Tuesday, August 21, 2007


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).

Rav Ashi explains that being that the wife snatcher acted improperly, the Rabbanan therefore acted improperly with him and removed the validity of his kiddushin. (This is following the opinion of Rav, who maintains 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.)

This incident must be referring to a case where she was “snatched” willingly, for otherwise, the kiddushin would anyways not be valid since it is taught in Gemora Kiddushin that a betrothal cannot be valid if the woman does not consent. We must say that the man snatched her, but she nodded with her head in agreement.

The Nimukei Yosef understands the case to be referring to one where originally, she did not consent, but afterwards, he convinced her until she finally agreed.

Reb Yosef Engel in Gilyonei Hashas cites a Teshuvos haRashba who writes that we do not apply the principle of “Since he acted improperly, the Rabbanan acted improperly with him” only in places that are specifically mentioned in Chazal. The Sages did not annul the marriage in every case where one acts with trickery. This can be proven from a Gemora in Kiddushin (58b). The Gemora states: One who tells his friend to marry a woman for him (as an agent), and he goes ahead and marries her for himself, she is married to the second one. We do not say that since he acted improperly, the Chachamim invalidated his marriage.