Follow up (somewhat) to this Mi Yodeya question:

My recollection is that a number of commentaries explain that Esav was extremely respectful and loyal to his father. I would think that part of respecting his father would include mourning his father's death. If so, Esav's thought seems to say something like, "shortly my father's mourning period shall approach, and I will kill Ya'akov, then." rather than saying something like "I'll wait to kill him just after the mourning is complete."

Should we assume that Esav's loyalty and respect to his father immediately ended the day Yitzhak died?

  • 3
    Yitzchak won't see what's happening after he's dead and get upset.
    – Double AA
    Dec 1, 2016 at 18:10
  • 1
    The expression seems to be simply a reference to a general point in time. (The event of his father's death). He actually says "the days of mourning" not "day of". So he could easily mean to include waiting until the initial mourning period has ended. Dec 1, 2016 at 18:20
  • @DavidKenner Possible. But what made me think otherwise that he was referring to the start is that Esav uses the term, "It will approach". It seems to imply that he can't wait for his father to die so that he could kill Ya'akov immediately once the days of mourning begin.
    – DanF
    Dec 1, 2016 at 21:08
  • He saw the history where Kayin had killed Hevel but then Adam had a 3rd son who "inherited" and the line of Noach came from Seth. Therefore he reckoned if he waited then Yitzchak couldn't have more sons. But of course he didn't reckon for the fact that Yaakov would have many children and he'd have had to kill all of them as well as Yaakov himself.
    – CashCow
    Nov 14, 2017 at 11:52

1 Answer 1


The Kli Yakar explains: Yitschak blessed Aisov and said that should Yaakov not toil in Torah then Aisov shall have the reigns over Yaakov.

Aisov knew that in aveilut, Yaakov would not toil in his learning,since leHalacha an avel may not toil in learning being that Torah brings happiness to a person and therefore he shall seize the opportunity to have the upper hand over Yaakov and kill him.

I would like to add another explanation.

The Yaaros Devash in Derush 7' in the paragraph beginning with 'אבל דע כי מיתת הצדיק היא לתשובה' says that upon the death of a Tsaddik who his lifelong goal was to bring people up in their Avodat Hashem,the Tsaddik himself shall come down and bring the people strength to overcome their Yetser Ho'Rah.He will plant a new heart in them, a heart which longs to serve Hashem.

However, says the Yaaros Devash, in order for the Tsaddik to connect to you and thereby lift you, you shall need to start longing to do good on your own and then he shall gain permission to intercede on your behalf and be granted the power to lift you up with him.

How will that happen: By being Maspid (eulogizing) the Tsaddik, you are inspired to Teshuvah and to follow in his ways. In other words by crying over the Tsaddik you shall come to Teshuvah.

Now, according to the words of the Yaros Devash,i would like to explain; Aisov, with his will do rid himself of Yaakov,feared sitting Shivaah and crying after his father, knowing that he just might come to teshuva and be elevated to great heights and then killing Yaakov or anyone else for that matter will certainly be out of the picture.

Therefore he shall use the tactic of 'out of sight, out of mind' and ignoring the entire mourning he shall immediately turn to his goal, and kill Yaakov before anything good shall inspire him to Teshuvah.

In short aveilut was purposefully as any other day fearing that it will have an affect on him and he won't want to carry out his plan anymore.

  • 1
    It's Kli Yakar (or Kli Yekar according to my dikduk teacher). Kely looks like the should be pronounced kelly
    – robev
    Nov 16, 2017 at 13:56
  • 1
    @robev he.wikisource.org/wiki/…
    – Double AA
    Nov 19, 2017 at 20:36
  • In truth a shevah in the beginning of a word is a shevah nah and should be pronounced, therefore there should be an e' after the k' in kli. Nov 19, 2017 at 21:02

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