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Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld

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Sanhedrin 21

SANHEDRIN 21-22 - Mrs. Estanne Abraham-Fawer has dedicated two more days of study material to honor her father, Reb Mordechai ben Eliezer Zvi (Weiner) of blessed memory (Yahrzeit: 18 Teves). May the merit of supporting and advancing the study of the Talmud be l'Iluy Nishmaso.


(a) (Mishnah): "V'Lo Yarbeh Lo Nashim" - a king may not marry more than 18 wives.
(b) R. Yehudah says, he may marry more, on condition that they do not divert his heart (from fearing Hash-m).
(c) R. Shimon says, he may not marry even one that will divert his heart;
(d) Question: If so, why does the Torah forbid taking *too many*?
(e) Answer: It is forbidden to take many even if they inspire him to fear Hash-m, like Avigayil.
(f) (Gemara) Question: In our Mishnah, R. Yehudah derives a Halachah from (what he understands to be) the reason for a Mitzvah, and R. Shimon does not - elsewhere, they hold vice-versa!
1. (Beraisa - R. Yehudah): One may not take a security from a widow, whether she is rich or poor - "V'Lo Sachabol Beged Almanah";
2. R. Shimon says, one may take from a rich widow, but not from a poor widow, you must return it, you ruin her reputation.
3. Question: What does this mean?
4. Answer: *If* you would take from a poor widow, since you must return it every day, you would ruin her reputation (because people will see you by her every day).
5. Summation of question: R. Shimon derives a Halachah from the reason for a Mitzvah , R. Yehudah does not!
(g) Answer: Here (marrying too many wives) is different, because the Torah gave the reason - "V'Lo Yarbeh Lo Nashim *in order that* v'Lo Yasur Levavo" (therefore, R. Yehudah derives a Halachah from the reason);
1. R. Shimon: Had the Torah only said "V'Lo Yarbeh Lo Nashim", we would have known that this in order that they will not divert his heart;
2. The Torah explicitly said "V'Lo Yasur Levavo" to teach that he may not marry even one that will divert his heart.
3. Question: If so, why must the Torah forbid taking too many?
4. Answer: It forbids taking many, even like Avigayil.
(h) Question: What is the source that only 18 are allowed?
(i) Answer: David had (children from) six wives "Amnon la'Achino'am...veha'Shishi Yisre'am l'Eglah", and Shmuel told him "V'Osifah Lecha ka'Henah vecha'Henah" - another six and another six.
(j) Objection (Ravina): Wsst "Ka'Henah" teaches (six more, in all) 12, "vecha'Henah" teaches (another 12, in all) 24!
(k) Support (Beraisa): "V'Lo Yarbeh Lo Nashim" - a king may not marry more than 24 wives.
(l) According to the opinion that expounds 'Vov' ("*ve*cha'Henah"), he should be allowed 48!
(m) Support (Beraisa): "V'Lo Yarbeh Lo Nashim" - a king may not marry more than 48 wives.
(n) Question: What is the reason for the Tana of our Mishnah?
(o) Answer (Rav Kahana): He equates the latter 'Ka'Henah' to the former 'Ka'Henah' - just as the former teaches six more, also the latter.
(a) Question: David had a seventh wife, Michal, when Shmuel told him "Ka'Henah vecha'Henah"!
(b) Answer (Rav): Eglah is Michal; she is called Eglah because she was as dear to him as a calf (as Shimon said) - "Lulei Charashtem b'Eglasi".
(c) Question: But Michal did not have children - "Ul'Michal Bas Sha'ul Lo Hayah Lah Yeled Ad Yom Mosah"!
(d) Answer (Rav Chisda): She did not have a child *Ad* (before) the day she died, she bore a child the day she died.
(e) Objection: The verse listed David's children in Chevron - the episode with Michal was (later, in) Yerushalayim!
1. "U'Michal...va'Tere Es ha'Melech David Mefazez u'Mcharcher Lifne Hash-m va'Tivez Lo b'Libah"'
2. (Rav Yehudah): She was punished for this (by not having children).
(f) Correction: Rather, she did not have more children after this episode, she had children from before.
(g) Question: "Va'Yikach David Od Pilagshim v'Nashim mi'Yrushalayim"!
(h) Answer: He took more, until he had 18,
(i) Question: What is the difference between Pilagshim and Nashim (wives)?
(j) Answer (Rav Yehudah): Wives have a Kesuvah and Kidushin, Pilagshim do not have a Kesuvah nor (our text, Rambam; Rashi (on Chumash), Ra'avad - but have) Kidushin.
(k) (Rav Yehudah): David had 400 children from Yafos To'ar (attractive women taken in war);
1. They grew Bluris (long hair in back), they sat in gold wagons at the head of the troops - they were the strong-arms of Beis David (to scare the enemy).
(a) (Rav Yehudah): Tamar was the daughter of a Yafes To'ar (she was conceived before her mother converted) - "Daber Na El ha'Melech Lo Yimna'eni Mimeka";
1. Had she been David's daughter from a Yisraelis, she would have been Amnon's sister!
(b) (Rav Yehudah): "Ul'Amnon Re'a...Chacham" - he was a Chacham for evil.
(c) (Rav Yehudah): "Va'Tichak Es ha'Meshares va'Titzok Lefanav" - she made fried food for him.
(d) Question: "Va'Yisna'eha" - (afterwards) why did he hate her?
(e) Answer (R. Yitzchak): His Ever got caught on a hair, it castrated him.
(f) Question: She did not intend for this!
(g) Correction: She intentionally tied a hair to castrate him.
(h) Question: But Rava taught, "Va'Yetzei Lach Shem ba'Goyim b'Yafyech" - Benos Yisrael do not have hair in the underarms or near their Ervah (Maharsha - they shave it; Maharshal - Hash-m causes that it does not grow)!
(i) Answer: Tamar was the daughter of a Yafes To'ar.
(j) (Beraisa - R. Yehoshua ben Korchah): "Va'Tichak Tamar Efer Al Roshah..." - this taught a great lesson to Benos Yisrael:
1. If such a great disgrace can occur even to the king's daughter, all the more so to regular women; if it can occur even to modest women, all the more so to immodest women!

2. (Rav Yehudah): At that time, they decreed against seclusion (with a married woman) and relations with a single girl.
3. Question: Seclusion is forbidden mid'Oraisa!
i. Question (R. Yochanan): "Ki Yesisecha Achicha Ven Imecha" - do maternal brothers entice, but not paternal brothers?!
ii. Answer (R. Yochanan): Rather, this hints that a man may be secluded with his mother, not with other Arayos.
4. Correction: Rather, they decreed against seclusion with a single girl.
(k) "Va'Adoniyah...Misnasei Leimor Ani Emloch" - he tried on the crown which only fits those fitting to be kings of Beis David, but it did not fit him.
(l) Question: "Va'Ya'as...va'Chamishim Ish Ratzim Lefanav" - what was special about them?
(m) Answer (Beraisa): He removed their spleens and the skin of the bottom of their feet (so they could run faster, thorns would not hurt them).
(a) (Mishnah): "Lo Yarbeh Lo Susim" - only what he needs for his chariots (the army).
(b) "V'Chesef v'Zahav Lo Yarbeh Lo Me'od" - only what he needs to pay his army.
(c) He writes a Sefer Torah for himself, he takes it to war, when he returns, when he judges - "V'Haysah Imo v'Kara Bo Kol Yemei Chayav".
(d) (Gemara - Beraisa) Suggestion: "Lo Yarbeh Lo Susim" - perhaps he may not even have for his chariots or cavalry!
(e) Rejection: "Lo Yarbeh *Lo*" - it is forbidden only if he increases to aggrandize himself.
(f) Question: Which horses are forbidden?
(g) Answer: Idle horses (that just run in front of him).
(h) Question: What is the source that even one idle horse is forbidden?
(i) Answer: "Lema'an Harbos Sus".
(j) Question: If so, why does it say "Susim" (plural)?
(k) Answer: This teaches that he transgresses a Lav for every idle horse.
1. Question: Had it not said "*Lo*", we would have said that he may not even have for his army (but a king needs these)!
2. Answer: We would have taught that he may only have a bare minimum for his army - "*Lo*" permits increasing these.
(l) (Mishnah): "V'Chesef v'Zahav Lo Yarbeh Lo Me'od" - only what he needs to pay his army.
(m) (Beraisa) Suggestion: "V'Chesef v'Zahav Lo Yarbeh Lo" - one might have thought, even what he needs to pay his army;
(n) Rejection: "Lo Yarbeh *Lo*" - he does not increase for himself, he may increase in order to pay his army.
1. Question: Had it not said "*Lo*", we would have said that he may not even have for his army (but he needs an army)!
2. Answer: We would have taught that he may only have the minimum needed to pay an army - "*Lo*" permits extra (in case he will need to hire more soldiers).
(o) Question: What will we expound from "Lo Yarbeh *Lo* Nashim"?
(p) Answer: This excludes commoners (they may marry many women).
(a) Contradiction (Rav Yehudah): It says "Li'Shlomo Arba'im Elef Urvos Susim"; it also says " Arba'as Alafim Uryos Susim"!
(b) Answer: Either he had 40,000 stable houses, each with 4,000 horse pens, or 4,000 stable houses, each with 40,000 pens.
(c) Contradiction (R. Yitzchak): It says "Ein Kesef Nechshav bi'Ymei Shlomo li'M'umah" - it also says "Ha'Kesef bi'Yrushalayim ka'Avanim" (it had some importance)!
(d) Answer: Before he married Bas Par'o (he engaged only in Chachmah), it had no importance; after he married her, it was like stones.
(e) (R. Yitzchak): When Shlomo married Bas Par'o, Gavri'el inserted a reed in the sea; dirt got deposited, Romi was later built there.
(f) Question (R. Yitzchak): Why weren't the reasons for Mitzvos revealed?
(g) Answer (R. Yitzchak): The reasons for two Mitzvos were revealed, and the greatest Chacham stumbled in them.
1. It says "Lo Yarbeh Lo Nashim" - Shlomo thought, I will take many, they will not veer my heart;
i. Ultimately, they did - "Hitu Es Levavo".
2. It says "Lo Yarbeh Lo Susim" - Shlomo thought, I will acquire many, we will not return to Mitzrayim;
i. Ultimately, they did - "Va'Tetzei Merkavah mi'Mitzrayim".
(a) (Mishnah): He writes a Sefer Torah for himself.
(b) (Beraisa): It is not enough that he inherited one.
(c) (Rabah): Even if a person inherited a Sefer Torah, it is a Mitzvah to write one himself - "Kisvu Lachem Es ha'Shirah ha'Zos".
(d) Question (Abaye - Beraisa): It is not enough that he inherited one.
1. Inference: This only applies to a king!
(e) Answer: No, the only difference about a king is that he must write a second Sefer Torah.
(f) (Beraisa): "V'Chasav Lo Es Mishnah ha'Torah ha'Zos" - he writes two Sifrei Torah for himself; one he takes with him, the other he stores away.
1. The one he takes with him he hangs on his arm - "Shivisi Hash-m l'Negdi Tamid".
(g) He does not take it into a bathhouse or Beis ha'Kisei - "V'Haysah Imo v'Kara Bo", he only takes it where he may read it.
(a) (Mar Zutra): Originally, the Torah was given to Yisrael in Lashon ha'Kodesh, in Ivri writing (forms of the letters);
1. In the days of Ezra, it was given in Arame'ic, in Ashuris writing.
2. Yisrael chose Lashon ha'Kodesh and Ashuris; they left Arame'ic and Ivri writing for commoners.
3. Question: Who are the commoners?
4. Answer (Rav Chisda): Kusim.
5. Question: What is Ivri writing?
6. Answer (Rav Chisda): Writing in big letters (Rashi; R. Tam - a writing particular to a place called Libona'ah; Maharsha - the writing we were used to from Lavan's house).
(b) (Beraisa - R. Yosi): Ezra was fitting that the Torah be given through him, just Moshe preceded him.
1. It says "U'Moshe Alah El ha'Elokim" - likewise, it says "Hu Ezra Alah mi'Bavel" - just as the Aliyah of Moshe was for Torah, also that of Ezra.
2. It says regarding Moshe "V'Osi Tzivah Hash-m...Lelamed Eschem Chukim u'Mishpatim" - likewise, it says "Ezra...u'Lelamed b'Yisrael Chok u'Mishpat".
3. Even though the Torah was not given through Ezra, the writing changed through him - "U'Chsav ha'Nishtevan";
4. It also says "Lo cha'Halin Kisva";
5. It also says "V'Kasav Es *Mishnah* ha'Torah ha'Zos" - a writing that will Mishtaneh (change).
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