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Chapter 82:2
Carrying from One Domain to Another

2. It is forbidden to carry, to throw or to hand over any article on Shabbos: (i) From a "reshus ha'yochid" ("private domain") to a "reshus ha'rabim" ("public domain") or to a "carmelis." (ii) From a "reshus ha'rabim" to a "carmelis," or from a "carmelis" to a "reshus ha'rabim."

It is, however, permissible to transfer articles into a "makom patur" ("exempt area") from a "reshus ha'yochid" , from a "reshus ha'rabim", or from a "carmelis," and vice versa, provided that one does not carry the article a distance of four "amos" (1) within a "reshus ha'rabim" or a "carmelis."

There are many different distinctions regarding what constitutes a "reshus ha'rabim", a "carmelis" and a "reshus ha'yochid", besides those mentioned in the previous chapter. Therefore, in a city that does not have an "Eruv", a person who is not well versed [in these laws] should not carry an article from the place where it is located to a different place unless he is sure that doing so is permitted.

FOOTNOTES:

(1) The "amah" (cubit) referred to here is the distance from the elbow to the tip of the middle finger. Each person measures this according to his own body. Also, the maximum distance one may carry is not exactly four "amos," but the diagonal of a four "amah" square, which is approximately 5.6 "amos"(See Shulchan Aruch 349:1-2 and the Mishna Berura).

(2) An "Eruv" is an halachic border (like a piece of string or wire on top of poles) surrounding a large area which turns the entire area into a "reshus ha'yochid," within which one may carry objects anywhere.

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