Nedarim, Chapter Ten, Mishnah Three

 

Introduction

This mishnah teaches that while a full husband cannot annul vows his wife made before their marriage, a betrothed husband who annuls her vows jointly with her father has the ability to do so.

 

Mishnah Three

If one vowed as a betrothed woman, and then was divorced on that day and betrothed [again] on the same day, even a hundred times, her father and last betrothed husband can annul her vows.

This is the general rule: as long as she has not passed out into her own control for even one hour, her father and last husband can annul her vows.

 

Explanation

If a woman takes a vow while she is betrothed and then on the same day is divorced and betrothed again to another man, the last husband and her father can still annul her vows.  This all must occur on the same day, because as we shall learn in mishnah 8 and as is stated clearly in Numbers 30, the woman’s vows must be annulled that very day.  The mishnah is teaching that although she vowed while betrothed to another man, the last betrothed husband may annul her previous vows because her father has continuously had the right to annul her vows. As is stated in the general rule at the end of the mishnah, should she be fully married or reach majority age, even for one hour and thereby leave her father’s control, her husband will not be able to annul her earlier vows. 

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