Monday, January 02, 2017

Bava Metzia 98 - Rav Yehudai Gaon's contribution

Bava Metzia 98

כדרבא  דאמר רבא מנה לי בידך והלה אומר אין לך בידי אלא חמשים והשאר איני יודע מתוך שאינו יכול לישבע משלם

See Tosafos.
דאמר רבא מנה לי בידך כו'. פי' ר"ח דדברי רבא בהאי לישנא לא מצינו עיקרה בגמ' ומיהו קבלנו מרבותינו דעיקרה בפרק כל הנשבעין (שבועות דף מז.) דאמר רבא כוותיה דרבי אבא מסתברא מתוך שאינו יכול לישבע משלם:

Generally, when you have a statement in the gemara, "in accordance with X, as X says", and then the statement, this is NOT the home location of the statement. It is the setama degemara looking at another sugya where named Amoraim are conversing, and pulling out a specific position. It is always good to know the home, primary location of a statement and the foreign locations where the statement is used. And here, there does not seem to be any such home location for the statement. Except Tosafot has a tradition / explanation for what that location is.

דאמר רבא מנה לי בידך והלה אומר אין לך בידי אלא חמשים והשאר איני יודע מתוך שאינו יכול לישבע משלם משכחת לה

According to a note in my Talmud Bavli Hashalem veHamefoar (Mahadurat Freidman), there are some old manuscripts that have the word "peirush" before the words משכחת לה. And that the Ritva and Ramban note that this section until the seifa is from Rav Yehudai Gaon.

That is, it is post-Talmudic. And that Rav Yehudai put this in as a commentary, and it was copied / adopted into the standard text of the gemara.

Possible repercussion - can you (or can a Rishon, if you want) argue with this **Geonic** text, which is well post-Ravina / Rav Ashi / Savoraim?

This gemara in general seems to be quite far-fetched in its situational setup. There is a much Tosafot to Talmud ratio, and thus very little daf. This is often indicative of a difficult gemara.

3) See Tosafot on amud bet, d"h, שאלה בבעלים שכרה, and the discussion of what Rashi's girsa was.

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