Greeting People on Tisha b’Av


What is included in this prohibition?

  • One may not greet another person on Tisha b’Av.
  • One may not give or send a gift on Tisha b’Av.

Which greetings are forbidden?

One may not say “Shalom”, “Good morning”, and similar greetings.

May one respond to a greeting?

A person who is greeted may respond in a low tone, in order not to create offense. If possible, he should not respond but should explain to the other person that greetings are forbidden on Tisha b’Av.

How should one respond to a telephone call?

Instead of saying “hello”, one should say “yes”. One must remember that idle conversation is forbidden, and telephone calls should be made only for urgent needs. One may not conclude the call by saying “goodbye”.

May one nod the head as a form of greeting?

No.

May one wish a person mazel-tov?

This is permitted, since it is a blessing rather than a greeting.

May one shake hands when wishing mazel-tov?

This is also permitted.

May one inquire of another how he is feeling?

Yes.

May a traveler inform his family that he has arrived safely?

Yes.

Which type of gift may not be given?

All gifts are forbidden, even on the occasion of a bris, etc.

May one give charity to the poor?

Yes. Indeed, it is a great mitzvah to give charity on a fast day.

May one send food to a needy person for after the fast?

Yes.

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