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Daf 56 question

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1 Daf 56 question on Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:41 pm

Hahu yinuka etc

Why does rashi say that the child was six years old. He should have said that he learned the mesechta for six years and that's how it's sounds like from the lashon of the gemara.

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2 Re: Daf 56 question on Wed Mar 14, 2018 6:33 am

I see that Mesivta (and Rabbeinu Chananel) takes Rashi's reading for granted. I'm myself inclined to agree that your alternate reading is possible, even though "ben number" usually means an age: see Shmuel-I 13(1): "Shaul was ben shana in his rule..." The verse does add that he was a tinok, which may hint to Rashi's reading.

Mesivta brings the Chasam Sofer, who asks the reasonable question, Why do we need to know about his age (or his youth) at all? He answers that if a six-year-old can know enough about Maseches Avodah Zarah to answer sheilos, a non-Jewish boy could do the same about avodah zarah itself, which would justify some halachos there about a very young idol worshipper.

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3 Re: Daf 56 question on Wed Mar 14, 2018 10:07 am

Thanks!

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