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Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Sanhedrin
1 possesses kin on his mother's side but not on his father's side. E.g., if he married his sister by his mother, [born before his mother's conversion, and who subsequently became converted too,] he must divorce her; by his father, he may keep her; his father's sister by his father's mother, he must divorce her; by his father's father, he may keep her; his mother's sister by her mother, he must renounce her; by her father — R. Meir ruled that he must divorce her, but the Sages maintained that he may keep her; for R. Meir held that all forbidden degrees of consanguinity on the mother's side must be divorced; on the father's side may be kept.2 He may marry his brother's wife,3 his paternal uncle's wife, and all other relations by marriage are permitted to him, this including his father's wife. If he married a woman and her daughter4 he retains one and must divorce the other. But in the first place, he must not marry them.5 If his wife died, he may marry his mother-in-law; others say that he may not!6 — Rab Judah said, There is no difficulty: one dictum is by R. Meir according to R. Eliezer, and one is by R. Meir according to R. Akiba.7 For it has been taught: Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother;8 R. Eliezer said: His father means 'his father's sister'; his mother, 'his mother's sister'.9 R. Akiba said: His father means 'his father's wife'; his mother is literally meant. And he shall cleave, but not to a male;10 to his wife, but not to his neighbour's wife;11 and they shall be as one flesh, applying to those that can become one flesh, thus excluding cattle and beasts, which cannot become one flesh with man.12
The Master stated: 'R. Eliezer said: His father means 'his father's sister'. But may it not mean his father literally?13 — This is forbidden by and he shall cleave, but not to a male. But perhaps it means 'his father's wife'? — That is taught by to his wife, but not to his neighbour's wife [which includes his father's]. But perhaps it forbids her even after his father's death? — It must be similar to his mother: just as his mother is not his relation by marriage, so his father must refer to a non-marriage relationship.
'His mother means, his mother's sister'. But may it not be literally meant? — That is taught by to his wife, but not to his neighbour's wife. But perhaps it forbids her even after his father's death? — It must be similar to his father: just as his father is not literally meant, so his mother is not literally meant.
'R. Akiba said: His father, means, his father's wife'. But perhaps it is literally meant? — That is taught by and he shall cleave, but not to a male. If so, is not his father's wife taught by to his wife, but not to his neighbour's wife? — That teaches that she is forbidden even after his father's death.
'His mother is literally meant'. But is this not taught by to his wife, but not to his neighbour's wife'? — This refers to his mother who was violated by his father.14
What are the grounds of their dispute? — R. Eliezer is of the opinion
1 can his father and his mother bear similar interpretations.2 But R. Akiba prefers to interpret his father as his father's wife, who is designated as the nakedness of his father, rather than his father's sister, who, is designated as his father's kin, not his father's nakedness.3
Come and hear: And yet indeed she is my sister; she is the daughter of my father, but not of my mother.7 Does not this prove that his mother's daughter is forbidden?8 — Now, is this logical: was she then his sister? She was his brother's daughter, and therefore, whether by his father or mother,9 permitted to him. But Abram declared to him [i.e., Abimelech] thus: I am fraternally related to her, [i.e., she is my brother's daughter] on my father's side [i.e., my brother by my father] but not on my mother's side.10
Come and hear! Why did not Adam marry his daughter?11 So that Cain should marry his sister, as it is written, For I said, the world shall be built up by grace.12 But otherwise, she would have been forbidden [to Cain]?13 — Once however that it was permitted, it remained so.
R. Huna said: A heathen may marry his daughter. But should you ask, If so, why did not Adam marry his daughter? — In order that Cain might marry his sister, that the world might be built up by grace. Others give this version: R. Huna said: A heathen may not marry his daughter; the proof being that Adam did not marry his daughter. But that proof is fallacious: The reason was that Cain should marry his sister, so that the world should be built up by [Adam's] grace.
R. Hisda said: A heathen slave [owned by a Jew] may marry his daughter and his mother, for he has lost the status of a heathen, but has not yet attained that of a Jew.14 When R. Dimi came,15 he said in the name of R. Eleazar in the name of R. Hanina: A heathen who allotted a bondwoman to his slave [for concubinage] and then took her for himself is executed on her account. From when [is she regarded as the particular concubine of that slave]? — R. Nahman said: When she is referred to as so and so's mistress.16 When is she
free again [to others]? — R. Huna said: From the time that she goes bareheaded in the streets.17
R. Eleazar said in R. Hanina's name: If a heathen had an unnatural connection with his wife, he incurs guilt; for it is written, and he shall cleave, which excludes unnatural intercourse.18 Raba objected: Is there anything for which a Jew is not punishable and a heathen is?19 But Raba said thus: A heathen who violates his neighbour's wife unnaturally is free from punishment — Why so? — [Scripture saith:] To his wife, but not to his neighbour's; and he shall cleave, which excludes unnatural intercourse.20
R. Hanina said: If a heathen smites a Jew, he is worthy of death,21 for it is written, And he looked this way and that way, and when he saw that there was no man, he slew the Egyptian.22 R. Hanina also said: He who smites an Israelite on the jaw, is as though he had thus assaulted the Divine Presence; for it is written, one who smiteth23 man [i.e. an Israelite] attacketh24 the Holy One.25
(Mnemonic: lifts, his servant, Sabbath.)26 Resh Lakish said: He who lifts his hand against his neighbour, even if he did not smite him, is called a wicked man as it is written, And he said unto the wicked man, Wherefore wouldst thou smite thy fellow?27 'Wherefore hast thou smiteth is not said, but wherefore wouldst thou smite, shewing that though he had not smitten him yet, he was termed a wicked man. Ze'iri said in R. Hanina's name: He is called a sinner, for it is written, But if not, I will take it by force;28 and it is further written, Wherefore the sin of the young men was very great before the Lord.29 R. Huna said: His hand should be cut off, as it is written, Let the uplifted arm be broken.30 R. Huna had the hand cut off [of one who was accustomed to strike other people].31 R. Eleazar said: The only thing to be done with him is to bury him, as it is written, And a man of [uplifted] arm, for him is the earth.32 R. Eleazar also said: The earth was given only to the strong.33 as it is said, But as for the mighty man, for him is the earth.34 Resh Lakish said also: What is the meaning of the verse, He that serveth his land shall be satisfied with bread?35 If one enslaves himself to his land [continually toiling thereon] he shall be satisfied with bread: if not, he shall not be satisfied with bread. Resh Lakish also said: A heathen who keeps a day of rest, deserves death, for it is written, And a day and a night they shall not rest,36 and a master has said: Their prohibition is their death sentence.37 Rabina said: Even if he rested on a Monday. Now why is this not included in the seven Noachian laws? — Only negative injunctions are enumerated, not positive ones.38
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