[48a - 35 lines; 48b - 54 lines]

*********************GIRSA SECTION*********************

We recommend using the textual changes suggested by the Bach and the marginal notes of the Vilna Shas. This section is devoted to any other important corrections that Acharonim have pointed out in the Gemara, Rashi and Tosfos.

[1] Gemara 48a [line 28]:

The words "Amar Lei, Ka Chazis d'Lo Mekabel Marus!" אמר ליה קא חזית דלא מקבל מרות

should be "Amar Lah, Ka Chazis d'Lo Mekabel Marus!" אמר לה קא חזית דלא מקבל מרות (RASHASH, based on Ein Yakov)

(Alternatively, the text of the Beis Nasan manuscript reads, "Amar Lei, Kol Kamah Chazis v'Lo Mekabla Alach?") אמר ליה כל כמה חזית ולא מקבלה עלך


1)[line 6]אחוי לשמי טללאACHAVEI L'SHMEI TELALA- pointed up to the ceiling

2)[line 6]נפק לבראNAFAK L'VARA- went outside

3)[line 9]בוצין בוצין מקטפיה ידיעBOTZIN BOTZIN MI'KATFEI YEDI'A- [the quality of] pumpkins is known by testing the sap from which they are formed, i.e. future Talmidei Chachamim are recognizable at a young age

4)[line 23]אחוהACHU'AH- her brother

5)[line 25]יקראYEKARA- honor

6)[line 27]"סלסלה ותרוממך תכבדך כי תחבקנה""SALSELEHAH U'SEROMEMEKA, TECHABEDCHA KI SECHABKENAH"- "Caress it (i.e. delve into and unearth its (the Torah's) hidden treasures — Rashi to Rosh Hashanah 26b) and it will uplift you; it will bring you honor when you embrace it" (Mishlei 4:8).

7)[line 28]אמר (ליה) [לה] קא חזית דלא מקבל מרותAMAR (LEI) [LAH] KA CHAZIS D'LO MEKABEL MARUS- you (my wife) see that he does not recognize [my] authority (see Girsa section #1)

8)[line 31]לגרמיה הוא דעבדL'GARMEI HU D'AVAD- (a) he did it according to his own opinion, i.e. no other sages rule this way (RASHI); (b) he said Birkas ha'Mazon for himself (and not for Yanai and those assembled, who were Sadducees)

9)[line 33]צירTZIR- fish brine

10)[line 34]גרוגרתGROGERES- a dry fig


11)[line 13]הרוגי ביתרHARUGEI BEISAR

(a)At the time of the Churban of the second Beis ha'Mikdash (70 CE), Yerushalayim was destroyed and razed to the ground. The Roman Tenth Legion was garrisoned there following its destruction. Emperor Hadrian (who reigned from 117 - 138 CE) founded a new pagan city on the site of Yerushalayim, naming it Aelia Capitolina; Aelia in honor of his own name Publius Aelius Hadrianus, and Capitolina in honor of Jupiter, whose temple in Rome was on the Capitolene hill. At the site of the Beis ha'Mikdash, he erected a new temple to Jupiter. According to the Roman historian Dio Cassius, this was the cause of the revolt of Bar Kochva (132 - 135 CE). However, this could have not been the main cause of the revolt, since no reference to it is made in the Jewish sources. There are references to a number of commandments whose observance was prohibited by the Romans; e.g. Shabbos, circumcision, family purity and Keri'as Shema. All of these decrees brought on the revolt of Bar Kochva (in about 3883/123 CE), which lasted for nine years.

(b)At first the revolt began when Jews refused to yield to the decrees. They hid in caves and other secret places. (The Chazan Caves, one of these hideouts, can be visited today.) When discovered and raided by the Romans they resisted with great courage and often with great success. Before long, the attacked became attackers, striking out at the Roman troops. At this time, a leader appeared who was a military genius, Shimon bar Koziva. Rebbi Akiva felt that he was great enough to be Mashi'ach and called him Bar Kochva, "son of the star," an allusion to the verse, "Darach Kochav mi'Yakov," "A star shall go forth from Yakov" (Bamidbar 24:17). The "star" of the verse is an allusion to the Mashi'ach.

(c)Bar Kochva succeeded in organizing nets of resistance into an army and gradually pushed the Roman troops out of one position after another. The Tenth Legion was evacuated and withdrew to Caesarea. At this point a period of independent Jewish sovereignty began in Eretz Yisrael, which the Gemara refers to as the Kingdom of Bar Koziva, which lasted for two and a half years (Sanhedrin 97b). Jews all over the world, and other nations, too, were showing evidence of great hostility to the Romans.

(d)Sixty years earlier, at the time of the Churban, the Romans required three legions for the conquest of Yerushalayim. At the time of Bar Kochva, the Romans brought in six legions, besides the legions that were already there, and further detachments of cavalry and infantry. [It seems that one of the reasons for this greater need of military strength was that the Jews were unified, in contrast to the times of the Churban when the Jews were fragmented into opposing groups and sects — Editors note.]

(e)Despite the enormous size of their army, the Romans were unwilling to face Bar Kochva's troops in full battle. They proceeded slowly, attacking isolated localities and interfering with food supplies. When the Twenty-second Legion advanced too deeply and too quickly into Jewish territory, it was totally destroyed. It was never reconstituted, and forever after was omitted from the list of units in the Roman army.

(f)After approximately twelve months of warfare, the Romans started to advance on the Jewish positions. Bar Kochva and his troops withdrew to Beisar, a large city to the southwest of Yerushalayim, where the fighting continued for some three and a half years. Eventually, Bar Kochva accepted a slanderous accusation against his uncle, the sage Rebbi Elazar ha'Moda'i, who had been praying all along for the salvation of Beisar, and killed him in a fit of rage. Afterwards, Beisar fell to the Romans, and Bar Kochva was slain. (YERUSHALMI Ta'anis 4:5)

(g)The blood of the men, women and children killed is said to have flowed into the Mediterranean Sea, which was a distance of one Mil away (Gitin 57a; according to Eichah Rabah 2:4 four Mil; alt. 40 Mil). The Gemara (ibid.) records that the Nochrim in the neighboring towns did not need to fertilize their vineyards for seven years due to the quantity of blood that flowed into the ground.

(h)At first, the Roman Government did not let the Jews bury the bodies. One emperor is said to have fenced in his vineyard with the dead bodies (Eichah Raba 2:4). After quite some time, the next emperor allowed the bodies to be buried. It was seen as a sign of favor from HaSh-m that the Romans changed their minds, and that the bodies did not decompose before they were buried. The Chachamim established the Berachah of ha'Tov veha'Metiv to commemorate the miracles.

(i)After the revolt was crushed, no Jews were allowed to live in Yerushalayim for 500 years. The rulers killed any Jew who set foot in the city. The fall of the Beis ha'Mikdash sixty-three years earlier triggered the destruction of Yerushalayim; the fall of Beisar triggered the destruction of Eretz Yisrael. Nevertheless, Jews always remained in Eretz Yisrael. (From History of the Jewish People/From Yavneh to Pumbedisa, Artscroll Publishers, Brooklyn, New York, 1986, by Meir Holder)

12)[line 20]מתחיל בנחמה ומסיים בנחמהMASCHIL B'NECHAMAH U'MESAYEM B'NECHAMAH- he begins with Rachem (or Nachmeinu) and concludes with the Berachah of Boneh Yerushalayim

13)[line 43]"כבואכם העיר כן תמצאון אתו, בטרם יעלה הבמתה לאכל, כי לא יאכל העם עד באו, כי הוא יברך הזבח אחרי כן יאכלו הקראים; [ועתה עלו כי אתו כהיום תמצאון אתו]""K'VO'ACHEM HA'IR KEN TIMTZE'UN OSO, B'TEREM YA'ALEH HA'BAMASAH LE'ECHOL, KI LO YOCHAL HA'AM AD BO'O, KI HU YEVARECH HA'ZEVACH ACHAREI CHEN YOCHLU HA'KERU'IM; [V'ATAH ALU, KI OSO K'HA'YOM TIMTZE'UN OSO]" - "As you enter the city you will find him, before he ascends to the Bamah to eat; for the people will not eat before he arrives, because he blesses the offering, and it is only afterwards that the invited guests eat. [And now go up, for you will find him as surely as it is day]" (Shmuel I 9:13) (SHMUEL, SHAUL, AND THE LOST DONKEYS)

(a)The verses relate that some donkeys belonging to Kish, an important dignitary in the tribe of Binyamin, became lost, and how Kish instructed his son Shaul to take one of the servants and go look for the lost animals.

(b)They searched far and wide, but there was no sign of the missing donkeys. Eventually, Shaul suggested that they give up the search for the donkeys and return home before his father would give up worrying about the donkeys and begin worrying about them. The servant pointed out, however, that since they were in the vicinity of Shmuel ha'Navi (Ramot), it would be worthwhile to pay him a visit in the hope that he would be able to them the whereabouts of the missing donkeys.

(c)Initially, Shaul was reluctant to follow this suggestion, since one generally did not visit such an important person empty-handed, and he had nothing on him to give the Navi. He relented, however, when the servant pointed out that he had a small amount of money with him, which he was prepared to give the Navi in exchange for information leading to the whereabouts of the lost donkeys.

(d)The two of them were climbing the path leading to the city when they met some young women who were leaving the city on their way to draw water from the local well. They asked the women whether the Seer (which is what they called the Navi in those days) was in town, to which the women replied that if they would hurry they would still catch him before he left for the Bamah to "bless the local sacrifice." Bamos had become permitted at the time of the recent destruction of the Mishkan in Shiloh.

(e)Since Shaul's question required no more than a simple "yes" or "no," Chazal attribute the girls' lengthy reply either to the fact that women tend to be talkative, or to Shaul's exceptional good looks (which tempted them to give a lengthy answer so that they could gaze at him a little longer).

(f)Indeed, they found Shmuel in the city, who had been told in advance of their arrival. Inviting them both to join the thirty guests who were participating in the Korban, he sat them at the head of the table and fed them the chest and right shoulder which were permitted to a non-Kohen on a Bamah Ketanah.

(g)The Navi informed Shaul that the donkeys had been found, and the following morning, before sending them home, he took out a jar of anointing oil and anointed Shaul king of Yisrael, who had been Divinely chosen to become Yisrael's first king.

14)[line 44]וכל כך למהV'CHOL KACH LAMA?- Why [did the girls speak to Shaul and his attendant] to such an extent?

15)[line 44]דברניותDABRANIYOS- talkative women

16)[line 45]כמלא נימאK'MELO NIMA- a hair's breadth

17)[line 49]דיינךDAYANCHA- your Judge (Who administers strict justice, which is alluded to by the Holy Name "El-okim," see Rashi to Berachos 60b DH Elokim)