SECTION 326 The Laws Governing Bathing on Shabbos (1-13)

סימן שכו דִּינֵי רְחִיצָה בְּשַׁבָּת וּבוֹ י"ג סְעִיפִים:

1 Our Sages prohibited bathing one’s entire body – or the majority of it – in hot water1 [on Shabbos], whether the hot water was in a container or [collected] in the ground,2 even if [the water] was warmed on Friday.3 [This prohibition was instituted as a safeguard] because of bathhouse attendants who would heat [water] on Shabbos and say that they heated it on Friday.4 True, Jews are not suspected of willfully desecrating the Shabbos.5Nevertheless, [the attendants] would [build a fire by] placing wood under [vats of] cold water while it was still day [on Friday], just before nightfall, and [the wood] would burn the entire Shabbos, heating up the water above it. [Doing so] is forbidden because [of our Sages’] decree: lest one forget and stir the coals after nightfall.6 Therefore, [our Sages] prohibited any person from bathing with hot water even outside a bathhouse cared for by an attendant. [It is] even [forbidden] to pour [hot] water over one’s body to rinse oneself,1 even though this is not the manner in which one bathes in a bathhouse, for in a [bathhouse] one submerges his body and limbs into the water, [and in this instance, one is pouring the water over his body].

[It is] even [forbidden for a person] to wash each of his limbs individually4 instead of washing his entire body at once, for our Sages did not make distinctions with regard to their decrees – and [washing in this manner] somewhat resembles bathing in a bathhouse [where] one washes his entire body or the majority of it.

It is, however, permitted for a person to wash his face, hands, feet, or other limbs7 with hot water 4 as long as he does not wash the majority of his body.8 Therefore, in a place where there is no custom [otherwise], a woman may [perform her preparations to] “wear white garments”9 on Shabbos, [for to do so,] she need not wash anything more than her vaginal area and the area between her thighs. She must, however, take care not to wash with a cloth lest she wring out [moisture] from it.10

All the above applies with regard to [water] heated by fire.11 By contrast, it is permitted to bathe in the hot springs of Tiberias.12 One may even submerge his entire body in the water. Needless to say, one may bathe in cold water.13 Nevertheless, license was only granted [to bathe] in the hot springs of Tiberias when the water is [collected in a pool] in the ground. When, by contrast, [such water] is in a container, it is governed by the same laws as water heated by fire. [The rationale is that] whenever water is in a container, it is impossible to distinguish between water that was heated by fire or water that came from natural hot springs. Therefore, a decree [prohibiting] one was instituted because of the other.

א אָסְרוּ חֲכָמִים לִרְחוֹץ כָּל גּוּפוֹא אוֹ רֻבּוֹב בְּחַמִּין,1 בֵּין אִם הֵם בִּכְלִי בֵּין אִם הֵם בַּקַּרְקַע,ג, 2 אֲפִלּוּ הוּחַמּוּ מֵעֶרֶב שַׁבָּת,ד, 3 מִפְּנֵי הַבַּלָּנִים שֶׁהָיוּ מְחִמִּין בְּשַׁבָּת וְאָמְרוּ "מֵעֶרֶב שַׁבָּת הֵחַמְנוּ".ה, 4 וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁלֹּא נֶחְשְׁדוּ יִשְׂרָאֵל עַל הַשַּׁבָּתוֹת לְחַלֵּל בְּזָדוֹן,ו, 5 מִכָּל מָקוֹם הָיוּ נוֹתְנִים עֵצִים תַּחַת הַמַּיִם צוֹנְנִים מִבְּעוֹד יוֹם סָמוּךְ לַחֲשֵׁכָה, וְהֵם מִתְבַּעֲרִים וְהוֹלְכִים כָּל הַשַּׁבָּתז וּמְחַמְּמִים אֶת הַמַּיִם שֶׁעֲלֵיהֶם, וְדָבָר זֶה אָסוּר מִשּׁוּם גְּזֵרָה, שֶׁמָּא יִשְׁכַּח וְיַחְתֶּה בַּגֶּחָלִים מִשֶּׁחָשֵׁכָה.ח, 6

לְפִיכָךְ, אָסְרוּ לְכָל אָדָם לִרְחוֹץ בְּחַמִּין, אֲפִלּוּ שֶׁלֹּא בְּמֶרְחָץ שֶׁל הַבַּלָּנִים.ט וַאֲפִלּוּ לִשְׁפּוֹךְ הַמַּיִם עַל גּוּפוֹ לְהִשְׁתַּטֵּף,י, 1 שֶׁאֵין זוֹ דֶּרֶךְ רְחִיצָהיא שֶׁבַּמֶּרְחָץ, שֶׁשָּׁם מַכְנִיס גּוּפוֹ וְאֵבָרָיו בְּתוֹךְ הַמַּיִם.יב וַאֲפִלּוּ רוֹחֵץ כָּל אֵבֶר וְאֵבֶר לְבַדּוֹ,יג, 4 וְלֹא רֹב גּוּפוֹ בְּבַת אַחַת, וְאַף עַל פִּי כֵן לֹא חָלְקוּ חֲכָמִים בִּגְזֵרָתָם, כֵּיוָן שֶׁעַל כָּל פָּנִים דּוֹמֶה קְצָת לִרְחִיצָה שֶׁבַּמֶּרְחָץ שֶׁרוֹחֵץ כָּל גּוּפוֹ אוֹ רֻבּוֹ.

אֲבָל מֻתָּר לִרְחוֹץ בְּחַמִּין4 פָּנָיו יָדָיו וְרַגְלָיויד אוֹ שְׁאָר אֵבָרִים,טו, 7 כָּל שֶׁאֵינוֹ רוֹחֵץ רֹב גּוּפוֹ.טז, 8 וְלָכֵן בְּמָקוֹם שֶׁאֵין שָׁם מִנְהָגיז – מֻתָּר לְאִשָּׁה לִלְבּוֹשׁ לְבָנִים9 בְּשַׁבָּת, כִּי אֵינָהּ צְרִיכָה לִרְחוֹץ אֶלָּא פָּנֶיהָ שֶׁל מַטָּה וּבֵין יַרְכוֹתֶיהָ,יח רַק שֶׁתִּזָּהֵר שֶׁלֹּא תִרְחַץ בַּבֶּגֶד, שֶׁלֹּא תָבֹא לִידֵי סְחִיטָה.יט, 10

וְכָל זֶה בְּחַמֵּי הָאוּר,11 אֲבָל בְּחַמֵּי טְבֶרְיָא מֻתָּר לִרְחוֹץ,כ, 12 אֲפִלּוּ לְהַכְנִיס כָּל גּוּפוֹ יַחַד בְּתוֹךְ הַמַּיִם,כא וְאֵין צָרִיךְ לוֹמַר בְּצוֹנְנִים.כב, 13 וּמִכָּל מָקוֹם, לֹא הִתִּירוּ בְּחַמֵּי טְבֶרְיָא אֶלָּא כְּשֶׁהֵם בַּקַּרְקַע, אֲבָל כְּשֶׁהֵם בִּכְלִי – דִּינָם כְּחַמֵּי הָאוּר,כג מִפְּנֵי שֶׁכָּל שֶׁהוּא בִּכְלִי – אֵינוֹ נִכָּר בֵּין חַמֵּי הָאוּר לְחַמֵּי טְבֶרְיָא,כד וְיֵשׁ לִגְזוֹר עַל אֵלּוּ מִפְּנֵי אֵלּוּ:כה

2 There are authorities who maintain that license was not granted [to bathe in] the hot springs of Tiberias unless the place [where the water is located] has no roof. If, however, the place has a roof, it is forbidden because [the person] will sweat, and it is forbidden to [cause oneself] to sweat on Shabbos, as will be explained.14 Other authorities maintain that it is permitted to sweat in the hot springs of Tiberias; [our Sages prohibited causing oneself] to sweat only because of the decree prohibiting bathing, as will be explained.14 Since it is permitted to bathe in the hot springs of Tiberias, certainly one [may cause his body] to sweat because of them. With regard to the halachah, [since the matter concerns] Rabbinic Law, the more lenient opinion may be followed.

ב יֵשׁ אוֹמְרִיםכו שֶׁלֹּא הִתִּירוּ חַמֵּי טְבֶרְיָא אֶלָּא כְּשֶׁאֵין הַמָּקוֹם מְקֹרֶה, אֲבָל אִם הַמָּקוֹם מְקֹרֶה – אָסוּר, מִפְּנֵי שֶׁבָּא לִידֵי זֵעָה, וְאָסוּר לְהַזִּיעַ בְּשַׁבָּת, כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר.כז, 14 וְיֵשׁ אוֹמְרִיםכח שֶׁמֻּתָּר לְהַזִּיעַ בְּחַמֵּי טְבֶרְיָא, שֶׁהֲרֵי לֹא אָסְרוּ אֶת הַזֵּעָה אֶלָּא מִשּׁוּם גְּזֵרַת רְחִיצָה כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר,כט, 14 וְכֵיוָן שֶׁמֻּתָּר לִרְחוֹץ בְּחַמֵּי טְבֶרְיָא – כָּל שֶׁכֵּן שֶׁמֻּתָּר לְהַזִּיעַ בָּהֶם.ל וּלְעִנְיַן הֲלָכָה, בְּדִבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים הַלֵּךְ אַחַר הַמֵּקֵל:לא

3 When there is a water channel15 in which water from a natural hot spring flows, it is forbidden to run a duct of cold water through it,16 i.e., the source of the duct’s water is located outside the water channel and its water flows into a [nearby] cavity in the ground, [creating a pool in which to bathe]. The intent is to warm the water in the duct as it passes through the hot spring’s water. [The rationale for the prohibition is that diverting this water to pass through the hot spring’s water] is comparable to insulating [food] inside a substance that increases its temperature,17 because this [cold] water has been submerged in water running from a hot spring, which is considered [to be a substance] that increases heat. It has already been explained in sec. 257[:1] that it is forbidden to insulate [food] inside [a substance] that increases its heat even if [one placed the food inside the insulation] while it was still day [on Friday], and that if one transgressed [and insulated it in this manner, the food] is forbidden. Therefore, if one transgressed and ran the duct of cold water through the water channel, the water that [subsequently] flows into the cavity is forbidden – both for bathing and for drinking – as if it was heated on Shabbos,16in which instance, [the water] is forbidden even to be used to wash one’s face, hands, or feet, or even an individual limb.

If [water] was directed to flow through the duct on the eve of a festival, it is governed by the laws that apply to water that was heated on a festival, i.e., it is forbidden to bathe one’s entire body or the majority of it in [such water],17 but one may drink from it or wash his face, hands, and feet with it, as will be explained in sec. 511[:1].18

All the above applies when the duct is fully enclosed and its opening emerges outside the water channel. If, however, [the duct] causes cold water to flow directly into the water channel, it is not considered as if he is insulating [the water] at all. The cold water is mixing with the hot water; it is not being submerged in it.19 Therefore, it is permitted to direct cold water to flow into [the channel] while it is still day [on Friday] and [have it] continue to flow there throughout the Shabbos day. [The prohibition] against cooking does not apply since the person began [directing the cold water into the hot spring] while it was still day, and the activity was completed on Shabbos without further intervention, as explained in sec. 252[:1, 14. Hence,] it is permitted to wash one’s entire body at one time in this water channel, like it is [permitted] in other natural hot springs.

ג אַמַּת הַמַּיִם15 שֶׁל חַמֵּי טְבֶרְיָא – אָסוּר לְהַמְשִׁיךְ לְתוֹכָהּלב אֲפִלּוּ מִבְּעוֹד יוֹםלג סִילוֹן שֶׁל צוֹנֵן16 וּפִי הַסִּילוֹן יוֹצֵא חוּץ לָאַמָּה וּמֵימָיו נִשְׁפָּכִים לְעוּקָא שֶׁבַּקַּרְקַע,לד וְעוֹשִׂין כֵּן כְּדֵי שֶׁיִּתְחַמְּמוּ מַיִם הַלָּלוּ שֶׁבַּסִּילוֹן בְּעָבְרָם דֶּרֶךְ הָאַמָּה שֶׁל חַמִּין, וַהֲרֵי זוֹ כְּעֵין הַטְמָנָה בְּדָבָר הַמּוֹסִיף הֶבֶל,לה, 17 שֶׁמַּיִם הַלָּלוּ נִטְמְנוּ בְּתוֹךְ הָאַמָּה שֶׁל חַמֵּי טְבֶרְיָא שֶׁהֵן נִקְרָאִים דָּבָר הַמּוֹסִיף הֶבֶל,לו וּכְבָר נִתְבָּאֵר בְּסִימָן רנ"זלז שֶׁאָסוּר לְהַטְמִין בְּדָבָר הַמּוֹסִיף הֶבֶל אֲפִלּוּ מִבְּעוֹד יוֹם, וְאִם עָבַר וְהִטְמִין – אָסוּר.לח

וְלָכֵן אִם עָבַר וְהִמְשִׁיךְ הַסִּילוֹן שֶׁל צוֹנֵן לְתוֹךְ הָאַמָּה – אֲסוּרִים הַמַּיִם הַנִּשְׁפָּכִים מִמֶּנּוּ לָעוּקָא, בֵּין בִּרְחִיצָה בֵּין בִּשְׁתִיָּה, כְּאִלּוּ הוּחַמּוּ בְּשַׁבָּת,לט, 16 שֶׁאָסוּר אֲפִלּוּ לִרְחוֹץ בָּהֶם פָּנָיו יָדָיו וְרַגְלָיו, וַאֲפִלּוּ אֵבֶר אֶחָד בִּלְבַד.מ

וְאִם הִמְשִׁיךְ סִילוֹן זֶה בְּעֶרֶב יוֹם טוֹב – דִּינָם כְּחַמִּין שֶׁהוּחַמּוּ בְּיוֹם טוֹב, שֶׁאָסוּר לִרְחוֹץ בָּהֶם כָּל גּוּפוֹ אוֹ רֻבּוֹ,17 אֲבָל מֻתָּרִים בִּשְׁתִיָּהמא אוֹ לִרְחוֹץ בָּהֶם פָּנָיו יָדָיו וְרַגְלָיו,מב כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר בְּסִימָן תקי"א.מג, 18

וְכָל זֶה כְּשֶׁגּוּף הַסִּילוֹן מֻקָּף מִכָּל צַד וּפִיו יוֹצֵא חוּץ לָאַמָּה, אֲבָל אִם הוּא שׁוֹפֵךְ הַצּוֹנֵן לְתוֹךְ הָאַמָּה – אֵין זֶה נִקְרָא הַטְמָנָה כְּלָל, שֶׁהַצּוֹנֵן מִתְעָרֵב הוּא בְּחַמִּין וְלֹא נִטְמָן בּוֹ.מד, 19 לְפִיכָךְ, מֻתָּר לְהַמְשִׁיךְ הַצּוֹנֵן מִבְּעוֹד יוֹם לְשָׁם וְהוּא נִמְשָׁךְ לְשָׁם וְהוֹלֵךְ כָּל הַשַּׁבָּת כֻּלָּהּ.

וְאֵין בּוֹ מִשּׁוּם בִּשּׁוּל, כֵּיוָן שֶׁהִתְחִיל מִבְּעוֹד יוֹם וְהוּא נִגְמָר מֵאֵלָיו בְּשַׁבָּת,מה כְּמוֹ שֶׁנִּתְבָּאֵר בְּסִימָן רנ"ב.מו

וּמֻתָּר גַּם כֵּן לִרְחוֹץ אֲפִלּוּ כָּל גּוּפוֹ בְּיַחַד בְּאַמָּה זוֹ, כְּמוֹ בִּשְׁאָר חַמֵּי טְבֶרְיָא:מז

Fig. 33: A duct of cold water that flows through a hot spring
Fig. 33: A duct of cold water that flows through a hot spring

Fig. 34: A duct of cold water that flows into a hot spring
Fig. 34: A duct of cold water that flows into a hot spring

4 A person may not rinse his entire body in cold water and then warm himself opposite a fire, because doing so heats the water on his body, and thus it is considered as if he washed his entire body with hot water.20 It is, however, permitted for him to rinse with cold water after [first] warming himself by a fire,20 because the water on his [body] does not become that hot.

There are authorities who maintain that even one who [merely] washes his hands should be careful not to warm himself opposite a fire, even in a place that is not hot enough to cause a hand to recoil from it, unless he first dries his hands well, because the water on his hands will [be] warmed.21 Thus, it [will be] as if he washed [his hands] with water [that was] heated on Shabbos, and it is forbidden to wash even one limb with water that was heated on Shabbos, even if [the water] was heated on Shabbos in a permitted manner. [Indeed, it is forbidden to wash in such water] even if it was only slightly heated and did not become hot enough to cause a hand to recoil from it.22 One should be stringent and follow their ruling.

ד לֹא יִשְׁתַּטֵּף אָדָם בְּצוֹנֵןמח כָּל גּוּפוֹמט וְיִתְחַמֵּם כְּנֶגֶד הַמְּדוּרָה, מִפְּנֵי שֶׁמַּפְשִׁיר מַיִם שֶׁעָלָיו, וְנִמְצָא כְּרוֹחֵץ בְּחַמִּיןנ כָּל גּוּפוֹ.נא, 20 אֲבָל מֻתָּר לְהִשְׁתַּטֵּף בְּצוֹנֵן אַחַר שֶׁנִּתְחַמֵּם אֵצֶל הָאֵשׁ,נב מִפְּנֵי שֶׁאֵין הַמַּיִם שֶׁעָלָיו מִתְחַמְּמִים כָּל כָּךְ.נג, 20

וְיֵשׁ אוֹמְרִיםנד שֶׁאֲפִלּוּ הָרוֹחֵץ יָדָיו צָרִיךְ לִזָּהֵר שֶׁלֹּא לְחַמְּמָם כְּנֶגֶד הַמְּדוּרָה, אֲפִלּוּ בְּמָקוֹם שֶׁאֵין הַיָּד סוֹלֶדֶת בּוֹ,נה אִם לֹא יְנַגְּבֵם תְּחִלָּה יָפֶה,נו מִפְּנֵי שֶׁמַּפְשִׁיר הַמַּיִם שֶׁעֲלֵיהֶן,נז, 21 וְנִמְצָא כְּרוֹחֵץ בְּחַמִּין שֶׁהוּחַמּוּ בְּשַׁבָּת.נח וְחַמִּין שֶׁהוּחַמּוּ בְּשַׁבָּת אֲפִלּוּ בְּהֶתֵּר – אָסוּר לִרְחוֹץ בָּהֶם אֲפִלּוּ אֵבֶר אֶחָד, וַאֲפִלּוּ לֹא הוּחַמּוּ אֶלָּא מְעַט שֶׁאֵין הַיָּד סוֹלֶדֶת בּוֹ.נט, 22 וְיֵשׁ לְהַחֲמִיר כְּדִבְרֵיהֶם:

5 A person who experiences stomach discomfort is forbidden to place a container that holds hot water 23 on his stomach lest it spill over the majority of his body;20 thus it would be as if he washed the majority of his body with hot water. [This restriction applies] even if [there is only] a small amount of water [in the container] that is not sufficient to wash the majority of [the person’s] body. Similarly, if [the water] was heated on Shabbos even slightly, [i.e.,] without reaching the point that a hand would recoil from it, it is forbidden, as explained.24 It is forbidden to [place an open container of hot water on one’s stomach] even during the week because of the danger – at times the water is boiling hot, [and it may spill and burn the person]. It is, however, permitted to heat a [dry] cloth and place it on one’s stomach, even on Shabbos.25

ה מִי שֶׁחָשׁ בְּמֵעָיו – אָסוּר לִתֵּן עַל גַּבֵּי בִטְנוֹ כְּלִי שֶׁיֵּשׁ בּוֹ מַיִם חַמִּין,ס, 23 שֶׁמָּא יִשָּׁפְכוּסא עַל רֹב גּוּפוֹסב, 20 וְנִמְצָא כְּרוֹחֵץ רֹב גּוּפוֹ בְּחַמִּין.

וַאֲפִלּוּ אִם הֵם מַיִם מֻעָטִים שֶׁאֵין בָּהֶם כְּדֵי רְחִיצַת רֹב גּוּפוֹ, מִכָּל מָקוֹם אִם הוּחַמּוּ בְּשַׁבָּת אֲפִלּוּ מְעַט שֶׁאֵין הַיָּד סוֹלֶדֶת בּוֹ – אָסוּר,סג כְּמוֹ שֶׁנִּתְבָּאֵר.סד, 24

וַאֲפִלּוּ בְּחֹל אָסוּר לַעֲשׂוֹת כֵּן, מִפְּנֵי הַסַּכָּנָה,סה שֶׁפְּעָמִים שֶׁהַמַּיִם רוֹתְחִים.סו

אֲבָל מֻתָּר לְהָחֵם בֶּגֶד וְלִתְּנוֹ עַל גַּבֵּי בִטְנוֹ, וַאֲפִלּוּ בְּשַׁבָּת:סז, 25

6 A person who bathes in a river 26 must dry his body thoroughly when he ascends from the river, so that no water will remain on his body, [and] he does not carry [this water] four cubits in a karmelis,27 as explained in sec. 301[:61].28 [The person] should also be careful not to swim in the river. Also, he must not cause an object floating on the water to move. For example, if there are slivers of wood on the surface of the water, it is forbidden to move them to either side so as to clear [the surface of] the water, as will be explained in sec. 339[:9].29 Moreover, everyone who bathes must be careful not to wring [water] out of his hair [on Shabbos]. True, [the Scriptural prohibition against] wringing out [liquids] does not apply with regard to hair30 because hair is firm and does not actually absorb [water]. Nevertheless, [squeezing water from one’s hair] is forbidden according to Rabbinic Law.

Since people at large do not know how to be careful about all the above, it has become a widespread custom in these countries not to bathe at all on Shabbos, not even in cold water, even though [according to the letter of the law] there is no prohibition [involved].

ו הָרוֹחֵץ בַּנָּהָר26 – צָרִיךְ שֶׁיְּנַגֵּב גּוּפוֹ יָפֶה כְּשֶׁעוֹלֶה מֵהַנָּהָר, שֶׁלֹּא יִשָּׁאֲרוּ הַמַּיִם עָלָיו וִיטַלְטְלֵם אַרְבַּע אַמּוֹת בְּכַרְמְלִית,סח, 27 כְּמוֹ שֶׁנִּתְבָּאֵר בְּסִימָן ש"א.סט, 28

וְעוֹד צָרִיךְ [לִזָּהֵר] שֶׁלֹּא לָשׁוּט גּוּפוֹ בַּנָּהָר,ע וְגַם שֶׁלֹּא לְהָשִׁיט שׁוּם דָּבָר, כְּגוֹן הַקִּסְּמִין שֶׁעַל פְּנֵי הַמַּיִם אָסוּר לְהַפְצִילָן לְכָאן וּלְכָאן לְנַקּוֹת הַמַּיִם, כְּמוֹ שֶׁיִּתְבָּאֵר בְּסִימָן של"ט.עא, 29

וְעוֹד צָרִיךְ לִזָּהֵר כָּל רוֹחֵץ שֶׁלֹּא לִסְחוֹט שְׂעָרוֹ. וְאַף שֶׁלֹּא שַׁיָּךְ סְחִיטָה בְּשֵׂעָר,עב, 30 שֶׁהַשֵּׂעָר קָשֶׁה וְאֵינוֹ בּוֹלֵעַעג הַמַּיִם בְּתוֹכוֹ מַמָּשׁ, מִכָּל מָקוֹם אָסוּר מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִים.עד

וּמִפְּנֵי שֶׁאֵין הַכֹּל יוֹדְעִים לִזָּהֵר בְּכָל זֶה, לָכֵן נִתְפַּשֵּׁט הַמִּנְהָג בִּמְדִינוֹת אֵלּוּ שֶׁלֹּא לִרְחוֹץ כְּלָל בְּשַׁבָּת אֲפִלּוּ בְּצוֹנֵן,עה אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵין אִסּוּר בְּדָבָר מִן הַדִּין:עו

7 A person is permitted to immerse himself [in a mikveh to purify himself] from his impurity on Shabbos.31[This applies] even to one who is required to immerse according to Scriptural Law – for example, a niddah or the like. [The rationale is that it] does not seem like [the person] is correcting a situation, but rather [he or she appears to be] like one who descends [into the water] to cool off. [This leniency applies] even when one immerses in foul water32 in which he normally would not cool off. And it even applies in the rainy season [i.e., the winter], when it is not the ordinary practice to cool off. [Leniency is granted] because there are times when a person becomes soiled with mud and filth, and bathes even in the rainy season [i.e., the winter], and even in foul water, in order to remove the mud and filth from himself.33

It has become customary in these countries to forbid the immersion of a woman on Shabbos unless her husband is in the city and she did not have the opportunity to immerse before Shabbos,34or her husband had not been in the city and arrived on Friday, and therefore the woman was not negligent in failing to immerse herself beforehand.35 However, whenever her husband is in the city, and she has the opportunity to immerse herself [before Shabbos] and does not do so, she should not immerse herself on Shabbos.

There are authorities who have provided a rationale for the custom: Since the custom of not bathing on Shabbos has become widespread, when an impure person immerses to purify himself or herself, he or she seems to be correcting a situation, and [does] not [seem to be] immersing [in the water] to cool off, since it is not at all the common practice to bathe to cool off for the reason explained,36 even though [strictly speaking] there is no prohibition regarding the matter.

Nevertheless, it is permitted to immerse after a seminal emission. Since this immersion is not a Scriptural obligation37 (or even an absolute Rabbinic obligation,38 the man does not appear to be correcting a situation. Similarly, a heretic who repents may immerse himself on Shabbos, for his immersion is not required by Scriptural Law as is the immersion of a convert.39 (Moreover, [the immersion of a repentant heretic] is not even an absolute Rabbinic obligation.)40 Similarly, a woman who needs to immerse herself a second time merely as a stringency 41 may immerse herself on Shabbos, as explained in Yoreh Deah, sec. 197.)42

ז אָדָם מֻתָּר לִטְבּוֹל מִטֻּמְאָתוֹ בְּשַׁבָּת,עז, 31 אֲפִלּוּ הַצָּרִיךְ טְבִילָה מִן הַתּוֹרָה,עח כְּגוֹן נִדָּהעט וְכַיּוֹצֵא בָהֶם, מִפְּנֵי שֶׁאֵינוֹ נִרְאֶה כִּמְתַקֵּן אֶלָּא כְּיוֹרֵד לְהָקֵר.פ וַאֲפִלּוּ טוֹבֵל בְּמַיִם סְרוּחִים32 שֶׁאֵין דֶּרֶךְ לְהָקֵר בָּהֶם, וַאֲפִלּוּ בִּימוֹת הַגְּשָׁמִים שֶׁאֵין דֶּרֶךְ לְהָקֵר כְּלָל, מִכָּל מָקוֹם פְּעָמִים שֶׁאָדָם מְלֻכְלָךְ בְּטִיט וְצוֹאָה, וְרוֹחֵץ אֲפִלּוּ בִּימוֹת הַגְּשָׁמִים וַאֲפִלּוּ בְּמַיִם סְרוּחִים כְּדֵי לְהַעֲבִיר הַטִּיט וְהַצּוֹאָה מֵעָלָיו.פא, 33

וּבִמְדִינוֹת אֵלּוּ נָהֲגוּ לֶאֱסוֹר טְבִילַת אִשָּׁה בְּשַׁבָּת, אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן יֵשׁ בַּעְלָהּ בָּעִירפב וְגַם לֹא הָיָה אֶפְשָׁר לָהּ לִטְבּוֹל קֹדֶם הַשַּׁבָּת,פג, 34 אוֹ שֶׁלֹּא הָיָה בַּעְלָהּ בָּעִיר וּבָא בְּעֶרֶב שַׁבָּת,פד שֶׁלֹּא פָשְׁעָה בְּמַה שֶּׁלֹּא טָבְלָה קֹדֶם לָכֵן.פה, 35 אֲבָל כָּל שֶׁהָיָה בַּעְלָהּ בָּעִיר וְהָיָה אֶפְשָׁר לָהּ לִטְבּוֹל וְלֹא טָבְלָה – אֵינָהּ טוֹבֶלֶת בְּשַׁבָּת.פו

וְיֵשׁ שֶׁנָּתְנוּ טַעַם לַמִּנְהָג,פז שֶׁכֵּיוָן שֶׁנִּתְפַּשֵּׁט הַמִּנְהָג שֶׁלֹּא לִרְחוֹץ בְּשַׁבָּת, אִם כֵּן כְּשֶׁטָּמֵא טוֹבֵל מִטֻּמְאָתוֹ – הֲרֵי זֶה נִרְאֶה כִּמְתַקֵּן וְלֹא כְּיוֹרֵד לְהָקֵר, כֵּיוָן שֶׁאֵין דֶּרֶךְ כְּלָל לִרְחוֹץ לְהָקֵר מִטַּעַם שֶׁנִּתְבָּאֵר,פח, 36 אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵין אִסּוּר בְּדָבָר.

וּמִכָּל מָקוֹם, מֻתָּר לִטְבּוֹל לְקֶרִי,פט שֶׁכֵּיוָן שֶׁטְּבִילָה זוֹ אֵינָהּ מִן הַתּוֹרָהצ, 37 (וְאַף לֹא חִיּוּב גָּמוּר מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִיםצא, 38 – אֵינוֹ נִרְאֶה כִּמְתַקֵּן.צב וְכֵן הַמּוּמָר שֶׁשָּׁב בִּתְשׁוּבָה מֻתָּר לִטְבּוֹל בְּשַׁבָּת,צג שֶׁאֵין טְבִילָתוֹ מִן הַתּוֹרָה כְּמוֹ טְבִילַת הַגֵּרצד, 39 (וְאַף אֵין חִיּוּב גָּמוּר מִדִּבְרֵי סוֹפְרִיםצה).40

וְכֵן כָּל אִשָּׁה שֶׁצְּרִיכָה לַחֲזוֹר וְלִטְבּוֹל לְחֻמְרָא בְּעָלְמָא41 – מֻתֶּרֶת לִטְבּוֹל בְּשַׁבָּת, כְּמוֹ שֶׁנִּתְבָּאֵר בְּיוֹרֶה דֵעָה סִימָן קצ"[ז]צו):42

8 It is permitted to wash one’s face, hands, and feet with substances that do not remove hair that are mixed with substances that do remove hair,43 provided the majority [of the compound] is not composed of substances that will certainly remove hair,44 for then [the removal of hair] is an inevitable consequence.45

ח מֻתָּר לִרְחוֹץ פָּנָיו יָדָיו וְרַגְלָיו בִּדְבָרִים שֶׁאֵינָם מַשִּׁירִים שֵׂעָר מְעֹרָבִים עִם דְּבָרִים הַמַּשִּׁירִים,צז, 43 וּבִלְבַד שֶׁלֹּא יְהֵא הָרֹב מִדָּבָר שֶׁמַּשִּׁירצח בְּוַדַּאיצט, 44 בְּעִנְיָן שֶׁהוּא "פְּסִיק רֵישֵׁהּ וְלֹא יָמוּת":ק, 45

9 It is permitted to rinse one’s hands together with bran,46 because this is considered as kneading [dough] in an irregular manner.47 True, one should be stringent and not knead [dough] in an irregular manner on Shabbos unless one added the water [to the bran] on Friday, as stated in sec. 324[:3]. Nevertheless, in this instance, [since the person] is not actually pouring water over the bran, but rather, taking it with wet hands, all authorities agree that it is permitted.48

ט מֻתָּר לִרְחוֹץ יָדָיו בְּמֻרְסָן,קא, 46 מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהוּא גִּבּוּל כִּלְאַחַר יָד.קב, 47 וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁיֵּשׁ לְהַחֲמִיר שֶׁלֹּא לְגַבֵּל עַל יְדֵי שִׁנּוּי בְּשַׁבָּת אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן נָתַן הַמַּיִם מֵעֶרֶב שַׁבָּת, כְּמוֹ שֶׁנִּתְבָּאֵר בְּסִימָן שכ"ד,קג מִכָּל מָקוֹם כָּאן שֶׁאֵינוֹ נוֹתֵן מַיִם מַמָּשׁ עַל הַמֻּרְסָן אֶלָּא שֶׁלּוֹקְחוֹ בְּיָדַיִם רְטֻבּוֹת – מֻתָּר לְדִבְרֵי הַכֹּל:קד, 48

10 It is forbidden to wash one’s hands with salt,49 and certainly [not] with soap or other products made from [animal] fat, because these [substances] will dissolve in the process, thus bringing a new entity into existence50 on Shabbos. This resembles a [forbidden] labor. [To cite a parallel:] As explained in sec. 320[:16], it is forbidden to crush snow or hail for this reason.

[A different ruling applies] according to the authorities who maintain that the prohibition against crushing snow or hail is a decree [instituted as a safeguard lest] one squeeze fruit that is set aside [to be squeezed] for its juice – for snow and hail are also set aside to be used for water, as explained in that source [320:19]. Since soap and other products made from [animal] fat are not set aside to produce liquids, it is permitted to cause them to dissolve even as an initial preference. Despite this [opinion], one should act stringently in accordance with the first opinion.51

י אָסוּר לִרְחוֹץ יָדָיו בְּמֶלַח,קה, 49 וְכָל שֶׁכֵּן בְּבוֹרִיתקו אוֹ שְׁאָר חֵלֶב,קז מִפְּנֵי שֶׁנִּמּוֹחַ עַל יָדוֹ,קח וַהֲרֵי זֶה כְּמוֹלִיד50 בְּשַׁבָּת,קט וְדוֹמֶה לִמְלָאכָה, כְּמוֹ שֶׁנִּתְבָּאֵר בְּסִימָן ש"כ,קי שֶׁאָסוּר לְרַסֵּק שֶׁלֶג אוֹ בָּרָד מִטַּעַם זֶה.

וּלְדִבְרֵי הָאוֹמְרִים שֶׁטַּעַם אִסּוּר לְרַסֵּק שֶׁלֶג וּבָרָד הוּא מִשּׁוּם גְּזֵרַת סְחִיטַת פֵּרוֹת הָעוֹמְדִים לְמַשְׁקִין, שֶׁאַף הַשֶּׁלֶג וְהַבָּרָד לְמֵימֵיהֶם הֵם עוֹמְדִים, כְּמוֹ שֶׁנִּתְבָּאֵר שָׁם,קיא אִם כֵּן בּוֹרִית וּשְׁאָר חֵלֶב שֶׁאֵינָן עוֹמְדִים לְמַשְׁקִין – מֻתָּר לְרַסֵּק לְכַתְּחִלָּה.קיב

אֲבָל יֵשׁ לְהַחֲמִיר כַּסְבָרָא הָרִאשׁוֹנָה:קיג, 51

11 [The following laws apply when] a bath is heated by a fire from the outside, from below it.52 If the vents through which the bath is heated were closed on Friday, it is permitted to bathe in [the warm water] immediately [upon nightfall] on Saturday night, since [the water] was not heated on Shabbos. If, however, these vents were not closed on Friday, even though [the water] was heated on Shabbos as a matter of course,53 it is [nonetheless] necessary to wait until the amount of time it would take to heat [the water] passes on Saturday night, since [the water] was heated in a forbidden manner. For it is forbidden to have [the bath’s] vents left open on Shabbos when there is a fire burning under it. [This is] a decree [instituted] lest one stir the coals [to cause them to burn more effectively].54

יא מֶרְחָץקיד שֶׁהָאוּר נִסֹּקֶת מִבַּחוּץ מִתַּחְתָּיו,52 אִם סָתְמוּ מֵעֶרֶב שַׁבָּת אוֹתָן הַנְּקָבִים שֶׁהַמֶּרְחָץ מִתְחַמֵּם עַל יָדוֹקטו – מֻתָּר לִרְחוֹץ בּוֹ בְּמוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת מִיָּד,קטז שֶׁהֲרֵי לֹא נִתְחַמֵּם כְּלָל בְּשַׁבָּת.קיז אֲבָל אִם לֹא סָתְמוּ נְקָבָיו מֵעֶרֶב שַׁבָּת, אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁמֵּאֵלָיו הוּחַם בְּשַׁבָּת53 – צָרִיךְ לְהַמְתִּין לָעֶרֶב בִּכְדֵי שֶׁיֵּעָשׂוּ, לְפִי שֶׁהוּחַם בְּאִסּוּר, שֶׁאָסוּר לִהְיוֹת נְקָבָיו פְּתוּחִים בְּשַׁבָּת כְּשֶׁיֵּשׁ אֵשׁ תַּחְתָּיו, גְּזֵרָה שֶׁמָּא יַחְתֶּה בַּגֶּחָלִים:קיח, 54

12 Our Sages forbade entering a bathhouse [on Shabbos] even merely to break out in a sweat.55 [This prohibition was instituted] because of the transgressors who would bathe in hot water and [excuse themselves, saying,] “We [entered only] to break out in a sweat.”

There are authorities who maintain that it is forbidden to even pass through a bathhouse in a place where one could break out in a sweat, even when this is not one’s intent.

יב אָסְרוּ חֲכָמִים לִכָּנֵס לַמֶּרְחָץקיט אֲפִלּוּ לְהַזִּיעַ בִּלְבַד,קכ, 55 מִפְּנֵי עוֹבְרֵי עֲבֵרָה שֶׁהָיוּ רוֹחֲצִין בְּחַמִּין וְאָמְרוּ "מַזִּיעִין אֲנַחְנוּ".קכא

וְיֵשׁ אוֹמְרִיםקכב שֶׁאֲפִלּוּ לַעֲבוֹר בַּמֶּרְחָץ בְּמָקוֹם שֶׁיָּכוֹל לְהַזִּיעַ אָסוּר, אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵינוֹ מִתְכַּוֵּן לְכָךְ:קכג

13 [The following laws apply] in a town in which both Jews and non-Jews dwell, and [the town] has a bathhouse in which people bathe on Shabbos.56If the majority of the populace is non-Jewish, it is permitted to bathe in [the bathhouse] immediately [upon nightfall] Saturday night, since it can be assumed that [the water] was heated on Shabbos for the sake of the non-Jews, for they are the majority.57 If the majority [of the population] is Jewish, it is necessary to wait until the time it would take to heat the water passes on Saturday night. Even if the populace is equally divided [between Jews and non-Jews], it is necessary to wait this amount of time, for presumably [the water] was heated for [the sake of] both [the Jews and the non-Jews].

יג עִיר שׁיִשְׂרָאֵל וְנָכְרִים דָּרִים בָּהּ וְיֵשׁ בָּהּ מֶרְחָץ רוֹחֶצֶת בְּשַׁבָּת,56 אִם רֹב נָכְרִים – מֻתָּר לִרְחוֹץ בָּהּ לְמוֹצָאֵי שַׁבָּת מִיָּד,קכד שֶׁמִּן הַסְּתָםקכה הוּחַמָּה בְּשַׁבָּת בִּשְׁבִיל הַנָּכְרִים שֶׁהֵם הָרֹב.57 וְאִם רֻבָּהּ יִשְׂרָאֵל – צָרִיךְ לְהַמְתִּין עַד כְּדֵי שֶׁיּוּחַם. וַאֲפִלּוּ בְּמֶחֱצָה עַל מֶחֱצָה צָרִיךְ לְהַמְתִּין כֵּן,קכו לְפִי שֶׁמִּן הַסְּתָם הוּחַמָּה בְּשַׁבָּת בִּשְׁבִיל שְׁנֵיהֶם:קכז