The Maharil in his Tshusvos Chadashos ("New Responsa," mentioned here), writes (Siman 93) that the custom is not to give kabblah to shochtim who learned the laws shechita in German (translated materials).

Is this idea still practiced? Has a shochet been refused kabbalah because they learned the halachos in a different language, e.g. English?

  • I'll have to ask my rebbi about this one; I believe some of his students only use a translated, English שמלה חדשה, but I'm not certain of this. I personally prefer using the original whenever I learn something.
    – MTL
    Jan 3, 2015 at 23:59
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    There is an English Simlah Chadasha?
    – sam
    Jan 4, 2015 at 1:27
  • Some things are very hard to learn in its original,like Emunos vdeaos
    – sam
    Jan 4, 2015 at 1:28
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    The Simla Chadasha imposes some minimal level of learning. Is the idea that the person COULDN'T learn in Hebrew, or it so happens that he DIDN'T learn in Hebrew? The former might not qualify as learned enough (though nowadays, one who can only learn in English may have finished Shas, Chumash with Rashi and Ramban...) Jan 4, 2015 at 22:43
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    @hazoriz It's on Google Books here: books.google.com/…
    – MTL
    Jul 28, 2015 at 19:45

1 Answer 1


There are many rabbonim who won’t give kabbala to a Shochet that doesn’t show a strong grasp of the Hebrew terms and precise language of the text in Hebrew. Potential Shochetim have failed tests because they answered all the questions in English, even though the answers were correct. I’ve been teaching shechita for years and this is my experience with the students I’ve sent to be tested. (There was even one Rav who only wanted to see the student read and explain a random Halacha in the Shulchan Aruch as his test.)

  • meaning he needs to be able to learn inside, Gemara, Shulchan Aruch, etc. source?
    – mevaqesh
    Oct 8, 2017 at 14:15
  • The Shulchan Aruch says where?
    – mevaqesh
    Oct 8, 2017 at 14:16
  • I can’t find the source right now. I might have been mistaken as to it being from the Shulchan Aruch. I’ll try to find it and in the meanwhile I’ll edit my answer to exclude that part (as it wasn’t really a response to question asked, rather just to give context to the prevailing custom today) Oct 8, 2017 at 16:07
  • Adding sources for these practices (i.e. where did your Rabbeim get these practices from?) would greatly improve this answer.
    – DonielF
    Oct 8, 2017 at 16:50
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    The question was if there are rabbis today who won’t give kabala to someone who learned in English. Based on my experience the answer is yes, there are such rabbis. As to why they won’t, that’s not really the question, as the asker gave at least one reason himself in his question. Oct 8, 2017 at 17:12

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