muktzah (MOOK-tzuh)


  • n. An object that it is forbidden to handle on the Sabbath and on certain holidays (generally because the object's primary purpose involves actions considered work and forbidden on those days).

Example Sentences

  • "Do you know if umbrellas are muktzah?"

  • "Tali, don't touch the dollhouse- you know it's muktza."

Languages of Origin

  • Textual Hebrew


  • מוקצה

    • Who Uses This

      • Orthodox: Jews who identify as Orthodox and observe halacha (Jewish law)


      • North America


      • The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001).
      • The Joys of Hebrew, by Lewis Glinert (New York, 1992).
      • Dictionary of Jewish Usage: A Popular Guide to the Use of Jewish Terms, by Sol Steinmetz (Lanham, MD, 2005).

      Alternative Spellings

      muktza, muktsa, muktsah


  • It includes but is not limited to an object whose primary purpose is work forbidden on the Sabbath, which can therefore not be handled -- for example, since writing is forbidden, a pen is muktzah. But anything else which has no proper use on the Sabbath is also deemed muktzah -- for example, a pebble.

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