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01 - Nidah (the Menstruant

01 - Nidah (the Menstruant

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Published by Rene Scherger
Part six: Assemblage of whole Rodkinson edition of Talmud
Part six: Assemblage of whole Rodkinson edition of Talmud

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Published by: Rene Scherger on Jun 15, 2010
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Talmud - Mas. Nidah 2a
 
Talmud - Mas. Nidah 2a
C H A P T E R I MISHNAH. . SHAMMAI RULED: FOR ALL WOMEN
1
IT SUFFICES [TO RECKON] THEIR[PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM THE] TIME [OF THEIR DISCOVERING THE FLOW].
2
HILLEL RULED: [THEIR PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS IS TO BE RECKONEDRETROSPECTIVELY] FROM THE [PREVIOUS] EXAMINATION TO THE [LAST]EXAMINATION,
3
EVEN [IF THE INTERVAL EXTENDED] FOR MANY DAYS. THE SAGES,HOWEVER, RULED: [THE LAW IS] NEITHER IN AGREEMENT WITH THE OPINION OFTHE FORMER
4
NOR IN AGREEMENT WITH THAT OF THE LATTER,
5
BUT [THE WOMENARE DEEMED TO HAVE BEEN UNCLEAN] DURING [THE PRECEDING] TWENTY-FOURHOURS
6
WHEN THIS
7
LESSENS THE PERIOD FROM THE [PREVIOUS] EXAMINATION TOTHE [LAST] EXAMINATION, AND DURING THE PERIOD FROM THE [PREVIOUS]EXAMINATION TO THE [LAST] EXAMINATION WHEN THIS
8
LESSENS THE PERIOD OFTWENTY-FOUR HOURS. FOR ANY WOMAN WHO HAS A SETTLED PERIOD IT SUFFICES [TO RECKON HERPERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME SHE DISCOVERS THE FLOW: AND IF AWOMAN USES TESTING-RAGS WHEN
9
SHE HAS MARITAL INTERCOURSE, THIS ISINDEED
10
LIKE AN EXAMINATION WHICH LESSENS EITHER THE PERIOD OF THE[PAST] TWENTY-FOUR HOURS OR THE PERIOD FROM THE [PREVIOUS] EXAMINATIONTO THE [LAST] EXAMINATION. HOW [IS ONE TO UNDERSTAND THE RULING THAT]
11
IT SUFFICES [TO RECKON HER PERIOD OF UNCLEANNESS FROM] THE TIME SHEDISCOVERS THE FLOW’? IF SHE WAS SITTING ON A BED AND WAS OCCUPIED WITHRITUALLY CLEAN OBJECTS
12
AND, HAVING LEFT THEM, OBSERVED A FLOW, SHE ISRITUALLY UNCLEAN WHILE THE OBJECTS
13
REMAIN RITUALLY CLEAN. ALTHOUGH THEY
14
HAVE LAID DOWN THAT SHE
15
CONVEYS UNCLEANNESS FOR APERIOD OF TWENTY-FOUR HOURS [RETROSPECTIVELY]
16
SHE COUNTS [THE SEVENDAYS OF HER MENSTRUATION]
17
ONLY FROM THE TIME SHE OBSERVED THE FLOW. GEMARA. What is Shammai's reason?
 
18
— He is of the opinion that a woman
19
should bepresumed to enjoy
20
her usual status, and the status of the woman
21
was one of cleanness.
22
AndHillel?
23
— When is it said that an object is presumed to possess its usual status? Only when theunfavourable condition
24
is not internal;
25
but as regards a woman,____________________
(1)
In respect of menstrual uncleanness.
(2)
It being assumed that up to that moment there was no vestige of blood even in the ante-chamber (cf. Mishnah infra40a). Hence only objects that were touched by the woman after the discovery become ritually unclean. All objectstouched prior to that moment remain clean.
(3)
When she discovered the discharge. If the last, for instance, took place at 5 p.m. on a Thursday and the previous oneat 8 a.m. on the preceding Sunday, all objects touched since the Sunday examination are deemed to be ritually uncleanbecause it is assumed that some blood, prevented from leaving the body by the walls of the womb, may have made itsway into the ante-chamber immediately after that examination.
(4)
Shammai, whose ruling is too lenient.
(5)
Hillel, who is too restrictive, since blood could not well be retained in the ante-chamber for a very long time.
(6)
Me'eth le'eth, lit., ‘from time to time’.
(7)
An interval of more than twenty-four hours having intervened between the two examinations.
(8)
The two examinations having taken place within twenty-four hours.
(9)
Before and after.
(10)
Lit., ‘behold this’.
 
(11)
In the case of ‘ANY WOMAN WHO HAS A SETTLED PERIOD (supra).
(12)
In the preparation, for instance, of foodstuffs.
(13)
The bed, and the foodstuffs which she handled.
(14)
The Sages.
(15)
A woman who had no settled period.
(16)
From the time she observed the flow.
(17)
Prescribed in Lev. XV, 19.
(18)
For his ruling in the first clause of our Mishnah.
(19)
About whom it is uncertain when her flow began.
(20)
Lit., ‘cause to stand . . . upon’.
(21)
Spoken of in our Mishnah.
(22)
Since she was occupied with ritually clean things.
(23)
How, in view of Shammai's reason, can he maintain his ruling.
(24)
Which might impair its status.
(25)
But is due to some external cause. MS.M. adds, ‘as, for instance, when it is doubtful whether one did, or did nottouch (an unclean object)’.
Talmud - Mas. Nidah 2b
 
Talmud - Mas. Nidah 2b
 
Talmud - Mas. Nidah 2b
since what she observes [is a discharge] from her own body, it cannot be held that she is presumed tohave her usual status. Wherein, however, does this
1
essentially differ
2
from that of a ritual bath of which we learnt: If aritual bath
3
was measured and found lacking, all purifications that have heretofore been effectedthrough it, whether it was in a public
4
or in a private domain,
5
are regarded
6
as unclean?
7
Accordingto Shammai
8
the difficulty arises from ‘heretofore’; while according to Hillel the difficulty arises,does it not, from the certainty; for, whereas in the case of the twenty-four hours’ period
9
of themenstruant [any terumah
10
she touched] is only held in suspense, it being neither eaten nor burned,
11
here
12
the uncleanness is regarded as a certainty?
13
— The reason
14
there
15
is that it may bepostulated that the unclean person shall be regarded as being in his presumptive status
16
andassumed
17
not to have performed proper immersion.
18
On the contrary! Why not postulate that theritual bath shall be regarded as being in its presumptive status of validity and assume that it was notlacking?
19
— Surely a lacking [bath] is before you. But in this case also,
20
is not blood before you?— She has only just now observed it.
21
In that case
22
too, is it not
23
lacking only just now?
24
What a comparison!
25
In that case
22
it might well be presumed that the water was graduallydiminishing,
26
but can it here also be presumed that she was gradually observing the flow?
27
What an objection is this! Is it not possible that she observed the blood only when it was coming inprofusion?
28
— In the former case
29
there are two unfavourable factors
30
while in the latter
31
there isonly one unfavourable factor.
32
Wherein, however,
33
does this
31
differ from the case of the jugconcerning which we have learnt:
34
If one tested
35
a wine jug for the purpose of periodically takingfrom it terumah [for wine kept in other jugs]
36
and, subsequently,
37
it was found to containvinegar,
38
all
39
three days it is certain,
40
and after that it is doubtful.
41
Now does not this
42
present anobjection against Shammai?
43
— The reason there
44
is that it can be postulated that the tebel
45
shallbe regarded as having its presumptive status, and then it may be presumed that it had not beenritually prepared.
46
On the contrary! Why not postulate that the wine be regarded as having itspresumptive status
47
and then it might be assumed that it had not become sour? — Surely it standssour before you. But in that case also
48
is there not blood before you? — She has only just nowobserved it. But in that case too
49
is it not sour only just now? — What a comparison! In the lattercase
49
it might well be presumed that the wine turned sour by degrees,
50
but can it also be said in theformer case
48
that she observed the flow by degrees?
51
— What an objection is this! Is it not possiblethat she observed the blood only when it came in profusion? — In the former case
49
there are twounfavourable factors
52
while in the latter
48
there is only one such factor.
53
 
 An incongruity, however, was pointed out between the case of the jug
 
54
and that of the ritualbath:
55
Wherein lies the essential difference between the two
56
that in the latter case
57
[theretrospective uncleanness is regarded as] a certainty while in that of the former
58
[the uncleanness of the terumah is deemed] doubtful? — R. Hanina of Sura replied: Who is the author [of the rulingconcerning the] jug? R. Simeon, who in respect of a ritual bath also regards [the retrospectiveuncleanness] as a matter of doubt; for it was taught:
59
If a ritual bath was measured and foundlacking all purifications heretofore effected through it whether it was in a public or in a privatedomain, are regarded as unclean.
60
R. Simeon ruled: In a public domain they are regarded as cleanbut in a private domain they are regarded as being in suspense.
61
____________________
(1)
The case of the menstruant.
(2)
Both according to Shammai and Hillel.
(3)
Which must contain a minimum of forty se'ah of water.
(4)
Where a case of doubtful uncleanness is elsewhere regarded as clean.
(5)
Where a doubtful case is regarded as unclean (cf. prev. n.).
(6)
Since the bath is now ritually invalid.
(7)
Mik. II, 2.
(8)
Who ruled that the period of uncleanness of menstruant women begins FROM THE TIME OF THEIR DISCOVERYOF THE FLOW and not retrospectively.
(9)
According to the Sages; or the interval between her last and previous examinations according to Hillel (v. ourMishnah).
(10)
V. Glos.
(11)
As explained infra 6a.
(12)
In the case of the ritual bath, where it is categorically stated ‘are retrospectively unclean’.
(13)
And the terumah must be burned.
(14)
For the restrictions.
(15)
The case of the ritual bath.
(16)
Of uncleanness, which before valid immersion is a certainty.
(17)
On account of the discovered invalidity of the ritual bath he used.
(18)
Since the invalidity may have begun at the time the immersion took place.
(19)
At the time of the immersion.
(20)
That of the menstruant.
(21)
Hence there is no need to assume that the flow began any earlier.
(22)
Ritual bath.
(23)
As far as is known.
(24)
Why then should it be assumed to have been lacking earlier?
(25)
Lit., ‘thus, now’.
(26)
So that the presumptive state of validity has long ago been impaired. And since it is not known when the processbegan the restrictive ruling given is well justified.
(27)
Obviously not. Hence it may well be assumed that the flow began only at the moment when it was discovered.
(28)
While in fact a particle of it which is quite sufficient to cause uncleanness (cf. infra 40) may have been in theantechamber long before she was aware of any flow.
(29)
That of the ritual bath.
(30)
The assumption that the unclean person was in his confirmed status of uncleanness and the lacking condition of thebath.
(31)
The case of the menstruant.
(32)
The present observation of the blood. Since against this factor there is the favourable one of the woman's previouscondition of confirmed cleanness it may well be assumed that the flow began not earlier than the moment when it wasobserved.
(33)
According to Shammai.
(34)
What follows is a Baraitha (Tosef. Ter. IV) and is quoted here as Mishnah. This is not an isolated instance. V.

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