Kelim, Chapter Sixteen, Mishnah Two

 

Introduction

Our mishnah deals with the completion of the manufacturing of various types of baskets.

 

Mishnah Two

1)      Wooden baskets [become susceptible to impurity] as soon as their rims are rounded off and their rough ends are smoothed off.

2)      But those that are made of palm-branches [become susceptible to impurity] even though their ends were not smoothed off on the inside, since they are allowed to remain in this condition.

3)      A basket [of reed-grass becomes susceptible to impurity] as soon as its rim is rounded off, its rough ends are smoothed off, and its hanger is finished.

4)      A wicker basket flasks or for cups [is susceptible to impurity] even if the rough ends were not smoothed off on the inside, since these are allowed to remain in this condition.

 

Explanation

Section one: Wooden baskets are considered to be completed once the loose ends around the rim of the basket are tied together and the ends of pieces of wood are cut off, both on the rim and inside. From this point on the basket is susceptible to impurity.

Section two: Baskets made of palm-branches do not need for their ends to be cut off on the insides of the basket, because they are used even without this step being performed. Again, the principle is straightforward—a vessel is considered to be completed once it is in a state in which people will typically use it.

Section three: The basket made of reed grass referred to here has a hanger by which it can be hung. Since this hanger is necessary for its normal functioning, it is not susceptible until the hanger is completed. Other than that, the other steps needed for wooden vessels also apply.

Section four: Evidently, wicker baskets used to hold flasks or cups are used in a state similar to the palm-branch baskets mentioned in section two. Therefore, they too do not need their inside parts to be finished off for them to be susceptible.

 

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