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prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem

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Bava Basra 126

BAVA BASRA 126-128 - have been generously dedicated by Dick and Beverly Horowitz of Los Angeles, California. May they be blessed with a life of joy and much Nachas from their children and grandchildren.



(a) When Rav Huna Amar Rav Asi says 'Bechor she'Michah Michah', he means - that even though the Bechor does not receive an extra portion from the property that his brothers improved - this will not apply in a case where the Bechor specifically asked them to desist from improving it until he has taken his Cheilek Bechorah. If he did, and they chose to ignore his request, then he may claim an extra portion of what they improved.

(b) The underlying reason behind this ruling is - the fact that the Bechor's Cheilek Bechorah is a Matanah (as we explained earlier) which he has the right to claim at any time (even before the brothers have distributed the property, as we shall see later).

(a) Rabah qualifies Rav Asi's ruling, confining it to where the brothers picked the grapes or the olives, in which case - the Bechor takes an extra portion of grapes without having to pay for his brothers work.

(b) He would not however, receive an extra portion in this way - if his brothers had pressed them and manufactured wine or oil, because then, they would acquire the finished product with 'Shinuy' (having changed the object).

(c) The Bechor would then receive the Cheilek Bechorah from what the grapes or olives were worth when they were picked (to conform with the principle 'M eshalem ke'Sha'as ha'Gezeilah').

(a) The problem with Rav Yosef, who says 'Afilu Darchum' is - how he can argue with the accepted ruling that 'Shinuy is Koneh'.

(b) To explain Rav Yosef, we cite a statement of Rav Ukva bar Chama, who establishes a similar case (though he says it independently, and not in connection with Rav Asi) with regard to the other brother having to pay for damages, should the wine or the oil subsequently spill or go off (and become worth less than the grapes or the oil had been worth when they were picked).

(c) Rav Yosef in fact - does not now argue with Rav Asi, since each one makes an independent statement.

(a) Rav Asi rules 'Bechor she'Natal Cheilek Pashut, Vitro', by which he means - if a Bechor accepts a Cheilek Pashut only, in his father's property, it indications that he is Mochel the Cheilek Bechor.

(b) The basis for Rav Asi's ruling is - the principle that we learned earlier, that the Cheilek Bechorah is a Matanah, which he has the right to be Mochel.

(a) Rav Papa and Rav Papi argue over what Rava said in this regard. According to Rav Papa, Rava said 'Vitro be'Osah Sadeh', according to Rav Papi, he said 'Vitro be'Chol ha'Nechasim'.

(b) The basis of their Machlokes is - whether the Cheilek Bechorah belongs to the Bechor even before the brothers divide it (Rav Papi) or not (Rav Papa).

(c) The basic reason for the ruling of ...

1. ... Rav Papa is - because before the division, it is 'a Davar she'Lo Ba le'Olam', in which case he can neither sell it nor be Mochel it.
2. ... Rav Papi is - because seeing as the entire Cheilek Bechorah is considered his, whenever he decides to take it, we assume ('Anan Sahadi') take this as an indication that he is Mochel the Cheilek Bechorah of that section, and once he does that, we assume tat he is Mochel the entire Cheilek Bechorah (as we just learned).
(d) Neither the Bechor nor any of the brothers - can be Mochel their Cheilek Pashut.
(a) Rav Papa and Rav Papi did not issue their respective rulings directly - only following a case that came before Rava, they expressed their interpretation of Rava's ruling (as we shall now see).

(b) A certain Bechor sold - the entire property belonging to himself and his brother (not just his own Cheilek Bechorah and Cheilek Pashut, as some want to explain).

(c) When ...

1. ... his brother's children went to eat some of the fruit - the purchasers beat them up ...
2. ... and the relatives commented to the purchasers - that not satisfied with purchasing the Yesomim's property without their permission, he also had to beat them up!
(d) Rava ruled 'Lo Asah ve'Lo K'lum' - which Rav Papi confined to the Cheilek Pashut (both his and that of the Yesomim), but not of the Cheilek Bechorah, which was his to sell at any time, but Rav Papa extended it to the Cheilek Bechorah as well, as we explained above).



(a) 'Shalchu mi'Tam, Bechor she'Machar Kodem Chalukah, Lo Asah K'lum', because they hold 'Ein Lo li'Bechor Kodem Chalukah'. The Halachah however, is - 'Yesh li'Bechor Kodem Chalukah'.

(b) When Mar Zutra from Darishba, who was a Bechor, divided equally a basket of peppers between himself and his brothers, Rav Ashi told him - that since he had given up his rights to the Cheilek Bechorah in the basket of peppers, he had also given up his rights to it in the remainder of his property.

(a) Our Mishnah invalidates a father's statement ...
1. ... 'Ish P'loni B'ni Bechor' - because maybe he means that he is the Bechor of his mother (who requires Pidyon ha'Ben), but not of himself.
2. ... 'Ish P'loni B'ni Lo Yirash Im Echav' - because the Torah declares his son to be a Yoresh (and how can anyone negate what the Torah says ['Masneh al Mah she'Kasuv ba'Torah'])?
(b) If a father wanted to declare his son the Bechor to inherit a double portion, Rav Yosef will teach us, he would need to say - 'Ish P'loni B'ni Bechori' (leaving us in no doubt that he was his Bechor, and not [just] the B'chor of his mother).

(c) It is possible for a person to deprive one of his sons of his inheritance - by giving his property as a Matanah to his other sons, or to anybody else, during his lifetime.

(d) Such a procedure would normally require a Kinyan - unless he was a Sh'chiv-Mera giving away all his property.

(a) The Tana permits a father to give even the Cheilek Bechorah to one of his sons, provided he uses a Lashon Matanah - like the Rabbanan. According to Rebbi Yochanan ben Berokah, provided he gives his property to another heir, he may even use a Lashon Yerushah.

(b) The Tana presents specifically a case of brothers and not strangers (not to preclude strangers who are not heirs, but) - to stress that even though the father is giving the Bechorah to other heirs, his words are only valid if he used a Lashon of Matanah, and not of Yerushah.

(c) The Rabbanan concede that even if the father uses a Lashon Yerushah, his words are valid however - as long as he inserts a Lashon Matanah either at the beginning, in the middle or at the end.

(a) Rebbi Meir invalidates any condition that absolves a husband from providing his betrothed wife with food, clothes and marital rights. Rebbi Yehudah -validates the first two, because they concern money, and he holds ('Davar she'be'Mamon, Tena'o Kayam').

(b) We therefore suggest that the author of our Mishnah, which negates a stipulation that discounts an heir from inheriting (a Davar she'be'Mamon), cannot be Rebbi Yehudah. The problem with that would be - that it would not then conform with the principle 'Rebbi Meir ve'Rebbi Yehudah, Halachah ke'Rebbi Yehudah (so why did Rebbi present a S'tam Mishnah [which is not followed by a Machlokes] like Rebbi Meir?).

(c) We reconcile our Mishnah with Rebbi Yehudah however - by differentiating between Kidushin (where the woman knows about the condition, and is Mochel because she considers it worth her while) and Yerushah, where the Bechor stands to gain nothing by being Mochel, and only remained silent in deferrence to his father.

(a) In a case where witnesses testified that someone was a Bechor (regarding inheritance), on the basis of the fact that his father referred to him as 'a foolish Bechor', Rabah bar bar Chanah ruled - that he was probably the Bechor of his mother, but not of his father, since that is what people tended to call a Bechor of his mother.

(b) Shichchas father advised people who complained to him that he had a pain in the eye - to go and see Shichchas his son, since he was a Bechor, and his spit was an acknowledged cure for sore eyes.

(c) Rebbi Chanina accepted their testimony in the knowledge - that it is the Bechor of a father whose spit is good for sore eyes, and not the Bechor of a mother.

(a) A Tumtum is - a person whose sexual organs are covered, and whose sex is therefore unknown.

(b) A Tumtum she'Nikra is - one whose skin was torn open, and whose sex was thereby clarified.

(a) In connection with a Tumtum she'Nikra ...
1. ... Rebbi Ami learns from the Pasuk "*ve'Hayah* ha'Ben *ha'Bechor* la'Seni'ah" - that a Tumtum she'Nikra veNimtza Zachar (whose sex was not known at the time of birth [the reason in all three cases]), does not inherit a double portion.
2. ... Rav Nachman bar Yitzchak learns from the Pasuk "Ki *Yih'yeh* le'Ish ben Sorer u'Moreh" - that a a Tumtum she'Nikra ve'Nimtza Zachar cannot become a ben Sorer u'Moreh.
3. ... Ameimar learns from the Pasuk "*ve'Yaldu* Lo Banim ... ve'Hayah Bein ha'Bechor" - that a Tumtum she'Nikra veNimtza Zachar does not detract from the Cheilek Bechorah.
(b) The case with regard to the latter Halachah is - for example, in the event that a father left nine Manim and three sons, a Bechor, a Pashut and a Tumtum, they divide the nine Manim into three portions (as if there was no Tumtum), of which the Bechor takes one (the three that constitute the Cheilek Bechorah). Then all three sons divide the remaining six Manim between them, and each one receives two Manim.

(c) We learn this from the above Pasuk - which implies that the Bechor only divides his Cheilek Bechorah against children who are known to be sons at the time of birth.

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