Shabbat Chazon

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The week before Tisha BeAv is called Shabbat Chazon. Its title is based on the first word of the Haftorah that is read that week (Yishayhu 1). It is the last of the three Haftorot with messages of rebuke of the prophets of the sins of the Jewish people and the destruction of the Bet Hamikdash that are read during the Three Weeks.

Wearing Shabbat Clothing, Freshly Laundered Clothing, New Clothing

Shabbat Clothing

  1. The minhag is to permit wearing Shabbat clothing on Shabbat Chazon. This is the practice of the Sephardim, Chasidim, and some Ashkenazim.[1] However, some Ashkenazim have the practice not to wear Shabbat clothing on Shabbat Chazon.[2]
  2. If Rosh Chodesh falls out on Friday and Tisha BeAv technically falls out next Shabbat, though it is delayed until Sunday, the Shabbat right after Rosh Chodesh doesn't have the status of Shabbat Chazon and one should wear Shabbat clothing according to everyone.[3]

Freshly Laundered Clothing

  1. It is permissible to wear freshly laundered shirt on Shabbat.[4]

New Clothing

  1. One shouldn't wear a new shirt on Shabbat Chazon unless one doesn't have any other laundered ones.[5] The same applies to wearing a new pair of pants, belt, shoes, or sheitel on Shabbat Chazon.[6]
  2. One may not wear a new suit that would require a Shehechiyanu on Shabbat Chazon.[7]
  3. It is permitted to wear the Shabbat clothing even from Chatzot of Friday.[8]

Preparing Non-Laundered Clothing

  1. Ideally a person should prepare in advance of the nine days clothing that are not freshly laundered to be worn every day until and including Tisha BeAv. The way to prepare the clothing is to wear the clothing for an hour or two and then change it and put it aside until the nine days.[9]
  2. If one didn't prepare enough non-laundered clothing, many hold that it is permitted to prepare one's clothing for the week on Shabbat Chazon by changing one's clothing a few times so that one has enough clothes to wear during the next week.[10] Others disagree.[11] Nonetheless, he shouldn't state that he is doing so to prepare for the next week; such a statement is a violation of hachana, preparing on Shabbat for afterwards.[12]

Taking a Shower before Shabbat Chazon

  1. On Friday before Shabbat Chazon some permit someone who always takes a shower on Friday to take a shower before Shabbat.[13] See
  2. If Tisha BeAv falls out on Shabbat and is pushed off until Sunday, according to Sephardim, it's proper not to take a hair cut the week prior to Shabbat Chazon. However, in regards to shaving, if one shaves regularly and it's difficult not to shave, one may shave during the week before Shabbat Chazon, especially if one is doing so for Kavod Shabbat. See sources on the Nine_Days#Taking_Haircuts_and_Shaving page.

Other Practices

  1. It is permissible and recommended to have the same foods and sing the same songs one does every other week on Shabbat Chazon and not detract from its honor because it is the Shabbat before Tisha BeAv.[14]

Sources

  1. Mishna Brurah 551:5 based the Gra writes that the minhag Vilna was to wear Shabbat clothing on Shabbat Chazon.
  2. Rama 551:3. Aruch Hashulchan 551:11 notes that the minhag Ashkenazim that he observed was to wear regular Shabbat clothing on Shabbat. He explained that the Rama only said that the minhag was not to wear Shabbat clothing if the weekday and Shababt clothing look similar except that it is slightly nicer. Therefore, it isn't obvious that if you're wearing your weekday clothing on Shabbat that it isn't Shabbat clothing. However, the minhag developed when it was common for Shabbat clothing to be very different than the weekday clothing and if someone wore weekday clothing on Shabbat it would be obvious that they were publicly mourning on Shabbat, which may not be done. Nonetheless, he says that since in his time the weekday clothing is similar to the Shabbat clothing they should revert to the Rama's minhag. Nitai Gavriel (Ben Hametzarim 1:45:1) writes that minhag Chasidim is like the minhag Sephardim to wear Shabbat clothing on Shabbat Chazon.
  3. Nitai Gavriel (Ben Hametzarim 1:45:2) citing Yad Efraim 551:20 and Shaar Hatziyun 551:46
  4. Rama O.C. 551:3, Mishna Brurah 551:6, Aruch Hashulchan 551:10
  5. Igrot Moshe OC 3:80, Nitai Gavriel (Ben Hametzarim 1:45:4). Pri Megadim 551:20 writes that it would be permitted to wear a new shirt on Shabbat Chazon. Biur Halacha 551:6 s.v. kelim agrees and compares it to wearing freshly laundered clothing on Shabbat Chazon which is permitted. However, Magen Avraham 551:6 and Mishna Brurah 551:9 state that wearing new clothing on Shabbat Chazon is forbidden. Igrot Moshe explains that the Pri Megadim and Biur Halacha are only talking about when one doesn't have any other laundered shirts, then it would be permitted to wear a new one. See shulchanaruchharav.com for more sources and description of this topic.
  6. Rav Baruch Rubanowitz on dinonline.com writes that a person shouldn't wear a new belt, shirt, pants, sheitel or shoes during the nine days and including Shabbat Chazon.
  7. Mishna Brurah 551:45 writes that even those who are lenient to make Shehecheyanu on Shabbat during the Three Weeks will agree to be strict on Shabbat Chazon not to wear new clothes (which has a special element of happiness that a new fruit doesn’t have). Sh”t Yechave Daat 1:37 and Torat HaMoadim 5:7 concurs to the opinion of Mishna Brurah.
  8. Nitai Gavriel (Ben Hametzarim 1:45:6)
  9. Kaf HaChayim on Shulchan Arukh, Orach Chayim 551:91, Betzel Hachachma 4:138
  10. Orchot Rabbenu (vol 2, p. 130) quoting the Steipler, Betzel Hachachma 4:138, Rav Hershel Schachter (Relevant Laws to the Nine Days)
  11. Kaf HaChayim on Shulchan Arukh, Orach Chayim 551:91 citing Ben Ish Chai Devarim n. 6 holds that one may not prepare several garments on Shabbat to be considered pre-worn. Rather one can switch one's clothing one's to freshly laundered clothing for Shabbat.
  12. Betzel Hachachma 4:138
  13. Rivevot Efraim 4:139 citing Rav Moshe (Rav Eider's Ben Hametzarim p. 13) and Rav Henkin (Approbation of Nechema Yosef)
  14. halachayomit citing Chida and Rav Ovadia Yosef (Chazon Ovadia Arba Taniyot p. 155)