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Bava Metzia 112

BAVA METZIA 112-115 - these Dafim have been dedicated anonymously l'Iluy Nishmas Tzirel Nechamah bas Tuvya Yehudah.

1) [line 2] KEVESH - ramp or platform
2) [line 8] "AL TIGZOL DAL KI DAL HU, V'AL TEDAKEI ANI BA'SHA'AR. KI HASH-M YARIV RIVAM V'KAVA ES KOVEIHEM NEFESH." - "Rob not the poor, because he is poor; nor oppress the afflicted in the gate. For HaSh-m will plead their cause, and rob the life of those who rob them." (Mishlei 22:22-23) - This follows the opinion that the word "Nefesh" refers to the Gazlan. According to the opinion that it refers to the Nigzal, the end of the verse is rendered as, "...and rob those who rob them (the Nigzalim) of their lives."

3) [line 11] "KEN ORCHOS KOL BOTZE'A BETZA, ES NEFESH BE'ALAV YIKACH." - "So are the ways of everyone who is greedy of gain; it takes away the life of its owner." (Mishlei 1:19) - The Amora'im likewise argue as to the translation of the word "Be'alav." It can refer to the Nigzal -- "... it (stealing) takes away the life of the owner [of the stolen item]," or to the Gazlan -- "... it (stealing) takes away the life of the [current] owner [of the stolen item, i.e. the Gazlan]. Alternatively, the end of the verse can be translated for the second opinion as "He (HaSh-m) takes away the life of the [current] owner." (See Vilna Ga'on to Mishlei ibid.)

4) [line 13] BE'ALAV D'HASHTA - the current owner of the item, i.e. the Gazlan

5) [line 23] EINO CHOZER - he may not return [to the employer to demand payment of his wages, if the store owner does not give it to him]

6) [line 28] KABLANUS - on a contract basis, where the worker is hired to perform a specific task (such as to fix a utensil, as in the case of our Gemara)

(a) The Amora'im discuss (Bava Kama 99a) whether or not a craftsman -- who, through his labor, improves (or otherwise increases the value of) an item that was given to him -- acquires the item for himself through the improvement that he makes in it (in a way similar to that of a Ganav who acquires the item that he stole by making a Shinuy, a change in the item; see Background to Bava Kama 65:16). The opinion that maintains that the craftsman acquires the item through improving it holds that the craftsman has only an obligation to return the original monetary value ("Chiyuv Damim") of the item to the owner, and the item itself that was improved is considered to be the property of the craftsman. Therefore, when he finishes working on the item and he gives it back to the owner in return for payment for his labor, he is not merely giving back the item to its rightful owner, but rather it is considered as though he is selling the item anew to the owner, in exchange for the money that the owner gives him.

(b) There are a number of Halachic implications for this law.

1. If the craftsman acquires the item by improving it, then if the item becomes ruined after the craftsman made some improvement to it, the craftsman does not have to pay the entire value of the improved item to the owner. It suffices to pay the value of the item at the time that it was given to the craftsman. Since the item became the craftsman's immediately when he made some improvement to it, it is considered *his* item that was ruined and not the item of the original owner.
2. According to the opinion that holds that the craftsman acquires the item through making an improvement in it, it is not possible for the owner to transgress the prohibition of "Lo Salin" (see Background to Bava Kama 99:6) by holding back the craftsman's wages, since the money is not considered wages but rather it is considered money paid to purchase the item anew. (According to this, the only time one will transgress the prohibition of "Lo Salin" is when one hires a worker to work for him by the hour, and not based on the labor that is done for him.)
3. According to this opinion, when a woman gives an item to a craftsman to improve, the craftsman is able to be Mekadesh the woman by giving back the item to her and foregoing his payment. This is because the item is considered to be his, and he is given the woman his own item. According to the opinion that argues and maintains that a craftsman does not acquire the item by improving it, the craftsman cannot be Mekadesh the woman in this way, since the item already belongs to the woman, and the money that she owes him which he foregoes is considered nothing more than a debt that she owes him, and one cannot be Mekadesh a woman by foregoing a debt. (However, according to the opinion that holds "Einah li'Sechirus Ela leva'Sof" (see Background to Bava Kama 99:17), if the craftsman does not acquire the item by improving it, the woman is Mekudeshes. Similar, she is Mekudeshes according to the opinion that holds that one can be Mekadesh a woman by foregoing a loan; see Background to Kidushin 46:10.)
8) [line 30] V'HALVA'AH HI - and it is a loan. That is, the money which the owner of the object owes to the craftsman as payment for the object (since the craftsman is considered to have acquired the object for himself through the improvement that he made to it; see previous entry) is considered a loan from the craftsman to the owner.

9) [line 39] GARDA D'SARBELA - (O.F. flochier) a teaseled white cloak. This refers to rubbing the garment with thistles in order to raise the fibers, giving it a softer feel.

10) [line 39] LI'RECHUCHEI - to soften it
11) [last line] KA AGREI (MINEI) LI'VETUSHEI - (O.F. foledures) he hired him to press it

12) [last line] BITESHA BITESHA BI'ME'ASA - for each pressing, he pays a Me'ah (and thus the craftsman is working not through "Kablanus" but through "Sechirus," as a hired worker)


13a) [line 3] HALACHOS GEDOLOS - great laws (referring to Halachos l'Moshe mi'Sinai)
b) [line 4] TAKANOS GEDOLOS - great enactments (referring to rabbinical enactments)
c) [line 7] TAKANOS KEVU'OS - established enactments (that have the power to suspend the Torah law with regard to which of the litigants must swear)

14) [line 13] LISGERU - in order for workers to want to hire themselves out
15) [line 14] V'YIFKA - and lose [his wage]
16) [line 16] TARUD B'FO'ALIM HU - he is pre-occupied with dealing with all his employees

17) [line 18] KEDEI L'HAFIS DA'ATO SHEL BA'AL HA'BAYIS - in order to appease the worries of the employer

18) [line 20] HAKAFAH - credit [for money owed]
19) [line 20] KATZATZ - agreed upon a set price

The general rule in monetary claims is that the burden of proof rests with the one who wishes to extract payment or other items of value from the other person. Hence, when there is a doubt, all money remains with the one who has possession.

21) [line 23] MIDKAR DECHIREI LEI INSHEI - people certainly remember it
22) [last line] MEKAMEI D'LIMTEYEI ZEMAN CHIYUVEI - before the time comes at which the payment [of the wages] is due

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