Intimacy on Yom Tov

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Yom Tov:[1]

Ideally, the night of Yom Tov is an auspicious time for intimacy. Even according to Kabbalah, it is permitted for a Torah scholar to have intercourse on the night of Yom Tov, even during the weekdays. [This does not mean that he is obligated to have intercourse on Yom Tov, rather simply that it is an auspicious time for intimacy, and therefore it is best for one to schedule his minimum required Onah for this night.[2]] Nonetheless, there exist certain Yomim Tovim during which intercourse is to be avoided, as listed in Chapter 4 Halacha 1.

Kohanim:[3] Many Kohanim are accustomed to not have intimacy with their wives on any night of Yom Tov in order to be able to perform Nesias Kapayim in purity. This, however, only applies if the Kohen goes to Mikveh on Erev Yom Tov and will not be going to Mikveh on Yom Tov. However, if the Kohen will be going to Mikveh the next day, on Yom Tov, or did not go to Mikveh even on Erev Yom Tov, then there is no need to abstain from intimacy on the night of Yom Tov [with exception to those days that are avoided, as explained above]. Likewise, if the night of Mikveh occurs on Yom Tov, then they are to be intimate with their wives regardless of the case. In all cases, when Yom Tov occurs on Shabbos the custom of the Kohanim is to be intimate with their wives and not to abstain from intercourse.


[1] M”A 240:3; Sha’ar Hamitzvos Bereishis; Shaar Hakavanos p. 3; Peri Eitz Chaim 16:1118:18; Beri Heiytiv 240:3; M”B 240:7; Kaf Hachaim 240:2; Piskeiy Teshuvos 240:4

[2] Sha’ar Hatziyon 240:3; Piskeiy Teshuvos ibid; Vetzaruch Iyun if it may be chosen in place of Friday night, or in addition to Friday night. Perhaps this matter is left to the discretion of the person and he may choose to do it instead of Friday night or in addition to.

[3] Admur 128:57; M”A 128:70

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