Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Shevuot/Chapter 1/4

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Introduction[edit]

Hebrew Text[edit]

על שאין בה ידיעה לא בתחילה, ולא בסוף –
שעירי רגלים ושעירי ראשי חודשים מכפרין; דברי רבי יהודה.
רבי שמעון אומר: שעירי רגלים מכפרין, אבל לא שעירי ראשי חודשים;
ועל מה שעירי ראשי חודשים מכפרין? על טהור שאכל טמא.
רבי מאיר אומר: כל השעירים כפרתן שווה, על טומאת מקדש וקודשיו.
שהיה רבי שמעון אומר:
שעירי ראשי חודשים מכפרין על טהור שאכל טמא,
ושל רגלים מכפרין על שאין בה ידיעה לא בתחילה ולא בסוף;
ושל יום הכיפורים מכפרין על שאין בה ידיעה בתחילה, אבל יש בה ידיעה בסוף.
אמרו לו: מה הן שיקרבו זה בזה.
אמר להן: יקרבו.
אמרו לו: הואיל ואין כפרתן שווה, היאך הן קרבין.
אמר להן: כולם באים לכפר על טומאת מקדש וקודשיו.

English Translation[edit]

For [a sin while impure] that has no recognition either at the beginning or at the end –
the he-goats of the Pilgrimage Festivals and the he-goats of the New Months atone; these are the words of Rabbi Yehudah.
Rabbi Shimon says: The he-goats of the Pilgrimage Festivals atone [for it], but not the he-goats of the Pilgrimage Festivals.
And for what do the he-goats of the New Months atone? For a pure person who ate an impure [food] item.
Rabi Meir says: All the he-goats have equivalent atonements, for the impurity of the Temple and its sacred objects.
For Rabbi Shimon would say:
The he-goats of the New Months atone for a pure person that ate an impure [food] item,
and those of the Pilgrimage Festivals atone for that which has no recognition either at the beginning or at the end,
and those of the Day of Atonement atone for that which has no recognition at the beginning, but has recognition at the end.
[The rabbis] said to him: What is [the law as to] whether they may be offered one for the other?
He said to them: They may be offered.
They said to him: Since their atonements are not equivalent, how can they be offered [one for the other]?
He said to them: They all come to atone for the impurity of the Temple and its sacred objects.


Explanation[edit]

the he-goats of the Festivals and the he-goats of the New Months: On each holiday, excepting the Sabbath, a he-goat is sacrificed as a public sin-offering. (See Numbers 28-29)

a pure person who ate an impure [food] item: The "impure food" referred to is a sacred object (otherwise there would be no sin).

They all come to atone for the impurity of the Temple and its sacred objects: Apparently Rabbi Shimon means that this basic similarity allows them to be used interchangeably, and to effect whichever atonement is desired.