Eshet kohen

The torah merits the wife of the kohen -אשת כהן- and daughter of the kohen -בת כהן-  additional privileges and restrictions in halacha.

Many of these privileges are openly discussed in ספר ויקרא regarding kodoshim consumption, with the restrictions also mentioned in the torah.

While the בת כהן is the actual biological daughter of the kohen, the אשת כהן may not be a בת כהן from birth.  However, it is implied by chazal that the אשת כהן be either the daughter of a kohen, levi or Yisroel as a kohen is restricted from marrying a convert or the daughter of a convert.

The eshet kohen -the kohen’s wife- is a prized part of kehuna.  The kohen’s wife is described by chazal as knowledgeable in the laws of tumah and taharah on a very practical level.  This being relevant as her husband, the kohen, consumes trumah which must remain in a state of taharah in order to be consumed.

Imot hakehuna

In the era of the bet hamikdash, “the mothers of kehuna” is the term given the wife of a kohen who has the merit of her sons working in the bet hamikdash.  Rashi writes that these mothers of kohanim would take pride in creating “bigdei kehuna” -garments of kehuna, for her kohen son to wear during his avodah in the bet hamikdash;


שהיו אמותיהן של כהנים עושות לבניהם משלהם כמין בגדי כהונה להראות תפארת עושרן ונוי מלאכתן וכמה הן מהדרות מצות דקתני כהן שעשתה לו אמו כתונת לובשה ועובד בה

The mishna relates another duty of imot hakehuna was ensuring that those who seek refuge in ערי המקלט have all the neccessities neccessary for their quality-of-life.  This was done with the intent that those refugees should refrain from praying for the demise of the kohen gadol;

אימותיהן של כהנים מספקות להן מחיה וכסות כדי שלא יתפללו על בניהם שימותו

Halacha places restriction on the eshet kohen in terms of her having extramarital relationships. To the extent that even if forced, she is forbidden to her kohen husband.

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