Kitzur Shulchan Aruch, Siman 10, Sief 1

.(וְיֵשׁ לִמְשֹׁחַ הָרְצועוֹת תָּדִיר בְּשֻׁמָּן שֶׁיִּהְיוּ שְׁחוֹרִים (וְלֹא יִמְשְׁחֵם בְּשֻׁמָּן דָּג הַנִּקְרָא פִישְׁטְרָאן כִּי הוּא מִדָּג טָמֵא

It is advisable to frequently oil the straps with fat so that they will remain black. They should not be oiled with the oil of the fishtran fish since this oil comes from a non-kosher fish.

(Translation via ArtScroll)

What is the fishtran fish? I understand this might be closed as it concerns the translation of a word, but I just want to know what this fish is. Obviously the lesson we learn from the above is that the oil of any non-kosher animal may not be used to oil the straps of the tefillin.

  • Some Yiddish speakers called [spotted] trout "pistran(g)", but that too is kosher.
    – Oliver
    Oct 16, 2017 at 17:37
  • Artscroll doesn’t translate it?
    – DonielF
    Oct 16, 2017 at 20:03
  • 2
    Btw IMO this is entirely on-topic. The policy isn’t against translating words so much as against translating words irrelevant to a Jewish topic; this doesn’t fit they may description and should therefore be okay.
    – DonielF
    Oct 16, 2017 at 20:06
  • @DonielF - Nope, they do not. They just put fishtran there.
    – ezra
    Oct 16, 2017 at 20:23
  • 1
    @DonielF - Google translate doesn't do such a great job with Yiddish, but FWIW if you type "fischtran" into the German-English, it translates "fish oil".
    – ezra
    Oct 16, 2017 at 23:12

1 Answer 1


According to Uriel Weinreich, ‎Yivo Institute for Jewish Research - 1968 Yiddish English dictionary פִישְׁטְרָאן is cod liver oil.

Per Wikipedia cod liver oil is derived from liver of cod fish scientifically known as Gadidae. Gadidae is a non kosher fish per the OU

Not all “cods” are kosher; the non-kosher burbot mentioned above is classified as a “gadidae”, technically making it a cod.

Based on this I would venture to say that in the times of the Kitzur cod liver oil was only extracted from non kosher species and therefore the Kitzur classifies it as coming from a non kosher fish.

  • 1
    Interesting, as cod is a kosher species.
    – ezra
    Oct 16, 2017 at 16:35
  • 1
    GershonGold, once you added that additional information to your answer, it made it instantly better. Thanks.
    – ezra
    Oct 17, 2017 at 15:03
  • yi.wikipedia.org/wiki/…
    – ezra
    Nov 15, 2017 at 5:30

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