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prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem

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Bava Basra 12

BAVA BASRA 12 - dedicated by Rabbi Kornfeld's father in memory of his aunt, Malka Gitel bas Reb Yakov Mordechai (Malvina Marmorstein), who took him into her home and raised him like her own child after the Holocaust. Her Yahrzeit is 20 Nisan.



(a) If a minor road leads from town a. through town b., and which the former use to enter the latter, should the latter want to seal its entrance into their town - Rabah bar bar Chanah Amar Rebbi Yochanan forbids them to do so, because the people from town a. have a Chazakah (a right to travel) along that road.

(b) We learn that this Halachah applies even if there is another way of entering the town, from Rav Yehudah Amar Rav, who said that one has no right to spoil a path which the public has established as theirs.

(a) Rav Anan Amar Shmuel forbids the residents of a Mavoy to seal the exit from the Mavoy to the main street into which it leads - because sometimes, when the main street is crowded, the crowds spill into the Mavoy.

(b) We suggest that Shmuel's Din is equivalent to that of Rebbi Zeira Amar Rav Nachman - who considers the last four Amos in a Mavoy leading on to the main street as part of the main street.

(c) We refute this suggestion however, on the grounds - that Rav Nachman is speaking exclusively about the Din of Tum'ah (i.e. 'Safek Tum'ah bi'Reshus ha'Rabim, Tahor; bi'Reshus ha'Yachid, Tamei').

(d) The ramifications of this rejection are - that Rav Nachman's ruling is not confined to the four Amos in the Mavoy closest to the Reshus-ha'Rabim, but applies anywhere in the Mavoy.

(a) The Tana Kama of our Mishnah requires each person to receive nine Kabin in a field that is to be divided, Rebbi Yehudah, four and a half. In fact - they do not argue. Each one is simply stating the Minhag in his town, based perhaps, on the quality of the ground (see Tosfos and Rabeinu Gershom).

(b) 'Radu' is the Aramaic for 'NIA' (plowing). 'bei ...

1. ... Karma' means' - a field the size that takes one day to plow in the plowing season.
2. ... Zar'a' - a field the size that takes one day to plow in the planting season.
(c) A 'bei-Zar'a is easier to plow than a bei-Karba' - because it has already been plowed that year in the plowing season.

(d) Based on this fact, the problem with Rav Yosef's statement that in Bavel, each partner has to receive 'bei-Radu Yoma' before one partner may force the other to divide a jointly-owned field is - that (if) 'bei Radu Yoma' (refers to a day) in the planting season, will entail less than two full days work in the plowing season (so how will he hire workers to do his plowing then)? Whereas (if it refers to) a day in the plowing season, then it entails less than one day's work in the planting season, resulting in the same problem.

(a) We resolve the problem in one of two ways. When we say 'I Ba'is Eima ...
1. ... Yoma de'Karba, be'Asra de'Yoma de'Karba ve'Tani', we mean - that Rav Yosef was referring to a day in the plowing season, and in the planting season, they would plow a second time (see Tosfos and Rabeinu Gershom).
2. ... Yoma de'Zar'a, be'Asra de'Zar'a ba'Haduri' - that he is referring to a day in the planting season, which would actually take a full day, because, on the return journey, they would plant as they plowed (Tosfos).
(b) The equivalent Shiur ...
1. ... for a jointly-owned well - Rav Nachman gives as the size that can be watered in one day.
2. ... for a vineyard - Shmuel's father gives as an area of three Kabin (a quarter of the area of the Mishkan [100x50 Amos]).
(c) This is substantiated by Sumchus in a Beraisa, who stated that if Reuven undertakes to sell Shimon a 'portion' in a vineyard, he is obligated to give him three Kabin, on which Rebbi Yossi commented - 'Ein Eilu Ela Divrei Nevi'us' (meaning that he arrived at the truth, even though there is no reason for it).

(d) Rava bar Kisna gives the Shiur in Bavel as three groups of vines. each group consisting of - twelve vines. The reason for this is because this is what constitutes one day's plowing.

(a) We object to Rav Dimi from Chaifa's statement that since the destruction of the Beis-Hamikdash, prophecy was withdrawn from the prophets and given to the Chachamim - because the Chachamim were always Nevi'im too (though their power of prophecy differs in different ways from that of the Nevi'im).

(b) What he really meant to say was - that although Nevi'us was withdrawn from the Nevi'im, it was never withdrawn from the Chachamim.

(c) Ameimar extrapolates from the Pasuk "ve'Navi Levav Chochmah" - that a Chacham is even greater than a Navi, because one usually compares the smaller to the greater, and not vice-versa.

(a) Abaye tries to prove Rav Dimi from Chaifa's statement - from the fact that it often happens that one Chacham reiterates what another Chacham said (without having heard it from him). See Agados Maharsha.

(b) Rava rejects this proof on the grounds that the two Chachamim are perhaps born under the same Mazel. *He* therefore presents the proof - from the fact that sometimes, a Chacham says something that was said by Rebbi Akiva, who, due to his superior knowledge, must have been born under a different Mazel than the second Chacham.

(c) Rav Ashi rejects Rava's proof on the grounds that the Chacham might be a bar Mazel at least in that one point. He therefore finally proves Rav Dimi's point - by the fact that sometimes, a Chacham reiterates a Halachah le'Moshe mi'Sinai.

(d) And he rejects the Kashya that maybe the Chacham's statement was just a shot in the dark - due to the fact that he accompanies a sound reason with his ruling.




(a) According to Rebbi Yochanan, after the destruction of the Beis-Hamikdash, when prophecy was withdrawn from the prophets - prophecy was granted to the Shotim and Ketanim instead (see Agados Maharsha).

(b) Mar bar Rav Ashi was standing in the main street of Mechuza when he overheard a Shoteh say that whoever signed his name 'Tivyumi' would become the next Rosh Yeshivah in Masa Mechsaya. This was of particular significance to him - because he signed his name 'Tivyumi' (see Agados Maharsha).

(c) So - off he went to Masa Mechsaya.

(d) Upon his arrival in Masa Mechsaya, the Chachamim sent a pair of Chachamim - to consult with him about appointing Rav Acha as the next Rosh Yeshivah.

(a) To secure the position of Rosh Yeshivah in favor of Rav Acha - Mar bar Rav Ashi kept the two Rabbanan by him, until they sent two more ... and so on, until he had ten Chachamim gathered in front of him. Then he proceeded to Darshen with such mastery, that they appointed him Rosh Yeshivah on the spot.

(b) He waited until he had ten Chachamim before proceeding with his D'rashah - because a Rosh Yeshivah would not Darshen (by the Kalah) until there were at least ten Chachamim present.

(c) Rav Acha's reaction to Mar bar Rav Ashi's appointment was - to exclaim 'Kol ha'Meri'in Lo, Lo bi'Meheirah Mativin Lo, ve'Chol ha'Mativin Lo, Lo bi'Meheirah Meri'in Lo'! In other words, he acknowledged that he had lost the position for good.

(a) We support Rebbi Yochanan's statement regarding children from the young daughter of Rav Chisda. When, as a little girl, she was once sitting on the lap of Rav Chisda her father, whilst his young Talmidim Rava and Rami bar Chama stood in front of him - her father asked her which one of them she wanted, and she replied that she wanted both of them (which she later did).

(b) It seems that Rava, who would later refer to her as his favorite wife, was no less a prophet than she was - for he added '... and me last', which is indeed what happened.

(a) Rav Avdimi learns from the Pasuk "Ish Nevuv Yilavev" - that a person who is empty ("Nevuv" means 'hollow', as we learn from the Targum of "Nevuv Luchos" [Terumah, in connection with the Mizbe'ach]), in other words, someone who has an empty stomach has two hearts (meaning that he has difficulty in arriving at a decision).

(b) And Rav Huna B'rei de'Rav Yehoshua learns from the Pasuk in Zecharyah "ve'Sirosh Yenovev Besulos" - that even if one's heart (i.e. mind) is closed like a virgin, it will open up if he becomes accustomed to drinking wine.

(c) He also rules - that one gives a Bechor his Cheilek Bechor and his Cheilek Pashut next to each other (since they are really one double portion).

(d) According to Abaye, the same applies to a Yavam, since the Torah refers to him as a Bechor ("ve'Hayah ha'Bechor Asher Teiled"). Rava disagrees. He extrapolates from the words "ve'Hayah ha'Bechor" - that only *he* is considered a Bechor (to take two portions), but his inheritance is not considered that of a Bechor (to take them in one place).

(a) Reuven purchased a field next to his father's. When, after his father's death, he considered it his right to take the field of his father's that was closest to the one that he purchased - Rabah wanted to uphold his claim on the basis of the principle 'Kofin Oso al Midas S'dom' (meaning that we force a litigant who has nothing to lose, to grant the request of the litigant who stands to gain).

(b) Rav Yosef objected to Rabah's intended ruling, on the grounds - that the brothers can counter that the particular field in question is precious to them like the high-quality fields of bar Meryon.

(c) When the two fields that Reuven and his brother inherited, each contained a canal and Reuven claimed the right to take the field closest to the one that he had purchased, Rabah again wanted to uphold Reuven's claim, and this time Rav Yosef countered - that some canals dry up quicker than others (and his brother's claim that the particular canal in question might outlast the other one, was valid).

(d) Consequently, Reuven's brother could insist - that either they take half of each field together with half of the respective canal, or Reuven must *pay* for the right to take the field and canal of his choice.

(a) In a case where the two brothers inherited two fields which were both watered by the same canal, and where Reuven asked for the field that was nearest to the one that he had purchased - Rav Yosef ruled 'K'gon Zeh, Kofin al Midas S'dom'.

(b) Abaye protest against Rav Yosef's ruling - on the basis of the argument that the brother preferred Reuven to take his two fields one on either side of his field, so that the additional Arisin that Reuven would have to employ would ensure that his field was well-guarded too.

(c) The Halachah ...

1. ... in this case is - like Rav Yosef (because Abaye's argument, which has nothing to do with the quality of the field, is unacceptable).
2. ... in the previous cases, where Rav Yosef argues with Rabah, is - like Rav Yosef, too.
13) The final case in the Sugya concerns a field belonging to two brothers with a river running along the east side and a canal along the north. The only fair way to divide the property in a way that gives neither brother an advantage over the other is - by dividing it diagonally into eight sections, so that Reuven and his brother each receive one section on the east side and one on the north, plus one section on each of the other two sides.

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