1

Everyone who recites grace or the single blessing that includes the three [blessings of grace] should recite these blessings in the place where he ate. If he ate while walking, he should sit down where he concluded eating and recite the blessings. If he ate while standing, he should sit down in his place and recite grace.

If a person forgets to recite grace and remembers before his food becomes digested, he may recite grace in the place where he remembers. If he intentionally [did not recite grace in the place where he ate], he should return to his place and recite grace. Should he recite grace in the place where he remembers, he fulfills his obligation.

Similarly, a person who recites grace while standing or while walking fulfills his obligation. Nevertheless, at the outset, a person should not recite grace or the single blessing which includes the three [blessings of grace] except when he is seated in the place where he ate.

א

כל המברך ברכת המזון או ברכה אחת מעין שלש צריך לברך אותה במקום שאכל אכל כשהוא מהלך יושב במקום שפסק ויברך אכל כשהוא עומד יושב במקומו ויברך שכח לברך ברכת המזון ונזכר קודם שיתעכל המזון שבמעיו מברך במקום שנזכר ואם היה מזיד חוזר למקומו ומברך ואם בירך במקום שנזכר יצא ידי חובתו וכן אם בירך כשהוא עומד או כשהוא מהלך יצא ידי חובתו ולכתחלה לא יברך ברכת המזון ולא ברכה שמעין שלש אלא כשהוא יושב ובמקום שאכל:

2

A person who is in doubt whether he recited the blessing hamotzi or not should not repeat the blessing, because it is not required by the Torah.

A person who forgets to recite hamotzi should recite the blessing if he remembers before he completes his meal. If he remembers after he completed his meal, he should not recite the blessing.

ב

מי שנסתפק לו אם בירך המוציא או לא בירך המוציא אינו חוזר ומברך מפני שאינו מן התורה שכח לברך המוציא אם נזכר עד שלא גמר סעודתו חוזר ומברך ואם נזכר לאחר שגמר אינו חוזר ומברך:

3

[The following rules apply when] a person was eating in one house, interrupted his meal, and went to another house, or when a friend called to him and he went out the doorway of his house to speak to him: When he returns, he is required to recite grace after what he originally ate, and to recite hamotzi again because he changed his place. [Only] after this, may he complete his meal.

ג

היה אוכל בבית זה ופסק סעודתו והלך לבית אחר או שהיה אוכל וקראהו חבירו לדבר עמו ויצא לו לפתח ביתו וחזר הואיל ושינה מקומו צריך לברך למפרע על מה שאכל וחוזר ומברך בתחלה המוציא ואחר כך יגמור סעודתו:

4

[The following rules apply when] friends joined to eat a meal together and [interrupted their meal to] go out to greet a groom or a bride: If they left an old man or a sick person [in the place where they ate], they may return to their place and complete their meal without having to recite a second blessing.

If they did not leave an old man or a sick person [in the place where they ate], when they depart they are required to recite a blessing after eating. When they return, they must recite a blessing before [beginning to eat again].

ד

חברים שהיו יושבים לאכול ויצאו לקראת חתן או לקראת כלה אם הניחו שם זקן או חולה חוזרין למקומן וגומרין סעודתן ואינן צריכין לברך שנייה ואם לא הניחו שם אדם כשהן יוצאין צריכין ברכה למפרע וכשהן חוזרין צריכין ברכה לכתחלה:

5

Similar laws apply when people drink together as a group or eat fruits together. Whenever one changes one's place, it is considered as if he interrupted his eating. Therefore, he must recite a blessing after what he ate and must recite a second blessing before partaking of any other foods.

A person who changes his place from one corner to another in the same room need not recite another blessing. In contrast, a person who ate on the east side of a fig tree and goes to eat on the west side of the fig tree must recite another blessing.

ה

וכן אם היו מסובין בשתיה או לאכול פירות שכל המשנה מקומו הרי פסק אכילתו ולפיכך מברך למפרע על מה שאכל וחוזר ומברך שנייה לכתחלה על מה שהוא צריך לאכול והמשנה מקומו מפינה לפינה בבית אחד אינו צריך לחזור ולברך אכל במזרחה של תאנה ובא לאכול במערבה צריך לחזור ולברך:

6

When a person recites a blessing on bread, it also includes the appetizers eaten together with bread - e.g., cooked food or fruit. Reciting a blessing on these foods, however, does not include bread.

Reciting a blessing on cooked grains includes cooked food. Reciting a blessing on cooked food, however, does not include cooked grains.

ו

בירך על הפת פטר את הפרפרת שאוכלין בהן הפת ממיני התבשיל ופירות וכיוצא בהן אבל אם בירך על הפרפרת לא פטר את הפת בירך על מעשה קדירה פטר את התבשיל בירך על התבשיל לא פטר את מעשה קדירה:

When a person recites a blessing on bread, it also includes - This halachah has raised questions among the commentaries. TheKessef Mishneh, the Lechem Mishneh, and others interpret this halachah as referring to the blessings before eating. Thus, with regard to bread, it is to a large part analogous to Halachah 11.

In this context, the Kessef Mishneh asks why the Rambam did not mention these laws in the context of Chapter 3, Halachot 5-7, which state the rule that the blessing on primary foods includes secondary foods. The Kessef Mishneh answers that those halachot describe a situation where the person has no desire to eat the secondary food in its own right and eats it only because of the primary food. In this halachah, the Rambam is speaking about an instance in which one desires to eat the other foods; nevertheless, they are included in the blessing recited over bread because bread includes all other foods.

The Rishon LeTzion offers a different interpretation, which appears more appropriate to the context in which the laws are discussed. Here, the Rambam is speaking only about the blessing recited after eating.

the appetizers - In his Commentary on the Mishnah,Berachot 6:5 (the source for this halachah), the Rambam defines the term פרפרת as לפתן, which is generally translated as "relish." Note the Tur and the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 176:1), which offer a different interpretation of the term פרפרת.

eaten together with bread - This does not refer only to instances when these foods are eaten while placed on bread, but also to times when they are eaten at a meal at which bread is served.

e.g., cooked food or fruit. - Because the main element of a meal is considered to be bread, reciting a blessing upon it - either before or after partaking of it - includes the other foods that are eaten together with it.

Reciting a blessing on these foods, however, does not include bread. - The commentaries question why this clause is necessary according to the Rambam's definition of פרפרת. It is obvious that bread would not be considered secondary to any other foods.

Reciting a blessing on cooked grains - Our translation is based on the Rambam's Commentary on the Mishnah (loc. cit.) and on Chapter 3, Halachah 4.

includes cooked food. - Since the cooked grains are considered "sustaining food" and have been granted a special blessing which includes (in synopsis) all the blessings of grace, reciting a blessing over them includes other cooked dishes eaten with them.

The Rishon LeTzion emphasizes that this applies to cooked foods that are eaten together with the grains. Otherwise, it would be difficult to understand how the blessing for the grains could cover foods that require other blessings. Note also the Kessef Mishneh, which offers an alternate explanation.

Reciting a blessing on cooked food, however, does not include cooked grains. - Since these cooked foods are not as satisfying as grains, the blessing recited over them cannot include grains.

Several commentaries have raised the question that from Berachot 42b, it appears that the Rambam's decision follows the School of Shammai and not the School of Hillel. The clearest resolution of the difficulty is offered by the Rishon LeTzion, who explains that the Rambam's decision is based on the Jerusalem Talmud (Berachot 6:5). When the passage from the Babylonian Talmud is studied in the light of the passage from the Jerusalem Talmud, the Rambam's ruling is no longer difficult.

This relates to a concept frequently discussed by students of the Rambam: Does the Rambam accept the principle that when there is a difference of opinion between the Babylonian Talmud and the Jerusalem Talmud, the Halachah follows the Babylonian Talmud, or not?

7

A person who decides not to continue eating or drinking, and afterwards changes his mind and [desires to] eat or drink, must recite another blessing although he has not changed his place. If he did not decide [to cease] eating or drinking and had in mind to continue - even if he made an interruption for the entire day - he is not required to recite a second blessing.

ז

גמר בלבו מלאכול או מלשתות ואח"כ נמלך לאכול או לשתות אף ע"פ שלא שינה מקומו חוזר ומברך ואם לא גמר בלבו אלא דעתו לחזור לאכול ולשתות אפילו פסק כל היום כולו אינו צריך לברך שנית:

A person who decides not to continue eating or drinking - The Kessef Mishneh cites Pesachim 103b, which states that once a person diverts his attention from drinking wine, he must recite another blessing when he begins drinking again.

The Ra'avad notes that the passage from Pesachim (loc. cit.) mentions only drinking and does not discuss eating, and on that basis protests against the Rambam's equation of the two. From Berachot 42a, however, it appears that similar principles apply with regard to eating.

and afterwards changes his mind and [desires to] eat or drink, must recite another blessing - before partaking of the food or drink. He is not, however, required to recite a blessing after the first food or drink. Rather, he is required to recite only a single blessing after he completes eating.

although he has not changed his place. - As mentioned in Halachot 3-5, a person who changes his place while eating must recite both a blessing after the food he has eaten previously and a blessing over the food he plans to eat in his new place.

Many authorities do not accept the Rambam's decision with regard to a meal that includes bread. When a person sits down to such a meal, he is considered to have fixed his attention on eating. People frequently become drawn into eating more than they originally intended at such meals. Thus, a person's decision not to continue eating is not considered final, since it is quite possible that he will change his mind and decide to eat again. (See Shulchan Aruch HaRav 179:1).

Based on these principles, the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 179:1) rules that, although once a person has decided to cease eating or drinking a new blessing is generally required, when partaking of a meal it is not sufficient to make a mental decision, and a person must wash before grace to be considered to have ceased eating.

If he - remained in the place in which he ate originally, and

did not decide [to cease] eating or drinking and had in mind to continue - eating at a later time

even if he made an interruption for the entire day - The Rambam's terminology appears to be a stylistic exaggeration. If a person waits long enough for the food he has eaten to digest, it would appear that he is required to recite another blessing before beginning to eat again (Kin’at Eliyahu).

he is not required to recite a second blessing - before partaking of more food or drink.

8

When people who are sitting together and drinking say "Let us recite grace," or "Let us recite kiddush," they are forbidden to continue drinking until they recite grace or kiddush. Should they desire to drink more - although they are not permitted to do so - before reciting grace or kiddush, they are required to recite the blessing borey pri hagafen before drinking. In contrast, should they say, "Let us recite havdalah," they are not required to recite a blessing [should they continue drinking].

ח

היו שותין ואמרו בואו ונברך ברכת המזון או בואו ונקדש קידוש היום נאסר עליהם לשתות עד שיברכו או יקדשו ואם רצו לחזור ולשתות קודם שיברכו או יקדשו אף ע"פ שאינם רשאים צריכים לחזור ולברך תחלה בורא פרי הגפן ואחר כך ישתו אבל אם אמרו בואו ונבדיל אין צריכין לחזור ולברך:

When people who are sitting together - after having completed a meal

and drinking say - This refers to a consensus agreed to by all the participants, and not a mere suggestion raised by a single individual.

"Let us recite grace," or "Let us recite kiddush," - i.e., they were eating on Friday afternoon or the afternoon before a festival. From sunset onward, it is forbidden to continue eating until one recites kiddush. It is, however, possible to recite kiddush early (see Hilchot Shabbat 29:11). Once the people agree to recite kiddush, they may no longer continue their meal (Kessef Mishneh).

they are - considered to have diverted their attention from drinking, as mentioned in the previous halachah. Hence, they are

forbidden to continue drinking until they recite grace or kiddush. - The Turei Zahav 179:2 states that, according to the authorities who differ with the Rambam on the previous halachah, if one's desire to drink stems from having eaten, one may continue to drink at this point.

Should they desire to drink more - although they are not permitted to do so - i.e., they are obligated to recite grace orkiddush before drinking. Should they desire to ignore that obligation and drink immediately,

before reciting grace or kiddush, they are required to recite the blessing borey pri hagafen before drinking - because, as mentioned in the previous halachah, the blessing they recited originally does not cover any drink consumed after they concluded drinking.

In contrast, should they say, "Let us recite havdalah," they are not required to recite a blessing [should they continue drinking]. - The difference between kiddush and havdalah is that kiddush initiates the Sabbath. Accordingly, the respect due to the Sabbath adds importance to the diversion of our attention from drinking implied by the statement, "Let us recite kiddush." In contrast, havdalah marks the beginning of the week, which we are not required to treat with such distinction. Thus, as Hilchot Shabbat 29:12 states, a person is not required to interrupt his meal at nightfall on Saturday, but may continue and recite havdalah when he concludes eating (Radbaz).

24. Berachot 59b emphasizes that this blessing is recited only when one drinks in a company. When one drinks alone, this blessing should not be recited, because it praises God for "being good" - i.e., to me - and "doing good" - for others (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim 175:4).
25. Tosafot, Berachot (loc. cit.) notes that the Sages instituted this blessing only for different types of wine and not for different types of bread or meat, since wine has two positive qualities: It satisfies a person's appetite and lifts his spirits.
26. Rashi, Berachot (loc. cit.), states that this blessing should be recited only when the second type of wine is better than the first. If the first type of wine is better, no blessing should be recited. The commentaries maintain that the Rambam differs and maintains that the blessing should be recited whenever one changes types of wine. The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 175:2-3) rules that if one knows that the second type of wine is of a lesser quality than the first, the blessing should not be recited.

9

When a company who gathered together to drink wine were served another type of wine - e.g., they were drinking red wine and black wine was brought, or they were drinking fresh wine and aged wine was brought - they need not recite a second blessing over wine. They should, however, recite the following blessing: "Blessed are You, God, our Lord, King of the universe, who is good and does good."

ט

היו מסובין לשתות יין ובא להן מין יין אחר כגון שהיו שותין אדום והביאו שחור או ישן והביאו חדש אינן צריכין לברך ברכת היין פעם שנייה אבל מברכין ברוך אתה יי' אלהינו מלך העולם הטוב והמטיב:

10

A person should not recite a blessing over any food or drink until it is brought before him. If he recited a blessing, and then the food was brought before him, he must recite a second blessing.

When a person took food in his hand and recited a blessing, but [before he could eat it] it fell from his hand and was burned or washed away by a river, he should take other food and recite another blessing. [This applies] even when the food is of the same species. He should also say, "Blessed be the Name of Him whose glorious kingdom is forever and ever" for the first blessing, so that he will not be considered to have recited a blessing in vain.

A person may stand over a stream of water, recite a blessing, and drink. Although the water that was before him at the time he recited the blessing is not the water he drinks, this was his original intention.

י

אין מברכין על אוכל מן כל האוכלין ולא על משקה מן כל המשקין עד שיבא לפניו ואם בירך ואח"כ הביאו לפניו צריך לחזור ולברך נטל אוכל ובירך עליו ונפל מידו ונשרף או שטפו נהר נוטל אחר וחוזר ומברך עליו אע"פ שהוא מאותו המין וצריך לומר ברוך שם כבוד מלכותו לעולם ועד על ברכה ראשונה כדי שלא להוציא שם שמים לבטלה עומד אדם על אמת המים ומברך ושותה אף על פי שהמים שהיו לפניו בשעת הברכה אינם המים ששתה מפני שלכך נתכוון תחלה:

A person should not recite a blessing over any food or drink until it is brought before him. - The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 206:4) states that a person should hold the food in his right hand before reciting the blessing for it.

If he - ignored the above directive and

recited a blessing, and then the food was brought before him - The blessing is considered to be in vain, and before partaking of the food,

he must recite a second blessing. - There are some authorities who maintain that even though the food was not before one at the time the blessing was recited, if one was absolutely sure that it would be brought before him immediately, he can rely on that blessing (Mishneh Berurah 206:19).

When a person took food in his hand and recited a blessing, but [before he could eat it] it fell from his hand and was burned or washed away by a river - or in any other way became inedible

he should take other food and recite another blessing - i.e., the first blessing is no longer in effect ,and a second blessing must be recited before eating.

[This applies] even when the food is of the same species. - The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 206:6) adds, "and even if the other fruit was before him when he recited the blessing originally." The Ramah (based on the Hagahot Maimoniot) differs, and maintains that if he originally intended to partake of the other fruit as well, it is included in the first blessing and he should eat it without hesitation so that the blessing will not have to be repeated.

He should also say, "Blessed be the Name of Him whose glorious kingdom is forever and ever" for the first blessing, so that he will not be considered to have recited a blessing in vain. - See Chapter 1, Halachah 15, which discusses the seriousness of reciting a blessing in vain. See also Hilchot Sh'vuot 12:9-11, where the Rambam discusses related concepts, concluding:

The Torah has adjured us "to fear [His] glorious and awesome name." Included in this fear is that it should not be mentioned in vain. If, because of a slip of the tongue, one mentioned God's name in vain, one should immediately praise and laud... it.

A person may stand over a stream of water, recite a blessing, and drink. - The Jerusalem Talmud (Berachot 6:1) mentions this instance as a contrast to the previous law.

Although the water that was before him at the time he recited the blessing is not the water he drinks, this was his original intention. - He knew that the water would continue to flow. When he recited the blessing on the water, his intent was on water from the stream and not on the particular water before him at the time he recited the blessing.

11

Foods that are eaten within the meal, because of the meal, do not require a blessing beforehand or afterward. Rather, the blessing hamotzi that is recited in the beginning and the grace recited afterward include everything, because everything is secondary to the meal.

Foods that are eaten within the meal, but do not come because of the meal, require a blessing before partaking of them, but do not require a blessing afterward.

Foods that are eaten after the meal, whether because of the meal or independent of the meal, require a blessing beforehand and afterward.

יא

דברים הבאים בתוך הסעודה והן מחמת הסעודה אינן צריכין ברכה לפניהם ולא לאחריהם אלא ברכת המוציא שבתחלה וברכת המזון שבסוף פוטרת הכל שהכל טפלה לסעודה ודברים שאינן מחמת הסעודה שבאו בתוך הסעודה טעונין ברכה לפניהם ולא לאחריהם ודברים הבאים לאחר הסעודה בין מחמת הסעודה בין שלא מחמת הסעודה טעונין ברכה לפניהן ולאחריהם:

Foods that are eaten within the meal, because of the meal. - The Rambam's statements are quoted, with slight changes, from Berachot 41b. In his commentary on this passage, Rashi defines this first category of foods as relishes eaten with bread. He explains that other foods - e.g., cereals or vegetables - although they are eaten as part of a meal, require an independent blessing.

Tosafot differs, and maintains that any food that is eaten as part of a meal - e.g., the foods mentioned by Rashi, meat or fish - is included in this category. Even if they are not eaten with bread, merely at the same meal, they

do not require a blessing beforehand or afterward. - The commentaries question whether the Rambam's position follows that of Rashi or Tosafot. The following sentence (which is the Rambam's addition to Berachot, loc. cit.) sheds light on the question.

Rather, the blessing hamotzi that is recited in the beginning and the grace recited afterward include everything, because everything is secondary to the meal. - This sentence explains the rationale for this ruling. These foods are not eaten casually during the day, but rather are eaten only as part of a meal, with the intent of satiating one's appetite. Accordingly, they are considered as secondary to bread, which is the primary element of the meal (Shulchan Aruch HaRav 177:1). Accordingly, we follow the ruling mentioned in Chapter 3, Halachah 5, that the blessing on primary foods includes secondary foods.

This explanation appears to indicate that the Rambam followsTosafot's interpretation. The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 171:1) also rules accordingly. The Magen Avraham 177:1, however, postulates that it is logical to assume that this ruling applies only when bread is eaten throughout the meal. If only a small amount of bread is eaten at the beginning of a meal, and no bread is eaten while the main course is being eaten, it is questionable whether the blessing over the bread covers these foods.

Foods that are eaten within the meal, but do not come because of the meal - This refers to fruits and the like, which are not satisfying food and are eaten throughout the day, frequently outside the context of a meal, but at times within the context of a meal. This indicates that they are not necessarily connected with the meal and, therefore, are not included in the blessing hamotzi. Accordingly, they

require a blessing before partaking of them, but do not require a blessing afterward. - Since they are eaten within the meal, they also satisfy a person's appetite. Accordingly, they are included in the blessing that is required by the commandment, "When you have eaten and are satiated, you shall bless...."

The Shulchan Aruch (loc. cit.:1,3, based on Rabbenu Asher's commentary on Berachot, loc. cit.) mentions two instances when fruit is included in the blessing hamotzi:

a) When the fruits are eaten on bread itself,
b) When one eats a meal of fruit - i.e., the fruit is served to satiate one's appetite.

Foods that are eaten after the meal, whether because of the meal - i.e., foods served to satiate one's appetite

or independent of the meal -fruits, desserts, or drinks

require a blessing beforehand and afterward. - Tosafot (Berachot, loc. cit.) states that this law does not apply at present. Our eating habits have changed, and bread is constantly before us during a meal, and it is customary to partake of it at all times.

The Shulchan Aruch (loc. cit.:2) accepts Tosafot's position. The Magen Avraham 177:7 adds that even at large feasts, when it is customary to eat desert without eating bread, a new blessing is not required because, in Talmudic times, bread and the main course were served on a small table, which was then removed, and dessert was served on a new table. Thus, the dessert appeared as a separate meal and required separate blessings. In contrast, at present, desert is served on the same table on which the bread was served. Hence, it is still considered a continuation of the same meal and does not require a separate blessing.

12

On Sabbaths, on festivals, at the meal after one lets blood or leaves the bath, and the like, when a person makes wine a primary element of his meal, if he recites a blessing on wine before eating his meal, that blessing includes the wine that he drinks after the meal, before he recites grace. In contrast, on other days, a person should recite another blessing on wine that is drunk after the meal.

If wine is served to a company in the midst of the meal, each person should recite a blessing by himself, because one's mouth may not be empty to recite Amen. [This blessing] does not include the wine that is drunk after the meal.

יב

בשבתות ובימים טובים ובסעודת הקזת הדם ובשעה שיצא מן המרחץ וכיוצא בהן שאדם קובע סעודתו על היין אם בירך על היין שלפני המזון פטר את היין ששתה לאחר המזון קודם שיברך ברכת המזון אבל בשאר הימים צריך לחזור ולברך בתחלה על היין של אחר המזון בא להן יין בתוך המזון כל אחד ואחד מברך לעצמו שאין בית הבליעה פנוי שיענו אמן ואינו פוטר את היין שלאחר המזון: