A. The omasum or the second stomach [reticulum] which are pierced on the outer edge [M. 3:1 H]. The rabbis taught, A needle which is found in the thick wall of the reticulum [M. Hul. 3:2 C6], when it protrudes from one side, it [the animal] is valid. [When it protrudes] on both sides, it is invalid. If there is in its place a coagulated drop of blood, [51a] one may be certain that [the needle was in place] before slaughter. [If] there is not in its place a coagulated drop of blood, one may be certain that [the needle was in place] after slaughter. [If] the surface of a wound formed a scab, one may be certain that [it was there] three days before slaughter. [If] the surface of a wound did not form a scab, [then] he who makes a claim against his fellow must bring proof [that the animal is invalid] [T. 3:11 B-D].
B. And why is this [case of the needle in the reticulum] different from all other [instances of] piercing where even if there is no blood the master may declare it terefah?
C. There [in the other cases] there was nothing [for the blood] to adhere to. Here [in our case] since there is a needle [in the hole], if it was there before the slaughtering, [the blood] would surely have adhered to it.
D. Said R. Safra to Abayye, “Has the master seen the great rabbi who came from the West and says his name is R. Avira? And he said it once happened that a [case of a] needle that protruded from one side of the thick wall of the reticulum came before Rabbi [for a ruling]. And he declared it terefah. He sent for him [Avira]. But he did not come to him. He [Abayye] himself went to him [Avira]. He was standing on the roof. He [Abayye] said, `Come Down Master.' He did not come down. He [Abayye] went up to him. He said to him, `Tell me what were the main points of the incident.'”
E. “He said to him, `I was at the back of the assembly of the most high great Rabbi. And R. Huna from Sepphoris and R. Yosé of Medea were sitting before him. And there came to Rabbi [a case for a ruling] of a needle found in the thick wall of the reticulum [protruding] from one side. And Rabbi turned it over and found on it a coagulated drop of blood and declared it terefah. And he said, “If there is no wound there, where did the coagulated drop of blood come from?”'”
F. He [Abayye] said to him, “You put me through so much trouble [with this lengthy story to relate such an obvious rule]. It is in the Mishnah: The omasum or the second stomach [reticulum] that are pierced on the exterior [M. 3:1 H].”
A. [If] it fell from the roof [M. 3:1 I]. Said R. Huna, “If he left an animal above [on the roof] and came and found it below [on the ground], we do not suspect there is any [hidden] injury to its limbs.” [If we did suspect we would require that he wait for twenty-four hours before slaughtering the animal.]
B. Rabina had a kid [on his roof]. It saw peeled barley through the skylight [in the house]. It jumped and fell from the roof to the ground.
C. He [Rabina] came before R. Ashi [for a ruling]. He said to him, “Lo, R. Huna said, `If he left an animal above [on the roof] and came and found it below [on the ground], we do not suspect there is any [hidden] injury to its limbs.' [Is this] because it had something [i.e., the wall of the house] to rub against [to slow it as it fell]. But here [because it jumped through a skylight] it had nothing to rub against. Or perhaps [we do not suspect injury where it jumped from the roof] because it estimated itself [that it could make the jump safely] and here too it estimated itself [that it could make the jump safely].”
D. He said to him, “[It was that we do not suspect injury where it jumped from the roof] because it estimated itself [that it could make the jump safely] and here too it estimated itself [that it could make the jump safely].”
E. In R. Habiba's house there was a ewe that dragged its hind legs behind it. Said R. Yemar, “This one is afflicted with sciatica.” [But it is not terefah.] Rabina objected, “Perhaps its spine is broken.”
F. They inspected it and found [its spine was broken] in accord with Rabina. And even so the law follows in accord with R. Yemar [because] sciatica is common but [a broken] spine is not common.
G. Said R. Huna, “[In the case of] rams that butt one another we do not suspect there is any [hidden] injury to its limbs. Even though they groan in pain [we generally may assume that] the intensity of the contest has overcome them. If they fall to the ground [as a result of the butting] then we certainly should suspect [they suffered serious injury].”
H. Said R. Menashe, “These rams that were stolen by burglars [who must have dropped them over an enclosure to steal them] — we do not suspect that there is any [hidden] injury to their limbs. What is the basis for this [conclusion]? When they throw them [over the enclosure], they throw them on their sides [so they will not be injured and] so they will be ready to run. If they threw them [the rams] back [to the enclosure], we certainly suspect [injury because under such circumstances the burglars would not care about them]. And this is the case only where they threw them back out of fear [of being caught with stolen goods]. But where they threw them back out of remorse [over the burglary, we assume that because of their] remorse they would do so in the best way they could [without injuring the animals].
A. Said R. Judah, said Rab, “If he hit it [an animal] on its head and it [the reflex from the blow] travelled to its tail, or if he hit it on the tail and it travelled to the head, or if [the reflex went] through the entire spine, we do not suspect there is any [hidden] injury to its limbs. And if [he hit an animal] with a thick stick [on the back] we suspect that he broke the back [of the animal]. And if [the stick] has on it nodes, we suspect [there is hidden injury to its limbs]. And if [he hit the animal with a stick that] is fresh [i.e., not brittle], we suspect the spine was broken.”
B. Said R. Nahman, “[As a result of a newborn passing out of] the womb, we do not suspect there is any [hidden] injury to its limbs.”
C. Said Raba to R. Nahman, “There is a Tannaite teaching that supports your view: An infant one day old [51b] becomes unclean on account of his seminal flow [M. Nid. 5:3 C]. And if you might have concluded that [we do suspect] there is [hidden] injury to its limbs, then we should apply here the verse, “[When any man has a discharge] from his body, [his body is unclean]” (Lev. 15:2) [which implies he does not become unclean] because of [emission that may be attributable to] another force.”
D. In that case [in M. Nid.] what are we dealing with? The case in question may be one where [the offspring was born] by caesarian section.
E. Come and take note: A calf that was born on the festival, they may slaughter it on the festival [b. Shab. 136a, b. Bes. 6b]. [This implies that we do not suspect there was any hidden injury to the animal.] Here too the case in question may be one where [the offspring was born] by caesarian section.
F. Come and take note: And they agree [concerning a firstling] that if he is born with a blemish on him, this is [a case of an animal] that is ready [for eating on the festival] [b. Bes. 26b]. And if you say that this too is a case of an animal born through caesarian section, is an animal born through caesarian section sanctified [as a firstling]?
G. But lo, said R. Yohanan, “R. Simeon agreed with regard to Holy Things, that [an firstling born through caesarian section] is not holy [b. Nid. 40a].” [So we must reject the suggestion that the animal had no serious injury because it was born by caesarian section.]
H. In that case what are we dealing with? Where the animal [after birth] placed its hooves on the ground [to stand up]. [This demonstrates that it had no serious injury.]
I. And said R. Nahman, “In the slaughter house [if an animal falls] we do not [suspect that] there is any [hidden] injury to its limbs.”
J. A certain ox fell [in the slaughter house] and the sound of its groaning was heard [when it fell]. R. Yitzhak bar Samuel bar Marta went up and bought the choicest cuts [of meat from this animal]. Said to him the rabbis, “On what basis do you do this?” He said to them, “Here is what Rab said, `It digs in its hooves [to break the fall] prior to reaching the ground.'”
A. Said R. Judah, said Rab, “If [an animal that had fallen] stood up, it is not necessary to wait twenty-four hours [to see if it suffered a serious injury in the fall]. It certainly requires an inspection. If it walked [after falling], it is not even necessary to perform an inspection.”
B. R. Hiyya bar Ashi said, “In both cases it is necessary to perform an inspection [to see if there was a serious injury].”
C. Said R. Jeremiah bar Aha, said Rab, “If it stretched forth its foreleg to stand, even if it did not stand [that is enough of a sign that there was no serious injury]. If it lifted up its hind leg to walk, even though it did not walk [that is enough of a sign that there was no serious injury].”
D. And R. Hisda said, “If it stirred as if to stand, even though it did not stand [that is enough of a sign that there was no serious injury].”
E. And the law is for an animal that fell off a roof and he did not know [how it fell], if it stood but did not walk, it is necessary to inspect it, but it is not necessary to wait twenty-four hours. And if it walked, it is not necessary even to inspect it.
F. Said Amemar in the name of R. Dimi from Nehardea, “The animal that fell about which they spoke, it is necessary to inspect it [for injury] near the intestines.”
G. Said to him Mar Zutra, “Here is what they said in the name of R. Pappa, `It is necessary to inspect all the internal areas.”
H. Said Huna Mar the grandson of R. Nehemiah to R. Ashi, “What about the throat organs?” He said to him, “[You do not need to inspect the animal.] The throat organs are too hard to be injured by a fall.”
A. Said R. Judah, said Samuel, “A bird that accidently fell into the water — if it propelled itself one body length, that is enough [to show that there was no serious injury]. ” And they said this only in the case of where [it propelled itself] from downstream to upstream. But upstream to downstream [we may say] the water that propelled it. And if the water was still [with no current], then it makes no difference [which way the bird goes]. And if it was littered with twigs and [the bird] overtook them [even while going downstream], it overtook them [and this is a sign that there was no serious injury to the bird].
B. And if there was a sheet stretched out [and a bird flew into it] we suspect [there is hidden injury to its limbs]. If it was not taut, we do not suspect. And if it was folded [and stretched taut], we do not suspect [because it cannot be made taut enough to do serious injury to the bird].
C. [A bird that flew into] a tightly knotted net, we do suspect [there is injury to its limbs]. [If it flew into] a loosely knotted net, we do not suspect.”
D. [A bird that flew into the top of] a bundle of flax, we do suspect [injury]. [If it flew] into one side or the other [of the bundle], we do not suspect [injury]. [If it flew into] a bundle of reeds, we do suspect [injury]. [If it flew into] flax that was pounded and corded, we do not suspect injury. [If it flew into flax that was] pounded, but not corded, we do suspect [injury]. [If it flew into flax] that had seed pods, because it has in it knots, we do suspect [injury]. [If it flew into] coarse tow (Cashdan), we do suspect [injury]; fine tow, we do not suspect. Dried bark, we do suspect; crushed bark, we do not suspect. Sifted ashes, we do suspect [because it hardens]; unsifted ashes, we do not suspect.