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Bava Metzia 40



(a) According to our Mishnah, a Shomer deducts nine half Kabin per Kur for wheat and rice. For ...
1. ... barley and millet - he deducts nine Kabin per Kur.
2. ... spelt and flax seeds - three Sa'ah per Kur. Note, that each amount is double the one that precedes it.
(b) There are a hundred and eighty Kabin in a Kur.

(c) According to the Tana Kama, the above Shiur is both per Kur and per annum. Rebbi Yochanan ben Nuri argues that the mice do not eat more because there are more Kurin. Consequently, one only deducts the given amounts per annum, irrespective of how many Kurin there are (see Tosfos DH 'Ela').

(a) According to Rebbi Yehudah, if the Shomer was looking after many Kurin, he does not need to deduct so much. The Shiur of 'many Kurin' is - ten.

(b) Rebbi Yehudah's reason is - because one tends to place the crops into the barns in the summer when they are dry. Consequently, when the Shomer returns them in the winter, when they have expanded, he automatically returns more, and the expansion of ten Kurin exceeds what the mice eat from two or three Kurin (see Maharsha).

(c) The problem with the Tana's Shiur for rice (nine half Kabin per Kur) is - that we know for a fact that the loss of rice is greater than that.

(a) The Beraisa corroborates the statements of ...
1. ... Rabah bar bar Chanah Amar Rebbi Yochanan, who (in answer to the Kashya we just asked) establishes the Shiur of rice in our Mishnah - by peeled rice (because by unpeeled rice, we also have to contend with the peels which get blown around).
2. ... Rebbi Yochanan Amar Rebbi Chiya establishes the flax-seeds in our Mishnah - by flax-seeds still in their stalks, because the stalks tend to dry and drop off.
(b) In a case of pure flax-seeds without the stalks - the loss would be less significant.

(c) The Rabbanan (quoted in a Beraisa) counter Rebbi Yochanan ben Nuri's argument that the mice do not eat more because there are more Kurin - by pointing out to him that it is not only the mice that are responsible for the losses, but that a lot of the produce gets lost and a blown away by the wind (see also Tosfos DH 've'Chi').

(a) Our Mishnah specifies how much one deducts for the losses of the various commodities listed in the Mishnah. The reason that the Shomer is responsible for those losses, and does not just return whatever there is - because the Tana is speaking when the Shomer mixed the crops together with his own crops.

(b) The Shomer cannot just ...

1. ... separate his own crops from the Pikadon and return the rest - because we are speaking when he constantly took from his own crops.
2. ... assess how much he used and deduct it from the total - because he does not know how much he used.
(c) Rabah bar bar Chanah gives the Shiur of Midah Merubah (of Rebbi Yehudah) as ten Kur, which we prove to be correct - from a Beraisa to bear it out.
(a) A Beraisa expert cited a Beraisa confining our Mishnah (which deducts the Chesronos) to a case where the owner gave the Shomer the corn in the barn, and the Shomer returned it in the barn, but not when he returned it from the house - because the measure that is used in the house is smaller than that of the barn, in which case he has already deducted the difference between the two measures [though it is unclear how we then interpret 'Mipnei she'Mosiros']).

(b) Rav Nachman rejected this version of the Beraisa - on the grounds that the owner would not be so stupid as to hand his crops to the Shomer with a big measuring-stick, and receive them with a small one.

(c) He therefore amended it to read - that the Din of deducting only applies if the owner gave the Shomer the corn in the barn-season, and the Shomer returned it in the barn-season, but not when he returned it in the rain-season (as we explained in our Mishnah according to Rebbi Yehudah).

(d) Rav Papa asked Abaye why, in that case, jars of produce that are kept from the summer to the winter do not burst. It happened once that such a jar did burst - because it was not jammed full, but jars that are choc-a-block full of produce will not burst, because the crops do not have room to expand (Shitah Mekubetzes).

(a) The Tana Kama gives the Shiur of Chesronos for wine as a sixth (which becomes absorbed in the barrel). Rebbi Yehudah - as a fifth.

(b) Our Mishnah gives the Shiur for the loss of oil as three Lugin per hundred - one and a half for dregs, and one and a half for absorption.

(c) Consequently ...

1. ... if the oil is purified - one deducts only one and a half Lugin.
2. ... if the oil is stored in an old barrel - likewise.
(d) Rebbi Yehudah rules that someone who purchases pure oil in the course of the year - must expect to receive one and a half Lugin per hundred of dregs.
(a) If the Tana Kama and Rebbi Yehudah in our Mishnah do not argue, then (aside from the possibility that they used different kinds of earthenware) the former gives the Shiur for wine as a sixth - because in the town of the Tana Kama, it was customary to line the barrel with wax, which absorbs less, whereas the latter gives the Shiur as a fifth - because in his town it was customary to line it with pitch, which absorbed more.

(b) When Rav Yehudah became a wine-merchant, he sold wine which he had bought for six Zuz per barrel at six Kuzim per Zuz. Seeing as each barrel contained forty-eight Kuzim, after deducting a sixth (eight Lugin [like the Tana Kama of our Mishnah]) Rav Yehudah was now making four Kuzim profit.

(c) A merchant is permitted to earn - up to a sixth for a livelihood.

(d) Rav Yehudah did not allow a profit of another two Kuzim to make up the sixth - because he also gained the barrel and the dregs, which was included in the six Zuz that he paid the producer.

(a) We account for the fact that the four Kuzim plus the barrel and the dregs add up to more than a sixth, which is in excess of the maximum profit permitted - by deducting the trouble to sell the wine plus the 'D'mei Barzenaysa' (the cost of fitting a tap).

(b) 'Barzenaysa' refers to the cost of fitting a tap to the barrel. Others have the text 'Karzenaysa'. 'Karzenaysa' means - to the cost of hiring a salesman to announce his wine and to sell it.




(a) We learned in our Mishnah that if the wine is placed in old barrels, the Shomer does not contend with absorption. To answer the Kashya 've'Ha I Efshar de'Lo Bala?', Rav Nachman establishes the Mishnah by barrels that have been lined with pitch. True, we did learn earlier that the pitch itself absorbs - but that is only in the case of new barrels, but not by old ones (which become saturated quicker than the barrels themselves (see Tosfos).

(b) Abaye dismisses the Kashya. According to him, once the barrels become saturated, they will no longer absorb.

(c) Rebbi Yehudah permits a seller of pure oil to give the purchaser one a half Lugin of dregs per hundred Lugin. The Chachamim forbid it. Abaye explains - that according to Rebbi Yehudah, a seller is permitted to mix the dregs in the barrel of oil when selling purified oil (Ss'tam, without the purchaser having specified that he wants pure oil). Consequently, the seller has a 'Migu' (since he could have mixed the dregs ... ); whereas the Rabbanan forbid mixing them.

(d) The purchaser cannot argue that ...

1. ... had he received the dregs mixed with the oil, he could at least have sold them, whereas as a separate entity, they are useless to him - because the Mishnah is speaking (not about a a store-keeper buying oil, but) about a private person buying oil, who would prefer to receive the oil in a pure state.
2. ... the fact that the seller did not mix them indicates that he was Mochel them - because Rebbi Yehudah does not hold of Mechilah, as we shall now see.
(a) In the Mishnah in Bava Basra, the Tana Kama holds that someone who buys a yoke has not automatically bought the oxen, and vice-versa. Rebbi Yehudah says - that the price that the buyer pays will indicate whether the one includes the other or not (if for example, he paid two hundred Zuz for the yoke, since this is an exorbitant price to pay for a yoke, he must have meant to include the oxen in the price.

(b) The basis of their Machlokes is - whether a person is Mochel the extra money (the Chachamim) or not (Rebbi Yehudah).

(c) Rav Papa disagrees with Abaye's interpretation of Rebbi Yehudah and Rabbanan in our Mishnah. According to him - it is the Rabbanan who permit the seller to mix the dregs. Should he fail to do so, the purchaser can claim that he must have been Mochel, and decline to accept them separately; whereas Rebbi Yehudah forbids the seller to mix the dregs. Consequently, were one to forbid him to mix them, what sort of businessman would he then be, if he merely sold what he bought (since the dregs constitute part of an oil-merchant's profit ['Z'von ve'Zavin Tagra Ikri'?].

(a) The Beraisa equates a buyer with a depositor with regard to Piktim - the waste pits that float to the top of the oil (also known as 'Shemen Achur').

(b) He cannot mean that a depositor, like a buyer, does not need to accept them - because what is the buyer supposed to do with the seller's pits?

(c) What he means is - just as a depositor must accept the Piktim, so too, must a purchaser.

(a) Rebbi Yehudah says in a Beraisa, that the seller is obligated to retain the Piktim - because the purchaser is already obligated to accept the dregs.

(b) We reconcile this with the previous Beraisa, which obligates the purchaser to accept the Piktim - by establishing the latter when he pays in Tishri (when the oil is cheaper because it is as yet unpurified) and receives it in Nisan, and the former, when he also pays in Nisan (when the oil costs more because it has already been purified).

(a) In a case where someone deposited a barrel by his friend without designating a fixed location for it, and the barrel broke whilst he was moving it, the Tana of our Mishnah makes a distinction - whether it broke whilst he was moving it for his own benefit (in which case he will be liable), or for the benefit of the article (in which case he will be Patur).

(b) If it broke ...

1. ... after he replaced it - he is Patur.
2. ... either before or after he replaced it, if the owner designated a specific location - he is always liable if he was moving it for his own benefit, but Patur if he was moving it for the benefit of the Pikadon.
(c) We establish the Reisha of the Mishnah, which exempts the Shomer from paying once he has replaced the article, like Rebbi Yishmael, who says in a Beraisa that, if someone stole a lamb from someone's flock or a Sela from someone's purse - and returned it (even without informing the owner), he is Patur, because he holds 'Lo Ba'inan Da'as Ba'alim'.

(d) According to Rebbi Akiva - he will be liable, because he holds 'Ba'inan Da'as Ba'alim'.

(e) The Tana of our Mishnah refers specifically to where the owner did not designate a location for the barrel (not to preclude where he did, but) - because that would be obvious, seeing as he returned it to its designated place.

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