Previous Folio / Baba Bathra Contents / Tractate List / Navigate Site

Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Baba Bathra

Folio 85a

A man's vessel acquires for him ownership1  everywhere2  except in reshuth harabbim. But both R. Johanan and R. Simeon b. Lakish have stated: Even in reshuth harabbim. R. Papa said: There is no dispute [at all] between them. The former3  speak of reshuth harabbim; the latter,4  of an alley. Then why do they call it public territory?5  — Because it is not private territory.6  This7  may also be proved by logical deduction; for R. Abbahu said in the name of R. Johanan: A man's vessel acquires ownership for him wherever he is permitted to set it down. From this it is to be deduced that [only where] he is permitted [to set it down],8  he does [acquire ownership]; [but where] he is not permitted,9  [he does] not.

Come and hear: Four10  [different] laws [are applicable] to sales.11  Before the measure12  is filled, [the contents remain in the possession] of the seller.13  When the measure is filled, [the contents pass over into the possession] of the buyer.14  These laws apply to a measure which belonged to neither of them,15  but if the measure was [the property] of one of them, he [whose measure it is] acquires successive possession of every single unit of the quantity as soon as it is put in.16  These laws, [furthermore], apply to a reshuth harabbim and to a courtyard which belongs to neither of them,17  but [if the purchase was] on the premises of the seller, [the buyer] does not acquire possession18  until he has lifted19  it or has removed it from the seller's premises.20  [If the purchase was] on the premises of the buyer, he acquires possession as soon as the seller has consented [to the terms of the sale].21  [If the purchase was] on the premises of one with whom it had been deposited [by the seller]. possession cannot be acquired [by the buyer] until [the owner of the premises] has consented22  [to allow to the buyer a portion of his premises on which to effect acquisition of ownership], or until [the buyer] had hired the place it occupies. At any rate, it is taught here [that possession by means of one's vessel may be acquired] in reshuth harabbim and in a courtyard which belongs to neither of them.

To Part b

Original footnotes renumbered. See Structure of the Talmud Files
  1. Of an object bought, if the price had been previously agreed upon.
  2. Even if the vessel is on the premises of the seller; provided the latter explicitly said; 'let your vessel acquire possession for you'.
  3. Rab and Samuel.
  4. R. Johanan and Resh Lakish.
  5. Heb. reshuth harabbim. v. p. 307, n. 8.
  6. Heb. reshuth ha-yahid.
  7. R. Papa's reconciliation of the apparent differences.
  8. E.g., in an alley, a courtyard belonging to buyer and seller, or the premises of the seller if he granted permission. V. n. 3.
  9. E.g.. in reshuth harabbim.
  10. Four: (i) The case when the measure was borrowed; (ii) when it belonged to one of the parties to the sale. (Both these cases speak of reshuth harabbim, etc.) (iii) When the purchase was on the premises of the buyer and (iv) on the premises of the seller or, of him with whom it has been deposited.
  11. Lit., 'sellers'.
  12. Which has been borrowed.
  13. The measure is assumed to have been lent to him (by the middleman. v. p. 355f.) for the purpose of measuring out his merchandise. It remains, therefore, in his possession until he completes the measuring.
  14. Not only the contents, but also the measure remains in the buyer's possession until he has emptied the purchase into his own vessel or transferred it to his premises. A measure is assumed to be lent to the buyer for this purpose, and to the seller for measuring only. (Cf. previous note.)
  15. V. n. 13.
  16. Lit., 'he acquires first, first'.
  17. And no permission for the purpose was obtained from the owner of the yard.
  18. Even if the measure is his own.
  19. V. Glos. s.v. Hagbahah.
  20. Into his own, into an alley. or the like.
  21. Though no measuring of the commodity has yet taken place.
  22. At the request of the seller.
Tractate List / Glossary / / Bible Reference

Baba Bathra 85b

Does not this mean an actual reshuth harabbim?1  — No; [it means] an alley. But has it not been treated as being in a similar category to that of a courtyard which belongs to neither of them?2  — The [phrase], 'courtyard which belongs to neither of them', also signifies that [the court] is neither in the entire ownership of the one nor in the entire ownership of the other; but in the joint ownership of the two.

R. Shesheth inquired of R. Huna: [If] the buyer's vessel stands on the premises of the seller, does the buyer, [thereby] acquire possession [of a purchase placed in it] or not?3  — He replied unto him: You have learned this [in the following]:4  [If the husband] has thrown it [a get]5  into [his wife's] lap or into her work-basket,6  she is divorced.7  R. Nahman said unto him: Why do you bring an answer from this which has been refuted by a hundred arguments to one?8  For Rab Judah said in the name of Samuel: This [law9  applies only to the case] where the work-basket was hanging upon her.10  And Resh Lakish said:11  Fastened [to], though not hanging upon her.12  R. Adda b. Ahaba said:13  When the basket was standing between her thighs.14  R. Mesharsheya, the son of R. Ammi, said:15  When her husband was a seller of women's work-baskets.16  R. Johanan said:15  The place [occupied by] her lap, [as well as] the place [occupied by] her work-basket, is her property. Raba said:15  R. Johanan's reason is because a man does not mind [conceding to his wife] either the place [occupied by] her lap17  or the place [taken up by] her work-basket. But, [concluded R. Nahman], bring your answer from this: [It has been taught18  that if the purchase was] on the premises of the seller, [the buyer] does not acquire possession until he has lifted it or has removed it from the seller's premises. Does not this [apply to the case when the purchase was] in the buyer's vessel?19  — No; in the seller's vessel. But now, since the first clause [deals with a case where the purchase is] in the seller's vessel, the final clause also [must deal with a purchase] in the seller's vessel, [how then can you] explain [this] final clause? [It reads:] [If the purchase was] on the premises of the buyer, he acquires possession as soon as the seller has consented [to the terms of the sale].20  Now, if [the purchase was, as you assert], in the seller's vessel, why does the buyer acquire possession? — The final clause deals with a case when the vessel belongs to the buyer. And how [do you arrive at such] a definite decision? — It is usual that at the seller's, the vessels of the seller are likely to be used; at the buyer's, the vessels of the buyer are likely to be used.

Raba said come and hear: [It has been taught:]21  [If] he has pulled his22  ass drivers [who pulled with them their asses], or his22  labourers and has [thus] brought them into his house [while the loads24  remained on their backs], whether the price was fixed before the measuring, or the measuring took place before the price was fixed, both25  may withdraw from the sale.26

- To Next Folio -

Original footnotes renumbered. See Structure of the Talmud Files
  1. How, then, could R. Samuel, and R. Abbahu in the name of R. Johanan, state that one's vessel cannot acquire ownership in reshuth harabbim?
  2. But to a third party; while an alley is regarded as the territory of any buyer and seller who happen to be there.
  3. Cf. B.M. 67b; A.Z. 71b.
  4. Git. 77a.
  5. 'Bill of divorce'.
  6. [H] or [H], women's work-basket.
  7. As if it had been given into her own hand, though the basket may stand, (so it is assumed now), on the premises of the husband. Similarly, in the case of commercial transactions, when the buyer's vessel is on the premises of the seller, it acquires possession for him.
  8. Lit., 'they beat it a hundred measures for one measure'. [H] 'ukla, is one of the smaller measures of capacity and standards of weight.
  9. That the basket is the means whereby the woman acquires possession of the get.
  10. Git. 78a.
  11. Git. loc. cit.
  12. Even though the basket stands on the ground.
  13. Git. loc. cit.
  14. On the ground. In this case, the spot on which the basket rests is regarded as her property, allotted to her by her husband up to the moment of the consummation of the divorce.
  15. Git. loc. cit..
  16. The husband, therefore, does not object to her possession of the ground on which her basket stands.
  17. When her robe trails on the ground.
  18. Supra 85a.
  19. Which proves that the question. whether the buyer's vessel on the premises of the seller can serve as a means of acquiring possession, is to be answered in the negative.
  20. Supra loc. cit.
  21. A.Z. 72a.,
  22. I.e., the seller's. Others change the pronominal suffix of [H] and of [H] into final Nun, 'ass drivers and labourers'. (V. Tosaf. s.v. [H] a.l.).
  23. V. n. 3.
  24. Loads of, e.g., produce.
  25. Buyer and seller.
  26. Two conditions are required: Fixing the price and measuring out into the buyer's vessels. Fixing the price alone while the produce is still on the men's or asses' backs is of no avail, because this cannot take the place of meshikah nor that of the 'buyer's territory'. The 'pulling' of the men who carry the produce does not take the place of the 'pulling' of the produce itself. Measuring out into the buyer's vessel or territory, or even actual meshikah, is of no avail before the price has been agreed upon, because, before that has been done, neither seller nor buyer agree definitely to the sale or purchase. V. n. 10.
Tractate List / Glossary / / Bible Reference