"Indeed, drop some of the bunches, and leave them for her to glean, and do
not reprimand her."
2:16 And also let fall (uka,-ka means)
you should forget; (I.e.,) make yourself (appear) as though you are forgetting.
The Targum of vdda,
oversight, is t,uka (Numbers 15:25). And similarly (2
Samuel 6:7), “because of this error”. Another explanation (of uka,-ka
is “let fall”) (as in the) expression (Deuteronomy 28:40), “for your olive tree
shall cast off (its fruit)”.
Small sheaves. And there is a
comparable expression to it in the language of the Mishnah (Erubin 10:1), “(if)
he found them (tefillin) tied in bundles oh,cm, or
2:16 “Also pull out [stalksj for her from the heaps;
then leave and let her pick. And do not rebuke her.”
ensure Ruth an abundant supply of barley without compromising her pride, Boaz
instructed his men to create “leket” and “shikechah” for her to pick—”leket” by
pulling ears out of the sheaves and scattering them about, and “shikechah” by
pretending to forget sheaves. He emphasized that this was to be done “for her,”
that is, in a way that she would be sure to acquire the grain. When they saw
her coming they were quickly to prepare some “leket” and “shikechah,” and then
“leave and let her pick.”
may be translated as forget, cast down, or drop off—as in lhkgb
ka “cast off your shoes” (Exodus 3:5), or l,hz kah hf, “your
olives will drop off” (Deuteronomy 28:40), or to give booty (kka).
The term oh,cm may mean small sheaves, which can easily be used for
this subterfuge, or large sheaves, which do not come under the ruling of
double verb uka, ka indicates that the action was to be repeated
resorting to these ruses to support her without her knowledge, Boaz was
fulfilling the commandment of charity par excellence. By giving secretly to
spare the poor embarrassment, he emulated God Who sustains the world ohnjrcu
sxjc ijc, with pleasantness as well as kindness and mercy (from Grace
Mishnah teaches that a landowner who allows one pauper to pick but not another,
or who helps only one of them, is robbing the poor. The reason is that other
paupers might stay away when they see that he favors that one. Boaz therefore
contrived to benefit Ruth in an area beyond the legal rights of the poor: among
the sheaves and with shikechah that was deliberately “forgotten.”
was also because of Ruth’s incredible beauty that Boaz instructed his men not
to help her pick, but to “leave and let her pick,” lest they come to sinful
Boaz had already admonished his workers to “let her pick” among the sheaves (v.
15), he now repeated the admonition to be sure they complied. According to a
different interpretation, previously he had spoken of ohrng bundles of
stalks as yet untied; now he referred to oh,cm bound sheaves, or
else grain ready for beating, as in hke vk ycmhu (v.14).
Ruth, after the special arrangements he had made for her, take even more, or
pick together with the other paupers, the workers were not to stop her.
further admonished them to speak to her gently, as befits a princess. And thus
he upheld the teaching of our sages that the Torah prohibition against
afflicting another (Leviticus 25:17) refers to verbal abuse.
earned the kingship of the house of David by speaking gently to Ruth. And in
him there came true, “The Lord your God will bless you,” which the Torah
accords to those who fulfill the commandments of leket, shikechah, and peah
“for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow” (Deuteronomy 24:19).
Abraham Ibn Ezra
16. And also [pretend to] forget some of
the small sheaves for her. Boaz commanded his men to leave piles of grain
as shich'cha for her to take.
And you shall leave [them so that] she may
gather [them]. Because these
piles would be obligated to have the agricultural tithes taken from them since, in truth, they were
not shich'cha, Boaz remedied the situation by charging that they be
abandoned (made hefker) and consequently exempt from any tithes.
And do not criticize her. No matter what she may do, correctly or
incorrectly, do not admonish her. By this he intended that she should be able
to take whatever she needed since his intention was genuinely to provide for
and support her.