ERUBIN ("mingling") is the second Talmud treatise of Seder Mo'ed, forming an appendix to the treatise Shabbath. It contains regulations concerning three kinds of "'erub": (1) the 'erub par excellence, called also, as in the first paragraph of this treatise, "mabui" (lit. "street"), elliptically for "'erub mabui" (ch. i.-ii.); (2) "'erube tehumin" (ch. iii.-v.); and (3) "'erube hazerot" (ch. vi.-vii. 5). These three sections are followed by miscellaneous laws concerning carrying things a distance of four cubits or more within the public domain, or from the public domain into the private domain, and vice versa (ch. viii. 6 to end cf treatise). Extraneous matters are occasionally introduced; e.g., from four things soldiers in a camp are exempt: (1) they may freely take wood for their use without becoming guilty of robbery; (2) they need not wash their hands before meals; (3) they may partake of demai; and (4) they need not prepare 'erube hazerot. The rules of 'erube tehumin lead to the question whether the two days of New Year should be treated as equally sacred, or as including one sacred and one non-sacred day. Rabbi Dosa b. Harkinas gives expression to the latter view by suggesting two different forms of prayer for the two days.
In recommending meekness the Gemara points to the Hillelites as examples. For three years they were discussing certain problems with the Shammaites; in the end they prevailed because they were modest, and kindly disposed toward others, having due regard for the opinion of their opponents. An incident in the life of R. Akiba is related as an example of firmness in obedience to religious precepts. Akiba, when in prison, was attended by R. Joshua, who was daily supplied with a certain quantity of water for Akiba. One day the governor of the prison reduced the quantity by one-half. Akiba was then informed that there was not sufficient water to wash his hands before taking his meal. The rabbi insisted on having the water for washing his hands even at the risk of dying of thirst. (From JE, s.v. 'Erubin.)
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