Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Bava Kamma 77b: וטבחו ומכרו

As I attended today’s daf Yomi shiur, I was distracted by a chance comment. There is a derasha on וטבחו ומכרו, that only those things subject the law in case of to being sold [or indeed, could be sold] would be subject to the law in case of slaughter.

The slight problem is that the pasuk doesn’t actually say וטבחו ומכרו, which is why the Masoret haShas on the side helpfully emends it to וטבחו או מכרו. Here is the pasuk:

However, I would make four points.

  1. Some (but not all) of the Kitvei Yad have וטבחו ומכרו.
  2. The derasha maybe works better if is a conjunction via a vav, such that both are linked together in the same category, as opposed to a disjunction via the word או, which gives alternatives.
  3. The gemara later on in the amud debates the meaning of the word או in terms of shor o seh, or shor o seh o ez. Maybe verb alternatives differ from noun alternatives, but the gemara does not discuss the או in utevacho o mecharo in the same manner.
  4. I’ve often pointed out that a good many derashot of Chazal are based on readings found in the Samaritan text of the Torah, such that instead of saying there was a corruption in our Talmudic or Midrashic text, we should say that they based themselves on a different text. This is another example.

To focus on item 1, here is Ketav Yad Firenze, with וטבחו ומכרו:

Ktav Yad Vatican has או:

Ktav Yad Munich has ומכרו:

In terms of item 4, here is what Vetus Testamentum has:

That is, two Samaritan texts, #127 and #197, have ומכרו. These are:




Unknown said...

Great post as usual. Please fix the ומחרו/ומכרו typo.

joshwaxman said...

Thanks, will do. whoops. :)


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