Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Daf Yomi - Kesuvos 66 - Highlights


The Mishna states: The findings of a woman and her earnings belong to her husband. Regarding property that she inherits, the husband may only eat the produce while she is alive. Payment for her embarrassment or blemish belongs to her. Rabbi Yehudah ben Beseira says: When the injury is hidden, two parts of the payment are hers, and one is his. And when it is exposed, two parts are his and one is hers. His portion is given to him immediately, but in regards to her portion, land is purchased and he eats the produce. (65b).

Does a Married Woman Keep Lost Objects That She Finds?

A braisa was taught in front of Rava stating that a lost object found by a wife belongs to her. Rabbi Akiva said: It belongs to her husband.

Rava asked: If Rabbi Akiva holds that the money produced by extra work that a woman does can be kept for herself, although work money usually goes to a husband, certainly he would hold that she could keep any lost object that she finds!

[The fact that Rabbi Akiva holds this way is established in a Mishna.] The Mishna states: If a woman vows that the benefits of her work should be forbidden to her husband, her husband does not have to be “meifer” – “deny” the vow (as she is already indebted to give him these benefits). Rabbi Akiva says: He should be meifer, as she might work more than she has to and these benefits will be forbidden to him.

Rava therefore said: It must be that the opinions are mixed up. The braisa should read that a lost object found by a wife belongs to her husband. Rabbi Akiva said: It belongs to her.

When Rabin arrived (from Eretz Yisrael), didn’t he say in the name of Rabbi Yochanan: Everyone agrees that if a woman does more work than necessary because she is talented and can easily do so that all of the profits belongs to the husband. The only argument is when a woman pushes herself to work more than usual. The Tana Kama (of the braisa) understands that this too goes to her husband, while Rabbi Akiva says that she is allowed to keep the extra money. [Accordingly, why should Rabbi Akiva say that if she finds a lost object, that took no effort to find, that it should not go the husband?]

Rav Papa answered: A lost object is considered as if extra effort is put in (as it often takes some effort to recover, such as a lost injured animal), and is therefore subject to the argument of Rabbi Akiva and the Rabbanan.

Rav Papa asked: If she does two jobs at once, is this considered extra effort? Ravina asked: If she does three or four jobs at once, is this considered extra effort? Their questions remain unanswered. (65b – 66a)

Paying the Husband for Embarrassing his Wife
[The Mishna quotes Rabbi Yehuda ben Beseira as saying that a husband receives partial payment for the embarrassment and blemish of his wife.] Rava bar Rav Chanan asked: If someone embarrassed his friend’s horse, should he have to pay him for embarrassment? The Gemora asks: Does a horse get embarrassed?

The Gemora answers that Rava bar Rav Chanan meant to ask: If someone spat at his friend and the spittle hit him, or he removed the hair covering of a woman or his friend’s cloak, he is required to pay him/her four hundred zuz. Rav Papa taught: This is only if the spittle reached his friend, but if it only hit his clothes, he is exempt from paying this fine.

The Gemora answers: Spit that only hits clothing is not such an embarrassment, whereas if a person’s wife is embarrassed it is embarrassing to him as well.

Ravina asked Rav Ashi: This seems difficult, as according to this answer if someone embarrassed a poor person from a good family, he should have to pay the entire family for the embarrassment!

Rav Ashi answered: In such a case the poor person is not like their body. Here, a wife is considered to be as one person with her husband. (66a)

If a person promised monies to his son-in-law who died (and his brother will perform “yibum” – “levirate marriage” if he will similarly be supported by his father-in-law), the sages said: He can tell his new son-in-law, “I was willing to give this money to your brother, but not to you.”

If a woman promises to bring in one thousand manah to the marriage, he should write in the kesuvah that he will give her one thousand five hundred. If she brings presents to him that deteriorates over time, he should pledge opposite their value in the kesuvah less one fifth. If she brings assets into the marriage that are worth one hundred and they are worth exactly one hundred (and no more) in the marketplace, he should pledge one hundred in the kesuvah. If he commits to writing a manah in the kesuvah, she must ascertain that the wear-and-tear valuables she brings him are worth thirty one sela and a dinars (which equal a manah plus one fifth). If he commits to four hundred, she must bring him five hundred. Whatever the estimate is by the groom, he must commit to one fifth less (the Gemora will discuss all of these seemingly extra statements). (66a – 66b)

A Solid Claim
The braisa states: It does not need to be said that the father-in-law can make this claim if his first son-in-law was a Torah scholar and his second (possible) son-in-law is an ignoramus. Even if the opposite is true, he can claim “I would give this money to your brother but not to you.” (66b)

The Mishna’s Cases Are Not Redundant
[The Gemora now discusses the redundancies of the Mishna.] The Gemora asks: These are the same cases as in the first part of the Mishna!

The Gemora answers: The difference between them is a large estimate versus a small monetary estimate. [One might think that either the larger amounts are exaggerated or that smaller amounts are exaggerated to make them more important, and therefore a fifth is not in every case. This is why examples of both a lot of money and small amounts are given.] Additionally, the Mishna wanted to state that this is true whether the estimate is done by him or by her. (66b)

If she commits to bringing him money (to invest), each sela of hers equals six dinars (one third more than its face value). The groom should give ten dinarss to her “kupah” (see Gemora later) for every hundred that she brings into the marriage for her own benefit (see Rashi). Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel says: This is all in accordance with the custom of the land. (66b)

The Case is not Redundant
The Gemora asks: This is the same lesson as the first case in the previous Mishna that he had to commit to fifteen hundred zuz! The Gemora answers that the Mishna wanted to stress that just as this applies to big amounts it also applies to small amounts.

The Gemora explains further why this was necessary. If it would only say this by big amounts, one might say that this is because one can easily make a lot of profit with a lot of capital. However, with small amounts of money with small profit margins, maybe this is not the case. The Mishna therefore said the law is the same. If it would have only said the law by small money, we would have thought this is only regarding small money where there is less responsibility and liability, not regarding large amounts where the responsibility and liability is greater. This is why the case of the large amount is also necessary. (66b)

What is a “Kupah”?
The Mishna had stated: The groom should give ten dinarss to her “kupah.”

The Gemora asks: What is her “kupah?” Rav Ashi says: It refers to her box of perfumes. Rav Ashi qualified this ruling: This law was only stated regarding Yerushalayim.

Rav Ashi asked: Is this according to their estimated value or the value he accepts for the kesuvah (one fifth less)? If you say it is for the value he accepts, is it just the first day or for every day? If it is every day (see Rashi), does that mean just the first Shabbos or every Shabbos? If it includes every Shabbos, is this only the first month of marriage or every month? If it is every month, does it mean every month for the first year of marriage, or for every year of marriage? The question remains unresolved. (66b)

The Daughter of
Nakdimon ben Gurion
Rav Yehuda said in the name of Rav: There was an incident with the daughter of Nakdimon ben Gurion, who the sages ruled should receive for her box of perfumes four hundred gold coins for one day. She told them: “So you should rule for your daughters.” They answered amen.

The Rabbis taught in a braisa: There was an incident with Rabbi Yochanan ben Zakai who was riding on a donkey on his way out of Yerushalayim, and his students were following him on foot. H saw a young girl who was picking barley out of the dung of Arab-owned animals. When she saw him, she covered her face with her hair and stood before him saying, “Master, give me food!” He said, “My daughter, who are you?” She replied, “I am the daughter of Nakdimon ben Gurion.” He asked her, “My daughter, where did your father’s money go?” She replied, “Don’t they say the following parable in Yerushalayim: “The salt of money is its shortage (if you want your money to be preserved, lessen it through charity)?” Others say that it is through kindness. (As the members of her family were not charitable they lost their money.) He asked, “Where did the fortune of your in-laws go?” She replied, “This one came and destroyed that which belonged to the other (my father’s money and his money were mixed up together, and when one was lost, the other disappeared with it).” She continued, “Master, do you remember when you signed my kesuvah?” He turned to his students and said, “I remember when I signed on her kesuvah, and I read about a million gold dinarss that were pledged by her father alone, besides of that of her in-laws.” Rabban Yochanan ben Zakai started crying. He said, “Praised are you Yisrael! When you do the will of Hashem, no nation can rule over you! When you do not do the will of Hashem, He delivers you into the hands of a low nation. And not into the hands of a low nation, but in the hands of the animals of a low nation!”

The Gemora asks: Didn’t we learn that Nakdimon gave generously to charity?

The Gemora answers: Either he gave for his own honor or he did not give as much as he should have. (66b – 67a)