There was a certain schul that I hate and I rented a dragon to devour the rabbi and the congregants.

When the dragon returned from its reign of terror, I find out that it didn't eat all the people, it only ate the Rov!

Is eating the rov considered like eating the whole thing or can I claim some of the money back from the lessor?

This question is Purim Torah and is not intended to be taken completely seriously. See the Purim Torah policy.

  • 6
    Why would you assume that רבו ככלו (its rov is like its kahal) when it comes to contractual obligations?
    – Ypnypn
    Feb 22, 2015 at 2:59
  • 1
    Because I am an ignoramus who has only a perfunctory understanding of Jewish theology. Feb 22, 2015 at 3:09
  • 5
    This sounds like a request for psak... Feb 22, 2015 at 3:16
  • 3
    You should have called Trogdor, he would have done the job.
    – jim
    Feb 22, 2015 at 5:34
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    Dragons are associated with the Great Leviathan whose flesh will be consumed by the righteous in messianic times according to Jewish tradition. As such, contracts involving dragons cannot be broken. The dragon fulfilled the contract by eating the Rabbi. Tell the rabbi's family not to be too upset. When resurrected, the rabbi will have his just reward.
    – JJLL
    Feb 22, 2015 at 5:54

3 Answers 3


It is obvious in halacha that Rov is equivalent to the whole, for linguistic (רובא ככולא) and philosophical reasons (תלמוד תורה כנגד כולם and כבוד התורה חמירא).

However, it could be argued that in reality the Rabbi's whole role is to serve the people and therefore he is secondary to the congregation and if they weren't eaten, then it cannot be claimed that the dragon did its job. The proof that a rabbi is subservient to the people (besides for פוק חזי) iS that Rabbi (רב) has the numerical value of 202 which is numerically equivalent to "עבד עבדים" (a slave of slaves). this reveals that the rabbi is nothing in and of himself, but is wholly secondary to his congregation.

Since we have equally compelling arguments to support paying the dragon renter and not paying, we conclude המוציא מחבירו עליו הראיה (the money stays where it is) in this case since the dragon-master already has the money, you have no right to demand it back.

  • You can't bump PTIJ out of season. See the policy
    – Double AA
    Jul 20, 2017 at 22:12
  • Oops. Thought that was just editing op.
    – mevaqesh
    Jul 20, 2017 at 22:32

I may be mistaken so correct me if I'm wrong, but from memory I believe there's a shita in gemara (I think Bava Basra perek yesh nochalin, but can't remember offhand), that if a shechiv mera (someone on his deathbed) writes over his property to his wife and his sons, he has equated the wife to all the sons, so the wife gets 1/2 and the sons split the other half. (The other shita holds the wife is just an apotropos for the property.)

Thus, since you hired the dragon to "devour the rabbi and the congregants", you have equated the rabbi to all the congregants, and the principle of "rubo k'kulo" does not apply since it has only fulfilled exactly half the contract.

Additionally, in Bava Metziah (somewhere towards the end, maybe perek hasocher es haumnin?) there is a rule that if contracted workers back out part way through the job, the ruling depends -- if there are other workers to finish the job, "ein alav elah tarumos," i.e. the employer has no legal recourse (but you would not need to pay for the full job). If there are no other workers, the employer is allowed to deceive them, i.e. claim to pay them more for finishing the job, but not actually give more in the end.

So the ruling here depends on whether there are other workers to finish the job. If so, you must hire others, if not, you can deceive the dragon with a promise of higher wages.

  • Welcome to Mi Yodeya, Ken Zein. Please feel free to peruse our other Nezikin-related questions and enjoy the site. Feb 23, 2015 at 15:29
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    I'd like to second @Noach's welcome, Ken. You might want to see our other 100+ purim-torah-in-jest questions for even more Adar humor, and of course, we hope you stick around for some "real" Q&A also. :)
    – Scimonster
    Feb 23, 2015 at 15:33

While רובו ככולו would not normally apply to contract law, in this case one might say that it does because dragon attacks are understood to leave some survivors. However, on a closer reading of the terms of your contract with the dragon it appears that the dragon cannot claim רובו ככולו because the contract specifies both the Rov and the congregation. Thus in order to fulfill his terms, the dragon must eat a majority of the congregation in addition to the Rov.

All that being said, having a din torah with someone is no excuse for rudeness. Dragons are intelligent beings and are hired, not rented like cattle.

  • Dragons do not exist. If a dragon ate your rabbi, I recommend you see your doctor. You might be delusional.
    – Turk Hill
    Apr 9, 2019 at 3:23
  • @TurkHill Did you notice the "Purim Torah in Jest" tag on the question?
    – Yitzchak
    Apr 10, 2019 at 19:17
  • lol I did not. In that case, if a dragon eats your rabbi, you may tell him to join the circus!
    – Turk Hill
    Apr 10, 2019 at 19:39

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