Unable to hear Megillah on Purim

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One who knows he will be unable to hear Megillah on Purim? [1]

One who will be traveling over Purim and does not have a Megillah to take with him is to read the Megillah on the 13th, 12th or 11th, without a blessing .[2] [It is to be read in the presence of ten people.[3] Some Poskim[4] rule that children can be included within these ten. It is questionable whether women are included within the Minyan.[5] The Megillah is to be read by both night and day.[6] However at the night reading it is not necessary to have Minyan present.[7]] If one is unable to hear the Megillah on these dates then some opinions[8] state he is to read the Megillah even starting from the beginning of the month of Adar[9], and so is the custom[10]. Nevertheless if a Megillah becomes available on the 14th, then he must repeat the reading [with a blessing[11]] even if he read the Megillah the day before on the 13th.[12]

The other Mitzvos:[13] The Sages were only lenient regarding the reading of the Megillah prior to Purim, however the other Mitzvos of the Purim feast, Mishloach Manos, Matanos Laevyonim, [and Al Hanissim] are to be performed on their proper date. [Nevertheless if one will not be able to perform these Mitzvos during his travels, then he should perform them before he leaves, on the day of his Megillah reading.[14]]


[1] 688/7

Other Opinions: There are Rishonim [Baal Haitur] that rule that in today’s times that the Bnei Kefarim never read the Megillah on the 13th, 12th or 11th then one may never read the Megillah prior to the 14th. [Tur brought in Biur Halacha “Yikrena”]

[2] Michaber ibid; If however a Megillah is available for him to travel with, then he must take it with him. [Beis Yosef in name of Rokeiach; M”B 668/19; Kaf Hachaim 688/51] The reason a blessing is not recited is because there are opinions [see above] that rule today one may never read the Megillah before the 14th. [Tur; Kaf Hachaim 688/51]

[3] The reason: As when the Megillah is read prior to its proper time it requires ten people for the sake of publicizing the miracle. [Kol Bo] However the Meiri rules that Bedieved one is Yotzei even if he reads it alone. [M”B 688/20]

[4] M”B 688/20

Other Opinions: Some Poskim question whether children may be included within the ten. [M”A 688/11 in name of Hagahos Ashri; Elya Raba 688/16; Kaf Hachaim 688/53]

[5] Kaf Hachaim 688/53

[6] M”B 688/20; Kisei Eliyahu 688/6; Kaf Hachaim 688/55; The Ran leaves this matter in question however from the Tur it is implied that they are to read also the night before. [M”B ibid]

[7] Shaar Hatziyon 688/33

[8] Yerushalmi first chapter of Megillah “The entire month is valid for reading Megillah”. However the Beis Yosef writes that according to the Bavli this does not apply. Therefore he records the ruling here as a “Yeish Omrim”. [Kaf Hachaim 688/52]

[9] Michaber 688/7; As the verse states “the month that turns over from sorrow to joy”. [M”B ibid 688/21]

[10] Rama ibid

[11] Taz 688/9; Peri Chadash; Levush 688/8; P”M 688 M”Z 9; Erech Hashulchan 688/9; M”B 688/22; Kaf Hachaim 68/58

What is the law if by mistake they recited a blessing on the reading prior to the 14th? The Birkeiy Yosef 688/16 questions whether he may repeat the blessing on the 14th. Practically it is best to hear the blessing from another in order to avoid the doubt. [Kaf Hachaim 688/57]

[12] Rama ibid; As the reading of the 13th was not its correct time. [ibid]

[13] M”B 688/20 in name of Yad Efraim

[14] Kaf Hachaim 688/54

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