POINT BY POINT SUMMARY
Prepared by P. Feldman
of Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
Ask A Question on the daf
Previous daf Yevamos 121
1) SIGNS WHICH CHANGE AFTER DEATH
(a) Question: What is the difference between the 2
2) WHEN MAY WE TESTIFY THAT A MAN DIED
(b) Answer #1: He was slaughtered in a marble house, and
moved before dying.
(c) Answer #2: He was slaughtered outside, and did not move.
(d) (Mishnah): R. Yehudah says, not all men ...
(e) Question: Does R. Yehudah Ben Bava allow more time to
identify the body, or less?
(f) Answer: A man drowned; his body was recovered after 3
days, and Rav Dimi of Nehardai permitted his wife to
(g) A man drowned in the Diglas River, and his body was
recovered after 5 days, and Rava permitted his wife to
1. We understand, if R. Yehudah Ben Bava allows more
time - these Amoraim hold as R. Yehudah Ben Bava.
(h) (Mishnah): If a man fell into water, whether or not the
water has an end (one can see the shore), his wife is
2. Question: But if R. Yehudah Ben Bava allows less
time - who did they rule as?
3. Answer: This is no proof - a body in water may be
recognized for more time, it prevents swelling and
distortion of the face.
4. Objection: But above, we said that water aggravates
5. Answer: When there is a wound, it aggravates it;
when there is no wound, it preserves the body.
i. This only applies if he was seen right after
removal from the water; but if there was a
delay, he swells up and changes.
1. R. Meir: A man fell into the great reservoir, and he
came out after 3 days.
(i) (Gemara - Beraisa - R. Meir): If a man fell into water,
whether or not the water has an end, his wife is
forbidden; Chachamim say, if the water has an end, his
wife is permitted; if it has no end, she is forbidden.
2. R. Yosi: A blind man went to immerse in a cave; the
man leading him went after him. People with them
waited until they surely drowned, and their wives
were permitted to remarry.
i. There was another case in Asya of a man lowered
into water; when they lifted him, only his leg
came up. Chachamim ruled - if more than the
knee came up, his wife may marry; if not, she
(j) Question: What is the case of water with an end?
(k) Answer (Abaye): A person can see the end of the water in
all 4 directions.
(l) A man drowned in the swamp of Samki; Rav Shilo permitted
his wife to marry.
1. Rav (to Shmuel): We should excommunicate him!
(m) (Beraisa - Rebbi): 2 men were setting fish traps in the
Yarden. 1 entered a hole to catch fish. The sun set, and
he could not find the opening. His companion waited until
he surely drowned, and informed his family of his death.
2. Shmuel: First, let us ask him.
i. They sent to him: What is the law by water with
no end? He answered: his wife is forbidden.
3. Rav and Shmuel: The swamp of Samki - is this as
water with an end, or without an end?
4. Rav Shilo: Without an end.
5. Rav and Shmuel: Why did you permit the woman?
6. Rav Shilo: I erred; I thought, since the water is
stagnant, it is as water with an end.
i. This is wrong - there are waves, and these
could take him far away (beyond vision of the
7. Shmuel: "Sin will not occur to a Tzadik (Hash-m
didn't allow Rav to excommunicate R. Shilo
8. Rav: "Salvation comes through great counsel".
1. In the morning, he saw the opening, and returned
home, where they were eulogizing him.
(n) Question: Even water with an end, we should be concerned
for a fishing hole!
2. Rebbi: How great are the words of Chachamim, who
said, water with an end - his wife is permitted;
water without an end - she is forbidden.
(o) Answer: Fishing holes are not common in water with an
(p) (Rav Ashi): This that Chachamim say, water without an
end, she is forbidden - that is only by a regular person.
But if a Chacham died, she is permitted - if he survived,
word would spread.
1. This is wrong - whether he is a Chacham or not, if
he fell in endless water, Lechatchilah, his wife
cannot marry; B'diavad, if she married, she may stay
(q) (Beraisa - R. Gamliel): I was once on a boat, and I saw a
boat sink; I was distressed, for R. Akiva was on the
boat. When I got to the dry land, I saw him learning.
1. R. Gamliel: How did you get to the land?
(r) (Beraisa - R. Akiva): I was once on a boat, and I saw a
boat sink; I was distressed, for R. Meir was on the boat.
When I got to the dry land, I saw him learning.
2. R. Akiva: I found a board of the boat; every time a
wave came, I nodded my head to it.
i. Chachamim learned from here, if evil people
come to a person, he should nod his head.
3. R. Gamliel: How great are the words of Chachamim,
who said, water with an end - his wife is permitted;
water without an end - she is forbidden
1. R. Akiva: How did you reach the land?
2. R. Meir: 1 wave carried me to the next wave, and the
next to the next, until I was deposited on the land.
3. R. Akiva: How great are the words of Chachamim, who
said, water with an end - his wife is permitted;
water without an end - she is forbidden
(a) (Beraisa): If a man fell into a den of lions, we may not
testify on him; into a pit of snakes and scorpions, we
may testify on him. R. Yehudah Ben Beseirah says, even
into a pit of snakes and scorpions, we may not testify -
we are concerned that he is a snake-charmer.
3) SECOND-HAND TESTIMONY OF A DEATH
1. Chachamim: Since there is no room, he steps on them,
and they harm him.
(b) (Beraisa): If a man fell into a furnace, we may testify
on him; also, if he fell into a cauldron of boiling wine
or oil. R. Acha says, if he fell into oil, we may
testify, since it burns; into wine, we may not, since it
extinguishes the flame (when it splashes).
1. Chachamim At first it extinguishes; later, it burns.
(c) (Mishnah - R. Meir): A man fell into the great reservoir
(d) (Beraisa): Chachamim said to R. Meir - we cannot bring a
proof from miracles.
(e) Question: What was the miracle?
1. Suggestion: If that he survived without eating or
drinking for 3 days - but the Jews in Shushan fasted
3 days on Esther's command!
(f) Answer: Rather, he went 3 days without sleeping.
1. (R. Yochanan): If a man swears that he will not
sleep for 3 days - he is immediately lashed, and he
may sleep when he wants (i.e. since it is
impossible, he took a vain oath).
(g) Question: What is R. Meir's reason?
(h) Answer (Rav Kahana): There were structures for him to
1. Chachamim hold, since they were of marble, he would
slip, he could not sleep.
(i) (Beraisa): The daughter of Nechunya the reservoir-digger
fell into a reservoir. They informed R. Chanina Ben Dosa.
The first hour he said 'Shalom'; also, the 2nd hour. The
3rd hour, he said that she has already escaped.
2. R. Meir holds, he would be able to sleep for a short
1. R. Chanina Ben Dosa: Who took you out?
(j) (R. Aba): Still, his son died of thirst.
2. The girl: There were 2 sheep, and an old man leading
3. Rabanan (to R. Chanina Ben Dosa): Are you a prophet?
4. R. Chanina Ben Dosa: I am neither a prophet nor the
son of one - but I knew that since Nechunya gave his
soul for this, his seed would not die through it.
1. "Around him is most Nisharah (stormy)" - Hash-m is
exacting with his Tzadikim as a Sa'arah (hair).
2. R. Chanina: We learn this from "Hash-m is feared
among the Holy; he is awesome among all around him."
(a) (Mishnah): Even if Reuven heard women saying, 'Ploni
died' (Reuven may testify that he died); R. Yehudah says,
even if he heard children saying, we are going to bury
and eulogize Ploni;
(b) It doesn't matter whether the one who mentioned his death
intended to testify; R. Yehudah Ben Bava says, if a
Yisrael said that he died, we rely on this even if he
intended to testify; if a Nochri said that he died, we
rely on this only if he did not intend to testify.
(c) (Gemara) Question: Perhaps the children never went to the
(d) Answer (Rav Yehudah): They said, we are coming from the
eulogizing and burying of Ploni.
(e) Question: Perhaps they buried an ant, and named it Ploni!
(f) Answer: They said, this many Chachamim were there, this
many eulogizers were there.
(g) (Mishnah): If a Nochri intended to testify, we may not
rely on this.
(h) (Rav Yehudah): This is only if he intended to permit; if
he intended to testify, he is believed.
(i) Question: How do we know his intention?
(j) Answer (Rav Yosef): If he comes to Beis Din and says,
Ploni died, let his wife marry -this is intent to permit;
if he just says, Ploni died - this is intent to testify.
(k) (Reish Lakish): The Mishnah is a case when he intended to
permit; if he intended to testify, he is believed.
(l) Objection (R. Yochanan): There was a case - Oshiya
b'Rebbi said as you - 85 Chachamim argued against him.
1. Question: If he is never believed with intention -
when is he believed? (The Mishnah implies that
sometimes he is believed!)
(m) A Nochri was saying, 'Woe to the soldier in Pumbadisa
that died' - Rav Yosef (some say Rava) permitted his
2. Answer: When he speaks innocently (i.e. unaware of
any legal consequences of his words).
i. A Nochri was saying, 'Who is from Chivoy's
house? Who is from Chivoy's house? Chivoy
died!' Rav Yosef permitted his wife to marry.
(n) A Nochri was saying, 'Who is from Chasa's house? Chasa
1. Version #1 - Rav Nachman: Alas! Fish ate Chasa!
(o) A Nochri was telling a Yisrael: 'Cut fodder and give it
to my animals on Shabbos - if not, I will kill you as I
killed Ploni the Yisrael, because he refused to cook for
me on Shabbos.'.
2. Chasa's wife got married based on hearing Rav
Nachman say this - no one rebuked her for doing so.
i. (Rav Ashi): We learn from this - this that was
taught, if a man seemingly drowned in endless
water, his wife may not marry - B'diavad, if
she married, she may remain married.
3. Version #2: Rav Nachman permitted Chasa's wife to
i. He reasoned - Chasa is a great man - had he
come to safety, we would have heard!
ii. This is wrong - whether or not he is a great
man, Lechatchilah, his wife may not marry;
B'diavad, she may stay married.
(p) Ploni's wife heard this and came before Abaye. He
required her to wait until Chachamim gathered on the