SANHEDRIN 46 (9 Elul) - Dedicated by Elliot and Lori Linzer in honor of the Yahrzeit of Chana bas Mordechai Eliezer.

[46a - 41 lines; 46b - 58 lines]

1a)[line 1] HASHTA D'MIRCHAKEI ME'HADADEI- now that the Klal and the Prat are distant from each other (see Background to Sanhedrin 45:54-55 for the text of the verses)

b)[line 1] AHANI LI'REBUYEI AVODAS KOCHAVIM- [the derivation] is effective in including idol worship [in the penalty of hanging]

c)[line 2] D'DAMI LEI B'CHOL MILEI- for it is similar to blasphemy in all ways: (a) in that he has denied the essential tenet of Yahadus (RASHI); (b) additionally, both are punishable by Sekilah (RABEINU CHANANEL, YAD RAMAH)

2)[line 2] DARISH RIBUYEI U'MI'UTEI- interprets verses on the basis of Ribuyim (inclusions) and Mi'utim (exclusions) - see Background to Sanhedrin 45:56

3)[line 12] LI'ME'UTEI BEN SORER U'MOREH- to exclude a Ben Sorer u'Moreh - See Background to Sanhedrin 45:44. A Ben Sorer u'Moreh is not a full "Ish," for he is tried as a Ben Sorer u'Moreh only if he is still too young to father children (RASHI, based on 69a).

4)[line 16] EIN MI'UT ACHAR MI'UT ELA L'RABOS - Two Consecutive Exclusions Result in an Inclusion (MI'UT ACHAR MI'UT)

See Background to Sanhedrin 15:12.

5)[line 20] SHTEI AVEIROS- two different transgressions. In a capital case, the Dayanim are obligated by the Torah to search for a way to acquit the defendant. They search for reasons that the verses in the Torah discussing his particular transgression would not apply in his particular case, thus absolving him from the death penalty. Two defendants accused of two different crimes would need entirely different lines of reasoning, and, therefore, a Beis Din is prohibited to judge them both on the same day (RASHI to the Mishnah 45b, DH Ein Danin). The eighty witches tried by Shimon ben Shetach on one day were nonetheless deemed by the Chachamim of the Mishnah to be an exception to the rule; this is because some witches practiced the sorcery known as Ov, and some practiced Yid'oni, which are distinct prohibitions.

6a)[line 22] BAS KOHEN U'VO'ALAH

In most cases, the penalty for adultery with a married woman is death by Chenek for both participants. The daughter of a Kohen who commits adultery is punished with Sereifah (Vayikra 21:9), while her adulterer receives Chenek (Mishnah 84b). Rav Chisda explains that because their punishments are different, they may not be tried by the same Beis Din on the same day.


(a)If two witnesses testify to a crime or an event and a later set of witnesses contradict their testimony by saying that the crime or event did not take place exactly as the first set of witnesses testified, all of the witnesses are termed Edim Mukchashin (contradictory witnesses), and Beis Din cannot use either testimony.

(b)If, however, two witnesses testify to a crime or an event and a later set of witnesses disqualify that testimony by saying that the first set of witnesses were with them at a different location at the time that the first set of witnesses claim that the act took place, the first witnesses are termed Edim Zomimin (conspiring witnesses). The Torah commands that the second set of witnesses are believed, rather than the first. In general, Edim Zomemin are punished with the punishment they tried to cause. (Devarim 19:16-21. See Mishnah Makos 5a.)

(c)In the case of the Gemara, a pair of witnesses appear in court and testify that a certain woman, the daughter of a Kohen, committed adultery. The woman, if convicted, would be executed with Sereifah (burning). A second set of witnesses then discredits the first set through Hazamah; the second witnesses state that the first witnesses could not have seen the alleged event, because at the time they claim that it occurred, they were at a different location. Although the first witnesses become Edim Zomemim, the Torah teaches they would not be executed with Sereifah, the punishment they tried to impose upon the woman, but rather with Chenek (strangulation), the punishment which the woman's partner would have received.

(d)A third pair of witnesses then arrives, and discredits the second set through Hazamah; the second witnesses were in fact in an entirely different location, and they had plotted against the first witnesses. The testimony of those original witnesses is re-validated, and the Bas Kohen will be executed with Sereifah. The second set of witnesses (Zomemei Zomemin) will also be executed for attempting to have the first set of witnesses executed, but they will receive Chenek. Because they will receive different penalties, they may not be tried by the same Beis Din on the same day.

7)[line 25] LA'ASOS SEYAG LA'TORAH- to create a [protective] fence around the Torah

8)[line 25] RACHAV AL SUS B'SHABBOS- rode a horse on Shabbos. It is Rabbinically forbidden to ride an animal on Shabbos or Yom Tov, lest one cut off a tree branch to use as a prod (Beitzah 36b).

9)[line 27] HITI'ACH ES ISHTO TACHAS HA'TE'ENAH- had relations with his wife under a fig tree (i.e. in the open)

10)[line 29] MESHAK'IN ES HA'KORAH BA'ARETZ- they drive the [vertical] beam into the ground

11)[line 29] HA'ETZ YOTZEI- the peg emerges [horizontally, near the top of the beam]

12)[line 29] , MAKIF SHTEI YADAV ZO AL GAV ZO, V'SOLEH OSO- [the witness] puts the two hands [of the executed man's body] one on the other, and hangs him [by the hands]

13)[line 30] MOTAH AL HA'KOSEL- leans on the wall

14)[line 30] K'DERECH SHEHA'TABACHIN OSIN- the way butchers do

15)[line 31] MATIRIN OSO MI'YAD- they untie him immediately

16)[line 31]" , , - ; [ ' - ]""LO SALIN NIVLASO AL HA'ETZ, KI KAVOR TIKBERENU BA'YOM HA'HU, KI KILELAS EL-KIM TALUI..."- "His body shall not remain on the tree overnight, rather, you shall surely bury it on that same day, for he was hung [for having] blasphemed HaSh-m..." (Devarim 21:23).

17)[line 33]BEIREICH- he "blessed" (a euphemism for blasphemy)

18)[line 34] B'SHA'AH SHE'ADAM MITZ'TA'ER- when a person suffers (as a result of his sins - RASHI)

19)[line 34] , KALANI ME'ROSHI, KALANI MI'ZERO'I- my head is heavy, my forearm is heavy (i.e. weary)

20)[line 37]() [] HELINO LI'CHEVODO- he left his deceased [unburied] overnight for the deceased's honor

21)[line 37]ARON- casket

22)[line 37]TACHRICHIM- shrouds

23a)[line 39] NIS'AKEL HA'BASAR- when the flesh has decomposed

b)[line 39] MELAKETIN ES HA'ATZAMOS - they gather the bones (LIKUT ATZAMOS)

The standard practice in the time of the Mishnah and Gemara was to first bury the dead in a moist deep place in order for the flesh to decompose quickly. After the body decomposed, the bones were gathered and buried in a coffin in an honorable, dignified place, usually in the family burial cave. It was permitted to move the bones because they were buried with the intention to move them later. The bones would only be moved after a year had passed. (ROSH to Moed Katan 1:10, based on the YERUSHALMI Moed Katan 1:5 and MASECHES SEMACHOS, EVEL RABATI Chapter 12)

c)[line 40] V'KOVERIN OSAN BI'MEKOMAN- and bury them in their place (in his family's burial plot)

24)[last line] EIN B'LIBENU ALEICHEM- there is no [grudge] in our heart against you


25)[line 1]MISABELIN - to observe the mourning period (AVEILUS)

(a)One who loses his father, mother, brother, sister, son, daughter, or spouse is obligated to bury his dead relative and then observe specific laws of mourning. Until the burial, one has the status of an Onen (see next entry). After the burial, his status changes to that of an Avel.

(b)For the following twelve months, an Avel (for a parent) may not buy new clothing nor attend weddings or other celebrations. For the first thirty days (for any of the above 7 relatives), in addition to these restrictions, he may not receive a haircut nor iron his clothing. Additionally, for the first seven days of Aveilus, he must refrain from work, study of Torah, bathing, washing his clothing, and leaving his house, among other restrictions. He must also sit on the ground.

(c)During the first seven days of Aveilus, those who wish to comfort the Avel come to his house. They may not speak until they are first addressed by the Avel, and they then offer words of comfort before leaving.

(d)The Mishnah teaches that the relatives of a person executed by Beis Din do not observe Aveilus.

26)[line 1]ONENIN - they observe the Halachic status of a mourner immediately after a close relative's death (ANINUS)

(a)A person is called an Onen mid'Oraisa on the day of death of one of his seven closest relatives for whom he is required to arrange for burial (i.e. father, mother, brother, sister, son, daughter, and wife). Chazal (Zevachim 101a) learn the Halachah of Aninus from the verse, "v'Achalti Chatas ha'Yom, ha'Yitav b'Einei HaSh-m?" (Vayikra 10:19). Among the Halachos that apply to an Onen is that a Kohen Onen is prohibited from doing the Avodah in the Beis ha'Mikdash, unless he is the Kohen Gadol (Vayikra 10:7, 21:1-4). Moreover, an Onen (even the Kohen Gadol) may not eat Kodshim, Bikurim, or Ma'aser Sheni.

(b)Besides the prohibition against an Onen performing the Avodah, eating Kodshim, etc. mid'Oraisa, the Rabanan extended the prohibitions even after Aninus mid'Oraisa has passed. See Background to Bava Kama 110:7.

27)[line 6] MESHAHIN OSO- we delay him [before giving a guilty verdict]

28a)[line 10]TALUSH- already detached from the ground

b)[line 10]MECHUBAR- growing from the ground

29)[line 12]KETZITZAH- chopping down

30)[line 14]TELISHAH- detaching, plucking

31)[line 17] ACHIM TE'OMIM- twin brothers (for man was created in the image of HaSh-m - RASHI)

32a)[line 18], ECHAD, MINUHU MELECH- one brother, [the people] appointed as king

b)[line 18], V'ECHAD YATZA L'LISTIYUS- and the other went into banditry

33)[line 21] ?MAI MASHMA?- how is this derived [from the words of the verse]?

34)[line 22] KAL LEIS- it is not light [for me]

35)[line 24] KIL LI ALMA- [euphemistically,] "the world seems light for me" (i.e. heavy)

36)[line 35] SHEVOR MALKA- Shevor Malka, King Shapur II, the king of Persia, who ruled 309-379 CE, during the Sassanid Dynasty.

37a)[line 36]ISHTIK- he was silent

b)[line 36] V'LO AMAR LEI V'LO MIDI- and did not respond anything to him

38)[line 36] !IMSAR ALMA B'YADA D'TIPSHA'EI!- the world has been given over into the hand of fools!

39)[line 37] D'LI'AVAD LEI ARON- [Shevur Malka could have responded that the verse teaches only] that a casket should be made for the deceased [and not necessarily that it must then be placed in the ground]

40)[line 38] IKBOR TZADIKEI- we find in the Torah that the righteous were buried (namely, Avraham, Yitzchak, and Yakov - RASHI)

41)[line 39]" , [ ; ' - ]""V'SAFEDU LO CHOL YISRAEL V'KAVERU OSO, [KI ZEH LEVADO YAVO L'YARAV'AM EL KAVER; YA'AN NIMTZA VO DAVAR TOV...]" - And all Yisrael will mourn for him and bury him, [for he alone of all Yarav'am's [family] will be brought to burial; because there was found on him one good thing to HaSh-m, the G-d of Yisrael, in the house of Yarav'am]" (Melachim I 14:13) (THE DEATH OF AVIYAH, SON OF YARAV'AM)

(a)Yarav'am ben Nevat of the tribe of Efrayim was the first king of the Ten Tribes of Yisrael, after their secession from the kingdom of the Davidic dynasty (subsequently known as Yehudah), as recorded in Melachim I 11:26-12:20. In order to prevent the people of the ten tribes from returning to the leadership of the Davidic kings, Yarav'am outlawed the Mitzvah of Aliyah l'Regel (traveling to the Beis ha'Mikdash for Pesach, Shavuos, and Sukos). Instead, he set up two golden calves (ibid. I 12:28), one in Beis El and one in Dan, and proclaimed that they should be served.

(b)Aviyah, son of Yarav'am, had fallen ill, and Yarav'am sent his wife to Shiloh to consult with Achiyah ha'Shiloni (the Navi who had anointed him king over the Ten Tribes). He ordered her to disguise herself so that the people would not know who she was, and ask the Navi what would happen to their son.

(c)HaSh-m warned the Navi that the queen was on her way. He greeted her with the words, "Enter, wife of Yarav'am! Why do you come in disguise; I am sent by HaSh-m to give you bad news!" He told her to remind her husband of all the evil that he had perpetrated. HaSh-m had elevated him to the status of king of the Ten Tribes, tearing away the kingdom from the House of David. Yet Yarav'am did not follow the path of Torah and Mitzvos that David had trodden; on the contrary, he made for himself other gods and images to anger HaSh-m.

(d)Consequently, HaSh-m would destroy every member of his family to the point that "those who would die in the city would be eaten by the dogs, and those who would die in the fields, by vultures." The exception to this punishment was Aviyah. It appears that of all of the members of Yarav'am's family, he was only the only one to have performed a single Mitzvah!

(d)Finally, the Navi informed the wife of Yarav'am that HaSh-m would appoint a faithful king over Yisrael who would utterly destroy the house of Yarav'am, and that due to the sins of her husband, who sinned and caused the whole of Yisrael (the Ten Tribes) to sin, He would send them into exile.

42)[line 40]"[ ,] , ; [ , ]""... LO YISAFEDU V'LO YIKAVERU, L'DOMEN AL PENEI HA'ADAMAH YIHYU..."- "[They shall die victims to illness (due to famine)], they shall be neither eulogized nor buried, as dung on the face of the earth they shall be; [by sword and famine they shall be finished off, and their carcasses shall be fodder for the birds of heaven and for the beasts of the earth]" (Yirmeyahu 16:4). HaSh-m informs Yirmeyahu of the terrible punishment that would befall the inhabitants of Yerushalayim during the Babylonian siege leading up to the Churban of the first Beis ha'Mikdash.

43a)[line 41] KEVURAH MI'SHUM BIZYONA- is the main reason for burial: (a) so that the deceased will not be disgraced (by being left to decompose in the open (RASHI); (b) so that the family of the deceased will not be disgraced (TOSFOS)...

b)[line 41] O MI'SHUM KAPARAH- or for atonement

44)[line 42] LO BA'INA D'LIKBERUHA L'HAHU GAVRA- I do not wish that "that man" (i.e. himself) should be buried

45)[line 43] LO KOL K'MINEI- it is not in his power

46)[line 45]"[] , ""[KI] ADAM EIN TZADIK BA'ARETZ, ASHER YA'ASEH TOV V'LO YECHETA"- "There is no righteous man in the world who [only] does good and does not sin" (Koheles 7:20).

47a)[line 49]HESPEDA - Eulogy

(a)It is a Mitzvah to relate the praises of the deceased individual and the magnitude of the loss in a manner that arouses the feelings of the assembled to cry (Berachos 6b).

(b)The Gemara will expand the discussion to include all actions that are performed for the deceased.

b)[line 49] YEKARA D'CHAYEI- the honor of the living (mourners of the deceased)

c)[line 50] YEKARA D'SHICHVEI- the honor of the dead

48)[line 51] L'APUKEI MI'YORSHIN- to take [funding] from the inheritors [even if they do not wish to pay for it]

49)[line 51]"[ ;] ""... VA'YAVO AVRAHAM LISPOD L'SARAH V'LIVKOSAH"- "[Sarah died in Kiryas Arba, which is Chevron, in the land of Kena'an;] and Avraham came to eulogize Sarah and to cry for her (Bereishis 23:2). This implies that Avraham was not in Chevron at the time of her death.

50)[line 52]MESHAHU- they delayed (the burial)

51)[line 53] KI HEICHI D'MIYAKER BAH AVRAHAM- in order that Avraham be honored through her

52)[line 56]" , () [] , ...""B'SHALOM TAMUS, UCH'MISREFOS AVOSECHA HA'MELACHIM HA'RISHONIM ASHER HAYU LEFANECHA, KEN YISREFU LACH, V''HOY ADON' YISPEDU LACH..." - "You will die in peace, and just as they burned [the belongings of] your ancestors, the previous kings [when they died], so they will burn yours, and they will eulogize you with the words, 'Woe master;' [because I have spoken, says HaSh-m]" (Yirmeyahu 34:5) (THE PROPHECY OF THE FALL OF TZIDKIYAHU)

(a)HaSh-m informed Tzidkiyahu ha'Melech that Yerushalayim was about to fall to Nevuchadnetzar, King of Bavel, and that he too would be captured and handed over to Nevuchadnetzar. HaSh-m told Tzidkiyahu that he would see Nevuchadnetzar and speak to him, but he would never see Bavel (because Nevuchadnetzar would blind him).

(b)The comforting news, though, was that he would not be killed by the sword, and that he would outlive the king of Bavel. In fact, the day after Nevuchadnetzar died, his son Evil Merodach set Tzidkiyahu free, and the next day he died a natural death.