And discard her captive’s garb. She shall spend a month’s time in your house lamenting her father and mother; after that you may come to her and possess her, and she shall be your wife.
In ancient times, women would wear their finest clothing during wartime, in order to lure their captors.
The captive woman would mourn her parents whether or not they were alive. Hence, the mourning either reflected the fact that she is now separated from her parents or because they actually died.
From here we also learn that there is an obligation to honor one’s parents even after they die.
The captive woman was only required to go through these mourning rituals if she hesitated to accept the Torah upon herself. However, if she is willing to accept the Torah, none of this was required.
If the captive woman wishes to convert, she may do so, but she must then wait another two months before she may get married.If the captive woman does not want to convert, she is given 12 months to think about it. If she still does not want to convert after 12 months, some say that she is set free, while others say that she can be married even against her will.
Some say that this “month” refers to the month of Elul, which is equivalent to all the other months.
(Rashi; Sifri, Ibn Ezra, Yevamot 47b, Mishne Torah, Ramban, Rav Menachem Aptor quoting the Zohar)
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Dedicated Today L'iluy Ratza Bat Baruch
To dedicate a "Daily Parsha: Did you know..?" please send us an email via our Contact Form.