Is metzitzah b'peh of biblical origin or was it instituted by the rabbis? What is the source for this practice?

  • Is your first question a duplicate of the second part of judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/18085/…
    – Double AA
    Sep 27 '12 at 18:34
  • 1
    @DoubleAA I don't think so, I read that question as 'is metzitzah b'peh an essential component of a kosher bris milah or can/should it be avoided due to health concerns'. My intention is, irrespective of whether it should be done or not, where does the notion come from in the first place.
    – user1668
    Sep 27 '12 at 20:29

The earliest source would seem to be the Mishna Shabbat 19:2. It is brought in the Rambam (Milah 2:2) and the Shulchan Aruch (YD 264:3) as well.

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    Where does it say anything there about "b'peh"? And that Mishnah isn't listing requirements, it's just saying what may be done on Shabbos. (Nobody says that there is an obligation to use cumin, for example, even though it appears in the same list.)
    – Dave
    Sep 27 '12 at 19:36
  • @Dave, see comments to the question. The question was not whether MBP is a requirement, that is a different quesstion; it's what the source is for MBP
    – Michoel
    Sep 27 '12 at 21:51
  • @Dave 1) How else does one למצוץ? and 2) That's an excellent question on those who still require metzitza befeh.
    – Double AA
    Sep 27 '12 at 22:14
  • @DoubleAA 1) you could use a piece of cloth, or a syringe-type device. You'll say, come on, of course they did it by mouth! So then you've created a tautology: What is a source that they did MbP? Because they did Metzitza, and of course it was b'peh!
    – Dave
    Sep 28 '12 at 2:15
  • @DoubleAA 2) I don't think it's a question at all, as the source for this chiyuv is probably not from the Mishnah, but from the Gemara's statement that אומנא דלא מייץ מעבירין ליה.
    – Dave
    Sep 28 '12 at 2:17

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