But he vowed in respect of food?1 — Said R. Simeon b. Lakish: This refers to one who said, 'The benefit of your food be forbidden me.'2 But may it not mean that he is not to chew wheat [to a pulp] and apply it to his wound?3 — Raba replied: The Mishnah refers to one who said: 'Any benefit from you leading to the enjoyment of food be forbidden me.' R. Papa said: A sack for bringing fruit, an ass for bringing fruit, and even a mere basket, all lead to the enjoyment of food. R. Papa propounded: What of a horse for travelling [to a banquet] or a ring to appear in;4 or, what of passing over his land?5 — Come and hear: BUT HE MAY LEND HIM A SHIRT, RING, CLOAK AND EARRINGS. How is this to be understood? Shall I say it is not to appear in them, need this be stated?6 Hence it must mean to be seen in them, and it is taught that he may lend them to him! — No. After all, it does not mean to appear in them; but because the first clause teaches THE LATTER MAY NOT LEND HIM,7 the second clause teaches HE MAY LEND HIM.8
MISHNAH. AND WHATEVER IS NOT EMPLOYED IN THE PREPARATION OF FOOD, WHERE SUCH ARE HIRED OUT, IT IS FORBIDDEN.9
GEMARA. Hence the first clause applies even where such things are not hired. Which Tanna [rules thus]?10 — Said R. Adda b. Ahabah: It is R. Eliezer.11
MISHNAH. IF ONE IS UNDER A VOW NOT TO BENEFIT FROM HIS NEIGHBOUR, THE LATTER MAY PAY HIS SHEKEL,12 SETTLE HIS DEBTS, AND RETURN A LOST ARTICLE TO HIM. WHERE PAYMENT IS TAKEN FOR THIS,13 THE BENEFIT MUST ACCRUE TO HEKDESH.14
GEMARA. Thus we see that it is merely driving away a lion [from his neighbour's property],15 and permitted. Which Tanna [rules thus]? — Said R. Hoshaia: This is
Original footnotes renumbered.
- Which does not include these utensils.
- Instead of simply 'Your food be forbidden me'. The additional words, 'b. etc.' are understood to include something besides actual food, viz., utensils for its preparation.
- I.e., the longer form may imply that food is forbidden no matter how used, yet still be confined to actual foodstuffs.
- So as to be treated as an honoured guest.
- On the way to a feast.
- For then he does not benefit at all, and it is obvious that he may lend them to him.
- This must be taught; v. p. 100, n. 2.
- I.e., it is merely to round off the Mishnah, though it is self-evident.
- Even to one who is under a vow in respect of food as explained in the Gemara above, for the remission of the hiring fee is a benefit leading to the enjoyment of food.
- That even where the benefit is so trifling, since it can be borrowed without a fee, it is forbidden.
- V. p. 100, n. 5.
- There was an annual tax of half a shekel for the upkeep of the Temple; v. Shek. I, 1; Ex. XXX, 13.
- E.g., if he lost work through returning the article; v. B.M. 30b.
- V. Glos. This is discussed in the Gemara.
- I.e., he is merely performing a neighbourly action, without bestowing real benefit, for even if the other man does not pay the shekel, he still shares in the public sacrifices; also, when his debts are settled, the debtor personally receives nothing.
Hanan's view.1 Raba said: You may even say that it agrees with all: [We suppose that] the man who is interdicted by vow not to benefit from his neighbour was lent [money] without obligation to repay.2
What is [the ruling of] Hanan? — We learnt: If a man departed overseas, and another arose and supported his wife: Hanan said: He has lost his money.3 But the sons of the High priests4 disputed this and maintained: He must swear how much he expended and is reimbursed [by the husband]. R. Dosa b. Harkinas ruled as they did; whilst R. Johanan b. Zakkai said: Hanan has ruled well — it is as though he had placed his money upon a deer's horn.5
Now, Raba did not say as R. Hoshaia, because he interpreted our Mishnah to harmonize with all views. R. Hoshaia did not say as Raba: [to settle a debt] that need not be repaid is forbidden as a preventive measure on account of [a debt] that must be repaid.6
AND RETURN A LOST ARTICLE TO HIM. R. Ammi and R. Assi [differ thereon] — one said: This is only when the property of the finder7 is forbidden to the loser, so that in returning it to him, he returns what is his own.8 But if the property of the loser is forbidden to the finder, he may not return it, because he benefits him by R. Joseph's perutah.9 But the other maintained: Even if the finder may not benefit from the loser's property, he may return it, and as for R. Joseph's perutah, this is rare.10
Original footnotes renumbered.
- This is explained further on.
- The creditor having lent it to be repaid at the debtor's leisure (Ran). Therefore, when his neighbour repays his debt, he confers no benefit upon him. Similarly, he may pay his shekel only when he is not bound to pay it himself, e.g., if he had already sent it and it was lost on the road.
- He has no claim upon the husband.
- There was a special court of priests, and this may be referred to here; v. Keth. 104b.
- I.e., he cannot expect its return.
- Lest it be thought that the latter too may be settled.
- Lit., 'restorer'.
- So that the loser is not benefiting.
- Since when a person is engaged in the performance of one precept, he is exempt from another, the finder, when fulfilling this precept, may decline to give a perutah of charity to a poor man. This is referred to as R. Joseph's perutah, because he based a certain ruling upon this fact. B.K. 56b.
- One rarely avails himself of that privilege, hence the finder gains nothing.