More Hiddur Woes

I wrote this Mezzuza to help my own teacher fill an order.  I managed to get the Ayin and Dalet low enough without causing a negia to satisfy him.  However the part that I am not happy with is the first line of והיה.

The י  of אנכי is just barely within the shora.  The issue stems from trying the need for a parsha stumah.  The Shulhan Arukh says that Sephardim have the custom to extend the last line of the first parsha to the end of the shora and leave a space of 9 otiot at the beginning of the second parasha.
While there are some Sephardi Poskim who permit shitat HaTaz for Mezzuzot, Rav Ovadia Yosef and Rav Ben Tzion Abba Shaul have been kind enough to declare them possul.  So we are left with trying to fit the space of three time the word אשר(for hiddur purposes) into the beginning of the parasha.
While I know that there are opinions(the Yeriat Shlomo for instance) that state the three times אשר is the space of 22 yudin, which wouldn't be so bad, I wasn't writing for the Yeriat Shlomo.  The opinion that my teacher holds to is that three times אשר is a minimum of 31 yudin with 36 being preferable.
Here I pulled off 31(it should be noted that I typically follow the more lenient opinions, which from photos are also the way Rav Yehuda Pataya and the Kol Yaakov held).
The problem I am running into is that the lien is appearing too squished up, and I am not getting the 36yudin that I want.


  1. Why bother counting "yudin"? I would suggest to write on a piece of klaf 3 times אשר as tight as you can (but still כשר לכתחילה) and measure in milimiters the space needed and use that as an indication. And also how did you get to the חשבון of 36 yudin?

    1. The various measurements of yudin are in the halakha books of Sephardim. Thus the argument becomes if the ו of והיה should be under the ך of עינך or under the ם of וכתבתם or even after it, or anywhere in between.
      For instance the Kol Yaakov and Rav Petaya wrote it under the כ of וכתבתם

    2. r' michael,

      is it possible to shorten the gagot of the heys, reishes, lameds, tavs, and the khaf of 'anokhi"?

    3. Pesach,

      Already did shorten them. I could shorten the lamed more. Shortening the Kaf though is problematic according the to the Kol Yaakov and the Yeriat Shlomo.

  2. Its the same issue as the chabad sofrim when they write the last line shema of tefillin. you need to squashbut with practice you will get there. the space is perfect 3x asher the way you have it now

    Are you sure rav ovadya passels by mezuzah as well or only tefillin?

    1. I'll have to check Yabia Omer again, but I was pretty sure.

      I think if I shorten the Lamed a bit more and make the spaces between the words the bare minimum halakhically it will look better.

  3. As far as I know Rav Ovadia holds that the spacing of the Taz is kosher (not lechatchila) by mezuzah. I have seen this in writing but don't recall where.

    Also, as far as I'm aware, it is generally accepted that 3 times Asher even with space in between equals 23 yudin.
    alef - 2 yudin
    shin - 3 yudin
    reish - 2 yudin

    When it says the space should be 3x Asher, does that mean based on the average width of the ksav within that Torah, parsha or mezuzah or the width of the most narrow Asher possible that you can squeeze in with the same kulmus? It is my understanding 9at least lechatchila) that we judge the spacing based on the average width of that ksav. For example, if the sofer's average yud is 1mm wide but it is possible to make a yud 07mm wide, we would multiply the number of yudim by 1mm rather than the most narrow possible yud.


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