POINT BY POINT OUTLINE
THE FREIDA MILLER MASECHES MIDOS
prepared by Rabbi P. Feldman of Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
1) GATES AND WALLS OF HAR HA'BAYIS
(a) (Mishnah 3): Inside (the wall of) Har ha'Bayis was the Soreg. It was a fence ten Tefachim tall;
(b) The kings of Yavan made 13 breaches in it. Yisrael fixed them, and enacted to bow at those 13 places.
(c) Inside the Soreg was the Cheil, (a space of) ten Amos;
(d) There were 12 steps from the Cheil (up to Ezras Nashim). Each step was a half-Amah wide and a half-Amah tall.
(e) All the steps (in Har ha'Bayis) were like this, except for those in front of the Ulam (Mishnah 3:6);
(f) All the openings and gates (in Har ha'Bayis) were 20 Amos tall and 10 Amos wide, except for that of the Ulam (Mishnah 3:7);
(g) All the openings had doors, except for that of the Ulam;
(h) All the gates had a (horizontal) lintel on top, except for Tadi, which was covered by two rocks, leaning diagonally on each other (like an (inverted) V-shaped roof. Gra - this reminded people not to use it, to spare Ba'alei Keri, who left through there, from shame.)
(i) (Bnei Yisrael were poor when they built Bayis Sheni.) Later, (after they became richer,) all the gates were covered with gold, except for Nikanor, since a miracle was done for it;
1. Some say this was because its copper shined (alternatively - resembled gold).
(j) (Mishnah 4): All the walls (in Har ha'Bayis) were tall, except for the eastern wall, for the Kohen who burns Parah Adumah stands on Har ha'Mishchah, and he must be able to see the opening of the Heichal when sprinkling its blood.
(k) (Mishnah 5): Ezras Nashim was 135 Amos by 135 Amos. In each of the four corners was a Lishkah, 40 Amos by 40 Amos:
1. They did not have ceilings. They will also be this way in the future -- "... ha'Chatzer ha'Chitzonah;... Chatzeros Keturos;
2. "Keturos" means that they do not have a ceiling.
(l) Question: What were they used for?
(m) Answer: The southeast corner was Lishkas ha'Nezirim; where Nezirim cooked the Shelamim, shaved their heads and put the hair under the pot;
1. The northeast corner was Lishkas ha'Etzim. There, blemished Kohanim check wood;
i. (Moist) wormy wood may not be used for the Mizbe'ach. (If it is dry, the bad area is scraped away and the wood is valid.)
2. The northwest corner was Lishkas Metzora'im. (A Metzora who had immersed on day seven would go to this Lishkah on day eight, immerse again, and wait there until the blood of his Asham was ready to be put on him);
3. R. Eliezer ben Yakov: I forgot the usage of the southwest corner.
4. Aba Shaul says, it was Lishkas ha'Shemanim, wine and oil were stored there.
(n) Version #1 (Rosh): At first, the walls of Ezras Nashim were smooth. (There was no ceiling. During Simchas Beis ha'Sho'evah, women were inside and men outside, this led to lightheadedness);
(o) Version #2 (Rambam): At first, Ezras Nashim did not have walls; (end of Version #2)
1. They extended ledges from the walls and built a roof (Rambam - they built walls), so women could (sit there and) see from above, and the men would be below, without mixing together.
(p) There were 15 steps from Ezras Nashim up to Ezras Yisrael, corresponding to the 15 chapters of Shir ha'Ma'alos in Tehilim;
1. The Leviyim sing on these steps (during Simchas Beis ha'Sho'evah), they were not long and rectangular, rather, semicircles.
2) THE LAYOUT OF THE AZARAH
(a) (Mishnah 6): There were Lishkos underneath Ezras Yisrael which opened to Ezras Nashim. The Leviyim kept their instruments there;
(b) Ezras Yisrael was 135 Amos long and 11 Amos wide. Ezras Kohanim was the same. The ends of beams demarcated the border between them.
(c) R. Eliezer ben Yakov says, there was a step (between these Azaros) an Amah tall. The Duchan (on which the Leviyah sing) was on it. (Bartenura - the step is part of Ezras Yisrael. Rosh - it is part of Ezras Kohanim);
1. In it (the Duchan; Rashash - Ezras Kohanim) there were three half-Amah steps. In all, Ezras Kohanim was two and a half Amos above Ezras Yisrael.
(d) The entire Azarah (including Ezras Yisrael and Ezras Kohanim) was 187 Amos long and 135 Amos wide.
(e) There were 13 places where it was enacted to bow;
(f) Aba Yosi ben Chanan says, these correspond to the 13 gates (of the Azarah. The Tana of Mishnah 2:3 attributes them to the 13 breaches made by the kings of Yavan. He could hold like Mishnah 1:4, which counts only seven gates of the Azarah. Aba Yosi counts six more gates, and calls some of the seven by different names.)
1. In the south, starting from the west, were Sha'ar ha'Elyon, Sha'ar ha'Delek, Sha'ar ha'Bechoros (Mishnah 1:4 called this Sha'ar ha'Korban) and Sha'ar ha'Mayim.
2. Question: Why was it called Sha'ar ha'Mayim?
3. Answer #1: The flask of water for Nisuch ha'Mayim on Sukos was brought through it.
4. Answer #2 (R. Eliezer ben Yakov): This is the place of Mayim Mefakim. (Yechezkel 47:2 discusses a miniscule spring that comes out from the Kodesh ha'Kodashim. It keeps widening. when it reaches this Sha'ar, it is as wide as the mouth of a Pach (jar).)
5. In the north, starting from the west, were Sha'ar Yechanyah, Sha'ar ha'Korban, Sha'ar ha'Nashim (where women enter to perform Semichah to their Korbanos, or to be present while their Korban is being offered) and Sha'ar ha'Shir.
i. The first was called Sha'ar Yechanyah because Yechanyah left through it when he was exiled (with 1000 great Chachamim, 11 years before the first Churban).
6. In the east was Sha'ar Nikanor. It had two small openings, one to the right and one to the left;
7. There were two gates in the west without names.
3) THE SIZE OF THE MIZBE'ACH
(a) (Mishnah): The (base of the) Mizbe'ach was 32 Amos by 32 Amos. The base was one Amah tall. The Mizbe'ach was recessed one Amah (in each direction), so the Mizbe'ach above the base was 30 by 30;
(b) Above the base, the Mizbe'ach rose five Amos until the Sovev, then it recessed one Amah. The Mizbe'ach above the Sovev was 28 by 28;
(c) Each corner was one Amah square. The Mizbe'ach within the corners was 26 by 26;
(d) The walkway on top of the Mizbe'ach (within the corners) was one Amah in each direction. The Ma'arachah was 24 by 24.
(e) When the exiles returned (with Ezra, to build the second Beis ha'Mikdash), they added four Amos onto the Mizbe'ach on the south side, and four Amos on the west side -- the addition was an "L" shape -- "veha'Ari'el (the Mizbe'ach of the first Beis ha'Mikdash) Shteim Esreh Orech bi'Shteim Esreh Rochav Ravu'a."
1. Suggestion: Perhaps it was (in all) 12 Amos by 12 Amos!
2. Rejection: It says "El Arba'as Reva'av" -- it was 12 Amos in every direction from the middle.
(f) Chut ha'Sikra (a red line) girds the Mizbe'ach in the middle, to distinguish between (the place for) upper and lower blood.
(g) The Yesod went across the entire northern and western sides. It occupied one Amah on the southern and eastern sides.