Maaser Sheni, Chapter Three, Mishnah Thirteen

 

Introduction

This mishnah is a continuation of yesterday’s mishnah. Here we discuss what happens if after corking the jars the owner wishes to change their status. For instance, he decides that instead of selling the jars with the wine he wants to sell the wine and lend the jars. Or he decides that he wants to give terumah from one jar for the other, instead of giving from each and every jar. Does just uncorking the jar cause it to revert to its previous status?

 

Mishnah Thirteen

1)      Bet Shammai says: the jars must be opened and emptied into the wine-press.  

a)      Bet Hillel says: they must be opened but need not be emptied.

2)      When does this apply? In a place where they are usually sold closed, but in a place where they are usually sold open, the jar does not revert to hullin.  

3)      If, however, he wishes to be stringent upon himself and to sell [only] by measure, the jar reverts hullin.  

4)      Rabbi Shimon says: also when one says to his friend, “This jar [of wine] I am selling to you from its jar, the jar reverts to hullin.

 

Explanation

Section one: According to Bet Shammai, in order for the wine to revert to its previous status, he needs to open the jars and pour the wine back into the wine-press. If he does this, then he can put the wine back into the jar and then sell the wine and not the jars. In this way, the jars will not be maaser sheni.

Bet Hillel is more lenient and says that all he has to do is just open the jars up again. He need not empty them into the wine-press. Now he can sell the wine and just lend out the jars, and thereby prevent the jars from becoming maaser sheni.

Section two: The leniency of Bet Hillel applies only if jars of wine are normally sold closed in that place. In such a place opening the jars will effect a change in their status. However, if jars of wine are normally sold open, the jar does not become hullin, non-sacred. If the jar had been maaser sheni, it remains maaser sheni.

Section three: There is one way that the jar can revert to hullin. If the seller opens the jar and decides to sell it by measure, then the jar won’t be sold with the wine and the jar becomes hullin. He will not be able to sell the whole jar of wine at one time, but just pour out wine into other people’s vessels.

Section four: Rabbi Shimon provides another way for the jar to revert to being hullin. If the seller specifically says to the buyer that he is selling just the wine, then the buyer can use the jar and give it back to him when he is done with it. In this case the jar is not maaser sheni.   

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