1

When a person suffers the loss [the death] of one for whom he is obligated to mourn, he must tear his garments because of it. He must tear his garments while standing, as it is said, "And the king arose and tore his garments."1 If he tore his garments while sitting, he has not fulfilled his obligation, and he must again tear his garments while standing. Initially he should tear them before the deceased is covered in the grave, when his sorrow is still intense.

א

מִי שֶׁמֵת לוֹ מֵת שֶׁהוּא חַיָב לְהִתְאַבֵּל עָלָיו (וְעַיֵּן לְקַמָּן סִימָן רג), חַיָּב לִקְרֹעַ עָלָיו. וְחַיָב לִקְרֹעַ מְעֻמָּד, שֶׁנֶאֱמַר, וַיָקָם הַמֶּלֶךְ וַיִקְרַע אֶת בְּגָדָיו. וְאִם קָרַע מְיֻשָּׁב, לֹא יָצָא, וְצָרִיךְ לַחֲזוֹר וְלִקְרֹעַ מְעֻמָד. לְכַתְּחִלָּה צָרִיךְ לִקְרֹעַ קֹדֶם שֶׁיִסָּתְמוּ פְּנֵי הַמֵּת בַּקֶּבֶר בְּעוֹד חִמּוּם צַעְרוֹ.

2

For the dead for whom one must observe laws of mourning, the tear in the garment must be made near the front of the neck. It must be made from the top, downward, and not in the width of the garment. The tear must be made in the very cloth of the garment,2 and not at the seam.

ב

עַל הַמֵּתִים שֶׁהוּא מִתְאַבֵּל עֲלֵיהֶם, צָרִיךְ לִקְרֹעַ בְּבֵית הַצַוָּאר לְפָנָיו. וְצָרִיךְ לִקְרֹעַ מִן הַשָׂפָה וּלְמַטָּה, וְלֹא לְרֹחַב הַבֶּגֶד. וְצָרִיךְ לִקְרֹעַ בְּמָקוֹם שֶׁהַבֶּגֶד שָׁלֵם מִתְּחִלָּתוֹ, וְלֹא בִּמְקוֹם הַתֶּפֶר.

3

There are differences between tearing garments upon the death of a father or mother, and the tearing of garments upon the death of other relatives. For all deceased relatives, tearing a tefach3 of the outer garment is sufficient, and tearing it more than that is a transgression of, "You shall not destroy."4 For a father or a mother, all the garments must be torn that are over against his heart, (see above Chapter 10:3 that the area of the heart is that which is opposite the bicep of the arm) except the undershirt which is not torn. Similarly, a garment that is worn only on occasions, over other garments, and at times one goes out without it, such as an overcoat, such a garment also does not need to be torn. If the mourner did not tear all the garments that he was required to tear, he has not fulfilled his obligation. Because of modesty, a woman should first tear her inner-garment in private, and turn the tear to the side, and then tear her outer garment, so as not to expose herself. (Even though she is covered by her undershirt, nevertheless, it would be immodest to do otherwise.)

ג

חִלּוּקִים יֵשׁ בֵּין הַקְּרִיעָה שֶׁעַל אָבִיו וְאִמוֹ לַקְּרִיעָה שֶׁעַל שְׁאָר קְרוֹבִים. עַל כָּל הַמֵּתִים, קוֹרֵעַ טֶפַח בַּבֶּגֶד הָעֶלְיוֹן וְדַיּוֹ, וְאֵין לִקְרֹעַ יוֹתֵר, מִשׁוּם בַּל תַּשְׁחִית. וְעַל אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ, צָרִיךְ לִקְרֹעַ כָּל הַבְּגָדִים עַד כְּנֶגֶד לִבּוֹ, (וְעַיֵּן לְעֵיל סִימָן י סָעִיף ג, שֶׁהַלֵב הוּא כְּנֶגֶד הַבָּשָׂר הַגָּבוֹהַּ שֶׁעַל הַזְרוֹעַ), חוּץ מִן הַכֻּתֹּנֶת שֶׁאֵינוֹ קוֹרֵעַ. וְכֵן הַבֶּגֶד שֶׁהוּא לוֹבֵשׁ רַק לְעִתִּים לְמַעְלָה מִכָּל בְּגָדָיו, וְלִפְעָמִים הוּא יוֹצֵא לַשּׁוּק גַם בִּלְעָדָיו, (כְּגוֹן מאנְטִיל מְעִיל), בֶּגֶד זֶה גַם כֵּן אֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ לִקְרֹעַ, וְאִם לֹא קָרַע כָּל בְּגָדָיו שֶׁהוּא צָרִיךְ לִקְרֹעַ לֹא יָצָא. וְהָאִשָׁה, מִשׁוּם צְנִיעוּת תִּקְרַע תְּחִלָה אֶת הַבֶּגֶד הַתַּחְתּוֹן לְפָנֶיהָ, וְתַחֲזִיר אֶת הַקֶּרַע לִצְדָדִין, וְאַחַר כָּךְ תִּקְרַע אֶת הַבֶּגֶד הָעֶלְיוֹן, שֶׁלֹא יִתְגַלֶּה לִבָּה, (וְאַף שֶׁהִיא לְבוּשָׁה חָלוּק, מִכָּל מָקוֹם אִיכָּא מִשׁוּם פְּרִיצוּת)

4

Upon the death of other relatives, it is the custom to tear the right side of the garments, and upon the death of a father or a mother, [it is the custom] to tear the left side of the garments, because the mourner must expose his heart, which is on the left side of his body. [However] if it was done otherwise, it does not invalidate the fulfillment of his duty.

ד

נוֹהֲגִין שֶׁעַל שְׁאָר קְרוֹבִים, קוֹרְעִין בְּצַד יָמִין, וְעַל אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ בְּצַד שְׂמֹאל, לְפִי שֶׁצָרִיךְ לְגַלוֹת אֶת לִבּוֹ שֶׁהוּא בְצַד שְׂמֹאל. וּבְדִיעֲבַד, אֵין זֶה מְעַכֵּב.

5

When tearing garments for all other deceased, it may be done by hand or with an instrument, but for a father or mother, it must be done by hand. It is customary for a member of the Burial Society to make a slight cut [in the garment] with a knife, and then the mourner takes hold of the place of the cut, and tears the garment. He must take care to tear the garment lengthwise and not in the width.

ה

עַל כָּל הַמֵּתִים, רָצָה קוֹרֵעַ בַּיָד, רָצָה קוֹרֵעַ בַּכֶּלִי. עַל אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ, דַּוְקָא בַּיָד. וְהַמִּנְהָג שֶׁאֶחָד מֵאַנְשֵׁי חֶבְרָא קַדִּישָא חוֹתֵךְ קְצָת בַּסַּכִּין, וְהָאָבֵל תּוֹפֵס בִּמְקוֹם הַחַתָךְ וְקוֹרֵעַ. וְצָרִיךְ לְהַשְׁגִּיחַ, שֶׁיִקְרַע בְּאֹרֶךְ הַבֶּגֶד וְלֹא בְרָחְבּוֹ.

6

For all other relatives, if the mourner changes his garments during the shivah period,5 he need not tear the garments, that he is now going to wear; but for his father or mother, if he changes garments during the weekdays of the shivah period, he must tear the garments into which he has changed. However, in honor of Shabbos, he should change garments, and not wear garments that are torn. If he has no other garments in which to change, he should turn the torn part backwards to conceal it. Changing garments for Shabbos in this instance, means putting on other weekday clothes, but he is forbidden to wear his usual Shabbos garments.6

ו

עַל כָּל הַמֵּתִים, אִם מַחֲלִיף בְּגָדָיו בְּתוֹךְ שִׁבְעָה, אֵינוֹ צָרִךְ לִקְרֹעַ בְּאֵלוּ שֶׁהוּא לוֹבֵשׁ עָתָּה. וְעַל אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ, אִם הוּא מַחֲלִיף בְּגָדָיו בִּימֵי הַחֹל שֶׁבְּתוֹךְ שִׁבְעָה, צָרִיךְ לִקְרֹעַ בָּהֶם. אַךְ לִכְבוֹד שַׁבָּת, יַחֲלִיף בְּגָדָיו וְלֹא יִלְבַּשׁ אֶת הַבֶּגֶד הַקָּרוּעַ. וְאִם אֵין לוֹ בְּגָדִים אֲחֵרִים לְהַחֲלִיף, יַחֲזִיר אֶת הַקֶּרַע לַאֲחוֹרָיו. וְהָא דְמַחֲלִיף בַּשַׁבָּת, הַיְנוּ שֶׁלּוֹבֵשׁ בִּגְדֵי חֹל אֲחֵרִים. אֲבָל לִלְבּושׁ בִּגְדֵי שַׁבָּת, אָסוּר. (כְּדִלְקַמָּן סִימָן ריא סָעִיף י).

7

According to halachah, garments that were torn for relatives, may be stitched together loosely after the shivah, and completely sewn after the thirty day period. For his father or mother, the mourner may stitch them together after thirty days, but he may never sew them completely. Even to cut out the torn part of the garment, and replace it by sewing in another piece of cloth, is forbidden. The prevailing custom is that within the thirty day period, even for other relatives, it is forbidden even to stitch them together loosely. Even to join the torn edges together with pins is forbidden within the thirty day period. A woman who is in mourning for her father or mother, may stitch them together immediately for modesty. All torn garments, which are forbidden to be sewn, are forbidden to be sewn even if the garments are sold; and therefore, the seller must inform the buyer. It is forbidden to sell such garments to a non-Jew.

ז

עַל כָּל הַמֵּתִים, (מִצַּד הַדִּין) שׁוֹלֵל (דְּהַיְנוּ שֶׁתּוֹפֵר תְּפִירָה בִּלְתִּי שָׁוָה) לְאַחַר שִׁבְעָה, וּמְאַחֶה (דְּהַיְנוּ שֶׁתּוֹפְרוֹ כָּרָאוּי) לְאַחַר שְׁלֹשִׁים. עַל אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ, שׁוֹלֵל לְאַחַר שְׁלֹשִׁים, וְאֵינוֹ מְאַחֶה לְעוֹלָם. וַאֲפִילוּ אִם בָּא לַחְתֹּךְ סְבִיבוֹת הַקְּרִיעָה וְלָשׂוּם שָׁם חֲתִיכַת בֶּגֶד אַחֵר וּלְתָפְרוֹ, אָסוּר. אֲבָל נוֹהֲגִין, כִּי בְּתוֹךְ שְׁלֹשִׁים, אֲפִילּוּ עַל שְׁאָר מֵתִים, אֲפִילוּ לִשְׁלֹל, אָסוּר. וַאֲפִלּוּ לְחַבֵּר רָאשֵׁי הַקְּרִיעָה עַל יְדֵי מַחַט, אָסוּר. וְאִשָּׁה, אֲפִלּוּ עַל אָבִיהָ וְאִמָּהּ, שׁוֹלֶלֶת לְאַלְתֵּר, מִפְּנֵי הַצְּנִיעוּת. וְכָל הַקְּרָעִים שֶׁאֲסוּרִין לְתָפְרָן, אֲפִלּוּ אִם מָכַר אֶת הַבֶּגֶד לְאַחֵר, אָסוּר הַלּוֹקֵחַ לְתָפְרוֹ. וְלָכֵן צָרִיךְ הַמּוֹכֵר לְהוֹדִיעַ לַלּוֹקֵחַ. וְאָסוּר לְמָכְרוֹ לַגּוֹי.

8

For all relatives who pass away, if one did not hear of their death until after thirty days, he need not tear his garments. [However] for a father or mother, the mourner must always tear the garments that he is wearing at the time he hears of their death.7 Nevertheless, if he changes his garments afterwards, he need not tear them.

ח

עַל כָּל הַמֵּתִים, אִם לֹא שָׁמַע עַד לְאַחַר שְׁלֹשִׁים, אֵינוֹ קוֹרֵעַ. עַל אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ, קוֹרֵעַ לְעוֹלָם בְּגָדָיו שֶׁהֵם עָלָיו בִּשְׁעַת שְׁמִיעָה. אַךְ הַבְּגָדִים שֶׁהוּא מַחֲלִיף אַחַר כָּךְ, אֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ לִקְרֹעַ.

9

The intervention of a Yom Tov, cancels the thirty day mourning period even in regard to tearing the garments. Therefore if Yom Tov intervenes during the thirty days of mourning for other relatives, the mourner may completely sew up the torn garment after the minchah prayer on the eve of Yom Tov. If he is in mourning for a father or mother, he may stitch together the torn garment.

ט

הָרֶגֶל מְבַטֵּל גְּזֵרַת שְׁלֹשִׁים גַּם לְעִנְיַן קְרִיעָה. וְלָכֵן אִם פָּגַע הָרֶגֶל בְּתוֹךְ שְׁלֹשִׁים, בִּשְׁאָר קְרוֹבִים יָכוֹל לִתְפֹּר לְגַמְרֵי בְּעֶרֶב הָרֶגֶל לְאַחַר מִנְחָה. וְעַל אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ, יָכוֹל לִשְׁלוֹל.

10

If a person tore his garments for the loss of a relative, and another relative died during the shiva period,8 he should leave a space of three finger breadths away from the first tear, and tear another tefach;9 or he should extend the originial tear by a tefach. But if the second death occured after the shivah, so long as he is wearing the torn garment, he need only extend the tear a bit and this is sufficient. However if the first death was that of some relative, and the second is that of his father or mother, then even after the [first] shivah, he must leave a space of three fingers breadths from the tear, and make a new tear as prescribed by the halachah, because the death of a father or mother is not considered merely as an additional sorrow. The same law applies when his father died first, and then his mother, or vice versa.

י

קָרַע עַל מֵת, וּבְתוֹךְ שִׁבְעָה מֵת לּוֹ מֵת אַחֵר, מַרְחִיק כְּמוֹ שָׁלֹשׁ אֶצְבָּעוֹת מִן הַקֶּרַע הָרִאשׁוֹן וְקוֹרֵעַ טֶפַח, אוֹ שֶׁמּוֹסִיף עַל הַקֶּרַע הָרִאשׁוֹן טֶפַח. אֲבָל לְאַחַר שִׁבְעָה, כָּל זְמַן שֶׁהַבֶּגֶד הַקָרוּעַ עָלָיו, מוֹסִיף עָלָיו כָּל שֶׁהוּא וְדַיּוֹ. אַךְ אִם הָרִאשׁוֹן הָיָה מִשְּׁאָר הַקְּרוֹבִים, וְהַשֵּׁנִי הוּא אָבִיו אוֹ אִמּוֹ, אֲזַי אֲפִלּוּ לְאַחַר שִׁבְעָה, צָרִיךְ לְהַרְחִיק שָׁלֹשׁ אֶצְבָּעוֹת וְלִקְרֹעַ כְּדִינָא, שֶׁאֵין דִּין אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ בְּתוֹסֶפֶת. וְהוּא הַדִּין בְּמֵת אָבִיו תְּחִלָּה וְאַחַר כָּךְ אִמּוֹ, אוֹ בְּהִפּוּךְ.

11

If a person hears at one time about the death of his father and his mother, or of the death of two other relatives, he should tear his garments one time for both of them. But if he hears of the death of his father or mother together with the death of another relative, he should first tear his garments for his father or mother, and leave a space of three finger breadths, and make a new tear for the other relative.

יא

שָׁמַע בְּפַעַם אַחַת שֶׁמֵּתוּ אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ אוֹ שְׁנֵי קְרוֹבִים אֲחֵרִים, קוֹרֵעַ קֶרַע אֶחָד לִשְׁנֵיהֶם. אֲבָל אָבִיו אוֹ אִמּוֹ עִם אֶחָד מִשְׁאַר הַקְּרוֹבִים, קוֹרֵעַ תְּחִלָּה עַל אָבִיו אוֹ אִמּוֹ, וְאַחַר כָּךְ מַרְחִיק שָׁלֹשׁ אֶצְבָּעוֹת וְקוֹרֵעַ עַל הָאַחֵר.

12

When a sick person has lost a relative, if his mind is clear [and he realizes his loss] but he is unable to tear his garments because of the seriousness of his illness, he is exempt from tearing his garments after [his recovery], unless he recovered within the shiva period, which is still considered a time of intense grief. If, however, he was unable to tear his garments because his mind was not clear, then when he regains his clarity of mind and realizes his loss which is then "his" time of intense grief, he must tear his garments if it is within the thirty days of mourning [for relatives]; but for the death of a parent, there is no time limit.

יב

חוֹלֶה שֶׁמֵּת לוֹ מֵת, אִם דַּעְתּוֹ צְלוּלָה, אֶלָּא שֶׁאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לִקְרֹעַ מֵחֲמַת שֶׁהוּא מְסֻכָּן בְּחָלְיוֹ, פָּטוּר אַחַר כָּךְ מִלִּקְרֹעַ, אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן הוּא עֲדַיִן בְּתוֹךְ שִׁבְעָה, דְּחָשִׁיב שְׁעַת חִמּוּם. אֲבָל אִם לֹא יָכוֹל לִקְרוֹעַ, מֵחֲמַת שֶׁלֹּא הָיְתָה דַּעְתּוֹ צְלוּלָה, אֲזַי כְּשֶׁתָּבוֹא לוֹ דֵעָה צְלוּלָה, הֲוֵי אָז שְׁעַת חִמּוּם שֶׁלּוֹ, וְחַיָב אָז לִקְרוֹעַ אִם הוּא בְּתוֹךְ שְׁלֹשִׁים. וְעַל אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ, לְעוֹלָם.

13

If a child [a minor] lost a relative, even if the child has not yet reached the age of chinuch,10 his garments should be slightly torn for him, to manifest sorrow and mourning. But if he has already reached the age of chinuch, it is a mitzvah for him to tear his garments like an adult.

יג

קָטָן שֶׁמֵּת לוֹ מֵת, אֲפִלּוּ לֹא הִגִיעַ לְחִנּוּךְ, מְקָרְעִין לוֹ קְרִעָה קְצָת, מִשּׁוּם עַגְמַת נֶפֶשׁ לְהַרְבּוֹת הָאֵבֶל. וְאִם הִגִיעַ לְחִנוּךְ, מִצְוָה לִקְרוֹעַ כְּמוֹ גְדוֹלִים.

14

When death occurs on Chol Hamoed, it is the custom in these areas,11 12 to tear the garments only for father or mother, whether it is the day of burial or the day when he heard even delayed news of their death.13 However, if his father or mother died on Yom Tov, since the tearing of the garments had been postponed, he should not tear them on Chol Hamoed, [but wait] until after Yom Tov when the period of mourning begins. But for all other relatives, the garments are not torn on Chol Hamoed, until after the Yom Tov. However, if he heard on Chol Hamoed, current news of their death, which will become delayed news if he waits till after Yom Tov, in such an instance, he should tear his garments on Chol Hamoed.

יד

בְּחֹל הַמּוֹעֵד, נוֹהֲגִים בִּמְדִינוֹת אֵלוּ, שֶׁאֵין קוֹרְעִין כִּי אִם עַל אָבִיו וְאִמוֹ, בֵּין בְּיוֹם הַקְּבוּרָה, בֵּין בְּיוֹם הַשְׁמוּעָה, וַאֲפִלּוּ בִּשְׁמוּעָה רְחוֹקָה. אַךְ אִם מֵתוּ אָבִיו אוֹ אִמּוֹ בְּיוֹם טוֹב, הוֹאִיל וְנִדְחֲתָה הַקְּרִיעָה, לֹא יִקְרַע בְּחֹל הַמּוֹעֵד עַד לְאַחַר הָרֶגֶל כְּשֶׁמַּתְחִיל לְהִתְאַבֵּל. וְעַל שְׁאָר קְרוֹבִים, אֵין קוֹרְעִין בְּחֹל הַמּוֹעֵד עַד לְאַחַר הָרֶגֶל. אַךְ אִם שָׁמַע בְּחֹל הַמּוֹעֵד שְׁמוּעָה קְרוֹבָה, שֶׁלְּאַחַר יוֹם טוֹב תְּהֵא רְחוֹקָה, בְּכִי הַאי גַּוְנָא יִקְרַע בְּחֹל הַמּוֹעֵד. (אִסּוּר שְׂרִיטָה וְקָרְחָה עַל הַמֵּת, כָּתוּב בְּסִימָן קסט).