1. Squeezing cloths that have become wet

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This chapter deals with the laws of squeezing liquids out from cloth. Doing so in addition to containing the Mifarek prohibition as well contains at times the laundering prohibition. Regarding the laundering prohibition, only those laws that relate to squeezing out liquid from a cloth will be mentioned. There will IY”H be a separate section which will deal with the laundering laws in their full length.

1. Squeezing cloths that have become wet:[1]

The laundering prohibition: One who squeezes a cloth [which had absorbed clear/white liquids] until its liquids come out is considered as if he has laundered clothing and is thus liable for [the] whitening [prohibition].[2] However, if it had absorbed red wine or beer or other liquids which do not whiten, then there contains no laundering prohibition in squeezing out these liquids.[3]

The Mifarek prohibition: Even cloths which have been soaked in liquids which do not whiten [i.e. have been soaked in colored liquids], are forbidden to be squeezed.

The reason:[4] The reason for this restriction is due to the prohibition of “detaching” which is an offshoot of [the] threshing [prohibition] just as squeezing fruits is prohibited because of “detaching.”

If one does not need the liquid:[5] However, one is only liable on this squeezing if he needs the liquids being squeezed from the cloth, however if one does not need the liquids squeezed out from the cloth, and is only doing so in order to clean the cloth, then this is not similar to threshing at all, as by threshing one needs the grains that he is detaching from the stalks, and therefore this squeezing does not contain a Biblical prohibition but rather a Rabbinical.

Cloth designated for getting wet:[6] (There is no need to worry of the prohibition of whitening [in inserting/removing the pipe with the] flax residue and pieces of cloth which surrounds the pipe even if it is white wine which whitens, because [these cloths] are meant to get wet [and dirty] and one does not care to whiten it at all as was written in chapter 319 [Halacha 13] regarding a strainer).[7] Water or wine which are clear are permitted to be filtered through a filter in order so they become even more clear as since a strainer is made for this purpose of having liquids pass through it thus one does not care to squeeze [out the liquid which it absorbs] and as well does not care to whiten it at all, therefore its whitening does not pose a problem to prohibit soaking it in liquid due to this even according to those opinions which say that the soaking of a cloth is [considered] laundering it.[8]


Squeezing liquid out of a cloth:[9]

A. Biblically:

No need for the squeezed liquid: It is forbidden to squeeze a white liquid out of a cloth due to the laundering prohibition.

One needs the squeezed liquid: It is forbidden to squeeze even colored liquids out of a cloth due to the Mifareik/detaching prohibition.

B. Rabbinically:

It is forbidden to squeeze even a colored liquid out of a cloth even if one does not need the liquid.


[1] Admur 320:21

[2] Admur 301:56

[3] Admur 320:21; 301:59; 319:13; M”A 319:11; Taz 320:12; Rabbeinu Tam in Sefer Hayashar; Tosafus Beitza 30a; Kesubos 6a; Shabbos 111b; Rashba; Rivash; Rav Hamaggid; Implication of Michaber 320:18; Biur Halacha 320:18 “Yeish Mi Shematir”

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule there is no difference between water and other liquids, and one is Biblically liable for Milabein on the squeezing of all liquids. [Ran brought in Taz 320:12; Riy brought in Tosafus Shabbos ibid; Rambam 2:11; See Beis Yosef 320; Avnei Nezer 158:12; Biur Halacha ibid]

[4] Admur ibid; M”A 320:23; Riy; Mordechai; Ran

Other opinions: Some Rishonim rule there is no prohibition, even Rabbinically, if the liquid goes to waste. [Rashba brought in Maggid Mishneh; Rivash in opinion of Rabbeinu Tam; brought in Admur end of 320:24-we do not rule like this opinion]

[5] Admur ibid; Rabbeinu Tam Kesubos ibid; Beitza 30a

[6] Admur 320:21; See also Admur 319:13; Kuntrus Achron 302:1 in length

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule that even designated clothes contain a Milabein prohibition in getting them wet. [See M”A 302:27, as explained in Machatzis Hashekel ibid that “If not for the fact that it was Derech Lichluch, we would consider it forbidden due to Libun even though it is designated for this purpose”]

[7] Admur ibid parentheses in original

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule that the entire case here is referring to a barrel of red wine, as by water or white wine there is a prohibition of Milabein and all Poskim would agree that there is a Biblical prohibition even if the liquid is going to waste and one uses a handle to squeeze it. [M”B 320:55; Biur Halacha 320:18 “Yeish Mi Shematir”]

Is there a prohibition of Milabein involved in causing a Shemtah to squeeze its water while using it for cleaning? According to Admur it seems there is no prohibition while according to the M”B ibid it seems there is a prohibition.

[8] Admur 319:13

[9] Halacha 21

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