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Rambam - 1 Chapter a Day

Arachim Vacharamim - Chapter 7

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Arachim Vacharamim - Chapter 7


Consecrated articles1 may not be redeemed with land, nor with servants, for an equation was created between servants and land,2 nor with promissory notes for their physical substance is not of financial worth.3 [This is derived from the expression:]4 "And he shall give the silver." [This includes] silver and other movable property that is worth silver,5 even bran.6


הַהֶקְדֵשׁוֹת אֵין פּוֹדִין אוֹתָן לֹא בְּקַרְקַע. וְלֹא בַּעֲבָדִים שֶׁהֲרֵי הֻקְּשׁוּ לְקַרְקָעוֹת. וְלֹא בִּשְׁטָרוֹת (מִפְּנֵי) שֶׁאֵין גּוּפָן מָמוֹן שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר וְנָתַן אֶת הַכֶּסֶף. אֶחָד הַכֶּסֶף וְאֶחָד שְׁאָר הַמִּטַּלְטְלִין שֶׁשָּׁוִין כֶּסֶף. וַאֲפִילוּ סֻבִּין:


Whenever a person redeems his consecrated property, he must add an additional fifth. The person who consecrated the property himself, his wife, or his heirs must all add a fifth, as we explained.7 This fifth must also only be movable property. The fifth itself becomes like the consecrated property and the same laws apply to them both.


כָּל הַפּוֹדֶה קָדָשָׁיו מוֹסִיף חֹמֶשׁ. וְאֶחָד הַמַּקְדִּישׁ עַצְמוֹ אוֹ אִשְׁתּוֹ אוֹ הַיּוֹרֵשׁ מוֹסִיפִים חֹמֶשׁ כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ. וְאַף הַחֹמֶשׁ לֹא יִהְיֶה אֶלָּא מִן הַמִּטַּלְטְלִין. וְהַחֹמֶשׁ שֶׁמּוֹסִיף הֲרֵי הוּא כְּהֶקְדֵּשׁ עַצְמוֹ וְדִין אֶחָד לָהֶם:


When a person redeems his consecrated articles, [failure to pay] the additional fifth does not hold back [the redemption]. Once the person paid the principal, the consecrated article is considered as an ordinary article and it is permitted to benefit from it [according to Scriptural Law]. According to Rabbinic Law, it is forbidden to benefit from it until one pays the additional fifth, lest one be negligent and fail to pay it. Nevertheless, on the Sabbath, [our Sages] gave one permission to partake [of a consecrated article that was redeemed] although the fifth was not paid for the sake of the enjoyment of the Sabbath.8 [Another reason for leniency is that] it is being demanded by the Temple treasurers.9


הַפּוֹדֶה קָדָשָׁיו אֵין הַחֹמֶשׁ מְעַכֵּב. אֶלָּא מֵאַחַר שֶׁנָּתַן אֶת הַקֶּרֶן יָצָא הַקֹּדֶשׁ לְחֻלִּין וּמֻתָּר לֵהָנוֹת בּוֹ. וּמִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים שֶׁאָסוּר לוֹ לֵהָנוֹת עַד שֶׁיִּתֵּן הַחֹמֶשׁ שֶׁמָּא יִפְשַׁע וְלֹא יִתֵּן. אֲבָל בְּשַׁבָּת מִפְּנֵי עֹנֶג שַׁבָּת הִתִּירוּ לוֹ לֶאֱכל וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁעֲדַיִן לֹא נָתַן אֶת הַחֹמֶשׁ וַהֲרֵי הַגִּזְבָּרִין תּוֹבְעִין אוֹתוֹ:


[The following laws apply with regard to animals] consecrated for the sake of [sacrifice on] the altar which were [disqualified by] a blemish:10 If the person who consecrated it redeems it, he must add an additional fifth11 as is the rule with regard to other consecrated articles.12 The person who consecrated it for his own purposes is the one obligated to add a fifth, not the one who derives atonement through the [sacrifice after] it was redeemed.13

[One is] obligated to add a fifth [when redeeming the article that was] consecrated originally, but one [need] not add a fifth [when redeeming an article] whose consecration was a derivative,14 as [implied by Leviticus 27:15]: "If the one who consecrated [it] will redeem his home, he must add a fifth." [The verse mentions] "one who consecrated," and not one who extends that holiness.


קָדְשֵׁי מִזְבֵּחַ שֶׁנָּפַל בָּהֶם מוּם וְנִפְדּוּ. אִם פָּדָה הַמַּקְדִּישׁ עַצְמוֹ מוֹסִיף חֹמֶשׁ כִּשְׁאָר הַהֶקְדֵּשׁוֹת. וְהַמַּקְדִּישׁ שֶׁפָּדָה לְעַצְמוֹ הוּא שֶׁמּוֹסִיף חֹמֶשׁ לֹא הַמִּתְכַּפֵּר בָּהּ שֶׁפְּדָאָהּ. וְהֶקְדֵּשׁ רִאשׁוֹן הוּא שֶׁחַיָּב בְּתוֹסֶפֶת חֹמֶשׁ. אֲבָל הֶקְדֵּשׁ שֵׁנִי אֵינוֹ מוֹסִיף עָלָיו חֹמֶשׁ. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ויקרא כז טו) "וְאִם הַמַּקְדִּישׁ יִגְאַל אֶת בֵּיתוֹ וְיָסַף חֲמִישִׁית". הַמַּקְדִּישׁ וְלֹא הַמַּתְפִּיס:


Accordingly, if one transferred the holiness of a [consecrated] animal - whether one consecrated for the sake of improvements to the Temple15 or one consecrated for [sacrifice on] the altar that became blemished16 - to another animal or exchanged an animal consecrated for [sacrifice on] the altar,17 When he redeems the second animal to which he transferred the holiness or which he exchanged for the sacrificial animal, he is not required to add a fifth.


לְפִיכָךְ אִם חִלֵּל בְּהֵמָה עַל בְּהֵמָה שְׁנִיָּה בֵּין בְּקָדְשֵׁי בֶּדֶק הַבַּיִת בֵּין בְּקָדְשֵׁי מִזְבֵּחַ שֶׁנָּפַל בָּהֶם מוּם. אוֹ שֶׁהֵמִיר בְּקָדְשֵׁי מִזְבֵּחַ. כְּשֶׁהוּא פּוֹדֶה אֶת הַשְּׁנִיָּה שֶׁחִלֵּל עָלֶיהָ אוֹ אֶת הַתְּמוּרָה לְעַצְמוֹ אֵינוֹ מוֹסִיף חֹמֶשׁ:


There is an unresolved doubt [in the following situation]: A person set aside a guilt offering for the sake of his atonement and it became blemished. He added a fifth to its value and transferred its holiness to another animal and received atonement by [sacrificing] another guilt offering.18 As explained in the appropriate place,19 [the animal to which the holiness was transferred] is left to pasture [until it becomes blemished and then its holiness transferred to a third animal which is sacrificed as a burnt offering.20 The question is:] Are we required to add a fifth [when redeeming that animal], because it is a burnt offering, it involves another body21 and is consecrated for a different purpose? Or are we not so required because its [holiness] stems from the initial consecration for which a fifth was already added.22


הַמַּפְרִישׁ אָשָׁם לְהִתְכַּפֵּר בּוֹ וְנָפַל בּוֹ מוּם וְהוֹסִיף עָלָיו חֹמֶשׁ וְחִלְּלוֹ עַל בְּהֵמָה אַחֶרֶת וְנִתְכַּפֵּר בְּאָשָׁם אַחֵר וְנִתְּקָה הַבְּהֵמָה שֶׁחִלֵּל עָלֶיהָ לִרְעִיָּה כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר בִּמְקוֹמוֹ. הֲרֵי הוּא סָפֵק אִם מוֹסִיף עָלֶיהָ חֹמֶשׁ הוֹאִיל וְהוּא קָרְבַּן עוֹלָה וַהֲרֵי הוּא גּוּף אֶחָד וּקְדֻשָּׁה אַחֶרֶת. אוֹ אֵינוֹ מוֹסִיף עָלֶיהָ חֹמֶשׁ מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהִיא בָּאָה מִכֹּחַ הֶקְדֵּשׁ רִאשׁוֹן שֶׁכְּבָר הוֹסִיף עָלָיו חֹמֶשׁ:


The concept of exchanging an animal23 does not apply with regard to animals consecrated for the sake of improvements to the Temple. For the Torah dealt with the concept of exchanging holiness only with regard to [animals] consecrated for [sacrifice on] the altar.24

What is implied? If a person had an ordinary animal and an animal consecrated for the sake of improvements to the Temple before him. If he said: "Let this one be substituted for this one" or "Let this one be exchanged for this one," his statements are of no consequence.25 If, however, he says: "This one is in place of this one" or "The holiness of this one is transferred to this one,"26 his statements are binding. The first animal returns to ordinary status and [its holiness] becomes attached to the second.


קָדְשֵׁי בֶּדֶק הַבַּיִת אֵין עוֹשִׂין תְּמוּרָה שֶׁלֹּא דָּנָה תּוֹרָה בִּתְמוּרָה אֶלָּא בְּקָדְשֵׁי מִזְבֵּחַ. כֵּיצַד. הָיוּ לְפָנָיו בֶּהֱמַת חֻלִּין וּבֶהֱמַת קָדְשֵׁי בֶּדֶק הַבַּיִת וְאָמַר זוֹ חֲלוּפַת זוֹ אוֹ זוֹ תְּמוּרַת זוֹ לֹא אָמַר כְּלוּם. אֲבָל אִם אָמַר הֲרֵי זוֹ תַּחַת זוֹ הֲרֵי זוֹ מְחֻלֶּלֶת עַל זוֹ דְּבָרָיו קַיָּמִין וְיָצְאתָה הַבְּהֵמָה הָרִאשׁוֹנָה לְחֻלִּין וְנִתְפְּסָה הַשְּׁנִיָּה:


The initial and preferred manner is that both [animals] consecrated for the sake of the improvement of the Temple and entities consecrated for the sake of the altar that became blemished should be redeemed only for their worth. If one transgressed and redeemed them for less than their worth, even if one redeemed consecrated property worth 100 dinarim with an article worth a p'rutah,27 the article is redeemed.28 It is considered as ordinary property and one is permitted to benefit from it. According to Rabbinic Law, it is necessary to evaluate its worth29 and the person redeeming it is obligated to make up the monetary difference.


אֶחָד קָדְשֵׁי בֶּדֶק הַבַּיִת וְאֶחָד קָדְשֵׁי מִזְבֵּחַ שֶׁנָּפַל בָּהֶן מוּם אֵין פּוֹדִין אוֹתָן לְכַתְּחִלָּה אֶלָּא בְּשָׁוְיֵיהֶן. וְאִם עָבַר וְחִלְּלָן עַל פָּחוֹת מִשָּׁוְיֵיהֶן אֲפִלּוּ הֶקְדֵּשׁ שָׁוֶה מֵאָה דִּינָר שֶׁחִלְּלוֹ עַל שְׁוֵה פְּרוּטָה הֲרֵי זֶה פָּדוּי וְיָצָא לְחֻלִּין וּמֻתָּר לֵהָנוֹת בּוֹ. וּמִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים שֶׁהוּא צָרִיךְ חֲקִירַת דָּמִים וְחַיָּב לְהַשְׁלִים אֶת דָּמָיו:


What is implied? A person had an animal consecrated [to be offered on] the altar and it became blemished. If it is worth ten [zuz] and there is an ordinary animal worth five and he says: "The holiness of this one is transferred to this," it is redeemed and its status becomes that of an ordinary animal. He must, however, pay the additional five [to the Temple treasury]. In the same way, [if a similar transfer was made] when the first animal was consecrated to the Temple treasury, its status becomes that of an ordinary animal. It may be shorn and put to work30 and the second animal assumes its [consecrated status] according to Scriptural Law. Nevertheless, according to Rabbinic Law, it is necessary to evaluate its worth to see whether the one to which its holiness was transferred was of equivalent value. If not, he must make up the monetary difference.


כֵּיצַד. הָיְתָה לוֹ בֶּהֱמַת קָדְשֵׁי מִזְבֵּחַ שֶׁנָּפַל בָּהּ מוּם וַהֲרֵי הִיא שָׁוָה עֲשָׂרָה וּבֶהֱמַת חֻלִּין שֶׁשָּׁוָה חֲמִשָּׁה וְאָמַר הֲרֵי זוֹ מְחֻלֶּלֶת עַל זוֹ הֲרֵי זוֹ נִפְדֵית וְיָצָאת לְחֻלִּין אֲבָל צָרִיךְ לְהַשְׁלִים הַחֲמִשָּׁה. וְכֵן אִם הָיְתָה הַבְּהֵמָה הָרִאשׁוֹנָה קָדְשֵׁי בֶּדֶק הַבַּיִת הֲרֵי זוֹ יָצָאת לְחֻלִּין לְהִגָּזֵז וּלְהֵעָבֵד וְתִכָּנֵס הַשְּׁנִיָּה תַּחְתֶּיהָ דִּין תּוֹרָה. אֲבָל מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם צָרִיךְ חֲקִירַת דָּמִים אִם הָיְתָה זוֹ שֶׁחִלֵּל עָלֶיהָ שָׁוָה אוֹ יַשְׁלִים דָּמֶיהָ:


If three people evaluated [the two animals involved] and said they were of equivalent value, the evaluation is not nullified even if 100 come afterwards and say that the animal that was consecrated was more valuable. Since the evaluation [of the animal's] worth is a Rabbinic requirement, our Sages were not strict with regard to it. If, however, two people made the original evaluation and then three people came and say that even the slightest advantage was taken of the Temple treasury,31 [the animal] is reevaluated.


שָׁמוּ אוֹתָהּ שְׁלֹשָׁה וְאָמְרוּ שֶׁזּוֹ בְּדָמֶיהָ אֲפִלּוּ בָּאוּ אַחַר כֵּן מֵאָה וְאָמְרוּ שֶׁל קֹדֶשׁ הָיְתָה יָפָה אֵינוֹ חוֹזֵר. הוֹאִיל וַחֲקִירַת הַדָּמִים מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם לֹא הֶחְמִירוּ בָּהּ. אֲבָל אִם שָׁמוּ אוֹתָהּ שְׁנַיִם וּבָאוּ שְׁלֹשָׁה וְאָמְרוּ שֶׁהוֹנָה הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ בְּכָל שֶׁהוּא חוֹזֵר:


We do not redeem consecrated articles with a rough estimation instead, their worth is carefully evaluated, as we explained.32 If one redeemed a consecrated article [after making merely a rough estimation], the Temple treasury is given the upper hand.

What is implied? One says: "May the holiness of this cow that is consecrated33 be transferred to this cow" or "May the holiness of this garment that is consecrated be transferred to this garment," the consecrated article is redeemed and the Temple treasury is given the upper hand. If the second article is worth more than the first, the Temple treasurers take it and remain silent. If it is not worth the value of the first, [the redeemer] must pay the difference as we explained34 and he must add a fifth.

If, however, he said: May the holiness of this garment that is consecrated be transferred to this garment that is worth ten selaim" or "May the holiness of this cow that is consecrated be transferred to this cow that is worth ten selaim," he is required to add a fifth and must give two and a half selaim.35 [The rationale is that] he redeemed it at a fixed price. It is not necessary to add a fifth when redeeming the second animal, as we explained.36


אֵין פּוֹדִין אֶת הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ אַכְסָרָה אֶלָּא בַּחֲקִירַת דָּמִים כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ. וְאִם פָּדָה יַד הֶקְדֵּשׁ עַל הָעֶלְיוֹנָה. כֵּיצַד. פָּרָה זוֹ תַּחַת פָּרָה זוֹ שֶׁל הֶקְדֵּשׁ טַלִּית זוֹ תַּחַת טַלִּית זוֹ שֶׁל הֶקְדֵּשׁ. הֶקְדֵּשׁוֹ פָּדוּי וְיַד הֶקְדֵּשׁ עַל הָעֶלְיוֹנָה. אִם הָיְתָה הַשְּׁנִיָּה יָפָה מִן הָרִאשׁוֹנָה בְּיוֹתֵר לוֹקְחִין אוֹתָהּ הַגִּזְבָּרִין וְשׁוֹתְקִין. וְאִם אֵינָהּ יָפָה מְשַׁלֵּם אֶת הַדָּמִים כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ וּמוֹסִיף חֹמֶשׁ. אֲבָל אִם אָמַר טַלִּית זוֹ בְּעֶשֶׂר סְלָעִים תַּחַת טַלִּית שֶׁל הֶקְדֵּשׁ וּפָרָה זוֹ בְּעֶשֶׂר סְלָעִים תַּחַת פָּרָה זוֹ שֶׁל הֶקְדֵּשׁ. אֲפִלּוּ הָיְתָה שֶׁל הֶקְדֵּשׁ שָׁוָה חָמֵשׁ וְשֶׁלּוֹ עֶשֶׂר הֲרֵי זֶה מוֹסִיף חֹמֶשׁ וְנוֹתֵן שְׁתֵּי סְלָעִים וּמֶחֱצָה שֶׁהֲרֵי בְּדָמִים קְצוּבִים פָּדָה. וּשְׁנִיָּה אֵינָהּ טְעוּנָה חֹמֶשׁ כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ:


[The following rules apply when a person] redeems an article from the Temple treasury. If he drew the article into his possession37 when it was worth a maneh,38 but did not pay the money until it appreciated to 200, he must pay 200. [This is indicated by the expression:]39 "And he will pay the money and it will become his." It becomes his when he pays the money.40

If he drew it into his possession when it was worth 200, but did not pay the money until it depreciated to a maneh, he must pay 200. For the legal power of the Temple treasury should not be less than that of an ordinary person.41 He acquired it through drawing it into his possession and became liable for its value then.


הַפּוֹדֶה מִיַּד הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ מָשַׁךְ בְּמָנֶה וְלֹא הִסְפִּיק לִתֵּן הַדָּמִים עַד שֶׁעָמַד בְּמָאתַיִם נוֹתֵן מָאתַיִם שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר וְנָתַן אֶת הַכֶּסֶף וְקָם לוֹ. בִּנְתִינַת הַכֶּסֶף הוּא שֶׁלּוֹ. מְשָׁכוֹ בְּמָאתַיִם וְלֹא הִסְפִּיק לִתֵּן אֶת הַדָּמִים עַד שֶׁעָמַד בְּמָנֶה נוֹתֵן מָאתַיִם. לֹא יְהֵא כֹּחַ הֶדְיוֹט חָמוּר מִכֹּחַ הֶקְדֵּשׁ. וַהֲרֵי קָנָה בִּמְשִׁיכָה וְנִתְחַיֵּב בַּדָּמִים:


If he redeemed it at 200 and paid the money42 and did not draw into his possession until it depreciated to a maneh, he is considered to have acquired it when he paid the money.43 He should draw his article into his possession and the Temple treasury acquires the 200.

If he redeemed it at a maneh and paid the money, but did not draw it into his possession until it appreciated to 200, the redemption is allowed to stand. He is only required to pay the maneh that he paid already. In this instance, we do not say: The legal power of the Temple treasury should not be less than that of an ordinary person.44 [The rationale is that] even an ordinary person would not be able to retract unless he receives the admonition mi shepara, as will be explained in the appropriate place.45 And it is not proper to administer the admonition mi shepara to the Temple treasury.


פָּדָה בְּמָאתַיִם וְנָתַן הַדָּמִים וְלֹא הִסְפִּיק לְמָשְׁכוֹ עַד שֶׁעָמַד בְּמָנֶה כְּבָר קָנָה בִּנְתִינַת הַכֶּסֶף וּמוֹשֵׁךְ אֶת שֶׁלּוֹ וְזָכָה הֶקְדֵּשׁ בְּמָאתַיִם. פָּדָהוּ בְּמָנֶה וְנָתַן הַדָּמִים וְלֹא הִסְפִּיק לְמָשְׁכוֹ עַד שֶׁעָמַד בְּמָאתַיִם מַה שֶּׁפָּדָה פָּדוּי וְאֵינוֹ נוֹתֵן אֶלָּא הַמָּנֶה שֶׁכְּבָר נָתַן. וְאֵין אוֹמְרִין כָּאן לֹא יְהֵא כֹּחַ הֶדְיוֹט חָמוּר מִכֹּחַ הֶקְדֵּשׁ. שֶׁאֲפִלּוּ הֶדְיוֹט אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לַחְזֹר בּוֹ עַד שֶׁיְּקַבֵּל מִי שֶׁפָּרַע כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר בִּמְקוֹמוֹ וְאֵין הֶקְדֵּשׁ רָאוּי לְקַבֵּל מִי שֶׁפָּרַע:


When a person consecrates all of his possessions and he is liable to [pay the money due his] wife [by virtue of her] ketubah or promissory notes [owed to] creditors, the woman may not collect [the money due her by virtue of her] ketubah from the Temple treasury, nor may a creditor collect the debt due him. The rationale is that consecration absolves prior liens.46 [Nevertheless,] when the Temple treasury sells his property and the field loses its consecrated status, the creditor and his wife may collect it from the redeemer, for the lien remains on this landed property.47


הַמַּקְדִּישׁ כָּל נְכָסָיו וְהָיְתָה עָלָיו כְּתֻבַּת אִשָּׁה אוֹ שִׁטְרֵי בַּעֲלֵי חוֹבוֹת. אֵין הָאִשָּׁה יְכוֹלָה לִגְבּוֹת כְּתֻבָּתָהּ מִן הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ וְלֹא בַּעַל חוֹב אֶת חוֹבוֹ. שֶׁהַהֶקְדֵּשׁ מַפְקִיעַ הַשִּׁעְבּוּד שֶׁקָּדַם. אֲבָל כְּשֶׁיִּמְכֹּר הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ הַקַּרְקַע שֶׁלּוֹ וְתֵצֵא הַשָּׂדֶה לְחֻלִּין יֵשׁ לְבַעַל חוֹב וּלְאִשָּׁה לִגְבּוֹת מִן הַפּוֹדֶה שֶׁהֲרֵי שִׁעְבּוּדָהּ עוֹמֵד עַל קַרְקַע זוֹ:


To what can this be compared? To two purchasers. [One bought the property from a woman's husband and the other from the first purchaser. The woman] wrote to the first [purchaser] "I have no claim against you."48 [After] he sells it to the second person, she may expropriate the money due her from him.49


הָא לְמָה זֶה דּוֹמֶה לִשְׁנֵי לָקוֹחוֹת שֶׁכָּתְבָה לָרִאשׁוֹן דִּין וּדְבָרִים אֵין לִי עִמְּךָ וּמָכַר לַשֵּׁנִי שֶׁהִיא טוֹרֶפֶת מִן הַשֵּׁנִי:


How is this land redeemed?50 We administer an oath to the woman or the creditor first as is the process whenever one seeks to expropriate property that is on lien.51 Afterwards, we publicly announce its sale for 60 days in the morning and in the evening, as we explained.52 We say:53 How much a person will desire to give for this field in order to pay the woman [the money due her by virtue of] her ketubah or the creditor his debt? A purchaser redeems it and acquires it even for a dinar,54 so that it is not said that consecrated property was released without being redeemed. Then the redeemer comes and gives the woman [the money due her by virtue of] her ketubah or the creditor his debt. [This applies] even if the debt was 100 [zuz] and the field worth only 90, [for] the person who redeems it does so for this sake.

If, however, the debt was twice the value of the field, e.g., the field was worth 100 and it was on lien to a debt or a woman's ketubah for 200, we do not redeem it with the intent of paying the debt or [the money due the woman by virtue of] her ketubah. Instead, it is redeemed unconditionally,55 for if such a stipulation was required to be made, it would not be redeemed at all.


וְכֵיצַד פּוֹדִין קַרְקַע זֶה. מַשְׁבִּיעִין אֶת הָאִשָּׁה אוֹ בַּעַל חוֹב תְּחִלָּה כְּדֶרֶךְ כָּל הַבָּא לִפָּרַע מִנְּכָסִים מְשֻׁעְבָּדִים וְאַחַר כָּךְ מַכְרִיזִין עֲלֵיהֶם שִׁשִּׁים יוֹם בַּבֹּקֶר וּבָעֶרֶב כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ. וְאוֹמְדִין כַּמָּה אָדָם רוֹצֶה לִתֵּן בַּשָּׂדֶה עַל מְנָת לִתֵּן לְאִשָּׁה כְּתֻבָּתָהּ וּלְבַעַל חוֹב אֶת חוֹבוֹ. וְאַחַר שֶׁפּוֹדִין אוֹתָהּ וְלוֹקֵחַ אוֹתָהּ הַלּוֹקֵחַ אֲפִלּוּ בְּדִינָר כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא יֹאמְרוּ הֶקְדֵּשׁ יוֹצֵא בְּלֹא פִּדְיוֹן. חוֹזֵר הַפּוֹדֶה וּמַגְבֶּה לָאִשָּׁה כְּתֻבָּתָהּ אוֹ לַבַּעַל חוֹב אֶת חוֹבוֹ. אֲפִלּוּ הָיָה הַחוֹב מֵאָה וְהַשָּׂדֶה שָׁוָה תִּשְׁעִים עַל מְנָת כָּךְ פּוֹדֶה אוֹתָהּ הָרוֹצֶה לִפְדּוֹתָהּ. אֲבָל אִם הָיָה הַחוֹב שְׁנַיִם בִּדְמֵי הַשָּׂדֶה כְּגוֹן שֶׁהָיְתָה שָׁוָה מֵאָה וְיֵשׁ עָלָיו חוֹב וּכְתֻבַּת אִשָּׁה מָאתַיִם אֵין פּוֹדִין אוֹתָהּ עַל מְנָת לִתֵּן הַחוֹב אוֹ הַכְּתֻבָּה אֶלָּא פּוֹדִין אוֹתָהּ סְתָם שֶׁאִם הִתְנוּ לִתֵּן אֵינָהּ נִפְדֵית כְּלָל:


When a person consecrates all of his property, divorces his wife, and [leaves her to] collect [the money due her by virtue of] her ketubah from the one who redeems [his landed property] from the Temple treasury, she cannot collect [the debt] until he takes a vow,56 forbidding her to benefit from him. [This is a safeguard instituted,] lest an attempt be made to deceive the Temple treasury.57 We do not say that were he to desire [to nullify the consecration of his property], he should say: "I consecrated it in error," and ask a sage [to nullify] his consecration [in which instance, his property] would return to him.58


הַמַּקְדִּישׁ כָּל נְכָסָיו וְאַחַר כָּךְ גֵּרֵשׁ אֶת אִשְׁתּוֹ וְגָבְתָה כְּתֻבָּתָהּ מִן הַפּוֹדֶה מִן הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ אֵינוֹ גּוֹבֶה עַד שֶׁיַּדִּירֶנָּה הֲנָאָה. שֶׁמָּא קְנוּנְיָא עָשׂוּ עַל הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ. וְאֵין אוֹמְרִין אִלּוּ רָצָה הָיָה אוֹמֵר בְּטָעוּת הִקְדַּשְׁתִּי וְיִשָּׁאֵל עַל הֶקְדֵּשׁוֹ לְחָכָם וְיַחְזֹר לוֹ:


Similarly, after59 consecrating his property, a person's word is not accepted if he says: "I owe a maneh to so-and-so" or "This utensil belongs to so-and-so."60 [In this instance, we fear that] he is attempting to deceive the Temple treasury.61 Even if the creditor has a promissory note, he cannot use it to expropriate [the property from the Temple treasury].62 Instead, he must collect his due like the other creditors due, as explained.63


וְכֵן אֵין נֶאֱמָן לוֹמַר אַחַר שֶׁהִקְדִּישׁ מָנֶה לִפְלוֹנִי חוֹב עָלַי אוֹ כְּלִי זֶה שֶׁל פְּלוֹנִי הוּא. שֶׁמָּא יַעֲשׂוּ קְנוּנְיָא עַל הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ. וַאֲפִלּוּ הָיָה שְׁטָר בְּיַד בַּעַל חוֹב אֵינוֹ גּוֹבֶה עַל פִּי זֶה אֶלָּא כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁגּוֹבִין כָּל בַּעֲלֵי חוֹבוֹת כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ:


When does the above apply? With regard to a healthy person. If, by contrast a mortally ill person consecrates all of his property and at the time he consecrates it says: "I owe a maneh to so-and-so," his word is accepted. [The rationale is that] a person will not try to deceive the Temple treasury at the time of his death and sin for the sake of others, for he is going to die.64 Therefore if he says: "Give [the creditor his debt]," [the creditor] may collect it without having to take an oath.

If he did not say: "Give [the creditor...]," we do not give him this money unless he has a promissory note whose authenticity has been verified. [In that instance,] he may collect [his debt] from the Temple treasury, because of the statements [the debtor made] on his deathbed.65 If he said to give [the money to the creditor] after he consecrated [his property],66 we do not heed his statements. Instead, this person is considered like other creditors. If the authenticity of his promissory note is verified, he must take an oath.67 He may then expropriate [the property] from the one who redeems it, but not from the Temple treasury.68


בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בְּבָרִיא. אֲבָל חוֹלֶה שֶׁהִקְדִּישׁ כָּל נְכָסָיו וְאָמַר בְּשָׁעָה שֶׁהִקְדִּישׁ מָנֶה לִפְלוֹנִי בְּיָדִי נֶאֱמָן. שֶׁאֵין אָדָם עוֹשֶׂה עָרְמָה עַל הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ בִּשְׁעַת מִיתָתוֹ וְחוֹטֵא לַאֲחֵרִים שֶׁהֲרֵי הוּא הוֹלֵךְ לָמוּת. לְפִיכָךְ אִם אָמַר תְּנוּ אוֹתָהּ לוֹ נוֹטֵל בְּלֹא שְׁבוּעָה. וְאִם לֹא אָמַר תְּנוּ אֵין נוֹתְנִין אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן הָיָה בְּיָדוֹ שְׁטָר מְקֻיָּם. הֲרֵי זֶה נוֹטֵל מִן הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ מִפְּנֵי הַצַּוָּאָה. וְאִם אַחַר שֶׁהִקְדִּישׁ אָמַר תְּנוּ אֵין שׁוֹמְעִין לוֹ אֶלָּא הֲרֵי הוּא כִּשְׁאָר בַּעֲלֵי חוֹבוֹת. אִם נִתְקַיֵּם שְׁטָרוֹ נִשְׁבָּע וְגוֹבֶה מִן הַפּוֹדֶה וְלֹא מִן הַהֶקְדֵּשׁ:


We do not take heed of a rumor that says that a certain person declared all of his property ownerless, consecrated it, or made it a dedication offering unless there is clear proof69 [of its validity].


מִי שֶׁיָּצָא עָלָיו קוֹל שֶׁהִפְקִיר אֶת נְכָסָיו אוֹ הִקְדִּישָׁן אוֹ הֶחֱרִימָן אֵין חוֹשְׁשִׁין לוֹ עַד שֶׁתִּהְיֶה שָׁם רְאָיָה בְּרוּרָה:

Test Yourself on This Chapter


Articles which a person consecrated for the sake of improvements to the Temple.


This applies not only in this context, but also in many other areas of Jewish business law. See Hilchot Sh'vuot 7:4; Hilchot Geneivah 2:2, et al.


A promissory note itself is not worth money. It is valuable because of the debt that it records.


There is no such verse in the Tanach. The Rambam is referring to wording used by our Sages in Kiddushin 5a. They are also referring to a verse, but have shortened and edited Leviticus 27:19.


This principle also applies in many aspects of Jewish business law. Objects that are worth silver may be used for the same purposes as silver (Hilchot Nizkei Mammon 8:10).


I.e., an object of minimal value.


See Chapter 4, Halachah 5; Chapter 5, Halachah 3, and notes. As explained there, we are speaking of a fifth of the new total, a fourth of the original amount.


Our Sages did not desire that his failure to pay the fifth prevent him from partaking of the entity, for this would reduce his Sabbath pleasure.


Since the treasurers demand payment of the fifth the person is not likely to forget. Nevertheless, this rationale itself is not sufficient reason for leniency. Hence, during the week, when the mitzvah of delighting in the Sabbath does not apply, the treasurers' reminder is not sufficient reason to permit use of the entity (see Bava Metzia 54a).


See Chapter 5, Halachah 11, which speaks of the redemption of such animals.


This is reflected by Leviticus 27:13.


See Halachah 2.


I.e., if a person was obligated to bring a sacrifice and a colleague set aside an animal from his own resources for him to offer, that person required to bring the sacrifice is not required to pay an additional fifth if he redeems the animal.


I.e., it was consecrated in the process of redeeming another article, as the Rambam proceeds to explain in the following halachah. See Halachah 11 for details regarding the redemption of an article by transferring its holiness to a second article.


In which instance, it must be redeemed whether blemished or unblemished. See Chapter 5, Halachot 5 and 12; see also Hilchot Temurah 1:12.


Since it is blemished, it is necessary to redeem it, as stated in Chapter 5, Halachot 11-12.


The Rambam is speaking about a practice, temurah, that involves transferring the holiness of an animal consecrated as a sacrifice to another animal. Leviticus 27:10 states that it is forbidden to make such an exchange, but if one does so both the animal originally consecrated and the one exchanged for it remain consecrated (ibid.:33; see Hilchot Temurah 1:1).


Because the animal to which the holiness was transferred was lost or unable to be used for a sacrifice for other reasons.


Hilchot Pesulei HaMukdashim 4:14-15.


For he is no longer obligated to bring a guilt offering, but must offer the worth of the animal as a sacrifice.


I.e., it is not the same animal that was originally consecrated. Our translation represents a slight variation from the standard published text of the Mishneh Torah that was made based on authentic manuscripts and early printings.


Hence although the person is not obligated to pay the additional fifth, if the Temple treasurer seizes it, he cannot be required to relinquish it.


The Rambam is speaking about a practice, temurah, that involves transferring the holiness of an animal consecrated as a sacrifice to another animal. Leviticus 27:10 states that it is forbidden to make such an exchange, but if one does so both the animal originally consecrated and the one exchanged for it remain consecrated (ibid.:33; see Hilchot Temurah 1:1).


Temurah 13a relates that the concept of temurah, exchange, applies only with regard to sacrifices and an animal consecrated for the sake of improvements to the Temple is not considered a sacrifice.


For these expressions imply temurah, exchange.


I.e., using statements that indicate that he desires to redeem the animal and not exchange it.


A coin of minimal worth.


With regard to transactions between men, the laws of ona'ah (unfair gain) apply and a transaction can be nullified if it is sold for more or less than a sixth of its value (Hilchot Mechirah 12:4). These principles do not apply, however, with regard to consecrated property.


I.e., to carefully evaluate its worth. See Halachah 11.


While it is consecrated, both of these activities are forbidden according to Rabbinic Law (Hilchot Meilah 1:12).


With regard to transactions between private individuals, by contrast, as long as the difference between the article's value and the price for which it is sold is less than a sixth, the transaction is allowed to stand (Hilchot Mechirah 12:3).


See Halachah 8.


We are speaking about a cow consecrated for the sake of improvements to the Temple. If it were consecrated for sacrifice on the altar, even after its holiness were transferred to another animal, it would remain consecrated itself (Radbaz).


See Halachah 8.


As mentioned above, the fifth is one fifth of the new total including the fifth and the amount for which the article is redeemed. Since he stated the value of the article he was giving as ten selaim, the value of the fifth is calculated accordingly even though he is paying more than would actually have been required.


Halachah 4.


Performing meshichah, an act that would complete the kinyan (formal act of acquisition) of the article.


100 zuz.


As mentioned in the notes to Halachah 1, the Rambam is not referring to an explicit verse in the Torah, but rather our Sages' restatement of the relevant verses in Kiddushin 28b.


And not when it enters his possession. Hence, he must pay the value at the time he redeems it.


See Hilchot Mechirah 9:2. As mentioned above, when an ordinary person completes meshichah, the transaction is completed and he must pay its price then. When it lost value, it was already in his possession.


One might ask: Why must he actually pay the money? Seemingly the very fact that he pledged to redeem it from the Temple treasury at 200 should be sufficient to make him liable in accordance with the principle (Kiddushin 28b, et al): "A person's statements to the Temple treasury are equivalent to an ordinary person drawing the article into his possession." The Radbaz explains that in this instance, that principle is not applied, because it is possible to say that the pledge was made in error. He did not expect that the article would depreciate in value. Hence, unless he paid the money, he is not liable for the higher sum.


And the depreciation is considered to have taken place in his possession as above.


Since the transaction is not completed until the purchaser draws it into his possession, with regard to ordinary transactions, the purchaser would have the right to nullify the transaction. Nevertheless, were he to do so, he is liable to have the admonition mi shepara administered to him by the court (Hilchot Mechirah 7:1). As the Rambam continues to explain, it is not appropriate to have this admonition administered to the Temple treasurers.


With regard to this admonition, ibid.:2 states: "He is cursed in court and told: 'May He who exacted retribution from the generation of the Flood, the generation of the Dispersion, the inhabitants of Sodom and Amorah, and the Egyptians who drowned in the sea, exact retribution from a person who does not keep his word.'


I.e., were the person to sell all his possessions to a private person, his wife and his creditors would be able to collect their due from the landed property in his domain. Since the property becomes the possession of the Temple treasury, those obligations temporarily need not be met.

The Ra'avad differs with the Rambam and maintains that the liens are in effect even when the property is in the possession of the Temple treasury. Our Sages' statement (Ketubot 59b) that consecration absolves prior liens applies only with regard to the consecration of articles that themselves will be used for the Temple or its sacrifices, not articles to be sold and the proceeds used.

One of the practical differences between the Rambam's position and that of the Ra'avad is whether a person will be liable for me'ilah, misappropriating consecrating property, for benefiting from this property. In Hilchot Malveh ViLoveh 18:7, the Rambam states similar ideas as in this halachah. In his gloss to that halachah, the Maggid Mishneh takes issue with the Rambam. Although, here, in his Kessef Mishneh, Rav Yosef Caro defends the Rambam's position in his Shulchan Aruch (Choshen Mishpat 117:7), it appears that he accepts the other view. The Tur and the Rama explicitly state that the Ra'avad's position should be followed.


I.e., the property is redeemed with the awareness that it is under lien and that lien will ultimately be collected. Its price is calculated accordingly, as stated in Halachah 16.


She had the right to collect the money due her by virtue of her ketubah from this property, but she agreed not to press her claim against this individual.


For the field remains on lien to her. The promise she gave the first purchaser is not binding with regard to the second.

The Ra'avad differs with the Rambam on this point as well, maintaining that the woman does not have the right to expropriate the property from the second purchaser. For by purchasing the field, he purchased every right that the first purchaser had. Moreover, if forced to pay the woman, he could seek reimbursement from the first purchaser or nullify the sale. In his gloss to Hilchot Malveh ViLoveh 19:8, the Maggid Mishneh supports the Ra'avad's view. The Kessef Mishneh, however, defends the Rambam's position.


Since it is on lien, obviously, no one will desire to pay its actual worth.


As stated in Hilchot Ishut 16:10,20 and Hilchot Malveh ViLoveh 22:10, we do not expropriate the field for the wife or the creditor until he or she takes an oath while holding a sacred object that the debt was not collected, waived, or sold to another person.


Chapter 3, Halachah 20; Chapter 4, Halachah 27.


Our translation is based on manuscripts and early printings of the Mishneh Torah. The standard printed text follows a slightly different version.


Although the initial preference is that consecrated property be redeemed for its full value (Halachah 8), that is not feasible in the present instance. Instead, the person is allowed to pay any sum he desires, for his profit may be small after paying the debt. Indeed, as the Rambam continues, he may even suffer a loss.


And the lien on the field is ignored.


This vow must be taken conditional to the consent of people at large. In this way, it can never be nullified. Note a parallel in Hilchot Bi'at HaMikdash 6:9.


I.e., he would remarry her and retake possession of a portion of his property in this way. See Hilchot Ishut 17:9-10. Arachin 23a emphasizes that we are speaking about a healthy man. If a person on his death bed divorces his wife so that she will not have to undergo yibbum, he is not required to take such an oath, for we do not suspect that a person on his death bed will try to deceive the Temple treasury. See Halachah 19.


For a consecration made in error can be nullified, as stated in Chapter 6, Halachah 34.


If, however, he made such statements before consecrating his property, his word is accepted (Radbaz).

See the Siftei Cohen (Choshen Mishpat 255:5) who elaborates on the concept that even if he makes this statement directly after consecrating his property, it is not accepted. As support, he cites Hilchot Ma'aseh HaKorbanot 15:1 where the Rambam writes that after a person consecrates an animal, even if he seeks to retract his consecration immediately, he cannot. The Radbaz (see his gloss to the following halachah) supports this view. The Kessef Mishneh, however, maintains that a healthy person can also retract his statement directly after making it.


I.e., the person claims to be holding it as an entrusted article.


And prevent a certain portion of his property from having to be redeemed.


For as stated in Halachah 14, consecration lifts liens on property.


See Halachah 16.


At such a time, when he will not derive any worldly benefit from sinning and is conscious of the retribution he will receive in the world to come, he will certainly not seek to deceive the Temple treasury.


I.e., his acknowledgement of the debt. If, however, the creditor does not have a promissory note whose authenticity has been verified, he cannot collect the debt, even though the debtor acknowledged it on his deathbed. The rationale is that (as stated in Hilchot To'ain ViNitan 6:7), a person is wont to state that he owes money even if he in fact does not so that his sons do not think of themselves as rich. His estate is not bound by these statements unless, as stated above, he explicitly instructed that the debt be paid or the creditor has a promissory note that has been verified. Even though in this instance, the money will be going to the Temple treasury and not to his sons, a similar rationale can still be applied. We say that he is admitting the debt so that people will not think of him as a person who hoarded money throughout his life (Sefer Meirat Einayim 255:12).


The Ra'avad objects to the Rambam's decision, stating that the word of a person on his deathbed is accepted even he makes his statements after consecrating the article. For at the time he consecrates an article, the statements of a healthy person are also accepted.

In view of this objection, the Radbaz explains that there are three different time frameworks:

a) before the consecration is made - in which instance the statements of both a healthy man and one on his deathbed are accepted;

b) immediately after (toch k'dei dibbur) the consecration is made - in which instance the statements of a healthy man are not accepted and those of one on his deathbed are;

c) some time after the consecration is made - in which instance neither the statements of a healthy man nor those of one on his deathbed are accepted.

The Kessef Mishneh follows the same basic thrust in interpreting the Rambam, but differs regarding one point, maintaining that a healthy person can also retract his statement directly after making it. The difference between a healthy person and one on his deathbed is that when a person is on his deathbed, his word is accepted as long as he is still speaking of the deposition of his property even though it is not directly after he consecrated it.


That he has not received payment for the debt.


As stated, in Halachot 14, 16. The Ra'avad adds that if we are speaking about an entrusted article which the dying man acknowledged having received for safekeeping, it is returned to its owner without being redeemed. The Radbaz states that the Rambam would not necessarily differ on this point.


Through the testimony of witnesses or a contract that has been verified.

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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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