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by Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld

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Megilah 3

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!


(a) Answer: All the letters were already known, just we did not know which are the final letters and which come in the beginning or middle of words.
(b) Question: Still, this is something new, a prophet may not teach it!
(c) Answer: The prophets merely reminded us of something which had been known and was forgotten.
(a) (R. Yirmiyah): Unkelus said the translation of the Torah, which he received from R. Eliezer and R. Yehoshua.
(b) Yonasan Ben Uziel said the translation of the prophetic writings, which he received from Chagai, Zekaryah and Malachi.
1. Eretz Yisrael shook 400 Parsa, and a voice from Heaven protested that secrets are being revealed.
2. Yonasan replied that his only intention was to prevent disputes.
(c) Yonasan wanted to reveal the translation of Kesuvim
1. A Heavenly voice told him that he had already revealed enough.
i. Question: Why was he allowed to reveal the translation of the prophets, but not of Kesuvim?
ii. Answer: The translation of the writings contains the time of the coming of Meshiach
(d) Question: Did Unkelus really say the translation of Torah?
1. (Rav Ika Bar Avin): We learn from the verse "Vayikra'u B'Sefer ..." that the translation, breaks between verses, and musical notes for reading the Torah were known in the days of Ezra (long before Unkelus)!
(e) Answer: The translation was forgotten, and Unkelus re-established it.
(f) Question: Why did Eretz Yisrael shake when the translation of the prophets was revealed, but not when the translation of Torah was revealed?
(g) Answer: The Torah is generally revealed, but many things in the prophets are hidden, and are only known through the translation.
1. Example: The verse, "like the eulogy of Hadadrimon in the valley of Megidon".
2. (Rav Yosef): The translation reveals, these are the eulogies of Achav (who was killed by Hadadrimon) and Yoshiyahu (who was killed in the valley of Megidon).
(h) Verse: "I, Daniel, saw the vision; the people with me did not, but they were frightened.
1. Question: Who were the people with Daniel?
2. Answer (R. Yirmiyah): Chagai, Zekaryah and Malaki.
i. In one respect, they are better than him - they are prophets, and Daniel is not.
ii. In one respect, he is better than them - he saw, and they did not.
iii. Question: If they did not see, why were they frightened?
iv. Answer: Their Mazel saw.
v. (Rav Yosef): We learn from here, if one is frightened and does not know why, it is because his Mazel saw something.
vi. Question: What should he do?
vii. Answer: Read Shma Yisrael; if the area is unclean, move to a clean area so he may read; if not, recite a certain charm.
(a) Question: If we learn from "city and city, county and county", we should also learn from "family and family"!
(b) Answer (R. Yosi Bar Chanina): This teaches that Kohanim and Leviyim abandon Temple Service to hear the Megilah.
1. Support (Rav Yehudah and Beraisa ): Kohanim, Leviyim and Yisraelim abandon their service and watches in the Temple to hear the Megilah.
2. All the more so, we should abandon learning Torah to hear the Megilah; this was the practice in Rebbi's house.
3. Question: How can we say "all the more so" - is Temple Service greater than learning Torah?
i. (verse) Yehoshua saw a man (really an angel) and bowed to him.
ii. Question: How could he do so?
iii. (R. Yehoshua Ben Levi)One may not greet a friend at night, perhaps it is a Shaid!
iv. Answer: The man had said "I am an officer in the legion of Hashem", so he knew it was not a Shaid.
v. Question: Perhaps he lied!
vi. We have a tradition, Shaidim do not say Hashem's name in vain.
4. The angel rebuked Yehoshua for not having offered the afternoon offering, and for not learning enough this night.
i. Question: Which was the main reason he came?
ii. Answer: For the current problem (not learning).
iii. R. Yochanan (from a verse): Yehoshua spent the (rest of the) night learning deeply.

5. Question (R. Shmuel Bar Uniya): The fact that the angel rebuked him for not learning shows that Torah is greater than Temple Service!
6. Answer: Learning of the congregation is greater, but not an individual's learning.
7.Question: Is the learning of an individual really less than Temple Service?
i. (Mishnah): Women eulogize but do not beat themselves over a death on a festival; R. Yishmael says that those close to the coffin are permitted;
ii. On Rosh Chodesh, Chanukah and Purim, both are permitted.
iii. (Rabah Bar Huna): These restrictions do not apply to the death of a Sage!
iv. Answer: The honor of an individual that learns Torah is great, but the learning is not so great.
(c) (Rava): Reading the Megilah comes before Temple Service (as above,(b));
(d) Reading the Megilah comes before learning Torah (as above, (b)2.);
(e) A Mes Mitzvah (burying an unattended corpse) takes precedence over learning Torah, as seen by the coming Beraisa :
1. We abandon learning Torah for burial and to bring a bride to the Chupa.
(f) A Mes Mitzvah takes precedence over Temple Service, as seen by the coming Beraisa :
1. One who is going to offer his Korban Pesach or circumcise his son, and hears that his sister died, continues the Mitzvah he was engaged in.
2. This only applies (verse) "for his sister"; but not for a Mes Mitzvah.
(g) Question (Rava): Which comes first: Reading the Megilah, or a Mes Mitzvah?
1. Perhaps reading the Megilah comes first, because it publicizes the miracle.
2. Perhaps the Mes Mitzvah comes first, because it gives honor to Hashem's creations.
3. Answer: The Mes Mitzvah is preferable, as we see from the following teaching.
4. Honoring people is such a great Mitzvah that it overrides a negative Mitzvah of the Torah.
(a) R. Yehoshua Ben Levi: A walled city and all close to it and all seen with it are treated as a walled city.
(b) (Beraisa ): Either close or visible is enough.
1. Visible but not close is understood - a suburb on top of a mountain.
2. Question: What is the case of close but not seen?
3. Answer: In a valley.
(b) R. Yehoshua Ben Levi: A walled city which was inhabited and then enclosed by a wall is considered as a village.
1. Source: the verse "A man that will sell a house of an inhabited walled city".
(c) R. Yehoshua Ben Levi: A walled city without 10 Batlanim (people that spend all day in shul) is considered as a village.
1. Question: We already know this from a Mishnah:
i. A large city is one with 10 Batlanim!
2. Answer: We need to hear the law by a walled city, even though people from outside the city come and are found in shul, we require people of the city itself.
(d) R. Yehoshua Ben Levi: A walled city which became desolate and was later inhabited has the law of a walled city.
1. Question: What does he mean, "became desolate"?
i. Suggestion: If he means that its walls fell - if they were not rebuilt, it would not have the law of a walled city?
ii. Question(Beraisa ) R. Eliezer Bar Yosi (verse): "That there is *Lo* a wall" - the word *Lo* (to it) has the letter Aleph appended, so we may read it as "it does not (now) have a wall" (but used to have one)!
2. Answer: He means, it became desolate of 10 Batlanim.
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