General laws of the Purim Feast

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General laws of the Purim feast: [1]

It is a Mitzvah to eat a lavish and festive meal on Purim.[2] This Mitzvah is a Biblical command, as rejoicing on Purim is from the words of Scripture which has the same power as the words of Torah.[3]

How many meals must be eaten to fulfill the Mitzvah? One fulfills his obligation through eating even a single meal on Purim day.[4]

Does one fulfill his obligation by having a meal on the night of Purim?[5] It is an obligation to eat one[6] festive meal on Purim during daytime. One does not fulfill his obligation with a meal eaten the previous night[7], and certainly not with a meal eaten on Motzei Purim.[8] This applies even by Purim Hameshulash in Yerushalayim in which case the meal must be eaten on Sunday and not on Motzei Shabbos.[9]

Adding in festivities also on the night of Purim?[10] Although one does not fulfill his obligation with a meal eaten the previous night[11], nevertheless also at night one is to rejoice and increase slightly in a festive meal.[12] This applies even when Purim falls on Motzei Shabbos, and one had a large meal for Shalosh Seudos.[13] Nevertheless, one should save the more festive delicacies for the main Purim meal which will take place the next day.[14] [One whose night meal extended into the morning of Purim fulfills his obligation if he ate food into the morning.[15] Some Poskim[16] rule that one is not to eat meat during the night meal[17], however this is not the accepted custom.[18] Practically each area is to follow his custom.[19] Many Poskim[20] rule one is to eat the accustomed Zaronim [grains and legumes] specifically on the night of Purim, after the fast.]

Learning prior to the meal:[21] Prior to commencing the meal, one should learn words of Torah [as this protects him from any damage that may occur to him during the meal[22]]. [It is proper to learn Mishnayos from Tractate Shekalim before the meal, and learn Mishnayos from Tractate Megillah after the meal.[23] Some Poskim[24] rule that one is required to study the laws of Purim on the day of Purim just as he is required to learn the laws of the festivals on the day of the festival.[25]]


 Sparks of Chassidus:

The joy of Purim surpasses that of any other holiday[26], as the Mesiras Nefesh expressed on Purim brought down a higher revelation than any other Yom Tov.[27]

 Niggun Daled Bavos:[28]

Purim is considered one of the auspicious days in which the Niggun Daled Bavos is allowed to be sung.

Niggun of the Shpoler Zeida:[29]

On many occasions during Purim the Rebbe would tell Chassidim to sing the Niggun of Hup Chazak. Likewise at times the Niggun Kol Bayaar was sung.



[1] 695/1-3

[2] Rama 695/1

The reason: As the verse states “Mishteh Vesimcha” [Levush 695]

Pushing off Torah learning: This meal is considered a Mitzvah and hence it even pushes off the Mitzvah of learning Torah, if one is using his time to prepare for the meal. [Bach 695 based on Gemara Megillah 7b, brought in Kaf Hachiam 695/2]

Commemorating the destruction: The Mor Uketzia writes there is no obligation to commemorate the destruction of the Temple during this meal as is normally required, as one is supposed to celebrate to the point of Ad Delo Yada. [Brought in Shaareiy Teshuvah 696; Kaf Hachaim 696/9]

[3] 696/7

[4] This comes to exclude the opinion that holds one is also obligated to have a feast on Purim night, just like the obligation to read Megillah by both day and night. [Kaf Hachaim 695/4]

[5] 695/1

[6] Rama 695/1

[7] Michaber ibid

The reason: As the verse states “days of festivity” that the obligation is by day and not night. [Levush 695]

[8] M”B 695/2

[9] Nemukei Orach Chaim 688; See Olas Shmuel 110

[10] 695/1

[11] This applies even by Purim Hameshulash in Yerushalayim. [Nemukei Orach Chaim 688]

[12] Rama ibid; One is to drink with great joy and rejoice his family distancing from then any fighting or strife. [Elya Raba 695/5 brought in Kaf Hachaim 695/12]

[13] M”B 695/3 based on M”A 695/1 brought in Kaf Hachaim 695/4

[14] M”B 695/3

[15] Bircheiy Yosef 696/2 brought in Shaareiy Teshuvah 696; Kaf Hachaim 696/8

[16] M”A 695/6 in name of Kol Bo; Levush 695; Brought in Shaar Hatziyon 695/12

[17] The reason: In order to emphasize that it is not the Purim Seuda, as otherwise people may mistakenly think one can fulfill the Seuda by night. [M”A ibid]

[18] Elya Raba 695/5; P”M 695 A”A 6; Kaf Hachaim 695/10

[19] Shaar Hatziyon 695/12

[20] M”A 695/6; M”B 695/11; Beis Yosef brought in Kaf Hachaim 695/25

[21] Rama ibid

[22] Darkei Moshe 695/3 brought in Kaf Hachaim 695/27

[23] Kaf Hachaim 695/26

[24] Tzitz Eliezer 17/1 based on Rabbeinu Yerucham Nesiv Shevi; brought in Piskeiy Teshuvos 429/1

[25] See Admur 429/2

[26] Torah Or Esther “Chayav Inish” 2

[27] Sefer Haminhagim p. 172

[28] Sefer Hasichos 1928 p. 12; Sefer Hasichos 1941 p. 85; Igros Kodesh 3 p. 382; Minhag of Rebbe brought in Otzer Minhagei Chabad 218-223

[29] Otzer Minhagei Chabad 224-225

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