R. Amram asked: How is it if she was excessively dissolute?4 According to him who maintains that a woman only conceives immediately before her period the question does not arise, because [the husband] may not know [when this is] and does not watch her; but the question does arise according to him who maintains that a woman only conceives immediately after the time of her purification. How is it then? Does he watch her since he knows when this occurs; or perhaps this is of no account since she is excessively dissolute?5 The question remains unanswered.
IN THE FOLLOWING CASES A COURT OF LAW etc. Our Rabbis taught: 'Man' — why does Scripture repeat the word?6 To include the wife of a deaf man, the wife of an imbecile, the wife of a weak-minded man, and cases where the husband has gone on a journey to a distant country or is imprisoned, that a Court of Law can give them warning to disqualify them in connection with the marriage-settlement. It is possible [to think that the warning] is also to make them drink; therefore there is a text to say: Then shall the man bring his wife.7 R. Jose says: It is also to make the woman drink so that when the husband is released from prison he makes her drink.8 On what do they differ? — The Rabbis are of the opinion that we require that the same man who 'warned' her must 'bring' her,9 whereas R. Jose is of the opinion that we do not require that the same man who 'warned' her must 'bring' her.10
Our Rabbis taught: When a wife, being under her husband, goeth aside11 — this is to compare a husband with a wife and a wife with a husband. For what practical purpose? — R. Shesheth said: Just as he does not make her drink if he is blind, as it is written: And it be hid from the eyes of her husband,12 so she does not drink if she is blind. R. Ashi said: Just as a woman who is lame or armless does not drink, for it is written,
Sotah 27bAnd the priest shall set the woman before the Lord … and put the meal-offering in her hands,1 so he does not make her drink if he is lame or armless. Mar son of R. Ashi said: Just as a dumb woman does not drink, for it is written And the woman shall say Amen, Amen,2 so he does not make her drink if he is dumb.
MISHNAH. JUST AS THE WATER PROVES HER SO THE WATER PROVES HIM;3 AS IT IS SAID, 'AND SHALL ENTER' TWICE.4 JUST AS SHE IS PROHIBITED TO THE HUSBAND5 SO IS SHE PROHIBITED TO THE PARAMOUR;6 AS IT IS SAID, DEFILED … AND IS DEFILED.7 THIS IS THE STATEMENT OF R. AKIBA. R. JOSHUA SAID: THUS USED ZECHARIAH B. HAKAZAB TO EXPOUND.8 RABBI SAYS: THE WORD DEFILED OCCURS TWICE IN THE SCRIPTURAL PORTION,9 ONE REFERRING [TO HER BEING PROHIBITED] TO THE HUSBAND AND THE OTHER TO THE PARAMOUR.
ON THAT DAY,10 R. AKIBA EXPOUNDED, AND EVERY EARTHEN VESSEL, WHEREINTO ANY OF THEM FALLETH, WHATSOEVER IS IN IT SHALL BE UNCLEAN,11 IT DOES NOT STATE TAME [IS UNCLEAN] BUT YITMA',12 I.E. TO MAKE OTHERS UNCLEAN. THIS TEACHES THAT A LOAF WHICH IS UNCLEAN IN THE SECOND DEGREE,13 MAKES [WHATEVER IT COMES IN CONTACT WITH] UNCLEAN IN THE THIRD DEGREE. R. JOSHUA SAID: WHO WILL REMOVE THE DUST FROM THINE EYES, R. JOHANAN B. ZAKKAI, SINCE THOU SAYEST THAT ANOTHER GENERATION IS DESTINED TO PRONOUNCE CLEAN A LOAF14 WHICH IS UNCLEAN IN THE THIRD DEGREE ON THE GROUND THAT THERE IS NO TEXT IN THE TORAH ACCORDING TO WHICH IT IS UNCLEAN!15 IS NOT R. AKIBA THY PUPIL?16 HE ADDUCES A TEXT IN THE TORAH ACCORDING TO WHICH IT IS UNCLEAN, VIZ., 'WHATSOEVER IS IN IT SHALL BE UNCLEAN'.
ON THAT DAY R. AKIBA EXPOUNDED, AND YE SHALL MEASURE WITHOUT THE CITY FOR THE EAST SIDE TWO THOUSAND CUBITS ETC.17 BUT ANOTHER TEXT STATES, FROM THE WALL OF THE CITY OUTWARD A THOUSAND CUBITS ROUND ABOUT.18 IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO SAY THAT IT WAS A THOUSAND CUBITS SINCE IT HAS BEEN ALREADY STATED TWO THOUSAND CUBITS'; AND IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO SAY THAT IT WAS TWO THOUSAND CUBITS SINCE IT HAS BEEN ALREADY STATED 'A THOUSAND CUBITS'! HOW WAS IT THEN? A THOUSAND CUBITS FOR THE SUBURB19 AND TWO THOUSAND CUBITS FOR THE SABBATH-LIMIT.20 R. ELIEZER THE SON OF R. JOSE THE GALILEAN SAYS: A THOUSAND CUBITS FOR THE SUBURB AND TWO THOUSAND CUBITS FOR FIELDS AND VINEYARDS.21
ON THAT DAY R. AKIBA EXPOUNDED, THEN SANG MOSES AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL THIS SONG UNTO THE LORD AND SPAKE, SAYING,22 THERE WAS NO NEED FOR THE WORD 'SAYING', SO WHY WAS IT ADDED? IT TEACHES THAT THE ISRAELITES RESPONDED TO EVERY SENTENCE AFTER MOSES, IN THE MANNER OF READING HALLEL,23 'I WILL SING UNTO THE LORD, FOR HE HATH TRIUMPHED GLORIOUSLY,24 ON THAT ACCOUNT IS THE WORD 'SAYING' MENTIONED. R. NEHEMIAH SAYS: IN THE MANNER OF READING THE SHEMA'25 AND NOT HALLEL.
ON THAT DAY R. JOSHUA B. HYRCANUS EXPOUNDED: JOB ONLY SERVED THE HOLY ONE, BLESSED BE HE, FROM LOVE: AS IT IS SAID, THOUGH HE SLAY ME, YET WILL I WAIT FOR HIM.26 AND SHOULD IT BE STILL DOUBTFUL WHETHER THE MEANING IS 'I WILL WAIT FOR HIM' OR 'I WILL NOT WAIT',27 THERE IS ANOTHER TEXT TO DECLARE, TILL I DIE I WILL NOT PUT AWAY MINE INTEGRITY FROM ME.28 THIS TEACHES THAT WHAT HE DID WAS FROM LOVE. R. JOSHUA [B. HANANIAH] SAID: WHO WILL REMOVE THE DUST FROM THINE EYES, R. JOHANAN B. ZAKKAI, SINCE THOU HAST BEEN EXPOUNDING ALL THY LIFE THAT JOB ONLY SERVED THE ALL-PRESENT FROM FEAR, AS IT IS SAID, THAT MAN WAS PERFECT AND UPRIGHT, AND ONE THAT FEARED GOD. AND ESCHEWED EVIL!29 DID NOT JOSHUA, THE PUPIL OF THY PUPIL,30 TEACH THAT WHAT HE DID WAS FROM LOVE?31
GEMARA. [The Mishnah states: SO THE WATER PROVES] HIM. Whom? If I say that it is the husband, what has the husband done? Should you reply
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