There are activities that are forbidden on the Sabbath despite the fact that they do not resemble the [forbidden] labors, nor will they lead to [the performance of] the [forbidden] labors.1

Why then are [these activities] forbidden? Because it is written [Isaiah 58:13], "If you restrain your feet, because of the Sabbath, and [refrain] from pursuing your desires on My holy day..." and it is written [ibid.], " And you shall honor it [by refraining] from following your [ordinary] ways, attending to your wants, and speaking about [mundane] matters."

Therefore, it is forbidden for a person to go2 and tend to his [mundane] concerns on the Sabbath, or even to speak about them3 - e.g., to discuss with a partner which merchandise should be sold on the morrow or which should be bought, how this building should be constructed, or which merchandise should be taken to a particular place. Speaking about all matters of this like is included in the prohibition [against] "...speaking about [mundane] matters."

It is speaking that is forbidden. Thinking [about such matters] is permitted.4


יֵשׁ דְּבָרִים שֶׁהֵן אְסוּרִין בְּשַׁבָּת אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵינָם דּוֹמִין לִמְלָאכָה וְאֵינָם מְבִיאִין לִידֵי מְלָאכָה. וּמִפְּנֵי מָה נֶאֶסְרוּ מִשּׁוּם שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ישעיה נח יג) "אִם תָּשִׁיב מִשַּׁבָּת רַגְלֶךָ עֲשׂוֹת חֲפָצֶיךָ בְּיוֹם קָדְשִׁי" וְנֶאֱמַר (ישעיה נח יג) "וְכִבַּדְתּוֹ מֵעֲשׂוֹת דְּרָכֶיךָ מִמְּצוֹא חֶפְצְךָ וְדַבֵּר דָּבָר". לְפִיכָךְ אָסוּר לְאָדָם לְהַלֵּךְ בַּחֲפָצָיו בְּשַׁבָּת וַאֲפִלּוּ לְדַבֵּר בָּהֶן כְּגוֹן שֶׁיְּדַבֵּר עִם שֻׁתָּפוֹ מַה יִּמְכֹּר לְמָחָר אוֹ מַה יִּקְנֶה אוֹ הֵיאַךְ יִבְנֶה בַּיִת זֶה וּבְאֵי זֶה סְחוֹרָה יֵלֵךְ לְמָקוֹם פְּלוֹנִי. כָּל זֶה וְכַיּוֹצֵא בּוֹ אָסוּר שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר וְדַבֵּר דָּבָר דִּבּוּר אָסוּר הִרְהוּר מֻתָּר:


It is forbidden for a person to check his gardens and fields on the Sabbath to see what they require or to see how their fruit is growing, for this involves going to "pursue your desires."5

Similarly, it is forbidden for a person to go to the end of the Sabbath boundary6 on the Sabbath and wait there until nightfall so that he will be closer to performing a task7 he desires to fulfill on Saturday night, for in this manner he is walking on the Sabbath in "pursuit of his desires."


אָסוּר לְאָדָם לִפְקֹד גִּנּוֹתָיו וּשְׂדוֹתָיו בְּשַׁבָּת כְּדֵי לִרְאוֹת מַה הֵן צְרִיכִין אוֹ הֵיאַךְ הֵן פֵּרוֹתֵיהֶן. שֶׁהֲרֵי זֶה מְהַלֵּךְ לַעֲשׂוֹת חֶפְצוֹ. וְכֵן אָסוּר לְאָדָם שֶׁיֵּצֵא בְּשַׁבָּת עַד סוֹף הַתְּחוּם וְיֵשֵׁב שָׁם עַד שֶׁתֶּחְשַׁךְ כְּדֵי שֶׁיִּהְיֶה קָרוֹב לַעֲשׂוֹת חֲפָצָיו בְּמוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת. שֶׁהֲרֵי נִמְצָא הִלּוּכוֹ בְּשַׁבָּת לַעֲשׂוֹת חֲפָצָיו:


When does the above apply? When one goes to the end of the Sabbath boundary to wait until nightfall to perform an activity that is forbidden on the Sabbath itself. It is, however, permitted to [go to the boundary and] wait until nightfall in order to perform a task that is permitted on the Sabbath.

What is implied? We may not go to the boundary and wait until nightfall in order to bring produce that is still attached to the ground or to hire workers. One may, however, go and wait until nightfall in order to guard one's produce, since it is permitted to guard [produce] on the Sabbath.8

Similarly, one may go and wait until nightfall in order to bring an animal or fruit that has already been detached. For one calls to an animal and it will come even if it is outside the [Sabbath] boundary,9 and had there been enclosures, one would have been able to bring the detached produce on the Sabbath.

Similarly, a person may tell a colleague, "I am going10 to this or that city tomorrow,"11 for if there were [a chain of] huts [located between the two places], one would be permitted to walk there on the Sabbath. The same applies in all similar situations.


בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בְּשֶׁהֶחְשִׁיךְ עַל הַתְּחוּם לַעֲשׂוֹת דָּבָר שֶׁאָסוּר בְּשַׁבָּת לַעֲשׂוֹתוֹ. אֲבָל אִם הֶחְשִׁיךְ לַעֲשׂוֹת דָּבָר שֶׁמֻּתָּר לַעֲשׂוֹתוֹ בְּשַׁבָּת הֲרֵי זֶה מֻתָּר. כֵּיצַד. אֵין מַחְשִׁיכִין עַל הַתְּחוּם לְהָבִיא פֵּרוֹת מְחֻבָּרִין אוֹ לִשְׂכֹּר פּוֹעֲלִין. אֲבָל מַחְשִׁיךְ הוּא לִשְׁמֹר פֵּרוֹת שֶׁהֲרֵי מֻתָּר לִשְׁמֹר בְּשַׁבָּת. וּמַחְשִׁיךְ לְהָבִיא בְּהֵמָה אוֹ פֵּרוֹת תְּלוּשִׁין. שֶׁהַבְּהֵמָה קוֹרֵא לָהּ וְהִיא בָּאָה אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהִיא חוּץ לַתְּחוּם. וּפֵרוֹת תְּלוּשִׁין אִלּוּ הָיוּ שָׁם מְחִצּוֹת הָיָה מֻתָּר לַהֲבִיאָן בְּשַׁבָּת. וְכֵן אוֹמֵר אָדָם לַחֲבֵרוֹ לִכְרַךְ פְּלוֹנִי אֲנִי הוֹלֵךְ לְמָחָר שֶׁאִם הָיוּ שָׁם בּוּרְגָנִים הָיָה הוֹלֵךְ לְשָׁם בְּשַׁבָּת. וְכֵן כָּל כַּיּוֹצֵא בָּזֶה:


It is permitted for a person to tell a worker whom he sees [on the Sabbath], "Stand near me in the evening."12 One may not, however, tell him, "Be prepared for me in the evening," since by doing so," the person is attending to his wants on the Sabbath.

It is forbidden to run and jump on the Sabbath, as [Isaiah, loc. cit.] states, "[Refraining] from following your [ordinary] ways" - i.e., the manner in which you walk on the Sabbath should not resemble the manner in which you walk during the week. A person may, however, descend to a cistern, pit, or cave, even if they are 100 cubits deep, climb down to drink and then climb up.

It is forbidden to speak extensively about idle matters, as it is written [ibid.], "...speaking about [mundane] matters" - i.e., the manner in which you speak on the Sabbath should not resemble the manner in which you speak during the week.13


מֻתָּר לְאָדָם לוֹמַר לְפוֹעֵל הַנִּרְאֶה שֶׁתַּעֲמֹד עִמִּי לָעֶרֶב. אֲבָל לֹא יֹאמַר לוֹ הֱיֵה נָכוֹן לִי לָעֶרֶב שֶׁנִּמְצָא עוֹשֶׂה חֶפְצוֹ בְּשַׁבָּת. וְאָסוּר לָרוּץ וּלְדַלֵּג בְּשַׁבָּת שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ישעיה נח יג) "מֵעֲשׂוֹת דְּרָכֶיךָ" שֶׁלֹּא יְהֵא הִלּוּכְךָ שֶׁל שַׁבָּת כְּהִלּוּכְךָ שֶׁל חֹל. וְיוֹרֵד אָדָם לְבוֹר וְשִׁיחַ וּמְעָרָה אֲפִלּוּ הֵן מֵאָה אַמָּה וּמְטַפֵּס וְיוֹרֵד וְשׁוֹתֶה וּמְטַפֵּס וְעוֹלֶה. וְאָסוּר לְהַרְבּוֹת בְּשִׂיחָה בְּטֵלָה שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ישעיה נח יג) "וְדַבֵּר דָּבָר" שֶׁלֹּא יְהֵא דִּבּוּרְךָ שֶׁל שַׁבָּת כְּדִבּוּרְךָ שֶׁל חל:


It is permitted to run on the Sabbath for matters involved with a mitzvah14 - e.g., to run to the synagogue or the house of study.

We are permitted to calculate accounts associated with a mitzvah,15 to make measurements concerning a mitzvah - e.g., to measure a mikveh to see if it contains [the required] quantity,16 or a cloth to see if it is [large enough to] contract ritual impurity.17

Charity may be pledged to the poor.18 We may go to synagogues and houses of study - and even to theaters and halls of gentiles - to take care19 of matters of public interest on the Sabbath.

One may speak about arranging a marriage for a girl, or arranging study - whether the study of Torah or the study of a profession20 - for a boy.21 We may visit the sick and comfort mourners.22 A person who goes to visit a sick person should say, "It is the Sabbath [when it is forbidden] to plead;23 healing will come soon."24

One may go to the end of the Sabbath boundary to wait until nightfall to take care of the needs of a bride or to take care of the needs of a deceased person [- e.g.], to bring a coffin or shrouds.

[When involved in these matters,] one may tell [a colleague,] "Go to.... If you don't find [the required object] there, bring it from...." "If you can't find it at one hundred, bring it [even] at two hundred." [This is permitted] as long as one does not mention the [maximum] sum he is willing to pay.25

[The rationale for] all these and similar [leniencies] is that [they concern] a mitzvah. And the [verse from which the prohibitions against mundane activity is derived] states, "pursuing your desires." "Your desires" are forbidden; God's desires are permitted.


מֻתָּר לָרוּץ בְּשַׁבָּת לִדְבַר מִצְוָה כְּגוֹן שֶׁיָּרוּץ לְבֵית הַכְּנֶסֶת אוֹ לְבֵית הַמִּדְרָשׁ. וּמְחַשְּׁבִין חֶשְׁבּוֹנוֹת שֶׁל מִצְוָה וּמוֹדְדִין מְדִידָה שֶׁל מִצְוָה כְּגוֹן מִקְוֶה לֵידַע אִם יֵשׁ כַּשִּׁעוּר אוֹ בֶּגֶד לֵידַע אִם מְקַבֵּל טֻמְאָה. וּפוֹסְקִין צְדָקָה לָעֲנִיִּים. וְהוֹלְכִין לְבָתֵּי כְּנֵסִיּוֹת וּלְבָתֵּי מִדְרָשׁוֹת וַאֲפִלּוּ לְטַרְטֵיאוֹת וּטְרַקְלִין שֶׁל כּוּתִים לְפַקֵּחַ עַל עִסְקֵי רַבִּים בְּשַׁבָּת. וּמְשַׁדְּכִין עַל הַתִּינוֹקֶת לֵיאָרֵס וְעַל הַתִּינוֹק לְלַמְּדוֹ סֵפֶר וּלְלַמְּדוֹ אֻמָּנוּת. וּמְבַקְּרִין חוֹלִין וּמְנַחֲמִים אֲבֵלִים. וְהַנִּכְנָס לְבַקֵּר אֶת הַחוֹלֶה אוֹמֵר שַׁבָּת הִיא מִלִּזְעֹק וּרְפוּאָה קְרוֹבָה לָבוֹא. וּמַחְשִׁיכִין עַל הַתְּחוּם לְפַקֵּחַ עַל עִסְקֵי כַּלָּה וְעַל עִסְקֵי הַמֵּת לְהָבִיא לוֹ אָרוֹן וְתַכְרִיכִין. וְאוֹמֵר לוֹ לֵךְ לְמָקוֹם פְּלוֹנִי לֹא מָצָאתָ שָׁם הָבֵא מִמָּקוֹם פְּלוֹנִי לֹא מָצָאתָ בְּמָנֶה הָבֵא בְּמָאתַיִם. וּבִלְבַד שֶׁלֹּא יִזְכֹּר לוֹ סְכוּם מִקָּח. שֶׁכָּל אֵלּוּ וְכַיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן מִצְוָה הֵן וְנֶאֱמַר (ישעיה נח יג) "עֲשׂוֹת חֲפָצֶיךָ" וְכוּ' חֲפָצֶךָ אֲסוּרִין חֶפְצֵי שָׁמַיִם מֻתָּרִין:

Mishneh Torah (Moznaim)

Featuring a modern English translation and a commentary that presents a digest of the centuries of Torah scholarship which have been devoted to the study of the Mishneh Torah by Maimonides.


One may set out on a ship on the Mediterranean Sea on Friday for the sake of the fulfillment of a mitzvah.26 One [must] make an agreement with [the captain] to halt [the journey] on the Sabbath. If, [however,] he does not halt [the journey, it is of no consequence].27

We may nullify28 vows on the Sabbath, both vows that must be nullified for the sake of the Sabbath and vows whose nullification is not related to the Sabbath.29 One may ask a wise man to absolve [a person] of a vow if this is necessary for the sake of the Sabbath.30This is possible despite the fact that the person had the opportunity to have [himself] absolved [of the vow] before the Sabbath. [This license is granted] because all of the above matters concern a mitzvah.


מַפְלִיגִין בַּיָּם הַגָּדוֹל בְּעֶרֶב שַׁבָּת לִדְבַר מִצְוָה וּפוֹסֵק עִמּוֹ לִשְׁבֹּת וְאֵינוֹ שׁוֹבֵת. וּמְפִירִין נְדָרִים בְּשַׁבָּת בֵּין לְצֹרֶךְ שַׁבָּת בֵּין שֶׁלֹּא לְצֹרֶךְ שַׁבָּת. וְנִשְׁאָלִין לְחָכָם עַל הַנְּדָרִים שֶׁהֵן לְצֹרֶךְ הַשַּׁבָּת וּמַתִּירִין אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהָיָה לָהֶן פְּנַאי לְהַתִּירָן קֹדֶם הַשַּׁבָּת שֶׁדְּבָרִים אֵלּוּ מִצְוָה הֵן:


Punishments may not be administered [by the court] on the Sabbath. Although [administering] punishment fulfills a positive command [of the Torah], the observance of a positive commandment does not supersede [the observance of] the Sabbath [laws].

What is implied? A person who was sentenced to be lashed or executed by [the court] should not be lashed or executed on the Sabbath, as [Exodus 35:3] states: "Do not kindle a fire in all of your dwellings on the Sabbath."31 This [verse serves as] a warning to the court not to [execute a person by] burning on the Sabbath. The same principle applies regarding other punishments [administered by the court].32


אֵין עוֹנְשִׁין בְּשַׁבָּת אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהָעֹנֶשׁ מִצְוַת עֲשֵׂה אֵינָהּ דּוֹחָה שַׁבָּת. כֵּיצַד. הֲרֵי שֶׁנִּתְחַיֵּב בְּבֵית דִּין מַלְקוֹת אוֹ מִיתָה אֵין מַלְקִין אוֹתוֹ וְאֵין מְמִיתִין אוֹתוֹ בְּשַׁבָּת שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמות לה ג) "לֹא תְבַעֲרוּ אֵשׁ בְּכל משְׁבֹתֵיכֶם בְּיוֹם הַשַּׁבָּת" זוֹ אַזְהָרָה לְבֵית דִּין שֶׁלֹּא יִשְׂרְפוּ בְּשַׁבָּת מִי שֶׁנִּתְחַיֵּב שְׂרֵפָה וְהוּא הַדִּין לִשְׁאָר עֳנָשִׁין:


A person is permitted to guard his produce on the Sabbath regardless of whether it is detached from the earth or not. If another person comes to take it, or an animal or a wild beast comes to eat it, he may shout at them and beat them to drive them away.

[One might ask:] This involves tending to one's own concerns. Why is it permitted? Because33 one is prohibited only against acquiring new property that one does not possess, earning a wage, making a profit, or seeking to accrue [new] benefits. It is, however, permitted for a person to protect the interests that he already possesses. To what can this be compared? To locking one's house [to prevent] thieves [from entering].


מֻתָּר לְאָדָם לִשְׁמֹר פֵּרוֹתָיו בְּשַׁבָּת בֵּין תְּלוּשִׁים בֵּין מְחֻבָּרִין. וְאִם בָּא אָדָם לִטּל מֵהֶן אוֹ בְּהֵמָה וְחַיָּה לֶאֱכל מֵהֶן גּוֹעֵר בָּהֶן וּמַכֶּה בָּהֶם וּמַרְחִיקָן. וַהֲלֹא דָּבָר זֶה מֵחֲפָצָיו הוּא וְלָמָּה הוּא מֻתָּר. מִפְּנֵי שֶׁלֹּא נֶאֱסַר אֶלָּא לְהַקְנוֹת לְעַצְמוֹ חֲפָצִים שֶׁאֵינָן עַתָּה מְצוּיִים אוֹ לְהִשְׂתַּכֵּר וּלְהַרְוִיחַ וּלְהִטָּפֵל בַּהֲנָאָה שֶׁתָּבוֹא לְיָדוֹ. אֲבָל לִשְׁמֹר מָמוֹנוֹ שֶׁכְּבָר בָּא לְיָדוֹ עַד שֶׁיַּעֲמֹד כְּמוֹת שֶׁהוּא מֻתָּר. הָא לְמָה זֶה דּוֹמֶה לְנוֹעֵל בֵּיתוֹ מִפְּנֵי הַגַּנָּבִים:


A person who protects his grains from birds or who protects his cucumbers and squash from beasts should not clap his hands and dance as he does during the week. [This is] a decree, [instituted] lest one pick up a pebble and throw it four cubits in the public domain.34


הַמְשַׁמֵּר זְרָעָיו מִפְּנֵי הָעוֹפוֹת וּמִקְשָׁאָיו וּמִדְלָעָיו מִפְּנֵי הַחַיָּה לֹא יְסַפֵּק וְלֹא יְרַקֵּד כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁעוֹשֶׂה בְּחל גְּזֵרָה שֶׁמָּא יִטּל צְרוֹר וְיִזְרֹק אַרְבַּע אַמּוֹת בִּרְשׁוּת הָרַבִּים:


All the actions that are forbidden as [part of the category of] sh'vut are not forbidden beyn hash'mashot,35[between sunset and the appearance of the stars].36 They are forbidden only on the Sabbath itself, and they are permitted during beyn hash'mashot,37 provided that [the activity] is necessary because of a mitzvah or a pressing matter.38

What is implied? During beyn hash'mashot it is permitted to climb a tree39 or to swim across water40 to bring a lulav or a shofar. Similarly, one may take an eruv that one has made down from a tree or out from a carmelit.41

Similarly, if one is concerned, anxious, and pressed concerning a matter, [an activity forbidden as] a sh'vut is permitted during beyn hash'mashot. If, however, the matter is not pressing, nor does it concern a mitzvah, it is forbidden. Therefore, one may not tithe produce that definitely has not been tithed,42 although the prohibition against tithing produce on the Sabbath was instituted as a sh'vut.43 One may, however, tithe produce of which one is unsure whether or not it has been tithed.44


כָּל הַדְּבָרִים שֶׁהֵן אֲסוּרִין מִשּׁוּם שְׁבוּת לֹא גָּזְרוּ עֲלֵיהֶן בֵּין הַשְּׁמָשׁוֹת אֶלָּא בְּעַצְמוֹ שֶׁל יוֹם הוּא שֶׁהֵן אֲסוּרִין אֲבָל בֵּין הַשְּׁמָשׁוֹת מֻתָּרִין. וְהוּא שֶׁיִּהְיֶה שָׁם דְּבַר מִצְוָה אוֹ דֹּחַק. כֵּיצַד. מֻתָּר לוֹ בֵּין הַשְּׁמָשׁוֹת לַעֲלוֹת בָּאִילָן אוֹ לָשׁוּט עַל פְּנֵי הַמַּיִם לְהָבִיא לוּלָב אוֹ שׁוֹפָר. וְכֵן מוֹרִיד מִן הָאִילָן אוֹ מוֹצִיא מִן הַכַּרְמְלִית עֵרוּב שֶׁעָשָׂה. וְכֵן אִם הָיָה טָרוּד וְנֶחְפָּז וְנִצְרָךְ לְדָבָר שֶׁהוּא מִשּׁוּם שְׁבוּת בֵּין הַשְּׁמָשׁוֹת הֲרֵי זֶה מֻתָּר. אֲבָל אִם לֹא הָיָה שָׁם דֹּחַק וְלֹא דְּבַר מִצְוָה אָסוּר. לְפִיכָךְ אֵין מְעַשְּׂרִין אֶת הַוַּדַּאי בֵּין הַשְּׁמָשׁוֹת אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאִסּוּר הַפְרָשַׁת הַמַּעֲשֵׂר בְּשַׁבָּת מִשּׁוּם שְׁבוּת. אֲבָל מְעַשְּׂרִים אֶת הַדְּמַאי:


When a minor performs an activity on the Sabbath that is forbidden as a sh'vut - e.g., he plucks from [a plant growing in] a flower pot that does not have a hole, or he carries in a carmelit - the court is not obligated to prevent him from doing so. Similarly, if his father allows him to act in this manner, [the father] need not be rebuked.45


קָטָן שֶׁעָשָׂה בְּשַׁבָּת דָּבָר שֶׁהוּא מִשּׁוּם שְׁבוּת כְּגוֹן שֶׁתָּלַשׁ מֵעָצִיץ שֶׁאֵינוֹ נָקוּב אוֹ טִלְטֵל בְּכַרְמְלִית אֵין בֵּית דִּין מְצֻוִּין לְהַפְרִישׁוֹ. וְכֵן אִם הִנִּיחוֹ אָבִיו אֵין מְמַחִין בְּיָדוֹ:


The Sages forbade the carrying of certain objects on the Sabbath in the same manner as [one carries] during the week. Why was this prohibition instituted?46 [Our Sages] said: If the prophets warned that the manner in which a person walks on the Sabbath should not resemble the manner in which he walks during the week, and similarly, one's conversation on the Sabbath should not resemble one's conversation during the week, as it is written, "[refraining from]... speaking about [mundane] matters," surely the manner in which one carries on the Sabbath should not resemble the manner in which one carries during the week.

In this manner, no one will regard [the Sabbath] as an ordinary weekday and lift up and repair articles, [carrying them] from room to room, or from house to house, or set aside stones and the like. [These restrictions are necessary] for since the person is idle and sitting at home, [it is likely that] he will seek something with which to occupy himself. Thus, he will not have ceased activity and will have negated the motivating principle for the Torah's commandment [Deuteronomy 5:14], "Thus... will rest."47


אָסְרוּ חֲכָמִים לְטַלְטֵל מִקְצָת דְּבָרִים בְּשַׁבָּת כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁהוּא עוֹשֶׂה בְּחל. וּמִפְּנֵי מָה נָגְעוּ בְּאִסּוּר זֶה. אָמְרוּ וּמָה אִם הִזְהִירוּ נְבִיאִים וְצִוּוּ שֶׁלֹּא יִהְיֶה הִלּוּכְךָ בְּשַׁבָּת כְּהִלּוּכְךָ בְּחל וְלֹא שִׂיחַת הַשַּׁבָּת כְּשִׂיחַת החֹל שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ישעיה נח יג) "וְדַבֵּר דָּבָר" קַל וָחֹמֶר שֶׁלֹּא יִהְיֶה טִלְטוּל בְּשַׁבָּת כְּטִלְטוּל בְּחל כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא יִהְיֶה כְּיוֹם חֹל בְּעֵינָיו וְיָבוֹא לְהַגְבִּיהַּ וּלְתַקֵּן כֵּלִים מִפִּנָּה לְפִנָּה אוֹ מִבַּיִת לְבַיִת אוֹ לְהַצְנִיעַ אֲבָנִים וְכַיּוֹצֵא בָּהֶן שֶׁהֲרֵי הוּא בָּטֵל וְיוֹשֵׁב בְּבֵיתוֹ וִיבַקֵּשׁ דָּבָר שֶׁיִּתְעַסֵּק בּוֹ וְנִמְצָא שֶׁלֹּא שָׁבַת וּבִטֵּל הַטַּעַם שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר בְּתוֹרָה (שמות כב יב) (דברים ה יג) "לְמַעַן יָנוּחַ":


Furthermore, when one searches for and carries articles that are used for a forbidden activity, it is possible that one will use them and thus be motivated to perform a [forbidden] labor.

[Another reason for this prohibition is] that there are some people who are not craftsmen and are always idle - e.g., tourists and those that stand on the street corners. These individuals never perform labor. Were they to be allowed to walk, talk, and carry as they do during the week, the result would be that their cessation of activity on [the Sabbath] would not be discernible. For this reason, [our Sages instituted] refraining from such activities,48 for the cessation of such activities is universally applicable.

These are the reasons for the restrictions against carrying [objects].49 The Sages forbade a person from carrying on the Sabbath, with the exception of articles that he requires, as will be explained.50


וְעוֹד כְּשֶׁיְּבַקֵּר וִיטַלְטֵל כֵּלִים שֶׁמְּלַאכְתָּן לְאִסּוּר אֶפְשָׁר שֶׁיִּתְעַסֵּק בָּהֶן מְעַט וְיָבֹא לִידֵי מְלָאכָה. וְעוֹד מִפְּנֵי שֶׁמִּקְצָת הָעָם אֵינָם בַּעֲלֵי אֻמָּנֻיּוֹת אֶלָּא בְּטֵלִין כָּל יְמֵיהֶן כְּגוֹן הַטַּיָּלִין וְיוֹשְׁבֵי קְרָנוֹת שֶׁכָּל יְמֵיהֶן הֵן שׁוֹבְתִים מִמְּלָאכָה וְאִם יִהְיֶה מֻתָּר לְהַלֵּךְ וּלְדַבֵּר וּלְטַלְטֵל כִּשְׁאָר הַיָּמִים נִמְצָא שֶׁלֹּא שָׁבַת שְׁבִיתָה הַנִּכֶּרֶת. לְפִיכָךְ שְׁבִיתָה מִדְּבָרִים אֵלּוּ הִיא שְׁבִיתָה הַשָּׁוָה בְּכָל אָדָם. וּמִפְּנֵי דְּבָרִים אֵלּוּ נָגְעוּ בְּאִסּוּר הַטִּלְטוּל. וְאָסְרוּ שֶׁלֹּא יְטַלְטֵל אָדָם בְּשַׁבָּת אֶלָּא כֵּלִים הַצָּרִיךְ לָהֶם כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר: