An earthenware k'li is not susceptible to ritual impurity unless it has a receptacle and was made with the intent that it serve as a receptacle. If, by contrast it does not have a receptacle or even if it has a receptacle, but it was not made to serve that purpose, it is not susceptible to impurity at all, neither according to Scriptural Law, nor Rabbinic decree. Accordingly, a chair, a bed, a bench, a candelabra, or a table made of earthenware or any similar k'li that does not have a receptacle are not susceptible to impurity.

Similarly, a large pipe even though water passes though it, and even it is curved, and even when it holds water, is pure, because it was not intended to contain water, but rather that the water should pass through it. Similarly, a barrel used by swimmers is not susceptible to impurity. This ruling also applies to a cask at the side of the base of a large barrel , because it was made to serve as a handle for those who carry the large barrel and was not intended to serve as a receptacle.


כְּלִי חֶרֶס אֵינוֹ מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה עַד שֶׁיִּהְיֶה מְקַבֵּל וְעָשׂוּי לְקַבָּלה. אֲבָל אִם לֹא הָיָה לוֹ בֵּית קִבּוּל אוֹ שֶׁהָיָה מְקַבֵּל וְלֹא נַעֲשָׂה לְקַבָּלָה אֵינוֹ מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה כְּלָל לֹא מִן הַתּוֹרָה וְלֹא מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים. לְפִיכָךְ הַכִּסֵּא וְהַמִּטָּה וְהַסַּפְסָל וְהַמְּנוֹרָה וְהַשֻּׁלְחָן שֶׁל חֶרֶס. וְכֵן כָּל כַּיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן מִכֵּלִים שֶׁאֵין לָהֶם תּוֹךְ אֵינָן מְקַבְּלִין טֻמְאָה. וְכֵן הַסִּילוֹנוֹת שֶׁהַמַּיִם מְהַלְּכִין בָּהֶן אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהֵן כְּפוּפִין וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהֵן מְקַבְּלִין הֲרֵי הֵן טְהוֹרִין מִפְּנֵי שֶׁלֹּא נַעֲשׂוּ לְקַבָּלָה אֶלָּא כְּדֵי שֶׁיֵּצְאוּ מֵהֶן הַמַּיִם. וְכֵן חָבִית שֶׁל שַׁיָּטִים וְחָבִית הַדְּפוּנָה בְּשׁוּלֵי הַמַּחַץ הוֹאִיל וְנַעֲשֵׂית כְּמוֹ בֵּית יָד שֶׁנּוֹשְׂאִין בָּהּ הַמַּחַץ וְלֹא נַעֲשֵׂית לְקַבָּלָה אֵינָהּ מְקַבֶּלֶת טֻמְאָה:


A lantern that has a receptacle for oil is susceptible to ritual impurity. If it lacks one, it is pure. Similarly, a potter's frame that has a receptacle is susceptible to impurity.


פָּנָס שֶׁהָיָה בּוֹ בֵּית קִבּוּל שֶׁמֶן מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה וְשֶׁאֵין בּוֹ טָהוֹר. וְכֵן מְגוּפַת הַיּוֹצְרִים שֶׁיֵּשׁ לָהּ תּוֹךְ טְמֵאָה:


A homeowner's funnel is pure. A perfumer's funnel is susceptible to impurity, because he turns it on its side so that his customers can smell the fragrance.


מַשְׁפֵּךְ שֶׁל בַּעֲלֵי בָּתִּים טָהוֹר. וְשֶׁל רוֹכְלִין מִתְטַמֵּא מִפְּנֵי שֶׁמַּטֵּהוּ עַל צִדּוֹ וּמֵרִיחַ בּוֹ לַלּוֹקֵחַ:


Covers for jugs of wine, jugs of oil, and barrels are pure, for they were not made to serve as receptacles. If a cover was altered so that it could be functional, it is susceptible to impurity.


כִּסּוּי כַּדֵּי יַיִן וְכַדֵּי שֶׁמֶן וְהֶחָבִיּוֹת טְהוֹרוֹת שֶׁלֹּא נַעֲשׂוּ לְקַבָּלָה. וְאִם הִתְקִינָן לְתַשְׁמִישׁ מִתְטַמְּאִין:


When the cover of a frying pan has a hole or a protrusion on its top, it is pure. If it does not have a hole or a protrusion, it is susceptible to impurity, because a woman will use it to drain off the sauce in which vegetables were cooked. This is the general principle: Anything that serves an earthenware container while it is turned upside down is pure.


כִּסּוּי הָאִלְפָּס בִּזְמַן שֶׁהוּא נָקוּב וְיֵשׁ לוֹ חִדּוּד טָהוֹר. וְאִם אֵינוֹ נָקוּב וְאֵין לוֹ חִדּוּד מִתְטַמֵּא מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהָאִשָּׁה מְסַנֶּנֶת לְתוֹכוֹ אֶת הַיָּרָק. זֶה הַכְּלָל כָּל הַמְשַׁמֵּשׁ בִּכְלִי חֶרֶס כְּשֶׁהוּא כָּפוּי טָהוֹר:


A titrus, even though it has holes and water drips out from them, is nevertheless susceptible to impurity, because the water collects at its sides, and they are intended to serve as receptacles.


טִיטְרוֹס אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהוּא נָקוּב וּמוֹצִיא פְּרוּטוֹת מִתְטַמֵּא שֶׁהֲרֵי הַמַּיִם מִתְכַּנְּסִין בַּצְּדָדִין וְהֵן עֲשׂוּיִין לְקַבָּלָה:


An earthenware torch into which patches of cloth and oil are placed to burn, is susceptible to impurity. Similarly, a receptacle that is placed under a lamp to collect drops of oil is susceptible to impurity.


הַלַּפִּיד שֶׁל חֶרֶס שֶׁמַּנִּיחִין מַטְלִיּוֹת הַבְּגָדִים וְהַשֶּׁמֶן בְּתוֹכוֹ וְהוּא דּוֹלֵק מִתְטַמֵּא. וְכֵן כְּלִי שֶׁמַּנִּיחִין תַּחַת הַנֵּרוֹת לְקַבֵּל הַשֶּׁמֶן מִתְטַמֵּא:


A base that is placed under containers to collect the liquids that flow from the container is susceptible to impurity.


גִּסְטְרָא שֶׁמַּנִּיחִין תַּחַת הַכֵּלִים לְקַבֵּל מַשְׁקִין הַנּוֹזְלִין מִן הַכְּלִי מְקַבְּלִין טֻמְאָה:


A boat made of earthenware, even though it serves as a receptacle, is not susceptible to impurity. The rationale is that a boat is not in the category of the keilim mentioned in the Torah. This applies whether it is made of earthenware or of wood and whether it is large or small.


סְפִינָה שֶׁל חֶרֶס אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהִיא מְקַבֶּלֶת אֵינָהּ מְקַבֶּלֶת טֻמְאָה שֶׁאֵין הַסְּפִינָה בִּכְלַל הַכֵּלִים הָאֲמוּרִין בַּתּוֹרָה בֵּין הִיא שֶׁל חֶרֶס בֵּין הִיא שֶׁל עֵץ בֵּין גְּדוֹלָה בֵּין קְטַנָּה:


Whenever keilim have been broken and their form has been destroyed, their broken fragments are not susceptible to impurity even if those fragments are functional with the exception of the fragments of earthenware containers. With regard to them, we follow the principle: If there is an earthenware fragment that can serve as a receptacle, it is susceptible to impurity. This is derived from Leviticus 11:33 which states: "Any earthenware container." According to the Oral Tradition, it was understood that this phrase was mentioned only to include the broken shards of earthenware containers.

When does the above apply? When the earthenware shard has a receptacle that can hold liquids when the shard is resting on its base and not leaning. If, however, it is fit to hold liquids only when it is leaned against a support, it is not susceptible to impurity.


כָּל הַכֵּלִים שֶׁנִּשְׁבְּרוּ וְנִפְסְדָה צוּרָתָן אֵין שִׁבְרֵיהֶן מְקַבְּלִין טֻמְאָה אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאוֹתָן הַשְּׁבָרִים רְאוּיִין לְתַשְׁמִישׁ. חוּץ מִשִּׁבְרֵי כְּלֵי חֶרֶס שֶׁאִם הָיָה בָּהֶן חֶרֶס הָרָאוּי לְקַבֵּל הֲרֵי הוּא מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ויקרא יא לג) "וְכָל כְּלִי חֶרֶס" מִפִּי הַשְּׁמוּעָה לָמְדוּ שֶׁזֶּה לֹא בָּא לְרַבּוֹת אֶלָּא שִׁבְרֵי כְּלֵי חֶרֶס. בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים כְּשֶׁהָיָה לְחֶרֶס זֶה תּוֹךְ לְקַבֵּל בּוֹ הַמַּשְׁקִין כְּשֶׁהָיָה הַחֶרֶס יוֹשֵׁב לֹא סָמוּךְ. אֲבָל אִם אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לְקַבֵּל אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן סוֹמְכִין אוֹתוֹ אֵינוֹ מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה:


When an earthenware container cannot rest on its base because of a handle or it has a protrusion and the protrusion causes it to lean to one side, it is pure even though the handle was removed or the protrusion was broken. The rationale is that whenever an earthenware container is considered as pure for even one moment, it is never susceptible to impurity again.


הַחֶרֶס שֶׁאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לֵישֵׁב כְּדֵי שֶׁיְּקַבֵּל מִפְּנֵי אָזְנוֹ אוֹ שֶׁהָיָה בּוֹ חִדּוּד וְהַחִדּוּד מַכְרִיעוֹ לְצַד אַחֵר הֲרֵי זֶה טָהוֹר אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁנִּטְּלָה הָאֹזֶן אוֹ נִשְׁבַּר הַחִדּוּד שֶׁכָּל כְּלִי חֶרֶס שֶׁטָּהַר שָׁעָה אַחַת אֵין לוֹ טֻמְאָה לְעוֹלָם:


When there is an earthenware container that has a pointed base, e.g., a basin with a pointed base, that was broken and its base is still able to serve as a container, even though the base cannot hold liquids unless it is supported, e.g., the bases of containers used to draw water and the bases of goblets, they are susceptible to ritual impurity, for this is the way they were made at the outset, that their bases would contain liquids when they would be supported or held.


כְּלֵי חֶרֶס שֶׁשּׁוּלֵיהֶן חַדִּין כְּמִזְרָקוֹת שֶׁנִּשְׁבְּרוּ וְשׁוּלֵיהֶן מְקַבְּלִין אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵינָן מְקַבְּלִין אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן נִסְמְכוּ כְּגוֹן שׁוּלֵי הַקֻּרְפִיוֹת וְהַכּוֹסוֹת הֲרֵי אֵלּוּ מְקַבְּלִין טֻמְאָה. שֶׁלְּכָךְ נַעֲשׂוּ מִתְּחִלָּתָן שֶׁיִּהְיוּ שׁוּלֵיהֶן מְקַבְּלִין בִּסְמִיכָה אוֹ בַּאֲחִיזָה:


How much liquid must the broken pieces of an earthenware container be able to contain to be susceptible to impurity? When the container while intact was between the size that would enable it to contain enough liquid to rub on a small person and the size of a barrel that could container a se'ah or close to that and it was broken, if the shards - either from the base or the wall - were able to contain a revi'it, they are susceptible to impurity.


כַּמָּה יְקַבֵּל הַחֶרֶס וְיִהְיֶה מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה. אִם הָיָה הַכְּלִי כְּשֶׁהָיָה שָׁלֵם וּמֵכִיל כְּדֵי סִכַּת אָדָם קָטָן עַד חָבִיּוֹת שֶׁהֵן מְקַבְּלוֹת כִּסְאָהּ אוֹ קָרוֹב וְנִשְׁבְּרוּ וְנִשְׁאַר בָּחֲרָסִים בֵּין מִקַּרְקְעֵיהֶן בֵּין מִדָּפְנֵיהֶן חֶרֶס שֶׁהוּא מְקַבֵּל כְּשֶׁהוּא יוֹשֵׁב רְבִיעִית הֲרֵי זֶה מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה:


If the vessel was a large barrel that could contain between a se'ah and two se'ah or more, if the shard that remains is large enough to contain half a log, it is susceptible to impurity. If originally the vessel was extremely large - from a barrel that could contain two se'ah until a large vat - and it broke, if a shard that remained could contain a log, it is susceptible to impurity. If the shards would contain less than these measures, they are not susceptible to impurity.


הָיָה הַכְּלִי מֵחָבִית הַמְּכִילָה כִּסְאָה עַד חָבִית הַמְכִילָה סָאתַיִם אוֹ יֶתֶר וְנִשְׁבְּרָה אִם הָיָה בַּחֶרֶס הַנִּשְׁאָר כְּדֵי לְקַבֵּל חֲצִי לוֹג הֲרֵי זֶה מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה. הָיָה הַכְּלִי מֵחָבִית הַמְכִילָה סָאתַיִם עַד חֲצָבִים גְּדוֹלִים וְנִשְׁבְּרוּ אִם נִשְׁאַר מֵהֶן חֶרֶס הַמְקַבֵּל לוֹג הֲרֵי זֶה מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה. הָיוּ הַחֲרָסִים מְקַבְּלִין פָּחוֹת מִשִּׁעוּרִין אֵלּוּ אֵין מְקַבְּלִין טֻמְאָה:


When a small earthenware container, e.g., a cruse or the like, breaks, but there remains from its bottom a shard that can hold even the slightest amount of liquid when resting on its base, even though it is very narrow, as thin as possible for a small container, it is susceptible to impurity. If a shard from its walls that could contain liquids remains, it is not susceptible to impurity. The rationale is that the walls of these containers and the like are fundamentally flat; they do not have a hollow that is apparent. Thus they are like flat earthenware implements.


כְּלִי חֶרֶס קָטָן כְּגוֹן הַפַּךְ וְכַיּוֹצֵא בּוֹ שֶׁנִּשְׁבַּר וְנִשְׁאַר מִקַּרְקָעִיתוֹ חֶרֶס הַמְקַבֵּל כָּל שֶׁהוּא כְּשֶׁהוּא יוֹשֵׁב וְהָיָה חַד בְּיוֹתֵר שֶׁנִּמְצָא כִּכְלִי קָטָן הֲרֵי זֶה מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה. וְאִם נִשְׁאַר מִדָּפְנוֹתֵיהֶן חֶרֶס הַמְקַבֵּל אֵינוֹ מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה לְפִי שֶׁדָּפְנוֹת כֵּלִים אֵלּוּ וְכַיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן כְּשָׁוִין הֵן וְאֵין לָהֶן תּוֹךְ הַנִּכָּר וְנִמְצְאוּ כִּפְשׁוּטֵי כְּלֵי חֶרֶס:


The prevailing assumption is that wherever shards are found, they are pure except those found in a potter's workshop, because the majority of those are considered as bases for keilim. And a base for an implement is susceptible to impurity even if it is a broken vessel.


חֶזְקַת חֲרָסִים הַנִּמְצָאִים בְּכָל מָקוֹם טְהוֹרִים חוּץ מֵהַנִּמְצָאִים בְּבֵית הַיּוֹצֵר מִפְּנֵי שֶׁרֻבָּן גִּסְטְרָיוֹת הֵן לַכֵּלִים וְהַגִּסְטְרָא מְקַבֶּלֶת טֻמְאָה אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהִיא מִשִּׁבְרֵי כֵּלִים: