Rav Wosner: May A Litvak Wear A Shtreimel For Davening On Purim?


As we all know, Purim is a time when people – even adults – dress up. Thus, a Litvak might wear a shtreimel if he so chooses in the Purim spirit. The halacha clearly states (Orach Chaim 91), though, that one must daven in the manner in which one appears before important people. Thus, Rav Shmuel Halevi Wosner zt”l, renowned senior posek, rosh yeshiva of Yeshiva Chachmei Lubin and author of the multi-volume Shevet Halevi, was asked (Shevet Halevi 10:18:1) if it is permitted to daven Minchah or Maariv on Purim while wearing a Purim get-up.

Revach.net records Rav Wosner’s response. Rav Wosner says that the exterior garments of a person are not what the halacha is concerned about. Standing in front of important people refers to one’s demeanor and attitude. It refers to the way one stands before the King of all kings. Thus, in this case, if one is davening with respect and seriousness and in accordance with the halacha, and one’s head is covered k’halacha, then, says Rav Wosner, it doesn’t make a difference what kind of hat or clothing one is wearing.

{Matzav.com Israel News Bureau}


  1. Foolish article! The questian would be about wearing clown hair or something funny. A shtreimel is a serious beged, the fact that you choose to only wear it once a year makes no difference. There is no shayla bichlall.

  2. #2, it’s not a stupid article at all. You can derive a message from this psak that wearing a clown get up during davening is against Halacha.

  3. I think it depends on what a person’s intentions are in wearing the shtreimel. If he wears an obviously wrong sized, or oddly colored shtreimel, it’s poking fun of it. If he’s dressing up seriously, then it’s serious. Hard to put into words, I hope I made myself clear.

  4. Response to Purim- No it isnt. The psak as recorded says “it doesn’t make a difference what kind of hat or clothing one is wearing.” This includes anything and presumably any day of the year.

  5. The real question should be, Is one allowed to daven with an animal mascarade costume or some unserious costume. Would you go to the president or queen of England on Purim with such a costume. A shtreimel is a serious levush.