More Discussions for this daf
1. betrothal at 3 years old 2. Artificial Insemination. 3. Fetus and Aveilus
4. Marriage of Minors 5. Age of a mekudeshet 6. רש״י ד״ה נוחל
7. רש״י ד״ה מן הפסולין

Howard Silverman asked:

Why does the Talmud say that a girl can be betrothed by intercourse at 3 years and one day. Obviously no one took this literally - but why age 3? How are we to interpret this?

thank you

Howard Silverman

The Kollel replies:

The Talmud addresses the earliest age at which marital relations can take place, both for a male and for a female. The Talmud, a book of law, investigates this question in order to determine the law with regard to a number of matters. For example, at what age does the marriage bond take effect such that it is fully binding (so that a divorce would be needed to break it), and at what age would the marriage bond not be binding, such that no bill of divorce would be needed? The Talmud discusses theoretical cases in order to arrive at the clarification of the law. Another legal ramification of this investigation exists in a case in which a girl is raped; is she permitted, when she grows up, to marry a high priest (who is permitted to marry only a virgin)?

In practice, of course, the Talmud condemns marriage to minors, and the Code of Jewish Law, based on the Talmud, writes that it is prohibited to marry a minor.

Y. Shaw