As mentioned in a previous question, the Shulkhan Aruch, O''C 551:18 writes:

צריך ליזהר מי"ז בתמוז עד ט' באב שלא לילך יחידי מד' שעות עד ט' שעות (משום שבהם קטב מרירי שולט) ; ולא יכו התלמידים בימים ההם.‏

From the Seventeenth of Tamuz until the Ninth of Av one needs to be careful not to walk alone from the fourth hour of the day until the ninth hour (because during these days [the demon] ketev meriri has control); and one should not beat students during those days.

Why would anyone beat their students to begin with? Can someone explain the rationale behind this halakha as it relates to the rest of the year? Does the halakha sanction corporal punishment in the classroom?

  • isnt there in masecheth barochoth(i think) where 1 amoro kept hitting another amoro for some reason i forgot, and i think they put their case to Shamuel(i think) and he said to stop hitting him...lol i know i am bad at remembering things from long long ago. Commented Jul 7, 2013 at 20:11
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    Would such sanctioning be surprising?
    – Double AA
    Commented Jul 7, 2013 at 20:19
  • @DoubleAA: Yes, I think for many people a Shulkhan Aruch about demons and beaters would be surprising, to say the least.
    – Aryeh
    Commented Jul 7, 2013 at 20:28
  • I referred to corporal punishment in the classroom (where you used the word 'sanction')
    – Double AA
    Commented Jul 7, 2013 at 20:46
  • The issue is not about being surprised. The question is if corporal punishment is permissible, and if so, trying to understand more about that.
    – Aryeh
    Commented Jul 7, 2013 at 21:38

1 Answer 1


See SA YD Siman 245:10, The teacher should not strike him (the student) harshly only lightly. Also see the Mishna (Makkos 8) and the Gemara on it (8b). Also see here and here.

  • Thanks, so that everyone understands the halakha, the SA you noted says: לא יכה אותו המלמד מכת אויב, מוסר אכזרי, לא בשוטים ולא במקל, אלא ברצועה קטנה. The teacher should not strike him an enemy's blow, as a cruel lesson, or with a whip or a cane, but only with a small strip.
    – Aryeh
    Commented Jul 8, 2013 at 7:04

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