Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Daf Yomi - Yevamos 110 - Highlights

The Validity of a Minor’s Marriage

Rav stated (109b) that a minor who was married off by her brothers/mother, and subsequently married someone else after she became an adult without ever having done mi’un to the first husband does not require a get (halachic divorce document) from her second husband. It must be that Rav is discussing a case where the girl did not have relations with her first husband after she became an adult, and even so she does not need a get from her second husband, as the kidushin of the first husband is valid. The Gemora answers that no, Rav only stated his Halachah when the minor did have relations with the first husband after she became an adult.

The Gemora asks, if this is the case, what is the reasoning of Shmuel (who argues on Rav and state that her second husband is required to give her a get)? [It is clear that the first marriage is valid, and the second is totally invalid!] The Gemora answers that Shmuel holds that whenever someone has marital relations, they do so on the basis of their original kiddushin (not in order to make a new kiddushin).

The Gemora asks, didn’t Rav and Shmuel already argue about these principles? A case was stated where a person made a conditional kiddushin (that the woman would not have any outstanding vows or blemishes), but the nisuin was done without mention of conditions. Rav said that if the condition was later found to have been violated a get is still required. Shmuel said that a get is not required. Rav stated that a get is required because once he married her he essentially relented on his condition. Shmuel said that a get is required because his marital relations are based on the validity of his original kiddushin. [This argument seems to be the same as the previous argument between Rav and Shmuel. Why are both necessary?]

The Gemora answers that both arguments are necessary (using the text of Rashi, see Bach). In the first case of our Gemora, Rav might have only stated that the kiddushin was valid when the first husband had relations with her, because there was no condition against the kiddushin. However, in the second case where there is a condition, Rav might admit to Shmuel that the kiddushin is invalid. If we would only state the second case, maybe the second case (where an explicit condition was violated) is where Shmuel applied his rule. In the first case, perhaps he would agree to Rav. Both cases are therefore necessary.

The Gemora returns to its original question: Does Rav indeed hold that for the marriage of a minor to become valid she must have marital relations with her husband when she becomes an adult (and if not the marriage is invalid)? There was an incident in Narsh where a girl was married off when she was a minor. When she became an adult, they sat her by a Chupah (wedding canopy, in order to validate the first marriage), and someone else snatched her away before the “wedding” (and made her his wife)! Rav Bruna and Rav Chananel, students of Rav, were present when this happened, and they did not even require her to have a get from the second “husband” (as his kiddushin is invalid). This implies that Rav viewed the first marriage as valid when she became an adult, even before she had relations!

Rav Papa answers that this was because the custom in Narsh was to have the real marriage before the public Chupah (in such a case, meaning that they already had relations since she became an adult). Rav Ashi answers that being that the wife snatcher acted improperly, the Rabbanan therefore acted improperly with him and removed the validity of his kiddushin. Ravina asked that this makes sense if he only did kiddushin with money (as the Rabbanan can invalidate his kiddushin transaction). If he did kiddushin through having marital relations, how can the Rabbanan “take away” his having had marital relations? Rav Ashi answered that the Rabbanan can state that his relations are considered to have been promiscuous and are not valid for kiddushin.

Rav Yehuda states in the name of Shmuel that the law is like Rabbi Eliezer (see Mishna 109a). Rabbi Elazar also stated that the law is like Rebbi Eliezer. (110a)


If someone was married to two minors who were orphans and he died, if his brothers do yibum or chalitzah to one of them, the other is then exempt from yibum or chalitzah. This would also be the case if the two girls are (adults and) deaf. If the two wives in such a case are one minor and one deaf girl, doing yibum to one of them does not exempt the other. If one is a regular woman and one is deaf, doing yibum to the regular woman exempts the deaf woman, and yibum to the deaf woman does not exempt the regular woman. If one wife was an adult and the other a minor, the yibum of the adult exempts the minor, but the yibum of the minor does not exempt the adult. (110a)

A Deaf Woman and Chalitzah

The Gemora asks, can a deaf woman have chalitzah? Doesn’t the mishna state that a deaf man who does chalitzah, a deaf woman who receives chalitzah, and a woman who received chalitzah from a minor, their chalitzah are ruled invalid. Rav Gidal says in the name of Rav that the Mishna is actually referring only to yibum as a choice for the deaf woman. Rabah (see side of Gemora) says that the Mishna could even be referring to chalitzah. Our Mishna is talking about a woman who was deaf from birth, and the Mishna earlier is talking about a woman who was originally a Pikei’ach (meaning that he has all of his senses as opposed to being deaf) and then became deaf. It makes sense that a woman who was deaf from birth can receive chalitzah, as just as she got married this way (through hints), so too she should be able to have chalitzah in this way. If she was a Pikachas adult (when she married) and only then became deaf she cannot do chalitzah, as she cannot hear the words of chalitzah.

Abaye asked, is it true that a woman who was originally deaf can have chalitzah? Doesn’t the Mishna (112b) state that if two brothers, one a Pikei’ach and one deaf, married two women of similar types, if the deaf husband of the deaf wife dies, what options are there for the Pikei’ach husband? He should do yibum, and if he wants he can subsequently divorce her. If the Pikei’ach is the one who dies, what should the deaf husband do? He can only do yibum, and he cannot give her a get (as his get cannot take away his brother’s kiddushin, which is more powerful than the kiddushin of a deaf person). Abaye asks, this Mishna seems to be talking about a case where the deaf woman married a deaf man when she was already deaf, and even so the Mishna does not give the option of chalitzah! The Gemora answers the case must be that she became deaf afterwards.

The Gemora further tries to clarify whether or not a woman who was deaf before her marriage can have chalitzah. The Mishna (112b) gives a case where two Pikei’ach brothers marry two women: one who is also a Pikachas and one who is deaf. If the husband of the deaf woman dies, what option is there for the Pikei’ach husband? He can do yibum, and if he wants he can give her a get. If the husband of the Pikachas dies, what options are there for the Pikei’ach who is married to the deaf woman? He may do either yibum or chalitzah. It must be, the Gemora states, that being that the case clearly involves men who were Pikchin originally, even before they married, the woman who is deaf must be someone who was deaf before she was married, and yet only yibum is an option and not chalitzah! The Gemora answers that each person in the case has a different status (and the deaf woman must have only become deaf afterwards).

Abaye asked (a similar question) from a Mishna (112b) regarding two brothers, one a Pikei’ach and one who is deaf, who married two similar sisters. If the deaf husband of the deaf woman dies, what option is there for the Pike’ach husband? The deaf woman is exempt from yibum as she is the sister of her potential yavam. If the Pikei’ach husband of the Pikachas wife dies, what option is there for the deaf husband of the deaf wife? He must divorce his own wife, and not marry his ex-wife’s sister as well. The Gemora asks, if you will say this deaf man is someone who was originally a Pikei’ach before marriage and only later became deaf, can someone like that divorce his wife? The Mishna states that if a wife becomes deaf, she can still be divorced, but if she becomes insane she cannot be divorced. If a man either becomes deaf or insane, he cannot divorce at all. It must therefore be that the braisa is talking about a man who was originally deaf, and his wife was also originally deaf. Being that we have now established a case in this Mishna where sisters (one who was a deaf woman) were originally deaf, it must be that the cases in this same Mishna involving deaf women who are not sisters also refers to women who were originally deaf before marriage! As stated above, these cases clearly conclude that the only option for such women is yibum, not chalitzah! [This proves that women who were deaf before marriage are not eligible for chalitzah, unlike the opinion of Rabah stated above.] This question caused Rabah to remain quiet (seemingly without an answer).

When Abaye went before Rav Yosef, Rav Yosef asked him why he had asked Rabah from these cases. Rabah could still answer that although the case of the deaf sisters discuss sisters who were originally deaf, the cases in the Mishna that deal with two wives who were not sisters deal with women who only became deaf after marriage! Rav Yosef said that you should have asked him from the following case (in the Mishna). Two deaf brother who married either two Pikachas sisters, two deaf sisters, or two sisters one of who was a Pikachas and one who was deaf, and two deaf sisters who married either two Pikei’ach brothers, two deaf brothers, or two deaf brothers one who was a Pikei’ach and one who was deaf, they are all exempt from yibum and chalitzah (in the event that one of the husband’s die). If the wives were not sisters, they can do yibum, and if they want to subsequently divorce them, they can. What is the case? If it talking about husbands who were originally Pikchim and then became deaf, doesn’t the Mishna state that if a wife becomes deaf, she can still be divorced, but if she becomes insane she cannot be divorced. If a man either becomes deaf or insane, he cannot divorce at all. The Mishna must therefore be discussing cases where everyone in the case was originally deaf, and yet the Mishna states that if the wives were not sisters, yibum can be performed. This implies that only yibum, not chalitzah! This question is a Tiyuvta (question that is seemingly impossible to answer) on Rabah. (110a – 110b)

A Minor and a Deaf Woman

Rav Nachman said that he found Rav Ada bar Ahavah and his son-in-law Rav Chana sitting and gathering students (for a study lesson) in the marketplace of Pumbedisa. They stated that this that it states in the Mishna, that the yibum of one of two widows, one who is a minor and one who is deaf, does not exempt the co-wife from yibum, is only true when their husband was a Pikei’ach. We are uncertain if he would have rather had the minor as a wife, or the deaf woman as a wife. He might have preferred to have the minor as a wife as she would eventually be knowledgeable (as opposed to being deaf), or he might have preferred the deaf woman who was physically an adult and a more appropriate mate for marital relations. However, if the husband was deaf, he certainly preferred having a wife who was deaf, as she was better for marital relations and similar to him. Rav Nachman states that he told them that even if these wives were widowed from a deaf husband we are still doubtful.

How indeed do we rectify the status of the minor and deaf widows (who the Mishna states do not exempt each other)? Rav Chisda says in the name of Rav that he should do yibum to the deaf woman, give her a get, and the minor should wait until she is older at which point the yavam can do an effective chalitzah. (110b)