ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous daf Bava Basra 27
BAVA BASRA 27 & 28 - these Dafim have been dedicated anonymously l'Iluy
Nishmas Tzirel Nechamah bas Tuvya Yehudah.
(a) We then suggest that the source for Ula's referring to Reuven's tree
(which grows within sixteen Amos of Shimon's field) as 'a thieving tree' and
exempting it from Bikurim, is perhaps another Mishnah in Shevi'is. The
Mishnah there states about three fully-grown trees belonging to three people
planted in the form of a triangle in an area of a Beis-Sa'ah - one is
permitted to plow the entire area on Erev Shevi'is right up to the Sh'mitah
year (like it ruled in the previous case).
(b) Each tree then requires - eight hundred and thirty-three and a third
square Amos (a third of two thousand five hundred square Amos).
(c) In spite of the fact that the difference between this Shiur and that of
Ula is only slight, this Mishnah cannot be Ula's source (only Ula gave an
approximate Shiur, sixteen Amos [half the square root of 1024], instead of
half the square root of 833 1/3, which would be just under fifteen Amos) -
because then Ula would be approximating to give a more lenient Shiur
(exempting a 'thieving tree' from Bikurim at sixteen Amos, even though the
tree does not feed at that distance and ought to be Chayav).
(a) The misunderstanding we have been guilty of until now regarding Ula's
Shiur of sixteen Amos that created the current discrepancy with the Mishnah
Shevi'is - is that we reckoned the sixteen Amos of which he speaks as a
square, when really we should have reckoned it as a circle.
(b) Based on the principle that a circle is a third less than a square, the
area required by a tree in which to feed from the ground is - seven hundred
and sixty-eight square Amos ...
(c) ... instead of eight hundred and thirty-three, a slight discrepancy
which works out to half an Amah less per tree, and this time, Ula is more
stringent than the Mishnah (giving a round figure of sixteen Amos to exempt
the 'thieving tree' from Bikurim, instead of sixteen and a half).
(a) Ula explains the Mishnah in Bikurim 'ha'Koneh Ilan *ve'Karka'o*, Meivi
ve'Korei' - to mean sixteen Amos of land in each direction.
(b) The Mishnah later in 'ha'Mocher es ha'Sefinah' rules 'ha'Koneh Sh'tei
Ilanos be'Soch shel Chavero, Meivi ve'Eino Korei' - because someone who
purchases two trees, does not automatically acquire the land in which they
are growing, and he cannot therefore say 'P'ri ha'Adamah Asher Nasata Li'.
(c) We extrapolate from there that someone who purchases three trees - does
acquire the land in which they are growing, and therefore brings Bikurim and
reads the Parshah.
(d) Ula will explain this Mishnah too - that he acquires sixteen Amos around
each tree (as he explained the previous one).
(a) Rebbi Akiva in the Mishnah in Pe'ah states - that even a 'Kol she'Hu'
(the smallest measure of land) is Chayav Pe'ah and Bikurim, and can be used
as a P'ruzbul.
(b) A P'ruzbul (which is based on a Takanah instituted by Hillel, to
encourage people to lend money to the needy even though the Sh'mitah-year
[which would cancel all debts] was close) comprises a Sh'tar which states
that the creditor hands all his debts to Beis-Din, and then collects them as
their Sheli'ach, provided the debtor owns land.
(a) The fourth case that the Tana includes in the Din of 'Kol she'Hu' is -
that of acquiring Metaltelin together with Karka (by means of the Kinyan
[e.g. Kesef] that he makes on the latter).
(b) To reconcile Ula with this Beraisa - we establish it (not by land with a
tree growing in it, but) by land growing wheat (which, together with barley,
is also subject to Bikurim).
(c) We prove this answer from the Lashon of the Mishnah itself - 'Kol
she'Hu', which is too small a Shiur for a tree to grow in.
(a) If a tree is growing half in Eretz Yisrael and half in Chutz la'Aretz,
Rebbi, in a Beraisa, rules that Tevel and Chulin are mixed together. Raban
Shimon ben Gamliel says - 'ha'Gadel be'Chiyuv, Chayav, ha'Gadel bi'Petur,
(b) The basis of their Machlokes is - whether we say 'Yesh B'reirah (Raban
Shimon ben Gamliel) or 'Ein B'reirah' (Rebbi).
(c) This Beraisa poses a Kashya on Ula - because even Rebbi holds that what
grew in Chutz la'Aretz is basically Patur from T'rumos (whereas according to
Ula, it ought to be Chayav, seeing as it nurtures from the soil of Eretz
(d) To reconcile the Beraisa with Ula, we establish it - when there is a
rock between the two borders that also divides the roots of the two trees,
which prevents them from feeding from each other.
(a) Despite the fact that the Beraisa speaks when there is a rock that
divides the roots of the tree into two, Rebbi nevertheless says 'Tevel
ve'Chulin Me'uravin Zeh ba'Zeh' - because above the rocks, the two halves of
the tree unite to become one.
(b) According to Raban Shimon ben Gamliel - since the two halves of the tree
feed from the ground separately at the roots, they continue to grow
separately all the way up.
(c) Abaye reconciles Ula with the Mishnah that we learned earlier 'Marchikin
es ha'Ilan min ha'Bor Esrim-ve'Chamesh Amah' - by pointing out that although
the roots of a tree grow up to a distance of twenty-five Amos, they do not
weaken the earth beyond a distance of sixteen Amos.
(a) Rav Dimi quoted Resh Lakish as having asked Rebbi Yochanan what the Din
will be if Reuven's tree is growing within sixteen Amos of Shimon's field
with regard to Bikurim. Rebbi Yochanan replied - that it is a 'thieving
tree, and is Patur from Bikurim.
(b) According to Ravin however - Rebbi Yochanan obligates the owner of even
such a tree to bring Bikurim ...
(c) ... because it is on that condition that Yehoshua distributed the land
to the tribes (not because he disagrees with Ula's principle that a tree
nurtures up to a distance of sixteen Amos).
(d) According to Ravin - Rebbi Yochanan incorporated the branches of
Reuven's tree that project over Shimon's field in his previous ruling.
(a) Our Mishnah grants Shimon the authority - to cut off the branches from
Reuven's tree that project over his field to the height that Shimon might
raise his plow-handle to strike the oxen whilst plowing.
(b) In the case of ...
1. ... branches of Reuven's carob or sycamore tree that project over
Shimon's field - he permits him to cut them off all the way to the top,
because the excessive shade caused by their numerous branches is bad for the
(c) A Mishkoles is - a string with a weight at the end that was used in
those days to gauge the straightness of the wall.
2. ... the branches of Reuven's tree that project over Shimon's
Beis-ha'Shalachin (a field that needs to be constantly watered) - he grants
him the same rights as in the previous case, because any shade is bad for a
(d) Aba Shaul grants Shimon the same rights as the Tana Kama in the previous
two cases, if Reuven's branches belong to any non fruit-bearing tree.
(a) We ask whether Aba Shaul refers to the Reisha or the Seifa. According to
the first side of the She'eilah, Aba Shaul permits Shimon to do with any non
fruit-bearing tree, what the Tana Kama permits him to do to a carob or
sycamore tree. According to the second side of the She'eilah - the Tana Kama
sauthorises Shimon to cut off all the branches that project over his
Beis-ha'Shalachin, whereas Aba Shaul restricts the concession to non
(b) The major difference between the two sides is - whether Aba Shaul comes
to be lenient with Shimon (the first side) or strict (the second side).
(c) And we resolve the She'eilah from a Beraisa - where Aba Shaul himself
rules like the first side of the She'eilah.
(d) And Rav Ashi proves this from the words of the Mishnah ('Kol Ilan S'rak
ke'Neged ha'Mishkoles') - where the word 'Kol' indicates that he comes to be
lenient with Shimon, and not to restrict the Tana Kama's concession.
(a) The Tana Kama orders Reuven to cut the branches of his tree that project
over the street, up to the height of a camel and its rider. Rebbi Yehudah
says - up to the height of a camel laden with flax or with bundles of
(b) Rebbi Shimon, who is the most stringent of all - orders Reuven to cut of
all the branches that project over the street.
(c) When we establish that our Mishnah holds that when it comes to Nizakin,
we assess things as they are now, we mean - that we permit Reuven to cut
down the offensive branches, even though we know that they will re-grow.
Alternatively, we might obligate him to chop down the entire tree, to
prevent all future damages.
(a) Resh Lakish connects our Mishnah with the opinion of Rebbi Eliezer in
the Mishnah in Chezkas ha'Batim, who permits digging a hold underneath the
Reshus ha'Rabim - provided a wagon laden with stones is able to pass over it
without causing the road to cave in (even though it is only a matter a time
before the worms take their toll and it caves in anyway).
(b) The Tana Kama - forbids digging a hole underneath the street.
(c) The basis of their Machlokes is - as we explained, whether we assess the
potential damage from the current short-term point of view (Rebbi Eliezer),
or whether in the long term (the Chachamim).
(d) Rebbi Yochanan establishes our Mishnah even like the Chachamim, who
might concede that, in our Mishnah, we make only a short-term assessment
(without taking into account the long-term damages) - since, it is easy to
see when Reuven's branches grow back (in which case, he will be ordered to
chop them off again; whereas in the Mishnah in Chezkas ha'Batim, they take
into account the possibility that the street will cave-in without advance
(a) The Tana Kama and Rebbi Yehudah argue over whether Reuven must cut off
the branches of his tree that project over the street, up to the height of a
camel and its rider or up to the height of a camel laden with flax or with
bundles of branches. We prove that the Shiur of the Rabbanan must be higher
than that of the Rabbanan - because otherwise, what would someone leading a
camel laden with flax do when passing the spot?
***** Hadran Alach 'Lo Yachpor' *****
(b) We do not ask in the same way what a rider will now do according to
Rebbi Yehudah - because all he needs to do is to bend down?
(c) Rebbi Shimon in the Mishnah permits cutting down all the branches
because of Tum'ah, which the Beraisa interprets to mean because of Ohel
ha'Tum'ah - by which he means that a k'Zayis of corpse might fall in the
street underneath the branches, rendering whoever passes underneath them,
(d) If not for the Beraisa - we might have thought that Rebbi Shimon is
referring to a raven that may drop a k'Zayis of corpse into the branches,
where it will get caught, and again, people passing underneath will become
Tamei (though this time without being aware that the Tum'ah is there,
whereas according to the Beraisa, they are able to see the Tum'ah).
(e) The difference between the two explanations is - if there is only one
branch. In that case, the first reason (the one that we follow) will still
apply, but not the second, since there is nowhere for the piece of corpse to