BAVA BASRA 128ֲ (5 Sivan) - Dedicated l'Zecher Nishmas Reb Chaim Aryeh ben Aharon Stern Z'L by Shmuel Gut of Brooklyn, N.Y.

[128a - 28 lines; 128b - 32 lines]

1)[line 1]רצונך השבע וטולRETZONCHA HISHAVA V'TOL- if it is your will, then swear and take [the slave]. Although neither the claimant nor the defendant is obligated to take an oath (the defendant, because oaths are not taken for claims of land, loan documents, or slaves - see Background to Bava Kama 96:44, and the claimant, because a Shevu'ah is made only to exempt oneself from payment and not to force the other party to pay - see Background to Bava Kama 96:43), nevertheless ,the defendant offered to give the slave to the claimant if he swears that it belongs to him.

2)[line 3]נאמן עלי אבאNE'EMAN ALAI ABA- my father, to me, is trustworthy [to be an impartial judge in our case]

3)[line 4]רועי בקרRO'EI VAKAR- cattle shepherds (such shepherds are not expert in monetary law and thus cannot serve as judges)

4)[line 9]גובין מן העבדיםGOVIN MIN HA'AVADIM- we collect from slaves. When a debtor dies, the creditor may collect his loan by taking the slaves that the debtor's heirs inherited.

5)[line 11]שלישי בשני כשרSHELISHI B'SHENI KASHER - the third generation is valid [to testify] for the second generation (e.g. Reuven and Shimon are brothers. Reuven's grandson may testify on behalf (or against) Shimon's son. That is, a first cousin once removed may testify for his [father's first] cousin.) (EDUS: PESULEI KURVAH)

The Gemara (see Rosh Hashanah 22a) lists the people who are Pesulei Edus, those people who are disqualified to judge or to give testimony. Among them are relatives, who may not join together in one set of witnesses or one court. Only close relatives would be disqualified such as parents, siblings and cousins.

6)[line 14]היה יודע לו בעדות קרקע עד שלא נסתמא, ונסתמאHAYAH YODE'A LO B'EDUS KARKA AD SHE'LO NISTAMEI, V'NISTAMEI- he had knowledge of testimony about land before he became blind, and then he became blind (before he testified)

7)[line 16]דמכוין מצרנהאMECHAVEIN MATZRENAHA- he is able to define the boundaries

8)[line 17]גלימאGELIMA- a cloak

9)[line 19]נסכאNASKA- a bar of silver (or gold)

10)[line 21]חתנוCHASANO- his son in law

11a)[line 22]פיקחPIKE'ACH- a person with full faculties; the opposite of a Cheresh

b)[line 22]ונתחרשNISCHARESH- he became deaf (and mute)

12a)[line 22]פיתחPITE'ACH- he was able to see

b)[line 22]ונסתמאNISTAMEI- he became blind

13a)[line 22]שפויSHAFUY- he was sane

b)[line 23]ונשתטהNISHTATEH- he became a Shoteh (lit. a fool), a person who is mad or deranged


14)[line 5]כרבי יוחנן בן ברוקהK'REBBI YOCHANAN BEN BEROKAH- in accordance with the opinion of Rebbi Yochanan ben Berokah (who maintains that a father has the right to grant one son a larger share of the inheritance than the others)

15)[line 10]כרבי יהודהK'REBBI YEHUDAH- in accordance with the opinion of Rebbi Yehudah (who maintains that a father is believed to say that one of his sons is the firstborn, even if, until then, a different son was assumed to be the firstborn)

16)[line 13]ובנכסים של עכשיוNECHASIM SHEL ACHSHAV- property [that he owns as] of now (that is, the woman receives only a share of the property that her husband owns at the time that he makes his statement; she does not receive a share of any property that he acquires after the date of the gift)

17)[line 14]ובבנים הבאין לאחר מכאןBANIM HA'BA'IN L'ACHAR MI'KAN- children that are born afterwards (the share that the wife receives will depend on the number of children that the husband has at the time of his death)

18)[line 18]הרי זה נשבע וגובה מחצה מנכסים בני חוריןHAREI ZEH NISHBA V'GOVEH MECHETZEH MI'NECHASIM BENEI CHORIN- he (the debtor) must swear (that he repaid half of the debt), and he (the creditor) then collects the other half from mobile property (but not from land purchased from the debtor after he took the loan)

19)[line 21]משיב אבדה הויMESHIV AVEIDAH HEVI- it is considered as though he is only returning a lost object, and he is exempt [from taking an oath] (in a case where he admitted to owing part of a claim against him which could not be proven)

20)[line 23]אירתותי אירתתIRTUSEI IRTAS- he is afraid (that the witnesses will testify against him)

21)[line 25]מודה מקצת הטענה הויMODEH MIKTZAS HA'TA'ANAH HEVI - it is considered like a case of Modeh b'Miktzas (SHEVU'AH: MODEH B'MIKTZAS HA'TA'ANAH)

If a person admits that he owes part of a claim, we suspect that the claim is true and that the debtor wants to temporarily postpone part of the payment but does not have the audacity to completely deny the claim. He is therefore required to take an oath, mid'Oraisa, that he does not owe the part he denies (Shemos 22:8). If he refuses to take the oath, he must pay the entire amount being claimed.

22)[line 31]דרב נחמן מאי?D'RAV NACHMAN MAI?- What is the ruling in the case in which he argues with Rav Nachman (regarding whether a creditor may collect slaves from the heirs of a deceased debtor)?