POINT BY POINT SUMMARY
Prepared by Rabbi P. Feldman
of Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
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Previous daf Sanhedrin 18
1) THE SIZE OF A CITY FIT FOR A SANHEDRIN (cont.)
(a) Answer #2 (R. Nechemyah): (The city must have) two
hundred and thirty people, corresponding to judges of 10
(i.e. each judge on the Sanhedrin could be a judge over
10 people of the city).
***** PEREK KOHEN GADOL *****
(b) (Beraisa - Rebbi): It must have 277 people (230 people
like R. Nechemyah, and another 47 in case a judge will be
indecisive and we will have to add judges until 70).
(c) Contradiction (Beraisa - Rebbi): It must have 278 people.
(d) Resolution: The former Beraisa is according to R. Yehudah
(who says that the Great Sanhedrin has 70 judges), the
latter is according to Chachamim (who say that it has
(e) (Beraisa): "...Sarei Alafim..." - there were 600 judges
of (appointed over) 1000, there were 6,000 judges of 100,
there were 12,000 judges of 50, there were 60,000 judges
of 10, making 78,600 judges in all. (Tosfos - each judge
himself was included in the number of people he is
appointed over; alternatively, the judges were above 60
and not included among the 600,000 Yisraelim).
2) LAWS OF THE KOHEN GADOL
(a) (Mishnah): A Kohen Gadol can judge, he can be judged; he
can testify, others can testify about him;
3) A KOHEN GADOL THAT KILLED
(b) His widow can do Chalitzah or Yibum, he can do Chalitzah
but not Yibum, for he is forbidden to marry a widow.
(c) R. Meir says, if one of his close relatives died (for
whom he mourns), he does not follow the coffin closely:
when the procession moves to a new area, he enters the
previous area it passed, until they reach the gate of
(d) R. Yehudah says, he does not leave the Mikdash - "U'Min
ha'Mikdash Lo Yetzei"
(e) When he consoles others, the Memuneh (this will be
explained) is on one side of him, everyone else is on the
(f) When others console him, they say 'we are an atonement
for you (to bear what should have come upon you)', he
says 'Hash-m should bless you'.
(g) When they give him the meal of Havra'ah (the first meal
after losing a relative), they sit on the ground, he sits
on a bench.
(h) A king does not judge, we do not judge him; he does not
testify, others do not testify about him;
(i) His widow does not do Chalitzah or Yibum, he does not do
Chalitzah or Yibum;
(j) R. Yehudah says, if he wants to do Chalitzah or Yibum, he
may, he is praised for this;
(k) Chachamim: We do not allow him.
(l) One may not marry a king's widow;
(m) R. Yehudah says, a king may marry a king's widow - David
married Sha'ul's widow, "Va'Etnah Lecha...Neshei
(n) (Gemara) Question: Obviously, a Kohen Gadol can judge!
(o) Answer #1: We need to teach that he can be judged.
(p) Question: This is also obvious - if he could not be
judged, he could not judge!
1. (Reish Lakish): "Hiskosheshu va'Koshu" - first fix
yourself, then correct others.
(q) Answer #2: Rather, since we need to teach that a king
does not judge and we do not judge him, we taught about a
Kohen Gadol for parallel structure.
(a) Answer #3: The Mishnah teaches as the following Beraisa.
1. (Beraisa): If a Kohen Gadol killed intentionally, he
is killed; if it was unintentional, he is exiled to
an Ir Miklat (city of refuge);
(b) Question: Obviously, if he killed intentionally he is
2. He transgresses an Ase and a Lav (this will be
explained), and he is like a commoner in every
(c) Answer: True - we needed to teach 'If he killed
unintentionally, he is exiled', this was taught with it.
(d) Question: Also this is obvious!
(e) Answer: Since it says "Va'Yashav Bah Ad Mos ha'Kohen
ha'Gadol", one might have thought that this only applies
to those who can return when the Kohen Gadol dies;
4) THE KOHEN GADOL DOES NOT TESTIFY
1. (Mishnah): If one killed a Kohen Gadol, or if a
Kohen Gadol killed, he never leaves the Ir Miklat;
(f) (Beraisa): He transgresses an Ase and a Lav.
2. One might have thought, he is not exiled at all -
the Beraisa teaches, this is not so.
3. Suggestion: Perhaps that truly is the law!
4. Rejection: "Lanus Shamah *Kol* Rotze'ach" - this
includes even a Kohen Gadol.
(g) Question: Should he transgress?!
(h) Answer: It means, if he transgressed an Ase or a Lav he
is like a commoner.
(i) Question: This is obvious!
(j) Answer: One might have thought that 71 judges are
required to judge him.
1. (Mishnah): Seventy-one judges are needed to judge a
Shevet, a false prophet, or a Kohen Gadol;
2. (Rav Ada bar Ahavah): "Kol ha'Davar ha'Gadol Yavi'u
Elecha - this refers to matters of a Gadol.
3. One might have thought, 71 are required for Kol
(all) his matters - the Beraisa teaches, this is not
4. Suggestion: Perhaps that truly is the law!
5. Rejection: It does not say 'Divrei Gadol', rather,
"Ha'Davar ha'Gadol", the biggest matter (a capital
(a) (Mishnah): A Kohen Gadol can testify, others can testify
(b) Question: A Kohen Gadol does not testify!
1. (Beraisa): "Vehisalamta" - sometimes you ignore the
lost object, sometimes you may not:
(c) Answer #1 (Rav Yosef): He testifies for a king.
2. A Kohen ignores a lost object in a cemetery, a
Chacham ignores it if it is below his dignity to
carry such an item, a worker ignores it if the wages
he will lose if he returns it are more than it is
3. Here also, it is below the dignity of a Kohen Gadol
to testify for others!
(d) Objection: (Mishnah): A king does not judge, we do not
judge him; he does not testify, others do not testify
(e) Answer #2 (R. Zeira): He testifies for a king's son.
(f) Objection: A king's son is a commoner (it is below the
Kohen Gadol's dignity to testify for him)!
(g) Answer #3: He may testify in front of a king (i.e. the
king is on the Sanhedrin).
(h) Question: But we do not put a king on the Sanhedrin!
(i) Answer: We put him there temporarily, while the Kohen
Gadol testifies (so it will not be a disgrace);
afterwards, the king leaves, the Sanhedrin judges.
(j) (Beraisa): We do not put a king on the Sanhedrin, a king
or a Kohen Gadol may not be on the Beis Din to Me'aber
1. We do not put a king on the Sanhedrin - "Lo Sa'aneh
Al Rav", you may not argue with the greatest of the
Beis Din (Ramah - the king would have to speak first
- perhaps he errs, and no one will dissent; Ran -
kings of Beis David, who would know not to speak
first, may be on the Sanhedrin).
(k) (Rav Papa): This teaches that the temperature follows the
months (of the Tekufos - it will begin to get cold after
Tekufas Tishrei, even if Beis Din was Me'aber too many
years and it is Elul).
2. A king may not be on the Beis Din to Me'aber the
year - since he pays his soldiers annually, he is
biased (he prefers to get more service for the
money, i.e. a leap year);
3. A Kohen Gadol is biased, he does not want a leap
year, in order that Yom Kipur will come early,
before the water is cold (he must immerse five times
on Yom Kipur).
(l) Question: But Chachamim heard three cattle shepherds: one
said 'It is Adar only if (the ground is warm, causing)
the early crop (wheat) and the late crop (barley) to
1. Another said 'It is Adar only if the morning is so
cold that an ox nearly dies, and in the afternoon it
must find shade under a date tree to escape the
(m) Answer (to both questions): Rather, Chachamim were
Me'aber based on calculations; they merely used the
shepherd's comments to support the Ibur.
2. The third said 'It is Adar only if (the cold of
winter has abated so much that) if the east wind
(which brings the cold) is blowing and you can blow
against it and overpower it (you can feel the heat
of your breath).'
3. Based on this, Chachamim were Me'aber the year
(because these signs had not yet come, they put
another month (Adar 2) before Nisan).
4. Counter-question: Chachamim would not rely on