TalmuDigest

For the week ending 4 October 2008 / 5 Tishri 5769

Gittin 86 - 90

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
The Color of HeavenArtscroll
  • Three types of get which are invalid for marriage but have some validity if the woman marries
  • Rabbi Elazar's position on the role of witnesses signing on a get and other documents
  • The mixed up get and the multipurpose one
  • Adjoining gittin with signatures below running in opposite directions
  • When the signature of the witnesses is on a second page or not at the end of the get
  • How witnesses sign their names and the use of family names for husband and wife
  • The idol worshipping kings of Israel who brought about destruction of the Land
  • The one good deed of idol-worshipping King Hoshea ben Aleh
  • Divine timing of Babylonian exile
  • Validity of a coerced get
  • The force of rumors regarding marriage or divorce
  • A woman who claims her husband divorced her
  • What is the justification for divorce

Born Out of Wedlock

What is the status of a Jewish child born out of wedlock?

Contrary to the gentile definition of such a child as a bastard, the Torah does not consider such a child a mamzer unless its parents were forbidden in relations punishable by death or extirpation.

Nevertheless, we do find some consideration for avoiding suspicion of fathering a child out of wedlock.

Should a man write a get to his wife but delay delivering it to her for an extended period of time, he can no longer make use of this "old get" for the purpose of divorce. This ruling of Beit Hillel in our mishna is based on the fear that the wife will conceive a child from her husband during the interim and it will then appear to people that this took place when they were no longer married as mistakenly indicated by the date of the get.

Rashi explains that despite the fact that the child born out of wedlock is not a mamzer and has no halachic limitations on whom he can marry, such status is nevertheless considered as being flawed because it is the product of a forbidden premarital relationship.

  • Gittin 86a

What the Sages Say

"Whoever divorces his first wife even the altar sheds tears for him."

  • Rabbi Elazar - Gittin 90b

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