In Mas. Sh'kalim, 20A, the gemara discusses whether one can consume meat or cheese that he finds in a public space. One reason to allow it is because "רוב מהלכי דרכים" most of the travelers in those cases were Jewish so the item was not forbidden due to a concern that it was of non-Jewish origin.

Unlike a situation where one can count the number of butcher shops, the number of travelers is not static. I live in a relatively "Jewish" town and in a neighborhood with a large percentage of Jews, but the streets are public and people can walk (or drive) through to get to different places.

How, practically, can one determine if a road or large common area has a majority of Jewish travelers on it (on one day? over a year? what about tourist season when many non-Jews visit)? Does the road have to be a dead end so no one other than residents would walk/drive down it and one can count who lives on that block?

I'm not asking for a psak based on my address because roasted kid and cheese wheels are often spotted on my block; I am trying to understand the halachic mechanism.

  • Gemara Kesubos 15a discusses if you need a majority of the city or if you also need a majority of travelers at that time. It's an extensive sugya dealing with yuchsin and kashrus and the idea of 2 majorities etc. It seems that for kashrus you don't need to worry about transient travelers
    – Chatzkel
    Jul 27, 2021 at 18:36

1 Answer 1


I think you will find the mishna in shekalim 19a as a good starting point to answer your question. (The mishna discusses finding money in yerushalyim and is מחלק if you found it during a time when a majority of the money changing hands is from maaser sheini etc. and the mishna also says that har habayis differs since it wasn't swept up every day..)

As an aside we don't pasken like that gemara..

  • that gemara resolves by looking at proximity to a fixed location and (IIRC) a time, not relative to the percentage of people
    – rosends
    Jun 27, 2021 at 17:16

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