Examples of noise making items

Examples of noise making items that may not be used to intentionally make noise with on Shabbos:

  • Bell
  • Gragger; Ratchet
  • Whistle
  • Door Knocker

Q&A

May one ring bells or other instruments with an irregularity?[1]

No.[2]

 

May a child play with toys that make music or noise?

Some Poskim allow giving a child noise[3] making toys for the child to play with up until the age of 6.[4]

However according to Admur it is seemingly forbidden to allow a child who has reached the age of Chinuch to play with such objects even if the objects merely make noise and not music.[5] The age of Chinuch in this regard is defined as the age that the child can understand being told not to do something. Practically this is near the age of three.[6]  Furthermore, according to Admur, even a child below the age of Chinuch, such as a mere infant, may not be given any toy which is designated for making music[7] or noise[8].

 

May one make noise with a baby toy in order to lull a baby to sleep?

If the toy makes sounds of music then from the letter of the law this is forbidden to be done.[9] If the toy simply makes noise then in a time of need, such as a screaming child that cannot be comforted, one may use a toy specifically made for babies, such as a rattle, to lull the baby to sleep, if the toy simply makes noise and not music.[10]

 

May one move a Torah crown with bells on Shabbos?

Yes, even if this will make noise in the process.[11]

 

May one dress children in clothing that have bells?

No, as explained above in the Examples given from the Shulchan Aruch.

 

May one knock on the door with his key?

Yes.[12]

 

May one who is bedridden ring for a nurse using a mechanical bell?[13]

Yes.

 

May one drum on one’s table?

No, one may not do so either using his hands or a spoon and the like. Although if doing so in beat of a Niggun-see Halacha 3 Q&A.


[1] Biur Halacha 339 “Ulesapek Kelacher Yad”

[2] The allowance of an irregularity is only applicable to clapping and not to instruments. [ibid]

[3] In contrast to music, see next footnote.

[4] Beir Moshe 6/27; SSH”K 16/3. As the entire reason behind the noisemaking prohibition-in the opinion of M”B- is because of Uvdin Dechol, which is not so applicable by such toys. However according to Admur which rules the reason behind the prohibition is due to a decree one may come to fix the vessel, then it would seemingly be forbidden. Seemingly according to all it would be forbidden to give the child music making toys as it is forbidden due to a Rabbinical decree according to all. [So also concludes Piskeiy Teshuvos 338 footnote 2]

[5] So seems to be the opinion of Admur, as the reason behind the prohibition of intentionally making noise is because one may come to fix the item. Hence this is a typical Rabbinical prohibition which applies to all children above the age of Chinuch. However Tzaruch Iyun as noise making items are disputed if they are forbidden to be used even by adults and hence perhaps by children there is room to be more lenient.

[6] See Piskeiy Teshuvos 343

[7] 301/21 regarding giving a child clothing with bells to wear. This ruling is based on the understanding of Chikrei Halachos 4 p. 54, and other alternative explanations of this ruling. However according to the explanation of Hearos Ubiurim 831 p. 79 so long as the adult has no intent for the child to make noise with the object, such as the objects can be used in a different way to entertain the child, then giving him the object is allowed.

[8] Tzaruch Iyun regarding noise making objects as bells can be defined as an item which makes music, as well as that noise making items is a dispute if forbidden even by an adult.

[9] As rules Admur explicitly regarding shaking a bell for a child.

[10] Beir Moshe 6/27; SSH”K 16 footnote 11 in name of RSZ”A.

As there are opinions which allow even an adult to do so.

[11] This is permitted according to all opinions, even those [Taz] which dispute the ruling of M”A/Admur, as these bells make a minimal amount of noise and are placed merely for beauty. [Sheivet Haleivi 1/61]

[12] As it is not designated for this purpose. See M”B 338/4

[13] SSH”K 40/19; So is clearly evident from Admur 338/1 which allows even making musical notes through the drops of water for the sake of a bedridden person.

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