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Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Shabbath
R. Jannai's dictum being incorrect. But here they differ in this: R. Simeon b. Eleazar holds: an adult's small limb and a day-old infant's large limb are identical [in size]. While R. Nathan holds: Only an adult's small limb [creates culpability], but not the large limb of a day-old infant.1 What is our decision thereon? — Come and hear: For it was taught, R. Simeon b. Eleazar said: Oil, as much as is required to rub in a small limb of a day-old infant.2
WATER, ENOUGH FOR RUBBING COLLYRIUM. Abaye said, Consider: Whatever has a common use and an uncommon use, the Rabbis followed the common use, [even] in the direction of leniency; where it has two common uses, the Rabbis followed the common use [which leads to] stringency. [Thus,] in the case of wine the drinking thereof is common, whilst its employment as a remedy is uncommon; hence the Rabbis followed its drinking use in the direction of leniency.3 In the case of milk, the drinking4 thereof is common, whilst its employment as a remedy5 is uncommon: hence the Rabbis followed its drinking use in the direction of leniency. As for honey, both the eating thereof and its use as a remedy are common, [so] the Rabbis followed its use as a remedy in the direction of stringency.6 But in the case of water — consider: its drinking is common, whereas its use for healing is uncommon: why then did the Rabbis follow its use for healing in the direction of stringency? — Said Abaye: They learnt this with reference to Galilee.7 Raba said: You may even say that this refers to other places, thus agreeing with Samuel. For Samuel said: All liquids8 heal [eye sickness] but dim [the eyesight], save water, which heals without dimming.9
AND ALL OTHER LIQUIDS, A REBI'ITH. Our Rabbis taught; As for blood, and all [other] kinds of liquids, [the standard is] a rebi'ith. R. Simeon b. Eleazar said: Blood, as much as is required for painting one eye, because a cataract [of the eye] is painted [with blood]. And which [blood] is that? The blood of a wildfowl. R. Simeon b. Gamaliel said: Blood, as much as is required for painting one eye, because a white spot in the eye is painted [with blood]. And with what is that? with the blood of bats.10 And your token is: within for within, without for without.11 Now this applies only to him who carries it out; but if one puts it away, no matter how little, he is liable.12 R. Simeon said: This applies only to one who puts it away, but he who carries it out is culpable only when there is a rebi'ith. And the Sages agree with R. Simeon that if one carries out waste water into the street, the standard thereof is a rebi'ith.
The Master said: 'Now this applies only to him who carries it out; but if one puts it away, no matter how little, [he is liable].' And he who puts it away. does he not carry it out?13 Said Abaye: The reference here is to an apprentice to whom his master said, 'Go, and clear me a place for a meal.' Now, if he goes and clears out [into the street] something that is valued by all, he is guilty on its account; something that is not valued by all: if his master had put it away,14 he is guilty on its account; if not, he is not guilty.15
The Master said: 'And the Sages agree with R. Simeon that if one carries out waste water into the street, the standard thereof is a rebi'ith.' For what is waste water fit?16 Said R. Jeremiah: To knead clay therewith. But it was taught: Clay, [the standard is] as much as is required for making the hole of a smelting pot?17 There is no difficulty: in the latter case it is kneaded, but in the former it is not [already] kneaded, because no man troubles to knead clay [only] for making the hole of a smelting pot.
MISHNAH. HE WHO CARRIES OUT CORD, [THE STANDARD IS] AS MUCH AS IS REQUIRED FOR MAKING A HANDLE FOR A BASKET; A REED CORD, AS MUCH AS IS REQUIRED FOR MAKING A HANGER FOR A SIEVE OR A BASKET-SIEVE. R. JUDAH SAID: AS MUCH AS IS REQUIRED FOR TAKING THE MEASURE OF A CHILD'S SHOE. PAPER, LARGE ENOUGH TO WRITE A TAX-COLLECTOR'S RECEIPT ON IT.18 (AND HE WHO CARRIES OUT A TAX-COLLECTOR'S RECEIPT IS LIABLE.)
ERASED PAPER,1 AS MUCH AS IS REQUIRED TO WRAP ROUND A SMALL PHIAL OF SPIKENARD OIL; SKIN, FOR MAKING AN AMULET; PARCHMENT, FOR WRITING THEREON THE SHORTEST PASSAGE OF THE TEFILLIN, WHICH IS 'HEAR O ISRAEL,':2 INK, FOR WRITING TWO LETTERS; STIBIUM,3 FOR PAINTING ONE EYE; PASTE, FOR PUTTING ON THE TOP OF A LIME BOARD [SHAFSHAF];4 PITCH AND SULPHUR, FOR MAKING A PERFORATION [THEREIN];5 WAX, FOR PUTTING OVER A SMALL HOLE;6 CLAY, FOR MAKING A HOLE IN A GOLD REFINER'S POT.7 R. JUDAH SAID: FOR MAKING A [TRIPOD'S] PEG.8 BRAN, FOR PUTTING ON THE MOUTH OF A GOLD REFINER'S POT; LIME,9 FOR SMEARING THE SMALLEST OF GIRLS.10 R. JUDAH SAID: ENOUGH TO PRODUCE A HAIR-CROWN [KALKAL].11 R. NEHEMIAH SAID: ENOUGH FOR MAKING SIDE-CURLS [ONDAFE].12
GEMARA. For a cord too, let one be culpable on account of as much as is required to make a hanger for a sieve or a basketsieve? — Since it chafes the utensil, people do not make it [thus].13
Our Rabbis taught: As for palm leaves, the standard is as much as is required for making a handle for a basket, an Egyptian basket. As for bast; Others say:14 as much as is required for putting on the opening of a small funnel for straining wine. Fat; as much as is required for greasing under a small cake. And what size is that? — As [large as] a sela'. But it was taught, As [large as] a dried fig? Both are the same standard. Soft rags, as much as is required for making a small ball. Anti what size is that? As [large as] a nut.
PAPER, LARGE ENOUGH TO WRITE A TAX-COLLECTOR'S RECEIPT ON IT. It was taught: How much is a tax-collector's receipt? Two letters.15 But the following contradicts this: If one carries out smooth [blank] paper. if large enough for writing two letters thereon, he is culpable; if not, he is not culpable?16 — Said R. Shesheth: What is meant by 'two letters'? Two letters of a tax-collector's receipt. Raba said: [It means] two letters of ours, together with a margin for holding which is the equivalent of a tax-collector's receipt.
An objection is raised: If one carries out erased paper or a receipted note; if its blank portion is large enough for two letters to be written thereon, or if the whole is sufficient for wrapping round the mouth of a small phial of spikenard oil, he is culpable; but if not, he is not culpable. As for R. Shesheth, who explained, What is meant by 'two letters'? two letters of a tax-collector's receipt, it is well.17 But according to Raba, who said that it means two letters of ours together with a margin for holding, which is the equivalent of a tax-collector's receipt — surely here no margin for holding is required?18 This is a difficulty.
Our Rabbis taught: If one carries out a tax-collector's receipt before having shown it to the collector, he is culpable;19 after having shewn it to the collector, he is not culpable.20 R. Judah said: Even after showing it to the collector, he is culpable, because he still needs it. Wherein do they differ? Abaye said: They differ in respect to collectors' runners.21 Raba said: They differ in respect to the higher and the lesser collectors.22 R. Ashi said: They [even] differ in respect of one tax-collector, because he needs it [the document] for showing to the second, so that he can say to him, 'See, I am a man [exempted] by the collector.'23
Our Rabbis taught: If one carries out a note of debt, if before it has been settled, he is culpable; if after it has been settled, he is not culpable. R. Judah said: Even after settlement he is culpable, because he needs it. Wherein do they differ? R. Joseph said: They differ as to whether it is forbidden to keep a settled note. The Rabbis maintain: It is forbidden to keep a settled note;24 while R. Judah holds: One may keep a settled note.25 Abaye said: All hold that a settled note may not be kept; but here they differ as to whether a note requires confirmation [even] when he [the debtor] admits that it was [validly] written. The first Tanna holds: Even when [the debtor] admits that a note [was validly] written, it must be confirmed.26 R. Judah holds: When [the debtor] admits that a note was [validly] written, it need not be confirmed. And what is the meaning of 'if before it has been settled' and 'if after it has been settled'?
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