[97a - 57 lines; 97b - 56 lines]

1)[line 1]"את סוכת דוד הנופלת""ES SUKAS DAVID HA'NOFELES"- "the Sukah of David that is fallen" (Amos 9:11) - HaSh-m will send the Mashi'ach to reestablish the fallen Davidic dynasty. This is why the Mashi'ach is called "Bar Nafli," "the son of the fallen one."

2)[line 2]תלמידי חכמים מתמעטיםTALMIDEI CHACHAMIM MISMA'ATIM- the number of Torah scholars will decrease

3)[line 3]עיניהם כלותEINEIHEM KALOS- their eyes will be worn out. (See Rashi to Vayikra 26:16 and Devarim 28:32.)

4)[line 3]ביגון ואנחהB'YAGON VA'ANACHAH- with sorrow and sighing (there will be great despair)

5)[line 4]צרות רבותTZAROS RABOS- great troubles

6)[line 4]וגזרות קשות מתחדשותU'GEZEIROS KASHOS MISCHADASHOS- and harsh decrees are renewed constantly

7)[line 5]שהראשונה פקודהSHEHA'RISHONAH PEKUDAH- before the first one is over

8)[line 5]שניה ממהרת לבאSHENIYAH MEMAHERES LA'VO- the second one hurries to come

9)[line 6]שבועSHAVU'A- in the Shemitah year, when the Mashi'ach will come

10)[line 7]"והמטרתי על עיר אחת, ועל עיר אחת לא אמטיר""V'HIMTARTI AL IR ACHAS, V'AL IR ACHAS LO AMTIR"- "I will bring rain on one town, and on one town I will not bring rain" (Amos 4:7).

11)[line 7]חיצי רעב משתלחיםCHITZEI RA'AV MISHTALACHIM- arrows of famine will be sent. There will be famine, but only minor famine, and thus no one in any place will be satiated (RASHI).

12)[line 10]חסידים ואנשי מעשהCHASIDIM V'ANSHEI MA'ASEH- the pious ones and ones of great deeds. "Anshei Ma'aseh" also refers to people who can perform miraculous deeds. (See Rashi to Sotah 49a.)

13)[line 10]משתכחתMISHTAKACHAS- will be forgotten

14)[line 11]שובע ואינו שובעSOVA V'EINO SOVA- there will be satiation, and there will be no satiation (that is, some places will be satiated, and others not)

15)[line 13]קולותKOLOS- voices or sounds. (a) The sounds will be announcements that the Mashi'ach is coming, or (b) the blasts of the Shofar that will herald the return of the Jews from exile (RASHI). (c) Alternatively, the sounds refer to a heavenly phenomenon that signifies the judgment of the nations (MAHARASHA).

16)[line 17]כסדרן מי הוהK'SIDRAN MI HAVAH- were they (the events) in order?

17)[line 20]בית הוועד יהיה לזנותBEIS HA'VA'AD YIHEYEH LI'ZNUS- the meeting place for Torah scholars will be used for licentiousness. (Since the number of Torah scholars will decrease, the study halls will become desolate. Since the study halls are outside of residential areas, people of ill repute will use them for immoral purposes (Rashi to Sotah 49a). According to others, the Beraisa means that public places will be designated for purposes of prostitution.

18)[line 21]והגבלן יאשםVEHA'GAVLAN YE'ASHEM- and the Gavlan (a place) will become desolate

19)[line 21]ואנשי גבול יסובבו מעיר לעיר ולא יחוננוV'ANSHEI GEVUL YESOVEVU ME'IR L'IR V'LO YECHONENU- "people of the border" will wander from city to city without rest. (a) This refers to the people who live at the border of Eretz Yisrael, or to the members of the Sanhedrin (RASHI). The MAHARSHA explains that any city outside of Yerushalayim is considered a city at the border. (b) alt. V'ANSHEI GEVIL (lit. and the men of parchment) - those who write and sell Torah scrolls will wander from town to town trying to earn a livelihood, but they will meet with rejection (YAD RAMAH). (c) alt. V'ANSHEI CHAYIL, men of worth (G'RA).

20)[line 22]וחכמת הסופרים תסרחV'CHOCHMAS HA'SOFRIM TISRACH- and the wisdom of the Torah scholars will decay

21)[line 23]ויראי חטא ימאסוV'YIREI CHET YIM'ASU- and those who fear sin will be despised

22)[line 23]ופני הדור כפני הכלב והאמת נעדרתU'FNEI HA'DOR K'FNEI HA'KELEV VEHA'EMES NE'EDERES- the face of the generation will be like the face of a dog, and truth will be absent. People will physically look like dogs, or they will have no shame like dogs (RASHI) and be very brazen (YAD RAMAH) or hypocritical (MAHARSHA).

23)[line 26]שנעשית עדרים עדרים והולכת להSHE'NA'ASIS ADARIM ADARIM V'HOLECHES LAH- it (truth) will become like flocks of sheep and go away. The generation will be so corrupt that the few surviving truthful persons will have to band together in groups and flee from society (MAHARSHA).

24)[line 28]מי שסר מרע משתולל על הבריותMI SHE'SAR ME'RA MISHTOLEL AL HA'BERIYOS- anyone who turns away from evil is considered foolish by the rest of the people

25)[line 29]ליכא קושטא בעלמאLEIKA KUSHTA B'ALMA- there is no truth in the world

26)[line 32]חלליCHALALEI- riches

27)[line 33]זימנא חדאZIMNA CHADA- one time

28)[line 33]איקלעיIKLA'I- I visited

29)[line 35]מייתMAYIS- die

30)[line 35]בלא זמניהB'LO ZIMNEI- before his time

31)[line 38]חייפא ראישהCHAIFA REISHA- she was washing her hair

32)[line 38]אתאי שיבבתה טרפא אדשאASAI SHIVEVTAH TARFA A'DASHA- her neighbor came and knocked on the door

33)[line 39]לאו אורח ארעאLAV ORACH AR'A- it is not proper manners (to say that my wife is washing her hair)

34)[line 40]שכיבו ליהSHECHIVU LEI- they died

35)[line 41]במטותא מינךB'MATUSA MINACH- we beg of you

36)[line 42]תגריTEGAREI- incite

37)[line 44]ילבינוYALBINU- they will shame

38)[line 45]מתביישMISBAYESH- ashamed of

39)[line 46]עזותAZUS- brazenness

40)[line 46]והיוקר יעותVEHA'YOKER YE'AVES- and honor will dwindle. (a) People will not respect one another. (b) The most honored people will be corrupt (RASHI). (c) Those who should be honored will be scorned instead (YAD RAMAH).

41)[line 46]מינותMINUS- heresy

42)[line 46]תוכחהTOCHACHAH- rebuke

43)[line 47]כולו הפך לבן טהור הואKULO HAFACH LAVAN, TAHOR HU (NIG'EI ADAM: PARACH B'CHULO)

A person whose mark of Tzara'as (see Background to Sanhedrin 87:7a) spreads over his entire body becomes Tahor as the verse states, "Kulo Hafach Lavan Tahor Hu" (Vayikra 13:13). Rava here expounds from this verse that just as the person is Tahor when the mark of Tzara'as spreads over his entire body, so, too, when the plague of heresy spreads over the entire governing body of Yisrael, the Ge'ulah will come (RASHI).

44)[line 50]המסורותHA'MASOROS- a Jew who, of his own volition, reveals the location of another's property to someone who wants to take it away. The Gemara here translates the words "Azlas Yad" as "the power goes up" and interprets them as a reference to those who inform against the Jews to foreign authorities. When these informers become too successful, HaSh-m will bring the redemption (RASHI).

45)[line 53]עקרבAKRAV- a scorpion


(a)The Torah requires that all loans shall be canceled every seventh year, as it states in Devarim 15:2, "Shamot Kol Ba'al Masheh Yado" - "Every creditor who lends anything to his neighbor shall release it." To demand payment of a loan after the Shemitah year is a violation of the prohibition of "Lo Yigos Es Re'ehu v'Es Achiv" - "he shall not exact it of his neighbor or of his brother" (ibid.). Most Rishonim rule that the Shemitah year cancels loans at the end of the year, on the last day of the month of Elul (RAMBAM Hilchos Shemitah v'Yovel 9:1-4).

(b)Hashmatas Kesafim applies mid'Oraisa only when the Yovel year is in practice. Mid'Rabanan it applies today, whether inside or outside of Eretz Yisrael.

(c)Shemitah does not cancel debts which have a due date after the Shemitah year (such as a ten-year loan), since the creditor is not allowed to demand repayment before the due date, and thus "Lo Yisgos" (see (a) above) does not apply. Similarly, Shemitah does not cancel the debt if it can be considered to have been already collected. As such, if a loan is placed in the hands of Beis Din (see Background to Bava Kama 36:16:c-d) or if a Mashkon (collateral) is taken for the loan, it is not cancelled. The latter only applies to collateral of Metaltelin (movable goods) that are already considered to belong to the creditor. In a case where real estate was collected as collateral, the creditor does not acquire the Mashkon, since it stands to be returned. As such, Shemitah does cancel the debt, in spite of the Mashkon.


47)[line 2]אחוהACHUHA- brother

48)[line 3]משמונים וחמישה יובלותMI'SHEMONIM VA'CHAMISHAH YOVLOS- the world will exist for not less than 85 Yovel cycles

49)[line 5]כלהKALEH- will it end (i.e., will the Mashi'ach come after the final Yovel cycle has ended or at the end of the cycle?)

50)[line 7]לא תיסתכיLO TISTECHEI- do not wait

51)[line 10]אשורית ולשון קודשASHURIS V'LASHON KODESH

Kesav Ashuris is the script in which the Torah was given to Moshe Rabeinu. Kesav Ashuris, or "Assyrian script," refers to the modern form of Hebrew (block) letters, which was reinstated by the returning Babylonian captives and replaced the Kesav Ivri, the older "Hebrew" (Syriac or Samaritan) characters which had been in common use.

52)[line 12]גינזיGINZEI ROMI- the treasure houses of Rome. The Romans had confiscated the old scroll when they pillaged Yerushalayim (YAD RAMAH)

53)[line 14]יתוםYASOM- will be orphaned. The world will end in its current state. Like children without a father to control them, the nations will wage war against each other (YAD RAMAH).

54)[line 15]תניניםTANINIM- great sea creatures

55)[line 13]מלחמות גוג ומגוגMILCHAMOS GOG U'MAGOG

(a)Magog is one of the sons of Yefes, son of Noach (Bereishis 10:2). The prophet Yechezkel (chapters 38-39) describes a cataclysmic war lead by Gog from the land of Magog, wherein many nations will combine forces to wage war against Eretz Yisrael. The prophet assures Gog that HaSh-m Himself will undermine the war effort and destroy all of his forces.

(b)We have a tradition that this war will occur at the end of days, preceding the revelation of HaSh-m as Master of the world.

56)[line 14]מחדשMECHADESH- renew

57)[line 20]נוקב ויורד עד התהוםNOKEV V'YORED AD TEHOM- it pierces and descends to the depths. (a) This verse is as unfathomable as the ocean. Just as it is impossible to measure the depth of the ocean, it is impossible to determine the "end" to which this verse alludes (RASHI). (b) Even if the exile is as long as the ocean is deep, the following verse will always provide hope to the Jews, for it assures them that the redemption will ultimately come (YAD RAMAH).

58)[line 29]מלכות בן כוזיבא שתי שנים ומחצהMALCHUS BEN KOZIVA SHTEI SHANIM U'MECHETZAH- the kingship of Ben Koziva will be two and a half years. Rebbi Akiva expounds the verse, "Od Achas Me'at Hi," to mean that that there will be another Churban and Galus, but it will be short (i.e., Ben Koziva was Mashi'ach). (See MAHARSHA.) The Gemara says that this is not the intent of the prophecy; rather, it refers to kingships within Yisrael during the second Beis ha'Mikdash, which will last 70 years (Chashmona'im), 52 years (Hurdus), and two and a half years (Ben Koziva).

59)[line 31]תיפח עצמןTIPACH ATZMAN- their bones should rot

60)[line 31]מחשבי קיציןMECHASHVEI KITZIN- those who calculate the end

61)[line 33]חכה לוCHAKEH LO- wait for him

62)[line 37]מדת הדיןMIDAS HA'DIN- HaSh-m's attribute of justice. Since the Jews have sinned, HaSh-m's attribute of justice does not allow them to be redeemed before the final end. (See YAD RAMAH, MAHARSHA.)

63)[line 40]מתלתין ושיתא צדיקיMI'TELASIN V'SHISA TZADIKEI- [the world has no less than] 36 righteous people. In every generation, there are 36 people who are so righteous that they will merit to perceive the Shechinah when they enter the World to Come. This refers to a particularly elevated level in the World to Come (YAD RAMAH).

64)[line 41]דמקבלי אפי שכינהD'MEKABLEI APEI SHECHINAH- who are worthy of welcoming the Divine Presence

65)[line 43]דראDARA- a row

66)[line 44]דמסתכלי באיספקלריא המאירהD'MISTAKLEI B'ISPAKLARYA HA'ME'IRAH- [these are people] who see with a means for perceiving the Divine with immense clarity

67)[line 46]בני עלייהBENEI ALIYAH- people of a high spiritual level

68)[line 48]לאבלLA'AVEL- for the mourner