1

A woman from whose womb there issued a drop of blood, be it ever so small, regardless of the circumstances, whether it is in her nature, as some women, to have a regular period or an irregular period; even if she experienced some sort of accident which caused blood to issue from her womb, she is a niddah (menstrually unclean), until she counts seven clean days, and properly performs the ritual immersion. Anyone who cohabitates with her when she is menstrually unclean, receives the punishment of koras.1 She too receives the punishment, koras. For touching in an intimate manner, their punishment is flagellation.2

א

כָּל אִשָּׁה שֶנֶּעֶקְרָה מִּמְּקוֹרָהּ טִפַּת דָּם, אֲפִלּוּ כָּל שֶׁהִיא, יִהְיֶה בְאֵיזֶה אֹפֶן שֶׁיִהְיֶה, בֵּין בְּטִבְעָהּ, כְּדֶרֶךְ הַנָּשִׁים לִרְאוֹת בִּזְמַנִּים יְדוּעִים, אוֹ שֶׁלֹּא בִזְמַנָּה וַאֲפִלּוּ אֵרַע לָהּ אֵיזֶה אֹנֶס, אֲשֶׁר מֵחֲמַת זֶה יָצָא מִמְּקוֹרָהּ דָּם, הֲרֵי הִיא טְמֵאָה נִדָּה, עַד שֶׁתִּסְפֹּר שִׁבְעָה נְקִיִים וְתִטְבֹּל כָּרָאוּי. וְכָל הַבָּא עָלֶיהָ בְּטֻמְאָתָהּ, חַיַב כָּרֵת, וְכֵן הִיא חַיֶבֶת כָּרֵת. וְעַל הַנְּגִיעָה דֶּרֶךְ חִבָּה, חַיָבִים מַלְקוּת.

2

Even if she did not feel the issue of blood from her womb, but found a stain of blood on her body, or garment, or sheet, or any other place, and she is unable to attribute its presence to any source other than from her womb, she is unclean.3 A woman who finds a stain that is not actually red, but is not actually white either,4 must consult a competent Rav, for concerning this there are many divergent laws regarding the size of the stain. There are also many laws regarding to what it can be attributed and to what it cannot be attributed. There is also a distinction as to the time she found it, whether it was on her menstrually clean days or on the first days of her seven clean days.

ב

אֲפִלּוּ לֹא הִרְגִּשָׁה שֶׁיָצָא דָם מִמְּקוֹרָהּ, אֶלָּא שֶׁמָּצְאָה כֶּתֶם דָּם בִּבְשָׂרָהּ, אוֹ בַּחֲלוּקָהּ אוֹ בִּסְדִינָהּ אוֹ בִּשְׁאָר מָקוֹם, וְאֵין לָהּ לִתְלוֹת שֶׁבָּא מִמָּקוֹם אַחֵר, אֶלָּא שֶׁבָּא מִמְּקוֹרָהּ, הֲרֵי הִיא טְמֵאָה. וְכָל אִשָּׁה שֶׁמָּצְאָה אֵיזֶה כֶּתֶם, אֲפִלּוּ אֵינוֹ אָדֹם מַמָּשׁ, אֶלָּא שֶׁאֵינוֹ לָבָן מַמָּשׁ, צְרִיכָה לַעֲשׂוֹת שְׁאֵלַת חָכָם, כִּי יֵשׁ בָּזֶה הַרְבֵּה חִלּוּקֵי דִינִים בְּעִנְיַן גַּדְלוּת וְקַטְנוּת הַכֶּתֶם, וְגַם בְּעִנְיַן הַתְּלִיָה, בַּמֶּה יְכוֹלִין לִתְלוֹתוֹ וּבַמָּה אֵין יְכוֹלִין לִתְלוֹתוֹ, וְגַם יֵשׁ חִלּוּק בְּאֵיזֶה זְמַן שֶמָּצְאָה אוֹתוֹ, אִם בְּיָמִים שֶׁהִיא טְהוֹרָה אוֹ בַּיָמִים הָרִאשׁוֹנִים מִשִּבְעָה נְקִיִּים.

3

If a woman senses that her womb has opened [i.e. she senses the beginning of mensruation], even if she examined herself immediately and found nothing, she is menstrually unclean.5 (It is necessary to let women know this, for many women do not know it.) But if she found a white secretion from her body without any reddish admixture, she is clean.

ג

אִֹשָׁה שֶׁהִרְגִישָׁה שֶׁנִּפְתַּח מְקוֹרָהּ, אֲפִלּוּ בָּדְקָה אֶת עַצְמָהּ מִיָד וְלֹא מָצְאָה כְלוּם, הֲרֵי הִיא טְמֵאָה. (וּצְרִיכִין לְהוֹדִיעַ זֹאת לַנָּשִׁים, כִּי הַרְבֵּה נָשִׁים אֵינָן יוֹדְעוֹת זֹאת). אֲבָל אִם מָצְאָה שֶׁיָצְאָה מִמֶּנָּה אֵיזוֹ לֵחָה לְבָנָה בְּלִי שׁוּם תַּעֲרֹבֶת אַדְמוּמִית, הֲרֵי הִיא טְהוֹרָה.

4

It is written, "And to a woman who is menstrually unclean, you shall not approach."6 Since it is written "You shall not approach," it is explained, that any kind of approach is forbidden. You should not jest (with her), and should not indulge in levity with her, or even speak words that may lead to sin.7 However, you may be secluded with her, for since you have had marital relations with her, and she will be permitted to you after immersion, your impulse will not be that strong, and we are not concerned that you might cohabit with her when it is forbidden.

ד

כְּתִיב, וְאֶלֹ אִשָּׁה בְּנִדַּת טֻמְאָתָהּ לֹא תִקְרָב, מִדִּכְתִיב לֹא תִקְרָב, דָּרְשֵׁינָן, שֶׁכָּל מִינֵי קְרִיבָה אֲסוּרִים, שֶלֹּא יִשְׂחוֹק וְלֹא יָקֵל רֹאשׁוֹ עִמָּהּ אֲפִלּוּ בִדְבָרִים, הַמַרְגִילִין לַעֲבֵרָה. אֲבָל מֻתָּר לְהִתְיַחֵד עִמָּהּ, דְּכֵיוָן שֶׁכְּבָר בָּא עָלֶיהָ, וְגַם יֵשׁ לָהּ הֶתֵּר לְאַחַר שֶׁתִּטְבֹּל, לָא תַקִיף יִצְרֵהּ, וְלָא חָיְשֵׁינָן שֶׁמָּא יָבוֹא עָלֶיהָ בְּאִיסּוּר.

5

You may not touch your wife (during that period) even on the small finger, and you may not hand her anything,8 not even a long object, nor may you receive anything from her hand. Also, throwing anything from your hand into her hand or from her hand to yours is forbidden.

ה

לֹא יִגַּע בָּהּ אֲפִלּוּ בְּאֶצְבַּע קְטַנָּה, וְלֹא יוֹשִׁיט מִיָדוֹ לְיָדָהּ אֲפִלּוּ דָבָר אָרֹךְ, וְכֵן לֹא יְקַבֵּל מִיָדָּהּ. וְכֵן זְרִיקָה מִיָדוֹ לְיָדָהּ אוֹ מִיָדָהּ לְיָדוֹ, אֲסוּרָה.

6

You may not eat with her at the table9 unless you make a noticeable change; for example, separating your plate from her plate, with something you do not usually place there at other times, or she should change her place. If you are accustomed, when she is menstrually clean, to eat together from one plate, and now when she is unclean you eat from separate plates, this change is sufficient.10

ו

לֹא יֹאכַל עִמָּהּ עַל הַשֻּׁלְחָן, אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן יֵשׁ אֵיזֶה שִׁנוּי, דְּהַיְנוּ שֶׁיִהְיֶה אֵיזֶה דָבָר מַפְסִיק בֵּין קְעָרָה שֶׁלּוֹ לִקְעָרָה שֶׁלָּהּ, דָּבָר שֶׁאֵין דַּרְכּוֹ לְהַנִּיחוֹ שָׁם בְּפַעַם אַחֶרֶת, אוֹ שֶׁתְּשַׁנֶה אֶת מְקוֹמָהּ. וְאִם דַּרְכָּן שֶׁכְּשֶׁהִיא טְהוֹרָה אוֹכְלִין מִתּוֹךְ קְעָרָה אַחַת, וְעַתָּה אוֹכְלִין כָּל אֶחָד מִתּוֹךְ קְעָרָה אַחֶרֶת, סַגֵּי בְּהָכִי.

7

You are not allowed to drink what she leaves over in her cup. But if someone else drank from the cup after her, or it has been poured into another cup you are permitted to drink it. If she drank from it and you are unaware of it, and you want to drink from that cup, she need not tell you that she drank from it. (But if you know she drank from it but do not know that she is a niddah, it would seem that she has to inform you). She is permitted to drink the leftovers from your cup. Some authorities maintain that just as you are forbidden to drink the leftovers from her cup so too you are forbidden11 to eat from her leftover food.12

ז

לֹא יִשְׁתֶּה מִשִׁיוּרֵי הַכּוֹס שֶׁשָׁתְתָה הִיא. וְאִם הִפְסִיק אָדָם אַחֵר בֵּינֵיהֶם, אוֹ שֶׁהוּרַק אֶל כּוֹס אַחֵר, שָׁרֵי. וְאִם שָׁתְתָה וְהוּא אֵינוֹ יוֹדֵעַ, וְרוֹצֶה לִשְׁתּוֹת מִכּוֹס זֶה, אֵינָהּ צְרִיכָה לְהַגִּיד לוֹ שֶׁשָׁתְתָה הִיא מִמֶּנוּ. (אֲבָל אִם יָדַע שֶׁשָׁתְתָה הִיא, אֶלָּא שֶׁלֹּא יָדַע שֶׁהִיא נִדָּה, כָּתַבְתִּי בְּסִפְרִי לֶחֶם וְשִׂמְלָה, כִּי נִרְאֶה דִּצְרִיכָה לְהַגִּיד לוֹ). הִיא מֻתֶּרֶת לִשְׁתּוֹת מִשִּׁיוּרֵי כּוֹס שֶלּוֹ. יֵשׁ אוֹמְרִים, דִּכְשֵׁם שֶׁאָסוּר לִשְׁתּוֹת מִשִׁיּוּרֵי כּוֹס שֶׁלָּהּ, כָּךְ אָסוּר לֶאֱכוֹל מִשִׁיּוּרֵי מַאֲכָל שֶׁלָּהּ.

8

You may not sleep together in the same bed, even if the bed is not exclusively hers, and even if you are both fully clothed and do not touch one another, and even if each of you have a separate mattress. And even to lie on two separate beds, if the beds touch one another it is forbidden. If you both lie on the ground, you should not lie facing one another unless there is a sizable distance between you and her. The same applies if you sleep in two separate beds placed parallel to one another, whereby sometimes you face one another. Even though there is space between the beds, it is forbidden unless there is a sizable space between the beds.13 The husband is forbidden even to sit on the bed14 reserved for her, even when she is not present. She is forbidden to sleep on the bed reserved for her husband. But so far as her sitting on it, you need not be stringent.

ח

לֹא יִישַׁן עִמָּהּ בְמִטָּה אַחַת, אֲפִלּוּ אֵין הַמִּטָּה מְיֻחֶדֶת לָּהּ. וַאֲפִלּוּ כָּל אֶחָד בְּבִגְדוֹ וְאֵין נוֹגְעִין זֶה בָזֶה. וַאֲפִלּוּ יֵשׁ שׁוֹכְבִים בִּשְׁתֵּי מִטּוֹת, וְהַמִּטּוֹת נוֹגְעוֹת זוֹ בָזוֹ, אָסוּר. וְאִם שׁוֹכְבִין עַל הָאָרֶץ, לֹא יִשְׁכְּבוּ פָּנִים כְּנֶגֶד פָּנִים, אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן יֵשׁ מֶרְחָק רַב בֵּינֵיהֶם. וְהוּא הַדִּין אִם יְשֵׁנִים בִּשְׁתֵּי מִטּוֹת סְמוּכוֹת זוֹ לָזוֹ בְּאָרְכָּן בְּאֹפֶן שֶׁלִפְעָמִים הֵם פָּנִים כְּנֶגֶד פָּנִים, אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁיֵשׁ הֶפְסֵק בֵּין הַמִּטּוֹת, יֵשׁ לֶאֱסֹר, אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן יֵשׁ מֶרְחָק רַב בֵּינֵיהֶם. וְאָסוּר לְבַּעַל אֲפִלּוּ לֵישֵׁב עַל הַמִּטָּה הַמְיֻחֶדֶת לָהּ, וַאֲפִלּוּ שֶׁלֹּא בְפָנֶיהָ. וְהִיא, אֲסוּרָה לִישֹׁן עַל הַמִּטָּה הַמְיֻחֶדֶת לוֹ. אֲבָל לֵישֵׁב עָלֶיהָ, אֵין לְהַחְמִיר.

9

It is forbidden to sit together on a long bench, if it sways. If someone else sits15 between you, it is permitted. You may not ride together in the same wagon or on the same boat, if it is just a pleasure trip, like riding through parks, orchards or similar excursions. But if you are travelling from city to city on business, it is permitted, even though you are by yourselves; provided you are seated in a way that you will not touch one another.

ט

אֲסוּרִין לֵישֵׁב עַל סַפְסָל אָרֹךְ שֶׁהוּא מִתְנַדְנֵד. וְאִם אָדָם אַחֵר מַפְסִיק בֵּינֵיהֶם, מֻתָּר. וְלֹא יֵלְכוּ בַּעֲגָלָה אַחַת אוֹ בִּסְפִינָה אַחַת, אִם הוֹלְכִין רַק דֶּרֶךְ טִיּוּל, כְּגוֹן לְגִנּוֹת וּלְפַרְדֵּסִים וְכַיוֹצֵא בָזֶה. אֲבָל אִם הוֹלְכִין מֵעִיר לְעִיר לְעִסְקֵיהֶם, מֻתָּר. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהֵן לְבַדָּם, וּבִלְבַד שֶיֵשְׁבוּ בְאֹפֶן שֶׁלֹּא יִגְּעוּ זֶה בָזֶה.

10

You must not look at any part of her body that she usually keeps covered.16 But on those parts that are usually not covered, you are permitted to look even if you derive pleasure from it. You are forbidden to scent her personal perfume, and you are forbidden to hear her sing.

י

לֹא יִסְתַּכֵּל בְּשׁוּם מָקוֹם מִגּוּפָהּ בְּמָקוֹם שֶדַּרְכָּהּ לְכַסּוֹת. אֲבָל בַּמְּקוֹמוֹת הַגְלוּיִים, מֻתָּר לוֹ לְהִסְתַּכֵּל, אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהוּא נֶהֱנֶה. אָסוּר לְהָרִיחַ בִּבְשָׂמִים הַמְיֻחָדִים לָהּ, וְאָסוּר לִשְׁמֹעַ קוֹל זֶמֶר שֶלָּהּ.

11

It is proper that she wear special clothes17 on the days of her impurity, so that they will both always remember that she is menstrually unclean. With great halachic difficulty, the Sages permitted her to use cosmetics (rouge, lipstick etc.), and to dress in colorful (attractive) clothing18 during her days of impurity, so that she will not become repulsive to her husband.

יא

רָאוּי שֶתְּיַחֵד לָהּ בְּגָדִים לִימֵי נִדָּתָהּ, כְּדֵי שֶׁיִהְיוּ שְׁנֵיהֶם זוֹכְרִים תָּמִיד שֶׁהִיא נִדָּה. וּבְקשִׁי הִתִּירוּ לָהּ שֶׁתִּכְחֹל וְתִפְקֹס וְתִתְקַשֵּׁט בְּבִגְדֵי צִבְעוֹנִין בִּימֵי נִדָּתָהּ, אֶלָּא כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא תִתְגַּנֶּה עַל בַּעְלָהּ.

12

She may not pour a cup of wine for you in your presence,19 nor may she bring it and place it in front of you at the table;20 nor may she make your bed in your presence. But when not in your presence, all these things are permitted, even though you know that she did them. She is forbidden to pour water21 to wash your face and hands and feet, even if the water is cold.

יב

לֹא תִמְזֹג לוֹ כּוֹס יַיִן בְפָנָיו אוֹ לַהֲבִיאוֹ לוֹ וּלְהַנִּיחוֹ לְפָנָיו עַל הַשֻּׁלְחָן, וְלֹא תַצִּיעַ לוֹ מִטָּתוֹ בְפָנָיו. אֲבָל שֶלֹּא בְפָנָיו, הַכֹּל מֻתָּר, אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהוּא יוֹדֵע שֶהִיא עָשָׂתָה. וַאֲסוּרָה לִצּוֹק לוֹ מַיִם לִרְחוֹץ פָּנָיו יָדָיו וְרַגְלָיו, וַאֲפִלּוּ מַיִם צוּנְנִים.

13

Just as she is forbidden to pour a cup of wine for you, so are you forbidden to pour wine for her.22 Furthermore, even to send her a cup of wine specially for her, even if it is a cup over which a berachah has been pronounced, is forbidden.23

יג

כְּשֵׁם שֶׁהִיא אֲסוּרָה לִמְזֹג לוֹ אֶת הַכּוֹס, כָּךְ הוּא אָסוּר לִמְזֹג לָהּ. וְלֹא עוֹד, אֶלָּא אֲפִלּוּ לִשְׁלֹחַ לָהּ כּוֹס יַיִן הַמְיֻחָד לָהּ, אֲפִלּוּ הוּא כּוֹס שֶל בְּרָכָה, אָסוּר.

14

If you are sick and there is no one but her to attend you, she is permitted to attend you24 but without direct contact with your body,25 but rather by means of some object. She may even raise you up, lay you down, and support you. But she must be very careful not to wash your face, hands, and feet, or make your bed in your presence. If the woman is sick (when she is a niddah), her husband is forbidden to attend her, even without touching her,26 except in a case of extreme emergency, when it is impossible to find someone else to attend her. If the husband is a physician, and there is no other physician as competent as himself, he may feel her pulse, since he is not doing it out of desire or love.

יד

אִם הוּא חוֹלֶה וְאֵין לוֹ מִי שֶׁיְשַׁמֵּשׁ אוֹתוֹ זוּלָתָהּ, מֻתֶּרֶת לְשַׁמְּשׁוֹ שִׁמּוּשׁ שֶׁאֵין בּוֹ נְגִיעָה, רַק עַל יְדֵי דָבָר אַחֵר, אֲפִלּוּ לַהֲקִימוֹ וּלְהַשְׁכִיבוֹ וּלְתָמְכוֹ, רַק שֶׁתִּזָהֵר בְּיוֹתֵר מֵהַרְחָצַת פָּנָיו יָדָיו וְרַגְלָיו וְהַצַּעַת הַמִּטָּה בְּפָנָיו. וְאִם הָאִשָּׁה חוֹלָה, אָסוּר לְבַעְלָהּ לְשַׁמְּשָׁהּ, אֲפִלּוּ בְּלֹא נְגִיעָה, אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן בִּשְׁעַת דְּחָק גָּדוֹל, שֶׁאִי אֶפְשָׁר לִמְצֹא מִי שֶׁיְשַׁמְּשֶׁנָּה. וְאִם הַבַּעַל הוּא רוֹפֵא וְאֵין שָׁם רוֹפֵא אַחֵר מֻמְחֶה כָּמוֹהוּ, מֻתָּר לוֹ לְמַשֵּׁשׁ לָהּ אֶת הַדֹּפֶק, כֵּיוָן שֶׁאֵינוֹ עוֹשֶׂה דֶּרֶךְ תַּאֲוָה וְחִבָּה.

15

All the foregoing precautionary measures must also be observed during the "white days," that is, the seven days after the flow has ceased, and even thereafter if she delays her immersion. They are forbidden in all that was mentioned previously, until after she immerses herself.

טו

בְּכָל הַהַרְחָקוֹת הַנִּזְכָּרוֹת, צְרִיכִין לִזָּהֵר גַּם בִּימֵי לִבּוּנָהּ, דְּהַיְנוּ בִּימֵי סְפִירַת שִׁבְעָה נְקִיִים, וְגַם אַחַר כָךְ, אִם נִתְאַחֲרָה מִלִּטְבֹּל בִּזְמַנָּהּ, אֲסוּרִים בְּכָל הַנִּזְכָּר עַד לְאַחַר שֶׁתִּטְבֹּל.

16

During the time a woman is a niddah, during her menstruation period before the white days, it is customary27 for her not to enter a synagogue and not to pray. But on the Days of Awe, that is from the first day of Selichot when multitudes assemble at the synagogue, and she will be greatly distressed if she does not go, she is permitted to go and pray. Similarly at the marriage of her son, or daughter, or she has given birth and it is time for her to go to the synagogue, or for similar things, she is permitted to do so.

טז

אִשָּׁה נִדָּה, בִּימֵי רְאִיָתָהּ קֹדֶם יְמֵי לִבּוּנָהּ, נוֹהֲגִין שֶׁאֵינָהּ נִכְנֶסֶת לְבֵית הַכְּנֶסֶת וְאֵינָהּ מִתְפַּלֶּלֶת. אַךְ בַּיָמִים הַנּוֹרָאִים, דְּהַיְנוּ מִיּוֹם רִאשׁוֹן דִּסְלִיחוֹת וּלְהַלָּן שֶׁרַבִּים מִתְאַסְּפִים בְּבֵית הַכְּנֶסֶת, וְיִהְיֶה לָּהּ עִצָּבוֹן גָּדוֹל אִם לֹא תֵלֵךְ, מֻתֶּרֶת לָלֶכֶת וּלְהִתְפַּלֵל. וְכֵן כְּשֶׁהִיא מַשִׂיאָה אֶת בְּנָהּ אוֹ אֶת בִּתָּה, אוֹ כְּשֶׁהִיא יוֹלֶדֶת שֶהִגִּיעַ זְמַנָּה לָלֶכֶת לְבֵית הַכְּנֶסֶת, וְכַיוֹצֵא בָזֶה, מֻתֶּרֶת.