Whether or not Peter Pan was Jewish, it seems he could never become Chayiv to perform Mitzvahs. Being that a person requires Da'as to convert, could Peter Pan ever convert to Judaism if he never grows past 12 years of age? Or is Peter Pan forever stuck being Patur from Mitzvahs?

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  • His parents can convert him torahmusings.com/2009/01/child-conversions-ii (and who his parents are is a question for the version of the story one subscribes to). Other people can adopt him and convert him en.wikipedia.org/wiki/… . His obligations will be on the level of a child, as will his imitations hidabroot.com/article/75966/…
    – rosends
    Mar 3, 2020 at 11:47
  • The question sounds confusing. I don't follow the conversion angle, and it may be unneeded. Why not assume that Peter Pan is already Jewish?
    – DanF
    Mar 3, 2020 at 14:11
  • 2
    While we're at it, can we kill Tinkerbell as a witch?
    – DonielF
    Mar 3, 2020 at 16:11
  • Curious - How do you know the word is pronounced Patur and not Peter?
    – DanF
    Mar 3, 2020 at 16:12

3 Answers 3


Yes, פטור פן is patur from mitzvos.

  • 3
    But פן comes to indicate a לאו - he should be obligated in all positive mitzvos and only exempted from negatives!
    – DonielF
    Mar 3, 2020 at 16:11
  • 1
    +1 Finally A PTIJ 2020 entry that was amusing. It's been a bad batch this year.
    – user6591
    Mar 4, 2020 at 1:32

I'm afraid Peter Pan is still חייב in מצות. The law that a קטן is פטור from מצות is based only on age, regardless of actual physical maturity. An איילנות - a girl who never reaches physical maturity, still will become a גדולה eventually.1 Therefore, while Peter Pan never physically grows past 12, he will still be חייב in מצות after his בר מצוה.

And if you'll say that his name is פטור, so he must be פטור in מצות, well that may be true, but we apply the principle found in ש"ס of פטור אבל אסור; meaning that he is only פטור from punishment if he fails to do the מצות, but it is still אסור for him to do so.

  • But a boy is also a קטן until he has two pubic hairs, unless he's a סריס. Until we know which he is, we don't know if he's obligated at 13 or 35
    – b a
    Mar 5, 2020 at 12:11
  • @ba, Peter Pan was released in 1953.
    – Rafael
    Mar 6, 2020 at 3:36

The halacha is that if a child does not ever develop zmanim, they become a gadol after 20 years. Presumably that would apply to Peter Pan as well.

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