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Why is it that most Ashkenazim that are not married do not put the Talis over their head?

  • 3
    HOw about why they dont wear a tallis at all? – SimchasTorah Oct 3 '10 at 5:09
  • 2
    That would be a seperate question. However even those that do wear a Talis prior to their wedding - or when a Bochur gets an Aliyah - they do not wear the Talis over their head. Why not? – Gershon Gold Oct 3 '10 at 14:52
  • related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/7724/759 – Double AA Feb 5 '12 at 20:13
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The minhag is sourced to the Talmud (Kiddushin 29b) that only married men would put the talis over their heads.

א"ל מאי טעמא לא פריסת סודרא א"ל דלא נסיבנא

Rashi: דלא פריס סודר - כדרך הנשואין שהיו רגילין לכסות ראשן

  • Yekkes derive from the same source that only a talmid chacham should cover his head, and from what I have heard, only during Amidah. – Noach MiFrankfurt Feb 17 '14 at 5:10
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so that woman who are looking to get married may see who is and is not married.

  • Koachyah, very funny! – d a Oct 5 '10 at 0:16
  • Nice bit of humor! – yydl Oct 5 '10 at 2:27

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