1

It is a positive commandment1 to nullify a loan in the Sabbatical year, as [Deuteronomy 15:2] states: "All of those who bear debt must release their hold." A person who demands payment of a debt after the Sabbatical year passed2 violates a negative commandment,3 as it is stated [ibid.]: "One shall not demand [payment] from his friend and his brother."

א

מִצְוַת עֲשֵׂה לְהַשְׁמִיט הַמַּלְוֶה בַּשְּׁבִיעִית שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים טו ב) "שָׁמוֹט כָּל בַּעַל מַשֵּׁה יָדוֹ". וְהַתּוֹבֵעַ חוֹב שֶׁעָבְרָה עָלָיו שְׁבִיעִית עָבַר עַל לֹא תַּעֲשֶׂה שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים טו ב) "לֹא יִגּשֹׁ אֶת רֵעֵהוּ וְאֶת אָחִיו":

2

The nullification of debts applies according to Scriptural Law only in the era when the Jubilee year is observed4 and [the sale of] land is also nullified, for the land [that has been sold] returns to its original owners without financial payment.5 This matter was conveyed through the chain of tradition. Our Sages declared:6 In the era when you nullify [the sale of] land, you nullify debts everywhere, whether in Eretz Yisrael or in the Diaspora. In the era when you do not nullify [the sale of] land, you do not nullify debts anywhere, even in Eretz Yisrael.

ב

אֵין שְׁמִטַּת כְּסָפִים נוֹהֶגֶת מִן הַתּוֹרָה אֶלָּא בִּזְמַן שֶׁהַיּוֹבֵל נוֹהֵג שֶׁיֵּשׁ שָׁם שְׁמִטַּת קַרְקַע. שֶׁהֲרֵי יָשׁוּב הַקַּרְקַע לִבְעָלָיו בְּלֹא כֶּסֶף. וְדָבָר זֶה קַבָּלָה הוּא. אָמְרוּ חֲכָמִים בִּזְמַן שֶׁאַתָּה מְשַׁמֵּט קַרְקַע אַתָּה מְשַׁמֵּט כְּסָפִים בְּכָל מָקוֹם בֵּין בָּאָרֶץ בֵּין בְּחוּצָה לָאָרֶץ. וּבִזְמַן שֶׁאֵין שָׁם שְׁמִטַּת קַרְקַע אֵין אַתָּה מְשַׁמֵּט כְּסָפִים בִּשְׁבִיעִית אֲפִלּוּ בָּאָרֶץ:

3

According to Rabbinic Law, the nullification of debts applies in the present age in all places,7 even though the Jubilee year is not observed.8 [This is a decree, instituted] so that the concept of the nullification of debts will not be forgotten by the Jewish people.

ג

וּמִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים שֶׁתְּהֵא שְׁמִטַּת כְּסָפִים נוֹהֶגֶת בַּזְּמַן הַזֶּה בְּכָל מָקוֹם וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵין הַיּוֹבֵל נוֹהֵג כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא תִּשְׁתַּכֵּחַ תּוֹרַת שְׁמִטַּת הַכְּסָפִים מִיִּשְׂרָאֵל:

4

The Sabbatical year does not nullify debts until its conclusion. [This is derived as follows: Deuteronomy 15:1-2] states: "At the end of seven years, you shall effect a remission. This is the matter of the remission." And [Deuteronomy 31:10] states:9 "At the end of seven years, at the time of the Sabbatical year, during the holiday of Sukkot." Just as in that instance, [the event takes place] after the seven [years], so too, the nullification of the debts takes place after the seven [years].

Therefore if one lent money to a colleague in the Sabbatical year itself, he may demand payment of his debt for the entire year.10 When the sun sets on the night of Rosh HaShanah of the eighth year,11 the debt is nullified.12

ד

אֵין שְׁבִיעִית מְשַׁמֶּטֶת כְּסָפִים אֶלָּא בְּסוֹפָהּ שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים טו א) "מִקֵּץ שֶׁבַע שָׁנִים תַּעֲשֶׂה" שְׁמִטָּה וְזֶה דְּבַר הַשְּׁמִטָּה וְשָׁם הוּא אוֹמֵר (דברים לא י) "מִקֵּץ שֶׁבַע שָׁנִים בְּמֹעֵד שְׁנַת הַשְּׁמִטָּה בְּחַג הַסֻּכּוֹת". מָה שָׁם אַחַר שֶׁבַע אַף הַשְׁמָטַת כְּסָפִים אַחַר שֶׁבַע. לְפִיכָךְ הִלְוָה אֶת חֲבֵרוֹ בַּשְּׁבִיעִית עַצְמָהּ גּוֹבֶה חוֹבוֹ כָּל הַשָּׁנָה. וּכְשֶׁתִּשְׁקַע חַמָּה בְּלֵילֵי רֹאשׁ הַשָּׁנָה שֶׁל מוֹצָאֵי שְׁבִיעִית אָבַד הַחוֹב:

5

If one slaughtered a cow and divided it13 under the supposition that today would be [declared as] Rosh HaShanah,14 but instead, a day was added to Elul and thus that day was the final day of the Sabbatical year, the money is lost, for the Sabbatical year ended while the debt was extant.15

ה

שָׁחַט אֶת הַפָּרָה וְחִלְּקָהּ עַל דַּעַת שֶׁהַיּוֹם רֹאשׁ הַשָּׁנָה שֶׁל מוֹצָאֵי שְׁבִיעִית וְנִתְעַבֵּר אֱלוּל וְנִמְצָא אוֹתוֹ הַיּוֹם סוֹף שְׁבִיעִית אָבְדוּ הַדָּמִים. שֶׁהֲרֵי עָבְרָה שְׁבִיעִית עַל הַחוֹב:

6

The Sabbatical year nullifies a loan, even a loan supported by a promissory note which creates a lien on one's possessions.16 If, however, the borrower designated a field [to serve as payment] for the loan, it is not nullified.17 The Sabbatical year also nullifies the obligation to take an oath,18 for [the prooftext] states: "He shall not demand," i.e., neither payment, nor an oath.

ו

שְׁבִיעִית מְשַׁמֶּטֶת אֶת הַמִּלְוֶה וַאֲפִלּוּ מִלְוֶה שֶׁבִּשְׁטָר שֶׁיֵּשׁ בּוֹ אַחֲרָיוּת נְכָסִים הֲרֵי זֶה מְשַׁמֵּט. וְאִם סִיֵּם לוֹ שָׂדֶה בְּהַלְוָאָתוֹ אֵינוֹ מַשְׁמִיט. וְהַשְּׁבִיעִית מְשַׁמֶּטֶת אֶת הַשְּׁבוּעָה שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים טו ב) "לֹא יִגּשֹׁ" מִכָּל מָקוֹם לֹא לְשַׁלֵּם וְלֹא לְהִשָּׁבַע:

7

When does the above apply? With regard to an oath imposed by the judges19and the like, i.e., obligations that were he to accept them, the Sabbatical year would nullify them. But oaths taken by watchmen or partners20 and the like, i.e., oaths that were he to admit [the obligation], he would be required to pay [after the Sabbatical year],21 he is required to take the oath after the Sabbatical year.

ז

בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בִּשְׁבוּעַת הַדַּיָּנִין וְכָל כַּיּוֹצֵא בָּהּ מִדְּבָרִים שֶׁאִם יוֹדֶה בָּהֶן שְׁבִיעִית מְשַׁמַּטְתָן. אֲבָל שְׁבוּעַת הַשּׁוֹמְרִין וְהַשֻּׁתָּפִין וְכַיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן מִשָּׁבוּעוֹת שֶׁאִם יוֹדֶה יְשַׁלֵּם הֲרֵי זֶה יִשָּׁבַע אַחַר הַשְּׁמִטָּה:

8

If a person gave a colleague a loan and then demanded payment, [the colleague] denied the obligation and remained in denial when [the conclusion of] the Sabbatical year arrived and then he admitted his obligation or witnesses came [and testified to that effect] after the Sabbatical year [was concluded], the obligation is not nullified.22

ח

הִלְוָהוּ וּתְבָעוֹ וְכָפַר בּוֹ. וְהִגִּיעַ הַשְּׁמִטָּה וְהוּא בִּכְפִירָתוֹ. וְהוֹדָה אַחַר שֶׁעָבְרָה שְׁבִיעִית. אוֹ שֶׁבָּאוּ עָלָיו עֵדִים אַחַר הַשְּׁבִיעִית אֵין הַשְּׁבִיעִית מְשַׁמֶּטֶת:

9

When a person lends money to a colleague and sets [the time of payment] in ten years time, it is not nullified [by the Sabbatical year. The rationale is that] although [ultimately, the command,] "Do not demand [payment]" will apply,23 at present, he may not demand payment.24 If he stipulated that he would not demand payment, [the debt] is nullified by the Sabbatical year.25

ט

הַמַּלְוֶה אֶת חֲבֵרוֹ וְקָבַע לוֹ זְמַן לְעֶשֶׂר שָׁנִים אֵינוֹ מְשַׁמֵּט. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהוּא בָּא לִידֵי (דברים טו ב) "לֹא יִגּשֹׁ" הֲרֵי הוּא עַתָּה אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לִנְגּשֹׁ. הִתְנָה עִמּוֹ שֶׁלֹּא יִתְבָּעֶנּוּ שְׁבִיעִית מְשַׁמֶּטֶת:

10

When a person lends money to a colleague and he stipulates with [the borrower] that [the debt] will not be nullified by the Sabbatical year, it is nullified, for he cannot negate the law of the Sabbatical year.26 If [the borrower] stipulates that he will not nullify this debt, even in the Sabbatical year, the stipulation is binding, for any stipulation made regarding financial matters is binding. Thus this person took on a financial obligation which the Torah did not obligate him in.27

י

הַמַּלְוֶה אֶת חֲבֵרוֹ וְהִתְנָה עִמּוֹ שֶׁלֹּא תְּשַׁמְּטֶנּוּ שְׁבִיעִית הֲרֵי זֶה נִשְׁמָט שֶׁאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לְבַטֵּל דִּין הַשְּׁבִיעִית. הִתְנָה עִמּוֹ שֶׁלֹּא יְשַׁמֵּט הוּא חוֹב זֶה וַאֲפִלּוּ בַּשְּׁבִיעִית תְּנָאוֹ קַיָּם. שֶׁכָּל תְּנַאי שֶׁבְּמָמוֹן קַיָּם. וְנִמְצָא זֶה חִיֵּב עַצְמוֹ בְּמָמוֹן שֶׁלֹּא חִיְּבַתּוּ תּוֹרָה שֶׁהוּא חַיָּב:

11

An account at a store is not nullified by the Sabbatical year.28 If it is established as a debt,29 it is nullified.30 The wage of a worker is not nullified.31 If it is considered as a debt, it is nullified.

יא

הַקָּפַת הַחֲנוּת אֵינָהּ נִשְׁמֶטֶת. וְאִם עֲשָׂאָהּ מִלְוֶה נִשְׁמֶטֶת. שְׂכַר שָׂכִיר אֵינוֹ נִשְׁמָט. וְאִם זְקָפוֹ עָלָיו בְּמִלְוֶה נִשְׁמָט:

12

The fines for a rapist,32 a seducer33 and one who spreads a slanderous report [about his wife]34 are not nullified by the Sabbatical year.35 If they are considered as debts,36 they are nullified. When are they considered as a debt? When the matter was brought to court.

יב

קְנָסוֹת שֶׁל אוֹנֵס וְשֶׁל מְפַתֶּה וְהַמּוֹצִיא שֵׁם רַע אֵינָם נִשְׁמָטִין. וְאִם זְקָפָן בְּמִלְוֶה נִשְׁמָטִים. וּמֵאֵימָתַי נִזְקָפִין בְּמִלְוֶה מִשְּׁעַת הַעֲמָדָה בַּדִּין:

13

When a person divorces his wife before the Sabbatical year, [his obligations to her by virtue of] her ketubah37 are not nullified by the Sabbatical year.38 If she impaired the legal power [of her ketubah]39 or considered it as a debt, it can be nullified.

יג

הַמְגָרֵשׁ אֶת אִשְׁתּוֹ קֹדֶם הַשְּׁמִטָּה אֵין כְּתֻבָּתָהּ נִשְׁמֶטֶת. וְאִם פְּגַמְתָּהּ אוֹ זְקַפְתָּהּ עָלָיו בְּמִלְוֶה נִשְׁמֶטֶת:

14

When a person lends money in exchange for security, the debt is not nullified by the Sabbatical year,40 provided the security is equal in value to the debt. If the debt exceeds the value of the security, the extra amount is nullified by the Sabbatical year.41

יד

הַמַּלְוֶה עַל הַמַּשְׁכּוֹן אֵינוֹ מַשְׁמִיט. וְהוּא שֶׁיִּהְיֶה הַחוֹב כְּנֶגֶד הַמַּשְׁכּוֹן. וְאִם הָיָה יֶתֶר מַשְׁמִיט הַיֶּתֶר:

15

When a person hands over42 his promissory notes to the court, telling [the judges]: "Collect my debt for me," the debts are not nullified by the Sabbatical year. [This is derived from Deuteronomy 15:3]: "[a debt] that you have from your brother."[Implied is that debts demanded by "your brother," a private individual, are nullified by the Sabbatical year. [Payment for] these [debts, by contrast,] is being demanded by the court.

Similarly, if the court rendered a judgment, writing: "So-and-so, you are obligated to give this person this-and-this amount," [the debt] is not nullified. Such [a debt] is considered as if it has already been collected and entered [the creditor's] possession. It does not resemble a loan.

טו

הַמּוֹסֵר שִׁטְרוֹתָיו לְבֵית דִּין וְאָמַר לָהֶם אַתֶּם גְּבוּ לִי חוֹבִי זֶה אֵינוֹ נִשְׁמָט שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים טו ג) "וַאֲשֶׁר יִהְיֶה לְךָ אֶת אָחִיךָ" וְזֶה בֵּית דִּין תּוֹבְעִין אוֹתוֹ. וְכֵן בֵּית דִּין שֶׁחָתְכוּ אֶת הַדִּין וְכָתְבוּ אִישׁ פְּלוֹנִי אַתָּה חַיָּב לִתֵּן לָזֶה כָּךְ וְכָךְ אֵינוֹ נִשְׁמָט. שֶׁזֶּה כְּגָבוּי הוּא וּכְאִלּוּ בָּא לְיָדוֹ וְאֵינוֹ כְּמִלְוֶה:

16

When Hillel the Elder saw that the people would refrain from lending to each other and thus violated the Scriptural charge [Deuteronomy 15:9]: "Lest there be a wicked thought in your heart,"43 he ordained a pruzbol44 so that debts would not be nullified and people would lend to each other.

A pruzbol is effective only with regard to the nullification of debts in the present era which are a Rabbinic institution.45 A pruzbol is not effective with regard to the nullification of debts by Scriptural Law.46

טז

כְּשֶׁרָאָה הִלֵּל הַזָּקֵן שֶׁנִּמְנְעוּ מִלְּהַלְווֹת זֶה אֶת זֶה וְעוֹבְרִין עַל הַכָּתוּב בַּתּוֹרָה (דברים טו ט) "הִשָּׁמֶר לְךָ פֶּן יִהְיֶה דָבָר" וְגוֹ' הִתְקִין פְּרוֹזְבּוּל כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא יִשָּׁמֵט הַחוֹב עַד שֶׁיַּלְווּ זֶה אֶת זֶה. וְאֵין הַפְּרוֹזְבּוּל מוֹעִיל אֶלָּא בִּשְׁמִטַּת כְּסָפִים בַּזְּמַן הַזֶּה שֶׁהִיא מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים. אֲבָל שְׁמִטָּה שֶׁל תּוֹרָה אֵין הַפְּרוֹזְבּוֹל מוֹעִיל בָּהּ:

17

A pruzbol should be composed only by very great Sages like the court of Rabbi Ami and Rabbi Assi,47 for they are suitable to release financial [obligations due] others.48 Other courts [of lesser authority] may not compose [a pruzbol].49

יז

אֵין כּוֹתְבִין פְּרוֹזְבּוּל אֶלָּא חֲכָמִים גְּדוֹלִים בְּיוֹתֵר כְּבֵית דִּינוֹ שֶׁל רַבִּי אַמִּי וְרַבִּי אַסִּי שֶׁהֵן רְאוּיִין לְהַפְקִיעַ מָמוֹן בְּנֵי אָדָם. אֲבָל שְׁאָר בָּתֵּי דִּינִין אֵין כּוֹתְבִין:

18

This represents the body of a pruzbol: "I am notifying you,50so-and-so and so-and so51 the judges in this-and-this places, [that I reserve the right] to collect all the debts [owed] to me52 at any time I desire."53 The judges or the witnesses should sign below.54

יח

זֶהוּ גּוּפוֹ שֶׁל פְּרוֹזְבּוּל. מוֹסְרַנִי לָכֶם פְּלוֹנִי וּפְלוֹנִי הַדַּיָּנִין שֶׁבְּמָקוֹם פְּלוֹנִי שֶׁכָּל חוֹב שֶׁיֵּשׁ לִי שֶׁאֶגְבֶּנּוּ כָּל זְמַן שֶׁאֶרְצֶה. וְהַדַּיָּנִין אוֹ הָעֵדִים חוֹתְמִין מִלְּמַטָּה:

19

A pruzbol may be composed only when [the borrower possesses] land.55 If the borrower does not possess land, the lender should grant56 the borrower even the slightest amount of land - even enough to grow a cabbage stalk57- in his field. [Even if] he lent him place for an oven or a range, a pruzbol may be composed.58 If [the borrower] owns a field that was given as security, a pruzbol may be composed on that basis.

יט

אֵין כּוֹתְבִין פְּרוֹזְבּוּל אֶלָּא עַל הַקַּרְקַע. אִם אֵין קַרְקַע לַלּוֹוֶה מוֹכֵר לוֹ הַמַּלְוֶה כָּל שֶׁהוּא בְּתוֹךְ שָׂדֵהוּ אֲפִלּוּ קֶלַח שֶׁל כְּרוּב. הִשְׁאִילוֹ מָקוֹם לְתַנּוּר אוֹ לְכִירָה כּוֹתְבִין עָלָיו פְּרוֹזְבּוּל. הָיְתָה לוֹ שָׂדֶה מְמֻשְׁכֶּנֶת כּוֹתְבִין עָלֶיהָ פְּרוֹזְבּוּל:

20

[A pruzbol] may be composed against a man59 based on property owned by his wife60 or against orphans on property owned by their guardian.61 If [the borrower] does not possess land, but the guarantor does, we can compose a pruzbol because of it.62 If [a borrower] is owed a debt by a colleague and the colleague owns land - since that land is on lien [to the first borrower] - we may compose a pruzbol because of it.

כ

כּוֹתְבִין לְאִישׁ עַל נִכְסֵי אִשְׁתּוֹ וְלִיתוֹמִים עַל נִכְסֵי אַפַּטְרוֹפּוּס. אֵין לוֹ קַרְקַע וְלָעָרֵב יֵשׁ לוֹ קַרְקַע כּוֹתְבִין עָלֶיהָ פְּרוֹזְבּוּל. הָיָה לוֹ חוֹב עַל חֲבֵרוֹ וְיֵשׁ לַחֲבֵרוֹ קַרְקַע הוֹאִיל וְהוּא תַּחַת שִׁעְבּוּדוֹ כּוֹתֵב עָלָיו פְּרוֹזְבּוּל:

21

When one person borrows from five others, each one must have a pruzbol composed.63 When five people borrow from one, one pruzbol is sufficient for him for all the debts.64

כא

אֶחָד שֶׁלָּוָה מֵחֲמִשָּׁה צְרִיכִים פְּרוֹזְבּוּל לְכָל אֶחָד וְאֶחָד. וַחֲמִשָּׁה שֶׁלָּווּ מֵאֶחָד דַּיּוֹ פְּרוֹזְבּוּל אֶחָד לְכֻלָּן:

22

When a person has a pruzbol composed and then he makes a loan, it is not effective. Instead, the loan will be nullified unless he composes [another] pruzbol after giving the loan. Thus one can conclude that any loan which precedes a pruzbol is not nullified because of this pruzbol. If the pruzbol precedes the loan, it is nullified [despite] this pruzbol.65

כב

כָּתַב הַפְּרוֹזְבּוּל תְּחִלָּה וְאַחַר כָּךְ הִלְוָה אֵינוֹ מוֹעִיל. אֶלָּא מַשְׁמִיט עַד שֶׁיִּכְתֹּב הַפְּרוֹזְבּוּל אַחַר שֶׁהִלְוָה. נִמְצֵאתָ אוֹמֵר שֶׁכָּל מִלְוֶה הַקּוֹדֶמֶת לִפְרוֹזְבּוּל אֵינָהּ נִשְׁמֶטֶת בִּפְרוֹזְבּוּל זֶה. וְאִם הַפְּרוֹזְבּוּל קוֹדֵם לַמִּלְוֶה נִשְׁמֶטֶת בִּפְרוֹזְבּוּל זֶה:

23

Accordingly, a pruzbol that is predated is valid, while one that is postdated, is invalid.

What is implied? One wrote a pruzbol in Nissan and predated it to Adar, it is valid, for he has impaired its legal power, for [only the loans given] until Adar are not nullified.66 If, however, he postdated it and dated it in Iyar, it is invalid, for he has strengthened its legal power, for [were it to be effective] the loans given until Iyar would not be nullified. This is unlawful, because it is only [the loans given] until Nissan that are not nullified, for that [is when] the matters were conveyed to the court.

כג

לְפִיכָךְ פְּרוֹזְבּוּל הַמֻּקְדָּם כָּשֵׁר. וְהַמְאֻחָר פָּסוּל. כֵּיצַד. כְּתָבוֹ בְּנִיסָן וְהִקְדִּים זְמַנּוֹ מֵאֲדָר כָּשֵׁר. שֶׁהֲרֵי הוּרַע כֹּחוֹ שֶׁאֵינוֹ מַשְׁמִיט אֶלָּא עַד אֲדָר. אֲבָל אִם אִחֵר זְמַנּוֹ וּכְתָבוֹ מֵאִיָּר פָּסוּל שֶׁהֲרֵי מְיַפֶּה כֹּחוֹ שֶׁאֵינוֹ מַשְׁמִיט עַד אִיָּר שֶׁלֹּא כַּדִּין. שֶׁאֵין דִּינוֹ שֶׁלֹּא יַשְׁמִיט אֶלָּא עַד נִיסָן בִּשְׁעַת מְסִירַת הַדְּבָרִים לְבֵית דִּין:

24

When a person produces a promissory note after the Sabbatical year without it being accompanied by a pruzbol, the debt is lost.67 If he says: "I possessed [a pruzbol] and it was lost, his word is accepted.68 For from the time of the danger69 onward,70 a creditor was allowed to collect his debt [after the Sabbatical year] without a pruzbol.

Moreover, when a creditor would bring the promissory note [to court] or would come and demand payment of a loan supported by a verbal commitment [alone], [the court] tells the defendant: "Pay him." If the defendant claims: "Where is his pruzbol?", the court asks the plaintiff: "Did you have a pruzbol that was lost?" If he answers affirmatively, his word is accepted.71 If he admits that he did not have a pruzbol, the debt is nullified.

Orphans72 do not require a pruzbol.73

כד

הַמּוֹצִיא שְׁטַר חוֹב אַחַר שְׁבִיעִית וְאֵין עִמּוֹ פְּרוֹזְבּוּל אָבַד חוֹבוֹ. וְאִם אָמַר הָיָה לִי וְאָבַד נֶאֱמָן. שֶׁמִּזְּמַן הַסַּכָּנָה וְאֵילָךְ בַּעַל חוֹב גּוֹבֶה שֶׁלֹּא בִּפְרוֹזְבּוּל. וְלֹא עוֹד אֶלָּא כְּשֶׁיָּבִיא בַּעַל חוֹב אֶת שְׁטָרוֹ אוֹ כְּשֶׁיָּבוֹא לִתְבֹּעַ בְּמִלְוֶה עַל פֶּה אוֹמְרִים לַנִּתְבָּע שַׁלֵּם לוֹ. וְאִם טָעַן הַנִּתְבָּע וְאָמַר אַיֵּה פְּרוֹזְבּוּל שֶׁלּוֹ. אוֹמְרִים לַתּוֹבֵעַ הָיָה לְךָ פְּרוֹזְבּוּל וְאָבַד אִם אָמַר הֵן נֶאֱמָן. וְאִם הוֹדָה שֶׁלֹּא כָּתַב פְּרוֹזְבּוּל אָבַד חוֹבוֹ. וְהַיְתוֹמִים אֵינָן צְרִיכִין פְּרוֹזְבּוּל:

25

[When the plaintiff] produces a pruzbol, the defendant claims: "The loan for which he is demanding payment was made after the pruzbol,"74 and the plaintiff retorts: "It was made before the pruzbol," the plaintiff's word is accepted. [The rationale is] were he to have claimed: "I had [a pruzbol] and it was lost," his word would have been accepted75 even though we do not know the date of the pruzbol that was lost.

כה

הוֹצִיא פְּרוֹזְבּוּל וְטָעַן הַנִּתְבָּע וְאָמַר מִלְוֶה זוֹ שֶׁהוּא תּוֹבֵעַ אַחַר פְּרוֹזְבּוּל זֶה הָיְתָה וְהַתּוֹבֵעַ אוֹמֵר קֹדֶם פְּרוֹזְבּוּל הָיְתָה הַתּוֹבֵעַ נֶאֱמָן. שֶׁאִלּוּ אָמַר הָיָה לִי וְאָבַד נֶאֱמָן וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵין אָנוּ יוֹדְעִין זְמַן הַפְּרוֹזְבּוּל שֶׁאָבַד:

26

If the defendant claims: "I owe him a debt," and the plaintiff states: "No, it is an account from a store which is not nullified [by the Sabbatical year], because I have not yet considered it as a loan,"76 his word is accepted, for were he to desire,77he could say: "It was a loan, but I had a pruzbol and it was lost." [Leniency is granted in these instances,] because once the Sages instituted [the concept of] pruzbol, we operate under the assumption that a person will not forgo something permitted78 and partake of something that is forbidden.79

כו

טָעַן הַנִּתְבָּע וְאָמַר מִלְוֶה יֵשׁ לוֹ אֶצְלִי. וְהַתּוֹבֵעַ אוֹמֵר לֹא כִּי אֶלָּא הַקָּפַת חֲנוּת הִיא שֶׁאֵינָהּ נִשְׁמֶטֶת שֶׁהֲרֵי לֹא זָקַפְתִּי מִלְוֶה הֲרֵי זֶה נֶאֱמָן. שֶׁהֲרֵי אִם יִרְצֶה יֹאמַר מִלְוֶה הָיְתָה וּפְרוֹזְבּוּל הָיָה לִי וְאָבַד. שֶׁכֵּיוָן שֶׁתִּקְּנוּ חֲכָמִים פְּרוֹזְבּוּל חֲזָקָה הִיא שֶׁאֵין אָדָם מַנִּיחַ דָּבָר מֻתָּר וְאוֹכֵל דָּבָר אָסוּר:

27

When Torah Sages offer loans to each other80 and one conveys his words to his students,81 saying: "I am notifying you [that I reserve the right] to collect all the debts [owed] to me at any time I desire," he does not have to compose a pruzbol.82 [The rationale is that Torah scholars] know that the nullification of debts in the present era is a Rabbinic decree and it can be negated verbally.

כז

תַּלְמִידֵי חֲכָמִים שֶׁהִלְווּ זֶה אֶת זֶה וּמָסַר דְּבָרָיו לְתַלְמִידִים וְאָמַר מוֹסְרַנִי לָכֶם שֶׁכָּל חוֹב שֶׁיֵּשׁ לִי שֶׁאֶגְבֶּנּוּ כָּל זְמַן שֶׁאֶרְצֶה אֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ לִכְתֹּב פְּרוֹזְבּוּל. מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהֵן יוֹדְעִים שֶׁהַשְׁמָטַת כְּסָפִים בַּזְּמַן הַזֶּה מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם וּבִדְבָרִים בִּלְבַד הִיא נִדְחֵית:

28

[Whenever] anyone returns a debt [despite the fact] that the Sabbatical year has passed,83 the spirits of our Sages are gratified because of him.84 [When receiving the payment,] the lender must say to the one who is making restitution: "I am nullifying [the debt] and your [obligation] to me has been released."85 If the debtor says: "Nevertheless, I desire that you accept it," he should accept it. For the Torah states: "One shall not demand [payment]," and payment was not demanded.86

[The debtor] should not tell [the creditor]: "I am giving them to you as [payment of ] my debt. Instead, he should tell him: "[The money] is mine,87 and I am giving it to you as a present."

כח

כָּל הַמַּחֲזִיר חוֹב שֶׁעָבְרָה עָלָיו שְׁבִיעִית רוּחַ חֲכָמִים נוֹחָה הֵימֶנּוּ. וְצָרִיךְ הַמַּלְוֶה לוֹמַר לַמַּחֲזִיר מַשְׁמִיט אֲנִי וּכְבָר נִפְטַרְתָּ מִמֶּנִּי. אָמַר לוֹ אַף עַל פִּי כֵן רְצוֹנִי שֶׁתְּקַבֵּל יְקַבֵּל מִמֶּנּוּ שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים טו ב) "לֹא יִגּשֹׁ" וַהֲרֵי לֹא נָגַשׂ. וְאַל יֹאמַר לוֹ בְּחוֹבִי אֲנִי נוֹתֵן לְךָ אֶלָּא יֹאמַר לוֹ שֶׁלִּי הֵם וּבְמַתָּנָה אֲנִי נוֹתֵן לְךָ:

29

If [a debtor] returned a debt, but did not make the above statements, [the lender] should turn the conversation to the point where the debtor says: "[The money] is mine, and I am giving it to you as a present." If [the debtor] does not make such statements, [the creditor] should not accept it from him.88 Instead, [the debtor] should take his money and depart.

כט

הֶחֱזִיר לוֹ חוֹבוֹ וְלֹא אָמַר לוֹ כֵּן. מְסַבֵּב עִמּוֹ בִּדְבָרִים עַד שֶׁיֹּאמַר לוֹ שֶׁלִּי הֵם וּבְמַתָּנָה נְתַתִּים לְךָ. וְאִם לֹא אָמַר לֹא יְקַבֵּל מִמֶּנּוּ אֶלָּא יִטּל מְעוֹתָיו וְיֵלֵךְ לוֹ:

30

One who refrains from lending money to a colleague before the Sabbatical year lest [the repayment] of the debt be delayed and it be nullified, violates a negative commandment, 89 as [Deuteronomy 15:9] states: "Be careful [lest there be a wicked thought in your heart....]" It is a severe sin, for the Torah warned against it with two adjurations, for it is written: "Be careful lest," and whenever the Torah uses the expressions "Be careful," "lest," or "Do not," it is communicating a negative commandment.90 The Torah objected to this evil thought and called it "wicked" and the the verse continued warning and commanding one not to refraining [from lending], but to give [the loan], as [ibid.:10] states: "You shall certainly give him and your Heart should not regret giving him." [Indeed,] the Holy One, blessed be He, promised that the reward for this mitzvah will be granted in this world,91 as [the verse continues:] "Because of this God will bless you."

ל

מִי שֶׁנִּמְנָע מִלְּהַלְווֹת אֶת חֲבֵרוֹ קֹדֶם הַשְּׁמִטָּה שֶׁמָּא יִתְאַחֵר הַחוֹב שֶׁלּוֹ וְיִשָּׁמֵט עָבַר בְּלֹא תַּעֲשֶׂה שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר הִשָּׁמֶר לְךָ וְגוֹ'. וְחֵטְא גָּדוֹל הוּא שֶׁהֲרֵי הִזְהִירָה עָלָיו תּוֹרָה בִּשְׁנֵי לָאוִין שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים טו ט) "הִשָּׁמֶר לְךָ פֶּן" וְגוֹ'. וְכָל מָקוֹם שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר הִשָּׁמֶר אוֹ פֶּן אוֹ אַל הֲרֵי זֶה מִצְוַת לֹא תַּעֲשֶׂה. וְהַתּוֹרָה הִקְפִּידָה עַל מַחֲשָׁבָה רָעָה זוֹ וּקְרָאַתּוּ (דברים טו ט) "בְּלִיַּעַל". וַהֲרֵי הוֹסִיף הַכָּתוּב לְהַזְהִיר וּלְצַוּוֹת שֶׁלֹּא יִמָּנַע אֶלָּא יִתֵּן שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים טו י) "נָתוֹן תִּתֵּן לוֹ וְלֹא יֵרַע לְבָבְךָ בְּתִתְּךָ לוֹ" וְגוֹ'. וְהִבְטִיחַ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא בִּשְׂכַר מִצְוָה זוֹ בָּעוֹלָם הַזֶּה שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים טו י) "כִּי בִּגְלַל הַדָּבָר הַזֶּה יְבָרֶכְךָ" וְגוֹ':