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Mishnayos Shevuos Perek 8 Mishnah 4

שבועות פרק ח׳ משנה ד׳


If the owner of an ox said to someone in the marketplace, i.e., a stranger who was not a bailee: Where is my ox that you stole? And the accused says: I did not steal it, and then witnesses testify that the accused did steal it, he pays the double payment. If he slaughtered or sold it, he pays the fourfold or fivefold payment. If the accused saw witnesses that were approaching to testify against him, and at that point he said: I admit that I stole the animal but I did not slaughter or sell it, he pays only the principal.

אָמַר לְאֶחָד בַּשּׁוּק הֵיכָן שׁוֹרִי שֶׁגָּנַבְתָּ, וְהוּא אוֹמֵר לֹא גָנַבְתִּי, וְהָעֵדִים מְעִידִים אוֹתוֹ שֶׁגְּנָבוֹ, מְשַׁלֵּם תַּשְׁלוּמֵי כֶפֶל. טָבַח וּמָכַר, מְשַׁלֵּם תַּשְׁלוּמֵי אַרְבָּעָה וַחֲמִשָּׁה. רָאָה עֵדִים שֶׁמְּמַשְׁמְשִׁין וּבָאִין, אָמַר גָּנַבְתִּי אֲבָל לֹא טָבַחְתִּי וְלֹא מָכָרְתִּי, אֵינוֹ מְשַׁלֵּם אֶלָּא קֶרֶן:


אמר לאחד מן השוק – here we do not have the reading “I impose an oath upon you.” Because without an oath, he would be liable for double payment. For this one is an actual thief, and regarding a thief, it is written (Exodus 22:6): “[if the thief is caught,] he shall pay double,” and he does not need an oath.

עדים שממשמשין ובאין – it is teaching us something remarkable – for even though on account of fright of the witnesses, he admits, even so, the admission is a benefit and he is exempted from the double payment. And since there is no double payment, he is exempt even from the slaughtering that he denied that and the witnesses came that he had stolen, and slaughtered or sold. For wherever there is no double payment, there is no liability for slaughtering, for the All-Merciful mentioned “four-fold payment or five-fold payment” (see Exodus 21:37: “When a man steals an ox or a sheep, and slaughters it or sells it, he shall pay five oxen for the ox, and four sheep for the sheep.”), and not “three-fold payment for four-fold payment,” and because there is not double-payment, less than this is one.

אמר לאחד מן השוק וכו׳ הכא לא גרסינן משביעך אני, דהא בלא שבועה מיחייב כפל. שזה גנב ממש הוא, ובגנב כתיב ישלם שנים, ואין צריך שבועה:

עדים שממשמשין ובאין. רבותא אשמעינן, דאע״ג דמחמת ביעתותא דעדים מודה, אפ״ה מהניא הודאה ונפטר מן הכפל. וכיון דאין כפל, פטור אף מן הטביחה שכפר בה ובאו עדים שגנב וטבח ומכר, דכל היכא דליכא כפל ליכא חיוב טביחה, דתשלומי ארבעה וחמשה אמר רחמנא, ולא תשלומי שלשה וארבעה, וכיון דכפל ליכא, בציר ליה חד: