early as possible’.]
(2) The morning of the night’ is the dawn. The additional morning is the margin of before and after the cockcrow.
(3) Since there were many ashes and they had all to be removed for the ‘apple’ to be imposing, they started earlier on these days.
(4) The call of ‘geber’. That word means in Hebrew both ‘man’ and ‘cock’. Hence it may mean that the work started at cockcrow or as soon as the man (officer) called them in the morning.
(5) The officer summoned all, priests, Levites, and Israelites, to their respective duties.
(6) Amora (v. Glos.). The Rabbi taught in Hebrew, which he spoke to the interpreter. The latter translated the lecture into Aramaic, the language of the people, as against Hebrew, more and more the language of the scholars (Rashi).
(7) I.e., fools would criticize, where men of taste admire.
(8) Do not continue as my interpreter. You are too big to serve me.
(9) Having undertaken the task, I will complete it, unconcerned about questions of dignity.
(10) The next interpreter may know very little and it would be a sort of disgrace for you to have to put up with an ignoramus after my service, The emphasis is on the ignoramus, not on any implied self-praise.
(11) Infra 39b.
(12) V. Glos.
(13) The weakness due to the Fast.
(14) The high priest prayed during the day, when his voice would be less audible because of the revolution of the sun.
(15) Lit., ‘the wheel’, V. Otzar ha-Geonim, a.l.: ‘There is a voice heard now in Babylon, sounding from pools, and connected trenches, a harsh voice, which is ascribed to Ridya. Thus also do the Ishmaelites (Muslim Arabs) call it. It sounds from the month of Iyar through the harvest’. V. Ginzberg, Geonica, I, 345
(16) Nothing, to which is equal a mere mote, a particle.
(17) Ran. IV, 32. And ‘in the inhabitants of the world are reputed as nothing is ad hoc translated ‘as sun-motes’.
(18) Aliter: reputation.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 21a
and some say also the sound of Ridya.1 The Sages prayed for the soul as it leaves the body and achieved the stopping [of that cry].
We have learnt in accord with R. Shila: If one starts out on a journey before keri'ath ha-geber, his blood comes upon his own head!2 R. Josiah says: [He should wait] until he has crowed twice, some say: Until he has crowed thrice. What kind of cock? The average type.3
Rab Judah said in the name of Rab: When the Israelites come up to the festivals, they stand pressed together,4 but they prostrate themselves, with wide spaces [between them], and they extend eleven cubits behind the back wall of the Holy of Holies.5 What does that mean? — It means that although they extended eleven cubits behind the back wall of the Holy of Holies, standing pressed together, yet when they prostrated themselves, they prostrated themselves with wide spaces [between them]. This is one of the ten miracles which were wrought in the Temple, for we have learnt: Ten miracles were wrought in the Temple:6 no woman miscarried from the scent of the holy flesh; the holy flesh never became putrid; no fly was seen in the slaughter house; no pollution ever befell the high priest on the Day of Atonement; no rain ever quenched the fire of the wood-pile on the altar; neither did the wind overcome the column of smoke that arose therefrom; nor was there ever found any disqualifying defect in the ‘Omer7 or in the two loaves,8 or in the shewbread; though the people stood closely pressed together, they still found wide spaces between them to prostrate themselves; never did serpent or scorpion injure anyone in Jerusalem, nor did any man ever say to his fellow: The place is too narrow for me to stay overnight in Jerusalem.9 — He started with [miracles in] the Temple and concludes with [those wrought] in Jerusalem! — There are two more [miracles wrought] in the Temple. For it has been taught: Never did rains quench the fire of the pile of wood on the altar; and as for the smoke arising from the pile of wood, even if all the winds of the world came blowing, they could not divert it from its wonted place. But are there no more? Has not R. Shemaya of Kalnebo10 taught that the fragments of earthenware11 were swallowed up in the very place [where they were broken];12 and Abaye said: The crop, the feathers, the ashes removed from the inner altar and from the candlestick were swallowed up in the very place [where they were taken off]? — The three13 [referring to] disqualifications were included under one head, hence take off two and add two! But then all [cases of] things swallowed up ought also to be included under one14 head, so that the count would be one short? — There are also other [miracles], for R. Joshua b. Levi said:15 A great miracle was wrought with the shewbread, viz., when it was removed it was as fresh as when it was put on, as it was said: To put hot bread in the day it was taken away.16 But are there no more? Has not R. Levi said: This matter has been handed down as a tradition to us from our forefathers: The place on which the ark stands is not included in the measurement;17 and has not Rabbanai in the name of Samuel said: The Cherubs14 were standing by sheer miracle? — The count refers to miracles wrought outside [the Temple], miracles wrought inside are not mentioned. If that be so, what of the shewbread which is also a miracle that happened inside the Temple? — No, that miracle happened outside, for Resh Lakish said: What is the meaning of the passage: Upon the pure table before the Lord;18 the statement that it is pure implies that it was susceptible to uncleanness.
(1) רדיא: name of the angel of rain. In Ta'an. 25b his figure is said to be that of a calf, and according to Rashi it is from this fact that it derives its name, רדיא being the Aramaic equivalent of חורש a ploughing (ox).
(2) Which proves the phrase to mean, cockcrow.
(3) One that crows neither too early nor too late.
(4) Pressed, squeezed together in the Temple. Rashi would have it as a simile of a ‘floating mass’, immovable in a swaying mob.
(5) Lit., ‘House of the Mercy Seat’, v. supra p. 73, n. 5.
(6) Another reading has ‘unto our forefathers in etc.’
(7) Of new barley offered on the second day of Passover, Lev. XXIII, 10f.
(8) The first fruits of the wheat harvest offered on Pentecost, ibid. 17.
(9) V. Aboth, Sonc. ed., p. 62 notes,
(10) [Kar-nebo, the city of Nebo. Probably Borsippa, v. Funk, Monumenta I p. 299.]
(11) In which flesh of sin-offerings was boiled, and which according to Lev. had to be broken, v. Lev. VI, 21.
(12) Zeb. 96a.
(13) Of the ‘Omer, the two loaves and the shewbread.
(14) Broken earthenware, crop, feathers, ashes. Broken earthenware was counted as one and all the other things swallowed up came as under one head, so that if they were all to be placed on one count, there would be one miracle short of the number.
(15) Hag. 26b.
(16) I Sam. XXI, 7
(17) The Cherubim which Solomon made stood on the floor next to the ark, on the right and left, The spread of their wings was twenty cubits, Since the whole room had no more than twenty cubits, the body of the Cherubs, as separate from the wings, was in the room by miraculous provision. The same applies to the ark.
(18) Lev. XXIV, 6.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 21b
[But surely] it was a wooden vessel, intended for resting, and every wooden vessel intended for resting is not susceptible to uncleanness and sets up a barrier1 against uncleanness?2 Rather does this teach us that the table would be lifted3 up for the gaze of those who came up to the Festivals, with the mark: Behold how beloved you are of God, for it is as fresh when it is taken off as it was when put on, as it was said: ‘To put hot bread in the day it was taken away’.4
But were there no more [miracles]? Did not R. Oshaia say:5 When King Solomon built the Sanctuary, he planted therein all kinds of [trees of] golden delights, which were bringing forth their fruits in their season and as the winds blew at them, they would fall off, as it is written: May his fruits rustle like Lebanon,6 and when the foreigners entered the Temple they withered, as it is written: And the flower of Lebanon languishes;7 and the Holy One, blessed be He, will in the future restore them, as it is said: It shall blossom abundantly and rejoice, even with joy and singing; the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto it?8 -Permanent miracles he does not include in his count. And now that we have come to this [conclusion], the ark and the Cherubim are also permanent miracles.9
The Master said: ‘And the [smoke arising from the] pile of wood on the altar’. But was there smoke arising from the pile of wood? Has it not been taught: Five things were reported about the fire of the pile of wood: It10 was lying like a lion, it was as clear as sunlight, its flame was of solid substance, it devoured wet wood like dry wood, and it caused no smoke to arise from it? — What we said [about the smoke] referred to the wood from outside [of the Sanctuary].11 For it has been taught: And the sons of Aaron the priest shall put fire upon the altar12 — although the fire comes down from heaven, it is a proper thing to bring fire from outside too.13
‘Lying like a lion’. But has it not been taught: R. Hanina, deputy high priest, said: I myself have seen it and it was lying like a dog? — This is no contradiction: The first statement refers to the first Temple, the second to the second Temple.14 But was the fire present at the second Temple?-Surely R. Samuel b. Inia said: What is the meaning of the scriptural verse: And I will take pleasure in it [we-ikabed] and I will be glorified?15 The traditional reading is ‘we-ikabedah’, then why is the [letter] ‘he’ omitted [in the text]? To indicate that in five16 things the first Sanctuary differed from the second: in the ark, the ark-cover, the Cherubim,17 the fire, the Shechinah, the Holy Spirit [of Prophecy], and the Urim-we-Thummim [the Oracle Plate]? — I will tell you, They were present, but they were not as helpful [as before].
Our Rabbis taught: There are six different kinds of fire: Fire which eats but does not drink; fire which drinks but does not eat; fire which eats and drinks; fire which consumes dry matter as well as moist matter; and fire which pushes fire away; fire which eats fire. ‘Fire which eats but does not drink’: that is our fire [water quenches it]; ‘which drinks but does not eat’: the fever of the sick; ‘eats and drinks’: that of Elijah, for it is written: And licked up the water that was in the trench;18 ‘eats both dry and moist matter’: the fire of the pile of wood; ‘fire which pushes other fire away’: that of Gabriel;19 and ‘fire which eats fire’: that of the Shechinah, for a Master said: He put forth His finger among them and burned them.20 [It is stated above], ‘But the smoke arising from the pile of wood, even all the winds of the world could not move it from its place’. But [did not] R. Isaac b. Abdimi Say: ‘On the night following21 the last day of the [Sukkoth] Festival all were gazing upon the smoke arising from the pile of wood. If it inclined northward, the poor rejoiced and the people of means were sad, because the rains of the coming year would be abundant and their fruits would rot.22 If it inclined southward, the poor were depressed and the men of means rejoiced, for there would be little rain that year and the fruit could be preserved. If it inclined eastwards, all rejoiced;23 if westwards all were depressed’?24 — It merely means that it swayed hither and thither like a tree, but it was not scattered. The Master said: [If it inclined] eastward all rejoiced: westward — all were depressed. There is a contradiction against it: The east wind is always good ‘ the west wind always bad, the north wind benefits wheat when it has grown to one third [of its usual height], and is bad for olives when they are budding; the south wind is bad for wheat which has grown one third [of its normal size] and good for olives when they are budding and R. Joseph or Mar Zutra said, in connection therewith, as a sign: The table was in the north, and the candlestick in the south,25 i.e., the one [north wind] grows what is good for the table,26 and the other [south wind] what is good for the candlestick?27 — This is no contradiction: the former statement refers to us,28 the latter to them.29 [
(1) חוצץ. The root ‘hazaz’ means to cut off, to divide, to serve as an intervening object.
(2) Wooden utensils which are not intended to be moved (as e.g., a table) are not only not susceptible to uncleanness, but they form a barrier against uncleanness, effectively preventing its spread. This is inferred from the passage: And upon whatsoever any of them, when they are dead, doth fall, it shall be unclean; whether it be any vessel of wood, or raiment, or skin, or sack (Lev. XI, 32). In this passage sack and vessel of wood are cited together, hence our Sages infer that just as a sack is movable and moved, so uncleanness can befall only such wooden vessels as are movable and moved; whereas a wooden vessel meant to rest (or have things placed thereon) is different and hence unsusceptible.
(3) The table being taken out periodically to be shown to the pilgrims was no longer considered an immovable object and became susceptible to uncleanness, and the miracle consisted in the fact that nevertheless it never actually became unclean,
(4) I Sam. XXI, 7.
(5) Infra 39b.
(6) Ps. LXXII, 16. Hence there are fruits in Lebanon. But Lebanon was identified with the Sanctuary (Git. 56b), thus the paraphrase of the trees and the winds to create the rustling.
(7) Nahum I, 4.
(8) Isa, XXXV, 2.
(9) And therefore not included.
(10) Either as the simple text suggests, the fire, majestically, quietly; or, as Rashi has it: ‘It’ refers to a great lump of coal which fell from heaven in the days of Solomon and stayed there until the time of Manasseh; that lump having the form of a lion.
(11) Lit., ‘private (man)’ — not part of the altar wood, but wood which was brought in addition and unaffected by the special property of the holy fire.
(12) Lev, I, 7.
(13) Infra 53a.
(14) The first Sanctuary was held in great reverence, itself, its priests, its influence. The second came to be held in disrespect. The above tradition may well reflect the attitude towards both, as crystallized in the Aggada. Therefore the very pile of wood ‘was lying like a lion’ in David's Temple, and appeared ‘lying like a dog’ in the second.
(15) Hag. I, 8: Go up to the hill-country and bring wood, and build the house; and I will take pleasure in it and I will be glorified, saith the Lord.
(16) The numerical value of ה is five.
(17) The first three form one unit.
(18) I Kings XVIII, 38: Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed . . . and licked up.
(19) Pes. 118a, ref. to Dan.III, 27.
(20) The angels objecting to the creation of man. The angels are of fire, v. Sanh. 38b.
(21) V. R. H. 16a: At the Feast of Tabernacles the World is judged through water. V. Ta'an. 2a. Hence the anxiety to watch for the decision from the direction of the wind.
(22) Hence they would have to sell them fast, i.e., cheaply.
(23) Because it meant average rain, plenty of fruit, without danger of rotting so that the merchants could charge moderate prices.
(24) Because it dries up the seeds, and causes famine, v. B.B. 147a. At any rate the smoke moved, which contradicts the statement above.
(25) Sc. in the Sanctuary.
(26) Wheat for the shewbread.
(27) Oil of the olive.
(28) For Babylonia, which is always full of moisture, the east wind is good.
(29) For Palestine, which is dry, full of mountains and hills, it is bad.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 22a
MISHNAH. ORIGINALLY WHOSOEVER1 DESIRED TO REMOVE [THE ASHES FROM] THE ALTAR DID SO. IF THEY WERE MANY, THEY WOULD RUN AND MOUNT THE RAMP2 [OF THE ALTAR] AND HE THAT CAME FIRST WITHIN FOUR CUBITS3 OBTAINED THE PRIVILEGE. IF TWO WERE EVEN, THE OFFICER4 WOULD SAY TO THEM [ALL:]5 RAISE THE FINGER!6 AND HOW MANY DID THEY PUT FORTH? ONE OR7 TWO BUT ONE DID NOT PUT FORTH THE THUMB IN THE TEMPLE.8 IT ONCE HAPPENED THAT TWO WERE EVEN AS THEY RAN TO MOUNT THE RAMP. ONE OF THEM PUSHED HIS FELLOW WHO FELL AND BROKE HIS LEG. WHEN THE COURT SAW THAT THEY INCURRED DANGER, THEY ORDAINED THAT THE ALTAR BE CLEARED ONLY BY COUNT. THERE WERE FOUR COUNTS. THIS IS THE FIRST COUNT.
GEMARA. But why did our Rabbis not establish the count for this service from the beginning? They thought, Since it was a night service, it would not be considered so precious and they [many priests] would not come. But when they saw that [many] were coming and incurred danger,9 they arranged the count. But the burning on the altar of the limbs and fat-pieces is also a night service, and yet our Rabbis arranged a count for it? — It is rather the end of the service of the day.10 But the other11 too is the beginning of the service of the day, for R. Johanan said: If he sanctified his hands [by washing]12 for clearing the ashes off the altar he need not in the morning sanctify them again,13 because he has sanctified them already from the beginning of the service?14 — Say: Because he has from the beginning15 sanctified his hands for the service. Some say:16 First they [the Rabbis] believed that since [many of them] are overcome by sleep, they would not come [to this night service], but when they saw they were coming and incurring danger, our Rabbis arranged for the count. But with the burning of the limbs and fat-pieces, [taking also place at a time when] they are also overcome by sleep and yet our Rabbis arranged for a count? There is a difference between going to sleep and rising from sleep.17
But was the arrangement due to that consideration, was it not rather due to another consideration, for it has been taught:18 He who obtained the task of clearing the altar of the ashes thereby also obtained the ordering of the pile of wood on the altar and of the two pieces of wood?19 — R. Ashi said: There were two arrangements. First they [the Rabbis] opined that they would not come [at night], but when they saw that the priests did come and incurred danger, they arranged for the count. When the count had been arranged, they did not come, for they said: ‘Who can tell whether the lot will fall on me’ [therefore] they [the Rabbis] arranged that he who had obtained the task of clearing the ashes off the altar, should thereby also obtain the task of arranging the piles of wood and the two pieces of wood, in order that they might come and submit to the count.
IF THEY WERE MANY etc.: R. Papa said: It is obvious to me [that within four cubits does] not [refer to] the four cubits on the floor,20 because we learnt: THEY WOULD RUN AND MOUNT THE RAMP; neither does it mean the first21 [four cubits], because we learnt: THEY WOULD RUN AND MOUNT THE RAMP, and after that: HE THAT CAME FIRST WITHIN FOUR CUBITS; neither does it mean [four cubits] in the middle because this is not clearly indicated; hence it is self-evident that it means [four cubits] off the altar. But R. Papa asked: Do these four cubits, of which we have spoken, include the one cubit of the [projecting] base and the one cubit of the gallery,22
(1) There were twenty-four divisions
(Mishmaroth) of the priests, each division (Mishmar, v. Glos.) consisting of four to nine families (Bate Aboth). Every week another division did service in the Sanctuary, being relieved on the Sabbath. During the week they distributed the service among the families. (V. Tosef. Ta'an. II.) Any one among the family (Beth-Ab, v. Glos.) whose turn came on that day, could originally, if he so desired, remove the ashes from the altar.
(2) The ramp, at the south of the altar, led up to it. Its length was thirty-two cubits.
(3) Off the altar.
(4) Memuneh. Lit., ‘the appointed one’ general term for temple official of high rank. Here the officer in charge of the count; v. Shek. V, 1.
(5) Not to the two alone, but to all that were present.
(6) So that the decision would be reached by the count. The officer would place them in a (circular) queue, take the mitre off one of them, and after having named a number, would start counting from that man by the fingers put forth. The priest with whom the number was reached, secured the task.
(7) There may be some older, weaker, or sick priests for whom it was inconvenient to put one finger forth and hold it aloft until the count was over. Whenever one such handicapped priest was present, the officer would require all to put forth two fingers, which is less of an effort.
(8) A trickster foreseeing where the count would end, might place his index-finger at some distance from the thumb, so that the officer would count his two fingers as belonging to two people, with the result that the count would be wrong and designed to serve the trickster's end.
(9) By racing together, they might push one another down.
(10) And so considered important by the priests.
(11) The removal of the ashes.
(12) V. Ex. XXX, 19.
(13) Unless he should leave the Temple, when another sanctification by washing would be due.
(14) Hence it is the beginning of the service, and the argument is void.
(15) Interpret R. Johanan's word to mean: He sanctified himself from the beginning (during the night) for the service.
(16) In answer to the question: why was this count not arranged from the very first?
(17) A man will find it easier to postpone the hour of sleep than to rise from sleep early in the morning (for the purpose of clearing the altar of the ashes).
(18) Infra 28a.
(19) Two logs of wood, placed above the pile of wood on the altar. V. infra 26b. These being considered an important service would require a count.
(20) Before reaching the ramp.
(21) At the foot of the ramp.
(22) Sobeb. Lit., ‘a ring’, or ‘hoop’; here a gallery round the altar for the priest to walk on.
Talmud - Mas. Yoma 22b
or does it mean exclusive of the one cubit base and one cubit gallery?1 — [The question] stands.
IF TWO WERE EVEN, THE OFFICER WOULD SAY TO THEM: RAISE THE FINGER, etc.
A Tanna taught: Put forth your fingers for the count. But let him count them?2 — That supports the statement of R. Isaac, for R. Isaac said: It is forbidden to count Israel even for [the purpose of fulfilling] a commandment, as it is written: And he numbered them be-bezek [with pebbles].3 R. Ashi demurred to this: Whence do you know that the word ‘bezek’ is here used in the sense of being broken [i.e., pebbles], perhaps it is the name of a place, as it is written: And they found Adoni-Bezek in Bezek?4 — Rather it is from here: And Saul summoned the people and numbered them with telaim5 [sheep].
R. Eleazar said: Whosoever counts Israel, transgresses a [biblical] prohibition, as it is said: Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured.6 R. Nahman b. Isaac said: He would transgress two prohibitions, for it is written: ‘Which cannot be measured nor numbered’. R. Samuel b. Nahmani said: R. Jonathan raised an objection: It is written: ‘Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea,’ and it is also written: ‘Which cannot be numbered?’7 This is no contradiction: Here8 it speaks of the time when Israel fulfils the will of the Lord, there of the time when they do not fulfil His will. Rabbi,9 on behalf of Abba Jose son of Dosthai, said: This is no contradiction: Here it speaks of [counting done] by human beings, there of counting by Heaven.10 R. Nehilai b. Idi said in the name of Samuel: As soon as a man is appointed administrator of a community, he becomes rich — First it was written: ‘And he counted them by means of pebbles,’ and, in the end, ‘And he counted them by means of sheep’. But perhaps these sheep were of their own? — Then what is remarkable about it?11
And he strove in the valley.12 R. Mani said: Because of what happens ‘in the valley’: When the Holy One, blessed be He, said to Saul: Now go and smite Amalek,13 he said: If on account of one person the Torah said: Perform the ceremony of the heifer whose neck is to be broken,14 how much more [ought consideration to be given] to all these persons! And if human beings sinned, what has the cattle committed; and if the adults have sinned, what have the little ones done?15 A divine voice came forth and said: Be not righteous overmuch.16 And when Saul said to Doeg: Turn thou and fall upon the priests,17 a heavenly voice came forth to say: Be not overmuch wicked.18
R. Huna said: How little does he whom the Lord supports need to grieve or trouble himself! Saul sinned once and it brought [calamity] upon him, David sinned twice and it did not bring evil upon him — What was the one sin of Saul? The affair with Agag.19 But there was also the matter with Nob,20 the city of the priests? — [Still] it was because of what happened with Agag that Scripture says: It repenteth Me that I have set up Saul to be king.21 What were the two sins of David? — The sin against Uriah22 and that [of counting the people to which] he was enticed.23 But there was also the matter of Bathsheba?24 — For that he was punished, as it is written, And he shall restore the lamb fourfold:25 the child, Amnon, Tamar and Absalom.26 But for the other sin he was also punished as it is written: So the Lord sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning even to the time appointed?27 — There his own body was not punished — But in the former case, too, his own body was not punished either?28 Not indeed? He was punished on his own body, for Rab Judah said in the name of Rab: For six months David was smitten with leprosy, the Sanhedrin removed from him, and the Shechinah departed from him, as it is written: Let those that fear Thee return unto me, and they that know Thy testimonies,29 and it is also written: Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation.30 But Rab said that David also listened to evil talk?31 — We hold like Samuel [who says] that David did not do so. And even according to Rab, who says that David listened to calumny, was he not punished for it? For Rab Judah said in the name of Rab. At the time when David said to Mephibosheth: I say: Thou and Ziba divide the land,32 a heavenly voice came forth to say to him: Rehoboam and Jeroboam will divide the Kingdom.
Saul33 was a year old34 when he began to reign. R. Huna said: Like an infant of one year, who had not tasted the taste of sin. R. Nahman b. Isaac demurred to this: Say perhaps: Like an infant of one year old that is filthy with mud and excrement?35 R. Nahman thereupon was shown a frightening vision in his dream, whereupon he said: I beg your pardon,36 bones of Saul, son of Kish. But he saw again a frightening vision in his dream, whereupon he said: I beg your pardon, bones of Saul, son of Kish,37 King in Israel.
Rab Judah said in the name of Samuel: Why did the kingdom of Saul not endure? Because no reproach rested on him,38 for R. Johanan had said in the name of R. Simeon b. Jehozadak: One should not appoint any one administrator of a community, unless he carries a basket of reptiles on his back, so that if he became arrogant, one could tell him: Turn around!39
Rab Judah said in the name of Rab: Why was Saul punished? Because he forewent the honour due to himself, as it is said: But certain base fellows said: ‘How shall this man save us?’ And they despised him and brought him no present. But he was as one that held his peace,40 and it is written [immediately following that]: Then Nahash the Ammonite came up and encamped against Jabesh-gilead.41 R. Johanan further said in the name of R. Simeon b. Jehozadak: Any scholar,
(1) [The altar was constructed with two rebatements of two cubits, one cubit at the base and another at the Sobeb; and R. Papa's query is whether these two cubits are to be included in the four cubits distance, so that the real distance measured in a straight line from the main structure of the altar would be six cubits.]
(2) By heads.
(3) I Sam. XI, 8.
(4) Judg. I, 5.
(5) I Sam. XV, 4.
(6) Hosea II, 1. ‘Cannot be numbered’ is interpreted-and grammatically there is no solid objection as ‘should not, must not be numbered’, thus a positive statement becomes a prohibition. The assumption is justified that here again the ultimate basis of the prohibition is not this passage, but the passage is a peg on which to hang the idea. There are more obvious sources of the prohibition known to the disputants.
(7) Ibid. The sand of the sea, however tremendous the number of grains, yet could be counted. Why then the second part of the passage which cannot be numbered’? It is true this verse is divested of its simple meaning, which does not permit this dichotomy. But again the major purpose of the questioner is to drive home a moral.
(8) When Israel fulfils the Lord's commands, it will become infinite, beyond the possibility of a count: if it does not live up to His law, it may, nevertheless, be great in number, but it will be countable.
(9) Another reading: R. Assi. There is no valid objection to the text here.
(10) Maharsha: Human beings would weary of counting, because of the great number.
(11) That Scripture mentions it especially. E.V. takes ‘Telaim’ to be the name of a place.
(12) I Sam. XV, 5. E.V.: ‘And he lay in wait’. Saul was thus ‘striving because of what happens in the valley’, i.e., he argued from that ceremony against the slaying of the Amalekites. V. Gruenberg, s. Exeg. Beitraege, III, index.
(13) I Sam. XV, 3.
(14) Deut. XXI, 1-9.
(15) I Sam. XV, 3:Slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.
(16) Eccl. VII, 16.
(17) I Sam. XXII, 18.
(18) Eccl. VII, 17.
(19) I Sam. XV, 2ff
(20) Ibid. XXII, 19.
(21) Ibid. XV, 11.
(22) II Sam. XI, 2-27.
(23) Ibid. XXIV, 1.
(24) He had committed adultery in addition to having instigated murder.
(25) II Sam. XII, 6. He had unconsciously prophesied his own punishment.
(26) All of whom died during his lifetime; thus he paid four of his ‘lambs’ for the one he had unrighteously taken from its master.
(27) II Sam. XXIV, 15.
(28) Just as here the people died and not he, so was it his children, but not he, who were afflicted because of his sin.
(29) Ps. CXIX, 79.
(30) Ibid. LI, 14.
(31) The evil reports of Ziba against Mephibosheth. So that he committed a third sin.
(32) II Sam. XIX, 30.
(33) I Sam. XIII, 1.
(34) The literal interpretation being impossible because of earlier texts, the Rabbis endeavour to find therein homiletical suggestion.
(35) R. Nahman was not actuated by any animus against Saul. He objected primarily to the too ready way of moralizing in advance of textual equivocality. With even justice one could illustrate an opposite aspect of infancy, and an analogy would thus throw evil light on King Saul.
(36) His conscience smote him afterwards, for in his eagerness to demonstrate the error of hasty interpretation, he had offended the memory of Saul.
(37) His conscience was not at rest, until he had fully realized that he had offended the King of Israel. His dreams reflected his thoughts by day, and only after his second apology did he feel relieved.
(38) On Saul's descent. None could therefore prevent his arrogance by pointing to a family skeleton, saying: Turn around and your basket of reptiles (family ignominy) will stand revealed.
(39) V. preceding note.
(40) I Sam. X, 27.
(41) Ibid. XI, 1, hence, because immediately following, viewed as consequence of his too great humility.
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