Volume 39 Number 85
                 Produced: Wed Jun 18  6:01:53 US/Eastern 2003

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Chacham Tzvi - another angle
         [Judy and Paul Shaviv]
Cleaning Kitniyot
         [Menashe Elyashiv]
Eruv in Flatbush
         [Joseph Mosseri]
Kitniyot (2)
         [Chana Luntz, Akiva Miller]
Kohein's liability for invalidating a qorban
         [Art Werschulz]
Kosher lo-carb snack bars?
         [Paul Serkin]
new mailing list - Israel-Food !
         [David and Toby Curwin]
On The Calendar and  Astonomy
         [Reuben Rudman]
pictures/illustrations to help understanding Mishnah Keilim?
         [Paul Ginsburg]
         [Eli Turkel]
Travel to the Far East
Umbrellas and New Gezerot
         [Harlan Braude]


From: Judy and Paul Shaviv <shaviv@...>
Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2003 21:31:21 -0400
Subject: Chacham Tzvi - another angle

While the list has the attention of numerous contributors who clearly
know something about the Chacham Tvi, may I raise a completely
tangential question which I have been pursuing over the last few months?
In his son, R. Yaakov Emden's autobiography, Megilat Sepher, and in R
Yaakov Emden's teshuvot, he relates the story of how the Chacham Tzvi's
portrait was painted when he visited London in 1714 (I think), and how
"many copies" were made of the painting which were sold to (presumably
Sephardi) brokers on the London stock exchange.  One copy of this
painting hangs in the Jewish Museum in London; one is in private hands
in Jerusalem; one was bought by my parents-in-law some years ago in
London.  Does anyone know anything about the artist, or about the
existence of other copies? or any other information about the paintings?
Replies, off-list iif necessary, would be appreciated!

Paul Shaviv, Toronto


From: Menashe Elyashiv <elyashm@...>
Date: Fri, 13 Jun 2003 10:47:42 +0300
Subject: Cleaning Kitniyot

In past years, dry legumes were not produced for Pesah, and had to be
checked very well, because one could find foreign objects in them. In
the last few years, the newer bedasim (BetYosef, Yoreh Deaa etc.) have
dry legumes and many kitniyot produces under their supervision, and the
rice is very clean, even so, we still check 3 times.


From: Joseph Mosseri <joseph.mosseri@...>
Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2003 23:35:41 -0400
Subject: Eruv in Flatbush

Regarding the post by Gil Student in Mail Jewish vol39 num82.

If you're not aware of it there is a New Bet Yosef Mehisssot Erub in
Brooklyn that was erected in Brooklyn by the Sephardic Rabbinical
Council and the backing of Rabbi Obadiah Yosef.

There is a web site with some more details www.erub.org

Also an English translation of a teshoubah by Rabbi Obadiah Yosef on
Erubin in Modern Cities is available upon request.

Joseph Mosseri


From: Chana Luntz <Chana@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jun 2003 17:40:36 +0100
Subject: Kitniyot

Bernard Raab <beraab@...> writes:
>>>I accept this as firsthand testimony that such grains DO find their
>way into other grains even nowdays. I have seen similar comments over
>the years, posted by sefaradim who buy ordinary rice in the supermarket,
>check it grain by grain, and occasionally DO find a different sort of
>grain in there. <<
>Is this truly a general practice of sephardim?

It was certainly the practice of my husband's family.  His mother tells
that in Egypt, what people used to do in the weeks before pesach was
gather at various houses, one day, one house, one day the next, and sit
there and check all their rice grain by grain.  The next day they would
go to a different house of a member of the group etc.

>>>(I anticipate that Mr. Raab might counter with something like, "So the
>rabbis can check the corn or rice, and then put it in a box with a
>hechsher, and there's no need to fear that the consumer will buy the
>wrong thing." -- But the Ashkenazi custom is the even the rabbis *don't*
>check the kitniyos for foreign grains.)<<
>But we still rely on the myriad hechsherim we see on all the processed
>foods we buy on pesach, and we do rely on the checking and control of
>the processes.

Note, that, as a data point, you can these days buy hechshered rice for
pesach for ochlei kitniot (ie some Sephardim) - from Paris, if from
nowhere else.


From: <kennethgmiller@...> (Akiva Miller)
Date: Thu, 12 Jun 2003 10:09:32 -0400
Subject: Re: Kitniyot

In MJ 39:75, Bernard Raab asked: <<< I am puzzled as to why this
stringency would apply only to Ashkenazim? >>>

I think you're misunderstanding the idea. This is *not* a rabbinic law
that was enforced on only a portion of the population. It is a *custom*
which the Ashkenazim took upon themselves voluntarily. (That was then.
Now, generations later, after Kitniyot has become an established custom,
today's Ashkenazim are not free to drop it. But this is the way many
customs work, and is not specific to Kitniyot.)

<<< And why can't we rely on the general nullification of minute
quantities of chametz which we rely on when we pronounce the "afra-d'ara
at the biur chametz? >>>

You're mixing two concepts: Nullification of minute quantities in a
mixture, and the nullification of chometz on Erev Pesach.

Nullification of minute quantities in a mixture works for chometz, but
only prior to Pesach, not on Pesach itself. Also, the chometz would have
to be absorbed into the other food in such a manner that it loses its
identity to the majority. For example, if a bread crumb fell and
dissolved into a pitcher of orange juice before Pesach, the juice would
technically be okay to drink. But if this happened *on* Pesach it would
not be.

(Lest one suggest that we can buy all our rice and corn before Pesach
and rely on the stray grains being nullified, there are several problems
with this. One is that this was not part of the way the whole custom
developed. The custom was to avoid kitniyot altogether, with no
distinction between before Pesach or during Pesach. In sharp contrast,
this idea *IS* recommended to people who cannot find certain essential
products with a Pesach hechsher, such a milk. The advice given to such
people is to buy enough regular milk prior to Pesach to last the whole
holiday. But this was never part of the kitniyot custom, and it's too
late now to add it.)

Nullification of chometz on Erev Pesach works, but is reversed if one
actually eats it. This principle is called "ach-sh'vay", meaning that
the practice of eating it gives the food a certain importance, and
restores the chometz status.

<<< Is this truly a general practice of sephardim? >>>

As Rabbanit Shoshana L. Boublil wrote in MJ 39:77, yes it is. Those
sefardim who eat rice, corn, or other kitniyot on Pesach do so only
after checking each grain individually to make sure no chometz is mixed

<<< But we still rely on the myriad hechsherim we see on all the
processed foods we buy on pesach, and we do rely on the checking and
control of the processes. >>>

To be honest, I don't know if this grain-by-grain checking is done on an
industrial level. I suspect that in lieu of such checking, perhaps the
sefardi hechsherim rely on other procedures, such as watching the corn
from when it is harvested, so that it is never in a place where other
grain might have a chance to get mixed in. That luxury is not available
to one who picks up a box of rice in the store and does not know whether
this rice had been in a "rice only" barn, or only which handles many
types of grain.

Akiva Miller


From: Art Werschulz <agw@...>
Date: Mon, 16 Jun 2003 11:58:16 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Kohein's liability for invalidating a qorban

Daf Yomi is currently doing Tractate Zevachim.  The tractate discusses
(among other things) the various things that a kohein can do, which
would have the effect of invalidating a qorban.  Some of these things
are actions, and some are (spoken) intentions.  For example, the kohein
can express an intention of eating the qorban after its permitted time
for eating, which renders the qorban piggul.

Suppose the kohein invalidates a qorban, thereby causing a loss to the
qorban's owner.  Is the kohein liable for such damage?  Does it matter
whether the damage is intentional or non-intentional, or whether the
damage is due to an action or an intention?

Art Werschulz
GCS/M (GAT): d? -p+ c++ l u+(-) e--- m* s n+ h f g+ w+ t++ r- y? 
Internet: <agw@...><a href="http://www.cs.columbia.edu/~agw/">WWW</a>
ATTnet:   Columbia U. (212) 939-7061, Fordham U. (212) 636-6325


From: Paul Serkin <paul@...>
Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2003 09:39:22 -0400
Subject: Kosher lo-carb snack bars?

Hershey's (OUD) now makes sugar free chocolates which are low carb due
to the use of sugar alcohols. These are usually available along with
regular candy

Carbolite chocolate bars (OUD on newer packages) are he same. They are
usually found in the drug section of supermarket/drug store along with
Atkins bars (not Kosher).

Good Luck


From: David and Toby Curwin <tobyndave@...>
Date: Fri, 13 Jun 2003 16:45:49 +0300
Subject: new mailing list - Israel-Food !

 -Looking to find a kosher version of that recipe you saw in a magazine?
 -An hour before Shabbat and you just ran out of one of the ingredients you
 need and you need an emergency substitute?
 -Like to share your aunt's wonderful recipe?
 -Having trouble finding a certain ingredient in Israel or don't even know
 what it's called in Hebrew?
 -Trying to find the perfect side dish for your Shabbat menu?
 -Need help with a certain cooking technique?

 A new list has been set up to discuss food in Israel - recipes, menus,
 ingredients, shopping, restaurants, etc. The orientation is towards Western
 immigrants, but other immigrants, native Israelis, Jews from outside of
 Israel and others are welcome.

 To subscribe, either send an email to:


 or go to:


 Looking forward to seeing you there!


From: Reuben Rudman <rudman@...>
Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2003 17:55:26 -0400
Subject: On The Calendar and  Astonomy

>I am looking for a clear explanation of the piece of Gemara in Berachos
> 58b at the bottom dealing with the constellations.
>The Soncino Edition suggests an article by Brodetsky in the Jewish
>Review of July 1909 but I haven't had an opportunity yet to go to a
>library that has that article.

I have in my possession a reprint of this article, actually what is
probably 2 articles.  This was distributed in 1979 by Kesser Torah, 1522
54th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11219, Tel. No., 718-851-9257.  I do not know
if Kesser Torah is still there and, since I am in Israel, I have not
been able to check it out.  Just remember, Soncino Berachot was
published in 1948, thiese articles are from 1909 and 1911 and much more
recent work has been done since then.

On another aspect of "astronomical" observations - we are now in the
middle of a two-month sequence wherein the numerical values of the
Jewish and secular months are the same for two conecutive months.  I got
to wondering how often this occurs and did some checking.  It can only
occur when the secular month has 30 days and coincides with a Jewish
month of 30 days, ie., a full month endng with two days Rosh Chodesh.
There are only 4 secular months with 30 days and September cannot meet
this condition as Tishrei never starst as early as Sept. 1 and Elul has
only 29 days.  So we are left with the followng pairs:

April/May  coinciding with Nissan/Iyar
June/July with Sivan/Tammuz    and
November/December with Cheshvan/Kislev

The last set is very rare as the both these Hebrew months can be 29 or
30 days.  In fact between 1900and 2050 it occurs only 3 times: 1902,
1978 and 2027.

April/May occurs 4 times in this time period: 1919, 1976, 1995 and 2014.

The current sequence June/July with Sivan /Tammuz occurs 5 times: from
1900 to 1964 it did not occur; since then we find: 1965, 1973, 1984,
2003, 2049.

Most of the spacings (for each set) occurs at multiples of 19 years and
if it misses by a day, then we lose it; in a few cases it appears in the
middle of a 19 year time inteval.  Of course, 19 years is the cycle of
recurring dates.

Mazal Tov to the Press Mishpacha.

Reuben Rudman


From: Paul Ginsburg <GinsburgP@...>
Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2003 12:47:51 -0400
Subject: pictures/illustrations to help understanding Mishnah Keilim?

I am currently learning Mishnah Keilim using the Kehati Mishnayos
series.  Does anyone know of a good reference with
illustrations/pictures to accompany this? (i.e. pictures of the
earthenware ovens, stoves, utensils, etc.  which are described in
Mishnah Keilim).  Sometimes it is very difficult to picture these things
merely by reading the text.

Thank you in advance for your assistance.
All the best,

Paul W. Ginsburg
Rockville, MD  


From: Eli Turkel <turkel@...>
Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2003 13:48:47 GMT
Subject: superstition

> I've heard of this one. Our Rov will not blow out candles as,
> apparently, the sound of the blowing creates "Mazikim" [damaging
> forces]. That's definitely not superstition.

Saying its not superstition doesn't mean it isn't.  Rambam definitely
wouldn't agree.  What makes something superstition or not?

Prof. Eli Turkel,  <turkel@...> on 06/17/2003
Department of Mathematics, Tel Aviv University


From: <michaelj@...>
Date: Wed, 18 Jun 2003 04:42:24 +0000
Subject: Travel to the Far East

The Star K website contains an article regarding the International Date Line, 
along with lots of other great articles, at the following page:


Also look on www.kashrut.com and www.kashrus.org.  The latter is the site of 
Asian-American Kashrus Services.

Nesiah tovah!


From: Harlan Braude <hbraude@...>
Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2003 08:50:35 -0400
Subject: RE: Umbrellas and New Gezerot

> There is clearly no purpose to a hat brim other than shading the eyes

It's handy when putting the hat on.


End of Volume 39 Issue 85