7

Can I write a ketubah in English or possibly in Hebrew? Or must it be in Aramaic? The problem is that my friends and I do not speak Aramaic any longer. Our Babylonian-Jewish ancestors did, but we no longer have the minhag to speak Aramaic as our native language, nor do we even understand what most of it even means.

  • 3
    Why is that a problem? Do you need to understand it that readily? I have to hire specialized lawyers to handle most legal documents that I sign. – Double AA Jun 10 '12 at 22:19
  • 2
    Note that this is hardly a new issue nowadays; in Geonic times and later, few people spoke Aramaic either (which is why the later Geonim and early Rishonim wrote a lot of their works in Arabic). – Alex Jun 11 '12 at 0:42
  • Well, I was at a wedding last week, and when the Mesader Kiddushin finished reading the Ketubah, he asked the Chattan if he understood everything, and he said yes immediately even without thinking about it. So it made me wonder if the question of mitzvot tzrichin kavana, o lo applies here. – Adam Mosheh Jun 11 '12 at 0:44
  • i've usually seen ketubot written in Aramaic and $LOCAL_LANGUAGE. So ketubot with either Aramaic + Hebrew or Aramaic + English or in one case, Aramaic + Klingon. – Charles Koppelman Jun 11 '12 at 15:58
  • 1
    I just found something that can answer your question (Emes LeYaakov, Avos 1:1): Aramaic is used as a remembrance that we are still in galus. – b a Jun 16 '12 at 0:23
1

This is a great question which surprisingly doesn't return a clear answer via a Google search, so submitted this question to the wonderful Talmidei Chachamim of the Kollel Iyun HaDaf.

To which they replied:

enter image description here

Ie while by the strict letter of the law you technically "may" be able to write a ketubah in a non-Aramaic language... this is definitely not something which is advisable.

(R' Binyamin Adler's "Nisuin K'Hilchasam" ⬅️ sefer.org.il link)

  • 1
    Interesting. Thanks! – Adam Mosheh Jun 3 at 5:27

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .