In light of the concerns discussed here, how much of the Four Cups are women required/advised to drink at the Passover seder?

At my last seder, I was told that women only need to have "a little" (a cheekful of) wine for each cup. I wasn't sure if the cup needed to be full, but we didn't have to finish it, or if it was sufficient to pour less than a revi'it of wine into the cup. I also don't know for a fact that this is correct advice.

Obviously[?], a good solution would have been to drink four full cups of grape juice, but it wasn't available.*

What should I do next time?


*Not so obvious--see discussion in answer.

  • 5
    The Shulchan Arukh just says women are obligated with no distinctions. Are you looking for a source which specifically says "they are obligated like men even though [concerns XYZ]?"
    – Double AA
    Commented Apr 27, 2016 at 15:29
  • Just asked another person (a relatively well-educated rebbetzin) this question. She said women just have to drink the majority of each cup; their drink doesn't have to contain much alcohol (I forget whether she said none or a nominal amount was enough); and they can fill part of the cup with a fruit
    – SAH
    Commented Jul 3, 2016 at 17:21
  • 1
    @SAH "She said women just have to drink the majority of each cup; their drink doesn't have to contain much alcohol" Those are the exact same rules as men. (I've never heard the fruit thing before. Just grapes, or any fruit?)
    – Double AA
    Commented Dec 8, 2016 at 2:40
  • @DoubleAA I think not just grapes. Interesting and makes sense that they are the same rules as for men.
    – SAH
    Commented Dec 14, 2016 at 6:09

1 Answer 1


The obligation for women to drink 4 cups like men from the Gemoro in Pesochim 108b.

ת"ר: הכל חייבין בארבעה כוסות הללו, אחד אנשים ואחד נשים

Reasons given are that although women are exempt from time-bound mitzvos, here women were also involved in the miracles. Further it was in their merit that we were redeemed and they also suffered the enslavement and were redeemed.

An extract from Rambam in Hilchos Deos 5 (5) says

וכל המשתכר, הרי זה חוטא ומגונה ומפסיד חכמתו

anyone who gets intoxicated is a sinner and loses his wisdom.

The suggestion for next time is to drink the minimum shiur of wine. There is a discussion of this (for diabetics) here.

CYLOR on these shiurim of course.

CUP REQUIREMENTS: The cup must hold at least a reviis of wine (3.8 fl. oz., or 112 ml). One Must drink at least 1.9 fl.oz. (56 ml) for each of the four cups.

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS: The lowest percentage of alcohol that may be used for the four cups is 4% (*). One should drink each of the four cups of wine within half a minute.

(*) I too thought grape juice was alright - CYLOR.

There is more there about diluting wine with grape juice and water to allow the wine to retain enough of its properties to qualify it being used for the four cups.

Micropedia Talmudis quotes sources that suggest that even someone who suffers as a result of drinking wine should make the effort to drink. The famous Gemoro 49b relates that Rabbi Yehudah had head pains from Pesach till Shavuos as a result of the 4 cups.

But if it would result in being so ill as to have to go to bed, then there are those who write that one is not obligated because this is not the way of free men. Similarly someone who hates wine and finds it objectionable is not obligated for the same reason.

And then there is an opinion that holds that even if the wine would make him ill (but not dangerously so), he is obliged to do the mitzva.

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