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Order of the Day

Order of the Day

A step-by-step guide to Tisha B’Av observance


Note: Special rules and certain variations apply if Tisha B’Av falls on Shabbat or Sunday. Click here for the details.

Afternoon of the 8th of Av

The restriction against studying Torah—other than sections that discuss the destruction of the Temples or other sad topics—commences at midday on the eve of the fast. With few exceptions, the prohibition continues until the end of the fast.

Tachanun (penitential prayer) is omitted from the afternoon prayer, as well as from all of the Tisha B’Av prayers.1

Shortly before the fast begins, we eat a “separation meal.” The final meal consists of a hard-boiled egg and a piece of bread dipped in ashesThis somber meal is not very plentiful—it follows a larger meal eaten a bit earlier. This final meal is eaten while sitting on the floor or a low stool. It consists of a piece of bread and a hard-boiled egg dipped in ashes, a symbol of mourning. (No zimmun is conducted when reciting the Grace After Meals.)

With sundown, all the laws of Tisha B’Av take effect.

Tisha B’Av Eve

In the synagogue, the curtain is removed from the ark, and the lights are dimmed. After the evening prayers, the book of Lamentations (Eichah) is read. The leader reads aloud, and the congregation reads along in an undertone. In some communities (not Chabad), Lamentations is read by the leader from a parchment scroll.2

Lamentations is followed by the recitation of a few brief kinot (elegies) and the “V’Atah Kadosh” paragraph, followed by kaddish (minus the stanza beginning “Titkabel”3—which is also omitted from the kaddish recited at the end of the morning prayers).

Tisha B’Av Morning

When ritually washing the hands in the morning, pour water on your fingers only until the knuckle joints. While your fingers are still moist, you may wipe your eyes with them. It is not permitted to rinse out one’s mouth—or brush one’s teeth—until after the fast.

Considering that we don’t wear leather footwear on this day, the blessing “Who provided me with all my needs,” which primarily thanks G‑d for providing us with shoes, is omitted from the morning blessings.Tefillin are referred to as our “glory,” and on the Ninth of Av our glory is absent

Tallit and tefillin are not worn during the morning services. Tefillin are referred to as our “glory,” and on the Ninth of Av our glory is absent. Tzitzit are worn the entire day.

Those who follow Sephardic tradition insert the “Aneinu” passage in the Amidah. The priestly blessing is omitted from the cantor’s repetition.

The Torah reading in the morning is Deuteronomy 4:25–40, which speaks of the destruction of the Land of Israel. A chapter from Jeremiah (8:13–9:23), which also speaks of the destruction, is read as the haftorah.

After the morning prayers, it is customary to read the kinot elegies. The service then concludes with “Uva L’Tziyon” (omitting its second verse, “And this is My covenant”4) and “Aleinu.” The Song of the Day and “Ein K’Elokeinu” are omitted.

Work is permitted on Tisha B’Av, but discouraged. On this day, one’s focus should be on mourning and repentance. If one must work, it should preferably begin after midday.

It is customary to give extra charity on every fast day.

Tisha B’Av Afternoon

It is customary to wait until midday before starting the food preparations for the post-fast meal. The intensity of the mourning lessens in the afternoon, as is evident from the relaxing of certain restrictions.

After midday, it is once again permitted to sit on chairs and benches of regular height.Many have the custom to clean the house and wash the floors in anticipation of the Redemption

Many communities have the custom to clean the house and wash the floors after midday, in anticipation of the Redemption which we await.

In the synagogue, the ark’s curtain is restored to its place before the afternoon prayers.

Men don their tallit and tefillin for the afternoon prayers. Before starting the afternoon prayers, it is customary to say those prayers omitted from the conclusion of the morning services.

The Torah is read before the Amidah. The reading is Exodus 32:11–14 and 34:1–10, which discusses how, in the aftermath of the Golden Calf incident, Moses successfully interceded on the Israelites’ behalf and attained forgiveness for their sin. After the afternoon Torah reading, the special fast-day haftorah, Isaiah 55:6–56:8, is read.

The sections of “Nachem” and “Aneinu” are added to the Amidah. (Note: “Aneinu” is recited only by those who are actually fasting.)

Post–Tisha B’Av

Before breaking the fast, one should perform netilat yadayim, this time covering the entire hand with water, but without reciting the blessing.

The Temple was set ablaze on the afternoon of the 9th of Av, and burned through the 10th. Therefore, the restrictions of the Nine Days (such as not eating meat, swimming, or laundering clothing) extend until midday of the 10th of Av.

However, if Tisha B’Av falls on a Thursday—in which case the 10th falls on Friday—one may wash and cut one’s hair on Friday morning in honor of the Shabbat.


This is because there is a verse (Lamentations 1:15) that refers to the Ninth of Av as moed, a word that can also mean “a festival.” This is a reflection of the idea that Tisha B’Av is the birthday of Moshiach, and contains the potential to be a great holiday—a potential that will be realized with the coming of Moshiach.


In some communities that read Lamentations from a parchment scroll, the reader recites the blessing al mikra megillah beforehand.
Levush writes that the prevalent custom to not read Lamentations from a parchment scroll is based on the fact that such scrolls were rare. Scribes did not customarily inscribe this scroll, as an expression of the yearning and great anticipation for the time when the Ninth of Av will be transformed into a day of rejoicing and happiness.


Omitted because it is a petition that our prayers be accepted. We read in Lamentations (3:8) that “my prayer has been shut out”—so how can we petition G‑d to accept our prayers if they have been shut out?


This verse is omitted because we are forbidden to study Torah—G‑d’s covenant—on Tisha B’Av. Also, so that it does not appear as if we were establishing a covenant with G‑d over the destruction.

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Levi July 6, 2017

Is going to work allowed on the 9th of av? Reply

EK July 7, 2017
in response to Levi:

Work is permitted on Tisha B’Av, but discouraged. On this day, one’s focus should be on mourning and repentance. If one must work, it should preferably begin after midday.

Shulchan Aruch Orach Chayim 554:22 Reply

Chaia NY August 14, 2016

Why aren't we celebrating the fact that we have survived despite the obstacles we have faced for centuries. We should light the memorial candle for those lost. Fasting is dangerous for many including myself. Why does every Jewish holiday except Chanukah have to be a sad day of misery. G-D doesn't want us to suffer but rabbis create these laws that just bring suffering and make life less than what it should be. I can see fasting on Yom Kippur but on any other day we should think about how strong and lucky we are to have our own state. It's time to reexamine these laws that take so much of our lives. Love G-D and honor him without the constant misery Reply Staff via July 25, 2015

To Anonymous Yes, after Shabbat has ended you may drive to Shul. Reply

Anonymous toronto July 25, 2015

Tisha B' Av rules may we drive to shule? Reply

Mrs. Chana Benjaminson via September 22, 2014

To Anonymous No, one may resume wearing leather at the conclusion of the fast. Reply

Yisroel Cotlar Cary August 15, 2014

The fasting on Tisha B'av is specific to the day. The day is inherently a day of repentance, fasting, and asking Hashem to bring Moshiach,

If for whatever reason one was not able to fast (medical, etc) there is no need to fast on another day though giving extra tzedaka is always appropriate...


Anonymous Johannesburg August 13, 2014

Can you fast another day if you could not fast on Tisha B'Av? Can you fast another day if you could not fast on Tisha B'Av? Reply Staff August 5, 2014

To Marlene Exact times vary from city to city and town to town, to find times for your current location please see Reply

Marlene Rubenstein DC August 5, 2014

What time does the fast end EST Reply

Ahava VA August 5, 2014

May this be our last Tisha B'Av. Repent and love all Jews.
Ahava Reply

Anonymous PA September 20, 2014

Does restriction on leather shoes extend until mi-day on the 10th as well? Reply

Philip August 5, 2014

9th of 'Av can't change #Bob. Many have asked your question. Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik of blessed memory, lists three reasons why the 9th of Av is a very important day. 1) We mourn not for something that happened millennia ago, but for tragedies that, in our unique historical consciousness, we relive today. 2) We observe not only in mourning, but also so pray that what happened twice before, should not, G-d forbid happen again. 3) We observe because we cannot understand why our people continue to suffer so much tragedy. The 9th of Av represents not only the destruction of the Holy Temples, but also the many other tragedies that have taken place over our very long history.
For more discussion, please see the "Koren Mesorat Harav Kinot" published in 2010 which goes into much greater detail. Reply

Anonymous Here. August 4, 2014

We should rejoice, by thinking of the future. Rabbi: When I was a child, I had a dream in which I was encircled and lifted up by grapevines which had fruit. My father asked the late Rabbi Schneerson the meaning of the dream, and he said that it means I am personally witnessing and helping bring about Age of Moshiach.

Another mystical person, who was not Jewish, but had the ability to see things before they happened said the same thing about me, and about the future.

I am not orthodox, but I was born Jewish, and I will always be Jewish, I am a monotheist. I don't always know what G-D wants from me, but I feel that we should all be rejoicing in some way, because of the inevitable future, instead of feeling down at all. My favorite prayer is "I will to will the will of G-D, I will to do the will of G-D'. That is my favorite prayer, because G-D is a Never Ending Mysterious Power. And so, this year, I am not fasting. I feel it is important to be ready to fight for our human rights as Jewish people to have personal freedom. Reply

Anonymous August 4, 2014

Tisha B'Av May everyone have an easy fast and speedily and soon our Holy Temple be rebuilt. And may our brothers and sisters in Israel be safe and strengthened. Reply

Bob NYC August 4, 2014

Changing I note that other (minor) holidays have vanished over time (we won a war, 200 years later we lost a war, etc.).

When will the 9th of Av change? Reply Staff August 3, 2014

To Jesse Yes, one may drive a car on Tisha B'Av. Reply

Jesse Corey August 1, 2014

Driving on Tisha B'Av Is it okay to drive your car on Tisha B'Av Reply

Anonymous July 16, 2013

leather shoes can one wear leather shoes after midday? Reply

Anonymous July 15, 2013

Prohibition against Torah Study Until when is the prohibition against Torah study? Reply

B. Apel Encino, Ca July 29, 2012

Tisha b'av Re : "May it be the last fasting that the Jewish nation have to do for the Holy Temple. May the redemption of the people come speedily and in our days. "

With the coming of Mashiach.
OMEIN and OMEIN! Reply

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