Part I: Orach Chayim Chapter 28 – MOVING THINGS FROM ONE DOMAIN TO ANOTHER ON THE SABBATH
A region at least four by four handsbreadths in horizontal size and at least ten handsbreadths high (see 345:18) that is surrounded by partitions or adjacent regions having a combined height difference (from it) of at least ten handsbreadths (see 345:16;362:2;363:36) is called a private domain (345:2). Even a portable object can be a private domain (345:6), and smaller regions adjacent to a private domain, as well as the space above it, are regarded as belonging to it; see 345:3-5,15-16 and 353:2). On partitions over deep water see 355:1-4; on bodies of water and disposal of water in a private domain see 356:1-2;357:1-3;376:1-2;377:1; on ships see 355:1;366:2;382:20.
An unroofed region at least 16 cubits wide that is open at both ends and is used for public passage (see 345:7,14) is called a public domain (see 345:7-9). Portions of such a region, or regions adjacent to it, that differ from it in height by more than three handsbreadths are not regarded as part of it (see 345:10-11,13,19) unless they are between nine and ten handsbreadths high and are used by the public (see 345:10), and the space ten or more handsbreadths above it is also not regarded as part of it (345:12). A region of size at least four by four handsbreadths that is roofed or is not used for public passage (for example, if it is partly surrounded by partitions, or differs in height from the adjacent regions by between three and ten handsbreadths), even if it is adjacent to a public domain, is called a KARMELIS; see 345:1,10,14,16-17. A smaller region adjacent to a KARMELIS is also regarded as a KARMELIS unless it is ten or more handsbreadths above it (see 345:18-19;346:3;365:4).
A small region adjacent to a public domain that differs from it in height by between three and ten handsbreadths is called a MEKOM PETUR; see 345: 10,17,19. The space ten or more handsbreadths above a public domain (345:12) or KARMELIS (see 345:18) is also called a MEKOM PETUR. On a part of a private domain that is adjacent to a public domain and is used by the public see 361:1.
It is Biblically forbidden to move things from a private domain to a public domain or vice versa, and it is rabbinically forbidden to move things personally (see 355:1-3) from either of them to a KARMELIS or vice versa (346:1). On moving things from one domain to a nonadjacent domain of the same type see 353:1;354:1-2;355:1. On cases where the moving is not performed completely by a single person see 347:1 and 348:1.
It is Biblically forbidden to move things more than four cubits in a public domain, and rabbinically forbidden to do so in a KARMELIS (346:2), even if the moving is done only a little at a time (see 349:5). On the definition of four cubits in this connection see 349:1-2 and 396:1; on cases where the moving is not performed completely by a single person see 349:3-4. On moving things in one domain while standing in another domain see 350:1;351:1;352:1-2; on handling things that may fall into another domain see 353:3;354:2;365:5-6.
To be valid, a partition must be able to withstand an ordinary wind (362:1;363:5) and must come within three handsbreadths of the ground (362:1;363:7,10). It can be composed even of movable objects or of tied animals (362:5;363:3); on using people for a partition see 362:5-7 and 363:3; on a partition that was made on the Sabbath see 362:3. It must not have a gap wider than ten cubits or a gap used by the public (see 365:2- 3), and a majority of it must not consist of gaps three handsbreadths or more wide (see 360:1;361:2;362:5,8-9). A gap covered by a lintel that has two vertical pieces under it, forming an “entrance shape”, is not regarded as a gap, but opinions differ as to whether this is effective in an uninhabited area or for a gap more than ten cubits wide (see 361:2;362:10- 12;363:2,26).
Shulchan-Aruch, Copyright © 2005 by Rabbi Dr. Azriel Rosenfeld and Torah.org. The author is Director of the Center for Automation Research at the University of Maryland in College Park.