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Kidushin, 41

KIDUSHIN 41-42 - Ari Kornfeld has generously sponsored the Dafyomi publications for these Dafim for the benefit of Klal Yisrael.


QUESTION: The Gemara asks why the Mishnah teaches that a man himself can be Mekadesh a woman, when it has already taught that a man's Shali'ach can be Mekadesh a woman on his behalf. If his Shali'ach can do it, then it should be obvious that the man himself can be Mekadesh a woman! Rav Yosef answers that the Mishnah is teaching the principle, "Mitzvah Bo Yoser mib'Shelucho" -- it is considered a greater Mitzvah to do the act oneself than to do it via a Shali'ach.

The Gemara records another version of the question on the Mishnah. The Gemara says that it is *prohibited* to be Mekadesh a woman via a Shali'ach without first seeing her (and thus it is understood why the Reisha of the Mishnah adds that a man should be Mekadesh a woman by himself). Rav Yosef derives his teaching from the Seifa of the Mishnah that says that a woman's Shali'ach may accept Kidushin for her. If a woman's Shali'ach may accept Kidushin for her, then why does the Mishnah have to teach that the woman herself may accept Kidushin? The answer is that the Mishnah is teaching the principle that "Mitzvah Bo Yosef mib'Shelucho."

The Rishonim explain that the Mitzvah which is being performed in our Mishnah is that of "Peru u'Revu." Since it is through the act of Kidushin that the Mitzvah of "Peru u'Revu" can be fulfilled, the Kidushin is also regarded as a Mitzvah.

However, the Gemara in Yevamos (65b) states clearly that a woman is exempt from the Mitzvah of Peru u'Revu! How, then, can our Gemara say that the reason why the Mishnah adds that a woman can accept Kidushin for herself is to teach that "Mitzvah Bo Yoser mib'Shelucho?" She is not performing any Mitzvah by accepting the Kidushin, since she is not at all obligated to fulfilled "Peru u'Revu!"


(a) The RAN explains that even though the woman herself is exempt from "Peru u'Revu" and is therefore not performing her own Mitzvah, she nevertheless is assisting her husband in performing his Mitzvah. This assistance ("Mesa'yei'a l'Devar Mitzvah") is in itself considered a Mitzvah, and we can therefore apply the rule of "Mitzvah Bo Yoser mib'Shelucho."

(b) The SHITAH LO NODA L'MI compares the Mitzvah of "Peru u'Revu" to any other Mitzvah from which a woman is exempt. The Halachah is that even though she is not obligated to fulfill the Mitzvah (such as the Mitzvos of Shofar and Sukah), she may still perform them if she wants and she may even recite a Berachah upon performing them. That is, the fact that she is exempt from those Mitzvos make them *voluntary* and not mandatory for her, and when she does perform them, she is considered to be fulfilling a Mitzvah.

(c) The SEFER HA'MIKNAH suggests that since a woman who lives with a man out of wedlock is considered to be a sin ("Lo Siheyeh Kedeishah"), the act of marriage -- which saves her from transgression -- is considered a Mitzvah.

QUESTION: The Gemara derives from the Mishnah that "Mitzvah Bo Yoser mib'Shelucho," it is considered a greater Mitzvah to do the act oneself than to do it via a Shali'ach. The Gemara proves this principle from the fact that Rava and Rav Safra personally involved themselves in the preparations for Shabbos, rather than letting their helpers do it for them.

The RAMBAM (Hilchos Shabbos 30:8), when writing this Halachah, adds an interesting point. "Even though he was an Adam Chashuv b'Yoser (an extremely important person) and it is not the manner for such a person to buy things in the marketplace nor to be involved in the labors of the house, he is obligated to personally perform things that are for the sake of Shabbos because *this is his honor*." The reasoning the Rambam gives -- "for this is his honor" -- seems to be superfluous. Our Sugya states that the reason one should involve himself personally ("b'Gufo") in the Mitzvah of honoring Shabbos is because "Mitzvah Bo Yoser mib'Shelucho." Why, then, does the Rambam need to give an additional reason, that "this is his honor?"

ANSWER: The BI'UR HALACHAH (OC 250) explains that the Rambam is attempting to reconcile our Gemara with a seemingly contradictory concept. The Gemara in Berachos (20a) states that a Talmid Chacham is not required to do certain Mitzvos when doing them would cause him disgrace (such as carrying a lost sheep to fulfill Hashavas Aveidah). When, then, does our Gemara say that a Talmid Chacham is required to take part in the kitchen work himself, even though, normally, such work is considered below his honor? The Rambam therefore adds "for this is his honor" -- that, on the contrary, there is no greater honor to a Talmid Chacham than to be involved in a Mitzvah.

The PRI MEGADIM (see Bi'ur Halachah there) adds that only when the fulfillment of the Mitzvah is not evident, such as when one carries a sheep when no one knows why he is carrying the sheep, do we say that the honor of the Talmid Chacham (Kavod ha'Bri'os) overrides a Mitzvas Aseh. In contrast, when it is obvious to all that the Talmid Chacham is involved in an act of a Mitzvah (such as preparing for Shabbos), then certainly "this is his honor."

QUESTION: The Gemara teaches that it is prohibited for a father to marry off his daughter as a Ketanah until she grows older and consents. The Rishonim explain that the reason for this Halachah is that we are concerned that she might come to eventually hate her husband and transgress the Mitzvah of "v'Ahavta l'Re'acha Kamocha" (Vayikra 19:18).

The Gemara states earlier that although there is a requirement for a man to see the woman he wants to marry before he is Mekadesh her, a woman does not have to see her future husband because of the assumption that every woman prefers to have a companion than to live alone ("Tav l'Meitav Tan Du..."), even if her husband is uncomely. Why does the same not apply when marrying off a Ketanah? We should not be concerned that when she grows up she will be disgusted with her husband, because we should assume instead that she, like every woman, prefers to have a companion than to live alone, even if he is uncomely!


(a) TOSFOS (DH Asur) says that the rule of "Tav l'Meitav Tan Du..." applies only when a woman agrees to something on her own volition. We may then assume that she is willing to bear the consequences in return for companionship with a husband. A Ketanah, in contrast, has no Da'as, and her opinion was not consulted when her father arranged the marriage. In such a case, we cannot assume that the woman will be willing to suffer in order to live with that man.

(b) The RASHBA offers a different explanation. He explains that a Gedolah has her mind made up and is willing to put up with what she has. A Ketanah, however, can easily be persuaded by others, and we are worried that they will talk her into demanding a divorce from the man.


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