1

There are brothers who are fit to perform either the rite of yibbum or the rite of chalitzah. There are brothers who are not fit to perform either the rite of yibbum or the rite of chalitzah. [The deceased's wives] are under no obligation to them at all; they may marry another man. There are brothers who are fit to perform the rite of chalitzah but not the rite of yibbum, and there are brothers who are fit to perform the rite of yibbum but not the rite of chalitzah.1

א

יש אחין שראויין ליבום או לחליצה. ויש אחין שאינן ראוין לא ליבום ולא לחליצה ואין להם זיקה כלל אלא יבמתו מותרת לזר. ויש אחין שראוין לחליצה ואינן ראויין ליבום. ויש אחין שהן ראויין ליבום ואינן ראויין לחליצה:

2

With regard to the following, [the deceased's wives] have no obligation at all: a saris chamah2 and an androgynous,3 for they are not fit to father children, nor had they been at any time.4

ב

ואלו הם שאין להם זיקה כלל סריס חמה ואנדרוגינוס מפני שאינן ראויין לילד ולא היה להן שעת הכושר:

3

These are [the brothers] who are fit to perform the rite of yibbum,5 but not the rite of chalitzah: a deaf-mute, a mentally incompetent man and a minor. [The rationale is that] they lack the mental competence to perform chalitzah.

When a deaf-mute performs yibbum, he may never divorce [his yevamah]. For by entering into relations with her, he establishes a marriage bond that is completely binding, and he is incapable of divorcing a woman in a completely effective manner.6

[When a yavam who is below the age of majority but more than] nine years and one day old performs yibbum, [he acquires his yevamah as a wife]. He may not, however, divorce [her] until he attains majority, as we have explained.7

ג

ואלו מייבמין ולא חולצין החרש והשוטה והקטן מפני שאין בהן דעת לחלוץ וכשיבם החרש אינו מוציא לעולם שבעילתו עושה אותה אשת איש גמורה ואין גירושיו גירושין גמורין. ובן תשע שנים ויום אחד שיבם אינו יכול לגרש עד שיגדיל כמו שבארנו:

4

These are [the brothers] who are fit to perform the rite of chalitzah, but not the rite of yibbum: those whose status is in doubt - e.g., there is a doubt whether a yevamah is forbidden to [the deceased's] brother,8 a man with crushed testicles, or a crushed member, or who has been castrated in any other way,9 and an elderly man whose virility has been weakened and he is incapable.

If [a yavam] who has been castrated enters into relations [with his yevamah], he acquires [her as a wife], for there was a time when he was sexually potent. He must, however, divorce her with a get, because he is forbidden to marry [a native-born Jewess].

A tumtum10 should perform chalitzah, but not yibbum, because his status is one of doubt. If an operation is performed, and it is revealed that he is a male, he may perform either chalitzah or yibbum, as he desires.11

Brothers [of the deceased who are not in any of the categories listed above] may perform either chalitzah or yibbum.

ד

ואלו חולצין ולא מייבמין הספיקות כגון שהיתה ספק ערוה על אחיו ופצוע דכא וכרות שפכה וכיוצא בהן ממיני הסירוס והזקן ביותר שתשש כחו וכשל. ואם בעל סריס אדם קנה שהרי היתה לו שעת הכושר ומוציא בגט מפני שהוא אסור לבא בקהל. והטומטום חולץ ולא מייבם מפני שהוא ספק ואם נקרע ונמצא זכר רצה חולץ רצה מייבם ושאר האחין או חולצין או מייבמין:

5

There are yevamot who are fit to perform either the rite of chalitzah or the rite of yibbum. There are yevamot who are not fit to perform either the rite of yibbum or the rite of chalitzah. They are under no obligation to [the deceased's brothers] at all, and they may marry another man. There are yevamot who are fit to perform the rite of chalitzah, but not the rite of yibbum, and there are yevamot who are fit to perform the rite of yibbum but not the rite of chalitzah.12

ה

יש יבמות שהן ראויות לחליצה או ליבום ויש יבמות שאינן ראויות לא לחליצה ולא ליבום ואין עליהן זיקה כלל ומותרות להנשא לזר ויש יבמות שהן ראויות לחליצה אבל לא ליבום ויש יבמות שהן ראויות ליבום אבל לא לחליצה:

6

These are [the yevamot] who may perform the rite of yibbum, but not the rite of chalitzah: a deaf-mute, a mentally incompetent woman and a minor.13

[The rationale why they cannot perform chalitzah is that] they lack the mental competence to read and to understand. If the yavam desires to divorce the deaf-mute with a get after he engages in relations with her, he may.14

ו

ואלו שמתייבמות ולא חולצות החרשת והשוטה והקטנה לפי שאין בהן דעת לקרות ולהבין ואם רצה היבם לגרש החרשת בגט אחר שיבעול אותה ה"ז מגרש:

7

These are [the yevamot] who may perform the rite of chalitzah, but not the rite of yibbum: [Women who are] forbidden [to the yavam] because of a negative commandment, [because of a Rabbinic ordinance - i.e.,] sh'niyot, or because of a positive commandment, as will be explained.15

Whenever there is a doubt whether or not a woman was divorced [by the deceased], she should perform chalitzah and not yibbum, lest the yavam violate a prohibition. For a brother's wife who was divorced is forbidden as an ervah.16 If, however, there was a doubt regarding whether a woman was consecrated to one's [deceased] brother, her status is like that of another yevamah, and she may perform either chalitzah or yibbum. For there is no possibility of [a prohibition being involved].17

Similarly, the wife of a deaf-mute,18 an elderly woman or a woman who has become barren are like other yevamot. The yavam may perform either chalitzah or yibbum, as he desires. [The rationale is that] the elderly woman and the woman who has become barren were once fit [to bear children].

ז

ואלו שחולצות ולא מתייבמות איסורי לאוין והשניות ואיסורי עשה כמו שיתבאר. וכל אשה שהיא ספק מגורשת חולצת ולא מתייבמת שמא יפגע בערוה שאשת אחיו שגירשה אסורה עליו משום ערוה אבל מי שהיא מקודשת לאחיו בספק קידושין הרי היא כשאר כל היבמות וחולצת או מתיבמת שאין כאן דבר לחוש לו. וכן אשת החרש וזקנה ועקרה הרי הן כשאר כל היבמות רצה חולץ רצה מייבם שזקנה ועקרה היתה להן שעת הכושר:

8

The following are not obligated to perform either chalitzah or yibbum: the wife of a saris chamah or the wife of an androgynous, the wife of a mentally incompetent person or the wife of a minor, an aylonit, or a woman forbidden [to her yavam] as one of the arayot.

[The rationale for these laws is as follows. Deuteronomy 25:6 states that yibbum was instituted:] "So that the name of [the deceased] not be obliterated within Israel."19 This excludes the wife of a saris chamah or the wife of an androgynous, for their names are "obliterated" by nature. Since they are inherently unfit to father children, they are considered to be a separate category.

[The verse continues:] "And the firstborn that she bears." This excludes an aylonit, who is, by nature, incapable of bearing a child.

It is written [ibid:5]: "The wife of the deceased...." This excludes the wife of a mentally incompetent person or the wife of a minor - for with regard to them, there is no concept of marriage at all.

[The verse continues:] "And he will take her as a wife." This excludes a woman forbidden [to her yavam] as one of the arayot, for she cannot be taken as a wife.20

ח

ואלו הן שהן פטורות מן החליצה ומן היבום אשת סריס חמה ואנדרוגינוס ואשת השוטה ואשת הקטן ואילונית ומי שהיא ערוה. שנאמר ולא ימחה שמו מישראל פרט לסריס חמה ואנדרוגינוס ששמם מחוי הואיל ואינן ראויין לילד מתחלת ברייתן הרי הן כמין בפני עצמו. והיה הבכור אשר תלד פרט לאילונית שאינה ראויה לילד מתחלת ברייתה. לא תהיה אשת המת פרט לאשת שוטה וקטן מפני שאין להם אישות כלל. ולקחה לו לאשה פרט לערוה שאין לו בת ליקוחין:

9

How is it possible for a woman to be forbidden [to her yavam] as one of the arayot?21 For example, [the yevamah] was the sister, the mother, or the daughter of [the yavam's] wife. Such a woman is not obligated to perform either chalitzah or yibbum at all and is under no obligation to [the yavam], as implied by the verse: "And he shall take her as a wife, thus performing yibbum." Only a woman who is fit to be married, and whose consecration [by the yavam] is binding is obligated to perform yibbum.

ט

כיצד יבמה שהיא ערוה על יבמה כגון שהיתה אחות אשתו או אמה או בתה הרי זו פטורה מן החליצה ומן היבום ואין לו עליה זיקה כלל שנאמר ולקחה לו לאשה ויבמה מי שראויה ללקוחין וקידושין תופסין בה היא זקוקה ליבם:

10

If the yevamah was forbidden to her yavam because of a negative commandment or a positive commandment, or she was one of the sh'niyot, she should perform chalitzah, but not yibbum.

Why is she obligated to perform chalitzah? Because she is fit to be married, and her consecration [by the yavam] would be binding.22 Therefore, she is under obligation to the yavam. And according to law, she should perform yibbum, for yibbum is a positive commandment, and whenever the observance of a positive commandment conflicts with the observance of a negative commandment, the positive commandment takes precedence.23 Nevertheless, our Sages decreed that neither woman with whom relations are prohibited by a negative commandment, nor sh'niyot24 should perform yibbum, lest [the yavam] engage in relations with her a second time. [At that time,] relations with her are forbidden, and there is no mitzvah, for the positive commandment [of yibbum] applies only with regard to the first time [the couple] engage in relations.

Therefore, if [the yavam] transgresses and engages in relations with a yevamah who is forbidden to him because of a negative commandment or because of a positive commandment, he acquires her [as his wife] in definitive manner and must divorce her with a get. Needless to say, [this ruling applies] with regard to a sh'niyah.25 [After the divorce, the yevamah] and all the other wives [of the deceased] are permitted to marry other men, for they have been released of their obligation.

י

היתה היבמה אסורה על יבמה איסור לאו או איסור עשה או שהיתה שנייה הרי זו חולצת ולא מתייבמת. ומפני מה צריכה חליצה מפני שיש בה לקוחין הואיל וקידושין תופסין בהן הרי הן זקוקות ליבם. ומן הדין היה שיתייבמו שהיבום מצות עשה וכ"מ שאתה מוצא עשה ול"ת יבא עשה וידחה את ל"ת. אבל חכמים גזרו שלא יתייבמו חייבי לאוין ולא שניות גזירה שמא יבוא עליה פעם שנייה והרי ביאתה אסורה ואין שם מצוה שאין מצות עשה אלא ביאה ראשונה בלבד לפיכך אם עבר ובעל יבמתו האסורה לו משום לאו או משום עשה וא"צ לומר שנייה ה"ז קנה קנין גמור ומוציאה בגט והיא וכל צרותיה מותרות לזר שהרי נפטרו:

11

When a yevamah has been widowed after her marriage [to the deceased] had been consummated, and a High Priest performs yibbum with her, the other wives [of the deceased] are not released from their obligation. [The rationale is that a positive commandment does not supersede a negative commandment and a positive commandment.26 [Therefore,] he does not acquire [the yevamah as a wife] in a definitive manner, and as such, another wife [of the deceased]27 is not permitted to marry another man until she performs chalitzah [herself].

יא

ויבמה שהיא אלמנה מן הנשואין ובא עליה כהן גדול לא נפטרה צרתה שאין עשה דוחה את ל"ת ועשה. והואיל ולא קנה מן התורה קנין גמור לא הותרה צרתה לזר עד שתחלוץ:

12

[The following principle applies when] a yevamah was forbidden to her [deceased] husband as one of the arayot - e.g., he transgressed or he erred and married his paternal sister, and she is now under obligation to his brother.28 She is not considered to be [the deceased's] wife, for his consecration of her is not binding. [As such,] she is neither obligated to perform yibbum nor chalitzah.

If [the deceased] had another wife, the other wife must perform either chalitzah or yibbum. If the woman who was forbidden to her [deceased] husband as one of the arayot is permitted to the yavam,29 and the yavam desires to marry her and also to perform yibbum with another wife [of the deceased], he has that option.30

יב

היתה היבמה ערוה על בעלה. כגון שעבר או טעה ולקח אחותו מאביו ונפלה לפני אחיו. אין זו אשתו שאין קידושין תופסין בה ואינה לא בת ייבום ולא בת חליצה. ואם היתה לה צרה חולצת [או] מתייבמת. ואם היתה זו שהיא ערוה על הבעל מותרת ליבם ורצה היבם לישא אותה וליבם צרתה הרשות בידו:

13

When a yevamah is forbidden to her husband because of a negative commandment or a positive commandment,31 or she is a sh'niyah with regard to him,32 but is not forbidden to the yavam for these reasons, she is permitted to perform yibbum. There is one exception - when the deceased remarried his divorcee after she had married another man. She should perform chalitzah and not yibbum.

Similarly, when there is a doubt whether a yevamah was forbidden to her [deceased] husband as one of the arayot, or33 there is a doubt whether she is forbidden to her yavam for that reason, she should perform chalitzah and not yibbum.

On this basis, [the following rules apply when] a man [attempted to] consecrate a woman, but there was a doubt regarding the status of the kiddushin, and afterwards, his brother, who had been married to the sister [of the woman he intended to consecrate], died. He should perform chalitzah and not yibbum with the wife [of the deceased].34 And because of the doubt, he must divorce his wife with a get.

Both women are forbidden to him: his yevamah because there is a doubt whether she is an ervah, and the woman he consecrated because there is a doubt whether her status is that of one related to a woman with whom he performed chalitzah, who is forbidden as a sh'niyah is, as explained above.35

יג

היתה היבמה אסורה על בעלה משום לאו או משום עשה או שהיתה שנייה לבעל ולא היתה אסורה על היבם מצד אלו הצדדים הרי זו מותרת ליבם. חוץ ממחזיר גרושתו משנשאת ומת שהיא חולצת ולא מתייבמת. וכן יבמה שהיא ספק ערוה על היבם או ספק ערוה על בעלה הרי זו חולצת ולא מתייבמת. לפיכך מי שקידש אשה בספק קידושין ואח"כ מת אחיו שהיה נושא אחותה ונפלה לו ליבום שהיא ספק אחות אשתו הרי זו חולצת ולא מתייבמת ומוציא את אשתו בגט מספק ושתיהן אסורות עליו יבמתו מפני שהיא ספק ערוה וארוסתו מפני שהיא ספק קרובת חלוצתו שהיא כשנייה כמו שבארנו:

14

[The following principle applies when a man's] brother dies [childless] leaving two wives: one forbidden to [the yavam] as an ervah,36 and one who is not forbidden in this manner. Just as the woman who is forbidden is not under the obligation to perform chalitzah or yibbum, so too, [the deceased's] other wives are not obligated.

This household is not under any obligation [to the yavam], as our Sages derived from [Deuteronomy 25:9]: "...Who did not build his brother's house": [Women from] a household from which he can take [any wife] he desires is under obligation [to the yavam]. But if he cannot "build" a portion of the household - i.e., he is forbidden to marry the woman - he should not "build" even the portion that is permitted to him.

Thus, [when one of the wives of the deceased] is forbidden to [the yavam] as an ervah, the other wife also remains forbidden to him as an ervah. [She is still forbidden as] his brother's wife, for she is not under any obligation at all to him.

יד

מי שמת אחיו והניח שתי נשים האחת אסורה עליו משום ערוה והשניה אינה ערוה. כשם שהערוה פטורה מן החליצה ומן היבום כך צרתה פטורה ולא נפלה לו זיקה כלל על בית זה. שנאמר אשר לא יבנה את בית אחיו בית שיש לו לקוחין באי זה מהן שירצה הוא שיש לו עליו זיקה. ובית שמקצתו אינו יכול לבנותו שהרי אין לו בה לקוחין אינו בונה אפילו מקצתו שהוא מותר ונמצאת צרת הערוה ערוה עליו משום אשת אחיו שהרי אין לו עליה זיקה:

15

Accordingly, [the following rules apply when] Reuven dies [childless], leaving two wives, one of whom is forbidden as an ervah to [his brother] Shimon, and both are fit to marry [his brother] Levi.37 [The wives of] this household are under no obligation at all to Shimon, and both are under obligation to Levi.

[The following rule applies if] Levi performed yibbum with the woman who was married [to Reuven] but who was not an ervah to Shimon, [Levi] had another wife, and then he died [childless], and both women fell before to Shimon. They are both free of the obligation to perform either chalitzah or yibbum with Shimon.38 [Levi's yevamah] is forbidden because she was married to the same man as was a woman forbidden [to Shimon] as an ervah, and the other wife is forbidden because she was married to the same man [as the yevamah].

This principle applies whenever a woman is married to the same man as a woman who was the other wife [of a woman forbidden to the yavam] and to any further extension of this principle.39 As long as a woman is under no obligation [to her yavam], she remains forbidden to him as his brother's wife.

טו

לפיכך ראובן שמת והניח שתי נשים האחת ערוה על שמעון ושתיהן ראויות ללוי אין לשמעון זיקה על בית זה. והרי שתיהן תחת זיקת לוי. ייבם לוי האחת מהן שהיא צרת ערוה של שמעון והיתה לו אשה אחרת ומת לוי ונפלו שתיהן לפני שמעון שתיהן פטורות מן החליצה ומן הייבום משמעון. האחת מפני שהיתה צרת ערוה. והשניה מפני שהיא צרתה. וכן הדין בצרת צרתה עד סוף העולם שכל אשה שאין לו עליה זיקה באיסור אשת אח עומדת לעולם:

16

Similarly, the wife of a brother who died before [his younger brother was born is forbidden to him]. She is under no obligation to him, as implied by [Deuteronomy 25:5]: "When brothers dwell together," interpreted to mean: when they live at the same time. She remains forbidden to him forever, and she frees all of her husband's other wives from an obligation to him.

טז

וכן אשת אחיו שלא היה בעולמו הואיל ואין לו עליה זיקה שנאמר כי ישבו אחים יחדיו עד שישבו שניהן בעולם הרי זו ערוה עליו לעולם משום אשת אח ופוטרת צרתה:

17

What is implied? Reuven died [childless], leaving a wife who fell before Shimon [his brother]. After Reuven died, whether before Shimon performed yibbum with Reuven's wife or afterwards, Levi [another brother] was born.

Reuven's wife remains forbidden to Levi as an ervah forever. Therefore, if Shimon dies [childless], and this woman and another woman [who was married to Shimon] fall before Levi, neither are obligated to perform chalitzah or yibbum.

יז

כיצד ראובן שמת והניח אשה ונפלה לפני שמעון ואחר שמת ראובן נולד לוי בין שנולד לוי קודם שייבם לה שמעון בין שנולד אחר שיבמה הרי אשת ראובן ערוה על לוי לעולם. לפיכך אם מת שמעון ונפלה זו וצרתה לפני לוי שתיהן פטורות מן החליצה ומן הייבום:

18

[Moreover,] if Shimon [merely] gave a ma'amar to his yevamah, Reuven's wife, and died before he consummated his relationship with her, Levi should perform chalitzah with [Shimon's] other wife, but not yibbum. [The rationale is] that a ma'amar does not establish a completely binding relationship with a yevamah, as we have explained.40

יח

עשה שמעון מאמר ביבמתו אשת ראובן ומת קודם שיכנוס אותה הרי לוי חולץ לצרתה ולא מייבם שאין המאמר קונה ביבמה קנין גמור כמו שבארנו:

19

When a woman willingly commits adultery while married to her husband, and [her act is observed by] witnesses [he is required to divorce her].41 If he died [childless] before he divorced her, and she fell before a yavam, she is not obligated to perform chalitzah or yibbum. Moreover, [her deceased husband's] other wives are also [not obligated to perform chalitzah or yibbum], as if she were forbidden to the yavam as an ervah. For just as impurity is mentioned with regard to the arayot,42 so too, that term is mentioned with regard to such a woman, as [Numbers 5:13] states: "And she became impure."43

When, however, the husband of a sotah dies [childless] before he has caused her to her drink the bitter waters,44 or if the woman must be divorced instead of drinking the bitter waters,45 she should perform chalitzah, but not yibbum.46 Similarly, if [her deceased husband] had another wife, that woman is permitted [to the yavam] and may perform chalitzah or yibbum.

יט

אשה שזינתה תחת בעלה ברצון ובעדים ומת קודם שיגרשנה ונפלה לפני יבם הרי היא פטורה מן החליצה ומן היבום. וכן צרתה כאילו היתה ערוה על היבם מפני שטומאה כתובה בה כעריות שנאמר והיא נטמאה. אבל סוטה שמת בעלה קודם שישקנה מי המרים או שאינה בת שתייה אלא בת גירושין הרי זו חולצת ולא מתייבמת ואם היתה לה צרה הרי צרתה מותרת וחולצת או מתייבמת:

20

Similar rules [apply] if two yevamot come from one household and one of them was a sh'niyah to the yavam, [forbidden to him because of] a negative commandment or a positive commandment, or an aylonit - another wife of [her deceased husband] is permitted [to the yavam] and may perform chalitzah or yibbum.

[Different rules apply, however, when a yavam] performed chalitzah with his yevamah, and then the sister, the mother, or another [close relative] of the woman with whom he performed chalitzah married another one of his brothers, that brother has another wife, and [the brother] dies [childless].47 Just as the close relative of the woman with whom he performed chalitzah is forbidden to him, so too, is the other wife forbidden to him. Their status is like sh'niyot, and they should perform chalitzah, but not yibbum.

Why did the Sages forbid [marriage] to a close relative of a woman with whom one performed chalitzah? Because it is difficult to distinguish her from a woman married to the same man as a woman with whom one performed chalitzah.48

כ

וכן שתי יבמות הבאות מבית אחד שהיתה האחת מהן שניה על היבם או מחייבי לאוין או מחייבי עשה או אילונית הרי צרתה מותרת וחולצת או מתייבמת. אבל החולץ ליבמתו והלכה אחות חלוצתו או אמה וכיוצא בהן ונשאת לאחיו ולו אשה אחרת ומת ונפלו שתיהן לפניו. כשם שקרובת חלוצתו אסורה עליו כך צרתה אסורה והרי שתיהן כשניות לו וחולצות ולא מתייבמות. ומפני מה אסרו צרת קרובת חלוצתו מפני שמתחלפת בצרת חלוצתו:

21

When two yevamot come from one household and one of them was forbidden to the yavam as an ervah, but she was also an aylonit, the other wife of [the deceased husband] is permitted [to the yavam] and may perform chalitzah or yibbum. [The rationale is that] since the laws of yibbum and chalitzah do not apply with regard to an aylonit, it is as if she did not exist, and the obligation [of yibbum] falls on the other wife alone.

Similarly, if [the deceased] brother divorced the woman forbidden as an ervah or she dissolved their marriage through] mi'un before he died, or she died during the lifetime of the deceased brother, and then he died, his other wife is permitted and should perform either chalitzah or yibbum. We do not say that since she was married to the same man as an ervah once, she remains forbidden forever. For a woman married to the same man as an ervah does not become forbidden [to the yavam] unless they were [both married to the same man at the time of his death, when] the obligation of yibbum takes effect.

כא

שתי יבמות הבאות מבית אחד שהאחת מהן ערוה על היבם והרי הערוה אילונית צרתה מותרת וחולצת או מתיבמת. הואיל והאילונית אינה בת יבום וחליצה הרי זו כמו שאינה. ונפלה זיקתו על צרתה בלבד. וכן אם גירש אחיו את הערוה או מיאנה בו קודם שימות. או שמתה בחיי בעלה ואח"כ מת אחיו הרי צרתה מותרת וחולצת או מתייבמת ואין אומרין הואיל ונעשת צרה לערוה שעה אחת תאסר לעולם שאין הצרה אסורה עד שתהיה צרת ערוה בשעת נפילה ליבום:

22

[In the situation mentioned in Halachah 14,] if there was a doubt regarding the status of the kiddushin of [the woman] who was forbidden to the yavam as an ervah or there was a doubt that she was divorced, the other wife [of the deceased brother] should perform chalitzah, but not yibbum.49

[The same ruling applies if the woman who was forbidden] was a minor who is fit to absolve her marriage through mi'un, if she did not dissolve her marriage [to the deceased] brother during his lifetime, even though she did dissolve her obligation to] the yavam through mi'un,50 another woman married to her husband must perform chalitzah; she may not perform yibbum.

כב

היתה זו שהיא ערוה על היבם מקודשת לאחיו שמת בספק או מגורשת ממנו בספק. או שהיתה קטנה הראויה למאן ולא מיאנה באחיו בחייו אע"פ שמיאנה ביבם צרתה חולצת ולא מתייבמת:

23

[In the situation mentioned in Halachah 14,] if the other woman [married to the deceased brother] married another man, and then it was discovered that [the woman forbidden to the yavam as] an ervah was an aylonit,51 the woman who married must be released by both her [second] husband and her yavam. Her [second] husband must divorce her with a get, while her yavam must perform chalitzah with her. [In this way,] she is permitted to marry another man.

כג

הלכה צרת ערוה ונשאת לאחר ואח"כ נמצאת הערוה אילונית. תצא הצרה מבעלה ומיבמה וצריכה גט מבעלה וחליצה מיבמה כדי להתירה לשוק:

24

[In the above situation], if the yavam performed yibbum with the other wife of the deceased, because he thought that the woman forbidden to him as an ervah was an aylonit, and it was discovered that she was not an aylonit, the yavam must divorce [the woman with whom he performed yibbum] with a get.52 Any child [she bears him] is illegitimate.53

כד

יבם היבם הצרה מפני שדמו שהערוה אילונית ונמצאת הערוה שאינה אילונית תצא מיבמה בגט והולד ממזר:

25

[In the following situation, chalitzah and not yibbum is required.] There were three brothers. Two were married to two sisters, and one was married to a woman who did not share a family connection. If the brother married to the woman who was not related died [childless], and then one of the brothers married to one of the sisters died [childless], [the remaining brother] should perform chalitzah but not yibbum, with the woman who did not share a family connection54. [The rationale is that] she was obligated to the second brother, and his other wife was the sister [of the surviving yavam's] wife.55

Moreover, even if one of the brothers who married one of the sisters divorced his wife after the brother married to the woman who was not related died [childless], and then he himself dies [childless], [the remaining brother] should perform chalitzah, but not yibbum, with the woman who did not share a family connection. Since there was even one moment when this woman was obligated to the second brother while his other wife was the sister [of the surviving yavam's] wife [this prohibition was enforced].56 For if [he] were [allowed to] perform yibbum with her, it is possible that [in such a situation, a brother] might perform yibbum with such a woman even when the second brother who died did not divorce his wife.

כה

שלשה אחין. שנים מהן נשואין שתי אחיות. ואחד מהן נשוי נכרית. מת הנשוי נכרית ואח"כ מת אחד מבעלי אחיות. הרי הנכרית חולצת ולא מתייבמת מפני שהיא צרת אחות אשתו בזיקת אחיו שמת אחרון. ולא עוד אלא אפילו גירש אחד מבעלי אחיות את אשתו אחר שמת הנשוי נכרית ומת המגרש הרי הנכרית חולצת ולא מתייבמת הואיל ונעשית צרת אחות אשתו בזיקה שעה אחת. שאם תתיבם שמא יבא לייבם אותה ואפילו לא גירש זה שמת אחרון את אשתו:

26

Why was this decree not applied when a marriage was involved? For example, if [a brother is married to two women,] one of them is forbidden [to his brother] as an ervah and one is not. If he divorces the wife who is forbidden and then dies childless, [the surviving brother] may perform yibbum with the wife [of the deceased brother], as we have explained.57

[The distinction is that] the prohibition against [performing yibbum] with a wife [of one's deceased brother] when one of his wives is forbidden [to the yavam] as ervah is known by all.58 Thus, if [the deceased brother] did not divorce the woman forbidden [to the yavam], no one would allow him [to perform yibbum with his brother's] other wife. The prohibition against [performing yibbum with] a woman who was obligated to [a man whose] other wife is forbidden [to the yavam] is not known to all, and it is possible that [in such a situation, a brother] might be allowed to [perform yibbum with] such a woman even when [the second brother who died] did not divorce the forbidden woman.

כו

ומפני מה לא גזרו דבר זה בנישואין שהרי צרת ערוה בנישואין אם גירש את הערוה ומת צרתה מותרת לייבם כמו שבארנו. מפני שאיסור צרת הערוה בנישואין ידוע לכל ואינן באין להתיר הצרה אם לא גירש הערוה. ואיסור צרת ערוה בזיקה אינה ידוע לכל ובאין להתיר הצרה ואפילו לא נתגרשה הערוה:

27

[In the following situation, chalitzah and not yibbum is required.] There were three brothers, all married to women who did not share any family connection. One of the brothers died [childless]. Another gave his yevamah a ma'amar, but died [childless] before he consummated his marriage to her. Thus, this woman and the wife of the second brother fell before the third brother.

These women should perform chalitzah, but not yibbum, because the woman who was given the ma'amar has two obligations for yibbum incumbent on her.59 As such, it is as if she had been married to two men. Our Sages interpreted the phrase [Deuteronomy 25:5] "the wife of the deceased," as a restriction. [One may perform yibbum with the wife of one deceased man,] but not [the wife of] two deceased men.60

Therefore, whenever a woman has two obligations for yibbum incumbent on her, she should perform chalitzah, but not yibbum. The same applies to the woman married to [the second brother who died]. The prohibition [against performing yibbum with these women] is Rabbinic in origin.61

כז

ג' אחין נשואין שלש נשים נכריות. מת אחד מהן ועשה השני מאמר ביבמתו ומת קודם שיכנוס ונפלו שתיהן לפני היבם הרי אלו חולצות ולא מתייבמות. מפני שבעלת המאמר עליה זיקת שני יבמין. ונמצאת כאילו היא אשת שני מתים ודרשו חכמים ואמרו אשת המת ולא אשת שני מתים. לפיכך כל אשה שעליה זיקת שני יבמין חולצת ולא מתייבמת וכן צרתה ואיסורן מדברי סופרים:

28

Why does [the yavam] not merely perform chalitzah with the woman who was given the ma'amar and is thus obligated to perform yibbum because of two men, and then perform yibbum with the [first] wife of [the deceased brother]? This is a decree instituted so that people will not say that when there are two yevamot coming from one household, one should perform chalitzah and the other yibbum.62 For this reason, [the Sages] forbade [performing yibbum with the deceased's first] wife.

כח

ומפני מה לא יחלוץ לבעלת המאמר שעליה זיקת שני יבמין וייבם צרתה. גזרה שלא יאמרו שתי יבמות הבאות מבית אחד אחת חולצת ואחת מתייבמת ולפיכך אסרו אף צרתה:

29

[In the above instance, if the second brother] gave his yevamah a ma'amar and then gave her a get [to nullify] the ma'amar, [different rules apply] if he dies. [The woman] becomes permitted [to the third brother], for the ma'amar that caused her to be forbidden was nullified. He may perform either chalitzah or yibbum with her.63

כט

עשה מאמר ביבמתו ונתן גט למאמרו ומת חזרה להיתרה שהמאמר שאסרה הרי בטלו ורצה חולץ רצה מייבם:

30

[In the following situation, chalitzah and not yibbum is required. A yavam] who is below the age of majority, [but more than] nine years and one day old, enters into relations with his yevamah and dies before he attains majority. She then becomes obligated for yibbum to the minor's older brother for a second time. She should perform chalitzah, but not yibbum. As we have explained,64 relations in which a minor engages are considered equivalent to a ma'amar given by [a brother] past majority. Hence, the woman has two obligations for yibbum incumbent on her.

ל

בן תשע שנים ויום אחד שבא על יבמתו ומת כשהוא קטן ונפלה פעם שנייה לפני אחיו הגדול הרי זו חולצת ולא מתייבמת. שביאת בן תשע שנים ויום אחד כמאמר מן הגדול כמו שבארנו ונמצא עליה זיקת שני יבמין:

31

[The following rule applies when] a woman who was half [a Canaanite] maid-servant and half a freed woman65 was consecrated by Reuven. She was then given her freedom and was consecrated by [Reuven's brother,] Shimon. Afterwards, both [brothers] died. Levi, [a third brother, may] perform yibbum with [this woman]; she is not considered to be "the wife of two deceased men." For if her consecration by Reuven is effective, her consecration by Shimon is of no consequence.66 And if her consecration by Shimon is effective, her consecration by Reuven is of no consequence.

לא

מי שחציה שפחה וחציה בת חורין שנתקדשה לראובן ונשתחררה וחזרה ונתקדשה לשמעון ומתו שניהם מתייבמת ללוי ואינה אשת שני מתים. אם קידושי ראובן קידושין אין קידושי שמעון כלום. ואם קידושי שמעון קידושין אין קידושי ראובן כלום: