Customs for Tisha B'av


Tisha B'av on Shabbos

Tisha B'av on Shabbos 002


Afternoon of the Eight of Av


Study of Torah brings joy, therefore, we are restricted in what subjects of Torah we may study on the 9th of Av. These restrictions begin with midday of 8 of Av. (When 9th of Av falls on Shabbos, restrictions begin on Shabbos at midday)


Some of the items we may study: Book of Iyov, Book of Yirmiyahu, Midrash on Eicha, section in Talmud: Tractate Gittin, Perek “Hanizakin” - dealing with the destruction of the Beis Hamikdash (pp. 55b-58a), etc. 


Chitas, (Chumash, Tehillim and Tanya), one should try to complete before midday on the 8th of Av. (When 9th of Av falls on Shabbos, before midday on Shabbos.)  If one did not manage to finish chitas before midday, he can study until sunset.


The daily Rambam study should be done before midday on 8th of Av, and after the 9th  of Av and. (When 9th of Av falls on Shabbos, before midday on Shabbos)


The study of the laws of Beis Habechirah should be done on the 8th of Av, before midday, but could be completed until sunset like Chitas.


Tishah b’Av (9th of Av) is called a festival, and we do not say Tachanun beginning with the afternoon on the 8th of Av. (When 9th of Av falls on Shabbos, after midday on Shabbos)




Seudah Hamafsekes
(Please note: No special rules for Seudah Hamafsekes when 9th of Av falls on Shabbos. Just make sure to finish eating and drinking before Shkiah, i.e. sunset)


Regular meal is eaten before Mincha. Then we daven Mincha.

The final meal before the fast is called the סעודה המפסקת - Seudah Hamafsekes - “meal that separates (between a regular day and a fast).”  

This meal has special rules.


We wash and eat bread.


We sit on the ground on a cloth or on a low stool, like during shiva.


It is permissible to wear leather shoes during סעודה המפסקת.


In Seudah Hamafsekes one may not eat two different types of food.


Fruit and cheese are not considered two kinds.


Alcoholic beverages are not allowed. Coffee or tea are OK.


Three men should not eat Seudah Hamafsekes together, to avoid having to make the birchas hazimun.


Fast begins at sunset.


At the end of this meal one should eat an egg with hard bread dipped in ashes.


Some have the custom to eat egg after meal.




Night of Tishah b’Av


We may not wear leather shoes during all of Tishah b’Av starting with sunset.


Towards evening remove leather shoes. Non-leather shoes are fine.


Remove Poroiches (curtain before the Holy Ark) and the covers of Bimah and Amud in Shul. Only use minimal amount of lighting needed for davening.


After Amidah and Kaddish for Mariv, we sit on a low stool and we recite Eicha.


The one leading Eicha raises his voice at each of the four chapters.


The last verses of השיבנו  are said out loud by the congregation.


It is not our custom to throw berelach (heads of teasel) etc. See Sefer Haminhagim.


After Eicha we say V’Atah Kadosh, Kaddish without Tiskabel, Aleinu, Kaddish Yatom, special mishnayos and Kaddish d'Rabbanan


A mourner during shivah is allowed to come to shul during Tishah b’Av, both night and day.


One should not waste time on Tishah b’Av, but rather study the sections of Torah that are permissible.


The Rebbe Rashab would learn every Tishah b’Av Midrash Eicha and the story of Kamtza bar Kamtza from the Talmud (Tractate Gittin, chapter 5 - “Hanizakin”.)


The Rebbe said that it is ok to make a Siyum on Tishah b’Av on the tractate Moed Katan, since it is ok to study Moed Katan on Tishah b’Av.


The mishnayos learned for a Yahrtzeit on Tishah b’Av are either Mishanh in Moed Katan or other items permitted to study during Tishah b’Av.


After midday of Tishah b’Av, you can say the regular mishnayos.


Our tradition is to sleep on one pillow instead of two (or without a pillow) on the night of Tisha b'Av.




Day of Tisha b'Av


In the morning we wash only the fingers, since this is sufficient for the Mitzvah of Netilat Yadayim. We do not wash the whole hand since that would be pleasurable. The Rebbe explains that during Yom Kippur and Tisha b’Av the tumah does not spread more than to the fingers.


Wipe your eyes with the water, left over on your fingers after the washing. 


In the morning blessings we do not say the blessing of “She'asa li kol tzarki” since we do not wear leather shoes.


We don’t wear Tallis and Tefillin for Schacharis.


We do not hold on  to the Tztizis during Baruch Sheomar etc.


(The Rebbe Rashab did put on Tallis and Tefillin in the morning in private.)


During the repetition of the Amida, the Chazan says an additional beracha “Aneinu” - as is done on all fast days.


If the chazzan forgot "Aneinu", he should say it in “Sh’ma Koleinu”, or after “Sim Shalom”.


No Birchas Kohanim in the morning.


After Amidah we say half Kaddish


We read from Torah section “Ki solid bonim” in portion “Vo’eschanan” (Devarim 4:25-40).


After third Aliyah - half Kaddish. The third person called up to the Torah, recites  the Haftora “Asof asifeim” (Yirmiyahu 8:13-9:23).


Then we say “Yehallu...” and return the Sefer Torah to the Ark.


Say the entire Kinos.


After Kinos say “Ashrei” and “Uvo LeTzion”. We skip the verse “Va’ani zos brisi”.
Then the chazan says Kaddish Shalem without Tiskabel.
Aleynu and Kaddish Yasom.


The Shir Shel Yom and “Ein Kelokeinu” are recited before mincha.


Everyone individually should recite the Eicha


On Tishah b’Av we don’t greet one another. If someone does greet you, and may be offended if you don’t respond to their greeting, then you may nod softly.


Daily Tehillim, Chumash and Tanya (Chitas) and Laws of Beis Habechirah are all done after midday - before mincha. Daily Rambam - after Tzeis Hakochovim. 


Before midday no work that would divert your mind from the fast may be performed.


Before midday we don’t prepare for the night meal, and we don’t sit on regular chairs. After midday you can sit on regular chairs.


The previous Rebbe did not visit cemetery on Tishah b’Av.




Mincha Tisha B'av


Mincha is scheduled for late afternoon.


Give the value of what you saved on your food bill (because of fasting) for tzedakah before Minchah.


Before Mincha:


1. Put on Tallis and Tefillin.

2. Recite the following:

  • All three portions of the Shema.

  • Shir Shel Yom.

  • Ein Kelokeinu.

  • Chitas

  • Laws of Beis Habechirah (for those who studied Beis Habechirah every day of the nine days)


Daven Mincha in Rashi Tefillin.


Order for Michah: 

  • “Ashrei”

  • Half Kaddish.

  • Read Torah portion "Vayechal" for a fast day, followed by haftorah.

  • No Kaddish after Torah reading by Mincha

  • Return the Torah to the Ark

  • Half Kaddish before the Amida

  • In the silent amidah say “Nacheim” in the blessing of “Bonei Yerushalayim”.

  • Say "Aneinu" in "Shomea Tefilah".


  • In repetition of the amida the chazzan says a special blessing for “Aneinu”.

  • The chazzan says "Nachem" in “Bonei Yerushalayim”.

  • Chazzan recites Birchas Kohanim.


  • Kaddish Tiskabel

  • Aleinu

  • Kaddish Yasom

  • Regular mishnayos

  • Kaddish d'Rabbanan


After Mincha put on Tefillin of Rabbeinu Tam.


Fast concludes with Tzeis Hakochavim.


After Tishah b’Av wash your hands fully, as usual in the morning, without beracha.


Put on your shoes, wash your face and sanctify the moon (Kiddush Levana).


At night time no meat and wine are permitted.


We do say Vidui in the Shema before retiring at night.


We do not say a blessing Shehecheyanu (e.g. on a new fruit) until after midday of the 10th of Av.


One needs to wait until midday on the 10th Av to wash clothing or to take a haircut.

(When 9th of Av falls on Shabbos, both can be done after the fast is over.)