Translation:Shulchan Aruch/Even ha-Ezer/4
Paragraph 1- Illegitimate children and nesinim are prohibited an enteral prohibition for all future generations, regardless of whether they are male or female.
Paragraph 2- Amonite and Moabite males are prohibited, and their prohibition is eternal, but their females are permitted immediately.
Paragraph 3- An Egyptian and Edomite are only prohibited for three generations; both males and females. Once he converts, he and his child born after the conversion will be prohibited, but his child’s child would be permitted.
Paragraph 4- If a pregnant Egyptian woman converts, her child has the status of a second-generation Egyptian.
Paragraph 5- If a male Jew has sexual relations with any of the foregoing, the child would have the status of his mother. If any male of the foregoing has sexual relations with a Jewish woman, the child would be permitted to marry in, with the exception of an illegitimate man who had sexual relations with a Jewish woman, but the child would be disqualified from marrying into the priesthood.
Paragraph 6- If one of the foregoing females converted and married a Jew, or if one of the foregoing males converted and married a Jewish woman, the child would have the status of the disqualified one. Thus, if an Amonite convert or second-generation Egyptian married a Jewish woman, the daughter would even be permitted to marry a kohen, because whichever parent’s status the daughter would receive, would make her valid. If a second-generation Egyptian male married a first-generation Egyptian female, however, the child would be a second-generation Egyptian. If a first-generation Egyptian male married a second-generation Egyptian female, there are those who say the child would have the status of a third-generation Egyptian. The Rambam holds the child has the status of a second-generation Egyptian.
Paragraph 7- If a male Amonite married a female Egyptian, the child would be an Amonite. If a male Egyptian married a female Amonite, the child would be an Egyptian, because when it comes to other nations, the child has the status of the male. If they were to convert, however, the child would receive the status of the more deficient parent. Thus, if an Amonite convert married an Egyptian convert, a male child would have the status of an Amonite and would be prohibited forever, and a female child would have the status of an Egyptian. If an Egyptian male covert married a gentile female Amonite, a son would be an Amonite and a daughter would be permitted.
Paragraph 8- If an Egyptian male convert married a female Amonite, the child would be Egyptian and prohibited from marrying in until the third generation.
Paragraph 9- In a case of any other nation, when one converts he immediately has the status of any other Jew.
Paragraph 10- Today all of the nations have assimilated. Thus, an Amonite or Edomite that convert are immediately permitted to marry because we assume anyone who separates from a group has separated from the majority, and thus we assume that he is from the majority of nationalities who are permitted immediately. According to the Rambam, this applies to Egyptians as well, but according the Rosh the restriction on Egyptians remains in place.
Paragraph 11- If a slave has dipped in a mikvah for the sake of becoming a slave, he is prohibited from marrying a Jewish woman. A Jewish male is prohibited from marrying a maidservant, whether she is his or another’s maidservant.
Paragraph 12- Once a slave is freed by his master, he is like a Jew for all matters. If his master made him ownerless or left him a pair of tefillin or the master was the appointed officer in the congregation and called the slave to read from the Torah or if he married him off to a Jewish woman, the slave is still not permitted to a Jewish woman until the master writes an emancipation document. We would, however, be concerned that his marriage is valid. There are those who say that even if his master did not marry him off. but he married in the master’s presence, we would be concerned the marriage is valid. All the more so would we be concerned if the master married his maidservant.
Paragraph 13- What is an illegitimate child? One who is born from one of the forbidden relations, whether the relationship was punishable by death or kares, with the exception of one conceived by a nidah. Although such a child is deficient, he is not even rabbinically illegitimate.
Paragraph 14- If a woman’s husband was overseas and remained there for more than 12 months, and the wife gave birth following such 12-month period, the child is illegitimate because a child does not linger in his mother’s womb for more than 12 months. There are those who say he is not presumed to be illegitimate. Because there is a dispute, he is an uncertain-illegitimate child. Within 12 months, however, there is no concern because we say the child lingered that long in his mother’s womb. This only applies where people did not see anything inappropriate. If they did see something inappropriate, however, we do not say the child lingers that long and we are concerned the child is from another man. If a woman conceived from her husband at the end of Sivan and gave birth at the beginning of Kislev, although there was only five months in between, we are not concerned the woman was pregnant earlier because the actual months are what determined the length of the pregnancy, and the child is one who was born after “seven months.” Even if the woman miscarried in Tishrei and heard the child crying, we would not be concerned she was pregnant earlier because it is possible to cry at five months. The baby is just considered a stillborn and not viable.
Paragraph 15- If a rumor emerged on a married woman that she had an affair while married to her husband, and everyone is gossiping about her, we are not concerned that her children are illegitimate because most of her sexual relations are assumed to be with her husband. We would, however, be concerned that she herself is a zonah and a kohen would be biblically required to be concerned. If her husband was a kohen, we would suspect her children are challalim. A yisrael would also need to be concerned if he wanted to distance himself from disgusting matters. If she was extremely promiscuous we would even be concerned that the children were illegitimate. She is nevertheless believed to say her children are valid. If she was extremely promiscuous while single or as an arusah, but was not promiscuous following her marriage, even if they saw her commit adultery once, her children would be valid.
Paragraph 16- If a woman’s husband went overseas and the woman married someone else and the first husband turned out to be alive, a child from the second husband would be illegitimate. If the first husband then had sexual relations with her before the second husband divorced her, and she gave birth, the child would be rabbinically illegitimate and would not be allowed to marry a bona-fide illegitimate woman, but would be allowed to marry a rabbinically illegitimate woman as he is. If she had an affair, however, and the husband then had sexual relations with her, the child would not be illegitimate.
Paragraph 17- If one was half-slave, half-free and had sexual relations with a married woman, there is no solution for the child because the illegitimate side and valid side are mixed together. Thus, he would even be prohibited from marrying a maidservant, and his descendants will have the same status as him for all eternity.
Paragraph 18- If a Jewish male married an illegitimate female, or an illegitimate male married a Jewish female, the offspring will be illegitimate for all eternity.
Paragraph 19- If a gentile or slave had sexual relations with an illegitimate female, the child would be illegitimate. If they had sexual relations with a Jewish girl, the child would be valid but prohibited to the priesthood, regardless of whether the mother was single or married.
Paragraph 20- If an illegitimate male has sexual relations with a gentile, the child is a gentile. If the child converts he is like any other Jew. If an illegitimate male has sexual relations with a maidservant, the child would be a slave. If he is freed he has the status of a freed slave. Thus, he may marry a maidservant in the first instance who accepted the commandments and immersed in a mikvah for the sake of slavery to permit her children once they are free to be allowed to marry Jews.
Paragraph 21- If a gentile has sexual relations with his mother and gives birth to a son and the son converts, the son is permitted to marry in.
Paragraph 22- A convert and freed slave are permitted to marry an illegitimate woman. Likewise, an illegitimate male is permitted to marry a female convert or freed maidservant because the congregation of converts is not considered a “congregation.” Even if the child was conceived and born while under the covenant, such as where his father was a convert and married a female convert, the child would still be permitted to marry an illegitimate female. This is only true for the first 10 generations. Following that, however, the child would be prohibited because their convert status has already been forgotten and people will eventually say a Jewish male can marry an illegitimate female. According the Rambam, he would be permitted to marry an illegitimate female, as would all his descendants, until their convert status is forgotten and people are unaware the offspring is a convert, after which he would be prohibited from marrying an illegitimate female. Both converts and freed slaves have the same laws for all matters.
Paragraph 23- If a male convert married a Jewish girl or a Jewish male married a female convert, the child is Jewish for all matters and cannot marry someone illegitimate.
Paragraph 24- An illegitimate male can marry an illegitimate female. When is this true? Where both are certainly illegitimate. If one was certainly illegitimate and the other was uncertain, however, or even if both were uncertain, they are prohibited from marrying each other because one may be illegitimate and the other may not be. How would we have someone who is uncertain whether he is illegitimate? For example, one had sexual relations with another whom we are uncertain is a forbidden relation, such as one who had sexual relations with a woman whom his father had an uncertain marriage or divorce.
Paragraph 25- If a childless widow did not wait three months after her husband’s death and had yibum performed to her, and she gave birth to a child whom we don’t know was a nine-month child of her first husband or seven-month child of her second, the child is valid. If the brother-in-law subsequently has sexual relations with her and the wife conceives and gives birth, the child is uncertain-illegitimate and would be prohibited from marrying an illegitimate female or Jewish girl.
Paragraph 26- If a single girl conceived and gave birth and is not present so we cannot investigate her, or she is insane or mute, or even if she says the child is so-and-so’s and we know that person is illegitimate, the child will only be uncertain-illegitimate, even if such person admits he had sexual relations with her, because just as she had relations with him she could have had relations with another. If that individual is valid, the child is valid, but we would still not presume the child to be that person’s definite son allowing him to inherit if the person does not admit it is his son. Even if she was in a relationship with him, she would not be believed with respect to him. Even a solo witness would not be believed if the alleged father contradicts him. We would be concerned for her claim, however, and the child would be prohibited to marry the relatives of that individual. This is only true where the woman is single. If she had an affair while married, however, even if she says the child belongs to so-and-so and is illegitimate, we do not concern ourselves with her claim because we assume most of her sexual relations are with her husband, and the child is valid and permitted to marry the relatives of such person she claims is the father.
Paragraph 27- If an arusah conceived while in her father’s home and she says she conceived from the arus, and the arus admits or is not in our presence, the child is valid. The child is considered his with respect to inheritance, even if the arus says he does not remember but does not contradict her. If the arus does not admit, but contradicts her by saying the child is not his, the child is certain-illegitimate. If she is not present to be able to ask her, or if she says she doesn’t know who the child is from, the child is uncertain-illegitimate. The woman is not presumed to be a zonah. Rather, she is believed to say she had sexual relations with her arus, even if he contradicts her. This is only as it relates to a third party, in that if she marries a kohen she would not have to be divorced and any child from the him would be valid. With respect to the arus himself, however, she is prohibited because she has made herself into a piece of something forbidden.
Paragraph 28- If the people were gossiping about a woman that she had sexual relations with her arus and other men, even if the arus had relations with her in his father-in-law’s house, the child is uncertain-illegitimate because just as she gave herself up to the arus so too did she give herself up to others. If she was interrogated and she said she had sexual relations with her arus, the child is valid. The same applies where it is known the arus had sexual relations with her and there was no rumor that she had an affair with others.
Paragraph 29- If a married woman says about a fetus that it is not from her husband, she is not believed to disqualify the fetus. There are those who say that this only applies to a married woman in which case the son has a presumption of validity. With respect to an arusa that says her son is illegitimate, however, even if the arus says the son is his and that his arusa never left his hand, there are those who say the son would be uncertain-illegitimate. There are others who say the father would be believed. If the father says the fetus is not his or that one of his sons is not his, however, he would be believed to disqualify the child, and the child would be certain-illegitimate. If the son has his own children, the father is not even believed on the son. If the mother says she conceived from a gentile or slave, the child is valid, because the husband is unable to contradict her on that. This that a father is believed on his son is only where there was no presumption of validity based on the father. If there was a presumption of validity based on the father, however, the father would no longer be believed without witnesses. If a father says his son is illegitimate and then retracts and gives a rationale why he said otherwise originally he would be believed. This that a father is believed on his son is with respect to someone who is the presumed father, such a child born from his wife. If someone single said this is so-and-so’s son, however, and the alleged father says the mother conceived from someone illegitimate, he would not be believed to disqualify the son, and the mother is believed to say the son is valid.
Paragraph 30- If one says on himself that he is illegitimate, he is believed to disqualify himself for a Jewish woman. He would be prohibited from marrying an illegitimate female until we know with certainty that he is illegitimate. His son would have the same status as him. If he has grandchildren, he would only be believed to disqualify himself.
Paragraph 31- A foundling who is gathered from the market has the status of uncertain-illegitimate in a case where there is no proof that the child was not cast there to die. If there is proof that he not case there to die, whether there is proof on his body such as where he was circumcised or his limbs were proper and straight as they do for young children or the child was smeared with oil or had makeup applied to his eyes or an amulet was hanging on him, or there is proof from the location such as there it is a place where no animal can reach or it was near the city or was found near the synagogue or on the sides of the public domain, the rules of foundling would not apply since his parents were concerned to protect him and he was only cast there because of hunger.
Paragraph 32- If a child was cast on the road, and someone comes and says it is his son and he cast the child, he would be believed. Likewise, the child’s mother would be believed. If the child was gathered from the market and his father and mother come and say it is their child, they would not be believed because the child already received the name of a foundling. During years of hunger they would be believed because they only cast the child due to the hunger and they wanted others to feed him, which is why they were silent until the child was gathered.
Paragraph 33- If a foundling was found in a city with gentiles and Jews, the child is an uncertain-gentile with respect to lineage, regardless of whether the city is mostly Jewish or mostly gentile. If he marries a woman, she would need a get out of doubt. If the court immersed him for the sake of conversion or he immersed after becoming an adult, for lineage purposes he has status of other foundlings discovered in Jewish cities, where immersion would only be effective to remove him from any gentile status.
Paragraph 34- If the child did not immerse and the court did not immerse him and the city was majority-gentile, it would be permitted to feed him non-kosher meat. If the city was majority-Jewish, we would return his lost item to him as if he were a Jew. If the city was half and half, the mitzvah to keep him alive like a Jew would apply and we would uncover a pile from on top of him on the Sabbath. For damages and all uncertain monetary cases we would apply the principle that the party trying to remove money has the burden of proof. There are those who say we would even uncover a pile on the Sabbath for him in a city that is majority-gentile, but we are only commanded to keep him alive where the city is majority-Jewish.
Paragraph 35- If a kohen’s wife, levi’s wife, yisroel’s wife and an illegitimate’s wife all gave birth together, the midwife is believed to say this child is the kohen’s, levi’s or illegitimate’s, because there is no presumption on the child and we do know his lineage. When is this true? Where the midwife is established as trustworthy and nobody has an objection. If someone objects- even if it is just one person- and says the midwife is testifying falsely, she is not believed and the child has a presumption of being valid without any lineage.
Paragraph 36- Children of uncertain lineage, such as “silenced” ones and foundlings are prohibited from marrying each other. If they do marry, they cannot stay married and must divorce with a get. Any child would have an uncertain status like his parents. These uncertain children have no remedy other than marrying converts, and their children would have the status of the more deficient one. How so? If a silenced or foundling male married a female convert or freed slave, of if a freed male slave married a silenced or foundling female, the child would be silenced or a foundling.
Paragraph 37- In any jurisdiction where there is a maidservant or gentile who is capable of giving birth, because a foundling would have the status of an uncertain gentile or slave when he marries a convert, the woman is an uncertain-married woman. Likewise, if a silenced male marries a woman who could potentially be a prohibited relation to him, she is an uncertain-married woman because marriage does not take effect on a prohibited relation. What kind of woman could potentially be a prohibited relation to him? Any woman whose father or brother was alive when the husband’s mother conceived him, and any woman who is divorced or widowed, because the woman could be the man’s father’s wife or the man’s father’s brother’s wife. One is prohibited from marrying a Karaite. They are all uncertain-illegitimate and we would not accept them if they want to repent. With respect to those who were compelled to convert who now want to return, however, it seems to me that one would be allowed to marry them just like any other convert.