(Permission is granted to print and redistribute this material
as long as this header and the footer at the end are included.)


brought to you by Kollel Iyun Hadaf of Har Nof
Rosh Kollel: Rav Mordecai Kornfeld

Ask A Question about the Daf

Previous daf

Shabbos 58

QUESTION: The Beraisa says that a slave *may* go out on Shabbos into Reshus ha'Rabim with a bell that is sewn to his garment. However, the same Beraisa says that he may *not* go out with a slave's badge, presumably even if it is sewn on to his garment. Why not? Why is a badge different from a bell?


(a) TOSFOS (DH Hacha b'Mai Askinan) explains that the Rabanan prohibited going out with a badge even when it is sewn on, lest one go out with a badge that is not sewn on. However, they permitted going out with a bell that is sewn on because it was very common to sew bells to garments, and the Rabanan did not want to trouble people to remove their bells from their clothing before Shabbos. It is much less common to sew a slave's badge to his garment, and therefore the Rabanan did enact a decree that he may not go out with it on Shabbos even if it is sewn on.

(b) The RITVA and RAN explain that it is indeed *permitted* to go out with a badge that is sewn on to the slave's garment. When the Beraisa says that he may not go out with a badge, it is referring to a *normal* badge which is not sewn to his garment. When the Beraisa says that he may go out with a bell, it is referring to the *normal* type of bell, which *is* sewn on to his garment.

QUESTION: The Beraisa teaches that an animal may not go out into Reshus ha'Rabim on Shabbos with a bell, even if it is sewn on to its garment. Why is the Halachah more stringent with regard to an animal, prohibiting it from going out with a bell sewn to its garment, than with regard to a slave, who is permitted to go out with a bell sewn to his garment?
(a) The MAHARAM and MAHARSHA explain that it is not common to sew a bell to an animal's garment, so the Rabanan did not permit going out with that type of bell (lest one let the animal out with a bell that is not sewn on) just like they did not permit a slave to go out with a badge sewn to his garment (see previous Insight, (a)).

(b) However, TOSFOS (DH Lo Tetzei, and 54b, DH Mishum) seems to suggest another explanation. An animal wearing a bell gives the appearance that it is being taken to the market place. A slave wearing a bell gives no such appearance.


QUESTION: The Gemara says that our Beraisa (58a) is talking about an animal's bell that does not have a clapper, and that is why it cannot become Tamei. The Gemara then asks why an animal's bell without a clapper should not be Tamei -- if the bell is an ornament and considered a Kli, then it should be Tamei even *without* a clapper.

However, the Gemara, in the next line, reveals that it is aware of a Beraisa which clearly states that bells of various uses are Mekabel Tum'ah *only* if they have a clapper! Why, then, is the Gemara so perturbed by the fact than an animal's bell is not Mekabel Tum'ah only if it does not have a clapper? (MAHARAM)

ANSWER: When discussing the bell of an animal, the Gemara thought that the bell has *no use* other than being *decorative*. If so, it should not make any difference whether or not it has a clapper, since it is decorative either way.

The bells mentioned in the Beraisa which the Gemara then brings, on the other hand, are bells which are *Kelim*, and which are used specifically for making noise. Therefore, without a clapper, those bells are not complete utensils and they are not Mekabel Tum'ah.

Similarly, when the Gemara answers its question about the animal's bell by saying that an animal's bell is considered a Kli because it makes noise, it means that since it is a Kli and not just an ornament, it is Mekabel Tum'ah only if it has a clapper and produces a sound. That is, an animal's bell is indeed not an ornament for the animal, but it is an object that man uses. How does man use it? By listening for the bell to know where his animal is. (M. Kornfeld. This seems to be the intention of the Maharam's answer as well.)

Next daf


This article is provided as part of Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Permission is granted to redistribute electronically or on paper,
provided that this notice is included intact.
For information on subscriptions, archives, and other Shema Yisrael
Classes, send mail to daf@shemayisrael.co.il

Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Jerusalem, Israel

In the U.S.:
Tel. (908) 370-3344
Fax. (908) 367-6608

Toll free line for dedications: 1-800-574-2646