To how many paupers

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To how many paupers must one give a present? [1]

One is obligated to give at least[2] two presents to two poor people, one present to each pauper. [The above is only from the letter of the law, as in truth it is a Mitzvah to give more than the minimum amount mentioned in the above obligation.[3] It is a greater Mitzvah to increase in giving Matanos Laevyonim than to increase in Mishloach Manos.[4]]


If one sent Mishloach Manos to a pauper does he also fulfill the Mitzvah of Matanos Laevyonim?

Some Poskim[5] leave this matter in question. Practically one is not to fulfill his Mitzvah of Matanos Laevyonim through giving Mishloach Manos to a pauper, and hence one is to give Matanos Laevyonim to two paupers in addition to Mishloach Manos.[6] It is questionable whether one may fulfill his Mitzvah of Mishloach Manos with the same pauper that he gave Matanos Laevyonim.[7]


[1] Michaber 694/1

[2] So writes Michaber ibid. This is coming to teach that it is best to give charity to more than two people, as will be explained next, and at the very least it should not be given to less than two people. [Shulchan Gavoah 694/1]

[3] Shulchan Gavoa 694/1; M”B 694/3; This is the reason it says Matanos Laevyonim in plural, to teach that the more people one sends to the more praiseworthy. [ibid]

[4] Rambam Chapter 2 Hilchos Megillah Halacha 17; Elya Raba 694/6; Chayeh Adam 155/29; M”B 694/3

[5] Tureiy Even brought in Biur Halacha 695 “Oa”

[6] Gr”a; Bach on Megillah 7b which omit the word “Umatanos Laevyonim”; Rabbeinu Chananeil; Mahray Asad 207; Kesav Sofer 139

The reason: As one may not perform Mitzvos “Chavilos Chavilos”

[7] See Piskeiy Teshuvos 695 footnote 98 based on Turei Even ibid


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1 Comment

  1. Michael

    Does one need to investigate if the person with whom one desires to fulfill the mitzvah of matanos le’evyonim is truly a pauper, as if he is not, then one will not fulfill the mitzvah?

    Or does one fulfill the mitzvah by giving to any person who requests charity, even if in reality that person is not a pauper?

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