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prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem

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Bava Basra 34

BAVA BASRA 34 (11 Iyar) - dedicated by the Feldman family in memory of their mother, ha'Rabbanit Sara Dvosya bas Rav Mordechai (of Milwaukee).


(a) What did the Rabbanan want to rule when Reuven, who claimed that he had purchased a field from Shimon and that he had worked in it for three years, was only able to bring one witness to that effect? Why was that?

(b) They took their cue from 'Naska de'Rebbi Aba'.
What happened there after Reuven grabbed a piece of silver from Shimon?

(c) What would have been the Din there, had ...

  1. ... two witnesses testified that they saw him grabbing the silver?
  2. ... no witnesses had been present, but the knowledge that he had grabbed it came through the admission of Reuven himself?
  3. ... Reuven countered the testimony of the one witness with a denial of having grabbed the object?
(d) What was the problem in that case? Why could Reuven not ...
  1. ... swear on the one hand, to counter the witness?
  2. ... be absolved due to his 'Migu', on the other?
(e) What did Rebbi Aba actually rule there?
(a) It is obvious that in our case, Reuven was obligated to return the field, seeing as he did not have two witnesses.
That being the case, why was it necessary to cite the case of 'Naska de'Rebbi Aba'?

(b) On what grounds did Abaye object to the Rabbanan's comparison between the two cases?

(c) Abaye therefore concluded 'Ela I Damya Ha de'Rebbi Aba, le'Chad Sahada u'le'Tarti Sh'ni u'le'Peiri. What would be the Din if Reuven, who claimed that he had worked in the field for three years and had purchased the field for its Peiros, brought two witnesses that he had established a Chazakah on Shimon's field ...

  1. ... who also testified that he had eaten the fruit during those two years?
  2. ... and he himself admitted that he had eaten the fruit during those two years?
  3. ... and one witness testified that he had eaten the fruit during those two years?
(a) Rav and Shmuel (in Shevu'os) disagree with Rebbi Aba.
What would they have said in the case of 'Naska de'Rebbi Aba'?

(b) On what basis do they rule (with regard to the Mishnah in Shevu'os 've'Chein Yesomim min ha'Yesomim Lo Yipar'u Ela bi'Shevu'ah') in a case where the debtor died before the creditor, that the debtor's Yesomim are Patur from paying?

(c) What would they have ruled had the debtor's Yesomim been able to swear that the debt had been paid?

(d) And what does Rebbi Elazar (who holds like Rebbi Aba) say there?

(a) How does the Sugya in Shevu'os rule regarding to that Machlokes?

(b) On what basis do we nevertheless rule like Rebbi Aba in the case of 'Naska de'Rebbi Aba'?

(c) How do we reconcile the ruling in Shevu'os with the ruling here?

Answers to questions



(a) In the case of the ship over which Reuven and Shimon were arguing, how do we know that neither of the disputants was actually Muchzak in it?

(b) Why did Reuven ask Beis-Din to seize it on his behalf whilst he went to fetch witnesses that the ship was his? Was it to prevent Shimon from making a Chazakah on it?

(c) The argument *for* seizing the ship is that, seeing as, in the event that Reuven failed to find witnesses, Beis-Din would release it, no harm will have been done.
What is the argument against seizing it?

(a) Rav Huna maintained that Beis-Din should seize the ship, because he held like Rav Papa.
What did Rav Papa say, assuming that Beis-Din had seized the ship on behalf of one of the litigants?

(b) What did Rav Yehudah say?

(c) What is Rav Yehudah's reasoning?

(d) When Reuven failed in his attempt to find proof of ownership, what did the Chachamim rule, despite the fact that Beis-Din had, it appears, seized the ship (like Rav Huna)?

7) Finally we ask what the Din will be, if Beis-Din did seize an article on behalf of one of the litigants. We have already cited the opinions of both Rav Yehudah and Rav Papa.
What is the final ruling in the matter?
Answers to questions

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