Netillat Yadayim with a cup with a hole



I was in a restaurant and there was a Netillat Yadayim cup which  had a hole in it. Was it Ok to wash with it?



It depends on the size of the hole. If the hole was big enough that water can go into the hole than it was not a good Netillah. If the hole was small enough that water only leaked from it but nothing could come in than it was Ok.

The Gemara in Chullin 107a:Rava said a cup which has a hole which can let water in we should not use or Neillat Yadayim.

The Gemara in Niddah 49a defines the size of ‘Kones Mashkeh’ a hole which lets water in the hole of Kones Mashkeh is larger than a hole which lets water out.
The Rabbis taught how do you check an earthen ware utensil if it has a hole which lets water in? Bring a large basin full of water and put the pot inside. If water goes in than you know it is Kones Mashkeh and if not, it is only Motzi Mashkeh. R’ Yehuda said you put the pot inside the basin first then you pour water over it. If water enters then it is considered Kones Mashkeh.

 The Tur (OH 159) quotes the word so the Tanna Kama that you put the pot into the water.
If the Kli does have a hole Kones Mashkeh, there is a disagreement if you may pour out the water from the hole:
The Rosh writes: a cup which has a hole and it holds a Reviit of water under the hole one may even pour out the water through the hole but not from the mouth of the cup because that is not considered part of the cup anymore.
The Beit Yosef derives from them that if the hole is smaller than Kones Mashkeh then you may use  the cup to do Netillah, the reason is any hole less than Kones Mashkeh does render the Kli broken which then purifies if it was impure. I the hole is smaller it is as if there is no hole.
The Semag writes though: a Kli which has  a hole the size of Kones Mashkeh we may not use it to do Netillat Yadayim since it not called a Kli anymore even if the hole is above a Reviit. If there is a hole smaller than Kones Mashkeh and there is an Reviit below it and he pours the water out through the hole it is fines. However, if he pours out the mouth of the Kli it is into good since the Kli is not a Kli anymore.  The water was poured not from a comes out there are two arguments:
  1. If  a cup has a hole which only leaks water. The Rosh is of the opinion that one may pour from the mouth of the cup and the Semag argues that one may only pour form the hole. (it is difficult to understand how one may pour water out of such a small hole we require the water to be poured in one flowing pour, and there is no such thing as washing bit by bit. And there is no way a drip can get all over your hands for one pouring and even if so, it is Bdiavad.
  2. A Kli which aa hole of Kones Mashkeh the Rosh says one may pour the water out of the hole and use it and the Semag says it is completely unusable.( the Mishna Berura asks how you can have a full flow).

The Shulchan Aruch (OH159:1) rules: We may only pour from a Kli… it has to hold a Reviit, and if it has a hole the size of Kones Mashkeh, that is that if you put it in water the water will go into the Kli through the hole , which is bigger than a hole where the water leaks out, then I is not considered a Kli and one may not use it for Netillat Yadyaim even if it holds a Reviit underneath.

In the next Halacha he writes: If one would pour out of the mouth of the Kli it is not considered a Kli since the water does not come from a Kli, but if he pours form the hole then it is fine.
The Mishna Berura though says to be stringent like the Semag if you can. So, if you used the whole Kli then you di not wash your hands.