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Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Kethuboth

Folio 34a

R. Simeon, who says: An unfit slaughtering is not called1  slaughtering. This might be right with regard to [the slaughtering for] idolatry and [the slaughtering of] the ox that is to be stoned, but the slaughtering on Sabbath is a fit slaughtering, for we learnt: If someone has slaughtered [an animal] on Sabbath or the Day of Atonement, although he is guilty of [a transgression for which he forfeits] his life,2  his slaughtering is a fit one?3  — He holds the opinion of R. Johanan ha-Sandalar,4  for it has been taught: If someone has cooked on Sabbath, [if] by mistake, he may eat it, [and if] wilfully he may not eat it: This is the view of R. Meir. R. Judah says: [If] by mistake, he may eat it after the outgoing5  of the Sabbath, [if] wilfully, he may never eat it. R. Johanan hasandalar says: [If] wilfully, others may eat it after the outgoing of the Sabbath, but not he, [if] wilfully, neither he nor others may eat it.6  What is the reason of R. Johanan ha-Sandalar? As R. Hiyya expounded at the entrance of the house of the Prince:7  [It is written:] 'Ye shall keep the Sabbath therefore, for it is holy unto you'.8  [From this we derive:] As what is holy is forbidden to be eaten, so what has been prepared9  on the Sabbath is forbidden to be eaten. If [so, you might say that] as what is holy is forbidden to be enjoyed,10  so what has been prepared on the Sabbath should be forbidden to be enjoyed? — It says 'unto you'; from this we learn: It shall belong to you.11  You might think [that it is forbidden to eat] even [what has been prepared on the Sabbath] by mistake,12  [therefore] it is said: every one that profaneth it shall surely be put to death.13  [This teaches that only] when [the act was done] wilfully,14  have I told thee [that it is forbidden as that which is holy] but not [if it was done] by mistake.

R. Aha and Rabina differ concerning this. One says: What has been prepared on Sabbath [is forbidden] according to the Bible, and one says: [only] according to the Rabbis. He who says: According to the Bible — as we have [just] explained.15  [And] he who says: according to the Rabbis — the verse says: 'It is holy', [that means]: 'it'16  is holy, but what has been prepared on it is not holy.17  According to him who says [that the prohibition is only] Rabbinical, what is the reason of the Rabbis who declare him18  free?19  — The Rabbis declare him free only with regard to other cases.20

But [with regard to] one who slaughtered for idolatry [one can ask:] as soon as he has cut21  a little it22  has become forbidden,23  so when he continues the slaughtering24  he does not slaughter what is the owner's?25  — Raba said: [it speaks of a case] when he says [that] he worships it26  with the completion of the slaughtering. [But with regard to] the ox that is to he stoned [one can ask]: he27  does not slaughter what is his?28  Here we speak of a case when he29  handed it30  to a keeper and it caused the damage31  in the house of the keeper32  and it was sentenced in the house of the keeper and a thief stole it from the house of the keeper. And R. Meir holds the view of R. Jacob and holds the view of R. Simeon. He holds the view of R. Jacob who says: If the keeper returned it even after the sentence had been pronounced, it is regarded as returned.33  And he holds the view of R. Simeon who says: that which causes [the gain or loss of] money is regarded as money.34

Rabbah said: Indeed [it speaks of a case] when he35  slaughtered it himself

Original footnotes renumbered. See Structure of the Talmud Files
  1. Lit., 'its name is not'. An act of slaughter that does not for any reason whatsoever effect the ritual fitness of the animal to be eaten is not considered by them in the eye of the law a slaughter.
  2. V. supra 30a.
  3. Mishnah, Hul. 14a.
  4. Probably 'sandal-maker'.
  5. Lit., 'at the outgoing'.
  6. According to R. Johanan ha-Sandalar what has been cooked on Sabbath wilfully must not be eaten by any few. The same would apply to what has been slaughtered wilfully on Sabbath. Thus one can say that the slaughtering on Sabbath is an unfit slaughtering.
  7. Judah the Prince.
  8. Ex. XXXI, 14.
  9. Lit., 'the work of'.
  10. I. e., to have any use or benefit from it.
  11. Although one may not eat it, one may have other uses or benefits from it, e.g., one may sell it to one who is not a Jew and is therefore not bound by these laws.
  12. If he did not know it was Sabbath (Rashi).
  13. Ibid.
  14. For which the death penalty is inflicted.
  15. Lit., 'said'.
  16. I. e., the Sabbath itself.
  17. The prohibition is therefore only Rabbinical.
  18. Who stole an animal and slaughtered it on Sabbath.
  19. From paying four- or fivefold. Since the animal is, according to Biblical law, fit for food, it should be considered a fit slaughter.
  20. Lit., the rest', i.e., the other two cases mentioned: the serving of idols and the ox condemned to death.
  21. The throat of the animal.
  22. The animal.
  23. For any use as an animal slaughtered for idol worship v. Hul. 40a.
  24. Cutting the throat of the animal until the slaughtering of the animal is complete to make it fit for food.
  25. It has already become forbidden to the owner for any use and has thus ceased to be in his possession. He should therefore be free from paying four- or fivefold.
  26. The idol. The idolatrous act is to take place when the slaughtering has been completed. Consequently he was slaughtering what was the owner's.
  27. The thief.
  28. The owner's. An ox that is to be stoned for goring a person is forbidden for any use. It is therefore regarded as not belonging any more to the owner. And he should therefore be free from paying four- or fivefold.
  29. The owner.
  30. The ox.
  31. By killing a person. Cf. Ex. XXI, 28.
  32. I. e., while in the possession of the keeper.
  33. Although the condemned animal has no value, the liability of the keeper, who has to return the animal to its owner, is discharged by the keeper returning the animal to its owner.
  34. Since the thief stole the condemned animal the keeper cannot return it to the owner and he has to pay to the owner the value of the animal as it was when he entrusted it to him. The ox that is to be stoned has therefore a money.value for the keeper. The thief must therefore pay the four- or fivefold. For fuller notes on the whole passage beginning from 'Resh Lakish said' etc., 33b, v. B.K. (Sonc. ed.) pp. 407-410.
  35. The thief.

Kethuboth 34b

and R. Meir holds the view that [though generally] one may receive the lashes and pay, one cannot receive the death penalty and pay1  but these [cases]2  are different, because the Torah has enacted something novel in [the matter of] fine,3  and [therefore]4  he has to pay, although he has to suffer the death penalty.5  And Rabbah follows his own principle, for Rabba said: If he had a kid which he had stolen and he slaughtered it on Sabbath, he is bound,6  for he was already guilty of stealing before he came to the profanation7  of the Sabbath; [but] if he stole and slaughtered it on Sabbath he is free,8  for if there is no stealing9  there is no slaughtering and no selling.

Rabbah said further: If he had a kid which he had stolen and had slaughtered it at the place he broke into,10  he is bound,11  for he was already guilty of stealing before he came to the transgression of breaking in;12  [but] if he stole and slaughtered it in the place he broke into,13  he is free, for if there is no stealing, there is no slaughtering and no selling. And it was necessary [to state both cases]. For if he had let us hear [the case of the] Sabbath [I would have said that he is free from payment] because its prohibition is a perpetual prohibition,14  but [in the case of] breaking in, which is only a prohibition for the moment,15  I might say, [that it is] not [so].16  And if he had let us hear [the case of] breaking in [I would say that he is free from payment] because his breaking in is his warning,17  but [with regard to the] Sabbath, [in] which [case] a warning is required, I might say that [it is] not [so].18  [Therefore] it is necessary [to state both cases].

R. Papa said: If one had a cow that he had stolen and he slaughtered it on Sabbath, he is liable19  for he was already guilty of stealing before he came to the profanation of the Sabbath; if he had a cow that he borrowed and he slaughtered it20  on Sabbath, he is free.21  R. Aha the son of Raba said to R. Ashi: Does R. Papa mean to tell us22  [that the same rule23  applies to] a cow? — He answered him: R. Papa means to tell us [that the same rules applies to] a borrowed [cow]. You might possibly think [that] because R. Papa said that he24  becomes responsible for its food from the time of [his taking possession of the cow by] 'pulling'25  here also he becomes responsible for any unpreventable accident [that may befall it] from the time of borrowing,26  so he lets us hear [that it is not so].27

Raba said: If their father left them28  a borrowed cow,29  they30  may use it during the whole period for which he borrowed it;31  if it died,32  they are not responsible for what happened.33  If they thought that it belonged to their father and they slaughtered it and ate it, they pay the value of the meat at the lowest price.34  If their father left them an obligation of property,35  they are bound to pay. Some refer it36  to the first case,37  and some refer it to the second case.38  He who refers it to the first case, so much the more [does he refer it] to the second case, and he differs from R. Papa.39  And he who refers it to the second case40  does not refer it to the first case, and he agrees with R. Papa.41

It is alright [that] R. Johanan42  does not say according to Resh Lakish,43  because he wants to explain44  it45  according to the Rabbis. But why does not Resh Lakish say according to R. Johanan? — He will answer you: since he is free46  if they warned him, he is also free [even] if they did not warn him.47

And they48  follow their own principles,49  for when R. Dimi came [from Palestine] he said: He who has committed inadvertently an act which, if he had committed it wilfully, would have been punishable with death or with lashes, and [which is also punishable] with something else,50  R. Johanan says [that] he is bound,51  and Resh Lakish says [that] he is free.52  R. Johanan says [that] he is bound, for they did not warn him.53  Resh Lakish says [that] he is free,54  for since he is free if they warned him, so he is free also when they did not warn him.

Resh Lakish raised an objection against R. Johanan: [It is written]: If no harm follow, he shall be surely fined.55

Original footnotes renumbered. See Structure of the Talmud Files
  1. Cf. supra 33b.
  2. In the case of the slaughtering of the stolen animal, supra 33b.
  3. A fine of four or five times the value of the animal is in itself a novel law.
  4. In view of the novel law in these cases.
  5. Lit., 'he is killed'.
  6. To pay the fine.
  7. Lit., 'prohibition'.
  8. From paying the fine,
  9. The crime of stealing is, as it were, wiped out by the more serious transgression of profaning the Sabbath. There is, therefore, no payment of principal. And since there is no payment of the principal, there is also no payment of the fine for the slaughtering and selling.
  10. [H] means here both: the place he broke into and the time of breaking into the place. This breaking in took place after the stealing of the kid, which was a separate act. Cf. Ex. XXII, 2.
  11. To pay the fine.
  12. In which case he may forfeit his life, v. Ex. XXII, 2.
  13. Here the stealing and breaking in are one act.
  14. I. e., if he has profaned the Sabbath and incurred the death penalty, this penalty can always be inflicted.
  15. The thief's life is forfeit only when he is 'found breaking in'. If he is found later his life is not forfeited, v. Ex. XXII, 2.
  16. I. e., that he is not free from payment.
  17. I. e., he may be killed without a warning.
  18. I. e., that he is not free from payment.
  19. To pay the fine.
  20. And thus stole it.
  21. From paying the fine. For the stealing and the Sabbath desecration by means of the slaughtering were committed simultaneously.
  22. Lit., 'come to let us hear'.
  23. Which Rabbah applies to the kid.
  24. Cf. B.M. 91a.
  25. Meshikah. v. Glos.
  26. I. e., before he desecrated the Sabbath. And therefore he should have to pay the fine when he slaughters it on Sabbath.
  27. That the stealing coincides with the slaughtering, and he is therefore free from payment if he slaughters the borrowed cow on Sabbath.
  28. I. e., to his children.
  29. I. e., a cow which the father had borrowed.
  30. The children.
  31. Lit., 'all the days of the borrowing'.
  32. Accidentally, without their fault.
  33. Lit., 'for its accident'. The children are not responsible because they did not borrow it.
  34. Which is generally estimated to be two-thirds of the ordinary price, cf. B.B. 146b.
  35. [H], i.e., property which is a security for the payments which would have to be made. He left them (landed) property and with it the obligation which rests upon such property. The chief point in the phrase is the obligation for which such property is a security, and which was passed on to the children.
  36. The last statement.
  37. I.e., they are not responsible for the accident only if their father did not leave them an obligation of property.
  38. When they slaughtered and ate it.
  39. Who says that the obligation is incurred when the accident happens. According to the opposing view, the father left them the obligation, which therefore was incurred at the time of borrowing.
  40. Where the father left them landed property, they are made to pay the full value of the meat since they ought to have been more careful.
  41. Lit., 'and this is the view of R. Papa'. The obligation is incurred with the accident, and at the time of the accident there was no borrower, since the person that borrowed the cow was dead.
  42. Who explains the Mishnah as dealing with a case where there was no warning. v. supra 32b.
  43. Who explains the Mishnah as representing the view of R. Meir, v. supra 33b.
  44. Lit., 'he puts'.
  45. The Mishnah.
  46. From paying the fine.
  47. Since the offence carries with it the penalty of lashes, there is no money payment even where lashes are not inflicted.
  48. R. Johanan and Resh Lakish.
  49. Or 'opinions', stated elsewhere.
  50. I.e., the payment of money.
  51. To make the money payment.
  52. From making the money payment.
  53. And so there is no death penalty, and therefore he pays.
  54. From making the money payment.
  55. Ex. XXI, 22.