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Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Kethuboth
which is her handiwork1 R. Akiba ruled [that it belongs] to herself, how much more so her find? For we learned: [If a woman said to her husband,] 'Konam, if I do aught for your mouth', he need not invalidate her vow;2 R. Akiba, however, said: He must invalidate it, since she might do more work than is due to him!3 — Reverse then: A wife's find belongs to her husband, but R. Akiba ruled [that it belonged] to herself. But surely, when Rabin came4 he stated in the name of R. Johanan: In respect of a surplus5 obtained through no undue exertion all6 agree that [it belongs to the] husband, and they only differ in respect of a surplus5 obtained through undue exertion; the first Tanna being of the opinion [that even this belongs] to her husband while R. Akiba maintains [that it belongs] to herself!7 — R. Papa replied: A find is like a surplus gained through undue exertion,8 [concerning which there is] a difference of opinion between R. Akiba and the Rabbis.
R. Papa raised the question: What is the law where she performed for him two [kinds of work] simultaneously?9 Rabina raised the question: What is the ruling where she did three or four [kinds of work]10 simultaneously? — These must remain undecided.11
[ANY COMPENSATION FOR] INDIGNITY OR BLEMISH [THAT MAY HAVE BEEN INFLICTED UPON] HER. Raba son of R. Hanan demurred:12 Now then,13 if a man insulted his fellow's mare would he also have to pay him [compensation for the] indignity? But is a horse then susceptible to insult?14 — This, however, [is the objection:] If a man spat on his fellow's garment would he15 also have to pay him [compensation for this] indignity? And should you say that [the ruling] is really so,16 surely [it can be retorted] we have learned: If a man spat so that the spittle fell upon another person, or uncovered the head of a woman, or removed a cloak from a person he must pay four hundred zuz;17 and R. Papa explained: This has been taught [to apply] only [where it touched] him18 but if it touched his garment only [the offender] is exempt!19 — [An insult] to his garment involves no indignity to him, [but an insult to] his wife does involve an indignity to him.20
Said Rabina to R. Ashi: Now then,21 If a man insulted a poor man of a good family where all the members of the family are involved in the indignity, must he also pay [compensation for] indignity to all the members of the family?22 — The other replied: There23 it is not their own persons [that are insulted]. Here, however, one's wife is [like] one's own body.
MISHNAH. IF A MAN UNDERTOOK TO GIVE A FIXED SUM OF MONEY TO HIS SON-IN-LAW AND HIS SON-IN-LAW DIED,24 HE25 MAY, THE SAGES RULED, SAY26 'I WAS WILLING TO GIVE [THE MENTIONED SUM] TO YOUR BROTHER BUT I AM UNWILLING TO GIVE IT TO YOU'.27
IF A WOMAN UNDERTOOK TO BRING HER HUSBAND28 ONE THOUSAND DENARII HE MUST ASSIGN TO HER29 A CORRESPONDING SUM OF FIFTEEN MANEH.30 AS A CORRESPONDING SUM FOR APPRAISED GOODS,31 HOWEVER, HE ASSIGNS29 ONE FIFTH LESS.32 [IF A HUSBAND IS REQUESTED TO ENTER IN HIS WIFE'S KETHUBAH:] 'GOODS ASSESSED AT ONE MANEH', AND THESE ARE IN FACT WORTH A MANEH,33 HE CAN HAVE [A CLAIM FOR] ONE MANEH ONLY.34 [OTHERWISE,35 IF HE IS REQUESTED TO ENTER IN THE KETHUBAH:] 'GOODS ASSESSED AT A MANEH', HIS WIFE MUST GIVE HIM [GOODS OF THE ASSESSED VALUE35 OF] THIRTY-ONE SELA'S AND A DENAR,36 AND IF 'AT FOUR HUNDRED [ZUZ]', SHE MUST GIVE [HIM GOODS VALUED35 AT] FIVE HUNDRED [ZUZ.]37 WHATEVER
A BRIDEGROOM ASSIGNS [TO HIS WIFE IN HER KETHUBAH] HE ASSIGNS AT ONE FIFTH LESS [THAN THE APPRAISED VALUE].
GEMARA. Our Rabbis taught: There was no need to state that where the first1 was a scholar and the second an 'am ha-'arez [the father-in-law] can say, 'I WAS WILLING TO GIVE [THE MENTIONED SUM] TO YOUR BROTHER BUT I AM UNWILLING TO GIVE IT TO YOU, but even where the first was 'am ha-'arez and the second a scholar he may also say so.
IF A WOMAN UNDERTOOK TO BRING TO HER HUSBAND ONE THOUSAND DENARII etc. Are not these2 the same as the case in the first clause?3 — He taught [first concerning a] large assessment4 and then he taught also about a smaller assessment;5 he taught about his assessment6 and he also taught about her assessment.7
M I S H N A H. IF A WOMAN UNDERTOOK TO BRING TO HER HUSBAND8 READY MONEY, EVERY SELA'9 OF HERS COUNTS10 AS SIX DENARII.11 THE BRIDEGROOM MUST UNDERTAKE [TO GIVE HIS WIFE]12 TEN DENARII FOR HER [PERFUME]13 BASKET IN RESPECT OF EACH MANEH.14 R. SIMEON B. GAMALIEL SAID: IN ALL MATTERS THE LOCAL USAGE SHALL BE FOLLOWED.
GEMARA. This,15 surely, is exactly [the same ruling as] 'He must assign to her a corresponding sum of fifteen maneh'.16 — He taught first about a major transaction17 and then taught about a minor transaction.18 And [both rulings were] necessary. For had that of the major transaction only been taught it might have been assumed [that it applied to this only] because the profit [it brings in] is large but not to a minor transaction the profit from which is small; [hence it was] necessary [to state the latter]. And had we been informed of that of the minor transaction only it might have been said [to apply to this only] because the expenses and responsibility19 are small but not to a large transaction where the expenses and responsibility are great; [hence it was] necessary [to state the former].
THE BRIDEGROOM MUST UNDERTAKE [TO GIVE HIS WIFE] TEN DENARII FOR HER BASKET. What is meant by BASKET?
r. Ashi replied: The perfume basket. R. Ashi further stated: This ruling applies to Jerusalem20 only.
R. Ashi enquired: [Is the prescribed perfume allowance21 made] in respect of each maneh valued or each maneh for which [obligation has been] accepted?22 [And even]23 if you could find [some reason] for stating: ['In respect of each] maneh for which [obligation has been] accepted'22 [the question arises: Is the allowance to be made only on] the first day or every day? Should you find [some ground] for deciding: Every day, [the question still remains whether this applies only to the] first week or to every week. Should you find [some authority] for stating: Every week, [it may be asked whether this applies only to the] first month or to every month — And should you find [some argument] for saying: Every month, [It may still be questioned whether this is applicable only to the] first year or to every year. — All this remains undecided.24
Rab Judah related in the name of Rab: It once happened that the daughter of Nakdimon b. Gorion25 was granted by the Sages26 an allowance of four hundred gold coins in respect of her perfume basket for that particular day, and she27 said to them, 'May you grant such allowances for your own daughters!' and they answered after her: Amen.28 Our Rabbis taught: It once happened that R. Johanan b. Zakkai left Jerusalem riding upon an ass, while his disciples followed him, and he saw a girl picking barley grains in the dung of Arab cattle. As soon as she saw him she wrapped herself with her hair and stood before him. 'Master', she said to him, 'feed me'. 'My daughter', he asked her, 'who are you?' 'I am', she replied, 'the daughter of Nakdimon b. Gorion'. 'My daughter', he said to her, 'what has become29 of the wealth of your father's house?' 'Master', she answered him, 'is there not a proverb current in Jerusalem: "The salt30 of money is diminution?"'31 (Others read: Benevolence).32 'And where [the Master asked] is the wealth of your father-in-law's house?' 'The one', she replied, 'came and destroyed the other'.33 'Do you remember, Master', she said to him, 'when you signed my kethubah?' 'I remember', he said to his disciples, 'that when I signed the kethubah of this [unfortunate woman], I read therein "A million gold denarii from her father's house" besides [the amount] from her father-in-law's house'.34 Thereupon R. Johanan b. Zakkai wept and said: 'How happy are Israel;35 when they do the will of the Omnipresent no nation nor any language-speaking group has any power over them; but when they do not do the will of the Omnipresent he delivers them into the hands of a low people, and not only in the hands of a low people but into the power of the beasts of a low people'.
Did not Nakdimon b. Gorion, however, practice charity? Surely it was taught: It was said of Nakdimon b. Gorion that, when he walked from his house to the house of study, woollen clothes were
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