POINT BY POINT SUMMARY
by Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
Ask A Question on the daf
MEGILAH 2-5 (Elul 27-Rosh Hashanah 5760) - have been dedicated by Dr.
Jack and Sarah Dimenstein of Zurich Switzerland. May they be blessed
with a year of health and prosperity, physical and spiritual!
1) MISHNAH: DAYS FOR READING THE MEGILAH
(a) The Megilah is never read before the 11th nor after the
15th (of Adar).
2) GEMARA: SOURCE OF THESE DAYS
(b) Villagers read on the last Monday or Thursday before or
on the 14th.
(c) (Unwalled) city dwellers read on the 14th, except when
the 14th falls on Shabbos, in which case they read on
(d) Residents of walled cities read on the 15th, except when
the 15th falls on Shabbos, in which case they read on
(a) Question: What is the source that villagers read early?
3) AUTHORSHIP OF THE MISHNAH
(b) Answer: They need not read early, they are just permitted
to read early!
(c) Clarification of Question: If Anshei Kneses ha'Gedolah
decreed that all must read on the 14th or 15th, how can
later Sages uproot this?
1. Mishnah) Only a greater body of sages can overturn a
(d) Answer: Anshei Kneses ha'Gedolah themselves enacted all
1. (R. Shemen Bar Aba): This is hinted at by the verse
"in their times".
i. Question: There is nothing extra in this verse
to teach this!
2. (R. Shmuel Bar Nachmani): The verse "As the days that
they rested" shows that we may read on the 11th and
ii. Answer: If so, the verse should have said
"Zeman". Instead, it says "B'zmaneihem" so we
should learn from it.
iii. Question: We need this to learn than one who
should read on the 14th may not read on the
15th, or vice-versa!
iv. Answer: If the verse came to teach only one
thing, it would have said "Zemanam";
"B'zmaneihem" teaches 2 things.
v. Question: Let us learn that even more days are
vi. Answer: The extra days are like the primary
days, i.e. there are 2.
vii. Question: We should say that 12 and 13 are the
viii.Answer: The main miracle - the war - was on the
13th, we know the 13th without the verse.
ix. Question: Why not say we include the 16th and
x. Answer: The verse says "do not pass over" (the
times for reading).
i. Questions and Answers 2.vii-x are repeated
ii. Question: Why didn't R. Shmuel learn from
iii. Answer: He says that the change of language
does not warrant learning as R. Shemen learns.
iv. Question: Why didn't R. Shemen Bar Aba learn
from "As the days"?
v. Answer: He says that those words teach that the
Mitzvah applies in future generations.
(a) Rabah Bar Bar Chanah): Our Mishnah is like R. Akiva;
Chachamim say that we may only read on the 14th and 15th.
(b) Question(Beraisa): R. Yehudah says the extra days are
allowed only when the years are proper and the Jews are
in Eretz Yisrael.
1. R. Akiva did not qualify when the extra days are
(c) Alternate version of Rabah Bar Bar Chanah: Our Mishnah is
like R. Akiva; Chachamim say that today, when people look
to the day of the reading, we only read in the primary
2. If so, R. Yehudah must hold like Chachamim - and he
permits extra days - refutation!
(d) Support (Beraisa ): R. Yehudah says that the extra days
are allowed only when the years are proper and the Jews
are in Eretz Yisrael, not today when people look to the
day of the reading.
(e) Question (Rav Ashi): R. Yehudah said otherwise in a
different Beraisa : Villagers may only read early in
places where they enter the cities on Mondays and
Thursdays - apparently, even today!
(f) Answer (Rav Ashi): The Tana of the previous Beraisa is R.
Yosi Bar Yehudah.
4) WALLED-CITY DWELLERS READ ON THE 15TH
(g) Question: A difficulty is no reason to say that a
different Tana taught the Beraisa !
i) Answer: Rav Ashi had heard that some
attribute the previous Beraisa to R. Yosi
(a) Question: What is the source of this law?
5) AUTHORSHIP OF THE MISHNAH
(b) Answer: (Rava) The verse says that "open city dwellers"
celebrate the 14th - we deduce, walled-city dwellers
celebrate the 15th.
(c) Question: Why not say that walled cities do not celebrate
(d) Answer: Are they not Jewish (of course, all Jews should
1. Answer #2 (verse): "from Hodu until Kush" (i.e. the
(e) Question: Say that walled cities must celebrate both!
1. strengthening of question - (verse):"the day of the
14th and the day of the 15th"!
(f) Answer: The word "V'es" teaches that these read on the
14th, and these on the 15th.
(g) Question: Let us say that walled cities may read on
(h) Answer (verse): "B'zmaneihem" - the time of these is not
the time of these.
(i) Question: Let us say that walled cities read on the 13th!
(j) Answer: We learn from Shushan (which the Megilah says
celebrates the 15th).
(k) Question: How do we know that this is the proper day to
read the Megilah?
1. The verses only teach on which day to make a festive
meal and Yom Tov!
(l) Answer (verse): "the days are remembered and made", we
equate remembering (reading) with making a festive meal
and Yom Tov.
(a) Our Mishnah is unlike the Tana of this Beraisa : R.
Yehoshua Ben Karchah says that cities surrounded by a
wall from the time of Achashverosh read on the 15th.
(b) Question: What is his reason?
(c) Answer: We learn from Shushan, which was surrounded by a
wall from the time of Achashverosh.
(d) Question: What is the reason of the Tana of our Mishnah?
(e) Answer: Gezerah Shaveh (Prazi-Prazi), we learn from the
cities of Sichon and Og.
1. R. Yehoshua Ben Karchah did not learn as our Tana,
since he had no tradition for the Gezerah Shaveh.
(f) (Verse) Every county and county, every city and city.
2. Question: Why didn't our Tana learn as R. Yehoshua Ben
3. Answer: As we said, he learns a Gezerah Shaveh!
4. (Clarification of question): According to our Tana,
Shushan should celebrate the 14th!
5. Answer: Shushan is special, since the miracle was in
1. Our Tana learns that "county and county" distinguishes
between walled cities from the time of Yehoshua Bin
Nun and those surrounded by a wall afterwards.
(g) R. Yirmiyah): Prophets taught the 5 final-letters of the
2. "city and city" distinguishes between Shushan and all
other cities not surrounded by a wall from the time
of Yehoshua Bin Nun.
3. R. Yehoshua Ben Karchah can similarly learn that
"county and county" distinguishes between walled
cities from the time of Achashverosh and those
surrounded by a wall afterwards.
4. Question: What can he learn from "city and city"?
i. Counter-Question: Our Tana also does not need
to learn from this, since he has a Gezerah
5. Answer: Both Tanaim must learn that it comes to teach
the following law:
6. (R. Yehoshua Ben Levi): Everything that is close to
and can see a walled city has the law of the walled
i. Question: What is considered close?
ii. Answer: (R. Yirmiyah) As from Chamsan to
Teveryah, 1 Mil.
iii. Question: Say simply, 1 Mil!
iv. Answer: He wanted to teach us the size of a
1. Question (verse): "These are the mitzvos" - prophets
cannot make any changes!
2. Another Question: (Rav Chisdah) The final "Mem" and
"Samech" stood miraculously on the Tablets (so we
see, the final letters were given to Moshe)!