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Shabbos 44


The Gemara concludes that it is permitted to move the body of a dead person, which is Muktzah, by way of "Tiltul Min ha'Tzad," or moving Muktzah indirectly, in order to save it from being destroyed in a fire. The Rabanan permitted moving the body out of concern that one might otherwise be tempted to extinguish the fire.

TOSFOS (DH d'Kuli Alma) infers from the conclusion of the Sugya that "Tiltul Min ha'Tzad" in any normal circumstance would be forbidden. However, Tosfos explains that there are two types of "Tiltul Min ha'Tzad," and only one of them is forbidden:

(1) Lifting a permissible object that is not Muktzah which touches and moves a Muktzah object while it is being lifted, is permitted, since the person is interested in the moving the non-Muktzah object and the Muktzah object is just being moved indirectly.

(2) If one is interested in moving the Muktzah object, even if he does so by way of moving something permissible, it is forbidden.

The ROSH adds a third type of "Tiltul Min ha'Tzad."
(3) If one moves a Muktzah object with a part of his body that is usually not used for moving that object (such as with his elbows or feet), even if his purpose is to move the Muktzah object itself, it is permitted.
QUESTIONS: The Gemara cites a Beraisa in which Rebbi Elazar b'Rebbi Shimon argues with his father, Rebbi Shimon. Rebbi Elazar states that a person may take and use oil from a lamp that went out, and he may even use oil that dripped from a lamp while the lamp is still aflame.

In what way, though, is he arguing with Rebbi Shimon? Rebbi Shimon agrees that when the lamp is no longer lit, it is permitted to take oil from it and use it; when the lamp is still aflame, it is prohibited to take oil directly from the lamp (because of the Melachah of extinguishing). If oil drips out while the lamp is lit, Rebbi Shimon did not state that he would prohibit the oil.


(a) RASHI explains that when Rebbi Elazar said that one may use the oil "when the lamp goes out," he meant that the lamp is *in the process of going out*, but it is still lit. Rebbi Elazar maintains that once it is clear that the candle will not be able to burn much longer, oil may be removed from the lamp without transgressing the Melachah of extinguishing. (Since the flame is on its way out and will not consume this oil anyway, it is not considered extinguishing when one removes the oil.) Rebbi Shimon, though, maintains that the oil is Muktzah because the candle is still burning and when a person lights a candle before Shabbos, he does not have in mind to use the oil that remains in the lamp as it is going out.

According to Rashi it would appear that both Rebbi Shimon and his son agree that when oil drips out of the lamp it is permitted to use that oil, since it is not in a burning candle. (See Maharsha and Sefas Emes on Rashi, see also Chart #8; footnote #3)

(b) Other Rishonim (TOSFOS HA'ROSH, RITVA, TOSFOS 42b, DH b'Ein) explain that while the candle is burning, even if it is beginning to go out, it is forbidden according to *everyone* to take oil from the lamp, because of the Melachah of extinguishing. The argument between Rebbi Shimon and Rebbi Elazar concerns oil that drips from the lamp while it is still lit. Rebbi Shimon prohibits using such oil, because a person does not consider before Shabbos the possibility of using the oil that drips while the lamp is aflame. Therefore, one may not eat or use the oil that dripped until after the candle goes out.

(See Chart #8 for more details.)


OPINIONS: The Mishnah in Kelim that the Gemara cites says that a non-removable "Muchni" can protect utensils from becoming Tamei in an Ohel ha'Meis, a sheltered area under which a corpse lies. What is a "Muchni," and what is the case in which the Muchni can prevent utensils from becoming Tamei?
(a) RASHI seems to say that the case is when the Muchni or wagon wheel, was attached to a wagon that was traveling in a graveyard. The wagon wheels were "taller than the height of the wagon" (the open, upper part of the side of the wagon). Some utensils which were loaded in the wagon protruded above the top of the wagon's side, but not higher than the top of the wheel. Tum'ah would come up and enter the top of the wagon from the side and be Metamei the utensils, if not for the wheel protecting them.

(b) However, TOSFOS challenges Rashi's explanation and says that we have never heard of such a thing as Tum'ah creeping in from the side. Therefore, Tosfos explains that the Mishnah is talking about a wooden vessel that holds a volume of at least 40 Se'ah (like Rashi explains), and it is sealed closed (with a Tzamid Pasil) which protects everything inside from becoming Tamei.

However, this 40 Se'ah wooden vessel has a hole in it (either on the side or on the bottom), and the Muchni is covering the hole, making it less than a Tefach in diameter. The Muchni itself is a flat wooden wheel ("Peshutei Kli Etz") that cannot become Tamei. Since the Muchni is not covering the entire hole, but has left a space less than a Tefach in the hole of the wooden vessel, it will only block Tum'ah from rising up into the Muchni if it has been affixed there *permanently* (see Bava Basra 19b, and Tosfos 20 DH Hi). If the wheel is removable, Tum'ah will enter through the hole and will be Metamei anything inside the large wooden vessel.

Alternatively, the Muchni is itself a wooden vessel (which can hold only *less* than 40 Se'ah, and therefore *can* become Tamei) and it is covering the entire hole. If it is non-removable, then it is part of the entire wooden vessel (to which it is affixed, which is larger than 40 Se'ah and not Mekabel Tum'ah), and it too cannot become Tamei. It therefore blocks Tum'ah from coming into the hole. If it is removable, then it is not part of the larger wooden vessel but a smaller vessel in its own right, and it *can* become Tamei. It therefore does not block Tum'ah from ascending into the hole. (RAN, quoting "Yesh Mefarshim")

(c) The RITVA here (and the BARTENURA in Kelim) explain that Rashi did not mean that the wheel protects against Tum'ah from coming in *from the side*. Rather, the wheels are *underneath* the wagon, and as it traveled through a graveyard, utensils were protruding horizontally over the side of the wagon, above the wheels. If the wheel is not removable, then it is not Mekabel Tum'ah and it prevents the Tum'ah from reaching the utensils. If the Muchni is removable, on the other hand, then it does not prevent the Tum'ah from reaching the utensils since the Muchni itself is Mekabel Tum'ah, and it cannot prevent Tum'ah from spreading to other objects.

How can the Ritva's explanation be seen in the words of Rashi? Rashi says that the wheels are "higher" than the walls of the wagon! To understand how the Ritva's explanation is seen in the words of Rashi, we must look at a number of other questions which the Rishonim ask on Rashi's explanation of the Mishnah:

(1) Why does the Mishnah say "Muchni" -- "wheel," in the singular form? A wagon must have at least two wheels, one on each side.

(2) As the wheel rolls over the graveyard, it is resting directly on top of the ground, and there is no one Tefach separation between the ground and the bottom of the wheel. How, then, can the wheel prevent the upward diffusion of Tum'ah? It must be an Ohel to stop Tum'ah from spreading, and it is only an Ohel if there is a Tefach of empty space between it and the ground!

It could be that in order to answer these questions, Rashi understood that the Mishnah was referring to a wagon with *one* long wheel underneath it, extending from one side of the wagon to the other side (like a modern steam-roller). The long wheel was hollow in the middle, with at least a Tefach of space inside between the bottom of the wheel and the top. The hollow of a Tefach inside the wheel serves as the Ohel to block the Tum'ah from ascending above the wheel.

When Rashi refers to the height of the wheel being greater than the height of the wagon, he means the *length* of the wheel (which, if stood upwards, would be its height) as it extends from one side of the wagon to the other. That length -- or "height" -- is greater than the corresponding length of the wagon, such that part of the wheel protrudes beyond the wagon on each side. (Rashi calls this measure of the wheel its "height" in contradistinction to its width, or diameter, describing it as a pillar lying down.) If this is correct, Rashi is clearly saying exactly what the the Ritva understands him to be saying. (M. KORNFELD)

QUESTION: If the "Muchni" (wheel, see previous Insight) is permanently attached to the wagon, even if there is money on the Muchni, one may drag it on Shabbos. This is the conclusion of the Gemara.

What difference does it make whether the Muchni is attached permanently or not? It is serving as a "Basis l'Davar ha'Asur" -- a base for a forbidden object (money) -- and it should be forbidden to be moved!


(a) TOSFOS (DH Ein) explains that an object only becomes a "Basis" if the Muktzah item is on top of the *primary part* of the object. If it is on top of a secondary part of the object, the object does not become a "Basis."

(b) The RAMBAM (in Perush ha'Mishnayos) explains that the Muchni is not a wheel, but a drawer that slides in and out. When the Gemara says that it is permissible to move it when it has money on top, it means that one may slide the drawer in and out if it is permanently attached and cannot be removed. The reason is because when an object is a "Basis" for Muktzah, its status as a "Basis" only prohibits moving the entire item from its place, but moving part of it is permitted. If the drawer is removable, then it is considered a separate utensil and moving it isA like moving an entire object and is prohibited.

(c) The RITVA says that the case in the Mishnah cited by the Gemara is when there is something which is *not* Muktzah inside the wagon, and there is money which *is* Muktzah on top of the wheel. The Halachah is that an object which serves as a "Basis" for both a permissible object and a forbidden one *may* be moved (Shabbos 141a). If the Muchni is removable, it is not considered part of the wagon, but has its own, individual identity, and thus it is one object with only one item on top of it, an item of Muktzah. If the Muchni is non-removable, then together with the wagon it constitutes one object (that is, the wheel is just an extension of the wagon), and that single object has on it both a permissible object and a Muktzah object, and therefore it may be moved.

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