Get the best of Chabad.org content every week!
Find answers to fascinating Jewish questions, enjoy holiday tips and guides, read real-life stories and more!
ב"ה

Rambam - 1 Chapter a Day

Shechitah - Chapter 10

Show content in:

Shechitah - Chapter 10

1

What is meant by the term sheburah?1 That the majority of [an animal's] ribs are broken. An animal has eleven ribs2 on either side of its body. If six were broken on one side and six on the other, or eleven were broken on one side and one on the other, [the animal] is trefe. [This applies] provided it is the half that faces the backbone3 and not the half that faces the chest.

א

שְבוּרָה כֵּיצַד הוּא שֶׁנִּשְׁתַּבְּרוּ רֹב צַלְעוֹתֶיהָ. וְצַלְעוֹת הַבְּהֵמָה הֵן אַחַת עֶשְׂרֵה מִיכָּן וְאַחַת עֶשְׂרֵה מִיכָּן. נִשְׁתַּבְּרוּ שֵׁשׁ מִיכָּן וְשֵׁשׁ מִכָּאן אוֹ אַחַת עֶשְׂרֵה מִכָּאן וְאַחַת מִכָּאן טְרֵפָה. וְהוּא שֶׁנִּשְׁבְּרוּ מֵחֶצְיָן שֶׁל מוּל הַשְּׂדֵרָה:

2

When six [ribs] were broken on either side, [the animal] is trefe [only] when they are large ribs that have marrow. If not, even though they represent the majority of the animal's ribs and they were broken facing the backbone, [the animal] is permitted.

Similarly, if the majority of the ribs were uprooted, [the animal] is trefe. [Moreover,] if even one rib is uprooted together with half of the vertebra in which it is lodged, it is trefe. Similarly, if even one vertebra was uprooted from the backbone, it is trefe, even if was a vertebra that is below the flanks where there are no ribs.

ב

נִשְׁבְּרוּ שֵׁשׁ מִכָּאן וְשֵׁשׁ מִכָּאן אִם הָיוּ צְלָעוֹת גְּדוֹלוֹת שֶׁיֵּשׁ בָּהֶן מֹחַ טְרֵפָה. וְאִם לָאו אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהֵן רֹב וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁנִּשְׁבְּרוּ כְּלַפֵּי הַשִּׁדְרָה מֻתֶּרֶת. וְכֵן אִם נֶעֶקְרוּ רֹב צַלְעוֹתֶיהָ טְרֵפָה. וְאִם נֶעֶקְרָה אֲפִלּוּ צֶלַע אַחַת וַחֲצִי חֻלְיָתָהּ עִמָּהּ שֶׁהַצֶּלַע תְּקוּעָה בָּהּ הֲרֵי זוֹ טְרֵפָה. וְכֵן אִם נֶעֶקְרָה מִן הַשִּׁדְרָה חֻלְיָא אַחַת אֲפִלּוּ הָיְתָה מִן הַחֻלְיוֹת שֶׁלְּמַטָּה מִן הַכְּסָלִים שֶׁאֵין בָּהֶן צְלָעוֹת הֲרֵי זוֹ טְרֵפָה:

3

[The following rules apply when] the thigh of an animal has slipped from its place and has left its socket. If its sinews, i.e., the peg-like projections from the bones of the socket which extend toward the bone that enters the socket4 and holds it have degenerated, [the animal] is trefe.5 If they have not degenerated, it is permitted.6

ג

בְּהֵמָה שֶׁנִּשְׁמַט הַיָּרֵךְ שֶׁלָּהּ מֵעִקָּרוֹ וְיָצָא מִן הַכַּף שֶׁלּוֹ אִם נִתְאַכְּלוּ נִיבָיו וְהֵן הַיְתֵדוֹת שֶׁבְּעֶצֶם הַכַּף שֶׁיּוֹצֵאת עַל הָעֶצֶם הַזָּכָר וְאוֹחֶזֶת אוֹתוֹ הֲרֵי זוֹ טְרֵפָה. וְאִם לֹא נִתְאַכְּלוּ מֻתֶּרֶת:

4

Similarly, with regard to a fowl, if its hip is dislocated,7 it is trefe. If its wing is dislocated from its socket, we fear that it perforated the lung.8 Therefore we conduct an examination.9 Afterwards, it may be eaten. When the foreleg of an animal is dislocated from its socket, it is permitted. We do not harbor any suspicions.10

ד

וְכֵן בָּעוֹף אִם נִשְׁמַט יְרֵכוֹ טְרֵפָה. נִשְׁמַט כְּנָפוֹ מֵעִקָּרוֹ חוֹשְׁשִׁין שֶׁמָּא נִקְּבָה הָרֵאָה שֶׁלּוֹ וּלְפִיכָךְ בּוֹדְקִין אוֹתָהּ וְאַחַר כָּךְ יֵאָכֵל. וּבְהֵמָה שֶׁנִּשְׁמְטָה יָדָהּ מֵעִקָּרָהּ מֻתֶּרֶת וְאֵין חוֹשְׁשִׁין לָהּ:

5

When a portion of the skull of a domesticated animal or wild beast the size of a sela11 was removed, [the animal] is trefe even though the membrane was not perforated. If a skull was perforated by a number of small holes that [detract from the skull's] substance, they are all added together [to see if their combined size equals] a sela.

ה

גֻּלְגּלֶת בְּהֵמָה אוֹ חַיָּה שֶׁנִּטַּל מִמֶּנָּה כְּסֶלַע אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא נִקַּב הַקְּרוּם טְרֵפָה. וְאִם נִקְּבוּ נְקָבִים שֶׁיֵּשׁ בָּהֶן חֶסְרוֹן כֻּלָּן מִצְטָרְפִין לִכְסֶלַע:

6

Similarly, if the majority of the height12 and the majority of the circumference of a skull was crushed, [the animal] is trefe, even though its membrane is intact and it is not lacking any substance. If the majority of its height was crushed, but the majority of its circumference was intact or the majority of its circumference was crushed, but the majority of its height was intact, there is an unresolved doubt whether [the animal] is trefe or not.13 It appears to me that we forbid it.14

ו

וְכֵן גֻּלְגּלֶת שֶׁנֶּחְבַּס רֹב גָּבְהָהּ וְרֹב הֶקֵּפָהּ טְרֵפָה. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהַקְּרוּם שָׁלֵם וְלֹא חָסֵר מִמֶּנָּה כְּלוּם. נֶחְבַּס רֹב גָּבְהָהּ וַהֲרֵי רֹב הֶקֵּפָהּ קַיָּם אוֹ שֶׁנֶּחְבַּס רֹב הֶקֵּפָהּ וַהֲרֵי רֹב גָּבְהָהּ קַיָּם הֲרֵי זוֹ סְפֵק טְרֵפָה. וְיֵרָאֶה לִי שֶׁאוֹסְרִין אוֹתָהּ:

7

When the bones of the skull of a water fowl, e.g., a goose, is perforated,15 [the fowl] is trefe even though the membrane has not been perforated. [The rationale is that] the membrane is soft.16

[The following procedure should be adhered to when] a weasel struck17 a land fowl on the head or it was struck by a stone or a piece of wood. One places his hand next to the hole and applies pressure or he inserts his hand into the fowl's mouth and applies pressure upward. If [the fowl's] brain emerged from the hole, it can be concluded that the membrane has been perforated and it is trefe. If not, it is permitted.18

ז

עוֹף שֶׁל מַיִם כְּגוֹן אֲוָזִים אִם נִקַּב עֶצֶם גֻּלְגָּלְתּוֹ אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא נִקַּב קְרוּם שֶׁל מֹחַ טְרֵפָה מִפְּנֵי שֶׁקְּרוּמוֹ רַךְ. עוֹף הַיַּבָּשָׁה שֶׁהִכַּתּוּ חֻלְדָּה עַל רֹאשׁוֹ אוֹ שֶׁנִּגַּף בְּאֶבֶן אוֹ בְּעֵץ מַנִּיחַ יָדוֹ בְּצַד הַנֶּקֶב וְנוֹעֵץ אוֹ מַכְנִיס יָדוֹ לְתוֹךְ פִּיו וְדוֹחֵק לְמַעְלָה. אִם יָצָא הַמֹּחַ מִן הַנֶּקֶב בְּיָדוּעַ שֶׁנִּקַּב הַקְּרוּם וּטְרֵפָה. וְאִם לָאו מֻתָּר:

8

When an animal's blood pressure causes it to choke,19 it was affected by a black gall bladder secretion20 or a white gall bladder secretion,21 it ate a poison which kills animals, or drank fowl water, it is permitted.22 If it ate a poison that could kill a human or it was bitten by a snake or the like, it is permitted with regard to the laws of trefe, but it is forbidden because of the mortal danger [partaking of it could cause].23

ח

בְּהֵמָה שֶׁאָחֲזָהּ דָּם אוֹ שֶׁהָיְתָה מְעֻשֶּׁנֶת אוֹ מְצֻנֶּנֶת אוֹ שֶׁאָכְלָה סַם שֶׁהוֹרֵג הַבְּהֵמָה אוֹ שָׁתְתָה מַיִם הָרָעִים הֲרֵי זוֹ מֻתֶּרֶת. אָכְלָה סַם שֶׁהוֹרֵג אֶת הָאָדָם אוֹ שֶׁנְּשָׁכָהּ נָחָשׁ וְכַיּוֹצֵא בּוֹ מֻתֶּרֶת מִשּׁוּם טְרֵפָה וַאֲסוּרָה מִפְּנֵי סַכָּנַת נְפָשׁוֹת:

9

Thus the total number of conditions that cause a domesticated animal or a wild beast to be deemed trefe when singled out are seventy. They are: 1) an animal that has been attacked;24

2) the perforation of the entrance to the gullet;25

3) the perforation of the membrane of the brain;26

4) the degeneration of the brain itself;27

5) the perforation of the heart itself to its cavities;28

6) the perforation of the arteries leading from the heart;29

7) the perforation of the gall-bladder;30

8) the perforation of the arteries of the liver;31

9) the perforation of the maw;32

10) the perforation of the stomach;33

11) the perforation of the abdomen;34

12) the perforation of the gut;35

13) the perforation of the digestive organs;36

14) the digestive organs protruded outside the animal's body and became overturned;37

15) the perforation of the thick portion of the spleen;38

16) a lack of a gall-bladder;39

17) being born with two gall-bladders;40

18) a lack of a maw;

19) being born with two maws;

20) a lack of a stomach;

21) being born with two stomachs;

22) a lack of an abdomen

23) being born with abdomens;

24) a lack of a gut;

25) being born with two guts;

26) a lack of one of the digestive organs;

27) being born with an extra digestive organ;

28) the perforation of the lung;41

29) the perforation of the windpipe in a place where it is not fit for ritual slaughter;42

30) the perforation of the bronchioles of the lungs, even if it is covered by another one;43

31) a portion of the lungs has become closed;44

32) the degeneration of one of the bronchioles of the lungs;45

33) the discovery of putrid fluid in the lungs;46

34) the discovery of putrid liquid in the lungs;47

35) the discovery of murky liquid in [the lungs] even if it has not become putrid;48

36)the degeneration of the lung;49

37) a change in the lung's appearance;50

38) the reversal of the gullet's appearance;51

39) a lack of one of the required number of lobes of the lung;52

40) a change in the order of the lobes;53

41) the addition of a lobe on the back [of the lung];54

42) the attachment of one lobe to another out of the ordinary order;55

43) the discovery of a lung without division into lobes:56

44) the lack of a portion of the lung;57

45) a portion of the body of the lung is dried out;58

46) the discovery of the lung in an inflated state;59

47) a lung became shriveled because of fear of humans;60

48) the lack of a hindleg; whether from birth or because it was cut off;61

49) the possession of an extra leg;62

50) the removal of the junction of the sinews;63

51) the removal of the liver;64

52) the removal of the upper jaw-bone;65

53) a kidney that became extremely undersized;66

54) a kidney that has become afflicted;67

55) the discovery of fluid in the kidney;68

56) the discovery of murky liquid in the kidney, even if it is not putrid;69

57) the discovery of putrid liquid in the kidney;70

58) the severance of the spinal cord;71

59) the softening and degeneration of the spinal cord;72

60) the ripping open of the majority of the flesh that covers the belly;73

61) the removal of [an animal's] skin;74

62) the crushing of [an animal's] organs due to a fall;75

63) the slippage of the gullet and windpipe;76

64) the breaking of the majority of [the animal's] ribs;77

65) the uprooting of the majority of the ribs;78

66) the uprooting of one rib together with its vertebra;79

67) the uprooting of one vertebra; 80

68) the slippage of the thigh from its socket;81

69) the lack of a portion of the skull the size of a sela;82

70) the crushing and smashing of the majority of the skull;83

ט

נִמְצְאוּ כָּל הַטְּרֵפוֹת הַמְּנוּיוֹת כְּשֶׁיִּפָּרְטוּ וְאֶפְשָׁר שֶׁיִּמָּצְאוּ בִּבְהֵמָה וְחַיָּה שִׁבְעִים. וְאֵלּוּ הֵן עַל הַסֵּדֶר שֶׁנִּתְבָּאֲרוּ בְּחִבּוּר זֶה. א) דְּרוּסָה. ב) נִקַּב תַּרְבַּץ הַוֵּשֶׁט. ג) נִקַּב קְרוּם שֶׁל מֹחַ. ד) נִתְמַסְמֵס הַמֹּחַ עַצְמוֹ. ה) נִקַּב הַלֵּב עַצְמוֹ לְבֵית חֲלָלוֹ. ו) נִקַּב קְנֵה הַלֵּב. ז) נִקְּבָה הַמָּרָה. ח) נִקְּבוּ קְנֵי הַכָּבֵד. ט) נִקְּבָה הַקֵּבָה. י) נִקַּב הַכֶּרֶס. יא) נִקַּב הֶמְסֵס. יב) נִקַּב בֵּית הַכּוֹסוֹת. יג) נִקְּבוּ מֵעֶיהָ. יד) יָצְאוּ הַמֵּעַיִם לַחוּץ וְנֶהֶפְכוּ. טו) נִקַּב הַטְּחוֹל בְּעָבְיוֹ. טז) חֲסֵרָה הַמָּרָה. יז) נִמְצְאוּ שְׁתֵּי מְרָרוֹת. יח) חֲסֵרָה הַקֵּבָה. יט) נִמְצְאוּ שְׁתֵּי קֵבוֹת. כ) חָסֵר הַכֶּרֶס. כא) נִמְצְאוּ שְׁנֵי כְּרֵסִים. כב) חָסֵר הֶמְסֵס. כג) נִמְצְאוּ שְׁנֵי מְסָסִים. כד) חָסֵר בֵּית הַכּוֹסוֹת. כה) נִמְצְאוּ שְׁנֵי בָּתֵּי הַכּוֹסוֹת. כו) חָסֵר אֶחָד מִן הַמֵּעַיִם. כז) נִמְצְאוּ שְׁנֵי מֵעַיִם. כח) נִקְּבָה הָרֵאָה. כט) נִקַּב הַקָּנֶה לְמַטָּה בְּמָקוֹם שֶׁאֵינוֹ רָאוּי לִשְׁחִיטָה. ל) נִקַּב סִמְפּוֹן מִסִּמְפּוֹנֵי רֵאָה אֲפִלּוּ לַחֲבֵרוֹ. לא) נֶאֱטַם מָקוֹם מִן הָרֵאָה. לב) נִמֹּק סִמְפּוֹן מִסִּמְפּוֹנֵי הָרֵאָה. לג) נִמְצְאָה לֵחָה סְרוּחָה בָּרֵאָה. לד) נִמְצְאוּ בָּהּ מַיִם סְרוּחִים. לה) נִמְצְאוּ בָּהּ מַיִם עֲכוּרִין אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא הִסְרִיחוּ. לו) נִתְמַסְמְסָה הָרֵאָה. לז) נִשְׁתַּנּוּ מַרְאֶיהָ. לח) נֶהֱפַךְ הַוֵּשֶׁט בְּמַרְאָיו. לט) חֲסֵרָה הָרֵאָה מִמִּנְיַן הָאֻנּוֹת. מ) נִתְחַלְּפוּ הָאֻנּוֹת. מא) הוֹתִירוּ הָאֻנּוֹת מִגַּבָּהּ. מב) נִסְרְכָה אֻנָּה לְאֻנָּה שֶׁלֹּא כְּסִדְרָן. מג) נִמְצְאָה הָרֵאָה בְּלֹא חִתּוּךְ אָזְנַיִם. מד) חָסֵר מִקְצָת הָרֵאָה. מה) יָבֵשׁ מִקְצָת גּוּפָהּ. מו) נִמְצְאָה הָרֵאָה נְפוּחָה וְעוֹמֶדֶת. מז) צָמְקָה הָרֵאָה מִפַּחַד אָדָם. מח) חָסֵר הָרֶגֶל בֵּין מִתְּחִלַּת בְּרִיָּתוֹ בֵּין שֶׁנֶּחְתַּךְ. מט) אוֹ שֶׁהָיְתָה יְתֵרָה רֶגֶל. נ) נִטְּלָה צֹמֶת הַגִּידִים. נא) נִטְּלָה הַכָּבֵד. נב) נִטַּל לֶחִי הָעֶלְיוֹן. נג) כּוּלְיָא שֶׁהִקְטִינָה בְּיוֹתֵר. נד) כּוּלְיָא שֶׁלָּקְתָה. נה) כּוּלְיָא שֶׁנִּמְצֵאת בָּהּ לֵחָה. נו) כּוּלְיָא שֶׁנִּמְצְאוּ בָּהּ מַיִם עֲכוּרִין אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵינָן סְרוּחִין. נז) כּוּלְיָא שֶׁנִּמְצְאוּ בָּהּ מַיִם סְרוּחִין. נח) נִפְסַק חוּט הַשִּׁדְרָה. נט) נִמְרַךְ מֹחַ חוּט הַשִּׁדְרָה וְנִתְמַסְמֵס. ס) נִקְרַע רֹב הַבָּשָׂר הַחוֹפֶה אֶת הַכֶּרֶס. סא) נִגְלַד הָעוֹר שֶׁעָלֶיהָ. סב) נִתְרַסְּקוּ אֵיבָרֶיהָ מִנְּפִילָה. סג) נִדַּלְדְּלוּ הַסִּימָנִין. סד) נִשְׁתַּבְּרוּ רֹב צַלְעוֹתֶיהָ. סה) נֶעֶקְרוּ רֹב צַלְעוֹתֶיהָ. סו) נֶעֶקְרָה צֶלַע אַחַת בְּחֻלְיָתָהּ. סז) נֶעֶקְרָה חֻלְיָה אַחַת. סח) נִשְׁמַט הַיָּרֵךְ מֵעִקָּרוֹ. סט) חֲסֵרָה הַגֻּלְגּלֶת כְּסֶלַע. ע) נֶחְבַּס רֹב הַגֻּלְגּלֶת וְנִתְרוֹצֵץ:

10

These seventy conditions of infirmity which cause a domesticated animal or a wild beast to be forbidden as a trefe were each explained together with all the particular laws. All of the possible parallels that can be found with regard to a fowl in the organs that are common to an animal and a fowl are the same with regard to an animal and a fowl. The only exceptions are the conditions that render an animal trefe in the kidneys, the spleen, and the lobes of the lung. For a fowl does not have a division of lobes like an animal does. If there is such a division, there is no fixed number. The spleen of a fowl is round like a grape and is not the same shape as that of an animal.84 [The conditions of infirmity] concerning the kidneys and the spleen [that render] an animal trefe were not mentioned in order to find parallels with regard to a fowl. Therefore no set measure was given concerning a fowl with regard to a kidney whose size was reduced. Similar concepts apply in other analogous situations.85

י

אֵלּוּ הַשִּׁבְעִים חֳלָיִים שֶׁאוֹסְרִין אֶת הַבְּהֵמָה וְאֶת הַחַיָּה מִשּׁוּם טְרֵפָה כְּבָר נִתְבָּאֵר כָּל אֶחָד מֵהֶן וּמִשְׁפָּטָיו. וְכָל שֶׁאֶפְשָׁר מֵהֶן שֶׁיִּמָּצֵא בָּעוֹף בָּאֵיבָרִין הַמְּצוּיִין לָעוֹף וְלַבְּהֵמָה דִּינוֹ בִּבְהֵמָה וּבְעוֹף אֶחָד הוּא. חוּץ מִטְּרֵפוֹת שֶׁבְּכוּלְיָא וְשֶׁבַּטְּחוֹל וְשֶׁבְּאֻנּוֹת הָרֵאָה. מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהָעוֹף אֵין לוֹ חִתּוּךְ אֻנּוֹת כִּבְהֵמָה. וְאִם יִמָּצֵא אֵין לוֹ מִנְיָן יָדוּעַ. וּטְחוֹל הָעוֹף עָגל כְּמוֹ עֵנָב וְאֵינוֹ כִּטְחוֹל בְּהֵמָה. וּטְרֵפוֹת שֶׁבַּכּוּלְיָא וְשֶׁבַּטְּחוֹל לֹא מָנוּ אוֹתָן בִּבְהֵמָה כְּדֵי שֶׁיִּהְיֶה כְּנֶגְדָּן בָּעוֹף וּלְפִיכָךְ לֹא נָתְנוּ לְכוּלְיָא שֶׁהִקְטִינָה שִׁעוּר בָּעוֹף. וְכֵן כָּל כַּיּוֹצֵא בָּזֶה:

11

There are two conditions that render a fowl trefe in addition to those that render an animal [trefe] despite the fact that [an animal] also possesses these organs. They are: a) a fowl whose digestive organs have changed color because of [exposure to] fire;86

b) a water fowl whose skull bone has been perforated.87

יא

וּשְׁתֵּי טְרֵפוֹת יֵשׁ בָּעוֹף יֶתֶר עַל הַבְּהֵמָה וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁיֵּשׁ לָהּ אוֹתָן הָאֵיבָרִים. וְאֵלּוּ הֵן. עוֹף שֶׁנִּשְׁתַּנּוּ מַרְאֵה בְּנֵי מֵעָיו מֵחֲמַת הָאוּר. וְעוֹף הַמַּיִם שֶׁנִּקַּב עֶצֶם רֹאשׁוֹ:

12

One should not add to these conditions that render an animal trefe at all.88 For any condition that occurs with regard to a domesticated animal, wild beast, or fowl aside from those listed by the Sages of the early generations and which were agreed upon by the courts of Israel can possibly live. [This applies] even if it is known to us according to medical wisdom that ultimately it will not live.89

יב

וְאֵין לְהוֹסִיף עַל טְרֵפוֹת אֵלּוּ כְּלָל. שֶׁכָּל שֶׁאֵרַע לִבְהֵמָה אוֹ לְחַיָּה אוֹ לְעוֹף חוּץ מֵאֵלּוּ שֶׁמָּנוּ חַכְמֵי דּוֹרוֹת הָרִאשׁוֹנִים וְהִסְכִּימוּ עֲלֵיהֶן בְּבָתֵּי דִּינֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אֶפְשָׁר שֶׁתִּחְיֶה. וַאֲפִלּוּ נוֹדַע לָנוּ מִדֶּרֶךְ הָרְפוּאָה שֶׁאֵין סוֹפָהּ לִחְיוֹת:

13

Similarly, with regard to those [conditions] which [our Sages] listed as [causing an animal to be] deemed trefe even though it appears from the medical knowledge we possess that some of them will not kill and it is possible for the animal to live - we follow only what the Torah says,90 as [Deuteronomy 17:11] states: "According to the Torah in which they will instruct you."91

יג

וְכֵן אֵלּוּ שֶׁמָּנוּ וְאָמְרוּ שֶׁהֵן טְרֵפָה אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁיֵּרָאֶה בְּדַרְכֵי הָרְפוּאָה שֶׁבְּיָדֵינוּ שֶׁמִּקְצָתָן אֵינָן מְמִיתִין וְאֶפְשָׁר שֶׁתִּחְיֶה מֵהֶן אֵין לְךָ אֶלָּא מַה שֶּׁמָּנוּ חֲכָמִים שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים יז יא) "עַל פִּי הַתּוֹרָה אֲשֶׁר יוֹרוּךָ":

14

Whenever a butcher is knowledgeable about these [conditions that cause an animal to be deemed] trefe and he has established a reputation for observance, he may slaughter [animals], inspect them himself, and sell them without any suspicion. [The rationale is the word of] one witness is accepted with regard to the Torah's prohibition whether his testimony will lead to benefit for him or not.

We already explained92 that we do not purchase meat from a butcher who slaughters and inspects [the animal] himself in the Diaspora or [even] in Eretz Yisrael in the present age unless he established a reputation as an expert. If he sold an animal that was trefe, we place him under a ban of ostracism and remove him from his position.93 He cannot reestablish his credibility until he goes to a place where his identity is not recognized and he returns a lost article that is very valuable or [slaughters an animal] for himself and declares it trefe even though it involves a significant loss.

יד

כָּל טַבָּח שֶׁהוּא יוֹדֵעַ הַטְּרֵפוֹת הָאֵלּוּ וַהֲרֵי הוּא בְּחֶזְקַת כַּשְׁרוּת מֻתָּר לוֹ לִשְׁחֹט וְלִבְדֹּק לְעַצְמוֹ וְלִמְכֹּר וְאֵין בָּזֶה חֲשָׁשׁ. שֶׁעֵד אֶחָד נֶאֱמָן בְּאִסּוּרִין בֵּין יֵשׁ לוֹ הֲנָיָה בְּעֵדוּתוֹ בֵּין אֵין לוֹ הֲנָיָה בְּעֵדוּתוֹ. וּכְבָר בֵּאַרְנוּ שֶׁאֵין לוֹקְחִין בָּשָׂר מִטַּבָּח שֶׁשּׁוֹחֵט וּבוֹדֵק לְעַצְמוֹ בְּחוּצָה לָאָרֶץ אוֹ בְּאֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל בַּזְּמַן הַזֶּה. אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן הָיָה מֻמְחֶה. וְאִם יָצָאת טְרֵפָה מִתַּחַת יָדוֹ מְנַדִּין אוֹתוֹ וּמַעֲבִירִין אוֹתוֹ וְאֵינוֹ חוֹזֵר לְכַשְׁרוּתוֹ עַד שֶׁיֵּלֵךְ לְמָקוֹם שֶׁאֵין מַכִּירִים אוֹתוֹ וְיַחֲזִיר אֲבֵדָה בְּדָבָר חָשׁוּב אוֹ יוֹצִיא טְרֵפָה לְעַצְמוֹ בְּדָבָר חָשׁוּב:

Footnotes
1.

Sheburah is also one of the eight categories of trefot mentioned in Chapter 5, Halachah 2. The term literally means "broken."

2.

An animal also has several smaller ribs, but they're being broken does not impair the animal's functioning.

3.

I.e., the portion close to the backbone. If the ribs are broken there, the animal's functioning can be impaired. If they are broken closer to the chest, the impairment will be less severe.

4.

Speaking in analogy, the Rambam refers to this as "the male" bone.

5.

The Ra'avad states that if the thigh is dislocated from its upper socket, the animal is trefe even if the sinews have not degenerated. According to the Ra'avad, the law stated by the Rambam applies when the thigh is dislocated from its lower socket. The Shulchan Aruch (Yoreh De'ah 55:2) follows the Rambam's perspective. The Rama mentions that there are opinions that maintain that in the present age, we are not knowledgeable with regard to the determination of whether the sinews have degenerated and we should rule an animal trefe whenever its thigh has dislocated. He advises following these views whenever there is not a significant loss involved.

6.

Similarly, even if they have degenerated, but the bone has not slipped out of its socket, the animal is permitted. As long as the bone is in its socket, we assume that the sinews will regenerate [Maggid Mishneh; Rama (Yoreh De'ah 55:2)].

7.

And the sinews have degenerated (Kessef Mishneh).

8.

I.e., the dislocation of the wing is not sufficient to render the fowl trefe in its own right. Nevertheless, we fear that perhaps it perforated the lung and hence require an examination.

9.

And inflate the lung [Shulchan Aruch (Yoreh De'ah 53:3)].

10.

For the shoulder socket is substantial and will prevent the arm bone from perforating the lung (Kessef Mishneh). The Rama (Yoreh De'ah 52:1) quotes views that rule that an animal is trefe if its arm is broken close to its body and there are signs of internal bleeding.

11.

As mentioned above, a sela is one third of a handbreadth wide. Thus its diameter is 2.6 cm according to Shiurei Torah and 3.2 cm according to Chazon Ish.

12.

I.e., the majority of the portion of the skull from the eyes up (Rashi, Chullin 52b).

13.

This question is left unresolved by Chullin, loc. cit.

14.

The Kessef Mishneh clarifies why it is necessary for the Rambam to make this statement, seemingly, it is obvious. Whenever there is an unresolved question concerning a Torah prohibition, we rule stringently. He explains that it is possible to interpret the Talmud's question is implying that in one circumstance, when the majority of the skull's height alone is crushed or the majority of its circumference alone is crushed, the animal is kosher, but we are unsure of which one. Therefore the Rambam must clarify that because of the doubt, both situations are forbidden.

15.

Even the smallest perforation can render the fowl trefe (Kessef Mishneh).

16.

If it is not protected by the skull, it will most likely be perforated in the near future (Rashi, Chullin 56a).

17.

The Kessef Mishneh explains that we are speaking about a situation where the weasel bit the fowl on the skull. If it struck it with its paws, the fowl is trefe, because it is a derusah, as stated in Chapter 5, Halachah 6.

18.

According to the Rambam, both of these procedures are equally effective (Kessef Mishneh). The Rama (Yoreh De'ah 30:2) writes that in the present age, we are not knowledgeable with regard to this process of examination and should rule that a fowl is trefe whenever its skull is perforated.

19.

Our translation is based on Rav Kapach's translation of the Rambam's Commentary to the Mishnah (Chullin 3:5).

20.

Here also our translation follows the above source. Rav Kapach draws support for his interpretation from Psalms 74:1.

21.

Which, when not released according to the proper measure causes the animal to become very heavy and to have difficulty moving (ibid.). It must be emphasized that other commentaries offer different interpretations of all three of these conditions.

22.

In this context, the commentaries have cited Hilchot Ma'achalot Assurot 4:11: "When an animal is sick because it is weakened and is on the verge of death, it is permitted, because it did not suffer a wound in any one of the limbs and organs that will cause it to die. For the Torah forbade only those situations resembling an animal mortally wounded by a preying wild beast. In that situation, the animal wounded it with a blow that caused it to die."

23.

For the poison or the venom could kill the person who partakes of the animal's meat. See Hilchot Rotzeach UShemirat Nefesh 12:1. 24. The Kessef Mishneh explains the basis for the Rambam's reckoning: Whenever a condition that causes an animal to be deemed trefe is mentioned explicitly by the Talmud, it is considered as being in a separate category even though it is a derivative of another category. For example, the degeneration of the bronchioles is considered a separate category even though it is a derivative of the category of the perforation of the bronchioles.

24.

See Chapter 5, Halachah 4 ff.

25.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 2.

26.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 3.

27.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 4.

28.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 5.

29.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 4.

30.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 6.

31.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 8.

32.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 10.

33.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 11.

34.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 10.

35.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 10.

36.

See Chapter 6, Halachot 13-14.

37.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 15.

38.

See Chapter 6, Halachah 19.

39.

This - and the instances mentioned in situations 18, 20, 22, 24, and 26 - are derived from the principle stated in Chapter 6, Halachah 20, that whenever the perforation of an organ causes an animal to be deemed trefe, the animal is also deemed trefe if that organ is lacking.

The Kessef Mishneh explains that the Rambam's mentions a lack of only those organs that an animal could exist for a brief time without. If, however, it is impossible for an animal to exist at all without these organs, e.g., the brain and the heart, it is improper to call the animal trefe. Instead a more severe term is appropriate.

40.

This - and the instances mentioned in situations 19, 21, 23, 25, and 27 - are derived from the principle stated in Chapter 6, Halachah 20, that whenever an animal to be deemed trefe if organ is lacking, the animal is also deemed trefe if it possesses two of that organ.

41.

See Chapter 7, Halachot 1-2.

42.

This - and the instances mentioned in situations 19, 21, 23, 25, and 27 - are derived from the principle stated in Chapter 6, Halachah 20, that whenever an animal to be deemed trefe if organ is lacking, the animal is also deemed trefe if it possesses two of that organ.

43.

See Chapter 7, Halachah 3.

44.

See Chapter 7, Halachah 6.

45.

See Chapter 7, Halachah 9.

46.

See Chapter 7, Halachah 10.

47.

See Chapter 7, Halachah 9.

48.

See Chapter 7, Halachah 9.

49.

See Chapter 7, Halachah 12.

50.

See Chapter 7, Halachot 15-19.

51.

See Chapter 7, Halachah 21.

52.

See Chapter 8, Halachot 1-2.

53.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 3.

54.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 4.

55.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 5.

56.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 7.

57.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 5.

58.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 5.

59.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 8.

60.

See Chapter 8, Halachot 9-10.

61.

See Chapter 8, Halachot 11-12.

62.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 11.

63.

See Chapter 8, Halachot 13, 15-18.

64.

See Chapter 8, Halachot 21-22.

65.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 23.

66.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 26.

67.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 23.

68.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 23.

69.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 23.

70.

See Chapter 8, Halachah 23.

71.

See Chapter 9, Halachah 1.

72.

See Chapter 9, Halachah 2.

73.

See Chapter 9, Halachot 5-6.

74.

See Chapter 9, Halachah 7.

75.

See Chapter 9, Halachot 8-9.

76.

See Chapter 9, Halachah 21.

77.

Halachah 1 of the present chapter.

78.

Halachah 2 of the present chapter.

79.

Halachah 1 of the present chapter.

80.

Halachah 1 of the present chapter.

81.

Halachah 3 of the present chapter.

82.

Halachah 5 of the present chapter.

83.

Halachah 5 of the present chapter.

84.

Therefore the distinction between its thick and thin end that applies with regard to an animal does not apply with regard to a fowl. The Shulchan Aruch (Yoreh De'ah 43:6) rules that a perforation of the spleen does not render a fowl trefe. The Siftei Cohen 43:10, however, quotes opinions that rule that a perforation does render it trefe.

85.

I.e., other factors concerning a kidney which render an animal trefe, as mentioned in Chapter 8, Halachah 26. The Shulchan Aruch (Yoreh De'ah 44:10) states bluntly: "There are no factors involving the kidneys of a fowl that render it trefe."

86.

See Chapter 7, Halachot 20-21. An animal will not be affected in this way, because his ribs will protect him and the skin of his digestive organs are stronger than that of a fowl. The Ra'avad differs and states that if an animal is subjected to heat and it burns its internal organs to this degree, it will surely die immediately. Therefore, our Sages did not mention it as a trefe. The Kessef Mishneh notes that there are two other conditions that render a fowl trefe. They involve perforations in the stomachs. Since parallel - albeit not identical - conditions apply with regard to an animal, the Rambam does not list them as separate categories.

87.

See Halachah 7 of this chapter. This stringency applies only to a water fowl, because its membrane is very soft.

88.

Chullin 54a makes this statement, implying that in the Talmudic era, these rulings were already established.

89.

Kin'at Eliyahu cites Hilchot Kiddush HaChodesh 17:24 which states:

Nevertheless, since these concepts can be proven in an unshakable manner, leaving no room for question, the identity of the author, be he a prophet or a gentile, is of no concern. For when the rationale of a matter has been revealed and has proven truth..., we do not rely on [the personal authority of] the individual who made the statement... but on the proofs he presented.

From that perspective, it would appear that the empirical evidence with which science presents us should be followed. Nevertheless, in this source, the Rambam is very adamant in following the Rabbinic perspective. See Chapter 8, Halachah 25, as a clear example.

90.

The Rama (Yoreh De'ah 57:18) states that even if the animal survives for over a year, it is still deemed trefe and it is forbidden to partake of it.

91.

Kin'at Eliyahu cites Hilchot Kiddush HaChodesh 17:24 which states:

Nevertheless, since these concepts can be proven in an unshakable manner, leaving no room for question, the identity of the author, be he a prophet or a gentile, is of no concern. For when the rationale of a matter has been revealed and has proven truth..., we do not rely on [the personal authority of] the individual who made the statement... but on the proofs he presented.

From that perspective, it would appear that the empirical evidence with which science presents us should be followed. Nevertheless, in this source, the Rambam is very adamant in following the Rabbinic perspective. See Chapter 8, Halachah 25, as a clear example.

92.

Hilchot Ma'achalot Assurot 8:7-9.

93.

The Maggid Mishneh writes that although he is not permitted to sell meat on his own, he is permitted to sell under the supervision of a trustworthy expert.

The Rama (Yoreh De'ah 2:2) rules leniently concerning this manner and allows such a person to continue slaughtering in certain situations. The Siftei Cohen 2:11 questions this leniency.

Published and copyright by Moznaim Publications, all rights reserved.
To purchase this book or the entire series, please click here.
The text on this page contains sacred literature. Please do not deface or discard.
Vowelized Hebrew text courtesy Torat Emet under CC 2.5 license.
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.
Download Rambam Study Schedules: 3 Chapters | 1 Chapter | Daily Mitzvah