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In maseches Rosh Hashana 13a–b, the Gemara attempts to prove that certain crops count as having grown in the year in which they achieve one-third of their total growth:

מנלן כדתניא רבי יונתן בן יוסף אומר (ויקרא כה, כא) ועשת את התבואה לשלש השנים אל תקרי לשלש אלא לשליש

How then do we know [this rule about a third]? — As it has been taught: R. Jonathan b. Joseph says: And it shall bring forth produce for the three years; read not lishlosh [for three], but lishlish [to a third].

I’ve only ever seen al tikri used for midrash aggadah. Is this a real drasha and an exception, or are there other uses of al tikri for midrash halacha, or is this not a real mid’oraisa drasha?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

It does occur sometimes in Midrashei Halacha. See for example Bava Kamma 10b:

תשלומי נזק מלמד שהבעלים מטפלין בנבילה מנא הני מילי אמר ר' אמי דאמר קרא (ויקרא כד, יח) מכה נפש בהמה ישלמנה אל תקרי ישלמנה אלא ישלימנה

‘“To compensate for damage" imports that the owners [plaintiffs] have to retain the carcass as part payment’. What is the authority for this ruling? — R. Ammi said: Scripture states, He that killeth a beast yeshallemennah [shall make it good]; do not read yeshallemennah [‘he shall pay for it’], but yashlimennah [‘He shall complete its deficiency’].

There's also Kiddushin 30a:

אמר רב ספרא משום ר' יהושע בן חנניא: מאי דכתיב (דברים ו, ז) "ושננתם לבניך"? אל תקרי "ושננתם" אלא "ושלשתם" - לעולם ישלש אדם שנותיו: שליש במקרא שליש במשנה שליש בתלמוד.

Which is brought down lehalacha by the Rambam and others to split one's learning into thirds, even though the case can be made it is a suggestion aggadata and not halacha.

By that token we find some statements that are aggadatas that have an impact on halacha:

Pesachim 49b:

כל העוסק בתורה לפני עם הארץ כאילו בועל ארוסתו בפניו שנאמר (דברים לג, ד) תורה צוה לנו משה מורשה אל תקרי מורשה אלא מאורסה

Or Eruvin 99a:

אמר ר"ל כיח בפני רבו חייב מיתה שנאמר (משלי ח, לו) כל משנאי אהבו מות אל תקרי למשנאי אלא למשניאי והא מינס אניס כיח ורק קאמרינן

If you're doing daf yomi, you may remember that the beginning of Rosh Hashana has an al tikri for an aggadata in service of trying to prove Nissan is the beginning of months for kings - which affects halacha.

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