SHOULD HIS WIFE MISCARRY, HE DOES NOT BECOME A NAZIRITE. R. SIMEON SAID: [IN THIS CASE] HE MUST SAY, IF IT WAS A VIABLE CHILD, I AM A NAZIRITE OBLIGATORILY; OTHERWISE I UNDERTAKE A NAZIRITESHIP VOLUNTARILY.'1 SHOULD [HIS WIFE] LATER BEAR A CHILD,2 HE THEN BECOMES A NAZIRITE. R. SIMEON SAID: HE SHOULD SAY, 'IF THE FIRST WAS A VIABLE CHILD, THE FIRST [NAZIRITESHIP] WAS OBLIGATORY, AND THE PRESENT ONE WILL BE VOLUNTARY, OTHERWISE, THE FIRST ONE WILL HAVE BEEN VOLUNTARY, AND THE PRESENT ONE IS OBLIGATORY.
GEMARA. For what purpose are we told this?3 — Because of the subsequent clause, viz.: — IF IT BE A DAUGHTER, OR SEXLESS, OR AN HERMAPHRODITE, HE DOES NOT BECOME A NAZIRITE. But is not this obvious? — It might be thought that his meaning was 'If I beget a child'4 and so we are told that this is not so.
SHOULD HE SAY 'WHEN I SHALL HAVE A CHILD' etc.: But is not this obvious? — It might be thought that he only meant the child that is reckoned amongst men,5 and so we are told [that any child is meant].
SHOULD HIS WIFE MISCARRY HE DOES NOT BECOME A NAZIRITE. The author of this statement is the R. Judah of the heap of grain.6
R. SIMEON SAID: HE SHOULD SAY, 'IF THE CHILD WAS VIABLE, THEN I AM A NAZIRITE OBLIGATORILY; OTHERWISE I UNDERTAKE NAZIRITESHIP VOLUNTARILY.' — R. Abba put the following question to R. Huna: Should a man say, 'I undertake to become a nazirite when I shall have a son', and his wife miscarries, and he set aside a sacrifice,7 and then his wife gave birth [to a son],8 what is the law?9 From whose standpoint [was this problem propounded]? If from the standpoint of R. Simeon, what problem is there? Does not R. Simeon say that wherever there is a doubt in questions concerning naziriteship we adopt the more stringent ruling?10 — It must therefore be from the standpoint of R. Judah, who maintains that in questions concerning naziriteship, if there is a doubt the more lenient ruling is adopted. The query then is whether [the animal] became sacred or not,11 But what [practical] difference can it make [which it is]?12 — [There would be the question of] whether he might shear it, or work with it.13 The problem was unsolved.
Ben Rehumi put the following question to Abaye: [Should a man say,] 'I undertake to become a nazirite when I shall have a son, and his companion, hearing this, add 'And I undertake likewise,' what would be the law? Is the reference to his words14 or to him himself?15 Should your finding be that the reference is to him himself,16 then if a man should say, 'I undertake to become a nazirite when I shall have a son,' and his companion, hearing this, add 'I too' what would be the law? Is the reference to himself, I or does he mean, 'I am as much your good friend as you are yourself'?17 Should your finding be that whenever the other is present
Nazir 13bhe would be ashamed [to refer to himself],1 then if a man should say, 'I undertake to be a nazirite when so-and-so has a son,' and his companion, hearing this, add 'I too,' what would be the law? Would it be said then that because the other is not present he is referring to himself,2 or does he mean, 'I am as good a friend to him as you are'?3
The problem was left unsolved.
MISHNAH. [IF A MAN SAYS,] 'I INTEND TO BE A NAZIRITE [NOW] AND A NAZIRITE WHEN I SHALL HAVE A SON', AND BEGINS TO RECKON HIS OWN [NAZIRITESHIP]. AND THEN HAS A SON BORN TO HIM, HE IS TO COMPLETE HIS OWN NAZIRITESHIP] AND THEN RECKON THE ONE ON ACCOUNT OF HIS SON. [IF HE SAYS,] 'I INTEND TO BE A NAZIRITE WHEN I SHALL HAVE A SON, AND A NAZIRITE [ON MY OWN ACCOUNT]', AND HE BEGINS TO RECKON HIS OWN [NAZIRITESHIP] AND THEN HAS A SON BORN TO HIM, HE MUST INTERRUPT HIS OWN [NAZIRITESHIP], RECKON THE ONE ON ACCOUNT OF HIS SON, AND THEN COMPLETE HIS OWN.
GEMARA. Raba put the following question. If he should say, 'I wish to be a nazirite4 after twenty days time,' and then 'For one hundred days commencing now', what would be the law? Seeing that these hundred days will not be complete in twenty, are they to be inoperative [for the time being]5 or, seeing that there will remain sufficient time afterwards6 for the hair to grow long,7 do they come into operation [immediately]?8
Why does [Raba] not [first] raise the question of a [second] naziriteship of short duration?9 It is a problem within a problem that he has raised:
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