MEGILAH 26 (10 Av) - Dedicated by Rabbi Dr. Eli Turkel of Ra'anana, Israel, in memory of his father, Reb Yisrael Shimon ben Shlomo ha'Levi Turkel. Isi Turkel, as he was known, loved Torah and worked to support it literally with his last ounce of strength. He passed away on 10 Av 5740.
MEGILAH 26 - Dedicated l'Iluy Nishmas HaRav Ze'ev Wolf Rosengarten of Zurich, Switzerland, a person of "Sheleimus" in every way, who passed away on 14 Adar 5760. Dedicated in honor of his Yahrzeit by his nephew and Talmid, Eli Rosengarten of Zurich.

[26a - 44 lines; 26b - 50 lines]

1)[line 5]וכן במותריהןV'CHEN B'MOSAREIHEN- and the same is done with the remaining (money from the sale)

2)[line 8]סתומתאהSETUMTA'AH- anonymously (the Mishnah does not say who the author is)

3)[line 10]ובמעמדותMA'AMADOS

(a)The Mishnah in Ta'anis 26a states that the early prophets divided Bnei Yisrael into twenty-four groups, or Ma'amados. Each Ma'amad consisted of Kohanim, Leviyim and Yisraelim, and it was their duty to make sure that the Korbanos were sacrificed properly. The Ma'amados worked in a rotation and took responsibility for the Korbanos of one week, twice each year.

(b)When each Ma'amad's turn arrived, the Kohanim and Leviyim would travel to the Beis ha'Mikdash to do the divine service. Some of the Yisraelim traveled to Yerushalayim, also, but most of them stayed in their own cities. It was the job of the Yisraelim to pray that the week's Korbanos should be accepted by HaSh-m. They gathered together to fast, read special portions of the Torah and recite the special Shemoneh Esreh of Ta'aniyos (see Background to Shabbos 24:1).

4)[line 11]אקראי בעלמאAKRAI B'ALMA- it is only a chance occurrence

5)[line 20]טורסייםTURSIYIM- (a) bronze-workers (Aruch, Rashi to Chulin 57b) who had their own synagogue because other people could not stand their company because of their stench (Tosfos Avodah Zarah 17b DH Raban Shel Tarsiyim Ani); (b) Tarsians, people who came from Tarsus (Tosfos Chulin 57b DH Matlis Shel Tarsiyim); (c) weavers, weavers of metallic thread, artistic weavers (Rashi to Avodah Zarah 17b)

6)[line 24]בנגעיםNEGA'IM (NIG'EI BATIM)

(a)The marks of Tzara'as for houses consist of intense green or intense red streaks or spots that are at least the size of two Gerisin (a Gris is a Cilician bean, approximately the size of a dime) (Nega'im 12:3). If Tzara'as is found on the walls of a house, it is put into quarantine by a Kohen for a week. Before the Kohen puts the house into quarantine, he commands that the house be emptied of its contents to prevent its utensils from becoming Tamei.

(b)The Torah states (Vayikra 14:39) "v'Shav ha'Kohen," to prescribe that the Kohen return six days later to check the house. If the Tzara'as has spread, one must remove (Choletz) the stones with Tzara'as from the house, scrape off the surrounding plaster, insert new stones and re-plaster the entire house. The house is then put into quarantine for another week. If the Tzara'as returns to the house during the following week, the owner must dismantle (Notetz) the entire house (Vayikra 14:45). The stones from the house must be taken out of the city, and they remain Asur b'Hana'ah forever.

(c)On the other hand, if the Tzara'as did not change after the first week, the Kohen leaves it as is and returns again six days later. The verse states (Vayikra 14:44) "u'Va Ha'kohen," which means "if, when the Kohen comes back to the house to inspect it a second time, he finds that the spot of Tzara'as has spread, the house is Tamei." Chazal teach that this verse is referring to a spot of Tzara'as that does not spread during its first week. The Kohen "comes back to the house" after a second week to see whether the spot has spread, remains, or has disappeared. If the Tzara'as has either spread or remained, one must remove (Choletz) the stones with Tzara'as from the house, scrape off the surrounding plaster, insert new stones and re-plaster the entire house. The house is then put into quarantine for another week (Vayikra 14:40). If the Tzara'as returns to the house during the following week, the owner must dismantle (Notetz) the entire house (Vayikra 14:45). The stones from the house must be taken out of the city, and they remain Asur b'Hana'ah forever.

(d)Even though the words "v'Shav" and "u'Va" are not identical, they are referring to the same action; namely, the Kohen entering the house to inspect it. This relates the two verses to each other with a Gezerah Shavah. Just as the house is not dismantled if the Tzara'as spreads during the first week - unless the stones are scraped and the Tzara'as returned to the house after a week of quarantine - so, too, the house is not dismantled if the Tzara'as spread during the second week unless it returns to the house after the quarantine period that follows the scraping.

(e)If during one of the inspections at the end of the first or second week the Kohen finds that the Tzara'as has disappeared or diminished in intensity such that it can no longer be classified as a Nega, the location of the spot alone is scraped and the house is declared Tahor after the owner follows the procedure for being Metaher houses (see Background to Sukah 13:10:IV). (RAMBAM Hilchos Tum'as Tzara'as 15:2)

7a)[line 26]מקום מקדשMEKOM MIKDASH- the place of the Beis ha'Mikdash

b)[line 29]מקום מקודשMAKOM MEKUDASH- any holy place (including a Beis ha'Keneses)

8)[line 33]הלשכותLESHACHOS- chambers (of the Beis ha'Mikdash)

9)[line 34]והעזרותAZAROS- open areas (lit. courtyards) of the Beis ha'Mikdash

10)[line 34]אולםULAM- the Hall (which opened into the Heichal); the largest and most ornate structure in the Beis ha'Mikdash, which was as high as a 17-story building

11)[line 35]והיכלHEICHAL- the Sanctuary, inside of which was the Menorah, the Shulchan for the Lechem ha'Panim, and the Mizbe'ach for the Ketores

12)[line 38]"חופף עליו כל היום [ובין כתפיו שכן]""CHOFEF ALAV KOL HA'YOM [U'VEIN KESEIFAV SHACHEN]" - " "[To Binyamin he said: The beloved of HaSh-m, He will dwell in safety over him,] He hovers over him all day long [and dwells between his shoulders.]" (Devarim 33:12) - According to the simple meaning of the verse, HaSh-m hovers over Binyamin all day long. The Gemara, however, interprets this verse to mean that Binyamin hovers over the strip of land that belonged to Yehudah on which the Mizbe'ach was built, longing to include it in his territory. (BINYAMIN AND THE SHECHINAH)

(a)Binyamin's special connection with the Shechinah and the cause and effect of this special merit are expressed in a number of sources:

1.After Binyamin's death, his body was not subject to decomposition, as the Torah writes "Yishkon la'Vetach Alav" (Bava Basra 17a).

2.A strip of land went from Yehudah's portion into Binyamin's portion, on which the Mizbe'ach was built. Binyamin grieved over this every day, wishing he could subsume it. In return for his strong desire, he merited to host the Shechinah, as the Torah writes, "u'Vein Keseifav Shachen" (here, and Yoma 12a).

3."Chofef Alav" refers to the first Beis ha'Mikdash,"Kol ha'Yom" to the second, and "u'Vein Keseifav Shachen" to the days of Mashi'ach (and the third Beis ha'Mikdash) ( Zevachim 118b).

4.Rebbi says: "Chofef Alav" refers to this world, "Kol ha'Yom" to the days of Mashi'ach, and "u'Vein Keseifav Shachen" to the World to Come (ibid.).

5.In three locations the Shechinah rested in Yisrael: in the Mishkan in Shiloh, the Mishkan in Nov and Givon, and in the Beis ha'Mikdash in Yerushalayim. All of these were situated in the portion of Binyamin (ibid.).

6.When Yisrael stood on the shore of the Yam Suf, the tribes were arguing about who would be the first to enter the water. "This one said, 'I will go first!' and this one said, 'I will go first!' Meanwhile, the tribe of Binyamin jumped in." That is why they merited to serve as hosts to the Shechinah, as the Torah writes, "u'Vein Keseifav Shachen" (Sotah 37a).

7.When David and Shmuel were searching for the location of the Beis ha'Mikdash, they initially wanted to build it in Ein Itam (the highest spot in Yerushalayim), but, based on the verse, "u'Vein Keseifav Shachen," they decided to build it slightly lower down (see Rashi on the Chumash). Alternatively, they went down a little because of the tradition that the Sanhedrin will sit in the portion of Yehudah and the Shechinah, in the portion of Binyamin. Had the Beis ha'Mikdash been built higher up, the distance between the two would have been excessive, so they built it a little lower (Zevachim 54b).

8.The Beraisa asks why Binyamin merited that the Shechinah rests in his portion. The Tana answers that it is because all of the other tribes were born in Chutz la'Aretz, while he was born in Eretz Yisrael (Sifri).

9.Another reason offered by the Sifri is that Binyamin did not participate in the sale of Yosef.

10.A final reason cited by the Torah Temimah, with reference to the verse in Vayishlach ("And Yakov was left alove") is that Binyamin was the one brother who did not prostrate himself to Esav (or, subsequently, to anybody else).

13)[line 36]אושפיזכן לשכינהUSHPIZCHAN LA'SHECHINAH- a host for the Almighty

14)[line 39]בזרועBI'ZRO'A- by force

15)[line 39]למישבק אינשL'MISHBAK INISH- for a person to leave behind

16)[line 39]גולפאGULFA- earthenware pitcher

17)[line 39]ומשכאMASHCHA- the hide (of an animal that he slaughters and eats)


18)[line 2]תילאTILA- mound (ruins)

19)[line 4]משבעה טובי העירSHIV'AH TUVEI HA'IR- the 7 counselors (lit. good ones) of the city

20)[line 7]ליבני וכשוריLIVNEI U'CHESHUREI- bricks and beams

21)[line 14]חלופה וזבונה שריCHALUFAH U'ZEVUNAH SHARI- if it (the synagogue) was exchanged or sold, it is permitted (for any use, since its sanctity was transferred off of it)

22)[line 14]אוגורה ומשכונה אסורOGURAH U'MASHKONAH ASUR- if it was rented to be used as collateral, it is prohibited (i.e. it keeps its sanctity)

23)[line 16]אוזופינהוOZOFINHU- they lent them

24)[line 18]הזמנה מילתא היאHAZMANAH MILSA HI

There is a disagreement as to whether designating an object for a purpose of Kedushah renders it unfit for secular use. Abaye is of the opinion that Hazmanah is enough. Others rule that an action (e.g. wrapping Tefilin in the scarf) must be done to the object before it is unfit for secular use.

25)[line 20]כטווי לאריגK'TAVUY L'ARIG- like (thread) spun, to be woven

26a)[line 25]תשמישי מצוהTASHMISHEI MITZVAH- articles used to perform Mitzvos

b)[line 26]תשמישי קדושהTASHMISHEI KEDUSHAH- articles which serve (e.g. hold) sacred writings

27)[line 28]דלוסקמיDELUSKAMEI- a sack in which sacred books are put

28)[line 29]ונרתיקNARTIK- a short case

29)[line 31]כורסיאKURSAYA- a wooden podium

30)[line 31]תשמיש דתשמישTASHMISH D'TASHMISH- something which serves Tashmishei Kedushah (see above, entry #26b)

31)[line 33]פריסאPERISA- a curtain inside the ark; alternatively, a cover for a Sefer (Aruch)

32)[line 34]דעייפי ליהD'AIFEI LEI- (sometimes) they fold it (under the Sefer Torah)

33)[line 35]האי תיבותא דאירפטHAI TEIVUSA D'IRPAT- this ark which has come apart

34)[line 36]תיבה זוטרתי שריTEIVAH ZUTARTI SHARI- to make it a small ark is permitted

35)[line 37]פריסא לספריPERISA L'SIFREI- a curtain inside an ark of (or a cover for - Aruch) a Sefer Torah

36)[line 37]לחומשיןCHUMASHIN- individual volumes of the 5 books of the Torah

37)[line 37]זבילי דחומשיZEVILEI D'CHUMSHEI- sacks for Chumashim

38)[line 38]וקמטרי דספריKAMTEREI D'SIFREI- (O.F. escrin) chests of Sefarim

39)[line 39]לנטורי בעלמאL'NATUREI B'ALMA- just to guard

40)[line 40]אידרונאIDRONA- a room in which a corpse is stored before burial

41)[line 40]דהוה מחית ביה מתD'HAVAH MACHIS BEI MES- that a corpse was resting in

42)[line 41]דלו תיבותא אותבוהDALU TEIVUSA, OSVUHA- lift the ark, place it there

43)[line 42]כלי עץ העשוי לנחתKLI ETZ HE'ASUY L'NACHAS - a wooden vessel made to remain stationary

(a)The Torah says that wooden utensils can become Tamei if they are touched by a person or object that is an Av ha'Tum'ah, of if they are under the same Ohel as a dead person (Vayikra 11:32, Bamidbar 31:20). However, since the Torah compares a wooden object that becomes Tamei to a sack ("Sak"), the wooden object must have certain qualities in common with a sack in order to become Tamei.

(b)Among these qualities are:

1.The object must have a receptacle, i.e. an area in which it can contain other objects, as opposed to a flat board.

2.It must not be large enough to hold 40 Se'ah, for if it is that large it cannot be transported when filled, as opposed to a sack, which is made to be transported either empty or full.

3.It must be an object that is sometimes transported, and not one that is always stationary. If it is left stationary, it is called a "Kli he'Asuy l'Nachas" and is not Mekabel Tum'ah.

44)[line 43]וחוצץCHOTZETZ- obstructs

45)[line 46]תכריכיןTACHRICHIN- shrouds