Putting on the
Four-Cornered Garment with the Fringes Upon Each Corner
are attached to a four-cornered garment (arba
kanfot) as a reminder in accordance with
the mitzvah commanded by Hashem
which is also read as the third paragraph of the Shema'.
Though four-cornered garments were common in ancient times, the changing styles
could have rendered this mitzvah obsolete, but to prevent this the Sages
encouraged the wearing of a specially-made four-cornered garment called a
The numerical value of the letters in the Hebrew word
happens to be exactly 600. To make this numer to add up to
613, corresponding to the 613 mitzvot, the tzitzit is made of eight threads with
five knots. In this way each of the four tzitzit on the four corners of the
garment represents all of the teachings of the Torah, and therefore the wearing
of tzitzit is said to be of equal merit with the observance of the whole Torah
The 39 windings that go into the making of each fringe represent the numerical
value of "YKVK Echad"
- Hashem is One.
In readiness to put on one is to hold the tallit katan, inspect the tzitzit, and
recite the following blessing:
Baruch atah Hashem Elokeinu Melech ha-olam asher kid'shanu b'mitzvotav
v'tzivanu al mitzvat tzitzit
Blessed are You, Hashem, our G-d, King of the universe, Who has sanctified us
with His commandments, and has commanded us regarding the commandment of
May it be Your will, Hashem, my G-d and the G-d of my forefathers, that the
commandment of tzitzit be as worthy before You as if I had fulfilled it in all
its details, implications, and intentions, as well as the six hundred thirteen
commandments that are dependent upon it. Amein, Selah!
for a Master said, The
precept of fringes is equal to all the [other] precepts of the Torah.8
BaMidbar 15:37 Hashem said to Moshe, saying: 38 "Speak to the Benei
Yisrael and say to them that they shall make themselves tzitzit on the corners
of their garments, throughout their generations. And they shall place upon the
tzitzit of each corner a thread of techelet. 39 It shall constitute tzitzit for
you, that you may see it and remember all the mitzvot of Hashem and perform
them; and not explore after your heart and after your eyes after mitzvot and be
holy to your G-d. 41 I am Hashem, your G-d, Who has removed you from the land of
Egypt to be a G-d unto you; I am Hashem your G-d.
Talmud Bavli - Nedarim 25a Then let him adjure then, to fulfill all the
commands? — That might imply [the precept of] fringes,
8 Because it is written,
and it shall be unto you for a fringe, that you may look upon it, and remember
all the commandments of Hashem.