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Pesachim 94


QUESTION: The Gemara quotes a Beraisa in which Rebbi Yehudah states that an average person can walk 10 Parsa'os (40 Mil) in one day. He adds that in the time between Amud ha'Shachar (dawn) and Hanetz ha'Chamah (sunrise), and in the time between Sheki'ah (sunset) and Tzeis ha'Kochavim (nightfall) a person can walk 4 Mil.

This implies that according to Rebbi Yehudah, Bein ha'Shemashos (the period of time between sunset and nightfall) is the time that it takes to walk 4 Mil. However, in Shabbos (34b-35a), Rebbi Yehudah himself holds that Bein ha'Shemashos is the time that it takes to walk *3/4* of a Mil (according to Rabah's interpretation of Rebbi Yehudah's opinion there, and 2/3 of a Mil according to Rav Yosef's interpretation)!

How could Rebbi Yehudah say that the duration of Bein ha'Shemashos is *4* Mil, when in Shabbos he says that it is only 2/3 or 3/4 of a Mil? How do we reconcile these two statements of Rebbi Yehudah? (TOSFOS, DH Rebbi Yehudah)


(a) TOSFOS (DH Rebbi Yehudah, and in Shabbos 35a, DH Trei) explains, in the name of RABEINU TAM, that there is a difference between the Gemara here and the Gemara in Shabbos. The Gemara here says "*mi'Sheki'as* ha'Chamah," (and not *mi'Shetishka* ha'Chamah, as it says in the Gemara in Shabbos), and it is referring to the moment that the sun disappears *from our eyes*. That point marks the *beginning* of sunset. At that moment, though, it is still journeying through the firmament (i.e. away from us). When the sun passes through the entire thickness of the firmament, it is considered to be the "end of the sunset." This is referred to as "*mi'Shetishka* ha'Chamah." Shortly afterwards (3/4 Mil), its remaining light disappears altogether and three stars can be seen.

In summary, the order of events is: (1) the sun disappears from our view, after which time the sun *begins* to set (2) a period of 3 1/4 Mil (or 3 1/3 according to Rav Yosef) passes, after which the sun has finished setting. This point marks the start of the Beis ha'Shemashos under discussion in Shabbos. (3) Then a period of 3/4 Mil (or 2/3 according to Rav Yosef) passes, after which time the light of the sun has completely disappeared and the stars come out. According to this, Halachic nightfall does not occur until long after sunset -- the time it takes to walk 4 Mil. This is the view of RABEINU TAM.

(b) The VILNA GA'ON (SHENOS ELIYAHU, beginning of Maseches Berachos, and in BI'UR HA'GRA OC 235 and 261) explains that both here and in Shabbos, the times mentioned (4 Mil and 3/4 Mil) start from the time that the sun completely disappears from our view. However, the Gemara here is talking about a different *Tzeis ha'Kochavim* than the Gemara in Shabbos (and not a different Sheki'as ha'Chamah, as Rabeinu Tam suggests). Here in Pesachim, "Tzeis ha'Kochavim" refers to the time at which every last ray of light disappears from the sky (which is four Mil after sunset), and *all* of the stars can be seen. In Shabbos, "Tzeis ha'Kochavim" refers to the time at which *three medium-size stars* can be seen, which is the Halachic definition of nightfall. (The Gemara here, by contrast, is an Agaddic discussion and is not referring to the Halachic definition of Tzeis ha'Kochavim.)

According to the VILNA GA'ON, then, nightfall occurs shortly after sunset -- the time that it takes to walk 3/4 of a Mil.

(c) The RE'EM (SEFER YER'EI'IM) says that the Gemara here is talking about both a different Sheki'ah and a different Tzeis ha'Kochavim than the Gemara in Shabbos. The Gemara here is talking about the period of time from when the sun sets until the last ray of sunlight disappears. The Gemara in Shabbos, when it discusses "Bein ha'Shemashos," is talking about the time *before* the sun has set, the last moment that it is still visible. Bein ha'Shemashos is a period of 3/4 of a Mil beginning from *before* the sun has completely set, i.e. while the sun is still visible. Nightfall is when the sun can no longer be seen, which comes at the end of Bein ha'Shemashos. Our Gemara is Agaddic and is not discussing Halachic definitions of sunset and nightfall.

OPINIONS: The Gemara, in many places, expresses a value of time in terms of how long it takes the average person to walk one Mil. For example, in Pesachim (46a) the Gemara says that dough becomes Chametz if left without being baked or handled for the amount of time that it takes to walk one Mil. The RAMBAM (Hilchos Ma'achalos Asuros 6:10; SHULCHAN ARUCH YD 69:6) says that in order to remove the blood from meat it must be salted for the amount of time that it takes to walk one Mil. How long is this time period?

Our Sugya is the basis for ascertaining the length that it takes to walk one Mil. Ula (93b) states that in one day (the day of the equinox, when daytime and nighttime are of equal duration), a person can walk 10 Parsa'os, or 40 Mil. However, 5 of these Mil are used for the period between Amud ha'Shachar and Hanetz ha'Chamah (that is, a person can walk 5 Mil in the time between dawn and sunrise), and 5 more are used for the period between Sheki'as ha'Chamah and Tzeis ha'Kochavim. As a result, a person can walk 30 Mil from Hanetz (sunrise) until Sheki'ah (sunset). If that period is 12 hours long (720 minutes), then the time that it takes to walk 1 Mil is *24 minutes* (720 / 30 = 24).

However, the Gemara challenges Ula's opinion from Rebbi Yehudah in a Beraisa. Rebbi Yehudah says, like Ula, that a person can walk 40 Mil in one day. However, as Rashi explains, according to Rebbi Yehudah, a person can walk only 4 Mil, and not 5, between Amud ha'Shachar and Hanetz and between Sheki'ah and Tzeis ha'Kochavim. If so, that leaves 32 Mil which a person can walk during the day, between sunrise and sunset. Accordingly, the time that it takes to walk 1 Mil is *22 1/2 minutes* (720 / 32 = 22.5).

However, there is a different understanding of Rebbi Yehudah's statement in the Yerushalmi (Berachos 1:1, as cited by the SHENOS ELIYAHU Berachos 1:1 and BI'UR HA'GRA OC 459). When Rebbi Yehudah says that a person can walk 40 Mil in one day, it means 40 Mil from sunrise to sunset. The distance one can walk from dawn to sunrise (and from sunset to nightfall) is an *additional* 4 Mil, and is not part of the total 40 Mil. Although this creates a much greater discrepancy between the distance a person walks per day according to Ula and the distance he walks according to Rebbi Yehudah, on the other hand, it is much more consistent with Rebbi Yehudah's contention that the time between Alos and Hanetz is "1/10 of the day" (i.e. of the 12 hours *between Hanetz and Sheki'ah*). This, then, may be what our Gemara means by saying "[Ula] made a mistake in counting the time from Hanetz to Sheki'ah," when he heard Rebbi Yehudah's statement. That is, Ula thought that the 10 Mils *included* that period, while it actually was *besides* that period (Vilna Gaon, ibid.). Consequently, according to the Yerushalmi, the time it takes to walk one Mil is *18 minutes* (720 / 40 = 18).

What is the Halachah?

(a) The BEIS YOSEF (OC 459, and in SHULCHAN ARUCH 459:2) cites the opinion of the TERUMAS HA'DESHEN who says that the time it takes to walk one Mil is 18 minutes. The Terumas ha'Deshen bases this opinion on our Gemara. Although he reaches this figure through a different calculation (see Bi'ur ha'Gra, ibid.), this figure is consistent with the understanding of the Yerushalmi in Rebbi Yehudah. This is also the ruling of the Rambam at the beginning of his Perush ha'Mishnayos in Berachos.

(b) The RAMBAM (Perush ha'Mishnayos, Pesachim 3:2) says that the time it takes to walk one Mil is *24 minutes*. The Rambam seems to be ruling like Ula, as is clear from his ruling in Hilchos Korban Pesach (5:8) where he states that "Derech Rechokah" is defined as 15 Mil outside of Yerushalayim, which is the opinion of Ula. Even though Ula's opinion was refuted by the Gemara, apparently the Rambam had a different text in his Gemara (Bi'ur ha'Gra OC 459). TOSFOS (Pesachim 11b, Dh Echad Omer) and the ROSH (Ta'anis 1:12) also cite the opinion of Ula.

(c) The BI'UR HA'GRA (OC 459) points out that according to way Rashi and Tosfos seem to understand the conclusion of our Gemara (i.e. not like the Yerushalmi), the time that it takes to walk one Mil should be 22 1/2 minutes.

HALACHAH: The BI'UR HALACHAH (OC 459:2) writes that when it comes to making Matzah, we are stringent and consider dough that sat still for 18 minutes to be considered Chametz. On the other hand, when it comes to salting meat, we are stringent and consider a Mil to be 24 minutes, and thus require that meat be salted for at least 24 minutes (that is b'Di'eved; l'Chatchilah, meat should be salted for at least an hour).


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