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Rambam - 1 Chapter a Day

Shabbat - Chapter Twenty Nine

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Shabbat - Chapter Twenty Nine

1

It is a positive commandment from the Torah1 to sanctify the Sabbath day with a verbal statement,2 as [implied by Exodus 20:8]: "Remember the Sabbath day to sanctify it" - i.e., remember it with [words of] praise [that reflect its] holiness.3

This remembrance must be made at the Sabbath's entrance and at its departure: at the [day's] entrance with the kiddush that sanctifies the day, and at its departure with havdalah.4

א

מִצְוַת עֲשֵׂה מִן הַתּוֹרָה לְקַדֵּשׁ אֶת יוֹם הַשַּׁבָּת בִּדְבָרִים שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמות כ ח) "זָכוֹר אֶת יוֹם הַשַּׁבָּת לְקַדְּשׁוֹ". כְּלוֹמַר זָכְרֵהוּ זְכִירַת שֶׁבַח וְקִדּוּשׁ. וְצָרִיךְ לְזָכְרֵהוּ בִּכְנִיסָתוֹ וּבִיצִיאָתוֹ. בִּכְנִיסָתוֹ בְּקִדּוּשׁ הַיּוֹם וּבִיצִיאָתוֹ בְּהַבְדָּלָה:

2

This is the text of the kiddush, sanctifying the day:



Blessed are You, God, our Lord, King of the universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments and has desired us. He has given us5 the holy Sabbath with love and with favor as an inheritance and a commemoration of the work of creation.6

It is the first of the convocations of holiness,7 a commemoration of the exodus from Egypt.8 For You have chosen us and sanctified us from among all the nations. With love and favor You have granted us Your holy Sabbath as an inheritance.9 Blessed are You, God, who sanctifies the Sabbath.

ב

וְזֶה הוּא נֹסַח קִדּוּשׁ הַיּוֹם. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְרָצָה בָנוּ וְשַׁבַּת קָדְשׁוֹ בְּאַהֲבָה וְרָצוֹן הִנְחִילָנוּ זִכָּרוֹן לְמַעֲשֵׂה בְרֵאשִׁית תְּחִלָּה לְמִקְרָאֵי קֹדֶשׁ זֵכֶר לִיצִיאַת מִצְרָיִם כִּי בָנוּ בָחַרְתָּ וְאוֹתָנוּ קִדַּשְׁתָּ מִכָּל הָעַמִּים וְשַׁבַּת קָדְשְׁךָ בְּאַהֲבָה וּבְרָצוֹן הִנְחַלְתָּנוּ בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' מְקַדֵּשׁ הַשַּׁבָּת:


3

This is the text of the havdalah prayer:



Blessed are You God, our Lord, King of the universe, who distinguishes between the holy and the mundane, between light and darkness, between Israel and the nations, and between the seventh day and the six days of activity.10 Blessed are You, God, who distinguishes between the holy and the mundane.

ג

וְזֶה הוּא נֹסַח הַהַבְדָּלָה. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם הַמַּבְדִּיל בֵּין קֹדֶשׁ לְחל וּבֵין אוֹר לְחשֶׁךְ בֵּין יִשְׂרָאֵל לָעַמִּים וּבֵין יוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי לְשֵׁשֶׁת יְמֵי הַמַּעֲשֶׂה בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' הַמַּבְדִּיל בֵּין קֹדֶשׁ לְחל:


4

The essence [of the mitzvah] of sanctifying the Sabbath [is to do so] at night.11 If a person does not recite kiddush at night - whether consciously or inadvertently - he may recite kiddush12 throughout the entire [Sabbath] day.13

A person who does not recite havdalah at night may recite [this blessing] on the following day,14 and [indeed] may recite [this blessing] until [nightfall] on Tuesday15 [if he does not fulfill his obligation beforehand].

[Although the havdalah blessing may be recited at a later time,] one should recite the blessing on a flame only on Saturday night.16

ד

עִקַּר הַקִּדּוּשׁ בַּלַּיְלָה. אִם לֹא קִדֵּשׁ בַּלַּיְלָה בֵּין בְּשׁוֹגֵג בֵּין בְּמֵזִיד מְקַדֵּשׁ וְהוֹלֵךְ כָּל הַיּוֹם כֻּלּוֹ. וְאִם לֹא הִבְדִּיל בַּלַּיְלָה מַבְדִּיל לְמָחָר וּמַבְדִּיל וְהוֹלֵךְ עַד סוֹף יוֹם שְׁלִישִׁי. אֲבָל אֵינוֹ מְבָרֵךְ עַל הָאוּר אֶלָּא בְּלֵיל מוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת בִּלְבַד:

5

A person is forbidden17 to eat or to drink wine from the commencement of the Sabbath onward18 until he recites kiddush. Similarly, after the conclusion of the day, a person is forbidden to begin to eat, drink, perform labor,19 or taste anything until he recites havdalah. Drinking water is, however, permitted.20

Should a person forget or transgress and eat or drink before reciting kiddush or havdalah, he may nevertheless recite kiddush or havdalah afterwards.21

ה

אָסוּר לְאָדָם לֶאֱכל אוֹ לִשְׁתּוֹת יַיִן מִשֶּׁקָּדַשׁ הַיּוֹם עַד שֶׁיְּקַדֵּשׁ. וְכֵן מִשֶּׁיָּצָא הַיּוֹם אָסוּר לוֹ לְהַתְחִיל לֶאֱכל וְלִשְׁתּוֹת וְלַעֲשׂוֹת מְלָאכָה אוֹ לִטְעֹם כְּלוּם עַד שֶׁיַּבְדִּיל. וְלִשְׁתּוֹת מַיִם מֻתָּר. שָׁכַח אוֹ עָבַר וְאָכַל וְשָׁתָה קֹדֶם שֶׁיְּקַדֵּשׁ אוֹ קֹדֶם שֶׁיַּבְדִּיל הֲרֵי זֶה מְקַדֵּשׁ וּמַבְדִּיל אַחַר שֶׁאָכַל:

6

It is a mitzvah [instituted by] our Sages to recite kiddush over [a cup of] wine22 and to recite havdalah over [a cup of] wine.

Although one recites havdalah in one's [evening] prayers, one is required to recite [this blessing] over a cup [of wine].23 [Nevertheless,] once a person has said "[Blessed is He24] who distinguishes between the holy and the mundane," he is permitted to perform labor25 even though he has not recited havdalah over a cup [of wine].

One should recite the blessing over the wine first, and then recite the kiddush.26 One should not wash one's hands27 until after the recitation of kiddush.

ו

מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים לְקַדֵּשׁ עַל הַיַּיִן וּלְהַבְדִּיל עַל הַיַּיִן. וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהִבְדִּיל בַּתְּפִלָּה צָרִיךְ לְהַבְדִּיל עַל הַכּוֹס. וּמֵאַחַר שֶׁיַּבְדִּיל וְיֹאמַר בֵּין קֹדֶשׁ לְחל מֻתָּר לוֹ לַעֲשׂוֹת מְלָאכָה אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא הִבְדִּיל עַל הַכּוֹס. וּמְבָרֵךְ עַל הַיַּיִן תְּחִלָּה וְאַחַר כָּךְ מְקַדֵּשׁ. וְאֵינוֹ נוֹטֵל אֶת יָדָיו עַד שֶׁיְּקַדֵּשׁ:

7

What is the procedure he should follow: He should take a cup that contains a revi'it28 or more, wash it thoroughly inside, and rinse its outside.29 He should fill it with wine, hold it in his right hand, lifting it above the ground more than a handbreadth,30 without supporting it with his left hand.

One recites the blessing [borey pri] hagefen and then the kiddush. It is, however, common custom among the Jewish people first to recite the passage Vayechulu,31 then the blessing [borey pri] hagefen and then the kiddush

One should drink [at least] a cheekful of wine32 and give all those joining in the meal to drink.33 Afterwards, one washes one's hands, recites the blessing hamotzi, and [begins] eating.

ז

כֵּיצַד הוּא עוֹשֶׂה. לוֹקֵחַ כּוֹס שֶׁהוּא מַחֲזִיק רְבִיעִית אוֹ יֶתֶר וּמְדִיחוֹ מִבִּפְנִים וְשׁוֹטְפוֹ מִבַּחוּץ וּמְמַלְּאֵהוּ יַיִן וְאוֹחֲזוֹ בִּימִינוֹ וּמַגְבִּיהוֹ מִן הַקַּרְקַע טֶפַח אוֹ יֶתֶר וְלֹא יַסִּיעַ בִּשְׂמֹאל. וּמְבָרֵךְ עַל הַגֶּפֶן וְאַחַר כָּךְ מְקַדֵּשׁ. וּמִנְהָג פָּשׁוּט בְּכָל יִשְׂרָאֵל לִקְרוֹת בַּתְּחִלָּה פָּרָשַׁת (בראשית ב א) "וַיְכֻלּוּ" וְאַחַר כָּךְ מְבָרֵךְ עַל הַיַּיִן וְאַחַר כָּךְ מְקַדֵּשׁ וְשׁוֹתֶה מְלֹא לֻגְמָיו וּמַשְׁקֶה לְכָל בְּנֵי חֲבוּרָה וְאַחַר כָּךְ נוֹטֵל יָדָיו וּמְבָרֵךְ הַמּוֹצִיא וְאוֹכֵל:

8

[The mitzvah of] kiddush [may be fulfilled] only in the place of one's meal.34 What is implied? A person should not recite the kiddush in one house35 and eat his meal in another.36 One may, however, recite kiddush in one corner and eat one's meal in another.

[One might ask:] Why is kiddush recited in the synagogue? Because of the guests who eat and drink there.37

ח

אֵין קִדּוּשׁ אֶלָּא בִּמְקוֹם סְעֻדָּה. כֵּיצַד. לֹא יְקַדֵּשׁ בְּבַיִת זֶה וְיֹאכַל בְּבַיִת אַחֵר. אֲבָל אִם קִדֵּשׁ בְּזָוִית זוֹ אוֹכֵל בְּזָוִית שְׁנִיָּה. וְלָמָּה מְקַדְּשִׁין בְּבֵית הַכְּנֶסֶת מִפְּנֵי הָאוֹרְחִין שֶׁאוֹכְלִין וְשׁוֹתִין שָׁם:

9

A person who desires to partake of bread more than of wine, and similarly, a person who has no wine, should wash his hands, recite the blessing hamotzi, and then recite kiddush. Afterwards, he should break bread and eat.

Havdalah, by contrast, may not be recited over bread, but only over wine.38

ט

הָיָה מִתְאַוֶּה לַפַּת יוֹתֵר מִן הַיַּיִן אוֹ שֶׁלֹּא הָיָה לוֹ יַיִן הֲרֵי זֶה נוֹטֵל יָדָיו תְּחִלָּה וּמְבָרֵךְ הַמּוֹצִיא וּמְקַדֵּשׁ וְאַחַר כָּךְ בּוֹצֵעַ וְאוֹכֵל. וְאֵין מַבְדִּילִין עַל הַפַּת אֶלָּא עַל הַכּוֹס:

10

A person who had intended to recite kiddush over wine on Friday night, but forgot, and before he recited kiddush washed his hands [with the intention of partaking of bread], should recite kiddush over bread. He should not recite kiddush over wine after washing his hands [to partake of] a meal.39

It is a mitzvah to recite a blessing over wine on the Sabbath day before partaking of the second [Sabbath] meal.40 This is called "the great kiddush."41 One recites only the blessing borey pri hagefen, partakes of the wine,42 washes one's hands, and begins the meal.

[On the Sabbath day as well,] a person is forbidden to taste any food before he recites kiddush.43 This kiddush may also be recited only in the place where one eats one's meal.

י

מִי שֶׁנִּתְכַּוֵּן לְקַדֵּשׁ עַל הַיַּיִן בְּלֵילֵי שַׁבָּת וְשָׁכַח וְנָטַל יָדָיו קֹדֶם שֶׁיְּקַדֵּשׁ הֲרֵי זֶה מְקַדֵּשׁ עַל הַפַּת וְאֵינוֹ מְקַדֵּשׁ עַל הַיַּיִן אַחַר שֶׁנָּטַל יָדָיו לַסְּעֵדָּה. וּמִצְוָה לְבָרֵךְ עַל הַיַּיִן בְּיוֹם הַשַּׁבָּת קֹדֶם שֶׁיִּסְעֹד סְעֵדָּה שְׁנִיָּה. וְזֶה הוּא הַנִּקְרָא קִדּוּשָׁא רַבָּה. מְבָרֵךְ בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הַגָּפֶן בִּלְבַד וְשׁוֹתֶה וְאַחַר כָּךְ יִטּל יָדָיו וְיִסְעֹד. וְאָסוּר לוֹ לְאָדָם שֶׁיִּטְעֹם כְּלוּם קֹדֶם שֶׁיְּקַדֵּשׁ. וְגַם קִדּוּשׁ זֶה לֹא יִהְיֶה אֶלָּא בִּמְקוֹם סְעֻדָּה:

11

A person may recite kiddush over a cup [of wine] on Friday before sunset, even though the Sabbath has not commenced.44 Similarly, he may recite havdalah over a cup [of wine] before sunset, even though it is still Sabbath.45 For the mitzvah of remembering the Sabbath involves making [a statement to this effect] at the entrance and the departure of the Sabbath, or slightly before these times.

יא

יֵשׁ לוֹ לְאָדָם לְקַדֵּשׁ עַל הַכּוֹס עֶרֶב שַׁבָּת מִבְּעוֹד יוֹם אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא נִכְנְסָה הַשַּׁבָּת. וְכֵן מַבְדִּיל עַל הַכּוֹס מִבְּעוֹד יוֹם אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁעֲדַיִן הִיא שַׁבָּת. שֶׁמִּצְוַת זְכִירָה לְאָמְרָהּ בֵּין בִּשְׁעַת כְּנִיסָתוֹ וִיצִיאָתוֹ בֵּין קֹדֶם לְשָׁעָה זוֹ כִּמְעַט:

12

A person who is in the midst of eating [a meal] on Friday when the Sabbath commences should spread a cloth46 over the table,47 recite kiddush,48 complete his meal,49 and recite grace.50

A person who is in the midst of eating [a meal]51 on the Sabbath when the Sabbath departs should complete his meal,52 wash his hands,53 recite grace over a cup of wine,54 and afterwards recite havdalah over [this cup].55 If he is sitting and drinking,56 he should interrupt his drinking,57recite havdalah, and begin drinking again.

יב

מִי שֶׁהָיָה אוֹכֵל בְּעֶרֶב שַׁבָּת וְקָדַשׁ עָלָיו הַיּוֹם וְהוּא בְּתוֹךְ הַסְּעֵדָּה פּוֹרֵס מַפָּה עַל הַשֻּׁלְחָן וּמְקַדֵּשׁ וְגוֹמֵר סְעֻדָּתוֹ וְאַחַר כָּךְ מְבָרֵךְ בִּרְכַּת הַמָּזוֹן. הָיָה אוֹכֵל בְּשַׁבָּת וְיָצָא הַשַּׁבָּת וְהוּא בְּתוֹךְ סְעֻדָּתוֹ גּוֹמֵר סְעֵדָּתוֹ וְנוֹטֵל יָדָיו וּמְבָרֵךְ בִּרְכַּת הַמָּזוֹן עַל הַכּוֹס וְאַחַר כָּךְ מַבְדִּיל עָלָיו. וְאִם הָיָה בְּתוֹךְ הַשְּׁתִיָּה פּוֹסֵק וּמַבְדִּיל וְאַחַר כָּךְ חוֹזֵר לִשְׁתִיָּתוֹ:

13

A person who is eating and completes his meal at the commencement of the Sabbath should recite grace first and then recite kiddush on a second cup of wine.58 He should not recite grace and kiddush on the same cup [of wine], because two mitzvot should not be performed with the same cup [of wine].59 For both the mitzvah of kiddush and the mitzvah of grace are mitzvot that emanate from the Torah itself.

יג

הָיָה אוֹכֵל וְגָמַר אֲכִילָתוֹ עִם הַכְנָסַת שַׁבָּת מְבָרֵךְ בִּרְכַּת הַמָּזוֹן תְּחִלָּה וְאַחַר כָּךְ מְקַדֵּשׁ עַל כּוֹס שֵׁנִי. וְלֹא יְבָרֵךְ וַיְקַדֵּשׁ עַל כּוֹס אֶחָד שֶׁאֵין עוֹשִׂין שְׁתֵּי מִצְוֹת בְּכוֹס אֶחָד. שֶׁמִּצְוַת קִדּוּשׁ וּמִצְוַת בִּרְכַּת הַמָּזוֹן שְׁתֵּי מִצְוֹת שֶׁל תּוֹרָה הֵן:

14

Kiddush may be recited only on wine that is fit to be offered as a libation on the altar.60 Therefore, if one mixed even a drop of honey61 or yeast62 the size of a mustard seed in a large barrel [of wine], kiddush may not be recited upon it.

This is the ruling that we follow universally in the west. There is, however, an opinion that allows kiddush to be recited on such wine.63 [This view] explains that the term "wine that is fit to be offered as a libation on the altar" excludes only wine with an unpleasant fragrance,64 wine that was left uncovered,65or wine that was cooked.66 Kiddush may not be recited on any of these wines.

יד

אֵין מְקַדְּשִׁין אֶלָּא עַל הַיַּיִן הָרָאוּי לְנַסֵּךְ עַל גַּבֵּי הַמִּזְבֵּחַ. לְפִיכָךְ אִם נִתְעָרֵב בּוֹ דְּבַשׁ אוֹ שְׂאוֹר אֲפִלּוּ כְּטִפַּת הַחַרְדָּל בְּחָבִית גְּדוֹלָה אֵין מְקַדְּשִׁין עָלָיו. כָּךְ אָנוּ מוֹרִין בְּכָל הַמַּעֲרָב. וְיֵשׁ מִי שֶׁמַּתִּיר לְקַדֵּשׁ עָלָיו וְאוֹמֵר לֹא נֶאֱמַר הַיַּיִן הָרָאוּי לְנַסֵּךְ עַל גַּבֵּי הַמִּזְבֵּחַ אֶלָּא לְהוֹצִיא יַיִן שֶׁרֵיחוֹ רַע אוֹ מְגֻלֶּה אוֹ מְבֻשָּׁל שֶׁאֵין מְקַדְּשִׁין עַל אֶחָד מֵהֶן:

15

Wine that tastes like vinegar may not be used for kiddush although its fragrance is that of wine.67 Similarly, we may not recite kiddush over [the beverage produced from] pouring water over the dregs of wine, although it tastes like wine.

When does the above apply? When the ratio between the water poured over the dregs and the beverage produced is less than three parts to four parts. If, however, the ratio is more than three parts to four parts, [the beverage produced is considered to be] diluted wine, and kiddush may be recited over it.68

טו

יַיִן שֶׁטַּעֲמוֹ טַעַם חֹמֶץ אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁרֵיחוֹ רֵיחַ יַיִן אֵין מְקַדְּשִׁין עָלָיו. וְכֵן שְׁמָרִים שֶׁנָּתַן עֲלֵיהֶן מַיִם אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁיֵּשׁ בָּהֶן טַעַם יַיִן אֵין מְקַדְּשִׁין עֲלֵיהֶן. בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בְּשֶׁנָּתַן עַל הַשְּׁמָרִים שְׁלֹשָׁה מַיִם וְהוֹצִיא פָּחוֹת מֵאַרְבָּעָה. אֲבָל אִם הוֹצִיא אַרְבָּעָה הֲרֵי זֶה יַיִן מָזוּג וּמְקַדְּשִׁין עָלָיו:

16

When a person drinks from a vessel containing wine, even if he drinks only a small amount from a vessel that contains many revi'iot [of wine],69 he has blemished the wine and invalidated it. We may not recite kiddush over the remainder,70 because it is regarded like the remnants left over in a cup.71

טז

כְּלִי שֶׁהָיָה מָלֵא יַיִן אֲפִלּוּ מַחֲזִיק כַּמָּה רְבִיעִיּוֹת אִם שָׁתָה מִמֶּנּוּ מְעַט הֲרֵי זֶה פְּגָמוֹ וְנִפְסַל וְאֵין מְקַדְּשִׁין עַל הַשְּׁאָר מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהוּא כְּשִׁיּוּרֵי כּוֹסוֹת:

17

Although the fragrance of wine resembles vinegar, if its flavor resembles wine, kiddush may be recited over it.72 Similarly, [kiddush may be recited over] diluted wine.73

We may recite kiddush over raisin wine, provided it is made from raisins that [are not entirely dried out] - i.e., if one presses them, they will release a concentrated syrup.

Similarly, a person may recite kiddush over wine fresh from the wine press, [i.e., grape juice].74 Indeed, a person may squeeze a cluster of grapes and recite kiddush over the juice immediately thereafter.75

Although the majority of a country uses beer instead of wine, [the beer] is not acceptable for kiddush.76 It may, nevertheless, be used for havdalah,77 for in that country it serves as a substitute for wine.78

יז

יַיִן שֶׁרֵיחוֹ רֵיחַ הַחֹמֶץ וְטַעֲמוֹ טַעַם יַיִן מְקַדְּשִׁין עָלָיו. וְכֵן יַיִן מָזוּג. וְכֵן יֵין צִמּוּקִים מְקַדְּשִׁין עָלָיו וְהוּא שֶׁיִּהְיוּ צִמּוּקִים שֶׁיֵּשׁ בָּהֶן לַחְלוּחִית שֶׁאִם יִדְרֹךְ אוֹתָן יֵצֵא מֵהֶן דִּבְשָׁן. וְכֵן יַיִן חָדָשׁ מִגִּתּוֹ מְקַדְּשִׁין עָלָיו. וְסוֹחֵט אָדָם אֶשְׁכּוֹל שֶׁל עֲנָבִים וּמְקַדֵּשׁ עָלָיו בִּשְׁעָתוֹ. מְדִינָה שֶׁרֹב יֵינָהּ שֵׁכָר אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהוּא פָּסוּל לְקִדּוּשׁ מֻתָּר לְהַבְדִּיל עָלָיו הוֹאִיל וְהוּא חֲמַר הַמְּדִינָה:

18

Just as we recite kiddush on Friday night and havdalah on Saturday night, so too, we recite kiddush on the night of a holiday's commencement and havdalah on the night following a holiday and on the night following Yom Kippur, for they are all "Sabbaths of God."79

We recite havdalah on the night leading from a holiday to chol hamo'ed,80 and on the night leading from the Sabbath to a holiday,81 but not on the night leading from a holiday to the Sabbath.82

יח

כְּשֵׁם שֶׁמְּקַדְּשִׁין בְּלֵילֵי שַׁבָּת וּמַבְדִּילִין בְּמוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת כָּךְ מְקַדְּשִׁין בְּלֵילֵי יָמִים טוֹבִים וּמַבְדִּילִין בְּמוֹצָאֵיהֶן וּבְמוֹצָאֵי יוֹם הַכִּפּוּרִים שֶׁכֻּלָּם שַׁבְּתוֹת ה' הֵן. וּמַבְדִּילִין בְּמוֹצָאֵי יָמִים טוֹבִים לְחֻלּוֹ שֶׁל מוֹעֵד וּבְמוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת לְיוֹם טוֹב. אֲבָל אֵין מַבְדִּילִים בְּמוֹצָאֵי יוֹם טוֹב לְשַׁבָּת:

19

[The following is] the text of the kiddush recited on festivals:



Blessed are You, God our Lord, King of the universe, who has chosen us83 from all the nations, and raised us above people of all tongues. He chose us and made us great; he showed us favor and glorified us.

And God our Lord gave us with love festivals for rejoicing, holidays and [unique] seasons for gladness, [including] this festive day of holy convocation, this festival of

- Matzot, Shavuot, [or] Sukkot -

the season of - our freedom, the giving of our Torah, [or] our happiness -

in love, as a commemoration of the exodus from Egypt.

For You have chosen us and sanctified us from all the nations and given us as an inheritance Your holy seasons for rejoicing and gladness. Bless are You, God, who sanctifies Israel and the seasons.84



When [a holiday] occurs on the Sabbath, one should mention the Sabbath [in the midst of the passage], and conclude in the same manner as one concludes in prayer, "[Blessed...] who sanctifies the Sabbath,85 Israel and the seasons."

יט

נֹסַח קִדּוּשׁ יוֹם טוֹב. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר בָּחַר בָּנוּ מִכָּל עָם וְרוֹמְמָנוּ מִכָּל לָשׁוֹן בָּחַר בָּנוּ וַיְּגַדְּלֵנוּ רָצָה בָּנוּ וַיְּפָאֲרֵנוּ. וַתִּתֵּן לָנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ בְּאַהֲבָה מוֹעֲדִים לְשִׂמְחָה חַגִּים וּזְמַנִּים לְשָׂשׂוֹן אֶת יוֹם טוֹב מִקְרָא קֹדֶשׁ הַזֶּה אֶת יוֹם חַג הַמַּצּוֹת הַזֶּה אוֹ חַג הַשָּׁבוּעוֹת אוֹ חַג הַסֻּכּוֹת זְמַן חֵרוּתֵנוּ אוֹ זְמַן מַתַּן תּוֹרָתֵנוּ אוֹ זְמַן שִׂמְחָתֵנוּ בְּאַהֲבָה זֵכֶר לִיצִיאַת מִצְרָיִם כִּי בָנוּ בָחַרְתָּ וְאוֹתָנוּ קִדַּשְׁתָּ מִכָּל הָעַמִּים וּמוֹעֲדֵי קָדְשֶׁךָ בְּשִׂמְחָה וּבְשָׂשׂוֹן הִנְחַלְתָּנוּ בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' מְקַדֵּשׁ יִשְׂרָאֵל וְהַזְּמַנִּים. וְאִם חָל לִהְיוֹת בְּשַׁבָּת מַזְכִּיר שַׁבָּת וְחוֹתֵם כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁחוֹתֵם בַּתְּפִלָּה מְקַדֵּשׁ הַשַּׁבָּת וְיִשְׂרָאֵל וְהַזְּמַנִּים:

20

On Rosh HaShanah, one should say:



...And God our Lord gave us with love this day of holy convocation for remembrance,86 recalling the sounding [of the shofar],87 a holy convocation in love, as a commemoration of the exodus from Egypt.

For You have chosen us and sanctified us from all the nations, and Your words are true and everlasting. Blessed are You God, the King of the entire earth,88 who sanctifies Israel and the Day of Remembrance.



When [Rosh HaShanah] occurs on the Sabbath, one should conclude "[Blessed...] who sanctifies the Sabbath, Israel and the Day of Remembrance," as one concludes in prayer.

כ

בְּרֹאשׁ הַשָּׁנָה אוֹמֵר. וַתִּתֵּן לָנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ בְּאַהֲבָה אֶת יוֹם טוֹב מִקְרָא קֹדֶשׁ הַזֶּה זִכְרוֹן תְּרוּעָה מִקְרָא קֹדֶשׁ בְּאַהֲבָה זֵכֶר לִיצִיאַת מִצְרָיִם כִּי בָנוּ בָחַרְתָּ וְאוֹתָנוּ קִדַּשְׁתָּ מִכָּל הָעַמִּים וּדְבָרְךָ אֱמֶת וְקַיָּם לָעַד בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' מֶלֶךְ עַל כָּל הָאָרֶץ מְקַדֵּשׁ יִשְׂרָאֵל וְיוֹם הַזִּכָּרוֹן. וְאִם חָל לִהְיוֹת בְּשַׁבָּת חוֹתֵם מְקַדֵּשׁ הַשַּׁבָּת וְיִשְׂרָאֵל וְיוֹם הַזִּכָּרוֹן כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁחוֹתֵם בַּתְּפִלָּה:

21

On the night of a holiday, one recites kiddush over wine as on the Sabbath.89 Should one lack wine or should one desire bread, one may recite kiddush over bread.90 Similarly, on [the day of a] holiday, one should recite "the great kiddush" as one does on the Sabbath.91

כא

בְּלֵילֵי יוֹם טוֹב מְקַדֵּשׁ עַל הַיַּיִן כִּבְשַׁבָּת. וְאִם אֵין לוֹ יַיִן אוֹ שֶׁהָיָה מִתְאַוֶּה לְפַת מְקַדֵּשׁ עַל הַפַּת. וְכֵן בְּיוֹם טוֹב מְקַדֵּשׁ קִדּוּשָׁא רַבָּא כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁמְּקַדֵּשׁ בְּשַׁבָּת:

22

What blessings should be recited on the night of a holiday that falls on a Sunday? At the outset, one recites the blessing [borey pri] hagefen. Afterwards, one should recite the kiddush for the holiday. Then one should recite the blessing over fire,92 and after that havdalah. One should conclude havdalah, "...who distinguishes between the holy and the holy."93 [In conclusion,] one recites the blessing Shehecheyanu.94

כב

כֵּיצַד מְבָרְכִין בְּלֵילֵי יוֹם טוֹב שֶׁחָל לִהְיוֹת בְּאֶחָד בְּשַׁבָּת. בַּתְּחִלָּה מְבָרֵךְ עַל הַגֶּפֶן. וְאַחַר כָּךְ מְקַדֵּשׁ קִדּוּשׁ יוֹם טוֹב. וְאַחַר כָּךְ מְבָרֵךְ עַל הַנֵּר. וְאַחַר כָּךְ מַבְדִּיל וְחוֹתֵם בְּהַבְדָּלָה הַמַּבְדִּיל בֵּין קֹדֶשׁ לְקֹדֶשׁ. וְאַחַר כָּךְ מְבָרֵךְ שֶׁהֶחֱיָנוּ:

23

On the night of every holiday95 and on the night of Yom Kippur, we recite the blessing Shehecheyanu.96 We do not recite the blessing Shehecheyanu on the seventh day of Pesach, because it is not a holiday in its own right,97 and we have already recited the blessing Shehecheyanu at the beginning of the Pesach festival.98

כג

כָּל לֵילֵי יוֹם טוֹב וּבְלֵיל יוֹם הַכִּפּוּרִים אוֹמְרִים שֶׁהֶחֱיָנוּ. וּבִשְׁבִיעִי שֶׁל פֶּסַח אֵין מְבָרְכִין שֶׁהֶחֱיָנוּ מִפְּנֵי שֶׁאֵינוֹ רֶגֶל בִּפְנֵי עַצְמוֹ וּכְבָר בֵּרֵךְ עַל הַזְּמַן בִּתְחִלַּת הַפֶּסַח:

24

This is the order of havdalah on Saturday night: [First,] one recites the blessing over the wine;99 afterwards, one recites the blessing over the spices,100 and then over the flame.

Which blessing is recited over the flame? "[Blessed... King of the universe,] who creates the lights of fire."101 Afterwards, one recites havdalah.

כד

סֵדֶר הַבְדָּלָה בְּמוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת. מְבָרֵךְ עַל הַיַּיִן וְאַחַר כָּךְ עַל הַבְּשָׂמִים וְאַחַר כָּךְ עַל הַנֵּר. וְכֵיצַד מְבָרֵךְ עַל הַנֵּר, בּוֹרֵא מְאוֹרֵי הָאֵשׁ. וְאַחַר כָּךְ מַבְדִּיל:

25

We do not recite the blessing over the flame until we derive benefit from its light to the extent that one could differentiate between the coin of one country and that of another.102

We may not recite the blessing over a flame belonging to gentiles,103 for it may be assumed that their gatherings are associated with the worship of false divinities.104 We may not recite the blessing on a flame [kindled for] the worship of false divinities105 or on a flame [kindled for the sake of] the deceased.106

כה

אֵין מְבָרְכִין עַל הַנֵּר עַד שֶׁיֵּאוֹתוּ לְאוֹרוֹ כְּדֵי שֶׁיַּכִּיר בֵּין מַטְבֵּעַ מְדִינָה זוֹ לְמַטְבֵּעַ מְדִינָה אַחֶרֶת. וְאֵין מְבָרְכִין עַל הַנֵּר שֶׁל עוֹבְדֵי כּוֹכָבִים וּמַזָּלוֹת שֶׁסְּתַם מְסִבָּתָן לַעֲבוֹדַת כּוֹכָבִים וּמַזָּלוֹת. וְאֵין מְבָרְכִין לֹא עַל הַנֵּר שֶׁל עֲבוֹדַת כּוֹכָבִים וּמַזָּלוֹת וְלֹא עַל הַנֵּר שֶׁל מֵתִים:

26

When a Jew lights a flame from a gentile's [flame], or a gentile from a Jew's [flame], we may recite a blessing upon it.107 [If, however,] a gentile [lights a flame] from another gentile's [flame], we may not recite a blessing upon it.108

[The following rules apply when a person] is walking outside a large city and sees light: If most of the city's inhabitants are gentiles, he may not recite this blessing. If most are Jewish, he may.

At the outset, one should not recite this blessing over the fire of a furnace, an oven, or a range.109 If coals [are glowing to the extent that] were one to put a sliver of wood between them, they would catch fire of their own accord, we may recite a blessing over them.110

We may recite this blessing over the light of the House of Study if there is an important person there for whom the light is kindled. We may recite a blessing over the light of a synagogue if there is a chazan who lives there.111

The most choice way of performing the mitzvah is to use a torch for the havdalah [light].112 There is no need to seek light [for havdalah] as one seeks to fulfill all the other mitzvot.113 Instead, [the law is that] if one has a light, one should recite the blessing over it.

כו

יִשְׂרָאֵל שֶׁהִדְלִיק מֵעוֹבֵד כּוֹכָבִים וּמַזָּלוֹת אוֹ עוֹבֵד כּוֹכָבִים וּמַזָּלוֹת מִיִּשְׂרָאֵל מְבָרְכִין עָלָיו. עוֹבֵד כּוֹכָבִים וּמַזָּלוֹת מֵעוֹבְדֵי כּוֹכָבִים וּמַזָּלוֹת אֵין מְבָרְכִין עָלָיו. הָיָה מְהַלֵּךְ חוּץ לַכְּרַךְ וְרָאָה אוֹר אִם רֹב אַנְשֵׁי הַכְּרַךְ עוֹבְדֵי כּוֹכָבִים וּמַזָּלוֹת אֵינוֹ מְבָרֵךְ וְאִם רֹב יִשְׂרָאֵל מְבָרֵךְ. אוּר שֶׁל כִּבְשָׁן שֶׁל תַּנּוּר וְשֶׁל כִּירַיִם לְכַתְּחִלָּה לֹא יְבָרֵךְ עָלָיו. הַגֶּחָלִים אִם כְּשֶׁיַּכְנִיס קֵיסָם בֵּינֵיהֶן דּוֹלֵק מֵאֵלָיו מְבָרְכִין עֲלֵיהֶן. אוּר שֶׁל בֵּית הַמִּדְרָשׁ אִם יֵשׁ שָׁם אָדָם חָשׁוּב שֶׁמַּדְלִיקִים בִּשְׁבִילוֹ מְבָרְכִין עָלָיו. שֶׁל בֵּית הַכְּנֶסֶת אִם יֵשׁ שָׁם חַזָּן שֶׁהוּא דָּר שָׁם מְבָרְכִין עָלָיו. וַאֲבוּקָה לְהַבְדָּלָה מִצְוָה מִן הַמֻּבְחָר. וְאֵין מְחַזְּרִין עַל הָאוּר כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁמְּחַזְּרִין עַל כָּל הַמִּצְוֹת אֶלָּא אִם יֵשׁ לוֹ מְבָרְכִין עָלָיו:

27

We may recite the blessing over a fire that is kindled on the Sabbath for the sake of a sick person or for a woman after childbirth.114

On Saturday night, we may recite the blessing over light produced from wood or stone, for this was the manner in which fire was first created by man.115 We may not, by contrast, recite a blessing over such a flame on the night following Yom Kippur. For on the night following Yom Kippur, we recite the blessing only on a light that has rested.116 When, however, a fire is kindled on Yom Kippur for the sake of a sick person or for a woman after childbirth, we may recite the blessing upon it, for it "rested from sin."

כז

אוּר שֶׁהֻדְלַק בְּשַׁבָּת לְחוֹלֶה וּלְחַיָּה מְבָרְכִין עָלָיו בְּמוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת. אוּר שֶׁהֻקְדַּח מִן הָעֵצִים וּמִן הָאֲבָנִים מְבָרְכִין עָלָיו בְּמוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת שֶׁהִיא הָיְתָה תְּחִלַּת בְּרִיָּתוֹ בִּידֵי אָדָם. אֲבָל אֵין מְבָרְכִין עָלָיו בְּמוֹצָאֵי יוֹם הַכִּפּוּרִים שֶׁאֵין מְבָרְכִין בְּמוֹצָאֵי יוֹם הַכִּפּוּרִים אֶלָּא עַל אוּר שֶׁשָּׁבַת. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהֻדְלַק לְחוֹלֶה אוֹ לְחַיָּה בְּיוֹם הַכִּפּוּרִים מְבָרְכִין עָלָיו שֶׁהֲרֵי שָׁבַת מֵעֲבֵרָה:

28

When a holiday falls in the middle of the week,117 one recites [the following passage] as havdalah:



[Blessed are You...] who distinguishes between the holy and the mundane, between darkness and light, between Israel and the gentiles, between the Sabbath and the six days of activity....



One uses the same text as one uses on Saturday night. [The fact that it is not the Sabbath does not present a difficulty, for] one is merely listing the types of distinctions [that God has created within our world].

[On the night following a holiday,] one need not recite the blessing over spices, nor the blessing over light.118 Similarly, we are not required to recite the blessing over spices on the night following Yom Kippur.

כח

יוֹם טוֹב שֶׁחָל לִהְיוֹת בְּאֶמְצַע שַׁבָּת אוֹמֵר בְּהַבְדָּלָה הַמַּבְדִּיל בֵּין קֹדֶשׁ לְחל וּבֵין אוֹר לְחשֶׁךְ וּבֵין יִשְׂרָאֵל לָעַמִּים וּבֵין יוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי לְשֵׁשֶׁת יְמֵי הַמַּעֲשֶׂה כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁאוֹמֵר בְּמוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת שֶׁסֵּדֶר הַהַבְדָּלוֹת הוּא מוֹנֶה. וְאֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ לְבָרֵךְ לֹא עַל הַבְּשָׂמִים וְלֹא עַל הַנֵּר. וְכֵן אֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ לְבָרֵךְ עַל הַבְּשָׂמִים בְּמוֹצָאֵי יוֹם הַכִּפּוּרִים:

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Why is the blessing recited over spices on Saturday night? Because the soul is forlorn119 by reason of of the departure of the Sabbath. Therefore, we gladden120 it and settle it with a pleasant fragrance.

כט

וְלָמָּה מְבָרְכִים עַל הַבְּשָׂמִים בְּמוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהַנֶּפֶשׁ דּוֹאֶבֶת לִיצִיאַת שַׁבָּת מְשַׂמְּחִין אוֹתָהּ וּמְיַשְּׁבִין אוֹתָהּ בְּרֵיחַ טוֹב:

Footnotes
1.

Sefer HaMitzvot (Positive Commandment 155) and Sefer HaChinuch (Mitzvah 31) count this as one of the Torah's 613 mitzvot.

2.

Sefer HaMitzvot states: "With this mitzvah, we are commanded to make statements... that acknowledge the greatness and glory of this day, and how it is distinguished from the days that precede it and those that follow it."

Although the Sabbath is by nature a holy day, this mitzvah requires that we consciously - and verbally - acknowledge this holiness. As the Rambam mentions in Halachah 6, our Sages required that this acknowledgement be recited over a cup of wine. Nevertheless, according to the Torah itself, it is sufficient to make these statements in the prayer service.

3.

As the Rambam states in Hilchot Avodat Kochavim 12:3, this mitzvah is incumbent on women as well as on men. This concept is derived as follows: In the first mention of the Ten Commandments (Exodus, Chapter 20), we are commanded to "remember" (zachor) the Sabbath. In Moses' review of that event (Deuteronomy, Chapter 5), however, he uses the expression, shamor, "observe."

Sh'vuot 20b teaches that these two terms were related by God "in a single breath" - i.e., they are two complementary expressions of respect for the Sabbath. Accordingly, all the individuals obligated to keep the mitzvah of "Observe" must also keep the mitzvah of "Remember." Since women are obligated to keep the mitzvah of "Observe" - i.e., to adhere to the prohibitions against forbidden labor - they are also obligated to "Remember" the Sabbath (Berachot 20b).

4.

As the Rambam clearly states in Sefer HaMitzvot (loc. cit.), his intent is that the mitzvah of remembering the Sabbath encompasses both kiddush and havdalah. The Maggid Mishneh cites opinions that maintain that the mitzvah to "remember the Sabbath" applies only at the commencement of the Sabbath, but not at its conclusion. According to this view, the obligation to recite havdalah is Rabbinic in origin, without any connection to the Biblical commands, "Remember" and "Observe."

Among the practical distinction between these two approaches is the conception of a woman's obligation to recite havdalah. According to the Rambam, there is no difference between a woman's obligation and that of a man. The other view, by contrast, allows for the conception that women are not obligated to recite the havdalah prayer.

The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 296:8) cites both opinions (but appears to favor the Rambam's view). The Ramah suggests that a woman should fulfill her obligation by listening to a man's recitation of this prayer. When this is not possible, a woman should recite the havdalah herself. A man who has fulfilled his obligation should not, however, recite the prayer for the sake of a woman (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 296:19; Mishnah Berurah 296:35-36).

5.

Although the Sabbath is part of the internal rhythm of creation, it was given to the Jewish people alone as a heritage to observe and make part of their lives.

6.

For in the narrative of creation, God rested on the Sabbath day.

7.

In the Bible, the term "convocation of holiness" refers to the festivals. The Sabbath is the first and foremost of these holy days. Therefore, in Leviticus, Chapter 23, when the festivals are mentioned, the Sabbath is mentioned first.

8.

In the Guide for the Perplexed, Vol. II, Chapter 31, the Rambam explains the connection between the exodus from Egypt and the Sabbath. In Egypt, the Jews were slaves and unable to control when they could cease work and rest. By ceasing work every week, they recall God's kindness in delivering them.

The Ramban (in his Commentary on the Torah, Deuteronomy 5:15) offers a different explanation. The exodus from Egypt expresses God's infinite power. If a person doubts the narrative of creation, he can resolve those questions by considering the historical evidence of the miracles of the exodus.

9.

Herein, there is a unique homiletic point. God's choice of the Jewish people is expressed, not in granting them dominion over other nations or bestowing inordinate resources of wealth and prosperity upon them, but rather in granting them the Sabbath and its atmosphere of holiness and peace.

Rav Zerachiah HaLevi notes that the three times God's desire and favor are mentioned this passage refer to the three dimensions of the Jews' connection with the Sabbath: the Sabbath of creation, the Sabbath of the exodus, and "the age that is all Sabbath and rest for life everlasting" - i.e., the era of the Redemption.

10.

All four of the distinctions mentioned are reflected in the transition from the Sabbath to the weekdays. For, as we progress from day to night on the eve between the Sabbath and the days of activity that follow, the Jews - and not the people of the world at large - pass from an atmosphere of restful holiness to involvement with the mundane details of their existence.

11.

For this marks the transition from the weekdays to the Sabbath. More particularly, the most select way of performing the mitzvah is to recite the kiddush shortly after nightfall (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 271:16).

12.

Note that the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 271:8) describes the recitation of the blessing at this time as compensation for the mitzvah of sanctifying the Sabbath at night.

When reciting kiddush during the day, one should recite the entire blessing usually recited on Friday night. The passage Vayechulu should not, however, be recited (Ramah, Orach Chayim, loc. cit.).

13.

Until sunset. Between sunset and the appearance of three stars on Saturday night, the blessing should be recited without mentioning God's name (Mishnah Berurah 271:39).

14.

In Talmudic times, this situation was wont to occur because wine was scarce. People would often be unable to obtain wine on Saturday night, but would be able to secure it the following day.

At present, the most common example of the delay of the recitation of the havdalah occurs when the fast of Tish'ah B'Av is observed on a Sunday. In that instance, havdalah is not recited until Sunday night.

15.

The first three days of the week are still associated with the previous Sabbath. Therefore, the recitation of havdalah is still appropriate (Pesachim 106a).

There are authorities who differ, maintaining that one may not recite havdalah after sunset on Sunday. Also, the Halachot Gedolot states that a person who has eaten before reciting havdalah may no longer recite this prayer from Sunday onward. Although the later authorities do not accept these views, they do urge that the recitation of havdalah not be delayed any later than necessary.

16.

The blessing over a flame was incorporated into the havdalah ceremony to commemorate the discovery of fire by Adam directly after the conclusion of the first Sabbath. Thus, reciting this is appropriate only on Saturday night. Similarly, when havdalah is recited from Sunday onward, the blessing over the spices is also omitted (See Halachah 29, and Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim 299:5).

17.

Whenever the performance of a mitzvah is associated with a specific time, our Sages forbade partaking of a meal from the time when the obligation to perform the mitzvah begins until one actually performs it. With regard to kiddush and havdalah, however, they were more stringent and forbade even tasting food until one performs the mitzvah. They enforced this stringency because the most favorable manner of performing both these mitzvot is to do so at the beginning of the evening (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 271:9).

18.

I.e., from sunset onwards. The procedure to be followed by a person who begins a meal before sunset and continues eating is described in Halachah 12. The restrictions mentioned in this halachah also apply to a person who accepts the Sabbath before its actual commencement (Mishnah Berurah 271:11).

19.

Needless to say, the performance of labor is not mentioned with regard to kiddush, for performing labor on the Sabbath is forbidden regardless.

20.

The Maggid Mishneh maintains that this leniency applies both before kiddush and before havdalah. However, based on the rulings of the Rashba, the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 271:4, 299:1) states that drinking water before reciting kiddush is forbidden. One may, however, drink water before havdalah.

21.

The performance of one undesirable act is not reason to perform another. As soon as one becomes conscious of the obligation to recite kiddush or havdalah, he should cease eating and fulfill the mitzvah (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim 271:4).

22.

The Magen Avraham 271:1 explains that the Rabbinic obligation to recite kiddush over wine does not replace the Biblical commandment entirely. Accordingly, the recitation of the Sabbath prayers in the Shemoneh Esreh of the evening service represents the fulfillment of one's obligation to sanctify the Sabbath.

Although one is also required to recite kiddush before one's meal to fulfill the obligation instituted by our Sages, there is room for certain leniency, because one has already fulfilled one's obligation according to the Torah. For example, a person who is certain that he has recited the evening service, but is in doubt whether or not he has recited kiddush, should not recite the latter prayer. Note, however, Sefer HaKovetz, which interprets these concepts in a different manner.

23.

In Hilchot Tefillah 2:12, the Rambam mentions the inclusion of havdalah in our evening prayers by the addition of the passage Attah Chonantanu to the fourth blessing of the Shemoneh Esreh.

When the Men of the Great Assembly ordained the prayers and blessings for the Jewish people, the Jewish people were needy and could not afford wine. Therefore, these Sages ordained the recitation of havdalah in prayer. Afterwards, when the fortunes of the people improved, the Sages ordained that they should recite this blessing over a cup of wine, like kiddush.

Subsequently, our people's prosperity suffered and the Sages reinstituted the blessing into the prayer service. Nevertheless, in order to prevent the matter from being totally dependent on socio-economic factors, they established the following guidelines: A person should recite the havdalah prayers in the Shemoneh Esreh of the evening service. Afterwards, he should try to obtain wine in order to fulfill the mitzvah as the Sages prescribed. If, however, this is not possible, his recitation of the prayer in the evening service is sufficient to fulfill his obligation.

24.

Here, the Rambam is not necessarily referring to a person who recited the passage Attah Chonantanu in the evening prayers. To be permitted to perform labor, it is sufficient to recite the phrase, "Blessed be He who distinguishes between the holy and the mundane," without reciting God's name or mentioning His sovereignty. Indeed, this is a frequent practice for women, who do not always recite the evening service.

25.

But not to eat or to drink.

26.

For we follow the principle תדיר ושאינו תדיר, תדיר קודם Whenever a person has a choice of reciting two blessings, one frequently recited and one less frequently recited, he first recites the one that is more frequently recited.

27.

This refers to the ritual washing before partaking of bread. The order suggested by the Rambam is quoted by the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 271:12). Significantly, the Ramah states that it is preferable to wash one's hands and recite the blessing before reciting kiddush. (See Halachah 10 and notes.) He writes that this is the common practice in the Ashkenazic community. (Significantly, the Shulchan Aruch HaRav 271:23 and the Mishnah Berurah 271:62 differ and suggest adhering to the ruling of the Shulchan Aruch.)

28.

A revi'it is 86.6 cubic centimeters according to Shiurei Torah and 150 cubic centimeters according to the Chazon Ish.

29.

These are the requirements Berachot 51a mentions with regard to a cup of blessing. In contrast to Rashi, the Rambam considers the term "cup of blessing" as referring primarily to the cup over which kiddush is recited. He does, however, also apply these principles to the cup over which grace is recited. (See Hilchot Berachot 7:15.)

Based on this distinction, the cup must also be whole, without a crack or chip; it should be filled to the brim; and no one should have drunk from the wine in the cup beforehand (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 271:18).

30.

The Rambam is speaking about Arab countries, where people would eat while sitting on mats on the ground. When eating at a table, one is obligated to lift the cup a handbreadth above the table.

31.

This recitation of this passage acknowledges God's creation of the world. Accordingly, Shabbat 119b states, "Whoever recites the passage Vayechulu on Friday night is considered to be God's partner in creation."

The Rokeach mentions that we should recite Vayechulu three times on Friday night - and this, indeed, is our practice: once in the Shemoneh Esreh of the evening service, once communally after the Shemoneh Esreh, and once in Kiddush.

32.

A cheekful is slightly more than half of a revi'it (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim 271:13). This, however, refers to a cheekful of an ordinary person. More particularly, the measure of a "cheekful" depends on the size of an individual person's mouth - i.e., were a person to swish the wine in his mouth to one side, that cheek would look full (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 271:24; Mishnah Berurah 271:68).

33.

These people are not required to partake of a revi'it. Indeed, they may fulfill their obligation for kiddush by reciting Amen, without partaking of the wine at all (Magen Avraham 271:30). Nevertheless, it is preferable that everyone be given from the cup of kiddush or have cups of wine before them (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim 271:14).

34.

Tosafot (Pesachim 101a) derive this law from the exegesis of Isaiah 58:13: "And you shall call the Sabbath, 'a delight.' It explains that "calling the Sabbath" - reciting kiddush - must be in the place of "a delight," one's Sabbath meal.

35.

We have translated the word בית as "house" according to its literal meaning. The Maggid Mishneh, however, suggests that in this context, the term should be rendered as "room" - i.e., one may move from one corner to another in the same room, but not from one room to another in the same house. (See also Hilchot Berachot 4:5 and commentaries, where this term is used in a similar context.)

The Maggid Mishneh mentions, however, that there are authorities who interpret בית as "house." According to their view, if two rooms are in the same house, one may recite kiddush in one and eat the Sabbath meal in the other, provided one has this intention when reciting kiddush. The Ramah (Orach Chayim 273:1) rules according to this interpretation.

36.

Even if the person had the intent of eating his meal in the second place when he recited kiddush and does so without any unnecessary interruption, he does not fulfill his obligation and must recite kiddush again.

37.

I.e., the kiddush is not part of the prayer service, but was instituted merely for the sake of these individuals. Nevertheless, in one of his responsa, the Rambam writes that after the custom of reciting kiddush in the synagogue was established, it should be continued even if there are no guests present in the synagogue. [At present, this custom is not usually followed in the Sephardic community, and there are many communities in the Ashkenazic community that have also discontinued it.]

38.

Rabbenu Yitzchak Alfasi explains the difference between the two blessings: Kiddush was instituted as the beginning of the Sabbath meal. Hence, it is also appropriate that it be recited over bread. Havdalah, by contrast, has no connection with a meal. Therefore, bread may not be used.

39.

In this ruling, the Rambam follows the interpretation of Pesachim 106b suggested by Rabbenu Yitzchak Alfasi and other Rishonim. There are, however, other interpretations of this passage, which lead to the ruling of the Ramah (cited in Note 27) that one should always wash one's hands before reciting kiddush.

(Although the Ramah's view is not accepted by the later authorities, the Mishnah Berurah 271:62 states that it is of sufficient weight to be relied on in the case described by the Rambam here: a person who desired to recite kiddush over wine, but washed his hands previously. Rather than recite the kiddush over bread, the person may recite kiddush over wine.)

40.

Pesachim 106a relates that this practice is derived from Exodus 20:8: "Remember the Sabbath day"; a remembrance must be made on the day itself. (See also Chapter 30, Halachah 9.)

41.

The Maggid Mishneh explains that this term is used as a euphemism, as one calls the blind sagi nahor, "of great light."

42.

The Ra'avad objects to the Rambam's ruling and rejects the concept of reciting kiddush on the Sabbath day. In his rebuttal of the Ra'avad's words, the Maggid Mishneh states that it is impossible to recite kiddush on the Sabbath day on bread. The Shulchan Aruch HaRav 289:2, however, uses the Ra'avad's ruling to reach a third position, that although kiddush is required during the day as well as at night, one may recite the kiddush on bread.

43.

The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 289:1) permits one to drink water before prayer, because "the obligation to recite kiddush is not incumbent on one at that time." This leniency has been extended by the later authorities to drinking coffee, and by some to partaking of pastry.

44.

From this time onward, the person must observe all the Sabbath laws. Note the Magen Avraham 267:1, which states that a person may only recite kiddush from plag haminchah onward - i.e., no more than one and a quarter "seasonal" hours (שעות זמנוית) before sunset.

45.

The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 293:3) prescribes this leniency only for a person who is אנוס, "pressured by forces beyond his control." Needless to say, even after reciting havdalah, the person must observe all the Sabbath laws. The blessing over fire should not be recited until sunset.

46.

I.e., as soon as the sun sets, one must cease eating and cover the table for kiddush. (See also Chapter 30, Halachah 4, which states that one should not plan to eat a meal on Friday afternoon, so that one will enter the Sabbath with an appetite.)

47.

The bread should always be covered during kiddush. In this instance, covering it serves a further purpose, making it appear as if it had been placed on the table in honor of the Sabbath (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 271:10).

48.

The Maggid Mishneh and the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 271:4) state that if one had been drinking wine previously, one should recite kiddush over a cup of wine without reciting the blessing borey pri hagefen.

49.

From the Rambam's wording, it would appear that he does not require the recitation of the blessing hamotzi when one resumes eating. Rabbenu Yitzchak Alfasi and Rabbenu Asher differ and require the recitation of this blessing, because at the time the person recited kiddush it was forbidden for him to partake of bread.

The Shulchan Aruch (loc. cit.) mentions both opinions. Shulchan Aruch HaRav 271:11 and the Mishnah Berurah 271:18 suggest following the Rambam's view. For whenever there is an unresolved question of whether or not a blessing should be recited, the practice is not to recite it.

50.

When one partakes of a portion of food the size of an olive after nightfall, one is obligated to mention the Sabbath in the grace, for this is considered to be one of the Sabbath meals (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 271:13; Mishnah Berurah 271:30).

51.

This refers to a meal including bread that he began before sunset. If one did not begin eating before sunset, eating or drinking is forbidden. (See Halachah 5.) Moreover, if one is eating or drinking, but is not in the midst of a meal including bread, one is obligated to cease eating at sunset. There are, however, certain opinions that allow one to begin eating after sunset or to continue partaking of foods outside a meal until a half hour before the appearance of the stars (Mishnah Berurah 299:1).

52.

I.e., one is allowed to continue eating after nightfall. Although the Sefer Mitzvot Gadol requires one to interrupt one's meal and recite havdalah directly after the appearance of three stars, this opinion is not accepted by the later authorities (Ramah, Orach Chayim 299:1).

53.

For mayim acharonim, the washing that precedes grace.

54.

For it is preferable - although not obligatory - to recite grace over a cup of wine. (See Hilchot Berachot 7:15.)

55.

The Ra'avad and others raise questions concerning the Rambam's decision. For Pesachim 102b states, as the Rambam himself quotes in the following halachah, "we do not observe mitzvot in bundles" - i.e., one cup of wine should not be used to fulfill two separate mitzvot.

The Maggid Mishneh offers a possible resolution for the Rambam's ruling: The above principle applies only when the two mitzvot are connected with two different times - e.g., kiddush and grace, as mentioned in the subsequent halachah. For grace is associated with the preceding meal, and kiddush with the Sabbath day that will follow. In contrast, in the present halachah, both havdalah and grace are associated with the previous time - the Sabbath - and the previous meal. Nevertheless, the Maggid Mishneh himself agrees with the Ra'avad that the Rambam's ruling should be followed only in a situation where one does not have another cup of wine available. This opinion is also quoted by the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 299:4) and accepted by the later authorities.

[Rav Kapach offers another justification for the Rambam's ruling, based on the final phrase of the following halachah, which states that both kiddush and grace are "mitzvot of the Torah." Havdalah, Rav Kapach explains, is Rabbinic in origin and therefore can be combined with grace and recited over a single cup. Although this resolution appears closest to the Rambam's wording in these two halachot, it is difficult to reconcile with the Rambam's statements at the beginning of the chapter and in Sefer HaMitzvot (Positive Commandment 155) that the mitzvah of reciting havdalah has its source in the Torah itself.]

56.

For drinking - even drinking wine - is not considered significant enough to override the obligation to recite havdalah.

57.

He must stop drinking at sunset (or half an hour before the appearance of the stars), but preferably should not recite havdalah until after the appearance of three stars.

58.

The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 271:6) also quotes the opinion of Rabbenu Asher, and states that reciting grace in such a situation generates several doubts: whether or not to mention the Sabbath in grace, whether or not to partake of the cup over which grace was recited, and whether or not a second meal is required so that kiddush will be "in the place of a meal."

Therefore, it is preferable to recite kiddush in the midst of the meal, as mentioned in the previous halachah, to eat a small amount on the Sabbath, and then to recite grace. The Ramah suggests following this view.

59.

See the notes on the previous halachah.

60.

See Hilchot Issurei Mizbe'ach 5:1, 6:9. (See also Hilchot Ma'achalot Asurot 11:9-10, which mentions these concepts with regard to the prohibition against using wine employed by gentiles for their libations.)

61.

Needless to say, this also applies to sugar.

62.

These are forbidden to be offered on the altar in any form, as derived from Leviticus 2:11, which states, "You shall present no leavening agent and no sweetener...."

63.

The western lands the Rambam refers to are Morocco and Muslim Spain.

The Jerusalem Talmud (Pesachim 10:1) states that one may use sweetened wines for kiddush. The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 272:8) mentions both opinions. The Ramah states that it is customary to follow the more lenient view. This issue is very significant, for almost all commercially produced wines have sugar added to them.

64.

This applies even if the wine's taste is unaffected (Shulchan Aruch, loc. cit.:1).

65.

In Talmudic times, wine that was left uncovered was forbidden, out of fear that poisonous snakes might have deposited venom in it. (See Hilchot Rotzeach UShemirat HaNefesh 11:6-8,10.) At present, this circumstance is extremely rare, and it is customary to partake of wine even after it has been left uncovered. Nevertheless, such wine is unacceptable for kiddush, because using it for a mitzvah is not considered respectful (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 272:1; Mishnah Berurah 272:3).

66.

In this instance as well, there are many authorities who differ with the Rambam and permit the use of such wine, based on the Jerusalem Talmud (loc. cit.). Here, also, the Shulchan Aruch (loc. cit. 272:8) mentions both opinions, and the Ramah states that it is customary to follow the more lenient view. This issue is also very relevant today, for many wines and grape juices undergo pasteurization before being sold.

67.

Indeed, as the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 204:4) states, it is not proper to recite the blessing borey pri hagefen over this beverage.

68.

The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 204:5) emphasizes that this law depends on the strength of the wine. Our wines are not as strong as those of the Talmudic period, and hence the ratio of one to four is not sufficient to require the blessing borey pri hagefen. This law is also relevant with regard to commercially produced wines, which are often heavily diluted before being sold.

69.

The Ra'avad states that this restriction applies only when one drinks from a cup of wine and not from a larger container. The Rambam's view is, however, accepted by the later authorities. (See Pesachim 106a, which mentions opinions that follow both views.)

70.

The Mishnah Berurah 271:43 questions whether a person who only has wine from which others have drunk should recite kiddush over it, or whether he should recite kiddush over bread instead.

71.

I.e., wine into which bread has been dipped. Beitzah 21b states that such wine is unfit for human consumption and should be given only to chickens. Even if wine has not been spoiled to this extent, after a person has drunk from a cup, reciting kiddush over it is forbidden.

72.

After stating this law, however, the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 272:3) states that it is preferable to use wine that is choice in all respects for the mitzvah.

73.

Indeed, as stated in Hilchot Berachot 7:15, wine should be diluted before using it for a "cup of blessing." (See, however, the notes on Halachah 15 regarding the extent of the dilution.)

74.

Although grape juice was acceptable as a wine libation only after the fact (בדיעבד, Hilchot Issurei Mizbe'ach 6:9), it is acceptable for kiddush. Nevertheless, using wine that has fermented is a more favorable way of performing the mitzvah (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 272:2; Mishnah Berurah 272:5).

75.

Needless to say, the grapes must be squeezed before the commencement of the Sabbath.

76.

For if there is no wine available, kiddush may - and should - be recited over bread.

77.

Since havdalah may not be recited over bread, these beverages should be used as an alternative.

This is the Maggid Mishneh's interpretation of the Rambam's ruling, based on Pesachim 107a. The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 272:9), however, mentions other views: that one may recite kiddush over beer in places where wine is not easily available, and that of Rabbenu Asher, which states that, at night, one should recite kiddush on bread if wine is not available. During the day, however, it is preferable to recite kiddush over other beverages. The Ramah states that Rabbenu Asher's view should be followed.

If wine is easily available, however, kiddush should not be recited on these other beverages. With regard to havdalah, the Ramah (Orach Chayim 296:2) states that it is preferable to recite havdalah over a cup of wine from which a person has drunk, rather than to use another beverage. Although this ruling is not accepted by the later authorities, Shulchan Aruch HaRav 296:8 states that a person who possesses wine at home should not recite havdalah over other beverages.

78.

It must be emphasized that the term חמר מדינה, "a beverage used as a substitute for wine in one's country," must be widely used in that country. If it is not, it is not acceptable. (See Mishnah Berurah 296:9.)

Water (Shulchan Aruch, loc. cit.), milk and oil (Mishnah Berurah 272:25), and apple cider and borscht (Mishnah Berurah 296:10) are also not considered acceptable. From these exclusions, we can appreciate the types of beverages that are acceptable.

79.

From the Rambam's description of the holidays as "Sabbaths of God," he appears to be implying that the mitzvah of reciting kiddush on these days is included in the mitzvah to "remember the Sabbath," which is the source for the mitzvah of reciting kiddush on the Sabbath. A similar intent appears in the comments of the Mechilta on that verse.

The Magen Avraham 271:1 cites the Maggid Mishneh as differing with this interpretation and stating that the obligation to recite kiddush on holidays is Rabbinic in origin.

80.

For chol hamo'ed has a lesser level of holiness, since the prohibitions against performing the forbidden labors do not apply. There are, however, restrictions against work, as stated in Hilchot Sh'vitat Yom Tov, Chapter 7.

81.

For the Sabbath represents a higher level of holiness, since even the labors associated with the preparation of food are prohibited.

82.

Since the holiday represents a lower level of holiness, it is not appropriate to say havdalah, but only kiddush. (See the conclusion of Chapter 5, where the two final points are mentioned.)

83.

God's choice of the Jewish people is mentioned at the outset in the kiddush for festivals, but not at the beginning of the kiddush for the Sabbath. Our Rabbis explain that God's choice of the Jewish people is associated with the exodus and the giving of the Torah. Since the uniqueness of the Sabbath was established before these events, it takes primacy. The festivals, by contrast, were established to commemorate those events that are directly associated with God's choice of the Jewish people.

Significantly, the authoritative manuscripts of the Mishneh Torah mention a slightly different text for this blessing. Instead of beginning "who has chosen us," it begins "who has sanctified us."

84.

See Hilchot Tefillah 2:5. The sanctity of the Jewish people is mentioned before the sanctity of the festivals, because God sanctifies the Jews and it is they - through their keeping the calendar through the sanctification of the months - who sanctify the festivals (Beitzah 17a).

85.

The sanctification of the Sabbath is mentioned first, because the Sabbath is sanctified by God directly, independent of the spiritual service of the Jewish people (ibid.).

86.

Leviticus 23:24 refers to Rosh HaShanah as "a day of recalling the sounding of the shofar." Numbers 29:1 refers to it as "a day of sounding the shofar." On this basis, our Rabbis understand "recalling" as a separate concept, and describe Rosh HaShanah as "the Day of Remembrance," the day when we ask God to remember us for good.

87.

In many communities, the text of this phrase is generally יום תרועה, "a day of sounding [the shofar]." Only on the Sabbath, when the shofar is not sounded, is the text employed by the Rambam used.

88.

As indicated by Rosh HaShanah 16a, our divine service on Rosh HaShanah centers on the acceptance of God as our King. Therefore, this concept is mentioned in the conclusion of this blessing.

89.

This law appears to corroborate the thesis that the Rambam sees kiddush on the holidays as an obligation with a source in the Torah itself. Therefore, he clarifies that just as Halachah 6 states that the Sages instituted the obligation that kiddush be recited over wine on the Sabbath, they imposed a similar obligation on holidays.

90.

See Halachah 9.

91.

See Halachah 10.

92.

It is customary merely to look at the festive candles on the table. One need not hold them together and gaze at one's nails, as is the usual custom on Saturday night.

93.

Merkevet HaMishneh notes that in Hilchot Tefillah 2:14, the Rambam states that in one's prayers during the evening service, one should add the phrase "You distinguished between the holiness of the holidays and the holiness of the Sabbath." He does not, however, recommend making this addition in havdalah. It is, however, customary in most communities to make this addition.

94.

See the following halachah.

95.

This also includes the second day of the holiday celebrated in the diaspora and the second day of Rosh HaShanah.

96.

As the Rambam states in Hilchot Berachot 11:9, the blessing Shehecheyanu is recited when performing any mitzvah that we are obligated to fulfill only at a specific time. This also applies to the mitzvah of observing the festivals. Needless to say, on Yom Kippur the blessing is recited in the synagogue, and not during kiddush. On Yom Kippur, women should recite this blessing while lighting candles and should not repeat it in the synagogue.

97.

Shemini Atzeret is, by contrast, considered to be a festival in its own right (Sukkah 47a), and we recite the blessing Shehecheyanu on that day and on Simchat Torah.

98.

See Sukkah 47b, which states that this wording implies that a person who failed to recite Shehecheyanu on the first day of the festival may compensate by reciting it later.

99.

Significantly, the Rambam does not mention the custom of reciting the passage containing select Biblical verses beginning Hiney E-l Yeshuati.

100.

See Halachah 29.

101.

Berachot 52b explains that this wording is chosen because there are many colors of light in a flame.

102.

Note the Rambam's Commentary on the Mishnah (Berachot 8:6), from which it appears that one is actually required to derive benefit from the havdalah light. (In this context, see the Midrash Sachar Tov, commenting on Psalms 35:10, which mentions the custom of gazing at one's nails in the light of the havdalah candles.) The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 298:4), by contrast, states that one must stand close enough to the light to benefit from it, implying that there is no obligation actually to derive benefit from the light.

103.

The Mishnah (loc. cit.) also mentions spices belonging to gentiles. The Rambam omits mention of this subject here, relying on his discussion of the prohibition against using such spices in Hilchot Berachot 9:7-9.

104.

Significantly, according to Rabbenu Yitzchak Alfasi, Berachot 52b appears to offer this rationale only with regard to spices belonging to gentiles. With regard to a gentile's flame, it offers another reasoning: because the gentile's flame has not rested on the Sabbath. In his Commentary on the Mishnah (loc. cit.), the Rambam also quotes Rabbenu Yitzchak Alfasi's view. In these halachot, however, he mentions this principle only in Halachah 27, appearing to indicate that the need for a candle to "rest" on the Sabbath applies only to candles lit by Jews. Since the gentiles are not bound by the Sabbath laws, this principle does not apply to them at all.

The Shulchan Aruch (loc. cit.:5) quotes Rabbenu Yitzchak Alfasi's view and forbids using a candle that a gentile lit during the day. With regard to a candle lit by a gentile at night, see the following halachah.

105.

In his explanation of these laws in his Commentary on the Mishnah (loc. cit.), the Rambam states:

It is explicitly forbidden by the Torah to benefit from any entity associated with the worship of false divinities, as [Deuteronomy 13:18] states, "Nothing that has been condemned shall cling to your hand."

The prohibition against benefiting from entities associated with false divinities is detailed in Chapters 7 and 8 of Hilchot Avodat Kochavim.

106.

For this was kindled to give honor to the deceased and not to provide light for others to benefit from (Shulchan Aruch, loc. cit.:12).

107.

The Maggid Mishneh specifies that this does not refer to a flame lit at a gathering of gentiles. Shulchan Aruch Rav 298:9 and the Mishnah Berurah 298:20 explain that this decision was rendered even though one might think it proper to forbid using a light taken from a gentile at night, lest one use a light kindled by the gentile during the day. According to the Rambam, however, the meaning is that since a Jew is involved, there is no intention for the worship of false divinities.

108.

According to the Rambam, it would appear that we suspect that the gentiles lit the flame for the sake of worshiping their divinities.

In contrast, the Magen Avraham 298:11 states that this is a decree, lest the gentile light from a flame kindled on the Sabbath directly after the Sabbath's conclusion. He continues postulating that, after the fact, a person who recites a blessing over such a flame is considered to have fulfilled his obligation.

109.

This ruling reflects the Rambam's conception of Berachot 53a. Since these fires are not generally kindled for the purpose of producing light, one should not use them for the blessing. Nevertheless, since it is customary to benefit also from their light, one fulfills his obligation.

Significantly, the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 298:10) and most other authorities follow Rav Hai Gaon's interpretation of the passage, which explains that directly after these flames are kindled, one may not recite a blessing over them, since they are then intended for purposes other than producing light. When, however, those purposes have been accomplished and the flames continue burning, one may recite the blessing over them.

110.

Note the Shulchan Aruch (loc. cit.:9), which states that this law applies only when the fire was kindled for the purpose of producing light. Otherwise, a blessing should not be recited.

111.

Candles are often lit in synagogues and houses of study as a token of respect for the place, and not to produce light. Therefore, it is not proper to recite a blessing over this light unless it was lit for the benefit of an individual, so that he will use it for his needs.

112.

Because it produces a large quantity of light with different colors of flame (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 298:4; Mishnah Berurah 298:5). Note Rav Tanchum of Jerusalem, who interprets the Hebrew אבוקה as referring to a beeswax candle. Although his interpretation is not accepted, it is customary to use beeswax for this mitzvah (ibid.).

113.

On the night following Yom Kippur, by contrast, we are obligated to search for a candle that burned throughout the day, over which to recite the blessing (Maggid Mishneh; Shulchan Aruch, loc. cit.:1).

114.

Although this fire was kindled on the Sabbath, since it was permitted to do so, it may be used for the mitzvah. If, however, it was kindled on the Sabbath in transgression of the law, it may not be used, for the light used for this blessing must have "rested from sin" on the Sabbath (Maggid Mishneh).

115.

Bereshit Rabbah 12:6) relates that after the sun set following the first Sabbath, Adam became frightened. G‑d prepared two boards for him. He struck them together and brought forth fire.

116.

I.e., we do not recite the blessing over light that was kindled on that night, but on a candle that had burned throughout the holiday. It is, however, acceptable to use a candle that was lit from a candle that burned throughout the holiday (Shulchan Aruch and Ramah, Orach Chayim 624:5).

117.

I.e., from Sunday to Thursday. As mentioned in Halachah 18, when a holiday falls on Friday, havdalah is not said.

118.

There is a slight imprecision with the Rambam's wording, for it is not customary to recite the blessing for spices at this time, and we are forbidden to recite the blessing over light.

119.

See Beitzah 16a, which mentions that God grants us an extra soul on the Sabbath, but takes away this gift after the Sabbath's conclusion. This gift is granted on the Sabbath alone, and not on festivals. Hence the distinction mentioned in the previous halachah.

120.

See Berachot 43b, which describes fragrance as an element that brings joy to the soul.

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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 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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