THE NEW YEAR FOR ESROGIM (cont.)
Answer: Rabah bar. R. Huna's statement should read that even though R. Gamliel ruled that Esrog follows its harvesting for Ma'aser (like vegetables), its new year begins in Shevat.
Question: Why does this Tosefta speak of the third year entering the fourth, while the other one (on 12b) speaks of the second entering the third?
Answer: It incidentally teaches us that since Esrog trees don't react well to being handled during Shevi'is, it takes three years for fruit to be produced afterwards.
Question (R. Yochanan): When is the new year for Esrogim?
Answer (R. Yanai): Shevat.
Question (R. Yochanan): Does this mean the lunar month of Shevat, or Shevat of the solar season (thirty days following the Teves solstice)?
Answer (R. Yanai): The lunar month of Shevat.
Question (Rava/ R. Yochanan): In a leap year, is the new year Shevat or the month preceding the final month i.e. Adar Rishon?
Answer (R. Nachman/ R. Yanai): We follow the majority of years (the month called Shevat).
SIXTH AND SEVENTH YEAR ESROGIM
(Rabah): A sixth-year Esrog which was picked in the Shemitah year is exempt from Ma'aser and Biyur (removal of Shmitah produce).
A seventh-year Esrog which was picked in the eighth year is exempt from Ma'aser and subject to Biyur.
Question (Abaye): The second rule takes a stringent approach; but the rule that the first case is exempt from Biyur must be because we follow the sprouting - if so, it should be subject to Ma'aser?
Answer (Rabah): Since everyone handles it in the Shemitah year (and it is effectively ownerless), it is not subject to Ma'aser.
(R. Hamnuna): A sixth-year Esrog which was picked in the Shemitah year is fully rated as sixth-year fruit.
A seventh-year Esrog which was picked in the eighth year is rated as seventh year (Shemitah) fruit.
Question: A Beraisa contradicts both Rabah and R. Hamnuna:
(R. Shimon ben Yehudah citing R. Shimon): A sixth-year Esrog which was picked in the Shemitah year is exempt from both Ma'aser and Biyur.
Produce is only subject to Ma'aser if it both grew and was picked in a Ma'aser year.
A seventh-year Esrog which was picked in the eighth year is exempt from both Ma'aser and Biyur.
Produce is only subject to Biyur if it both grew and was picked in the Shemitah year.
The first part contradicts R. Hamnuna, and the second part contradicts both!?
Answer: These rules are a dispute between Tana'im in a Beraisa:
(R. Yosi): Avtulmos testified that we follow the harvesting of Esrogim for Ma'aser.
The Rabbis voted that we follow the harvesting for both Ma'aser and Shemitah.
Question: Who mentioned anything about Shemitah?
Answer: Emend it to read that Avtulmos also said that we follow the sprouting of Esrogim for Shemitah (and Rabah and R. Hamnuna follow this view).
(R. Yochanan and Resh Lakish): A sixth-year Esrog which was picked in the Shemitah year is fully rated as sixth-year fruit.
(Ravin citing R. Yochanan): Even an Esrog that grew mostly in the seventh year is rated as sixth-year fruit and is Tevel.
DETERMINING TO WHICH YEAR TREES BELONG
(Rabanan): A tree whose fruit sprouted before the 15th of Shevat has Ma'aser taken according to the previous year; otherwise, it is taken according to the present year.
(R. Nechemiah): This only holds true for a tree that gives two broods a year.
Question: Birds, not trees, produce broods!?
Answer: It means like two broods in that the fruit does not all ripen at once.
But a tree that gives one brood (such as dates, olives, and carobs) has Ma'aser taken according to when they are picked (even if they sprouted before the 15th of Shevat).
(R. Yochanan): With carob trees, people customarily follow R. Nechemiah (following when the carobs are picked).
Question (Resh Lakish to R. Yochanan): We see that even trees whose fruit ripen all at once follow the sprouting:
White figs have Shemitah laws in the second year of the Shemitah cycle (because they started growing three years ago.
(R. Yochanan): No answer.
Question (R. Aba haKohen): Why didn't R. Yochanan reply that he was quoting R. Nechemiah?
Answer (R. Yosi haKohen): Because Resh Lakish would protest that he can't abandon the Rabanan in favor of R. Nechemiah.
Question (R. Aba haKohen): Why didn't R. Yochanan say that he is simply reporting what people do, not authorizing it!?
Answer (R. Yosi haKohen): Because Resh Lakish would reply that one can't allow such a custom to take place in the face of a prohibition.
Question (R. Aba haKohen): Why didn't R. Yochanan say that Ma'aser for carob trees is only d'Rabanan anyway!?
"I wonder if Resh Lakish really asked this question to R. Yochanan."
Question: But he did ask it!?
Answer: R. Aba means that he wonders if R. Yochanan had no answer, or if he felt that it wasn't a question (because carobs are d'Rabanan).