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Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld

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Sanhedrin 33


(a) (Mishnah): A monetary verdict can be overturned, whether Zechus or Chiyuv:
(b) Contradiction (Mishnah): A judge judged and acquitted the guilty or obligated the innocent, he declared Tamei what is Tahor or declared Tahor what is Tamei, what he did stands, he must pay for the loss he caused.
(c) Answer #1 (Rav Yosef): Our Mishnah refers to a Mumcheh (if he retracts, we are confident that now he is correct), that Mishnah discusses a judge that is not Mumcheh.
1. Question: Is it really true that we overturn the verdict of a Mumcheh?!
i. (Mishnah): A Mumcheh l'Rabim is exempt (if he erred). (If he can overturn his verdict, there is nothing to pay for!)
2. Answer #1 (Rav Nachman): A bigger Chacham can overturn the verdict, if there is no bigger Chacham, the verdict stands.
3. Answer #2 (Rav Sheshes): If he was To'eh bi'Dvar Mishnah (this will be explained), we overturn the verdict; if he was To'eh b'Shikul ha'Da'as (ruled unlike the primary opinion), the verdict stands.
4. Question (Ravina): If he erred in (a Tosefta of) R. Chiya and R. Oshaya, is this considered To'eh bi'Dvar Mishnah?
5. Answer (Rav Ashi): Yes.
6. Question (Ravina): What if he erred in a teaching of Rav and Shmuel?
7. Answer (Rav Ashi): This is also To'eh bi'Dvar Mishnah.
8. Question (Ravina): What if he erred in one of our teachings?
9. Answer (Rav Ashi): We are also Amora'im (this is also To'eh bi'Dvar Mishnah)!
10. Question: What is To'eh b'Shikul ha'Da'as?
11. Answer (Rav Papa): If two Tana'im or Amora'im argue with each other, and the Halachah was not fixed like either one, but the discussion favors one of the opinions (and the judge ruled like the other opinion).
12. Question (against Rav Sheshes - Rav Hamnuna - Mishnah): A case occurred, the womb of a cow was removed, R. Tarfon ruled that it is Treifah, they fed it to dogs;
i. Chachamim in Yavneh said that it is Kosher, because they cut the wombs of all cows and pigs that leave Miztrayim (so they will not reproduce, but they live).
ii. R. Tarfon: I will lose my donkey on account of my mistake!
iii. R. Akiva: You are Mumcheh l'Rabim, you are exempt.
iv. Summation of question: If we overturn a Ta'us bi'Dvar Mishnah, that is enough to exempt R. Tarfon!
13. Answer: Indeed, R. Akiva gave a second reason to exempt him:
i. Since you were To'eh bi'Dvar Mishnah, we overturn the verdict, you are exempt;
ii. Even if you were To'eh b'Shikul ha'Da'as, since you are a Mumcheh l'Rabim, you would be exempt.
14. Question (Rav Nachman bar Yitzchak): How could Rav Hamnuna ask from that case - R. Tarfon fed it to dogs, it will not help to overturn the verdict!
15. Answer (Rava): If you will say that To'eh bi'Dvar Mishnah the verdict stands, we understand why R. Tarfon thought he would be liable;
i. But if To'eh bi'Dvar Mishnah can be overturned, why did he expect to be liable? Since if the cow was around his ruling has no effect, even if it is not around, his ruling should have no effect!
(d) Answer #2 (Rav Chisda): If the judge himself transferred the money, the verdict stands; if he did not, we overturn the verdict.
(e) Question: That explains (when the Mishnah says) 'if he obligated the innocent';
1. But regarding 'he acquitted the guilty' he said 'you are exempt' - he did not transfer money!
(f) Answer #1: Saying 'you are exempt' is like bodily transferring the money.
1. Question: Our Mishnah says that a monetary verdict can be overturned, whether Zechus or Chiyuv:
i. We understand Chiyuv - originally, he said 'you are Chayav' and did not transfer the money himself, and later he retracted;
ii. But if saying 'you are exempt' is like bodily transferring the money, this can never be retracted!
2. Answer: Our Mishnah means, a monetary verdict of Chiyuv can be overturned, even though this was Zechus for the other party (but a verdict of 'exempt' cannot be overturned).
i. Inference: The Mishnah says, in capital cases we overturn a verdict of Chiyuv, not of Zechus - this must mean, we can change to say Zechus only if it does not harm anyone else (e.g. Ploni was sentenced for desecrating Shabbos).

ii. Question: Who could be harmed if Ploni is exempted?
iii. Answer: (In a murder case,) the Go'el ha'Dam (the relative of the victim) is harmed (he hoped to avenge the murder).
3. Objection #1: Will we kill Ploni on account of (not wanting to retract, for this would upset) the Go'el ha'Dam?!
4. Objection #2: The Mishnah says that a monetary verdict can be overturned, *whether* Zechus *or* Chiyuv!
5. These questions are left difficult.
(g) Answer #2 (to Question (f) - Ravina): Almoni had a security of Ploni; when the judge exempted Ploni, he took the security and gave it to Ploni.
(h) 'He declared Tamei what is Tahor' can also be through the judge's action - he touched a Sheretz to it to 'prove' that it is Tamei;
1. Regarding 'he declared Tahor what is Tamei', the judge mixed it with other Taharos of Ploni to 'prove' that it is Tahor.
(a) (Mishnah): In capital cases (we can overturn a verdict of Chiyuv, not of Zechus).
(b) (Beraisa) Question: What is the source that if Beis Din sentenced Ploni to die, and someone had a reason for Zechus, that we return him and reconsider the verdict?
(c) Answer: "V'Naki (v'Tzadik) Al Taharog".
(d) Question: What is the source that if Beis Din acquitted Ploni, and someone had a reason for Chiyuv, that we do not reconsider the verdict?
(e) Answer: "V'Tzadik Al Taharog".
(f) (Rav Simi bar Ashi): The opposite applies to a Mesis (we return to Mechayev, not to acquit) - "V'Lo Sachmol v'Lo Sechaseh Alav".
(g) (Rav Kahana): We learn from "Ki Harog Tahargenu".
(h) Question (R. Zeira): What is the source that someone sentenced or exempted from Galus (for killing unintentionally) has the same law (like regular capital transgressions, we only overturn a verdict of Chiyuv)?
(i) Answer (Rav Sheshes): We learn from a Gezerah Shavah "Rotze'ach-Rotze'ach".
(j) Question (R. Zeira): What is the source for someone sentenced or exempted from lashes?
(k) Answer (Rav Sheshes): We learn from a Gezerah Shavah "Rasha-Rasha".
(l) Support (Beraisa): We learn Chayavei Galuyos from "Rotze'ach-Rotze'ach"; we learn Chayavei Malkos from "Rasha-Rasha".
(m) (Mishnah): We do not overturn a verdict of Zechus.
(n) (R. Chiya bar Aba citing R. Yochanan): This is only if the mistake was about something that the Tzedukim (who do not rely on our Oral tradition) do not agree to - but something that even they agree to is such a basic mistake, we overturn it.
(o) Question (R. Chiya bar Aba): What if they exempted adulterers?
(p) Answer (R. Yochanan): You can answer that from what you already know (the above law - Tzedukim admit to this).
(q) (R. Ami): If they exempted adulterers, we overturn this.
(r) Question: What is a case (of adultery) which we do not overturn? (The Mishnah said that in capital cases, we do not overturn a verdict of Zechus - it did not specify, implying that this applies (at least sometimes) to every capital transgression.)
(s) Answer: They exempted them for unnatural relations.
(a) (Mishnah): In monetary cases, anyone can give a reason for Zechus or Chiyuv...
(b) Inference: *Anyone* includes the witnesses.
(c) Suggestion: Our Mishnah is like R. Yosi b'Rebbi Yehudah, it is not like Chachamim.
1. (Beraisa): "V'Ed Echad Lo Ya'aneh v'Nefesh" - for Zechus or Chiyuv.
2. R. Yosi b'Rebbi Yehudah says, he can speak for Zechus, not for Chiyuv.
(d) Answer (Rav Papa): No, *anyone* includes the Talmidim; all agree to the Mishnah.
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