I'm almost certainly misreading something here. However:

I was reading Insights to the Daf for Yevamos 34, and in response to a question that implies a Misnha on 33b contradicts a Gemara that says that a woman cannot get pregnant the first time she has relations (which at least today is not the case, but regardless), Tosfos HaRosh seems to say that the case of the Misnhah is where the girl was married before age 3 and had relations then, and therefore the Misnhah still considers the first intercourse after age 3 to be the first time, yet then she is capable of getting pregnant.

The TOSFOS HA'ROSH answers that according to the Girsa of Tosfos (see previous Insight) the answer is obvious. Tosfos explains that the Mishnah refers to a case in which the women became married before they were three years old. Any act of relations performed prior to that age did not constitute relations and the girls are not considered Be'ulos (since their Besulim return until the age of three). Consequently, the act of relations with their husbands after they reach the age of three is considered "Bi'ah Rishonah." (See also RASHASH.)

Now, I don't totally follow what he's saying, since the Misnhah in question says that minors cannot get pregnant, so it implies that the women getting married must be adults for them to get pregnant. Does it mean that they got married before age 3, had relations, got divorced, and this is their second marrage when they're adults?

Again I think I'm probably just tired and misreading something. But if I'm not, is Tosfos HaRosh really saying that the Misnhah is saying that girls under three years of age used to get married and have sex (be it in the time of the Mishnah or in the time of Tosfos HaRosh)? Or is it just a hypothetical thing?

  • judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/4751/…
    – Michoel
    Commented Jan 19, 2014 at 20:08
  • @Michoel Thanks but I'm asking more of what Tosfos HaRosh specifically is saying. That this specific Misnhah means a girl under 3 got married and had relations.
    – Uncle
    Commented Jan 19, 2014 at 20:09

2 Answers 2


קידושין מ ע"א Kidushin 40:A

האיש מקדש את בתו כשהיא נערה: כשהיא נערה אין כשהיא קטנה לא מסייע ליה לרב דאמר רב יהודה אמר רב ואיתימא רבי אלעזר אסור לאדם שיקדש את בתו כשהיא קטנה עד שתגדל ותאמר בפלוני אני רוצה:

[R' Yehuda says in the name of Rav or R' Elazar - a man may not give his daughter in marriage until she will grow and say - I want to marry this man].

I want to believe that the Mishna you read talks about a situation that is possible but not practiced

  • 1
    How is that reconciled with the midrash that says Rivka was 3 when she agreed to go with Eliezer? (BTW, if you could provide an English translation of the quote, it'll be accessible to more people.) Commented Jan 19, 2014 at 20:16
  • 1
    Again, I quote, "Tosfos explains that the Mishnah refers to a case in which the women became married before they were three years old." Maybe they didn't hold by R'Yehudah or thought 2 year olds could make big decisions.
    – Uncle
    Commented Jan 19, 2014 at 20:19
  • 1
    So the Mishna talks about a case which is disencourged.
    – Alaychem
    Commented Jan 19, 2014 at 20:21
  • 1
    @Monica Cellio if you take the midrash as simple historical truth - it does not.
    – Alaychem
    Commented Jan 19, 2014 at 20:42
  • @Monica It's not quite a Midrash, it's Rashi following the chronology of Seder HaDorot, since post-Binding of Isaac at 37, they learned of Rivka's birth. Daat Zekeinim from the Tosafists say she was 11 at the Akeidah, but Avraham had been cut off from his family until then, so he's just hearing now about Rivka's birth 11 years prior. Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 17:24

This is just a hypothetical thing.

He is using a legal definition of "first time" to get around the contradiction. I.e. the first time is when the hymen breaks. If the hymen grew back, then the next time, is actually the firs time.

The discussion is more interested in the legal definitions of terms, than an actual practical case.


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