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Rambam - 3 Chapters a Day

Zechiyah uMattanah - Chapter Seven, Zechiyah uMattanah - Chapter Eight, Zechiyah uMattanah - Chapter Nine

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Zechiyah uMattanah - Chapter Seven

1

It is a universally accepted custom in most countries that when a man marries, his friends and acquaintances send him money to support the expenses he must undertake on behalf of his wife. Then the friends and acquaintances who sent him this money come and eat and drink with the groom during all - or part - of the seven days of wedding celebration; everything should be done according to the accepted local custom.

The money that he is sent is called shushvinut, and the people who send the money and then come and eat and drink with the groom are called shushvinin.

א

מִנְּהָג פָּשׁוּט בְּרֹב הַמְּדִינוֹת שֶׁבִּזְמַן שֶׁיִּשָּׂא אָדָם אִשָּׁה מְשַׁלְּחִין לוֹ רֵעָיו וּמְיֻדָּעָיו מָעוֹת כְּדֵי שֶׁיִּתְחַזֵּק בָּהֶן עַל הַהוֹצָאָה שֶׁמּוֹצִיא בְּאִשְׁתּוֹ. וּבָאִים אוֹתָן הָרֵעִים וְהַמְיֻדָּעִים שֶׁשָּׁלְחוּ לוֹ וְאוֹכְלִין וְשׁוֹתִין עִם הֶחָתָן בְּשִׁבְעַת יְמֵי הַמִּשְׁתֶּה אוֹ בְּמִקְצָתָן. הַכּל כְּמִנְהַג הַמְּדִינָה. וְאֵלּוּ הַמָּעוֹת שֶׁמְּשַׁלְּחִין נִקְרָאִין שׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת. וְאוֹתָם שֶׁשָּׁלְחוּ הַמָּעוֹת וְאוֹכְלִין וְשׁוֹתִין עִם הֶחָתָן נִקְרָאִים שׁוֹשְׁבִינִין:

2

Shushvinut is not an outright gift. For it is plainly obvious that a person did not send a colleague 10 dinarim with the intent that he eat and drink a zuz's worth. He sent him the money solely because his intent was that when he would marry, he would send him money as he has sent him.

Therefore, if the sender marries a woman, and the recipient does not return the shushvinut, the sender may lodge a legal claim against the recipient and expropriate the money from him.

ב

הַשּׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת אֵינָהּ מַתָּנָה גְּמוּרָה. הַדְּבָרִים יְדוּעִים שֶׁלֹּא שָׁלַח זֶה עֲשָׂרָה דִּינָרִין בִּשְׁבִיל שֶׁיֹּאכַל וְיִשְׁתֶּה בָּזֶה וְלֹא שָׁלַח אֶלָּא מִפְּנֵי שֶׁבְּדַעְתּוֹ הָיָה שֶׁאִם יִשָּׂא הוּא אִשָּׁה יַחְזֹר וְיִשְׁלַח לוֹ כְּמוֹ שֶׁשָּׁלַח לוֹ. לְפִיכָךְ אִם נָשָׂא זֶה אִשָּׁה וְלֹא הֶחְזִיר לוֹ הַשּׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת הֲרֵי זֶה תּוֹבְעוֹ בְּדִין וּמוֹצִיא מִמֶּנּוּ:

3

He cannot lodge a claim against him unless he marries in the same way as he did.

What is implied? If Reuven married a maiden and Shimon sent him shushvinut, and then Shimon married a widow, Shimon cannot demand that he return the shushvinut, for he will tell him: "I will return it to you only for a maiden, as you gave to me." Conversely, if the giver sent the recipient shushvinut for the marriage of a widow, he cannot demand that it be returned for the marriage of a maiden.

ג

וְאֵין יָכוֹל לְתָבְעוֹ עַד שֶׁיִּשָּׂא כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁנָּשָׂא הוּא. כֵּיצַד. רְאוּבֵן שֶׁנָּשָׂא בְּתוּלָה וְשֶׁלַח לוֹ שִׁמְעוֹן שׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת וְאַחַר כָּךְ נָשָׂא שִׁמְעוֹן אַלְמָנָה. אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לִתְבֹּעַ לְהַחְזִיר לוֹ הַשּׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת שֶׁהֲרֵי אוֹמֵר לוֹ אֵינִי מַחְזִיר לְךָ אֶלָּא בִּבְתוּלָה כְּמוֹ שֶׁנָּתַתָּ לִי. וְכֵן אִם שָׁלַח לוֹ בְּנִשּׂוּאֵי אַלְמָנָה אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לְתָבְעוֹ לְהַחְזִיר לוֹ בְּנִשּׂוּאֵי בְּתוּלָה:

4

If Reuven made a large public reception, while Shimon made a modest private affair, or Reuven married modestly and Shimon made a public affair, he cannot lodge a claim against him. For he can tell him: "I will not do for you anything else than what you did for me."

ד

עָשָׂה רְאוּבֵן מִשְׁתֶּה בְּגָלוּי וּבְפַרְהֶסְיָא וְעָשָׂה שִׁמְעוֹן בְּצִנְעָה. אוֹ שֶׁעָשָׂה רְאוּבֵן בְּצִנְעָה וְשִׁמְעוֹן בְּפַרְהֶסְיָא אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לְתָבְעוֹ. שֶׁהֲרֵי אוֹמֵר לוֹ אֵינִי עוֹשֶׂה עִמְּךָ אֶלָּא כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁעָשִׂיתָ עִמִּי:

5

Reuven married a woman and Shimon sent him shushvinut, and came and ate and drank with him. Afterwards, Shimon married in precisely the same manner as Reuven did, and Reuven came and ate and drank with him, or Shimon called Reuven and he did not desire to come, or Reuven was in the city and heard the herald in a place where it is not customary to give private invitations, but rather everyone who hears the announcement comes, and Reuven heard the announcement and yet did not come, Reuven is obligated to return the entire amount of the shushvinut. For he knew about the wedding and did not come or was given a private invitation in a place where that is the custom, and yet he did not come.

ה

רְאוּבֵן שֶׁנָּשָׂא אִשָּׁה וְשָׁלַח לוֹ שִׁמְעוֹן שׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת וְאָכַל וְשָׁתָה עִמּוֹ וְאַחַר כָּךְ נָשָׂא שִׁמְעוֹן כְּנִשּׂוּאֵי רְאוּבֵן עַצְמָן וּבָא רְאוּבֵן וְאָכַל וְשָׁתָה עִמּוֹ. אוֹ שֶׁקָּרָא לוֹ שִׁמְעוֹן וְלֹא רָצָה לָבוֹא. אוֹ שֶׁהָיָה בַּמְּדִינָה וְשָׁמַע קוֹל טַבְלָא בְּמָקוֹם שֶׁאֵין דַּרְכָּן לִקְרוֹת אֶחָד אֶחָד אֶלָּא כָּל הַשּׁוֹמֵעַ יָבוֹא. וְשָׁמַע וְלֹא בָּא. חַיָּב לְהַחְזִיר לוֹ הַשּׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת כֻּלָּהּ. שֶׁהֲרֵי יָדַע וְלֹא בָּא אוֹ קָרָא לוֹ בְּמָקוֹם שֶׁדַּרְכָּן לִקְרוֹת אֶחָד אֶחָד וְלֹא בָּא:

6

If Reuven was not in the city when Shimon married, he may deduct the cost of the food that Shimon ate at his wedding feast, but must return to him the remainder of the shushvlnut. Similarly, if Reuven was in the city when Shimon married, and he did not invite him or notify him, he may make such a deduction. Moreover, he has a justified complaint, for he should have notified him.

ו

לֹא הָיָה רְאוּבֵן בַּמְּדִינָה מְנַכִּין לוֹ דְּמֵי מַה שֶּׁאָכַל וְשָׁתָה שִׁמְעוֹן אֶצְלוֹ וּמַחֲזִיר לוֹ שְׁאָר הַשּׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת. וְכֵן אִם הָיָה בַּמְּדִינָה וְלֹא קְרָאָהוּ אוֹ לֹא הוֹדִיעוֹ מְנַכִּין לוֹ וְיֵשׁ לוֹ עָלָיו תַּרְעֹמֶת מִפְּנֵי שֶׁלֹּא הוֹדִיעוֹ:

7

How much should he deduct? These are the deductions customarily made. If Shimon sent him only a dinar, he need not return anything to him, for the dinar is the cost of what he ate. If Shimon sent him between a dinar and a sela half should be deducted.

ז

וְכַמָּה מְנַכִּין. נָהֲגוּ בְּנִכּוּי אִם דִּינָר אֶחָד שָׁלַח לוֹ שִׁמְעוֹן אֵינוֹ מַחְזִיר לוֹ כְּלוּם שֶׁהֲרֵי זֶה דְּמֵי מַה שֶּׁאָכַל. וְאִם יִתֵּר עַל הַדִּינָר עַד סֶלַע מְנַכֶּה לוֹ מֶחֱצָה. מִסֶּלַע וּלְמַעְלָה אוֹמְדִין דַּעַת הַמְשַׁלֵּחַ:

8

If he gave more than a sela, we must assess the intent of the sender and the size of the shushvinut. If he is a prestigious person, half of what he gave is deducted. If he is tightfisted and keeps careful account of his expenditures, only what he ate and drank should be deducted, and he must pay him the remainder.

ח

וְשִׁעוּר הַשּׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת אִם אָדָם חָשׁוּב מְנַכֶּה לוֹ מֶחֱצָה. וְאִם צַר עַיִן וּמְדַקְדֵּק בְּהוֹצָאָתוֹ אֵינוֹ מְנַכֶּה לוֹ אֶלָּא שִׁעוּר מַה שֶּׁאָכַל וְשָׁתָה וּמְשַׁלֵּם לוֹ הַשְּׁאָר:

9

If Shimon dies before he marries, or he marries and dies in the midst of the wedding celebrations, Reuven is not required to give anything to his heirs. For he can tell the heirs: "Bring me my shushvinin; I will gladly celebrate with him and pay my due."

ט

מֵת שִׁמְעוֹן קֹדֶם שֶׁיִּשָּׂא אִשָּׁה אוֹ שֶׁנָּשָׂא וּמֵת בְּתוֹךְ יְמֵי הַמִּשְׁתֶּה אֵין רְאוּבֵן חַיָּב לְהַחְזִיר לְיוֹרְשֵׁי שִׁמְעוֹן כְּלוּם שֶׁהֲרֵי אוֹמֵר לָהֶם תְּנוּ לִי שׁוֹשְׁבִינִי וְאֶשְׂמַח עִמּוֹ:

10

Therefore, if Reuven rejoiced with Shimon and afterwards Shimon died, Shimon invited him to the wedding and he did not come, Reuven was not in the city at the time of Shimon's wedding, or he did not notify him, since Shimon died after the days of rejoicing were concluded, Reuven is obligated to return the shushvinut to Shimon's heirs - either in its entirety or after a deduction has been made - if he did not notify him or if he was not in the city.

י

לְפִיכָךְ אִם שָׂמַח עִמּוֹ וְאַחַר כָּךְ מֵת שִׁמְעוֹן. אוֹ קָרָא לוֹ וְלֹא בָּא אוֹ שֶׁלֹּא הָיָה בַּמְּדִינָה אוֹ שֶׁלֹּא הוֹדִיעוֹ. הוֹאִיל וְשָׁלְמוּ יְמֵי הַמִּשְׁתֶּה וְאַחַר כָּךְ מֵת שִׁמְעוֹן. חַיָּב רְאוּבֵן לְהַחְזִיר הַשּׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת לְיוֹרְשָׁיו אוֹ כֻּלָּהּ אוֹ בְּנִכּוּי אִם לֹא הוֹדִיעוֹ אוֹ לֹא הָיָה עִמּוֹ בַּמְּדִינָה:

11

Different rules apply if Reuven died, and then Shimon married a woman and the days of rejoicing were concluded. If the local custom is to collect the shushvinut from the heirs, Reuven's heirs are compelled to return the shushvinut. In a place where this is not the local custom, Reuven's heirs are not obligated to pay anything.

יא

מֵת רְאוּבֵן וְאַחַר כָּךְ נָשָׂא שִׁמְעוֹן אִשָּׁה וְשָׁלְמוּ יְמֵי הַמִּשְׁתֶּה. מָקוֹם שֶׁנָּהֲגוּ לִגְבּוֹת הַשּׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת מִיּוֹרְשִׁין כּוֹפִין יוֹרְשֵׁי רְאוּבֵן לְהַחְזִיר בְּנִכּוּי. וּמָקוֹם שֶׁלֹּא נָהֲגוּ אֵין הַיּוֹרְשִׁין מְשַׁלְּמִין כְּלוּם:

12

If Reuven died after Shimon married a woman and the days of rejoicing were concluded, Reuven's heirs are compelled to pay the shushvinut regardless of the locale in which they live. For their testator was obligated to pay before his death. If he was required to pay the entire sum, they must pay that amount. If a deduction was made, that deduction also applies to them.

יב

מֵת רְאוּבֵן אַחַר שֶׁנָּשָׂא שִׁמְעוֹן אִשָּׁה וְשָׁלְמוּ יְמֵי הַמִּשְׁתֶּה. כּוֹפִין אֶת יוֹרְשָׁיו וּמְשַׁלְּמִין הַשּׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת בְּכָל מָקוֹם. שֶׁהֲרֵי נִתְחַיֵּב אֲבִיהֶן לְשַׁלֵּם. וְאִם כֻּלָּהּ הָיָה חַיָּב לְשַׁלֵּם מְשַׁלְּמִין כֻּלָּהּ. וְאִם בְּנִכּוּי מְשַׁלְּמִין בְּנִכּוּי:

13

Five statements were made concerning shushvinut:

a) It may be expropriated by a court of law, for it is only like a loan and not an outright gift;

b) It need be repaid only at the required time, when the marriage is held in the same manner as the first person's marriage; this is like a condition of the loan, although he did not explicitly state that he was giving the loan with this intent;

c) The prohibition against taking interest is not involved; even if a person sent his colleague a dinar and the colleague sent him ten, it is permissible; the rationale is that he did not send him with the intent that he add;

d) It is not nullified in the Sabbatical year; the rationale is that the giver may not demand payment from the recipient until he marries in the same manner as he married;

e) The firstborn does not receive a double portion when the shushvinut is returned to the giver's heirs; the rationale is that at the time of the division of the estate, it is not an actual part of the estate, but rather ra'ui; and the firstborn does not receive a double portion of ra'ui, as will be explained with regard to that subject.

יג

חֲמִשָּׁה דְּבָרִים נֶאֶמְרוּ בַּשּׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת. נִגְבֵּית בְּבֵית דִּין שֶׁאֵינָהּ אֶלָּא כְּמוֹ מִלְוֶה. וְאֵינָהּ מִשְׁתַּלֶּמֶת אֶלָּא בְּעוֹנָתָהּ כְּעֵין נִשּׂוּאֵי רִאשׁוֹן. שֶׁזֶּה כְּמוֹ תְּנַאי הוּא אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא פֵּרֵשׁ שֶׁעַל דַּעַת זֶה שְׁלָחָהּ. וְאֵין בָּהּ מִשּׁוּם רִבִּית. אֲפִלּוּ שָׁלַח לוֹ דִּינָר וְהֶחְזִיר לוֹ עֲשָׂרָה מֻתָּר שֶׁלֹּא עַל מְנָת לְהוֹסִיף לוֹ שָׁלַח. וְאֵין הַשְּׁבִיעִית מְשַׁמַּטְתָּהּ שֶׁאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לִגּשֹׁ אוֹתוֹ וּלְתָבְעוֹ עַד שֶׁיִּשָּׂא כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁנָּשָׂא הוּא. וְאֵין הַבְּכוֹר נוֹטֵל בָּהּ פִּי שְׁנַיִם כְּשֶׁתַּחְזֹר לַיּוֹרְשִׁין מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהוּא רָאוּי וְאֵין הַבְּכוֹר נוֹטֵל בָּרָאוּי כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר בִּמְקוֹמוֹ:

14

When a person offers a colleague money when the latter's financial status suffers, the intended recipient refuses to take it, and the giver takes an oath that he is unwilling that the recipient not accept it, and he presses the recipient until he accepts it, even though the giver did not say so explicitly, the money is considered to be a gift.

The same law applies when a person sends a gift of food to a colleague or offers other similar forms of generosity. The giver may not retract and demand repayment unless he explicitly states that he is making the gift as a loan.

יד

הַשּׁוֹלֵחַ תְּשׁוּרָה לַחֲבֵרוֹ. אוֹ שֶׁנָּתַן לוֹ מָעוֹת כְּשֶׁמָּטָה יָדוֹ וְהוּא מְמָאֵן לִקַּח. וְזֶה נִשְׁבָּע שֶׁאִי אֶפְשָׁר שֶׁלֹּא תִּקַּח וְהִפְצִיר בּוֹ עַד שֶׁלָּקַח. וְכֵן כָּל כַּיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא פֵּרֵשׁ הֲרֵי אֵלּוּ מַתָּנָה. וְאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לַחְזֹר הוּא וְלִתְבֹּעַ עַד שֶׁיְּפָרֵשׁ שֶׁהוּא מִלְוֶה:

15

When a person sends jugs of wine or oil to a colleague at the time of his wedding, he may not demand repayment in court. These gifts are considered to be deeds of kindness; the laws of shushvinut apply only to money.

טו

וְכֵן הַשּׁוֹלֵחַ לַחֲבֵרוֹ כַּדֵּי יַיִן וְכַדֵּי שֶׁמֶן וּפֵרוֹת בְּעֵת הַנִּשּׂוּאִין. אֵין נִגְבִּין בְּבֵית דִּין. מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהִיא גְּמִילוּת חֲסָדִים. וְלֹא נֶאֶמְרוּ דִּינֵי שׁוֹשְׁבִינוּת אֶלָּא בְּמָעוֹת בִּלְבַד:

Zechiyah uMattanah - Chapter Eight

1

A blind, lame or handless person, and similarly, one who feels pain in his head, his eye, his hand, his foot or the like, is considered to be a healthy person with regard to all matters that concern his purchases, his sales or gifts that he gives.

א

הַסוּמָא אוֹ הַפִּסֵּחַ. אוֹ הַגִּדֵּם. אוֹ הַחוֹשֵׁשׁ בְּרֹאשׁוֹ. אוֹ בְּעֵינוֹ. אוֹ בְּיָדוֹ אוֹ בְּרַגְלוֹ וְכַיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן הֲרֵי הוּא כְּבָרִיא לְכָל דְּבָרָיו בְּמִקָּחוֹ אוֹ בְּמִמְכָּרוֹ וּמַתְּנוֹתָיו:

2

However, when a person becomes ill to the extent that he feels weak throughout his entire body - indeed, because of his illness, his strength has dwindled to the extent that he cannot walk on his feet in the market place, and he is confined to his bed - he is referred to as a sh'chiv me'ra. The laws applying to his gifts differ from those applying to the gifts given by a healthy person.

What is implied? When a sh'chiv me'ra gives orders and says: "Give so and so such and such, and so and so such and such" the intended recipients acquire all the property apportioned to them when the sick person dies. This applies whether he issued his instructions during the week or on the Sabbath, and whether or not a written record was drawn up.

Nor must his instructions be confirmed by a kinyan for the statements of a sh'chiv me'ra are considered as if they have been written down, and transferred. This is a Rabbinic decree. Nevertheless, although it is only a Rabbinic decree, our Sages conveyed upon this convention the power of Scriptural Law, so that a dying person will not become exasperated, knowing that his words are of no consequence.

ב

אֲבָל הַחוֹלֶה שֶׁתָּשַׁשׁ כֹּחַ כָּל הַגּוּף. וְכָשַׁל כֹּחוֹ מֵחֲמַת הַחֹלִי עַד שֶׁאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לְהַלֵּךְ עַל רַגְלוֹ בַּשּׁוּק וַהֲרֵי הוּא נוֹפֵל עַל הַמִּטָּה. הוּא [הַנִּקְרָא] שְׁכִיב מֵרַע. וּמִשְׁפְּטֵי מַתְּנוֹתָיו אֵינָם כְּמַתְּנַת בָּרִיא. כֵּיצַד. שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁצִּוָּה וְאָמַר לִתֵּן לִפְלוֹנִי כָּךְ וְכָךְ בֵּין בְּחל בֵּין בְּשַׁבָּת. בֵּין כָּתַב בֵּין לֹא כָּתַב. זָכוּ הַכּל כְּשֶׁיָּמוּת בְּכָל מַה שֶּׁנָּתַן לָהֶם וְאֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ קִנְיָן. שֶׁדִּבְרֵי שְׁכִיב מֵרַע כִּכְתוּבִין וְכִמְסוּרִין הֵן. וְדָבָר זֶה מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים. וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵינוֹ אֶלָּא מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם עָשׂוּ אוֹתָהּ כְּשֶׁל תּוֹרָה. כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא תִּטָּרֵף דַּעְתּוֹ עָלָיו כְּשֶׁיֵּדַע שֶׁאֵין דְּבָרָיו קַיָּמִים:

3

Accordingly, if the dying man says: "Confirm my statements with a kinyan" we confirm his statements even on the Sabbath. For this kinyan is unnecessary.

ג

לְפִיכָךְ אִם אָמַר קְנוּ מִמֶּנִּי. אֲפִלּוּ בְּשַׁבָּת קוֹנִין מִמֶּנּוּ, שֶׁזֶּה הַקִּנְיָן אֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ:

4

When apportioning his property, a sh'chiv me'ra does not have to say: "You are my witnesses." Instead, whoever hears his statements may serve as a witness. The rationale is that a person does not speak facetiously at the time of his death.

ד

וְאֵין שְׁכִיב מֵרַע צָרִיךְ לוֹמַר אַתֶּם עֵדַי. אֶלָּא כָּל הַשּׁוֹמֵעַ אֶת דְּבָרָיו הֲרֵי זֶה עֵד. שֶׁאֵין אָדָם מְשַׁטֶּה בִּשְׁעַת מִיתָה:

5

When a sh'chiv me'ra orders that a gift be given to a fetus in its mother's womb, the fetus acquires the property. The rationale is that a person has unique feelings of closeness toward his son, as we have explained.

ה

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁצִּוָּה לָתֵת מַתָּנָה לְעֻבָּר שֶׁבִּמְעֵי אִמּוֹ. זָכָה הָעֻבָּר מִפְּנֵי שֶׁדַּעְתּוֹ שֶׁל אָדָם קְרוֹבָה אֵצֶל בְּנוֹ כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ:

6

When a sh'chiv me'ra says: "If my wife gives birth to a boy he should receive a maneh, but if she gives birth to a girl she should receive 200 zuz," if she gives birth to a boy, he receives a maneh, and if she gives birth to a girl, she receives 200 zuz.

If she gives birth to both a boy and a girl, the boy receives a maneh, and the girl, 200 zuz. If she gives birth to a tumtum or an androgynous, that child should be given the lesser of the two amounts.

ו

אָמַר אִם יָלְדָה אִשְׁתִּי זָכָר יִטּל מָנֶה וְאִם נְקֵבָה מָאתַיִם. וְיָלְדָה זָכָר. נוֹטֵל מָנֶה. יָלְדָה נְקֵבָה נוֹטֶלֶת מָאתַיִם. יָלְדָה זָכָר וּנְקֵבָה הַזָּכָר נוֹטֵל מָנֶה וְהַנְּקֵבָה מָאתַיִם. יָלְדָה טֻמְטוּם וְאַנְדְּרוֹגִינוּס נוֹטֵל כַּפָּחוּת שֶׁבִּשְׁנֵיהֶם:

7

The following rule applies when a sh'chiv me'ra is asked: "To whom should your property be given?" and he replies: "I thought that I had a son or that my wife is pregnant; now that I know that I do not have a son and my wife is not pregnant, my property should be given to so and so." If it is discovered that in fact he had a son or his wife was pregnant - even if afterwards the wife miscarried or the son died - the gift is not binding.

ז

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁאָמְרוּ לוֹ נְכָסָיו לְמִי. וְאָמַר לָהֶם דּוֹמֶה שֶׁיֵּשׁ לוֹ בֵּן אוֹ שֶׁאִשְׁתּוֹ מְעֵבֶּרֶת. עַכְשָׁו שֶׁאֵין לוֹ בֵּן אוֹ שֶׁאֵין אִשְׁתּוֹ מְעֻבֶּרֶת נְכָסָיו לִפְלוֹנִי. וְנוֹדַע שֶׁיֵּשׁ לוֹ בֵּן אוֹ שֶׁהָיְתָה אִשְׁתּוֹ מְעֻבֶּרֶת אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהִפִּילָה אוֹ מֵת הַבֵּן אַחַר כָּךְ. אֵין מַתְּנָתוֹ מַתָּנָה:

8

Ownership of a gift given by a sh'chiv me'ra is not transferred until after the death of the sh'chiv me'ra. No one acquires any of the landed property or movable property apportioned to him until after the death of the sh'chiv me'ra.

ח

מַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע אֵינָהּ קוֹנָה אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה. וְאֵין אַחֵר זוֹכֶה בַּדָּבָר שֶׁצִּוָּה לוֹ בֵּין מְקַרְקְעִין בֵּין מִטַּלְטְלִין אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה:

9

For this reason, we expropriate money to pay the ketubah, and the living expenses for the deceased's wife and his daughters from the property that the sh'chiv me'ra apportioned to the intended recipients.

The rationale is that with his death, his estate became obligated to pay his wife the money due her by virtue of her ketubah and her living expenses, and the recipients of the gifts did not acquire what was given to them until after the death of the sh'chiv me'ra.

ט

לְפִיכָךְ מוֹצִיאִין לִכְתֻבַּת הָאִשָּׁה וּמְזוֹן הָאַלְמָנָה וְהַבָּנוֹת מִיַּד אֵלּוּ שֶׁצִּוָּה לָתֵת לָהֶם. שֶׁהֲרֵי בְּמִיתָתוֹ נִתְחַיְּבוּ הַנְּכָסִים בִּכְתֻבָּה וּבִמְזוֹנוֹת. וְאֵלּוּ שֶׁנָּתַן לָהֶם לֹא יִקְנוּ אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה:

10

When a document recording a gift given by a sh'chiv me'ra mentions a kinyan - whether it involves a portion of the deceased's estate or his entire estate - there are doubts about the matter. Perhaps he did not make up his mind to transfer ownership except via a legal document. In such an instance, the gift would not be effective. For a gift given by a sh'chiv me'ra takes effect only after the principal's death, and a legal document cannot transfer property after the principal's death.

י

מַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁכָּתוּב בָּהּ קִנְיָן. בֵּין שֶׁהָיְתָה בְּמִקְצָת נְכָסָיו בֵּין שֶׁהָיְתָה בְּכָל נְכָסָיו. חוֹשְׁשִׁין לָהּ שֶׁמָּא לֹא גָּמַר לְהַקְנוֹתוֹ אֶלָּא בִּשְׁטָר. וְהוֹאִיל וּמַתָּנָה זוֹ לֹא תִּקָּנֶה אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה. אֵין שְׁטָר לְאַחַר מִיתָה וַהֲרֵי הַמַּתָּנָה בְּטֵלָה:

11

If, however, the kinyan was made solely to augment the legal power of the recipient - e.g., it was written: "And a kinyan was performed to amplify this gift" - the gift is binding.

יא

וְאִם קָנוּ מִמֶּנּוּ כְּדֵי לְיַפּוֹת כֹּחַ הַמְקַבֵּל. כְּגוֹן שֶׁכָּתוּב וְקָנִינוּ מִמֶּנּוּ מוֹסִיף עַל מַתָּנָה זוֹ. הֲרֵי הִיא קַיֶּמֶת:

12

When a sh'chiv me'ra says: "Compose a record and give to so and so a maneh," but he dies before the record was composed and the gift was given to him, the record should not be composed, nor should the gift be given. We suspect that perhaps the sh'chiv me'ra made up his mind to transfer the gift to the recipient via a legal document, and a legal document cannot effect a transfer after the principal's death.

יב

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁאָמַר כִּתְבוּ וּתְנוּ לִפְלוֹנִי מָנֶה. וּמֵת קֹדֶם שֶׁיִּכְתְּבוּ וְיִתְּנוּ לוֹ. אֵין כּוֹתְבִין וְאֵין נוֹתְנִין. שֶׁמָּא לֹא גָּמַר לְהַקְנוֹתוֹ אֶלָּא בִּשְׁטָר וְאֵין שְׁטָר לְאַחַר מִיתָה:

13

If, however, he said "Compose a record" solely to augment the legal power of the recipient - e.g., he said; "Give so and so a maneh" - and then he added, "and compose a record and give it to him" - a legal record should be composed, signed and given even after the death of the sh'chiv me'ra.

יג

וְאִם אָמַר כִּתְבוּ. כְּדֵי לְיַפּוֹת כֹּחַ הַמְקַבֵּל. כְּגוֹן שֶׁאָמַר תְּנוּ מָנֶה לִפְלוֹנִי וְאָמַר וְאַף כִּתְבוּ וּתְנוּ לוֹ. הֲרֵי אֵלּוּ כּוֹתְבִין וְחוֹתְמִין וְנוֹתְנִין לְאַחַר מִיתָה:

14

The following rule applies when a sh'chiv me'ra apportions all his property unconditionally, without retaining anything for himself: If he recovers, the gift is retracted. This applies even if he confirmed his statements with a kinyan to augment the legal power of the recipient. Similarly, it applies whether he apportioned all his property to one individual or to two individuals.

The rationale is that we assume that he did not want to give all his property to that persons as a gift, and his intent was that the recipient should not acquire anything until after he died.

יד

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁכָּתַב כָּל נְכָסָיו מַתָּנָה סְתָם וְלֹא שִׁיֵּר כְּלוּם. אִם עָמַד חוֹזֵר. וַאֲפִלּוּ קָנוּ מִיָּדוֹ כְּדֵי לְיַפּוֹת אֶת כֹּחוֹ. בֵּין שֶׁהִקְנָה כָּל נְכָסָיו לְאֶחָד בֵּין שֶׁכְּתָבָם לִשְׁנַיִם. שֶׁאֹמֶד דַּעַת הוּא שֶׁלֹּא נָתַן זֶה הַכּל אֶלָּא שֶׁנִּתְכַּוֵּן שֶׁלֹּא יִקְנוּ כְּלוּם אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מוֹתוֹ:

15

If he retains anything for himself - either landed property or movable property - he has given only part of his property as a gift. If such a gift is given without an explicit statement of intent, it is considered to be a gift given by a healthy man, and it is effective from the time it was written. Therefore, it is not retracted upon the recovery of the sh'chiv me'ra. This applies provided he confirms the gift with a kinyan. For a gift given by a sh'chiv me'ra that transfers only part of his property requires a kinyan whether he recovers or does not recover.

טו

שִׁיֵּר כְּלוּם לְעַצְמוֹ בֵּין קַרְקַע בֵּין מִטַּלְטְלִין. הֲרֵי זוֹ מַתָּנָה בְּמִקְצָת וּסְתָמָהּ כְּמַתְּנַת בָּרִיא שֶׁקּוֹנֶה מִזְּמַן הַכְּתִיבָה. לְפִיכָךְ אֵינוֹ חוֹזֵר. וְהוּא שֶׁקָּנוּ מִיָּדוֹ. שֶׁמַּתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע בְּמִקְצָת צְרִיכָה קִנְיָן. בֵּין עָמַד בֵּין לֹא עָמַד:

16

When does the above apply? When the person gave the gift without making any explicit statement. In such an instance, we assess his intent and presume that since he retained property, his intent was to transfer the property during his lifetime, like a gift given by a healthy man.

טז

בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בְּשֶׁנָּתַן סְתָם. שֶׁהֲרֵי אָנוּ אוֹמְדִין דַּעְתּוֹ וְאוֹמְרִין הוֹאִיל וְשִׁיֵּר לֹא נִתְכַּוֵּן אֶלָּא לְהַקְנוֹת לוֹ מֵחַיִּים בְּמַתְּנַת בָּרִיא:

17

If, however, the dying man explicitly states that he is giving the portion of estate as a gift of a sh'chiv me'ra, which takes effect only after his death, there is no need to confirm it with a kinyan, and if he recovers it is retracted. If, however, he does not recover, the intended recipient acquires that portion of the estate.

If such a gift was confirmed by a kinyan, the intended recipient does not acquire the property apportioned to him unless the kinyan was intended to amplify the legal power of the recipient, as explained above.

יז

אֲבָל אִם נָתַן לוֹ הַמִּקְצָת בְּפֵרוּשׁ בְּמַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁאֵינוֹ אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה אֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ קִנְיָן. וְאִם עָמַד חוֹזֵר. וְאִם לֹא עָמַד קָנָה זֶה הַמִּקְצָת. וְאִם הָיָה בָּהּ קִנְיָן לֹא קָנָה אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן הָיָה מְיַפֶּה כֹּחוֹ כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ:

18

Do not err: Should a dying man apportion all his property and state explicitly that he is giving everything from the present, and that his gift should take effect during his lifetime - such a gift is not governed by the laws pertaining to a gift of a sh'chiv me'ra. Instead, it is like any other gift given by a healthy person. If the legal document reaches the hand of the recipient, or the giver confirms the gift with a kinyan, the recipient acquires everything, and the giver cannot retract.

יח

אַל תִּטְעֶה בִּשְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁכָּתַב כָּל נְכָסָיו וּפֵרֵשׁ שֶׁנָּתַן הַכּל מֵעַכְשָׁו וְהִקְנָה מֵחַיִּים. שֶׁאֵין זֶה מַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע אֶלָּא כִּשְׁאָר כָּל מַתְּנוֹת הַבְּרִיאִים. שֶׁאִם הִגִּיעַ הַשְּׁטָר לְיַד הַמְקַבֵּל אוֹ שֶׁקָּנוּ מִיַּד הַנּוֹתֵן קָנָה הַכּל וְאֵין יָכוֹל לַחְזֹר בּוֹ:

19

When a person on his deathbed gives a gift and, its legal record states: "In life and in death ..." or "From my life and in my death ...," it is considered to be a gift given by a sh'chiv me'ra, because it says "in death." This applies whether the dying man apportions all his property or only a portion of it.

The expression "in death" indicates that the intent is that the gift should take effect after the giver's death. It says "in life" only to settle the giver's mind and express a prayer that that he will survive this illness.

יט

הַנּוֹתֵן מַתָּנָה כְּשֶׁהוּא שְׁכִיב מֵרַע וְכָתַב בָּהּ בַּחַיִּים וּבַמָּוֶת אוֹ מֵחַיִּים וּבַמָּוֶת. בֵּין בַּכּל בֵּין בְּמִקְצָת. הוֹאִיל וְכָתוּב בּוֹ וּבַמָּוֶת הֲרֵי זוֹ מַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע. שֶׁזּוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב בָּהּ וּבַמָּוֶת שֶׁלֹּא יִקְנֶה אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה. וְזֶה שֶׁכָּתוּב בָּהּ מֵחַיִּים סִימָן לְיַשֵּׁב אֶת דַּעְתּוֹ שֶׁיִּחְיֶה מֵחֹלִי זֶה:

20

Even though a person on his deathbed apportions all the property that he is known to possess, it is considered as if he apportioned only part of his estate. If the sh'chiv me'ra confirmed the gift with a kinyan and then recovered, the gift is not retracted. The rationale is that we suspect that he owns other property in a distant country.

This law applies unless the dying man says: "All my property that is these...," or unless it is the common assumption that the person owns only the property that he apportioned. In such instances, the gift is considered to apply to all his property.

כ

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁנָּתַן הַנְּכָסִים שֶׁהַדָּבָר גָּלוּי שֶׁהֵן כָּל נְכָסִים שֶׁיֵּשׁ לוֹ. הֲרֵי זֶה כְּמַתָּנָה בְּמִקְצָת וְאִם קָנוּ מִיָּדוֹ וְעָמַד אֵינוֹ חוֹזֵר. חוֹשְׁשִׁין אָנוּ שֶׁמָּא נִשְׁאֲרוּ לוֹ נְכָסִים אֲחֵרִים בִּמְדִינַת הַיָּם. עַד שֶׁיֹּאמַר כָּל נְכָסַי שֶׁהֵן אֵלּוּ אוֹ שֶׁהָיָה מֻחְזָק שֶׁאֵין לוֹ נְכָסִים אֶלָּא אֵלּוּ. וְאַחַר כָּךְ תִּהְיֶה הַמַּתָּנָה בַּכּל:

21

The following rules apply when a sh'chiv me'ra apportions all his property to other people. We see whether it appears that his intent was to divide his estate. If that is so, if he dies all the intended recipients acquire the property designated for them. If he recovers, all the gifts are retracted.

Different laws apply if, however, it appears that he was reconsidering the matter - e.g., after he made a gift with which he left over part of his property, he paused and then apportioned more, and then paused and then apportioned more and confirmed each of his gifts with a kinyan. If he dies, all the intended recipients acquire the property designated for them. If he recovers, only the final gift he designated is retracted. For this person alone was given all his remaining property.

כא

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁכָּתַב כָּל נְכָסָיו לַאֲחֵרִים. רוֹאִין. אִם כִּמְחַלֵּק כְּתָבָם. מֵת קָנוּ כֻּלָּן. עָמַד חוֹזֵר בְּכֻלָּן. וְאִם כְּנִמְלַךְ אַחַר שֶׁשִּׁיֵּר חָזַר וְכָתַב וְקָנוּ מִיָּדוֹ עַל כָּל אֶחָד וְאֶחָד. מֵת קָנוּ כֻּלָּן. עָמַד אֵינוֹ חוֹזֵר אֶלָּא בָּאַחֲרוֹן שֶׁהֲרֵי נָתַן לוֹ כָּל הַנְּכָסִים הַנִּשְׁאָרִים:

22

When a sh'chiv me'ra signs over all his property to one of his servants and then recovers, the gift of the property is retracted. The gift of freedom to the slave, however, is not retracted, for he has already gained the reputation of being a free man.

כב

הַכּוֹתֵב כָּל נְכָסָיו לְעַבְדּוֹ וְעָמַד חוֹזֵר בַּנְּכָסִים וְאֵינוֹ חוֹזֵר בָּעֶבֶד. שֶׁהֲרֵי יָצָא עָלָיו שֵׁם בֶּן חוֹרִין:

23

When a sh'chiv me'ra apportions his property because of his impending death - i.e., he thinks that he will die, and this is obvious from his words - even though a kinyan is made to confirm the gift of a portion of his estate - if he recovers, the gift is retracted.

כג

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁצִּוָּה מֵחֲמַת מִיתָה. כְּגוֹן שֶׁהָיְתָה דַּעְתּוֹ נוֹטָה שֶׁהוּא מֵת וַדַּאי. וְנִכָּר דָּבָר זֶה מִכְּלַל דְּבָרָיו. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁקָּנוּ מִיָּדוֹ בְּמִקְצָת אִם עָמַד חוֹזֵר:

24

When a person goes out to sea or on a caravan journey, is being transported in chains, or is dangerously ill, having fallen sick suddenly with a severe infirmity - any of these four individuals is considered to be a person who apportions his property because of his impending death. His statements are considered as if they are written down in a legal document and his property has already been apportioned. If these individuals die, their instructions are carried out.

If they are saved and recover, even though a kinyan had been made to confirm the gift of a portion of his estate, the gift is retracted, as is the law with regard to anyone who apportions his property because of his impending death.

כד

וְהַמְפָרֵשׁ בַּיָּם. וְהַיּוֹצֵא בְּשַׁיָּרָא. וְהַיּוֹצֵא בְּקוֹלָר. וְהַמְסֻכָּן וְהוּא שֶׁקָּפַץ עָלָיו הַחֹלִי וְהִכְבִּיד עָלָיו חָלְיוֹ. כָּל אֶחָד מֵאַרְבַּעְתָּן כִּמְצַוֶּה מֵחֲמַת מִיתָה. וַהֲרֵי דְּבָרָיו כִּכְתוּבִין וְכִמְסוּרִין וּמְקַיְּמִין אוֹתָן אִם מֵת. וְאִם נִצַּל וְעָמַד אֲפִלּוּ קָנוּ מִיָּדוֹ בְּמִקְצָת חוֹזֵר. כְּדִין כָּל מְצַוֶּה מֵחֲמַת מִיתָה:

25

The following laws apply when a sh'chiv me'ra passes from one sickness to another. If he does not recover and does not walk unsupported in the marketplace, the gift that he gave is binding.

כה

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁנִּתַּק מֵחֹלִי לְחֹלִי. אִם לֹא עָמַד וְלֹא הָלַךְ עַל מִשְׁעַנְתּוֹ בַּשּׁוּק מַתְּנָתוֹ מַתָּנָה:

26

Different rules apply when the dying man stands and walks supported between the sickness in which he apportioned his property and the sickness from which he died. We have physicians assess whether or not he died from the first sickness that affected him. If this is so, the gift is binding. If not, the gift is not binding. If he walked in the marketplace without a support, no assessment is necessary, and the gifts that he originally gave are nullified.

כו

עָמַד בֵּין הַחֹלִי שֶׁצִּוָּה בּוֹ וּבֵין הַחֹלִי שֶׁמֵּת מִמֶּנּוּ וְהָלַךְ עַל מִשְׁעַנְתּוֹ. אוֹמְדִין אוֹתוֹ עַל פִּי רוֹפְאִים. אִם מֵחֲמַת חֹלִי הָרִאשׁוֹן מֵת מַתְּנָתוֹ קַיֶּמֶת וְאִם לָאו אֵין מַתְּנָתוֹ קַיֶּמֶת. וְאִם הָלַךְ בַּשּׁוּק בְּלֹא מִשְׁעֶנֶת אֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ אֹמֶד אֶלָּא בָּטְלוּ מַתְּנוֹתָיו הָרִאשׁוֹנוֹת:

27

When there is a record of an oral will made by a sh'chiv me'ra that does not say that he died because of the sickness during which he apportioned his property, and the witnesses are not present to corroborate this, the gift is nullified, despite the fact that he died. For his death is not proof that he did not recover. Perhaps he recovered from the sickness during which he apportioned his property and then contracted another sickness and then died.

Therefore, the property is presumed to belong to the legal heirs unless the recipients of the gift bring proof that he died because of the sickness during which he apportioned his property.

כז

מַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁאֵין כָּתוּב בָּהּ שֶׁמִּתּוֹךְ הַחֹלִי הַזֶּה שֶׁצִּוָּה בּוֹ מֵת וְאֵין הָעֵדִים מְצוּיִין לִשְׁאל לָהֶם. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהֲרֵי זֶה הַמְצַוֶּה מֵת. הֲרֵי הַמַּתָּנָה בְּטֵלָה. שֶׁאֵין מִיתָתוֹ רְאָיָה. שֶׁמָּא מֵחֹלִי שֶׁנָּתַן בּוֹ הַמַּתָּנָה נִרְפָּא וְאַחַר כָּךְ חָלָה חֹלִי אַחֵר וּמֵת. לְפִיכָךְ הַנְּכָסִים בְּחֶזְקַת הַיּוֹרְשִׁין. עַד שֶׁיָּבִיא רְאָיָה שֶׁמִּתּוֹךְ הַחֹלִי הַזֶּה שֶׁנָּתַן בּוֹ מַתָּנָה זוֹ מֵת:

Zechiyah uMattanah - Chapter Nine

1

When a sh'chiv me'ra instructs those listening to the apportionment of his property: "Do not reveal this gift and do not tell anyone about it until after my death," the gift is binding. It is not considered to be a hidden gift. For at the time when the transfer takes place - i.e., after the testator's death - the testator said: "Reveal the matter."

א

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁצִּוָּה וְאָמַר לֹא תְּגַלּוּ מַתָּנָה זוֹ וְלֹא תּוֹדִיעוּ בָּהּ אָדָם אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה. הֲרֵי זוֹ מַתָּנָה קַיֶּמֶת וְאֵינָהּ מַתָּנָה מְסֻתֶּרֶת. שֶׁבְּעֵת שֶׁהִקְנָה שֶׁהוּא אַחַר מוֹתוֹ הֲרֵי אָמַר גַּלּוּ אוֹתָהּ:

2

A person who apportions his property because of his impending death does not have to say: "Publicize the gift...." Even though it is written without any specific instructions, we do not assume that the intent was that it be hidden.

ב

מְצַוֶּה מֵחֲמַת מִיתָה אֵין צָרִיךְ לוֹמַר גַּלּוּ אֶת הַמַּתָּנָה. אֶלָּא אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהִיא כְּתוּבָה סְתָם אֵין חוֹשְׁשִׁין לָהּ שֶׁמָּא מְסֻתֶּרֶת הִיא:

3

When a sh'chiv me'ra says: "Let so and so take all my property," or "...part of my property," or he uses the verb "take hold of," "acquire," "obtain" - they are all expressions connoting a gift. Similarly, if he says "inherit" or "receive as an inheritance," when the intended recipient is fit to inherit the property, the intended recipient acquires it.

ג

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁצִּוָּה וְאָמַר יִטּל פְּלוֹנִי כָּל נְכָסַי אוֹ מִקְּצָת נְכָסַי. אוֹ יַחֲזִיק. אוֹ יִזְכֶּה. אוֹ יִקְנֶה. כֻּלָּן לְשׁוֹן מַתָּנָה הִיא. וְכֵן אִם אָמַר יַחְסֵן אוֹ יִירַשׁ עַל מִי שֶׁרָאוּי לְיָרְשׁוֹ הֲרֵי זֶה קָנָה:

4

If the sh'chiv me'ra said: "May so and so benefit from my property," "May he stand in it," or "May he be supported by it," the intended recipient does not acquire the property.

ד

אָמַר יֵהָנֶה פְּלוֹנִי בָּהֶן. יַעֲמֹד בָּהֶן. יִשָּׁעֵן בָּהֶן. לֹא קָנָה:

5

The following rules apply when a sh'chiv me'ra apportions all his property to another person. If he is not fit to inherit the property, he is awarded it as a gift. If he is fit to inherit it, he is awarded it as an inheritance.

When does the above apply? When the intended recipient is one of the dying man's daughters, one of the members of his household, one of his brothers or one of his other heirs. If, however, the dying man gave his entire estate to one of his sons, we assume that he appointed him an executor, as explained above.

ה

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁכָּתַב כָּל נְכָסָיו לְאַחֵר. אִם אֵינוֹ רָאוּי לְיָרְשׁוֹ נוֹטְלָן מִשּׁוּם מַתָּנָה. וְאִם רָאוּי לְיָרְשׁוֹ נוֹטְלָן מִשּׁוּם יְרֻשָּׁה. בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בְּשֶׁהָיָה הַיּוֹרֵשׁ הַזֶּה אַחַת מִבְּנוֹתָיו אוֹ אֶחָד מִכְּלַל בְּנֵי בָּנָיו אוֹ אֶחָד מִכְּלַל אֶחָיו וְכַיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן מִשְּׁאָר יוֹרְשִׁין. אֲבָל אִם כְּתָבָהוּ לְאֶחָד מִבָּנָיו לֹא עָשָׂהוּ אֶלָּא אַפּוֹטְרוֹפּוֹס כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ:

6

If before a person's death, he was asked: "To whom should your property be given? Perhaps to so and so?", and the dying man answers, "To whom else?" that person is awarded the property. We see whether he is fit to inherit the property. If he is, he is awarded it as an inheritance. If not, he is awarded it as a gift.

ו

מִי שֶׁאָמְרוּ לוֹ בִּשְׁעַת מִיתָתוֹ נְכָסֶיךָ לְמִי הֵן שֶׁמָּא לִפְלוֹנִי וְאָמַר לָהֶן אֶלָּא לְמִי. רוֹאִין אִם רָאוּי לְיָרְשׁוֹ נוֹטְלָן מִשּׁוּם יְרֻשָּׁה וְאִם לָאו נוֹטְלָן מִשּׁוּם מַתָּנָה:

7

When a convert has a son who was not conceived in holiness, since the son is not considered an heir - as will be explained in the section dealing with this subject - the convert cannot give the son his entire estate as a gift given by a sh'chiv me'ra. This applies to his entire estate and to a portion of his estate.

The rationale is that when speaking about a potential heir, there is no difference whether one uses wording that connotes an inheritance, or wording that connotes a gift. Thus, if in the situation mentioned above one said that the convert's son should acquire the property, it would be as if he inherited his father's estate.

ז

גֵּר שֶׁיֵּשׁ לוֹ בֵּן שֶׁאֵין הוֹרָתוֹ בִּקְדֻשָּׁה. הוֹאִיל וְאֵינוֹ יוֹרְשׁוֹ כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר בִּמְקוֹמוֹ. כָּךְ אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לִתֵּן לוֹ כָּל נְכָסָיו בְּמַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע. לֹא כָּל נְכָסָיו וְלֹא מִקְצָתָן. שֶׁלְּשׁוֹן יְרֻשָּׁה וּמַתָּנָה לְגַבֵּי יוֹרֵשׁ אֶחָד הֵן. וְאִם תֹּאמַר יִקְנֶה נִמְצָא זֶה יוֹרֵשׁ אֶת אָבִיו:

8

Therefore, if the dying convert gave his estate as a gift to any other convert as a matnat sh'chiv me'ra, the gift is effective.

ח

לְפִיכָךְ אִם נָתַן לְגֵר מִשְּׁאָר הַגֵּרִים מַתְּנָתוֹ קַיֶּמֶת:

9

When a sh'chiv me'ra acknowledges that he owes a debt of a particular amount to a given person and asks that it be given to him from his estate, his acknowledgement is of consequence and his request is fulfilled. This principle also applies when he states that a given utensil is an entrusted object belonging to another person and should be returned to him, a particular courtyard belongs to another person, a debt that another person is reputed to owe him is in fact owed to another person, or in any analogous situation.

Even if a convert acknowledges an obligation to a son who was not conceived in holiness, his statements are binding. Indeed, even if a person acknowledged a debt owed to a gentile, the gentile should be repaid.

ט

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁהוֹדָה שֶׁיֵּשׁ לוֹ לִפְלוֹנִי אֶצְלִי כָּךְ וְכָךְ תְּנוּהוּ לוֹ. אוֹ שֶׁאָמַר כְּלִי פְּלוֹנִי פִּקָּדוֹן הוּא בְּיָדִי לִפְלוֹנִי, תְּנוּהוּ לוֹ. חָצֵר פְּלוֹנִית שֶׁל פְּלוֹנִי הוּא. חוֹב שֶׁיֵּשׁ לִי בְּיַד פְּלוֹנִי אֵינוֹ שֶׁלִּי שֶׁל פְּלוֹנִי הוּא. בְּכָל אֵלּוּ הַדְּבָרִים וְכַיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן הוֹדָאָתוֹ הוֹדָיָה. וַאֲפִלּוּ הוֹדָה הַגֵּר לִבְנוֹ שֶׁאֵין הוֹרָתוֹ בִּקְדֻשָּׁה דְּבָרָיו קַיָּמִין. אֲפִלּוּ הוֹדָה שְׁכִיב מֵרַע לְעַכּוּ''ם נוֹתְנִין לוֹ:

10

When, by contrast, a sh'chiv me'ra orders that a gift be given to a gentile from his estate, we do not heed his words, for it is as if he commanded that a transgression be performed with his property.

י

אֲבָל שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁצִּוָּה לִתֵּן לְעַכּוּ''ם מַתָּנָה אֵין שׁוֹמְעִין לוֹ. שֶׁזֶּה כְּמִי שֶׁצִּוָּה לַעֲבֹר עֲבֵרָה מִנְּכָסָיו:

11

If a dying man says: "My servant, so and so, make him a free man," "I made him a free man," or "Behold he is a free man," we compel the person's heirs to free the servant. The rationale is that a servant is obligated to perform certain mitzvot.

יא

אָמַר פְּלוֹנִי עַבְדִּי עֲשׂוּ אוֹתוֹ בֶּן חוֹרִין. אוֹ שֶׁאָמַר עָשִׂיתִי אוֹתוֹ בֶּן חוֹרִין. אוֹ הֲרֵי הוּא בֶּן חוֹרִין. כּוֹפִין אֶת הַיּוֹרְשִׁין וּמְשַׁחְרְרִין אוֹתוֹ. שֶׁעֶבֶד יֶשְׁנוֹ בְּמִקְצָת מִצְוֹת:

12

If a dying man says: "Generate satisfaction for so and so, my maid-servant," satisfaction should be generated for her. She should be given only the type of work she desires out of all the types of work that are known to be performed by servants in that locale.

יב

אָמַר פְּלוֹנִית שִׁפְחָתִי עֲשׂוּ לָהּ קוֹרַת רוּחַ. עוֹשִׂין לָהּ קוֹרַת רוּחַ וְאֵינָהּ עוֹבֶדֶת אֶלָּא עֲבוֹדָה שֶׁהִיא רוֹצָה בָּהּ מִכָּל הָעֲבוֹדוֹת הַיְדוּעוֹת לַעֲבָדִים בְּאוֹתוֹ מָקוֹם:

13

When a sh'chiv me'ra apportions all his property to a specific person, and that person says: "I do not desire it," he does not acquire it.

יג

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁכָּתַב כָּל נְכָסָיו לְאֶחָד. וְאָמַר הַלָּה אֵינִי רוֹצֶה בָּהֶן לֹא קָנָה:

14

If the intended recipient remained silent, and then protests, he acquires the property. The rationale is that the words of a sh'chiv me'ra are considered as if they have been already recorded in a legal document and the property already transferred. Thus, once the recipient remains silent, he can no longer retract.

יד

שָׁתַק וְאַחַר כָּךְ צָוַח קָנָה. שֶׁדִּבְרֵי שְׁכִיב מֵרַע כִּכְתוּבִין וְכִמְסוּרִין הֵן. וְכֵיוָן שֶׁשָּׁתַק אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לַחְזֹר בָּהֶן:

15

When a sh'chiv me'ra apportions his property to one person and then changes his mind and apportions his property to another person, the latter person acquires it. For a sh'chiv me'ra has the right to retract until he dies.

The above applies whether he desires to retract the entire amount or only a portion of it, and whether he seeks to retain the property for himself or give it to another person.

Even if he apportioned the property to a person and had someone acquire the property on his behalf, and then apportioned it to another person and had someone acquire the property on his behalf, the latter person acquires it. The rationale is that even when a sh'chiv me'ra has someone acquire the property on the recipient's behalf, the transaction is still considered to be a gift given by a sh'chiv me'ra.

טו

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁכָּתַב לָזֶה וְחָזַר וְכָתַב לְאַחֵר הָאַחֲרוֹן קָנָה. שֶׁיֵּשׁ לוֹ לַחְזֹר עַד שֶׁיָּמוּת. בֵּין בַּכּל בֵּין בְּמִקְצָת בֵּין לְעַצְמוֹ בֵּין לְאַחֵר. וַאֲפִלּוּ כָּתַב וְזִכָּה לָרִאשׁוֹן וְכָתַב וְזִכָּה לָאַחֲרוֹן, הָאַחֲרוֹן קָנָה. שֶׁשְּׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁזִּכָּה עֲדַיִן מַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע הִיא:

16

If, however, a sh'chiv me'ra apportioned his property to a person, had someone acquire the property on the recipient's behalf and then confirmed the transfer with a kinyan, nothing can be done after the kinyan. He cannot retract - neither to give the property to another person nor to retain it for himself. This applies whether he gave his entire estate or only a portion of it.

טז

אֲבָל שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁכָּתַב וְזִכָּה וְקָנוּ מִיָּדוֹ אֵין לְאַחַר קִנְיָן כְּלוּם. וְאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לַחְזֹר בּוֹ לֹא לְאַחֵר וְלֹא לְעַצְמוֹ. בֵּין שֶׁנָּתַן הַכּל בֵּין שֶׁנָּתַן מִקְצָת:

17

When a sh'chiv me'ra retracts part of his apportionment of his estate, the entire apportionment is nullified.

What is implied? If he gave all his property to one person, and confirmed his gift with a kinyan to bolster the recipient's legal power, and then retracted and gave part of his property to another person and confirmed his gift with a kinyan to bolster the second recipient's legal power, the second person acquires the property he was given. The first person does not acquire anything. This applies whether the sh'chiv me'ra recovers or dies.

יז

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁחָזַר בְּמִקְצָת חָזַר בַּכּל. כֵּיצַד. נָתַן כָּל נְכָסָיו לָרִאשׁוֹן וְקָנוּ מִיָּדוֹ כְּדֵי לְיַפּוֹת אֶת כֹּחוֹ. וְחָזַר וְנָתַן מִקְצָתָן לְאַחֵר וְקָנוּ מִיָּדוֹ כְּדֵי לְיַפּוֹת אֶת כֹּחוֹ. הַשֵּׁנִי קָנָה. אֲבָל הָרִאשׁוֹן לֹא קָנָה כְּלוּם בֵּין שֶׁעָמַד בֵּין שֶׁמֵּת:

18

The following rules apply when a dying man gives a portion of his estate as a gift and confirms this with a kinyan, and then gives his entire estate to another person and confirms this gift with a kinyan to bolster the recipient's legal power. If the sh'chiv me'ra dies, the first recipient acquires the portion given to him, and the second recipient acquires the remainder. If the sh'chiv me'ra recovers, the first recipient acquires the portion given to him, and the second recipient does not acquire anything.

יח

נָתַן מִקְצָת נְכָסָיו וְקָנוּ מִיָּדוֹ. וְאַחַר כָּךְ נָתַן כֻּלָּן לְאַחֵר וְקָנוּ מִיָּדוֹ כְּדֵי לְיַפּוֹת אֶת כֹּחוֹ. אִם מֵת קָנָה הָרִאשׁוֹן הַמִּקְצָת וְקָנָה הַשֵּׁנִי אֶת הַשְּׁאָר. וְאִם עָמַד. רִאשׁוֹן קָנָה שֵׁנִי לֹא קָנָה:

19

When a sh'chiv me'ra consecrates all his property without retaining anything, declares his estate ownerless or divides his estate among the poor -if he recovers, he retracts everything.

יט

שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁהִקְדִּישׁ כָּל נְכָסָיו וְלֹא שִׁיֵּר כְּלוּם אוֹ הִפְקִיר אוֹ חִלְּקָן לָעֲנִיִּים. אִם עָמַד חוֹזֵר בַּכּל:

20

If a person conducts a sale while a sh'chiv me'ra, the sale is binding even if he recovers.

כ

מָכַר כְּשֶׁהוּא שְׁכִיב מֵרַע. מִמְכָּרוֹ קַיָּם כְּבָרִיא:

21

Different rules apply when by contrast, a dying man sells his entire estate. If the money itself that he received for the estate is still in his possession, he may retract if he recovers. If, however, he has spent the money, he cannot retract.

כא

מָכַר כָּל נְכָסָיו. אִם הַמָּעוֹת עַצְמָן קַיָּמוֹת אִם עָמַד חוֹזֵר. וְאִם הוֹצִיא הַמָּעוֹת אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לַחְזֹר:

22

The following laws apply when a legal document recording a gift is brought before us, and it does not explicitly state whether the giver was healthy when he gave it, or whether he was a sh'chiv me'ra; the giver claims that he was a sh'chiv me'ra, that he recovered and now desires to retract his gift; the recipient of the gift claims that the giver was healthy and therefore does not have the option of retracting. The recipient must bring proof that the giver was healthy. If he does not find proof, the giver must take a sh'vuat hesset supporting his claim. Afterwards, the landed property remains in the possession of the giver.

כב

מַתָּנָה שֶׁהִיא סְתָם וְלֹא נִתְפָּרֵשׁ בָּהּ שֶׁהָיָה בָּרִיא כְּשֶׁנָּתַן אוֹ שֶׁהָיָה שְׁכִיב מֵרַע. הוּא אוֹמֵר שְׁכִיב מֵרַע הָיִיתִי וַהֲרֵי עָמַדְתִּי וְאֶחֱזֹר בְּמַתְּנָתִי. וּמְקַבֵּל מַתָּנָה אוֹמֵר בָּרִיא הָיָה וְאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לַחְזֹר. עַל הַמְקַבֵּל לְהָבִיא רְאָיָה שֶׁבָּרִיא הָיָה. לֹא מָצָא רְאָיָה נִשְׁבָּע הַנּוֹתֵן שְׁבוּעַת הֶסֵּת וְיִפָּטֵר וְתַעֲמֹד הַקַּרְקַע בְּחֶזְקַת הַנּוֹתֵן:

23

Different rules apply if, however, the gift involved movable property, and that movable property is now in the possession of the recipient. Since the recipient could claim: "The movable property is mine," he is allowed to retain possession of the movable property, provided he takes a sh'vuat hesset that the giver was healthy when he gave this gift.

כג

אֲבָל אִם הָיוּ מִטַּלְטְלִין בְּיַד הַמְקַבֵּל. מִתּוֹךְ שֶׁיָּכוֹל לוֹמַר שֶׁלִּי הֵן יִשָּׁבַע הֶסֵּת שֶׁבָּרִיא הָיָה כְּשֶׁנָּתַן לוֹ מַתָּנָה זוֹ:

24

The following rule applies when a person dies, and a legal document recording a gift is discovered tied to his thigh. Even though the document is signed by witnesses and mentions that a klnyan was undertaken to bolster the legal power of the recipients, the document is of no consequence. We assume that after the sh'chiv me'ra had it written, he changed his mind and retracted his gift.

כד

מִי שֶׁמֵּת וְנִמְצֵאת מַתָּנָה קְשׁוּרָה עַל יְרֵכוֹ. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהִיא בְּעֵדִים וְקָנוּ מִיָּדוֹ לְיַפּוֹת כֹּחַ אֵלּוּ שֶׁנָּתַן לָהֶם הֲרֵי זוֹ אֵינָהּ כְּלוּם. שֶׁאֲנִי אוֹמֵר כְּתָבָהּ וְנִמְלַךְ:

25

If through the legal document the person transferred ownership over the property to another person, whether he is a legal heir or is not a legal heir, everything stated within takes effect, as is true with regard to all gifts given by a sh'chiv me'ra.

כה

וְאִם זִכָּה בָּהּ לְאַחֵר. בֵּין מִן הַיּוֹרְשִׁין בֵּין שֶׁאֵינוֹ מִן הַיּוֹרְשִׁין. כָּל הַדְּבָרִים שֶׁבָּהּ קַיָּמִין כְּכָל מַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע:

26

Similar laws apply when a sh'chiv me'ra has a promissory note composed stating that he owes money to a particular person - to one of his sons or to one of his other heirs - and he entrusts that document to a third party. If he tells that third party: "Hold this in your possession," but does not make any further statement, or tells him: "Leave this until I tell you what to do with it," and dies before making any further statements, the document is of no consequence.

כו

וְכֵן מִי שֶׁכָּתַב שְׁטַר חוֹב עַל עַצְמוֹ בְּשֵׁם אַחֵר. אוֹ בְּשֵׁם אֶחָד מִבָּנָיו [אוֹ] מִן הַיּוֹרְשִׁין. וְנָתַן הַשְּׁטָר [עַל] יַד שָׁלִישׁ וְאָמַר לוֹ יִהְיֶה זֶה אֶצְלְךָ. וְלֹא פֵּרֵשׁ לוֹ כְּלוּם. אוֹ שֶׁאָמַר לוֹ הַנַּח עַד שֶׁאֹמַר לְךָ מַה תַּעֲשֶׂה וּמֵת. הֲרֵי זוֹ אֵינָהּ כְּלוּם:

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The Mishneh Torah was the Rambam's (Rabbi Moses ben Maimon) magnum opus, a work spanning hundreds of chapters and describing all of the laws mentioned in the Torah. To this day it is the only work that details all of Jewish observance, including those laws which are only applicable when the Holy Temple is in place. Participating in one of the annual study cycles of these laws (3 chapters/day, 1 chapter/day, or Sefer Hamitzvot) is a way we can play a small but essential part in rebuilding the final Temple.
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