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Rambam - 3 Chapters a Day

She'ar Avot haTum'ah - Chapter 6, She'ar Avot haTum'ah - Chapter 7, She'ar Avot haTum'ah - Chapter 8

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She'ar Avot haTum'ah - Chapter 6

1

The impurity of false deities is of Rabbinic origin. There is an allusion to it in the Torah Genesis 35:2: "Remove the foreign gods that are in your midst. Purify yourselves and change your garments."

There are four primary categories of ritual impurity associated with the worship of false deities: the false deities themselves, their accessories, something offered to it, and a wine libation offered to it. The impurity associated with all of these is of Rabbinic origin.

א

טֻמְאַת עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים וְיֵשׁ לָהּ רֶמֶז בַּתּוֹרָה (בראשית לה ב) "הָסִרוּ אֶת אֱלֹהֵי הַנֵּכָר אֲשֶׁר בְּתֹכְכֶם וְהִטַּהֲרוּ וְהַחֲלִיפוּ שִׂמְלֹתֵיכֶם". וְאַרְבָּעָה אֲבוֹת הַטֻּמְאוֹת יֵשׁ בָּהּ. עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה עַצְמָהּ. וּמְשַׁמְּשֶׁיהָ. וְתִקְרֹבֶת שֶׁלָּהּ. וְיַיִן שֶׁנִּתְנַסֵּךְ לָהּ. וְטֻמְאַת כֻּלָּן מִדִּבְרֵיהֶן:

2

A false deity itself imparts impurity to persons and keilim when touched and to an earthenware container, when it enters its inner space. Like the carcass of a teeming animal, it does not impart impurity when carried, as implied by Deuteronomy 7:26: "You shall certainly regard it as disgusting." The minimum measure that imparts impurity is an olive-sized portion; it should not be more stringent than a portion of a corpse. If an image is less than an olive in size, it is pure.

ב

עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה עַצְמָהּ מְטַמְּאָה אָדָם וְכֵלִים בְּמַגָּע וּכְלֵי חֶרֶס בָּאֲוִיר וְאֵינָהּ מְטַמְּאָה בְּמַשָּׂא כְּשֶׁרֶץ שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים ז כו) "שַׁקֵּץ תְּשַׁקְּצֶנּוּ". וְשִׁעוּרָהּ כְּזַיִת לֹא תִּהְיֶה זוֹ חֲמוּרָה מִן הַמֵּת. אֲבָל אִם הָיְתָה הַצּוּרָה פְּחוּתָה מִכְּזַיִת טְהוֹרָה:

3

If one cut off a limb from it, even if it is as large as the steering rod of a plow, it is pure. The rationale is that a false deity does not impart impurity when separated into limbs, only when the entire image is intact, as can be inferred from Isaiah 30:22: "Cast your idols away like someone impure." Just as the limbs of an impure person do not impart impurity, so too, the limbs of a false deity do not impart impurity.

Its impurity was established according to the leniencies applying to all the primary categories of impurity. Since its impurity is of Rabbinic origin, it was considered as the carcass of a teeming animal in that it does not impart impurity when carried, like a corpse in that an olive-sized portion is required, and like a nidah in that a limb of it does not impart impurity.

ג

קָצַץ אֵיבָר מִמֶּנָּה אֲפִלּוּ הָיָה כְּמַרְדֵּעַ הֲרֵי זֶה טָהוֹר שֶׁעֲבוֹדָה זָרָה אֵינָהּ מְטַמְּאָה לְאֵיבָרִים אֶלָּא הַצּוּרָה כֻּלָּהּ כְּשֶׁהִיא שְׁלֵמָה שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ישעיה ל כב) "תִּזְרֵם כְּמוֹ דָוָה" מָה דָּוָה אֵינָהּ מְטַמְּאָה לְאֵיבָרִים אַף עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה אֵינָהּ מְטַמְּאָה לְאֵיבָרִים. כְּקֻלֵּי אֲבוֹת הַטֻּמְאוֹת דָּנוּ בָּהּ מִפְּנֵי שֶׁטֻּמְאָתָהּ מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם עֲשָׂאוּהָ כְּשֶׁרֶץ שֶׁאֵינוֹ מְטַמֵּא בְּמַשָּׂא וּכְמֵת שֶׁאֵינוֹ מְטַמֵּא אֶלָּא בִּכְזַיִת וּכְנִדָּה שֶׁאֵינָהּ מְטַמְּאָה לְאֵיבָרִים:

4

When a false deity was separated into parts, even though it could be reassembled by an ordinary person and all of its parts are present, it does not impart impurity.

ד

נִתְפָּרְקָה עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהַהֶדְיוֹט יָכוֹל לְהַחְזִירָהּ וַהֲרֵי כָּל אֵיבָרֶיהָ קַיָּמִים אֵינָהּ מְטַמְּאָה:

5

All of the accessories of a false deity are like the carcass of a teeming animal. They impart impurity to persons and keilim when touched and to an earthenware container, when they enter its inner space. They do not impart impurity when carried. The minimum measure that imparts impurity is an olive-sized portion. Even if one cut off an olive-sized portion from an implement, it imparts impurity like the carcass of a teeming animal. In this context, the law applying to the accessories of a false deity is more stringent than that applying to the false deity itself.

With regard to a shrine in which a false deity is worshiped: Its stones, its beams, and its earth all impart impurity when an olive-sized portion of them is touched, as all of the other accessories of a false deity.

ה

כָּל מְשַׁמְּשֵׁי עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה כְּשֶׁרֶץ מְטַמְּאִין אָדָם וְכֵלִים בְּמַגָּע וּכְלֵי חֶרֶס בַּאֲוִיר וְאֵינָן מְטַמְּאִין בְּמַשָּׂא. וְשִׁעוּר טֻמְאָתָן בִּכְזַיִת וַאֲפִלּוּ קִצֵּץ מִמְּשַׁמְּשֶׁיהָ כְּזַיִת מִן הַכְּלִי מְטַמֵּא כְּשֶׁרֶץ. זוֹ חֹמֶר בִּמְשַׁמְּשֶׁיהָ יוֹתֵר מֵעֲבוֹדָה זָרָה עַצְמָהּ. וּבֵית עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה עַצְמוֹ אֲבָנָיו וְעֵצָיו וַעֲפָרוֹ מְטַמְּאִין בִּכְזַיִת בְּמַגָּע כְּכָל הַמְשַׁמְּשִׁין:

6

When a person inserts his head and the majority of his body into a shrine of a false deity, he becomes impure, as if he touched it. Similarly, if the inner space of an earthenware vessel was brought inside a shrine of a false deity, it becomes impure. When the greater portion of a bench or a couch was brought into a shrine of a false deity, it contracts impurity. They are considered as primary derivatives of impurity.

ו

הַמַּכְנִיס רֹאשׁוֹ וְרֻבּוֹ לְבֵית עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה נִטְמָא כְּנוֹגֵעַ. וְכֵן כְּלִי חֶרֶס שֶׁהִכְנִיס אֲוִירוֹ לְבֵית עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה נִטְמָא. סַפְסָלִים וְקָתֵדְרָאוֹת שֶׁהִכְנִיס רֻבָּן לְבֵית עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה טְמֵאִים וְכֻלָּן רִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה:

7

An offering brought to a false deity imparts impurity when touched and when carried like the carcass of a dead animal. The minimum measure that imparts impurity is an olive-sized portion.

Any entity offered to a false deity, whether meat or other foods or beverages, is considered like an animal carcass, for Scripture Psalms 106:28 refers to them as "sacrifices of the dead." Although foods that were sacrificed to false deities may never be nullified in a manner that enables one to benefit from them, if their connection with the false deity was nullified, it is questionable whether or not they impart impurity. When, by contrast, the connection between an implement offered to a false deity and that deity was nullified, it is pure. Similarly, a false deity and its accessories that were nullified are pure.

ז

תִּקְרֹבֶת עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה מְטַמְּאָה בְּמַגָּע וּבְמַשָּׂא כִּנְבֵלָה וְשִׁעוּרָהּ בִּכְזַיִת. כָּל דָּבָר שֶׁמַּקְרִיבִין לָהּ בֵּין בָּשָׂר בֵּין שְׁאָר אֳכָלִים וּמַשְׁקִין הַכּל כִּנְבֵלָה שֶׁהַכָּתוּב קְרָאָן (תהילים קו כח) "זִבְחֵי מֵתִים". וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵין תִּקְרֹבֶת עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה שֶׁל אֳכָלִין בְּטֵלִין לְעוֹלָם לְהַתִּירָהּ בַּהֲנָאָה אִם בִּטְּלָה הֲרֵי זוֹ סָפֵק לְטֻמְאָה. אֲבָל כְּלִי שֶׁהוּא תִּקְרֹבֶת עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה שֶׁבִּטְּלוֹ טָהוֹר וְכֵן עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה וּמְשַׁמְּשֶׁיהָ שֶׁבִּטְּלָן טְהוֹרִין:

8

When wine was poured as a libation to a false deity, it imparts impurity to persons and keilim when touched and to an earthenware container, when it enters its inner space. It imparts impurity to a person when carried, as an animal carcass does. The minimum measure for its impurity is an olive-sized portion, as can be inferred from Deuteronomy 32:38: "Who eat the fat of its sacrifices, who drink the wine of its libations."

This impurity is imparted only by wine that was poured out by hand before a false deity. Ordinary wine belonging to a non-Jew imparts a lesser impurity like all other impure beverages.

ח

יַיִן שֶׁנִּתְנַסֵּךְ לַעֲבוֹדָה זָרָה מְטַמֵּא אָדָם וְכֵלִים בְּמַגָּע וּכְלֵי חֶרֶס בַּאֲוִיר. וּמְטַמֵּא אָדָם בְּמַשָּׂא כִּנְבֵלָה וְטֻמְאָתוֹ בִּכְזַיִת שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים לב לח) "אֲשֶׁר חֵלֶב זְבָחֵימוֹ יֹאכֵלוּ יִשְׁתּוּ יֵין נְסִיכָם" הֲרֵי יֵין נְסִיכָם כְּחֵלֶב זְבָחֵימוֹ. וְאֵין מְטַמֵּא טֻמְאָה זוֹ אֶלָּא יַיִן שֶׁנִּתְנַסֵּךְ בַּיָּד לִפְנֵי עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה אֲבָל סְתָם יֵינָן שֶׁל עַכּוּ''ם מְטַמֵּא טֻמְאָה קַלָּה כִּשְׁאָר כָּל מַשְׁקִין טְמֵאִין:

9

From everything that we have explained from the beginning of this book until here, one may conclude that there are primary categories of impurity, some of Scriptural origin and some of Rabbinic origin.

ט

מִכָּל הַדְּבָרִים שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ מִתְּחִלַּת הַסֵּפֶר עַד כָּאן אַתָּה לָמֵד שֶׁאֲבוֹת הַטֻּמְאוֹת מֵהֶן אָבוֹת שֶׁל תּוֹרָה וּמֵהֶן אָבוֹת שֶׁל דִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים:

10

Any entity that contracts impurity from a primary source of impurity of Scriptural origin is considered as a derivative of impurity of Scriptural origin. Any entity that contracts impurity from a primary source of impurity of Rabbinic origin is considered as a derivative of impurity of Rabbinic origin.

י

כָּל הַמִּתְטַמֵּא מֵחֲמַת אָב שֶׁל תּוֹרָה הֲרֵי הוּא וְלַד טֻמְאָה שֶׁל תּוֹרָה וְכָל הַמִּתְטַמֵּא מֵחֲמַת אָב שֶׁל דִּבְרֵיהֶם הֲרֵי זֶה וָלָד שֶׁל דִּבְרֵיהֶם:

11

Any primary source of impurity - whether of Scriptural or Rabbinic origin - that imparts impurity through touch, but does not impart impurity when carried, does not impart impurity to the clothes a person who touches it is wearing even while he is touching the source of impurity. Nor does he impart impurity to another person or to earthenware utensils even though he has not yet separated himself from the source of impurity. Both after and before he separates himself from the source of impurity, his status is that of a derivative of impurity who imparts impurity to foods and makes them a secondary derivative of impurity, for he is a primary derivative.

יא

כָּל אַב טֻמְאָה שֶׁמְּטַמֵּא בְּמַגָּע וְאֵינוֹ מְטַמֵּא בְּמַשָּׂא בֵּין אָב שֶׁל תּוֹרָה בֵּין אָב שֶׁל דִּבְרֵיהֶם אָדָם הַנּוֹגֵעַ בּוֹ אֵינוֹ מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים בִּשְׁעַת מַגָּעוֹ. וְלֹא אָדָם וְלֹא כְּלִי חֶרֶס אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁעֲדַיִן לֹא פֵּרַשׁ מִמְּטַמְּאָיו. וְהִנּוֹ אַחַר שֶׁפֵּרַשׁ מִמְּטַמְּאָיו אוֹ קֹדֶם שֶׁיִּפְרשׁ וָלָד שֶׁהוּא מְטַמֵּא אֳכָלִין וְעוֹשֶׂה אוֹתָן שֵׁנִי לְטֻמְאָה מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהוּא רִאשׁוֹן:

12

When a person touches or carries any primary source of impurity - whether of Scriptural or Rabbinic origin - that imparts impurity through touch or when carried, that person imparts impurity to his clothes at the time he is touching the source of impurity or carrying it. He causes the garments to be considered as a primary derivative of impurity. Similarly, if he touches foods, he makes them a primary derivative of impurity as long as he has not ceased contact with the source of his impurity. If he ceases contact with the source of his impurity, he is considered as a primary derivative of impurity in all contexts and he does not impart impurity to his garments. If he touches foods, they are deemed as secondary derivatives.

When does the above apply? With regard to all the primary sources of impurity with the exception of an animal carcass and a surface on which a zav rides. With regard to these two sources of impurity, even though they impart impurity when touched or when carried, a person who touches them does not impart impurity to his clothes when he is touching them. If he touches foods, they are secondary derivatives of impurity. One who carries such entities imparts impurity to his clothes when carrying them. If he touches foods before he separates from the source of his impurity, they are primary derivatives of impurity, as we explained.

יב

וְכָל אַב טֻמְאָה שֶׁמְּטַמֵּא בְּמַגָּע וּבְמַשָּׂא בֵּין אָב שֶׁל תּוֹרָה בֵּין אָב שֶׁל דִּבְרֵיהֶם אָדָם הַנּוֹגֵעַ בּוֹ אוֹ הַנּוֹשְׂאוֹ מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים בִּשְׁעַת מַגָּעוֹ וּבִשְׁעַת נְשִׂיאָתוֹ וְעוֹשֶׂה אוֹתָן רִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה. וְכֵן אִם נָגַע בָּאֳכָלִין עֲשָׂאָן רִאשׁוֹן כָּל זְמַן שֶׁלֹּא פֵּרַשׁ מִמְּטַמְּאָיו. פֵּרַשׁ מִמְּטַמְּאָיו הֲרֵי הוּא רִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה לְכָל דָּבָר וְאֵינוֹ מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים וְאִם נָגַע בָּאֳכָלִין הֲרֵי הֵן שֵׁנִי. בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בִּשְׁאָר כָּל הָאָבוֹת חוּץ מִן הַנְּבֵלוֹת וְהַמֶּרְכָּב. אֲבָל הַנְּבֵלָה וְהַמֶּרְכָּב אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁמְּטַמְּאִין בְּמַגָּע וּבְמַשָּׂא הַנּוֹגֵעַ בָּהֶן אֵינוֹ מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים בִּשְׁעַת מַגָּעוֹ וְאִם נָגַע בָּאֳכָלִין הֲרֵי הֵן שֵׁנִי לְטֻמְאָה. וְהַנּוֹשֵׂא מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים בִּשְׁעַת נְשִׂיאָתוֹ וְאִם נָגַע בָּאֳכָלִין עַד שֶׁלֹּא פֵּרַשׁ הִנָּם רִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ:

13

When there is a sufficient amount of water upon which the ashes of the red heifer have been placed to sprinkle it, it is considered like an animal carcass and a surface on which a zav rides and only one who carries it imparts impurity to his garments. Nevertheless, one who touches such water imparts impurity to his garments while touching them, because it is as if he is carrying the water. For it is impossible to touch water without moving it and we have already explained that the laws that apply to carrying a source of impurity also apply when moving it.

Similarly, one who touches the wool of an animal carcass or who touches the strands protruding from a surface on which a zav rides imparts impurity to his clothes when he touches these entities because it is as if he is carrying them. For it is impossible to touch them without moving them. Therefore he imparts impurity to his garments until he separates himself from the source of impurity like one who carries.

יג

מֵי חַטָּאת שֶׁיֵּשׁ בָּהֶן כְּדֵי הַזָּאָה אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהֵן כִּנְבֵלָה וּכְמֶרְכָּב שֶׁאֵין מְטַמְּאִין בְּגָדִים אֶלָּא הַנּוֹשְׂאָן הֲרֵי הַנּוֹגֵעַ בָּהֶן מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים בִּשְׁעַת מַגָּעוֹ מִשּׁוּם נוֹשֵׂא שֶׁאִי אֶפְשָׁר שֶׁיִּגַּע בַּמַּיִם שֶׁלֹּא יָסִיט אוֹתָן. וּכְבָר בֵּאַרְנוּ שֶׁאֶחָד הַנּוֹשֵׂא וְאֶחָד הַמֵּסִיט. וְכֵן הַנּוֹגֵעַ בְּצֶמֶר הַנְּבֵלָה אוֹ שֶׁנָּגַע בְּנִימֵי הַמֶּרְכָּב מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים בִּשְׁעַת מַגָּעוֹ מִשּׁוּם נוֹשֵׂא. שֶׁאִי אֶפְשָׁר לִנְגֹּעַ בִּדְבָרִים אֵלּוּ שֶׁלֹּא יָסִיט אוֹתָן. וּלְפִיכָךְ מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים עַד שֶׁלֹּא פֵּרַשׁ כְּדִין הַנּוֹשֵׂא:

14

When one swallows the carcass of a fowl from a kosher species, he imparts impurity to his garments at the time he swallows it as we explained. They are considered as primary derivatives of impurity. Similarly, if he touches foods at that time, they are primary derivatives of impurity. After he swallows it, he is considered to have separated from the entity that imparted impurity to him.

יד

הַבּוֹלֵעַ נִבְלַת עוֹף הַטָּהוֹר בִּשְׁעַת בְּלִיעָתוֹ מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ וְהֵן רִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה. וְכֵן אִם נָגַע בָּאֳכָלִין הֲרֵי הֵן רִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה. וְאַחַר שֶׁבָּלַע הֲרֵי זֶה פֵּרַשׁ מִמְּטַמְּאָיו:

15

Although all of the following - one who burns the red heifer or the goats that are burnt and one who sends away the goat to Azazel - impart impurity to their garments while performing their tasks, as we explained, if they touched foods, even while performing their tasks, the foods are deemed a secondary derivative of impurity.

טו

הַשּׂוֹרֵף פָּרָה אֲדֻמָּה וּשְׂעִירִים הַנִּשְׂרָפִים וְהַמְשַׁלֵּחַ אֶת הַשָּׂעִיר אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁבִּשְׁעַת מַעֲשֵׂיהֶן מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ. אִם נָגְעוּ בָּאֳכָלִין אֲפִלּוּ בִּשְׁעַת מַעֲשֵׂיהֶן הֲרֵי הֵן שֵׁנִי לְטֻמְאָה:

16

When a person touches a primary source of impurity that had been cast into a mikveh, e.g., an animal carcass, the carcass of a teeming animal, or a surface on which a zav rides was in a mikveh and a person touched it, he is impure, as can be inferred from Leviticus 11:36: "But a spring and a cistern in which water collects will be pure. One who touches their carcasses contracts impurity." Implied is that even when they are in a mikveh, they impart impurity. When the person who touched the source of impurity immerses and ascends from the mikveh, he is pure.

Similarly, if a zav treads on a surface on which one rides that was pure while it was found in a mikveh, the surface contracts impurity. When the surface is lifted up from the mikveh, it regains purity, for it is considered as if it was immersed.

When an individual who touches an impure surface on which one rides while he was in a mikveh sticks his hand outside the mikveh and touches objects, he imparts impurity to garments. Needless to say, he imparts impurity to foods and beverages.

טז

הַנּוֹגֵעַ בְּאָב מֵאֲבוֹת הַטֻּמְאוֹת הַמֻּשְׁלָךְ בְּתוֹךְ הַמִּקְוֶה. כְּגוֹן נְבֵלָה אוֹ שֶׁרֶץ אוֹ מִשְׁכָּב שֶׁהוּא בְּמִקְוֶה וְנָגַע בּוֹ הֲרֵי זֶה טָמֵא. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ויקרא יא לו) "אַךְ מַעְיָן וּבוֹר מִקְוֵה מַיִם יִהְיֶה טָהוֹר וְנֹגֵעַ בְּנִבְלָתָם יִטְמָא" אֲפִלּוּ כְּשֶׁהֵן בְּתוֹךְ הַמִּקְוֶה מְטַמְּאִין. וּכְשֶׁיַּעֲלֶה מִן הַמִּקְוֶה זֶה הַנּוֹגֵעַ יִטְהַר. [וְהַנּוֹשְׂאָן מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים בִּשְׁעַת נְשִׂיאָתָן. וְאִם נָגַע בָּאֳכָלִים עַד שֶׁלֹּא פֵּרַשׁ הֲרֵי הֵן רִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ]. וְכֵן זָב שֶׁדָּרַס עַל הַמִּשְׁכָּב שֶׁהוּא מֻנָּח בַּמִּקְוֶה הֲרֵי הַמִּשְׁכָּב טָמֵא. וּכְשֶׁיַּעֲלֶה הַמִּשְׁכָּב מִן הַמִּקְוֶה יִטְהַר שֶׁהֲרֵי עָלְתָה לוֹ טְבִילָה וְזֶה הַנּוֹגֵעַ בַּמִּשְׁכָּב כְּשֶׁהוּא בַּמִּקְוֶה אִם פָּשַׁט יָדוֹ וְנוֹגֵעַ חוּץ לַמִּקְוֶה הֲרֵי זֶה מְטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים וְאֵין צָרִיךְ לוֹמַר שֶׁהוּא מְטַמֵּא אֳכָלִין וּמַשְׁקִין:

She'ar Avot haTum'ah - Chapter 7

1

It is explicitly stated in the Torah that foods and liquids contract ritual impurity, as Leviticus 11:34 states: "Of all foods that will be eaten that were exposed to water will become impure and any beverage which one will drink in any vessel will become impure."

Food that contracted impurity does not impart impurity to other foods according to Scriptural Law. Nor do liquids that contracted impurity impart impurity to other entities according to Scriptural Law. Nevertheless, according to Rabbinic Law, it was decreed that impure food that touched other foods would impart impurity to them. Similarly, if impure foods touched liquids, the liquids are impure. Food does not, by contrast, ever impart impurity to a container that it touches even according to Rabbinic Law. Similarly, the Sages decreed that impure liquids should impart impurity to foods, liquids, and keilim that they touch.

א

דָבָר מְפֹרָשׁ בַּתּוֹרָה שֶׁהָאֳכָלִין וְהַמַּשְׁקִין מִתְטַמְּאִין שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ויקרא יא לד) "מִכָּל הָאֹכֶל אֲשֶׁר יֵאָכֵל אֲשֶׁר יָבוֹא עָלָיו מַיִם יִטְמָא וְכָל מַשְׁקֶה אֲשֶׁר יִשָּׁתֶה בְּכָל כְּלִי יִטְמָא". וְאֵין הָאֹכֶל שֶׁנִּטְמָא מְטַמֵּא אֹכֶל אַחֵר מִן הַתּוֹרָה. וְלֹא הַמַּשְׁקִין שֶׁנִּטְמְאוּ מְטַמְּאִין דָּבָר אַחֵר מִן הַתּוֹרָה. אֲבָל מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים גָּזְרוּ עַל הָאֹכֶל הַטָּמֵא שֶׁאִם נָגַע בְּאֹכֶל אַחֵר טִמְּאָהוּ. וְכֵן אִם נָגַע אֹכֶל הַטָּמֵא בְּמַשְׁקִין טְמֵאִין. וְאֵין אֹכֶל מְטַמֵּא כְּלִי שֶׁנָּגַע בּוֹ לְעוֹלָם וַאֲפִלּוּ מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם. וְכֵן גָּזְרוּ עַל הַמַּשְׁקִין הַטְּמֵאִים שֶׁיְּטַמְּאוּ אֳכָלִין אוֹ מַשְׁקִין אוֹ כֵּלִים שֶׁנָּגְעוּ בָּהֶן:

2

There are no derivatives of impurity that impart impurity to keilim other than impure liquids. This impurity is a Rabbinic decree. It applies provided the original source of the liquid's impurity is a primary category of impurity, whether of Scriptural or Rabbinic origin.

Why did they decree that impure liquids should impart impurity to keilim? Because of a similarity to the liquids that emanate from a zav, which are a primary source of impurity and impart impurity to keilim according to Scriptural Law, as ibid. 15:8 states: "When a zav shall spit on a person who is pure," as we explained.

ב

אֵין לְךָ וְלַד טֻמְאָה שֶׁמְּטַמֵּא כֵּלִים אֶלָּא מַשְׁקִין טְמֵאִים בִּלְבַד. וְטֻמְאָה זוֹ מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם וְהוּא שֶׁיִּהְיוּ אוֹתָן הַמַּשְׁקִין טְמֵאִין מֵחֲמַת אָב מֵאֲבוֹת הַטֻּמְאוֹת בֵּין שֶׁל תּוֹרָה בֵּין שֶׁל דִּבְרֵיהֶם. וּמִפְּנֵי מָה גָּזְרוּ עַל הַמַּשְׁקִין טְמֵאִין שֶׁיְּטַמְּאוּ כֵּלִים גְּזֵרָה מִשּׁוּם מַשְׁקֵה הַזָּב שֶׁהוּא אָב וּמְטַמֵּא כֵּלִים דִּין תּוֹרָה. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ויקרא טו ח) "וְכִי יָרֹק הַזָּב בַּטָּהוֹר" כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ:

3

When the Sages decreed that impure liquids should impart impurity to containers, they decreed that they should impart impurity from their inner surfaces.

What is implied? If impure liquids fell into the inner space of an earthenware container, it becomes impure in its entirety. It is considered as a secondary derivative. If they touch other containers on their inner surface, they become impure in their entirety and are considered as secondary derivatives of impurity. If, however, impure liquids touch the outer surface of a container, whether it be an earthenware container, a k'li that can be purified by immersion, or a metal k'li, only the outer surface becomes impure. The outer surface is considered as a secondary derivative, but its inner surface does not become impure.

In what context does the above apply? To terumah. For sacrificial foods, by contrast, when the outside of a container becomes impure, it becomes impure in its entirety and it is considered a secondary derivative of impurity in its entirety.

ג

כְּשֶׁגָּזְרוּ עַל הַמַּשְׁקִין שֶׁיְּטַמְּאוּ אֶת הַכֵּלִים גָּזְרוּ שֶׁיִּהְיוּ מְטַמְּאִין אֶת הַכֵּלִים מִתּוֹכָן. כֵּיצַד. אִם נָפְלוּ לַאֲוִיר כְּלִי חֶרֶס נִטְמָא כֻּלּוֹ וַהֲרֵי הוּא שֵׁנִי וְאִם נָגְעוּ בִּשְׁאָר כֵּלִים מִתּוֹכָן מְטַמֵּא כֻּלָּן וְנַעֲשׂוּ שְׁנִיִּים. אֲבָל אִם נָגְעוּ מַשְׁקִין טְמֵאִים בַּאֲחוֹרֵי הַכְּלִי שֶׁיֵּשׁ לוֹ תּוֹךְ בֵּין בִּכְלִי חֶרֶס בֵּין בִּכְלִי שֶׁטֶף וּכְלִי מַתָּכוֹת נִטְמְאוּ אֲחוֹרָיו בִּלְבַד וַהֲרֵי אֲחוֹרָיו שֵׁנִי וְלֹא נִטְמָא תּוֹכוֹ. בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים לִתְרוּמָה. אֲבָל לְקֹדֶשׁ כְּלִי שֶׁנִּטְמְאוּ אֲחוֹרָיו נִטְמָא כֻּלּוֹ וַהֲרֵי כֻּלּוֹ שֵׁנִי לְטֻמְאָה:

4

We already explained, that foods do not impart impurity to utensils, but that liquids do. Why did our Sages make the above distinction - that when the outer surface of a container was touched by impure liquids, its inner surface does not become impure for terumah? To make it known that the impurity of these keilim is a Rabbinic institution so that terumah and sacrificial foods will not be burnt as a result.

ד

כְּבָר בֵּאַרְנוּ שֶׁהָאֳכָלִין אֵין מְטַמְּאִין כֵּלִים וְהַמַּשְׁקִין מְטַמְּאִין. וְלָמָּה עָשׂוּ בְּטֻמְאַת מַשְׁקִין הֶכֵּר זֶה וְאָמְרוּ שֶׁהַכְּלִי שֶׁנָּגְעוּ מַשְׁקִין טְמֵאִין בַּאֲחוֹרָיו לֹא נִטְמָא תּוֹכוֹ לִתְרוּמָה. לְהוֹדִיעַ שֶׁטֻּמְאַת כֵּלִים אֵלּוּ מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם שֶׁלֹּא יִשְׂרְפוּ עָלֶיהָ תְּרוּמָה וְקָדָשִׁים:

5

We already explained that foods and liquids that touch one of the primary sources of impurity become primary derivatives of impurity. Similarly, if food touched a person or a k'li that had contracted impurity from a source of impurity, that food becomes a second derivative of impurity. Food that touches this secondary derivative is considered a tertiary derivative of impurity and if the tertiary derivative touches a fourth food, it is considered a fourth degree derivative of impurity.

To what does the above apply? To foods. With regard to liquids, by contrast, whether a liquid touches a primary source of impurity, a primary derivative or a secondary derivative, that liquid is considered as a primary derivative. It imparts impurity to another liquid, which in turn can impart impurity to another liquid, even if there is a chain of a hundred. For there is no concept of degrees of impurity with regard to liquids.

What is implied? When wine touched a primary source of impurity or a primary or secondary derivative, the wine is considered as a primary derivative of impurity. Similarly, if this wine touched oil, that oil touched milk, that milk touched honey, that honey touched water, and that water touched wine, in an endless chain, all the liquids are considered as primary derivatives. It is as if each one of them contracted impurity from a primary source. They all impart impurity to keilim. Similarly, if the outer surface of a container contracted impurity from a liquid and other liquids touched that impure outer surface, even if the other liquids are not sacred, the other liquids are considered as a primary derivative of impurity and impart impurity to other containers, making them secondary derivatives of impurity. Needless to say, they impart impurity to other foods and liquids.

ה

כְּבָר בֵּאַרְנוּ שֶׁהָאֳכָלִין וְהַמַּשְׁקִין שֶׁנָּגְעוּ בְּאָב מֵאֲבוֹת הַטֻּמְאוֹת הֲרֵי הֵן רִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה. וְכֵן אִם נָגַע אֹכֶל בְּאָדָם אוֹ בִּכְלִי שֶׁנִּטְמָא בְּאָב הֲרֵי אוֹתוֹ הָאֹכֶל שֵׁנִי לְטֻמְאָה. וְאֹכֶל שֶׁנָּגַע בְּזֶה הַשֵּׁנִי נִקְרָא שְׁלִישִׁי לְטֻמְאָה. וְאִם נָגַע הַשְּׁלִישִׁי בְּאֹכֶל (רְבִיעִי) הֲרֵי זֶה נִקְרָא רְבִיעִי לְטֻמְאָה. בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בָּאֳכָלִין. אֲבָל הַמַּשְׁקִין אֶחָד מַשְׁקֶה שֶׁנָּגַע בְּאַב הַטֻּמְאָה אוֹ שֶׁנָּגַע בְּרִאשׁוֹן אוֹ שֶׁנָּגַע בְּשֵׁנִי הֲרֵי אוֹתוֹ הַמַּשְׁקֶה תְּחִלָּה לְטֻמְאָה וּמְטַמֵּא אֶת חֲבֵרוֹ וַחֲבֵרוֹ אֶת חֲבֵרוֹ אֲפִלּוּ הֵן מֵאָה שֶׁאֵין מוֹנִין בְּמַשְׁקִין. כֵּיצַד. יַיִן שֶׁנָּגַע בְּאַב הַטֻּמְאָה אוֹ בְּרִאשׁוֹן אוֹ בְּשֵׁנִי הֲרֵי יַיִן זֶה כְּרִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה. וְכֵן אִם נָגַע יַיִן זֶה בְּשֶׁמֶן וְשֶׁמֶן בְּחָלָב וְחָלָב בִּדְבַשׁ וּדְבַשׁ בְּמַיִם וּמַיִם בְּיַיִן אַחֵר וְכֵן עַד לְעוֹלָם כֻּלָּן רִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה וּכְאִלּוּ כָּל אֶחָד מֵהֶן נִטְמָא בְּאָב תְּחִלָּה וְכֻלָּן מְטַמְּאִין אֶת הַכֵּלִים. וְכֵן כְּלִי שֶׁנִּטְמְאוּ אֲחוֹרָיו בְּמַשְׁקִין וְנָגְעוּ מַשְׁקִין אֲחֵרִים בַּאֲחוֹרֵי הַכֵּלִים הַטְּמֵאִין אֲפִלּוּ הָיוּ מַשְׁקִין חֻלִּין נַעֲשׂוּ הַמַּשְׁקִין הָאֲחֵרִים תְּחִלָּה לְטֻמְאָה וּמְטַמְּאִין כֵּלִים אֲחֵרִים וְעוֹשִׂין אוֹתָן שְׁנִיִּים וְאֵין צָרִיךְ לוֹמַר שֶׁהֵן מְטַמְּאִין אֳכָלִין וּמַשְׁקִין אֲחֵרִים:

6

When the outer surface of a container contracted impurity and then foods - even food that are terumah - touched this impure outer surface, the foods are pure. For when only the outer surface of a container contracts impurity, it does not impart impurity to foods with the exception of sacrificial foods. For when the outer surface of a container contracts impurity, it is considered as entirely impure with regard to sacrificial foods, as we explained. Therefore, it imparts impurity to sacrificial foods.

ו

אֲחוֹרֵי הַכְּלִי שֶׁנִּטְמְאוּ בְּמַשְׁקִין וְנָגְעוּ אֳכָלִין בַּאֲחוֹרֵי הַכְּלִי הַטָּמֵא אֲפִלּוּ אָכְלֵי תְּרוּמָה הֲרֵי הֵן טְהוֹרִין שֶׁהַכְּלִי שֶׁנִּטְמְאוּ אֲחוֹרָיו בִּלְבַד אֵינוֹ מְטַמֵּא אֶת הָאֳכָלִין אֶלָּא לְקֹדֶשׁ בִּלְבַד שֶׁהַכְּלִי שֶׁנִּטְמְאוּ אֲחוֹרָיו הֲרֵי זֶה טָמֵא כֻּלּוֹ לְקֹדֶשׁ כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ וּלְפִיכָךְ מְטַמֵּא אֹכֶל הַקֹּדֶשׁ:

She'ar Avot haTum'ah - Chapter 8

1

Whenever one touches a primary derivative of impurity with his hands, whether that primary derivative was an impure person, k'li, food, or liquid, his hands - until his joints - alone become impure. Similarly, if a person inserts his hands into the inner space of an earthenware container that contracted impurity from a primary source of impurity or he inserted his hands into a house that is deemed impure due to tzara'at, his hands become impure. The impurity of hands is a Rabbinic decree.

א

כָּל הַנּוֹגֵעַ בְּיָדָיו בְּרִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה בֵּין שֶׁהָיָה אוֹתוֹ רִאשׁוֹן אָדָם אוֹ כְּלִי אוֹ אֹכֶל אוֹ מַשְׁקִין טְמֵאִין נִטְמְאוּ יָדָיו בִּלְבַד עַד הַפֶּרֶק. וְכֵן הַמַּכְנִיס יָדָיו לַאֲוִיר כְּלִי חֶרֶס שֶׁנִּטְמָא בְּאַב הַטֻּמְאָה אוֹ שֶׁהִכְנִיס יָדָיו לְבַיִת מְנֻגָּע נִטְמְאוּ יָדָיו. וְטֻמְאַת הַיָּדָיִם מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים:

2

Hands that contracted impurity are always considered as a secondary derivative according to Rabbinic Law. For their impurity is a Rabbinic decree, and when it was decreed that they would be impure, it was decreed that their status would be that of a secondary derivative. Even when one inserts his hands into a house that is deemed impure due to tzara'at or touches with his hands a person who imparts impurity to his garments before that person has separated himself from the source of his impurity, the person's hands are secondary derivatives.

ב

הַיָּדָיִם שְׁנִיּוֹת מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים לְעוֹלָם שֶׁאֵין טֻמְאָתָן אֶלָּא מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם וּכְשֶׁגָּזְרוּ טֻמְאָה עֲלֵיהֶן גָּזְרוּ שֶׁיִּהְיוּ כְּשֵׁנִי לְטֻמְאָה. אֲפִלּוּ הִכְנִיס יָדָיו לְבַיִת הַמְנֻגָּע אוֹ שֶׁנָּגַע בְּיָדָיו בְּאָדָם שֶׁמְּטַמֵּא בְּגָדִים עַד שֶׁלֹּא פֵּרַשׁ מִמְּטַמְּאָיו הֲרֵי יָדָיו שְׁנִיּוֹת:

3

Piggul, notar, and remnants of flour from the meal offerings are considered as primary derivatives of impurity. Primary and secondary derivatives are counted if other entities come in contact with them. Therefore, an egg-sized portion of them imparts impurity to hands.

Piggul and notar may not be combined to reach an egg-sized measure even though they both share that same measure. The rationale is that the impurity of hands is a Rabbinic safeguard. Other impure foods, by contrast, are combined to reach that measure. For impure foods do not impart impurity unless there is an egg-sized portion present.

ג

הַפִּגּוּל וְהַנּוֹתָר וְצָרִיד שֶׁל מְנָחוֹת הֲרֵי הֵן כְּרִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה וּמוֹנִין בָּהֶן רִאשׁוֹן וְשֵׁנִי לְפִיכָךְ מְטַמְּאִין אֶת הַיָּדָיִם בִּכְבֵיצָה. וְאֵין הַפִּגּוּל וְהַנּוֹתָר מִצְטָרְפִין אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁשִּׁעוּרָן שָׁוָה בִּכְבֵיצָה הוֹאִיל וְטֻמְאַת הַיָּדַיִם מִדִּבְרֵיהֶן. אֲבָל שְׁאָר הָאֳכָלִין מִצְטָרְפִין שֶׁאֵין אֳכָלִים טְמֵאִין מְטַמְּאִין אֶת הַיָּדַיִם עַד שֶׁיִּהְיוּ כְּבֵיצָה:

4

Even though the thigh bone of a sacrificial animal that was either piggul or notar is intact, when a person touches it with his hands, his hands contract ritual impurity. For the bones of sacrificial animals that became either piggul or notar impart impurity to hands, because they serve as the base for a forbidden entity.

ד

קוּלִית הַפִּגּוּל אוֹ הַנּוֹתָר אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהִיא סְתוּמָה הַנּוֹגֵעַ בָּהּ בְּיָדָיו נִטְמְאוּ יָדָיו שֶׁהָעֲצָמוֹת שֶׁל קָדָשִׁים שֶׁשִּׁמְּשׁוּ נוֹתָר אוֹ פִּגּוּל מְטַמְּאִין אֶת הַיָּדַיִם הוֹאִיל וְנַעֲשׂוּ בָּסִיס לְדָבָר הָאָסוּר:

5

When sacrificial meat is taken outside its appropriate place, there is an unresolved question whether it imparts impurity to hands or not. Therefore, it does not impart impurity, for if there is a doubt with regard to the impurity of hands, they are considered pure, as will be explained. If meat from a Paschal sacrifice was taken outside the home where it is being eaten, it is pure. We assume that the members of the company are vigilant.

ה

בְּשַׂר קֹדֶשׁ שֶׁיָּצָא חוּץ לִמְחִצָּתוֹ הֲרֵי הוּא סָפֵק אִם מְטַמֵּא אֶת הַיָּדַיִם אוֹ לֹא. לְפִיכָךְ אֵינוֹ מְטַמֵּא שֶׁסְּפֵק טֻמְאַת הַיָּדַיִם טָהוֹר כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר. וְאִם בְּשַׂר פֶּסַח שֶׁיָּצָא חוּץ לַבַּיִת הוּא הֲרֵי הוּא טָהוֹר, בְּנֵי חֲבוּרָה זְרִיזִין הֵן:

6

The concept of impurity of hands does not apply in the Temple. At the time that Sages established their decree regarding the impurity of hands, they did not apply it to the Temple. Instead, if a person touches impure foods or the like - whether he touched them in the Temple or outside the Temple - and then touched sacrificial foods in the Temple, he does not impart impurity to them. If he touches sacrificial foods outside the Temple, he imparts impurity to them. Similarly, he disqualifies terumah, as will be explained.

ו

אֵין טֻמְאַת יָדַיִם בַּמִּקְדָּשׁ. שֶׁבְּשָׁעָה שֶׁגָּזְרוּ טֻמְאָה עַל הַיָּדַיִם לֹא גָּזְרוּ בַּמִּקְדָּשׁ אֶלָּא הַנּוֹגֵעַ בָּאֳכָלִין טְמֵאִים וְכַיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן בֵּין שֶׁנָּגַע בַּמִּקְדָּשׁ בֵּין שֶׁנָּגַע חוּץ לַמִּקְדָּשׁ וְנָגַע בְּקָדָשִׁים בַּמִּקְדָּשׁ לֹא טִמְּאָן. וְאִם נָגַע חוּץ לַמִּקְדָּשׁ הֲרֵי זֶה מְטַמֵּא אֶת הַקֹּדֶשׁ וּפוֹסֵל אֶת הַתְּרוּמָה כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר:

7

When one of a person's hands become impure and he touches the other one, the other remains pure. It is sufficient for him to wash the impure hand.

When does the above apply? With regard to terumah. With regard to sacrificial foods, by contrast, if one of a person's hands become impure and he touches the other one, he imparts impurity to the other. Both of them must be immersed in a mikveh before touching sacrificial foods. For terumah, by contrast, it is sufficient to wash one's hands to purify them.

ז

מִי שֶׁנִּטְמֵאת יָדוֹ אַחַת וְנָגְעָה בַּאֲחֶרֶת הָאַחֶרֶת טְהוֹרָה וְנוֹטֵל אֶת הַטְּמֵאָה וְדַיּוֹ. בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים לִתְרוּמָה. אֲבָל לְקֹדֶשׁ אִם נִטְמֵאת יָדוֹ אַחַת וְנָגַע בַּשְּׁנִיָּה טִמְּאָהּ. וּשְׁתֵּיהֶן צְרִיכוֹת טְבִילָה לְקֹדֶשׁ אֲבָל לִתְרוּמָה בִּנְטִילַת יָדַיִם בִּלְבַד יִטָּהֲרוּ יָדָיו:

8

King Solomon and his court decreed that hands are always considered as secondary derivatives of impurity, even if one does not know with certainty that they contracted impurity, for "hands are busy."

Solomon decreed that hands were impure only with regard to sacrificial foods. Afterwards, the later Sages extended the decree also with regard to terumah. Therefore it is necessary to wash one's hands before partaking of terumah. If one touched terumah before he washed his hands, the terumah is disqualified. It is burnt because of this impurity.

ח

שְׁלֹמֹה הַמֶּלֶךְ וּבֵית דִּינוֹ גָּזְרוּ עַל כָּל הַיָּדַיִם שֶׁיִּהְיוּ שְׁנִיּוֹת וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא יָדַע בְּוַדַּאי שֶׁנִּטְמְאוּ מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהַיָּדַיִם עַסְקָנִיּוֹת. וְלֹא גָּזַר שְׁלֹמֹה עַל הַיָּדַיִם טֻמְאָה אֶלָּא לְקֹדֶשׁ. וְאַחַר כָּךְ גָּזְרוּ חֲכָמִים שֶׁאַחֲרָיו אַף לִתְרוּמָה. וּלְפִיכָךְ צָרִיךְ נְטִילַת יָדַיִם לִתְרוּמָה וְאִם נָגַע בִּתְרוּמָה קֹדֶם שֶׁיִּטּל יָדָיו פְּסוּלָה וְנִשְׂרֶפֶת עַל טֻמְאָה זוֹ:

9

A person may wrap his hands in a napkin and partake of terumah without washing his hands. We do not suspect that he will touch the terumah. He should not do this when partaking of ordinary food that is being eaten under the stringencies that apply to the purity of sacrificial food or terumah, lest he touch it, for he is not that careful with regard to it.

ט

לָט אָדָם יָדָיו בְּמַפָּה וְאוֹכֵל תְּרוּמָה בְּלֹא נְטִילַת יָדַיִם וְאֵין חוֹשְׁשִׁין שֶׁמָּא יִגַּע אֲבָל לֹא יַעֲשֶׂה כֵּן בְּחֻלִּין שֶׁנַּעֲשׂוּ עַל טָהֳרַת הַקֹּדֶשׁ אוֹ עַל טָהֳרַת תְּרוּמָה גְּזֵרָה שֶׁמָּא יִגַּע לְפִי שֶׁאֵינוֹ מַקְפִּיד עֲלֵיהֶן:

10

Since a person's hands are considered second degree derivatives of impurity, if they touch liquids, they cause them to be considered as primary derivatives. If such liquids touch foods, they cause them to be considered as secondary derivatives. If such liquids touch other liquids, they cause them to be considered as primary derivatives, for liquids are always considered as primary derivatives, as we explained. Such liquids that contracted impurity due to contact with hands do not impart impurity to keilim, for the fundamental impurity of the hands is of Rabbinic origin.

Similarly, our Sages decreed that any person who partook of impure foods - whether the foods were primary or secondary derivatives of impurity - or who drank impure liquids should be considered as a secondary derivative of impurity until he immerses in a mikveh. If he touches foods, he causes them to be considered as a tertiary derivative. If he touches liquids, even ordinary liquids, he causes them to be considered as a primary derivative and they impart impurity to other foods and liquids. They do not impart impurity to keilim, because the impurity contracted by this person is fundamentally a Rabbinic decree.

Why was it decreed that a person who partakes of impure foods contracts impurity? For perhaps he will partake of food that is a primary or secondary derivative of impurity and, at the same time, drink a liquid that is terumah. The liquid that is terumah will contract impurity from the food in his mouth. Similarly, if a person is drinking impure liquids, there was concern that he might eat food that is terumah with them and impart impurity to it because of the liquids in his mouth. We have already explained in Hilchot Terumah that it is forbidden to partake of impure terumah.

י

הוֹאִיל וְהַיָּדַיִם שְׁנִיּוֹת אִם נָגְעוּ בְּמַשְׁקֶה עֲשָׂאוּם תְּחִלָּה. וְאִם נָגְעוּ מַשְׁקִין אֵלּוּ בָּאֳכָלִין עוֹשִׂין אוֹתָן שֵׁנִי. וְאִם נָגְעוּ בְּמַשְׁקִין אֲחֵרִים עוֹשִׂין אוֹתָן תְּחִלָּה שֶׁהַמַּשְׁקִין תְּחִלָּה לְעוֹלָם כְּמוֹ שֶׁבֵּאַרְנוּ. אֲבָל אֵין מַשְׁקִין אֵלּוּ שֶׁנִּטְמְאוּ מֵחֲמַת הַיָּדַיִם מְטַמְּאִין כֵּלִים שֶׁעִקַּר טֻמְאַת הַיָּדַיִם מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם. וְכֵן גָּזְרוּ חֲכָמִים עַל כָּל אָדָם שֶׁיֹּאכַל אֳכָלִין טְמֵאִין בֵּין שֶׁאָכַל אֹכֶל רִאשׁוֹן אוֹ אֹכֶל שֵׁנִי וְעַל כָּל הַשּׁוֹתֶה מַשְׁקִין טְמֵאִים שֶׁיִּהְיֶה שֵׁנִי לְטֻמְאָה עַד שֶׁיִּטְבּל. וְאִם נָגַע בָּאֳכָלִין עֲשָׂאָן שְׁלִישִׁי. וְאִם נָגַע בְּמַשְׁקִין אֲפִלּוּ מַשְׁקֶה חֻלִּין עֲשָׂאָן תְּחִלָּה לְטַמֵּא אֳכָלִין וּמַשְׁקִין אֲחֵרִים. אֲבָל לֹא לְטַמֵּא כֵּלִים הוֹאִיל וְעִקַּר טֻמְאַת אָדָם זֶה מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם. וּמִפְּנֵי מָה גָּזְרוּ טֻמְאָה עַל הָאוֹכֵל אֳכָלִין טְמֵאִים. שֶׁמָּא יֹאכַל אֹכֶל רִאשׁוֹן אוֹ שֵׁנִי וְיִשְׁתֶּה עָלָיו מַשְׁקֶה תְּרוּמָה וְנִמְצָא הַמַּשְׁקֶה תְּרוּמָה טָמֵא בָּאֹכֶל שֶׁבְּפִיו. וְכֵן הַשּׁוֹתֶה מַשְׁקִין טְמֵאִים שֶׁמָּא יֹאכַל עִמָּהֶן אֹכֶל תְּרוּמָה וְנִמְצָא טָמֵא בְּמַשְׁקִין שֶׁבְּפִיו. וּכְבָר בֵּאַרְנוּ בִּתְרוּמוֹת שֶׁאָסוּר לֶאֱכל תְּרוּמָה טְמֵאָה:

11

A person who contracts impurity because he partook of impure foods does not contract impurity unless he partakes of a quarter of a loaf of bread which is the size of an egg and a half when judged generously. Similarly, one who contracts impurity from drinking does not contract impurity unless he drinks a revi'it of impure liquids. All types of foods can be combined to comprise the sum of a quarter of a loaf that disqualifies the body of a person who partakes of them. And all liquids can be combined to comprise the sum of a revi'it. If one eats or drinks less than these measures, he is pure.

The following rule applies if one ate a small amount, then waited, and then ate some more. If he ate the required measure within the time it usually takes to eat half a loaf, the quantities are combined. If not, they are not combined. Similarly, if he drank a small amount, then waited, and then drank some more, if he drank the required measure] within the time it usually takes to eat half a loaf, the quantities are combined. If not, they are not combined.

The following rule applies if one ate less than the minimum measure, immersed in a mikveh, ascended, and immediately ate more. If he did not wait between eating and there is less time than it usually takes to eat half a loaf between the eating that preceded the immersion and the eating that followed it, they can be combined.

יא

אֵינוֹ מִתְטַמֵּא עַד שֶׁיֹּאכַל מַאֲכָלִים טְמֵאִים כַּחֲצִי פְּרָס שֶׁהוּא כְּבֵיצָה וּמֶחֱצָה שׂוֹחֶקֶת. וְכֵן הַשּׁוֹתֶה אֵינוֹ מִתְטַמֵּא עַד שֶׁיִּשְׁתֶּה מִמַּשְׁקִין טְמֵאִין רְבִיעִית. וְכָל הָאֳכָלִין מִצְטָרְפִין לְכַחֲצִי פְּרָס לִפְסל אֶת הַגְּוִיָּה. וְכָל הַמַּשְׁקִין מִצְטָרְפִין לִרְבִיעִית. וְאִם אָכַל אוֹ שָׁתָה פָּחוֹת מִשִּׁעוּר זֶה טָהוֹר. אָכַל מְעַט וְשָׁהָה וְאָכַל מְעַט אִם יֵשׁ מִתְּחִלָּה וְעַד סוֹף כְּדֵי אֲכִילַת פְּרָס מִצְטָרְפִין וְאִם לָאו אֵין מִצְטָרְפִין. וְכֵן אִם שָׁתָה מְעַט וְשָׁהָה וְשָׁתָה מְעַט אִם יֵשׁ מִתְּחִלָּה וְעַד סוֹף כְּדֵי אֲכִילַת פְּרָס מִצְטָרְפִין וְאִם לָאו אֵין מִצְטָרְפִין. אָכַל פָּחוֹת מִכְּשִׁעוּר וְטָבַל וְעָלָה וְאָכַל מְעַט מִיָּד אִם לֹא שָׁהָה בֵּינֵיהֶן וַהֲרֵי בֵּין אֲכִילָה שֶׁלִּפְנֵי טְבִילָה וְשֶׁלְּאַחַר טְבִילָה בִּכְדֵי אֲכִילַת פְּרָס הֲרֵי אֵלּוּ מִצְטָרְפִין:

12

When a woman who is a primary derivative of impurity nurses her son, her son is pure. The Sages did not decree that he would be impure. Even if one would say that the infant nursed a revi'it of milk, it is possible that from the beginning to the end, doing so took more time than it usually takes to eat half a loaf, for he does not nurse all at once.

יב

אִשָּׁה שֶׁהִיא רִאשׁוֹן לְטֻמְאָה וּמֵינִיקָה אֶת בְּנָהּ הֲרֵי הַבֵּן טָהוֹר וְלֹא גָּזְרוּ עָלָיו טֻמְאָה שֶׁאֲפִלּוּ תֹּאמַר שֶׁיָּנַק רְבִיעִית אֶפְשָׁר שֶׁיֵּשׁ מִתְּחִלָּה וְעַד סוֹף יֶתֶר מִכְּדֵי אֲכִילַת פְּרָס שֶׁהֲרֵי אֵינוֹ יוֹנֵק בְּבַת אַחַת:

13

Because of the danger, our Sages granted a pregnant woman license to partake of less than the minimum measure, even though ultimately, she will partake of a larger amount. She does not need to immerse herself. Instead, she is pure.

יג

הַמְעֻבֶּרֶת הִתִּירוּ לָהּ לֶאֱכל אֳכָלִין טְמֵאִין פָּחוֹת מִכְּשִׁעוּר. וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהִיא אוֹכֶלֶת הַרְבֵּה מִפְּנֵי הַסַּכָּנָה. וְאֵינָהּ צְרִיכָה טְבִילָה אֶלָּא הֲרֵי הִיא טְהוֹרָה:

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The Mishneh Torah was the Rambam's (Rabbi Moses ben Maimon) magnum opus, a work spanning hundreds of chapters and describing all of the laws mentioned in the Torah. To this day it is the only work that details all of Jewish observance, including those laws which are only applicable when the Holy Temple is in place. Participating in the one of the annual study cycles of these laws (3 chapters/day, 1 chapter/day, or Sefer Hamitzvot) is a way we can play a small but essential part in rebuilding the final Temple.
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