Spodik

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Rabbi Isser Zalman Meltzer wearing a spodik

A spodik (or spodek) is a tall fur hat worn by some Hasidic Jews, particularly members of sects originating in Congress Poland.

Description[edit]

Spodiks are to be distinguished from shtreimels, which are a similar type of fur hat worn by Hasidim. Shtreimels are shorter in height, wider, and disc-shaped, while spodiks are taller, thinner in bulk, and of cylindrical shape. Spodiks are made from fisher tails. Nowadays they are made also from fox fur.

Use[edit]

Ger Hasidim, being the largest Hasidic community of Polish origin, are the most famous for wearing spodiks. Virtually all married men among the Gerer Hasidim wear a spodik. Due to an edict by the Grand Rabbi of Ger designed to stop the extravagance of the hats, Gerrer Hasidim are only allowed to purchase fake fur spodiks that cost less than $600.[1]

Other groups that wear Spodiks include Alexander, Amshinov, Ashlag, Kotzk, Lublin, Modzitz, Ozrov-Henzin, and Radzin.

Variation[edit]

A similar hat called a "kolpik" (or "kolpak") is worn exclusively by the Rebbe of many Hasidic sects on certain occasions or by the unmarried sons and grandsons of the Rebbes on the Sabbath. These hats are often a lighter shade of brown. Included in these sects are Bobov, Belz, Munkacz, and the five modern dynasties descended from the Rizhin.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Slifkin, Natan. Man and Beast: Our Relationship with Animals in Jewish Law and Thought. p. 199. ISBN 1-933143-06-1. 

See also[edit]