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The majority opinion is that, when we had the tradition on techeilet (the wool-dyed-blue string on tzitzis), each corner of the garment would have 7 white strings and one techeilet string.

If I've heard correctly, Rambam has the interesting opinion that the 7 strings should match the color of the garment. Red tallis means 7 red strings and 1 techeilet string. (We don't follow the Rambam!)

But according to Rambam:

  • If the garment was entirely techeilet, would it get 8 strings of techeilet?
  • What if the garment was entirely kala ilan (indigo, the Gemara says it appears close enough to techeilet to fool people; it's also chemically identical to some of the techeilet formulations out there today)? 7 strings of pseduo-techeilet and one of real techeilet?
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There must be a lumdishe way to show that this is actually what Korach was asking. – Isaac Moses Dec 8 '10 at 17:19
Don't give the krum-bagel-bears video guy any ideas ... – Shalom Dec 8 '10 at 17:23
Maybe I did already. youtube.com/watch?v=2AAOoGWZZ7A – Isaac Moses Dec 8 '10 at 17:29
Who says we don't follow the RaMBa"M? chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/936342/jewish/… – Seth J Jun 21 '11 at 16:11
I believe Rav Nachum Rabinovitch of Maaleh Adumim also rules according to the Rambam on this one. – Loewian Apr 16 '15 at 0:49
up vote 5 down vote accepted

He says (Hil. Tzitzis 2:8) that in that case you can make the "white" strings any color except black, because that's too similar in color to techeles. (Kesef Mishneh there adds that according to this, using the actual color of techeles - whether the real stuff, or indigo - would also be no good.)

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He says any "dye" other than black; I assume leaving them white/natural is okay too? – Shalom Dec 8 '10 at 19:08
Yes, that's how R' Yaakov ibn Chaviv (cited in Kesef Mishneh here) understands the Rambam. – Alex Dec 8 '10 at 20:10

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