If one needs to bury a body on tisha bav but there is a heat wave, should the person refrain from burying the body until after tisha bav as to not have to break the fast? Or does the mitzvah of מת מצווה take precedence over the fast?

  • What's the problem - the heat wave will make him thirsty? One who does a mitzvah isn't harmed, and anyway, one who will faint if he doesn't drink not only should but must drink. Tisha B'Av might be more serious than the other Rabbinic fasts, but it's not Yom Kippur.
    – DonielF
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 21:18
  • Besides thirsty, he won't have the strength to bury the body. The point of the question could be looked at theoretically as well. Practically speaking what's more important, fasting on tisha bav or burying a body (assuming you can bury it after tisha bav.) Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 22:54
  • There are other implications as well, e.g. to what extent is a "seudat havra'ah" essential. I suspect that there are responsa that deal with this problem since it must have cropped up in the last thousand or so years.
    – Epicentre
    Commented Aug 1, 2017 at 4:46
  • @epic seudat havraah is always optional. You can't eat your own food but you don't need to eat anyone else's if you don't want to
    – Double AA
    Commented Aug 1, 2017 at 16:01

1 Answer 1


The mitzva to bury a מת מצווה is from the Torah. As @DonielF says Tisha b'Av is not from the Torah. The Torah mitzva takes precedence.

If the people assisting at the burial are weak, they should follow the normal rules for 9th Av.


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