The reference numbers below that appear in parentheses (e.g., TY #43) represent vessels or parts of the structure of the Beis ha'Mikdash. The labeling follows that of the diagram of the Tiferes Yisrael. This diagram, which has been included in a separate mailing and can also be found on our site (at, is printed both in the Tiferes Yisrael Mishnayos (Midos Chapter 2 or following Midos) and in Rav P. Kahati's Mishnayos (page 290, at the beginning of Midos).

[19a - 49 lines; 19b - 49 lines]

1)[line 1]כנגד אצילי ידיהןKENEGED ATZILEI YEDEIHEN- [the Kohanim wear the Avnet] at the level of their elbows

2)[line 2]הוה קאימנאHAVAH KA'IMNA- I was standing [before...]

3)[line 3]והוה מדלי לי המיינאיV'HAVAH MADLI LI HEMYANAI- and his belt was too high

4)[line 3]ותיתייה ניהליהV'SEISEI NIHALEI- and he lowered it

5)[line 6]שלקה באצבעוSHE'LAKAH B'ETZBA'O- [a Kohen] who hurt his finger (on Shabbos)

6)[line 7]כורך עליה גמיKORECH ALEHA GEMI- may wrap on it (his wound) a reed [on Shabbos]

7)[line 7]במקדש אבל לא במדינהBA'MIKDASH AVAL LO BA'MEDINAH - [this is permitted only] in the Beis ha'Mikdash but not outside the Beis ha'Mikdash (SHABBOS: EIN SHEVUS BA'MIKDASH)

Shevus refers to actions that the Rabanan prohibited on Shabbos. The Torah states "uva'Yom ha'Shevi'i Tishbos" - "and you shall rest on the seventh day" (Shemos 23:12). The Rabanan learn that this applies even to things that are not Melachos, and as a result they prohibited some actions that were permitted mid'Oraisa (see Shabbos 114b). The prohibitions of Shevus do not apply in the Beis ha'Mikdash.

8)[line 8]ואם להוציא ממנה דם כאן וכאן אסורV'IM L'HOTZI MIMENAH DAM, KAN V'KAN ASUR - and if it is done in order to extract blood, then both here (in the Beis ha'Mikdash) and here (outside of the Beis ha'Mikdash) it is forbidden (SHABBOS: CHABURAH)

(a)Normally, one is Chayav on Shabbos only for performing a Melachah that is a creative act. If a person performed an act of destruction or impairment he is Patur.

(b)Although this rule applies to all other Melachos of Shabbos, there is an argument among the Tana'im as to whether it applies to the Melachos of Chaburah (making a bruise and letting blood) and Hav'arah (lighting a fire). According to Rebbi Shimon, these two Melachos are exceptions to the rule, and one is Chayav even if they only accomplished a destructive act and not a constructive one. Rebbi Yehudah, who rules "Mekalkel b'Chaburah Patur," maintains that there is no difference between these two Melachos and the other Melachos.

9)[line 10]צלצול קטןTZILTZUL KATAN- (O.F. bendel) a thin belt that is not wider than three strands of Shesi (warp) threads

10)[line 11]יתור בגדיםYITUR BEGADIM- an overabundance of clothing (that is, a Kohen Gadol may wear only the four (or eight in the case of the Kohen Gadol) special articles of clothing designated for the Kohanim when performing the Avodah)

11)[line 13]חציצהCHATZITZAH- a substance intervening [between the hand of the Kohen and the Avodah which he is performing]

12)[line 14]בשמאלBI'SEMOL- [Avodah performed] with the left hand [is invalid]

13)[line 14]שלא במקום עבודהSHE'LO BI'MEKOM AVODAH- [the bruise was on his left hand, or on the right hand] not at a place used for the Avodah

14)[line 16]נימא אחת חוצצתNIMA ACHAS CHOTZETZES- even a single [detached] hair intervenes [between the Kohen and his Begadim, which must lie directly "Al Besaro" (on his body; Vayikra 6:3)]

15)[line 17]שלוש על שלושSHALOSH AL SHALOSH- three [Etzba'os] by three [Etzba'os] (which is the minimum size of what can be called a "Beged") (1 Etzba = approximately 1.9, 2.0 or 2.4 cm, depending upon the differing Halachic opinions)

16)[line 31]דגמי מסיD'GEMI MASI- that a reed heals

17)[line 33]כינהKINAH- a louse

18)[line 34]כיון דאתא ואזלא רביתא היאKEIVAN D'ASA V'AZLA REVISA HI- since it (the louse) comes and goes by itself, it is considered part of the body

19)[line 36]אבק עפרAVAK AFAR- dust of earth (finely ground dirt)

20)[line 36]בית השחיBEIS HA'SHECHI- the armpit

21)[line 37]חיקוCHEIKO- his bosom

22)[line 38]נימא מדולדלתNIMA MEDULDELES- a dangling thread [from the Kohen's clothing, is it considered an intervening substance or not?]

23)[line 40]לילה לאו זמן תפילין הואLAILAH LAV ZEMAN TEFILLIN - the commandment of Tefilin doeS not applya t night (MITZVAS ASEH SHEHA'ZEMAN GERAMA: TEFILIN)

(a)Mitzvos which must be performed at a specific time of the day are called Mitzvos Aseh sheha'Zman Geraman. Some examples are Sukah, Lulav, Shofar and Tzitzis. Women are exempt from these Mitzvos, with the exception of Kiddush on Friday night, Matzah on Pesach night, the Korban Pesach, Hakhel and Simchah on Pesach, Shavu'os and Sukos.

(b)According to Rebbi Meir, who rules that Tefilin must be worn on Shabbos and at night, the Mitzvah of Tefilin does not have the status of a Mitzvas Aseh sheha'Zman Gerama. Consequently, women are obligated to wear Tefilin. The Halachah follows the opinion that Tefilin are not worn on Shabbos or at night, and therefore women are exempt as in all Mitzvos Aseh sheha'Zman Geraman.

24)[line 42]איגלגל מילתא ומטא לקמיה דרב אמיIGALGEL MILSA U'MATA L'KAMEI D'REBBI AMI- the matter circulated (lit. rolled around) until it came in front of Rebbi Ami

25)[line 44]ולוים בדוכנןU'LEVIYIM B'DUCHANAN - and the Leviyim upon their platform (DUCHAN)

(a)The Duchan was a platform with three steps that was hewn into the stone floor of the Azarah. Each step was half an Amah high and half an Amah wide. The bottom step rose one Amah above Ezras Yisrael. The highest step was level with the floor of Ezras Kohanim. The distance from the beginning of the lowest step until the Mizbe'ach was 11 Amos, all of which was Ezras Kohanim. The Duchan extended for the entire width of the Azarah (135 Amos).

(b)The main purpose of the Duchan was for the Leviyim to stand upon it facing the Sanctuary (their backs to the people) while singing to HaSh-m, when the Kohanim offered the daily obligatory public Korbenos Olah (burnt offerings) or the Shelamim (peace offering) of Shavu'os. They also played musical instruments to accompany the singing.

(c)The Duchan was also used for Birkas Kohanim (see Background to Kidushin 71:17) when there were too many Kohanim standing on the steps of the Heichal, the usual place for Birkas Kohanim. (They would face the people, with their backs towards the sides of the Azarah, in order that their backs should not be turned towards the Heichal.) (Notes of the TIF'ERES YISRAEL on the Beis ha'Mikdash Diagram TY #25 and TIF'ERES YISRAEL to Midos 2:6)

(d)If one served on the Duchan (a platform on which the Leviyim sang the Shirah), it could serve as proof that one is of prestigious ancestry, and that he is a Levi.

26)[line 44]וישראל במעמדןV'YISRAEL B'MA'AMADAN (ANSHEI MA'AMAD / MA'AMADOS)

(a)The Mishnah in Ta'anis 26a states that the early prophets divided Bnei Yisrael into 24 groups, or Ma'amados. Each Ma'amad consisted of Kohanim, Leviyim and Yisraelim, and it was their duty to make sure that the Korbanos were sacrificed properly. The Ma'amados worked in a rotation and took responsibility for the Korbanos of one week, twice each year.

(b)When each Ma'amad's turn arrived, the Kohanim and Leviyim would travel to the Beis ha'Mikdash to do the Divine service. Some of the Yisraelim traveled to Yerushalayim, also, but most of them stayed in their own cities. It was the job of the Yisraelim to pray that the week's Korbanos should be accepted by HaSh-m. They gathered together to fast, read special portions of the Torah (discussing the creation of the world) and recite the special Shemoneh Esreh of Ta'aniyos (see Background to Shabbos 24:1).

27)[line 49]ציץTZITZ- The Tzitz is one of the eight Bigdei Kehunah of the Kohen Gadol. It is a thin gold plate on which is inscribed the words "Kodesh la'Sh-m," and is worn on the forehead (Shemos 28:36-38; see Charts to Shabbos 63b). The Kohen Gadol is required to constantly keep his mind on it.

28)[line 49]למצנפתL'MITZNEFES- the turban, one of the Bigdei Kehunah of the Kohen Gadol.


29)[line 2]"וכפר עליה הכהן וְטָהֵרָה""V'CHIPER ALEHA HA'KOHEN, V'TAHERAH"- "and the Kohen shall atone for her and she shall become Tehorah" (Vayikra 12:8) - This verse deals with a Yoledes, a woman after childbirth (see Background to Bava Basra 166:4). Before she brings the Korbanos that are required after having a child, she is known as a Mechuseres Kaparah. Only after she brings the Korbanos is she considered Tehorah, which proves that a Mechusar Kaparah is considered Tamei. From this we learn that a Kohen who is Mechusar Kaparah who performs the Divine service is liable to Misah b'Yedei Shamayim, just like a Kohen who is Tamei.

30)[line 5]כהן גדול שלא טבל ושלא קידשKOHEN GADOL SHE'LO TAVAL VESHE'LO KIDESH - a Kohen Gadol who did not immerse in a Mikvah and did not wash his hands and feet (KIDUSH YADAYIM V'RAGLAYIM)

See Background to Zevachim 17:18.

31)[line 13]צהבו פניוTZAHAVU FANAV- his face lit up

32)[line 13]ו"ו אאופתא כתבי לךVAV A'UFTA KASVI LACH- I have written for you a Vav upon a wooden log; i.e. it is illegible, because the grains of the wood interrupt the letter and make it unrecognizable. Rebbi Yochanan tells Rav Asi that his answer is a poor answer.

33)[line 14]דצפראD'TZAFRA- of the morning

34)[line 18]"ורחצו ממנו משה ואהרון ובניו""V'RACHATZU MIMENU MOSHE V'AHARON U'VANAV"- "Moshe, Aharon and his sons would wash their hands from it (the Kiyor)" (Shemos 40:31). The Torah's usage of the word "u'Vanav" ("and his sons"), instead of "all his sons," implies that the Kiyor must hold sufficient water for Moshe, Aharon, and the fewest number of Kohanim referred to by the plural "his sons;" i.e. two. Although Moshe was a Levi, he is referred to as a Kohen because he served in the capacity of a Kohen during the days of the dedication of the Mishkan.

35)[line 24]כיורKIYOR- the water basin for washing the hands and feet of the Kohanim (Shemos 30:17-21). It had 12 faucets and was attached to a pulley that lowered it into a well of water. (The RITVA to Sukah 49b claims that it was lowered into the Yam she'Asah Shlomo every night; see Insights to Sukah 48:3.)

36)[line 30]הפלגתהHIPLAGTAH- you have overstated something that is not possible

37)[line 31]עמידה מן הצדAMIDAH MIN HA'TZAD- standing by support from the side. According to Rebbi Yosi b'Rebbi Yehudah, to fulfill the requirement of simultaneous sanctification of hands and feet in the optimum manner, the proper procedure involves the Kohen, supported by his colleague, placing one foot on top of the other, then placing both hands on top of his feet, and sanctifying all four limbs at once. The Rabanan disagree and hold that an act of standing while relying on someone else's support is not called standing.

38)[line 32]וליתב מיתבV'LEISAV MEISAV- and let the Kohen sit [and sanctify his hands]

39)[line 32]ושירות מעומד הואV'SHEIRUS ME'UMAD HU- the Avodah is valid only if performed in a standing manner


Linah is the term used when any parts of the Korbanos were not placed on the Mizbe'ach until the following morning ("Linah" means to sleep overnight - see RASHI to Bereishis 24:23). They become disqualified and may never be placed on the Mizbe'ach. Nosar, a type of Linah, defines parts of Korbanos that were not eaten during their allotted time (see Background to Zevachim 35:24), that become disqualified and may never be eaten. Here Rebbi rules that the effect of the previous day's Kidush Yadayim v'Raglayim is nullified upon the passing of dawn.

41)[line 35]לאורהL'ORAH- at dawn

42)[line 43]גישהGISHAH- approach

43)[line 49]"להקטיר אִשֶּׁה""L'HAKTIR ISHEH"- "... to burn an offering made by fire to HaSh-m" (Shemos 30:20). The act of burning parts of the animal upon the Mizbe'ach is included in the general category of when they approach the Mizbe'ach, so why does the Torah single out this particular Avodah?