Shailah of the Week by Rabbi Zvi Nussbaum
Rabbinic Coordinator, Kosher Hotline Administrator for the Orthodox Union
The Tenth of Av? Yes. Shulchan Aruch (OC 558:1) writes the Beit Hamikdash was set on fire at the end of the day on the ninth of Av but burned until the end of the tenth day of Av. We therefore refrain from drinking wine and eating meat on this day as well. Rema adds that this custom applies only until midday of the tenth.
Maharshal adds bathing and taking a haircut until mid-day on the tenth. Maamar Mordechai and others do not agree, limiting the restrictions on the tenth of Av to wine and meat. Ashkenazim are generally stringent, following Maharshal (Mishna Berura 558:3), while many Sephardim are lenient as per the Maamar Mordechai (Yechave Daat 5:41).
Rav Yaakov Emden writes that when Tisha B’Av falls on Thursday, as it does this year, one may bathe or take a haircut in honor of Shabbat immediately after the fast at night. This is also the opinion of Dayan Y.Y. Fischer (Even Yisrael 7:27). However, Rav Nissim Karelitz and Rav Shmuel Wosner only permitted bathing and taking a haircut beginning Friday morning.
Rav Yaakov Emden also implies that one may begin doing laundry immediately after the fast. Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach (Shemirat Shabbat K’hilchata 42, n. 15-16) writes that since this is permitted in honor of Shabbat, one may only wash clothing that is needed for Shabbat. However, Rav Nissim Karelitz (Chut Shani – Shabbat, p. 328) permitted washing all clothing immediately after the fast.
The Aruch Hashulchan (558:2) notes that when Tisha B’Av falls on Thursday there is definitely no justification to eat meat (or drink wine) before midday on Friday. Eating meat and drinking wine on Friday do not bring honor to Shabbat. Therefore, this restriction applies on Friday as well. (However, if one is invited to a seudat mitzvah, such as a siyum, one may eat meat or drink wine, even on Thursday evening.)