The Bavli, Shabbos 21b, discusses lighting the Chanuka lights out of doors; Rashi gives the reason for outdoor lighting as

משום פרסומי ניסא / for advertising the miracle.

Further down the amud, the Bavli discusses a storekeeper who lights the Chanuka lighs outside his store. He can do so, and is not liable if flammable materials come into contact with his lamp, Rashi explains,

שברשות פירסום מצוה הניחה שם / because he had placed it there on the authority of advertising a command (mitzva).

A command? Isn't placing the lights outside advertising the miracle? What does Rashi mean here by "advertising a command", and why does he say it?

  • He is publicizing to others that they should light their own Chanuka candles (it is his store, not his house). – Yishai May 19 '14 at 14:05
  • @Yishai, my chavrusa thought that may be it. Do you have a source, though, that says so? – msh210 May 19 '14 at 18:29
  • 2
    Cf. P'nei Y'hoshua (M'gilla 4a, ¶ discussing Tos. ibid. s.v. מאי איריא), who uses the term (vis-a-vis Purim) to refer to publicizing that Chazal instituted the holiday and its associated mitzva. He seems to carry this explanation into his discussion of the following Tosafos, contrasting the daytime reading (which essentially fulfills pirsumei nisa since the miracle happened during the day) with the nighttime reading (which merely publicizes that Chazal made the day special via mitzvos). – Fred May 19 '14 at 18:50
  • @msh210, that a store doesn't fulfill the Mitzvah? I could look if you need. That this is what Rashi is talking about? No. If I had that, I would have made it an answer. – Yishai May 19 '14 at 19:25
  • @Yishai, yeah, I meant the latter. Oh, well. – msh210 May 20 '14 at 1:24

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