Is the literal translation of the phrase הכנסת כלה, 'bringing in the bride'?

If this is correct, where are we bringing her in from, by whom and for what?

  • 2
    Bring her into marriage - where she comes from may not be very relevant
    – Dr. Shmuel
    Commented Mar 6, 2019 at 22:28
  • הכנסת is an adjectival form of the noun הַכנָסָה which means "bringing in" or "intake". So the full term means - "intake of the bride". @Dr.Shmuel summarized the idea well. I.e., the groom is bringing her into marriage, or bringing her into his home / family as his wife. And, as mentioned when we talk about "intake", we're not really concerned about where she comes from. I think this notion would apply to any type of .הַכנָסָה. (Compare that a synagogue is called a bet Knesset - "house of gathering" - it's a place where people gather to pray. We don't care where they came from.)
    – DanF
    Commented Mar 6, 2019 at 22:38
  • I edited the question a little, as you can't translate a phrase if you don't truly understand what it is.
    – Al Berko
    Commented Mar 7, 2019 at 8:59

2 Answers 2


It is from the Hifil of the verb כנס and has different meanings depending upon where it is used.

In this context, it means to lead the Kallah as escorts, like is used in Shemot Rabbah 20:14 which says:

כָּךְ אָמַר הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא אִם אֲנִי מַכְנִיסָן עַכְשָׁיו לָאָרֶץ אֵין בָּהּ חֵלֶק לִשְׁנֵים עָשָׂר שְׁבָטִים

  • Very good. I hadn't considered that nuance in its meaning.
    – DanF
    Commented Mar 6, 2019 at 22:58
  • similar to hahnosas serfer torah
    – hazoriz
    Commented Mar 31, 2019 at 21:00

According to the Shach (YD 360:1) the main הכנסת כלה, 'bringing in the bride', is bringing in the bride to the "chuppah"; accompanying the bride as she is led to the wedding ceremony.

Rashi (Sukkah 49b, s.v. Hotzo'as) extends הכנסת כלה, to providing financial support to needy brides, so that they can enter marriage in a dignified manner.

  • 1
    Indeed dozens of times in the Talmud that is the object of the phrase נכנסה לחופה
    – Double AA
    Commented Mar 7, 2019 at 14:21
  • For example, Kesubos 8b אמר רב חנן בר רב, הכל יודעין כלה למה נכנסה לחופה, אלא כל המנבל פיו ומוציא דבר נבלה מפיו, אפילו נחתם לו גזר דינו של שבעים שנה לטובה, נהפך עליו לרעה Commented Mar 7, 2019 at 14:35

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