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Eighteen Treatises from the Mishna, by D. A. Sola and M. J. Raphall, [1843], at


§ 1. Fifteen classes of women release themselves, their rivals, 1 and the rivals of these, ad infinitum, from the obligation of Chalitzah and Yeboom; these are [when the widow of the deceased is], (1) the [illegitimate] daughter of the brother, or (2) her daughter, or (3) the daughter of his [illegitimate] son, or (4) his wife's daughter, or (5) her son's daughter, or (6) her daughter's daughter, or (7) his mother-in-law, or (8) the mother of his mother-in-law, or (9) the mother of his father-in-law, or (10) his uterine or maternal sister, or (11) his mother's sister, or (12) his wife's sister, or (13) the widow of his uterine or maternal brother, or (14) the widow of a brother who had not been contemporary with him, 2 or (15) his daughter-in-law. 3 All these release their rivals, and the rivals of these, ad infinitum, from the obligation of Chalitzah and Yeboom. If, however, any of these had died, or refused her consent, 4 or had been divorced, or is unfit for procreation, 5 their rivals may be married by Yeboom; yet, refusal of consent, or of unfitness [to procreate], cannot be applied in respect to his mother-in-law, or the mother of his father-in-law.

§ 2. How is this release of rivals [by the mentioned classes of women] to be understood? When a person's daughter, or one of the mentioned forbidden degrees [of intermarriage] was married to

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his brother, who at his decease [without issue] left another wife besides her, then, even as the daughter is released [as he may not marry her], thus also is her rival released. If such a rival of the daughter should marry the second [or other] brother, who at his decease left another wife besides her, then, even as the rival of his daughter is released [as he may not marry the former rival of his daughter], thus does the rival of that rival become also released, and thus in the same manner even if there should be a hundred [brothers]. How is it to be understood that when these have died, it is permitted to marry their rivals by Yeboom? If his daughter, or one of the mentioned degrees prohibited to intermarry, was married to his brother, who had another wife besides, and his daughter had died, or had been divorced before the decease of his brother [to whom she had been married], then is he permitted to marry her by Yeboom. If any of these relatives had been qualified to refuse her consent, and did not refuse, her rival must perform the ceremony of Chalitzah, but cannot be married to her brother-in-law by Yeboom.

§ 3. In the case of the [hereafter to be mentioned] six more rigidly prohibited degrees of relationship, in which the women may be married to others only [viz. to strangers and not to the brothers], it is permitted to him to marry their rivals, after the decease of their husband; viz. his mother's, his father's wife's, his father's sister's, of a sister of father's side, of the wife of his father's brother, and of the wife of his brother by father's side.

§ 4. Beth Shammai permit brothers to marry [by Yeboom] the rivals of women [who are in forbidden degrees of relationship to them]; but Beth Hillel prohibit it. If such had performed the ceremony of Chalitzah, they are disqualified according to Beth Shammai to marry a priest; but Beth Hillel declare them qualified. If the brother-in-law had married any of them [by Yeboom], Beth Shammai permit them, in case they had again become widows, to marry a Cohen; but Beth Hillel prohibit it: and although one school prohibits what the other permits, and one declares as an invalid marriage that which by the other is considered a valid one, yet the disciples of either school did not refrain from intermarrying with each other; and also in respect to those laws of clean and unclean things, in which they differ in opinion, they did not refuse to lend each other vessels to be used for purposes which both schools considered as clean and lawful to be used. 6


201:1 By this appellation, the Mishna designates the several wives of one man, who are called ‏צרות‎ [i.e. troubles, adversaries, or rivals], to each other, inasmuch as Kimchi observes in his Commentary [to 1 Sam. i. 6, where this word occurs], they are most often sources of trouble, jealousy, and vexation to each other.

201:2 This will be explained in the next chapter.

201:3 Namely, the widow of his son, who subsequently had married his [deceased] brother.

201:4 A girl betrothed in her infancy may afterwards refuse to ratify the contract on becoming of age, when she objects to the husband to whom she had been betrothed by her parents, or brothers; see further, chap. XIII. of this Treatise.

201:5 The ‏אילונית‎, by which term the Mishna describes a female whose voice is like that of a man, and whose formation differs in other respects from persons of her sex.

202:6 And with respect to those about which they differed, they used to give each other notice.—Bartenora.

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