Cleaning for Shabbos

Cleaning the house for Shabbos:[1]

One is to clean and tidy all matters of his house so that when he comes home from Shul the house is found clean and organized.[2] [The floors are to be swept and cleaned.[3] When cleaning the house for Shabbos one should mention that he is doing so in honor of Shabbos.[4]]

Removing cobwebs:[5] It is proper[6] for one to clear his house of cobwebs before Shabbos in order so one’s house is clean in honor of Shabbos.


Importance of cleaning the house for Shabbos:[7]

The Sages mentioned[8] that every person is escorted by two angels upon returning from Shul, one good and one evil. If the house is found tidy and prepared for Shabbos the evil angel is forced into blessing the home. If however the opposite is found then the good angel ends up giving the opposite of blessing.



When on Erev Shabbos is one to tidy the home?

Some Poskim[9] mention that the tidying of the house should be done close to Plag Hamincha, as opposed to the morning or too close to Shabbos.


May one remove cobwebs on Shabbos if he forgot to do so before Shabbos?

Cobwebs are considered Muktzah[10] and thus may only be removed using an irregularity.[11] If they have become repulsive to oneself or to guests in the room they may be removed even regularly.[12] Some Poskim[13] however rule that one is to avoid removing cobwebs at all on Shabbos, even with an irregularity due to suspicion that this may involve the destroying prohibition.[14]


Not to dirty one’s floor by the Shabbos meals:[15]

It is proper[16] to beware at the night and day meal from dirtying one’s floor by throwing food remnants onto it.[17] Rather one is to throw the remnants onto the tablecloth which is on the table and after the meal one is to shake it [into the garbage] or outside of the house. If however one is accustomed to sweep the floor, in a permitted way, after each meal[18], then it is allowed to throw the remnants onto the floor.


[1] 262/1

[2] As coming home to a clean and organized home is included within the honor of Shabbos. [ibid]

[3] Aruch Hashulchan 262/1

[4] Kaf Hachaim 262/19

[5] 262/2

[6] Lit. good

[7] Mishneh Berurah 262/3

[8] Shabbos 119b

[9] Shaareiy Teshuvah 262/1; Kaf Hachayim 262/20 in name of Bircheiy Yosef

[10] Tehila Ledavid 328/79

[11] Betzeil Hachachmah 5/18

[12] They may be removed even normally as then they are considered a Graf Shel Reiy. [SSH”K 23 footnote 34 in name of Rav SZ”A]

[13] Kaf Hachayim 328/270; SSH”K 23/9

[14] Betzeil Hachachmah ibid and Rav SZ”A ibid both argue that this prohibition does not at all apply.

[15] 262/2

[16] Lit. good. This is in contrast to the ruling of the Magen Avraham 262/1 which rules that it is forbidden to throw remnants on the floor if one does not plan on sweeping the floor immediately after the meal. Admur in Kuntrus Achron 1 proves that there is no prohibition involved and it is a mere matter of scrupulousness.

[17] The Darkei Moshe [brought in M”A 262/1] explains that the reason for this avoidance of dirtying the floor is due to that it may cause the escorting Shabbos angel to desire to leave the home.

[18] If however one only sweeps after the day meal, then one is to beware against dirtying the floor by the night meal. [ibid]

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