Book: Babylonian Talmud Book 1 (Vols. I and II)
Author: Michael L. Rodkinson

Babylonian Talmud Book 1 (Vols. I and II) By Michael L. Rodkinson

Format: Global Grey free PDF, epub, Kindle ebook
Pages (PDF): 434
Publication Date: 1903

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The Talmud is a vast collection of Jewish laws and traditions. Rodkinsons' ten-book edition, contains complete translations of the 'Festivals' and 'Jurisprudence' sections of the Talmud. Rodkinson only finished about a third of the Talmud. This book contains Book 1, which includes Volumes I and II. It should be noted that Rodkinson has been criticized by traditionalist Jews who feel that translating the Talmud is not an acceptable practice.

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MISHNA I.: There are two acts constituting transfer of movable things (over the dividing line of adjoining premises, based on biblical statutes). The two acts are, however, increased to four on the inside and to a like amount on the outside of the premises (by the addition of rabbinical statutes). How so? A mendicant stands outside and the master of a house inside. The mendicant passes his hand into the house (through a window or door) and puts something into the hand of the master, or he takes something out of the master's hand and draws it back (toward him). In such a case the mendicant is guilty (of transfer) and the master of the house is free. If the master of the house passes his hand outside and puts a thing into the hand of the mendicant, or takes something out of the mendicant's hand and brings it into the house, the master of the house is culpable and the mendicant is free. If the mendicant extends his hand into the house and the master takes something out of it, or puts something into it which is drawn to the outside by the mendicant, they are both free. If the master of the house extends his hand outside and the mendicant takes something out of it, or puts something into it which is drawn to the inside by the master, they are both free.

GEMARA: We were taught (Shebuoth, IV. 2): "The acts of transfer on the Sabbath are two, respectively four." Why is this teaching here specified as two respectively four on the inside, and two respectively four on the outside, and there no such specification was made? Said R. Papa: Here the special subject of treatment is the Sabbath, and the Mishna enumerated the cases which involve guilt and those which do not involve guilt; while there the principal subject of treatment is a different one, and he mentions only the cases that involve guilt, leaving the cases that do not involve guilt untouched. But the cases that involve guilt are those by which acts of transfer are committed, and such are only two? Nay, there are two acts of transfer from within and two from without. But the Mishna says, "Yetziath" (which in a literal sense means transfer from within)? Said R. Ashi: The Tana calls transfer from without by the same term. And for what reason? Because every act of removing a thing from its place is called Yetziah. Said Rabbina: The Mishna also bears out this sense; for it speaks of Yetziath and immediately illustrates its remark by citing a case from without. This bears it out. Rabha, however, says: He (the Tana) speaks about divided premises (whose line of division is crossed), and in this case there are only two (in each of which there may be four acts of transfer).

Said R. Mathna to Abayi: Are there not eight, even twelve (instances of transfer over the line of division)? And he rejoined: Such transfers as involve the obligation of a sin-offering are counted; but those that do not involve such an obligation are not counted.

"They are both free." Was not the act (of transfer) committed by both? Said R. Hyya bar Gamda: The act of removing the thing was committed by the joint efforts of both, and they (the rabbis) said: "It is written in the law, when a person did it" --i.e., when one person commits the act he is culpable, but when an act is committed by the joint efforts of two persons, they are both free.

Rabh questioned Rabbi: If one were laden by his friend with eatables and beverages and carried them outside (of the house), how is the law? Is the removing of his body tantamount to the removing of a thing from its place, and therefore he is culpable, or is it not so?

Said Rabbi to him: He is culpable. And this case is not like the case of removing his hand. Why so? Because (in the latter case) the hand was not at rest, while (in the former) the body (before and after removal) was entirely at rest.

Said Rabbi Hyya to Rabh: Descendant of nobles! Did I not tell thee that when Rabbi is engaged with a certain tract ask him not about a subject (that is treated) in another tract, for he may not have that subject in his mind! And if Rabbi were not a great man thou mightest cause him shame, for he would give thee an answer which might not be right. In this instance, however, he gave thee a correct answer; as we have learned in the following Boraitha: If one was laden with eatables and beverages while it was yet light on the eve of Sabbath, and he carried them outside after dark, he is culpable; for his case is not like that of removing the hand mentioned above.

Abayi said: From all that was said above it is certain to me that the hand of a man (standing on the street) is not treated as public ground. And I also see that (if a man stands on private ground) his hand is not to be treated as private ground. Would it be correct, then, to regard the hand as unclaimed ground? If so, would the penalty imposed by the rabbis in such a case, namely, that one should not move his hand (containing a movable thing) back (during the Sabbath day), apply in this case or not?

Come and hear the following Boraitha: If a man has his hand filled with fruit and he extends it outside (of the premises where he stands), one said he is not permitted to draw it back, and another Boraitha says he is allowed to do so. May we not assume that this is their point of dispute: the former holds that the hand is treated as unclaimed ground, and the latter thinks that it is not like unclaimed ground? Nay, it may be that both agree that the hand (as spoken of in our Mishna) is like unclaimed ground, and yet it presents no difficulty. One of the Boraithas treats of a man who had extended his hand unintentionally, and the other one treats of a man who had put forth his hand intentionally. In the former case the rabbis did not fine him, and in the latter case they did.