BAVA METZIA 71 (1 Iyar 5784) - Dedicated l'Iluy Nishmas Reb Yakov Yosef ben Nosson Neta Friedman Z'L, in honor of his Yahrzeit. May Jack Friedman's exceptional Ahavas Yisrael and Ahavas Chesed be a Zechus for bringing peace and joy to his children, grandchildren and all of Klal Yisrael. Dedicated by his sons, Ari (Lawrence NY) and David (Jerusalem).

[71a - 51 lines; 71b - 45 lines]

1)[line 13] SAMYUS EINEIHEM- [figurative] blindness

2)[line 14] ADAM KOREI L'CHAVEIRO RASHA- if someone called a fellow Jew a Rasha (a wicked person)

3)[line 14] YORED IMO L'CHAYAV- (a) he will retaliate by routinely fighting with the person who called him a Rasha, as if he wounded him or plotted to murder him (RASHI, 1st explanation); (b) he (the offended party) is permitted to use every effort to cause that person a loss and to annoy him at every opportunity (RASHI, 2nd explanation and to Kidushin 28a, however, Rashi here questions this explanation)

4)[line 15]LAVLAR- a scribe

5)[line 15]KULMUS- a stylus or quill

6)[line 16]DEYO- ink

7)[line 22] NECHASAV MISMOTETIN- he loses his assets

8)[line 25]"... , () [] ?""... LAMAH SABIT BOGEDIM, TACHARISH (K'VALA) [B'VALA] RASHA TZADIK MIMENU?"- "[Your eyes are too pure to behold evil, You cannot look upon iniquity.] Why, then, do You look upon those who deal treacherously, and are silent when the wicked man swallows up the man more righteous than he?" (Chabakuk 1:13).

9a)[line 27] TZADIK MIMENU- a person more righteous that the wicked man, but not at all flawless

b)[line 27] TZADIK GAMUR- a perfectly righteous person

10)[line 28] GER TZEDEK- a convert who accepts upon himself all of the Mitzvos


(a)The Torah states (Vayikra 25:47-55) that a Jewish man can sell himself as a slave to a Nochri through Kinyan Kesef, by the Nochri paying money to the Jewish man. During his term as a slave, his master must support his family (Kidushin 22a). The Jew must be set free in the Yovel year (like every other Eved Ivri), as the Torah states (Vayikra ibid.). Some Tana'im maintain that he also must be set free after six years of servitude, like an Eved Ivri who is sold to a Jew (Kidushin 15b).

(b)It is a Mitzvah for the Jewish slave's relatives to redeem him from servitude, so that he does not learn Nochri ways from his master and forget his people and Maker. When they redeem him, they must calculate the outstanding debt by subtracting the amount of money for the years that he served his master from the sum that the master paid for him. It is also possible for the Eved Ivri himself, or for any other Jew, to redeem the Eved Ivri.

(c)The greatest disgrace is when a poverty-stricken Jew sells himself not only to a Nochri, but to an " " "Eker Mishpachas Ger" - to perform menial tasks for a house of idol worship (but not, Chas v'Shalom, to serve the idol). Idol worship is called Eker in this verse because Sofo l'Aker (it is destined to be uprooted).

(d)Our Gemara concludes that the Beraisa rules that a convert may buy a Jewish man as an Eved Ivri, but he must follow the Halachos of a Nochri who buys an Eved Ivri (at least in one respect). If the convert dies, the Eved Ivri goes free, which is the Halachah with respect to a Nochri. He does not work for the son of the convert, as does an Eved Ivri sold to a Jew.

12)[line 29] GER TOSHAV- A Ben Noach who accepts upon himself to fulfill the seven Noachide laws (This is the opinion of the Chachamim in Avodah Zarah 64b. Other Tana'im define Ger Toshav differently, ibid.)

13)[line 30]" , [ ]""V'CHI YAMUCH ACHICHA IMACH, VNIMKAR LACH; [LO SA'AVOD BO AVODAS AVED]"- "And if your brother who dwells with you becomes poor, and is sold to you; [you shall not compel him to serve as a slave]" (Vayikra 25:39) - This section deals with a Jew who buys a Jewish slave (verses 39 - 43).

14)[line 30]"[ ,] ""[V'CHI SASIG YAD GER V'SOSHAV IMACH U'MACH ACHICHA IMO,] V'NIMKAR L'GER TOSHAV IMACH O L'EKER MISHPACHAS GER"- "[And if a sojourner or stranger becomes rich [by living] with you, and your brother who dwells with him becomes poor,] and sells himself to the stranger or sojourner [who lives] with you, or to an idol of the stranger's family" (Vayikra 25:47) - This section (verses 47 - 55) deals with a Nochri who buys a Jewish slave. The Gemara (line 32) interprets the end of this verse, "l'Eker Mishpachas Ger," to mean that the Eved Ivri is purchased to perform menial tasks for a house of idol worship (but not, Chas v'Shalom, to serve the idol). Idol worship is called Eker in this verse because Sofo l'Aker (it is destined to be uprooted).

15)[line 32] HA'NIMKAR LA'AVODAS KOCHACHIM ATZMAH- sold to perform menial tasks for a house of idol worship (but not, Chas v'Shalom, to serve the idol)

16)[line 33] EVED IVRI - a Jewish slave

(a)There are two ways that a Jewish man can be bought as a slave by another Jew. Either he may sell himself because he is destitute, or he may be sold by Beis Din to pay back a theft. During his term as a slave, his master must support his family. (Kidushin 22b) The master may not make his Eved Ivri do disgraceful work for him, nor may he treat him as one normally treats a slave. For example, if the master only has one pillow, he must give it to his Eved Ivri rather than keep it for himself. (Kidushin 20a)

(b)If the slave was married before he was sold, the master has the right to give him a Nochri maidservant to bear him children who will become the slaves of the master. (Shemos 21:4) (One who is not an Eved Ivri is forbidden to have relations with a maidservant.)

(c)An Eved Ivri is obligated to work for his master for only six years (Shemos 21:2) or until the Yovel year (see next entry), whichever comes first. (Kidushin 14b, 16a) At any time during his term, he may go free if he or someone else pays his master the money remaining from the sum that the master paid for him, prorated to the amount of time that he worked. If at the termination of six years he expresses his desire to continue life as a slave, the master takes the slave to Beis Din, and stands the slave near a doorpost and pierces his right ear and the door with an awl. This is known as Retzi'ah, and an Eved Ivri upon whom this is performed is called a "Nirtza." A Nirtza slave must continue to serve his master until the Yovel year (ibid. 21:6) or until his master dies. Whenever an Eved Ivri goes free, under most circumstances his master must give him monetary gifts valued at 15, 30 or 50 Sela'im, according to the various opinions (Kidushin 17a); this is known as Ha'anakah. (Devarim 15:14).

17)[line 34]"... ...""... V'SHAV EL MISHPACHTO..."- "[And then shall he depart from you, both he and his children with him,] and shall return to his own family, [and to the possessions of his fathers shall he return]" (Vayikra 25:41).

18)[line 36]GEMIREI- we have a tradition

19)[line 36] D'MIKNI KANI- one who can be bought [as an Eved Ivri] may buy [a fellow Jew as an Eved Ivri]

20)[line 37]HA'NIRTZA - the Eved Ivri whose ear is pierced

See above, entry #16:c.

21)[line 43]ARMALTA- a widow

22)[line 43] LO SERABEI CHALBA- may not raise a dog

23)[line 43] V'LO SISHREI BAR BEI RAV B'USHPIZA- may not take a Yeshiva student as a boarder

24)[line 44] D'MASRICH BAH- it follows her around

25)[line 45]MIRTESA- she is worried [about her reputation and she will not sin with it]

26)[line 45] D'KI SHADYA LEI UMTZA- when she throws raw meat to a dog, [it follows her around]

27)[line 47]" , , . , ""V'CHI YAMUCH ACHICHA U'MATAH YADO IMACH, V'HECHEZAKTA BO, GER V'SOSHAV VA'CHAI IMACH. AL TIKACH ME'ITO NESHECH V'SARBIS V'YAREISA ME'ELOKECHA, V'CHEI ACHICHA IMACH"- "And if your brother has become poor, and his means fail with you, then you shall relieve him, although he may be a convert or a sojourner, that he may live with you. Take no interest from him, or increase; but fear your Elokim; that your brother may live with you" (Vayikra 25:35-36).

28)[last line]AREV- a guarantor [for a loan with Ribis]


29)[line 1] ?AREV L'MAN?- A guarantor for whom? i.e. for which creditor am I permitted to be a guarantor for a loan with Ribis?

30)[line 15] , V'IM HE'EMIDO ETZEL NOCHRI, MUTAR- (lit. but if he stood him next to the Nochri) but if it was done in the presence of the Nochri [and the Nochri made him a Shali'ach], it is permitted


(a)It is possible to make a Shali'ach (an agent) to accomplish a task such that any consequences of the task are attributed to the one who sent him. For example, a Shali'ach can accomplish a Kinyan on behalf of the one who sent him. (Kinyan means, roughly, acquiring or relinquishing an acquisition. The word "Kinyan" connotes a change of ownership or status, such as giving or receiving sales, gifts, Gitin and Kidushin.) The Mishnah (Berachos 34b) states, "Shelucho Shel Adam Kemoso," i.e. [the act performed by] the Shali'ach of a person is like [an act performed by the person] himself. Sources for this law are cited in Kidushin 41.

(b)The Gemara (Kidushin 41b) learns from verse written with regard to Terumah, " " "Ken Tarimu Gam Atem" - "Thus you also shall lift up" (Bamidbar 18:28), that a Nochri may not be a Shali'ach for a Jew. The extra language of the verse can be interpreted as "like you," and it teaches that a Jew's Shali'ach must be a "Ben Beris," - "a member of the Covenant," like him.

32)[line 28] KA GAMIR V'YAHIV- he made up his mind and gave it (the money, on interest)

33)[line 31] BERUSA HI- it is an "outside," rejected opinion (alt. Bedusa Hi - it is fiction, i.e. a mistake)

34a)[line 32]"", " ""ATEM," "GAM ATEM"- the Torah could have written "Atem," but added the word "Gam" (Bamidbar 18:28) - see next entry

b)[ ] ...""[KEN TARIMU] GAM ATEM..."- "[Thus] you also [shall lift up an offering to HaSh-m from all your tithes which you receive from the people of Yisrael; and you shall give from it HaSh-m's gift to Aharon the Kohen]" (Bamidbar 18:28).


(a)When a person buys an object, he must make a Ma'aseh Kinyan (a formal Halachically-binding act denoting the change in status) in order to finalize his acquisition of the object. This act may be performed using a Shali'ach (agent), in which case the Shaliach performs the Kinyan instead of the person himself. When the acquisition of a certain object is unquestionably beneficial for a person, someone else may acquire it for that person as if he were his Shali'ach, even though he was not actually appointed as a Shali'ach to do so. A Kiyan accomplished in such a manner by an unappointed Shali'ach is known as "Zechiyah," or "Zachin l'Adam she'Lo b'Fanav." (See Background to Bava Metzia 10:6)

(b)The Rishonim argue as to how "Zachin" works. Some state that "Anan Sahadei" (lit. "we are witnesses," - i.e. it is as clear to us as if he stated it himself) that the recipient would have appointed the person to be his Shali'ach had he been aware that he had the opportunity to do so. Therefore, it is as if he were an appointed Shali'ach. (RASHI to Gitin 9b DH Yachzor, TOSFOS to Kesuvos 11a DH Matbilin) Other Rishonim claim that "Zachin" does not work through the vehicle of Shelichus at all, since it also can acquire objects for minors who Halachically cannot appoint Shelichim. Rather, they maintain that the Torah created a new form of Kinyan called "Zechiyah" that allows one person to acquire an object for another person in such cases (RASHBA and RITVA to Kidushin 23b - see Insights there; RAN to Kidushin 42a; this may be an argument among the Tana'im in Bava Basra 156b).

(c)According to the first opinion mentioned above (b), it was the Rabanan who instituted that a Katan can acquire objects through Zechiyah. According to the second opinion, the Torah recognized a form of Kinyan called Zechiyah, which can acquire objects even for a Katan. This argument is expressed in our Sugya in the form of variant Girsa'os. According to the first opinion, the proper reading of our Gemara is that a Katan has "Zechiyah mid'Rabanan" (as the texts read in the printed Gemaros). According to the second opinion, the proper Girsa is just "Zechiyah" (not mid'Rabanan), meaning that a Katan has Zechiyah mid'Oraisa (TOSFOS to Kesuvos 11a DH Matbilin).

(d)Our Gemara concludes that not only can a Nochri not appoint a Shali'ach to perform a Kinyan on his behalf, he cannot even acquire an object through Zechiyah, not mid'Oraisa and not mid'Rabanan.