web analytics
October 31, 2014 / 7 Heshvan, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Daf Yomi


Daf-Yomi-logo

Ancient Cities, Ancient Walls
(Megillah 3b-4a)

 

Our daf discusses cities classified as walled cities in regards to reading the Megillah. Residents of walled cities observe Purim on the 15th of Adar while residents of regular cities observe Purim on the 14th of Adar.

Any dwelling within view of, or near, a walled city has the same halacha as a dwelling within walled city. Our daf discusses cities whose walls were only constructed later as well as cities that originally had walls but which were later destroyed.

The Gemara notes that a city which was walled in Yehoshua’s days is considered walled.

The Chevron Conundrum

Was Chevron surrounded by a wall in the days of Yehoshua? This question raged more than 400 years ago. The Chida (R. Chayyim Yosef David Azulai) discusses it in his work Chevron Ir Kodsheinu. The Radbaz notes in a responsum (2:681) that it is obvious that Chevron was not walled in Yehoshua’s era. Yet, Chevron residents had an ancient custom to read the Megillah both on the 14th and on the 15th of Adar out of doubt (Birkei Yosef, O.C. 688, os 2, and similarly in Responsa Chayyim Sha’al 2:38, os 94).

Proofs Against

The Mishnah lists several cities as walled cities and the Gemara wonders: “Are these the only walled cities? Abaye answers, “Up to Gamla in the Galilee, up to Godod across the Jordan, and Hadid and Ono and Jerusalem in Judea.” Abaye only mentions Hadid, Ono, and Jerusalem as walled cities in Judea. He says nothing about Chevron.

Furthermore, the Gemara (Arachin 33b-34a) states that that cities of refuge were established only in cities without walls. Chevron served as a city of refuge, which would seem to be proof that Chevron was not surrounded by walls.

 

Arguments For

Why, then, was there an ancient custom in Chevron to observe Purim on both the 14th and 15th of Adar? Responsa Mishnas Yosef (1:54) explains. First, although Abaye only mentions Hadid, Ono, and Jerusalem, the Mishnah explicitly states “Hadid, Ono, and Jerusalem, and also similar ones.”

Moreover, Rabbi Yehosef Schwartz, zt”l, author of Tevuos Ha’aretz, maintains in his Responsa Divrei Yosef (2) that the Mishnah only lists walled cities that were settled at the time. Chevron and other cities were not mentioned since they lay waste at the time the Mishnah was composed.

They Demolished The Wall

The author of Tevuos Ha’aretz maintains that Chevron must have been surrounded by walls in Yehoshua’s era. After all, the Torah (Bereishis 23:10) clearly states that Ephron the Hittite spoke to Avraham in Chevron “in the presence of all who came in at the gate of his city.” The gate must have been in a wall, for otherwise it would have had no purpose. Moreover, Calev requested from Yehoshua “this mountain…for there are giants there and big and fortified cities…and he gave Chevron to Caleb” (Yehoshua 14:12).

We must conclude that Chevron was initially surrounded by walls, which were later demolished so that it could serve as a city of refuge. Our Gemara explicitly states that if the Levites won walled cities by lot, they removed the walls so that the cities could qualify as cities of refuge.

We can therefore understand the ancient custom in Chevron to read the Megillah on both the 14th and 15th of Adar out of doubt.

About the Author: RABBI YAAKOV KLASS, rav of Congregation K’hal Bnei Matisyahu in Flatbush, Brooklyn, is Torah Editor of The Jewish Press. He can be contacted at yklass@jewishpress.com. RABBI GERSHON TANNENBAUM, rav of Congregation Bnai Israel of Linden Heights, Boro Park, Brooklyn, is the Director of Igud HaRabbanim – The Rabbinical Alliance of America.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Daf Yomi”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Yehudah Glick on the Temple Mount.
Yehuda Glick’s Condition Stabilizing, “He Was Very Lucky” (1:00 PM)
Latest Judaism Stories
PTI-103114

People love their GPS; just type in the address and it tells you exactly how to get to where you want to go.

Grunfeld-Raphael-logo

In the same way as a married woman is precluded from marrying another man without a get, so too is this widow prohibited from marrying another man without chalitzah.

Daf-Yomi-logo

The Ban Of The Communities
‘Impaired Chalitzah’
(Yevamos 26b)

Question: I recently loaned money to a friend who has been able to repay only part of it. This was an interest-free loan. We exchanged a signed IOU, not a proper shtar with witnesses, since I have always trusted her integrity and only wanted a document that confirms what was loaned and what was repaid. Now that shemittah is approaching, what should I do? Should I forgive the loan? And if my friend is not able to repay it, may I deduct the unpaid money from my ma’aser requirement?

Name Withheld

“My mother raised us to independence, all of us,” Rivka says, which certainly plays itself out in the fact that all three children have taken a different path.

“ ‘We’re almost out of stamps,’ I said. ‘I’ll be happy to run over to the post office and pick up a supply.’ ”

Bris Bein Habesarim affirmed that Hashem gave the land to Avraham’s children. It does not specify for how long. It did not guarantee the Jewish people eternal ownership of the land

According to the Raavad if one who is uncircumcised breaks something he will be exempt from paying for it since he was chayav kares at the same time as he was obligated to repay for the item he broke.

Why does Hebrew refer to mothers-in-law as “sunshine” when society often calls them the opposite?

Having herself been victimized by Pharoah, Sarah should have been more sensitive to Hagar.

Avram’s father was not impressed with the cleverness of his son. In fact, he was so unimpressed that he took him to Nimrod the king, who pronounced him an enemy of the state and attempted to execute him.

How do the stories in Lech Lecha help us understand the central tension of Abraham’s life, legacy?

Abraham did not govern society but instead was the representative of God’s kingdom on earth.

Hagar grossly miscalculated her own merits and demonstrated a serious lack of gratitude for Sarai.

Noach was the lonely man of faith living in a depraved world, full of wickedness.

More Articles from Rabbi Yaakov Klass and Rabbi Gershon Tannenbaum
Daf-Yomi-logo

The Ban Of The Communities
‘Impaired Chalitzah’
(Yevamos 26b)

Daf-Yomi-logo

Law-Abiding Citizen
‘That Which Is Crooked Cannot Be Made Straight…’
(Yevamos 22a-b)

For Appearance’s Sake
‘Shammai Did Not Follow Their Own Ruling’
(Yevamos 13b 14a)

Being Overly Burdensome
My Sabbaths Shall You Observe’
(Yevamos 6a)

Chatzitzah And Its Applications
‘Greater Stringency Applies To Hallowed Things…’
(Chagiga 20b-21a)

A Role Reversal
‘Return, O Wayward Sons…’
(Chagigah 15a)

An Astonishing Miracle
‘Why Bring the Infants to Hakhel?’
(Chagigah 3a)

A Blast At A Funeral?
“R. Hamnuna Came To Daramutha…”
(Moed Kattan 27b)

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/halacha-hashkafa/daf-yomi-137/2014/07/10/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: