From one of the explanations of eating milky foods on Shavuos, we understand that it was not possible to do all the mitzvos connecting with preparing meat for food immediately after accepting the Torah.

Shechting an animal and skinning it are also stages in preparing tefillin. So do we have any sources that tell us how long after the Torah was given did the Jewish people start wearing tefillin?

  • Why is shechting part of making tefillin?
    – Double AA
    Sep 19, 2012 at 21:40
  • Diber ha-questioner behoveh
    – b a
    Sep 19, 2012 at 22:10
  • @ba But since Neveilah is kosher for Tefillin, then what is to stop them from making the Tefillin immediately?
    – Double AA
    Sep 19, 2012 at 22:23
  • See this piece by Rav M. M. Kasher where he quotes some Rishonim that the Jews only started wearing Tefillin when they got to Israel.
    – Double AA
    Sep 19, 2012 at 22:24
  • My point was that the more common case is to get tefilin from a shechted animal (as far as I know, though I'm not a sofer)
    – b a
    Sep 19, 2012 at 22:26

2 Answers 2


As specified in Shulchan Aruch, OC 32:12, t'filin can be made from an animal that died by any means, not just via kosher slaughter, so there would be no need for the Jews to wait for kosher-slaughtered animals after they got the Torah.

(This doesn't preclude their waiting for other reasons, which other answers may yet explore.)

A tip of the hat to Double AA for this answer. He posted it as a comment on the question, but it really is an answer. He's not posting it as such for whatever reason, so I'm doing so. But I'm posting it as a "community wiki" answer so I don't get the reputation points from it.

  • I had figured the question was still ok because I can't imagine any tefillin manufacturer making a full set in less than a day. So the question still held, if AvrohomYitzchok wanted to take it in a direction that isn't just formalized shechita, and to many other mitzvot. (Note that he hasn't been seen since posting this question.)
    – Double AA
    Sep 20, 2012 at 16:25
  • @DoubleAA Thank you for the above comment. My question was not limited to schechita. I meant to ask how long did it take to fit out Klal Yisrael with sufficient tefillin for everyone to fulfill the mitzva. Sep 21, 2012 at 15:57

Nezer HaTorah - Rabbi Reuvain Ravonisky mentions the Mechilta Parshas Beshalach 14 which according to him seems to indicate that the Jews wore Tefilin from the time they left Egypt.

He also mentions in the name of the Maharil Diskin (menyioned in Siddur Otzar HaTefilos) that when we say "Hoshana Yekorcha Imom Maavirin" this is proof that the Jews wore Tefilin out of Egypt.

He has a discussion from the Rashba how it was possible to have Tefilin with the 4 Parshios when they have not yet heard Shema and Vehoyo Im Shomoya. In addition there is a discussion as to how they were wearing Tefilin and it was Yom Tov? Please see the above link for further explanation.

  • See the link in my comments to the question for much more about tefillin in the midbar.
    – Double AA
    Sep 20, 2012 at 16:45

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