6. When is the Shofar to be blown?

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6. When is the Shofar to be blown?[1]

A. The days:

The first versus the second day:[2] The Shofar is blown on both the first and second day of Rosh Hashanah. Biblically, Rosh Hashanah is only on the first of Tishreiy, and hence one is only Biblically obligated to hear Shofar on the first day of Rosh Hashanah. However, Rabbinically, one is obligated to hear Shofar on the second day of Rosh Hashanah.

B. When on Rosh Hashanah-Daytime:

The Shofar may only be blown during the daytime of Rosh Hashanah.[3] The entire day is valid for blowing Shofar.

C. From what time in the day may one begin blowing Shofar?

After sunrise: One may blow Shofar beginning from sunrise. [Nonetheless, initially it is best to avoid blowing Shofar on behalf of oneself until after Shacharis, and when Davening without a Minyan, it is best to delay blowing it until after Sof Zeman Kerias Shema, as explained next. Nonetheless, when blowing for others on Mivtzaim, and when blowing for the sake of being able to eat before Shacharis if one is old or sick, then certainly one may even initially blow starting from sunrise.]

After Alos-before sunrise: If one blew before sunrise but after the beginning of dawn [Alos Hashachar] he has nevertheless fulfilled his obligation and is not required to hear Shofar a second time.[4] [Furthermore, in a time of need one may even initially be lenient.[5]] If one began blowing right before Alos and the sound continued past Alos, that sound is invalid. This applies even if it contained the minimum required sound from after Alos.[6]

D. When is the best time during the day to blow the Shofar:

Blowing before versus after Davening?[7] It is customary to blow the Shofar after Shacharis, and after the Torah reading.[8] [Thus, one should not blow Shofar on his behalf prior to Davening, unless he needs to do so for the sake of eating, if he is sick or old.]

Blowing within the first three hours of the day:[9] If one is blowing Shofar on Rosh Hashanah without a Minyan in order to fulfill the Mitzvah, he is to beware to delay the blowing of the Shofar until three hours have passed from the beginning of the day.[10] [This is commensurate to Sof Zeman Kerias Shema. Thus, one should not blow Shofar until after Sof Zerman Kerias Shema. Some Poskim[11] write that in today’s times it is proper not to blow the Shofar even with a Minyan until after three hours have passed. All the above however applies in a case that one will be able to blow or hear Shofar later on past the 3rd hour of the day. If, however, one may not have an opportunity to hear it later on, then certainly it may and should be blown prior to 3rd hour of the day. Accordingly, those doing Mivtza Shofar to merit as many Jews as possible in the Mitzvah may begin doing so from as early as sunrise. Likewise, those who need to eat before Shacharis due to medical reasons may blow the Shofar even within Zeman Kerias Shema for this purpose.]

E. Until what time may one blow Shofar?[12]

One may blow Shofar until Tzeis Hakochavim. [Regarding if a blessing is made when blowing past sunset-See Q&A]


One may blow Shofar from sunrise until Tzeis Hakochavim.



May one blow Shofar prior to Davening if he so chooses?

Initially, it is proper to fulfil the Mitzvah of Shofar at its correct time in Davening, together with the Minyan, and hence one should not blow beforehand unless necessary, as explained above. Another disadvantage of blowing before Shacharis is that initially one is not to blow Shofar within Zeman Kerias Shema, as explained above.


May one blow the Shofar past sunset?[13]

One may blow Shofar after sunset until nightfall. After nightfall it is forbidden to blow the Shofar. Seemingly, this applies likewise on the 2nd day of Rosh Hashanah, that one may blow until nightfall.[14]

Is a blessing recited? Some Poskim[15] rule a blessing is not to be recited when blowing Shofar between sunset and Tzeis. Other Poskim[16] rule that on the first day one may blow with a blessing between sunset and Tzeis. However, on the second day one must blow without a blessing.

May one blow Shofar past sunset until nightfall if the second day of Rosh Hashanah is Erev Shabbos?

Some[17] rule one may blow Shofar without a blessing.[18] Others[19] rule one may not blow the Shofar after sunset on Erev Shabbos.[20]

May one blow Shofar if he already accepted Shabbos on R”H that falls on Erev Shabbos?

If one accepted Shabbos early, prior to sunset, then it is permitted for him to blow Shofar without a blessing up until sunset.[21] If another person who did not yet accept Shabbos is able to blow the Shofar on his behalf then he may do so even with a blessing.[22] In a case that one who already accepted Shabbos is blowing he is not to blow more than three sets of Tashrat; Tashat; Tarat.[23] This means that he is to blow exactly three sets of each set and not anymore.[24]



[1] 588:1; Michaber 588:1

[2] Admur 585:6; See regarding the Biblical obligation: 585:6; 588:6; 592:3-4, 7; 595:1-2

[3] The reason: This is learned from the verse “Yom Teruah” that the Teruah must take place during the day and not night. [Admur ibid; Megillah 20b]

[4] The reason: Biblically, day begins from Alos Hashachar regarding all Halachic matters. Nevertheless, the Sages decreed that one must delay blowing the Shofar until after sunrise being that not all people are expert in the definition of Alos and hence in order to be assure that it is day one must wait until sunrise. [Admur ibid; Rashi Megillah ibid] In 488:3 Admur writes as follows: As it appears like night in the eyes of the masses.

[5] Kaf Hachaim 588:8 regarding one who is traveling based on Gemara Brachos 30a

[6] 587:4; 588:2

The reason: The reason for this is because every blow must be valid in its entirety, from beginning to end, for it to be considered a Kosher sound. Hence since in this case the sound only became valid in its middle, it therefore is not considered a Kosher sound. [587:4]

[7] Siddur Admur; Rambam Shofar 3:10; Maggid Mishneh ibid that so is custom in all world; Mentioned in Admur 584:9; Rama 590:9; Birkeiy Yosef 588:1; Machazik Bracha 588:1; Chaim Sheol 2 10:3 in name of Rashash; Shaareiy Teshuvah 588; Mateh Yehuda; Kisei Eliyahu 588:1; Ruach Chaim 588:1; Kaf Hachaim 588:5; M”E 585:1; See Likkutei Sichos 39 p. 43 footnote 1 that the novelty of Admur stating this in the Siddur is because he is hinting to the reason behind blowing the Shofar at this time which is to remember the sounds that were blown by Matan Torah.

Other Customs: Some have the custom to blow the Shofar before Shacharis as was the original custom [see next]. [Birkeiy Yosef 588:1; Mateh Yehuda; Kisei Eliyahu 588:1 write that this was the custom of their time although he negates the custom and says he would not hear the Shofar before Shacharis.

The original custom: The original custom was to blow the Shofar before Shacharis as Zerizin Makdimin Lemitzvos. However, this was nullified due to a decree of the gentile monarchy. [Gemara R”H 32b] Hence they would blow the Shofar during Musaf as by that time the government agents were no longer there to witness. [Rashi ibid] Others however explain that the Gemara means that this change was done due to danger as the gentiles thought that we blew the Shofar as a sign of waging war. It was thus changed to be blown during Musaf as the gentiles will simply think it is part of the regular prayers and not a vouch for war. [Tosafus 32b; Levush 585; Kaf Hachaim 585:5-0]

[8] The reason: In order to remember the sound of the Shofar of Matan Torah. [Likkutei Sichos ibid based on Rasag brought in Abudarham] Alternatively the reason is because based on Kabala the Tikkun of the Shofar is only to be done after Shacharis and the reading of the Torah. [Birkeiy Yosef ibid in name of Mekubalim]

[9] Admur 591:14; M”A 591:9; M”B 591:15; Kaf Hachaim 591:36

[10] The reason: The reason for this is because within the first three hours of the day G-D does not judge beyond the letter of the law, as during this time He learns His Torah which is called Truth [and thus judges people in accordance to Truth]. There is thus to worry that perhaps the supernal courts will investigate his actions and his prayers [Tekios] will be denied. However, after three hours into the day He judges the entire world and once He sees that the world cannot up stand to His judgment He therefore judges them in a manner of above the letter of the law, and the individuals prayer will not be differed. [ibid]

[11] Machazik Bracha 588:1; Mateh Efraim 588:2; Kaf Hachaim 588:6

[12] Admur ibid; Mishneh Megillah 20b; So also writes Admur 488:3 regarding Halel

[13] Admur 588:1; Chayeh Adam 141:1; Mishneh Berurah 588:1; Kaf Hachaim 588:2.

[14] So is implied from Stimas Haposkim brought above. However, Tzaruch Iyun as why do we not say Safek Derabanan Lehakeil, and hence there is no longer an obligation to blow by Bein Hashmashos which is questionably day/night. This would be similar to the ruling that on the 2nd day one who is in doubt as to whether he heard Shofar is not required to blow. However perhaps there is a difference if the doubt is in whether one already heard the actual blowing, or if one for certain did not hear the blowing but is in doubt if the Mitzvah still applies.

[15] Chayeh Adam 141:1; 144:20; Mishneh Berurah 588:1; Kaf Hachaim 588:2; 600:12; Regarding Lulav: M”A 658; Regarding Megillah: M”B 687:5; Kaf Hachaim 687:9; P”M 692 M”Z 3

[16] Michtam Ledavid 17; Birkeiy Yosef 600:5, brought in Kaf Hachaim 600:11

Opinion of Admur: Admur ibid rules that from Alos until Tzeis is the permitted time for blowing Shofar. So, writes Admur also regarding Halel in 488:3. The source of Admur is from the Gemara Megila 20b which states that until Tzeis Hakochavim it is considered day. This seems to imply that during Bein Hashmashos one may blow even with a blessing! This is further inferred from the change of wording from the Tur which writes simply “until night” while Admur specifies Tzeis. Vetzaruch Iyun Gadol, as Bein Hashmashos is questionable whether it is night or day as rules Admur is 261:1, hence how can one say a blessing at that time.

[17] Michtam Ledavid 17 [“certainly he is to blow”]; and so rule the following Poskim regarding reading the Megillah by Bein Hashmashos of Erev Shabbos: P”M 692 M”Z 3; Tzitz Hakodesh 55; Nitei Gavriel 31:10 footnote 15

[18] The reason: Although certainly one is exempt from the Mitzvah as it is a Safek Derabanan, nevertheless the Sages permit one to do Shvus in order to calm the person and remove anguish from his soul that he did not fulfill the Mitzvah. This is no different than the allowance to permit a woman to ask a gentile to light candles for her by Bein Hashmashos due to her anguish. [see 261:2; 263:11] Thus here too it is allowed, as he is no less than this woman as he desires to do a Mitzvah in order to relieve his anguish in which case the Sages allowed during Bein Hashmashos if the Melacha is only Rabbinical. [Michtam Ledavid ibid; Admur 342:1; 261:2] This allowance certainly should apply towards Shofar blowing which is not even a full Melacha but rather a mere Uvdin Dechol. [see Admur 588:4; 623:11 “not a Shvus Gamur”; 299:15; M”A 623:4; See also Michtam Ledavid ibid] One cannot however say that since Shofar is a Mitzvah and is merely a Shvus it thus is to be allowed, as is the rule with any Rabbinical prohibition which is allowed to be done for the sake of a Mitzvah during Bein Hashmashos, as perhaps we only allow a definite Mitzvah to be done by Bein Hashmashos. However, if it is a questionable Mitzvah then perhaps we do not allow it to be done. This especially applies here in this case where the Mitzvah of blowing Shofar on the second day is only Rabbinical, and hence it is a doubt in a Rabbinical Mitzvah. On the other hand if one understands Admur to rule that the Mitzvah applies until Tzeis, then it is still a definite Mitzvah by Bein Hashmashos, and thus is allowed to be done. Vetzaruch Iyun!

[19] Mateh Efraim 601:13; M”B 600:7; Kaf Hachaim 600:13; Implication of Taz 600:2 [He differentiates between accepting Shabbos before Bein Hashmashos and Bein Hashmashos itself, saying that Bein Hashmashos is more severe. Likewise, in the Teshuvah he always mentioned that the allowance is before sunset. However, see Admur 261:3 that accepting Shabbos is more severe than Bein Hashmashos regarding doing Rabbinical Melacha.]

[20] The reason: As the second day is only Rabbinical and we hence apply the rule of Safek Derabanan Lekula towards the Mitzvah. [M”B ibid] Hence there is no Mitzvah at all to blow and therefore there is no reason to permit it. However, see 261:2 that even a Yartzite candle may be lit by a gentile even though this does not involve a Mitzvah and hence the claim of the Poskim that permit it is valid. Another possible reason to forbid it is because it is known that the Sages forbade blowing Shofar on Shabbos Rosh Hashanah due to a decree that one may come to carry the Shofar [which is possibly a Biblical prohibition]. Hence perhaps by Bein Hashmashos the Sages likewise applied this decree. Furthermore, if when it is for certain a Mitzvah of Biblical nature the Sages decree that it not be done, then certainly when it is a Mitzvah of Rabbinical nature and a questionable one at that, the Sages would decree that it should not be done. On the otherhand, one can say that the Sages only made the decree to uproot the entire Mitzvah, however once the Mitzvah became active, as in our case on Friday then the decree no longer uproots it by Bein Hashmashos. Furthermore, if one says that Bein Hashmashos is night then there is no Mitzvah to blow Shofar in which case the Sages did not make a decree against carrying it. The decree against carrying it was only made when the Mitzvah applies. And if one says Bein Hashmashos is still day, then according to all one may still carry.

[21] Taz 600:2; Erech Hashulchan 600:2; Elya Raba 601; Ikarei Daat 30:24; M”E 601:13; Chayeh Adam 144:20; M”B 600:7

The reason: As one does not intend to accept Shabbos to the point that he can’t fulfill the Mitzvah of Shofar. Likewise if the Sages permit doing a Mitzvah during Bein Hashmashos then certainly they permit it before Bein Hashmashos, after he accepted Shabbos. However a blessing may not be made as this shows that he is doing so for the sake of the Mitzvah and it hence carries the decree of Raba that one should not blow Shofar for the Mitzvah on Shabbos. [Taz ibid; Vetzaruch Iyun as Admur rules in 261:3 that accepting Shabbos is more severe than Bein Hashmashos regarding doing Rabbinical Melacha; See Sefer Hachaim; Yalkut Gershoni 30; Mahrsham 3:333; Divrei Yisrael 165]

Other Opinions: Some Poskim rule that he may blow the Shofar even with a blessing. [Michtam Ledavid 17; Birkeiy Yosef 600:5, brought in Kaf Hachaim 600:11] Some Poskim rule one may not blow the Shofar all, even without a blessing. [Mor Uketzia 600; Hagahos Hatur brought in Kaf Hachaim 600:12]

[22] Mateh Efraim 601:13; M”B 600:7 in Shaareiy Tziyon 600:6; Kaf Hachaim 600:13

[23] M”E ibid; M”B ibid

[24] Kaf Hachaim 600:13

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