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Creating Words from Previously Written Letters On Shabbat

The Daily Halacha Moment - Kotev - Creating Words from Previously Written Letters 📙

״כל השונה הלכות בכל יום - מובטח לו שהוא בן העולם הבא״ (נידה עג ע״א, מגילה כח:)

“Anyone who studies Halachot every day is guaranteed that he is destined for the world-to-come” (Megilla 28b, Niddah 73a)


May one open and close a book which has a stamped word on the side of the pages on Shabbat?


According to some poskim, if a book has words or letters stamped on the edge of the pages (as is common with library books), one is forbidden to open or close the book. [1] However, the halachah follows the more lenient opinion who dispute this ruling and contend that since the book is meant to open and closed constantly, doing so does not qualify as writing or erasing. Some Ashkenazim are stringent, one should follow ones custom. [2]

One may perform petichah in the synagogue, even though there are letters on both doors of the ahron or on the parochet, and by opening and closing it one is combining and separating the letters. [3]

Similarly, It is permitted to put together two halves of a torn page, even if the page is torn in the middle of a letter. [4]


[1]. Levush 340:4; Magen Avraham 340:6; Avnei Nezer O.C. 210; Iglei Tal 54.

[2]. Taz 340:2; Birkei Yosef 340:5 and Machazik Berachah 340:7; Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 5, p. 159; Halichot Olam, vol. 4, p. 275; Yabia Omer, vol. 4, 32:5; ibid., vol. 8, 39:11; vol. 9, 108:182; Ohr LeTzion, vol. 2, 40:2. Kaf HaChaim 340:30 and Yalkut Yosef, Shabbat, vol. 5, p. 130 add that one should not initially stamp the side of a book before Shabbat if one may use the book on Shabbat.

[3]. Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 5, p. 162.

[4]. Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 5, p. 163; Yalkut Yosef, Shabbat, vol. 5, p. 127.

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