SECTION 373 The Laws Applying to Two Balconies [Protruding] From Two Lofts (1)

סימן שעג דִּינֵי שְׁתֵּי גְזוּזְטְרָאוֹת בִּשְׁתֵּי עֲלִיּוֹת וּבוֹ סְעִיף אֶחָד:

1 [The following laws apply when] two balconies protrude from two lofts,1 one [directly] opposite the other, and a board – serving as a bridge – that runs from one [balcony] to the other was affixed to [the balconies] with nails so that it could not be removed on Shabbos (or [the owners] explicitly stated that they are leaving the board in place for the entire Shabbos):2 If [the board] is four [handbreadths] wide, it is considered as an entrance, and [the residents of the two lofts] may join together in a [common] eruv. [Alternatively,] if they desire, [the residents of each loft] may make an independent eruv.3

If, however, [the balconies] were not positioned [directly] opposite one another, even though they are facing each other, e.g., one [balcony] is in the north and the other in the south, but one [balcony] is positioned towards the east and the other is positioned in the other direction, towards the west, and [thus, the balconies] are not aligned with each other, [the residents of the two lofts] may not join in a [common] eruv. [See fig. 90. The rationale for this prohibition:] Since the board connecting one [balcony] to the other will run from the corner of one [balcony] to the corner of the other, it is not considered as an entrance, for it is not common to make an entrance in a corner.4

When does the above apply? When [the balconies] diverge by [at least] three handbreadths. [By contrast, a divergence that is] less than three handbreadths is of no consequence, and [the balconies] are [considered] as opposite each other.

Even if [the balconies] are positioned [directly] opposite each other, if one [balcony] is three handbreadths [or more] higher than the other, [the board] is not considered as an entrance.5

All [the above] applies when [the balconies] are distant from each other. If, however, there is less than four [handbreadths] between them, [the residents] may join in a [common] eruv, even if there is no board between [the balconies], because it is easy to step from the edge of one [balcony] to the edge of the other; it is as if [the balconies] are actually next to each other. Therefore, [the residents of the two lofts] may not make independent eruvin and carry only on their respective [balconies] because [the residents of each of the lofts] cause [those of] the other to be forbidden [to carry],6 since [the balconies] are close to, [i.e.,] within four [handbreadths] of, each other.7

[There is an exception to the above:] When [the two balconies are] not close to each other across their entire [width]. Instead, a portion protrudes in the center [of the balconies, where they are close], but their ends are four [handbreadths] distant from each other8 and [additionally, the areas that] are close [to each other] are not wider than ten cubits.9

To what does [the restriction mentioned previously] apply? To carrying on the balconies themselves. However, [the residents of] the lofts that are adjacent to [the balconies]10 may make independent eruvin with [the residents of] the homes in their courtyard even though the balconies are adjacent to each other, provided they do not carry on the balconies.

If they desire, [the residents of] all the houses in the courtyard where [one] loft is located may even establish an eruv with [the residents of] all the houses in the courtyard where the [other] loft is located, because the balconies serve as an entrance from one [courtyard] to the other.11 All that is necessary is that there be ladders leading from the homes to the lofts, as required.12 [The same] law [applies] if the balconies are distant from each other, but there is a board running from one to the other.13

א שְׁתֵּי גְזוּזְטְרָאוֹתא הַבּוֹלְטוֹת מִב' עֲלִיּוֹתב,1 זוֹ כְּנֶגֶד זוֹ, וְנָתַן בֵּינֵיהֶן נֶסֶר כְּמִין גֶּשֶׁר מִזּוֹ לְזוֹ וּקְבָעוֹ שָׁם בְּמַסְמֵר שֶׁלֹּא יוּכַל לְהִנָּטֵל בְּשַׁבָּתג (אוֹ שֶׁבִּטְּלוֹ בְּפֵרוּשׁ לְכָל הַשַּׁבָּתד),2 אִם הוּא רָחָב ד' – הֲרֵי הוּא כְּפֶתַח וּמְעָרְבִין יַחַד, וְאִם רָצוּ, כָּל אַחַת מְעָרֶבֶת לְעַצְמָהּ.ה,3 אֲבָל אִם הָיוּ זוֹ שֶׁלֹּא כְּנֶגֶד זוֹ, אֲפִלּוּ אִם זוֹ בְּרוּחַ זוֹ וְזוֹ בְּרוּחַ שֶׁכְּנֶגְדּוֹ, כְּגוֹן שֶׁזּוֹ בַּצָּפוֹן וְזוֹ בַּדָּרוֹם אֶלָּא שֶׁאַחַת מְשׁוּכָה לַמִּזְרָח וְאַחַת לַמַּעֲרָב וְאֵינָן מְכֻוָּנוֹת זוֹ כְּנֶגֶד זוֹ – אֵינָן יְכוֹלִים לְעָרֵב יַחַד, מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהַנֶּסֶר שֶׁיִּתְּנוּ מִזּוֹ לְזוֹ יָבֹא מִקֶּרֶן זָוִית שֶׁל זוֹ לְשֶׁל זוֹ וְאֵינוֹ חָשׁוּב כְּפֶתַח, שֶׁאֵין דֶּרֶךְ לַעֲשׂוֹת פֶּתַח בְּקֶרֶן זָוִית.ו,4 בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים? כְּשֶׁהֵן מְשׁוּכוֹת זוֹ מִכְּנֶגֶד זוֹ ג' טְפָחִים, אֲבָל פָּחוֹת מִג' טְפָחִים אֵינוֹ כְּלוּם, וְכִמְכֻוָּנוֹת הֵן. וַאֲפִלּוּ אִם הֵן מְכֻוָּנוֹת מַמָּשׁ, אִם הָאַחַת גָּבוֹהַּ מֵחֲבֶרְתָּהּ ג' טְפָחִים – אֵינוֹ חָשׁוּב פֶּתַח.ז,5

וְכָל זֶה כְּשֶׁהֵן רְחוֹקוֹת זוֹ מִזּוֹ. אֲבָל אִם אֵין הַמֶּרְחָק שֶׁבֵּינֵיהֶן ד', אַף שֶׁאֵין שָׁם נֶסֶר כְּלָל – מְעָרְבִין יַחַד,ח מִפְּנֵי שֶׁנּוֹחַ לִפְסוֹעַ מִשְּׂפַת זוֹ לִשְׂפַת זוֹט וּכְאִלּוּ הֵן סְמוּכוֹת זוֹ לְזוֹ מַמָּשׁ. וְלָכֵן אֵינָן יְכוֹלִים לְעָרֵב כָּל אַחַת לְעַצְמָהּ וּלְטַלְטֵל זוֹ בְּשֶׁלָּהּ וְזוֹ בְּשֶׁלָּהּ, מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהֵן אוֹסְרוֹת זוֹ עַל זוֹ,6 כֵּיוָן שֶׁהֵן קְרוֹבוֹת זוֹ לְזוֹ בְּתוֹךְ ד',7 אֶלָּא אִם כֵּן קֵרוּב זֶה שֶׁבֵּינֵיהֶן אֵינוֹ בְּמִלּוּאוֹ אֶלָּא בְּאֶמְצַע רָחְבָּן בִּלְבָד, שֶׁיֵּשׁ שָׁם בְּלִיטָה, אֲבָל בִּקְצוֹתֵיהֶן הֵן רְחוֹקוֹת זוֹ מִזּוֹ ד',8 וְגַם אֵין בְּקֵרוּב זֶה יוֹתֵר מֵעֲשָׂרָה אַמּוֹת.י,9

בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים? לְטַלְטֵל בִּגְזוּזְטְרָאוֹת עַצְמָן. אֲבָל הָעֲלִיּוֹת שֶׁאֶצְלָן10 יְכוֹלָה כָּל אַחַת לְעָרֵב לְעַצְמָהּ עִם הַבָּתִּים שֶׁבַּחֲצֵרָהּ, אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁגְּזוּזְטְרָאוֹתֵיהֶם סְמוּכוֹת זוֹ לְזוֹ, רַק שֶׁלֹּא יְטַלְטְלוּ בִּגְזוּזְטְרָאוֹת. וְאִם יִרְצוּ יְכוֹלִים אֲפִלּוּ כָּל הַבָּתִּים שֶׁבַּחֲצַר עֲלִיָּה זוֹ לְעָרֵב עִם כָּל הַבָּתִּים שֶׁבַּחֲצַר עֲלִיָּה זוֹ, לְפִי שֶׁהַגְּזוּזְטְרָאוֹת הֵן פֶּתַח בֵּינֵיהֶן,יא,11 רַק שֶׁיִּהְיוּ סֻלָּמוֹת כְּדִינָם מֵהַבָּתִּים לָעֲלִיּוֹת.יב,12 וְהוּא הַדִּין אִם הַגְּזוּזְטְרָאוֹת רְחוֹקוֹת אֶלָּא שֶׁנָּתַן נֶסֶר מִזּוֹ לְזוֹ:13


Fig. 90: A board connecting two balconies on opposite sides of the public domain that are not aligned directly facing each other
Fig. 90: A board connecting two balconies on opposite sides of the public domain that are not aligned directly facing each other