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Why aren't tefillin worn Tishah b'Av in the morning?

by Rabbi Naftali Silberberg


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A mourner on the first day of shivah does not wear Tefillin (see Does a mourner wear tefillin?).

Based on this law, the famed Rabbi Meir of Rothenburg (1215-1293) writes that "it seems that one should not don tefillin on Tishah b'Av, just as the law is regarding the first day of mourning, for there is no more bitter day than [Tishah b'Av], an established day of crying for all generations."

His equally destinguished desciple, Rabbeinu Asher, disagrees, choosing to compare Tishah b'Av to the latter six days of shivah, when tefillin are worn.

Therefore, the common custom is to wear tefillin in the afternoon, when many of the Tishah b'Av mourning restrictions are lessened. (See Why are the mourning laws of Tishah b'Av relaxed after midday?)


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Mitzvot » Tefillin
Life Cycle » Bar/Bat Mitzvah » Tefillin

Black leather boxes containing small scrolls with passages of the Bible written on them. Every day, aside for Sabbath and Jewish holidays, the adult Jewish male is required to wrap the Tefillin--by means of black leather straps--around the weaker arm and atop the forehead.
The fifth month of the Jewish calendar, normally corresponding to July-August. The saddest month of the year due to the destruction of the Temples, and the many other tragedies which befell the Jews in this month.