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Is it true that Jews with the name Cohen cannot marry converts?

I asked this before but Yahoo refused to post it. Is it true? and why?

I'm kinda confused and jsut wondering.

Update:

Cohen is the second most common sur name in Israel (second to levi) and I mean converts as in people that converted to Judaism.

Update 2:

Sorry, but according to a sheet hillel is passing out on campus, cohen is the second most common surname.

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  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Cohen is ***not*** the 'second most common sur name' in Israel.

    Cohen men are direct descendants from Aaron, brother of Moses. They are members of the priestly class.

    Cohen men are not supposed to marry divorcees or women who are Jews by choice (converts). Whether all Cohen men adhere to this today or not, I have no idea. But yes, there are specific restrictions upon Cohen men that do not apply to any other Jewish men.

    http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/4682...

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I would strongly doubt Cohen is the second most common name, or that Levi is the most common.

    Jacob (i.e. Israel) has 12 sons, one of whom was named Levi. Levi had 3 sons; Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. Kohath had 4 sons; Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel. Amram had 3 children, Miriam, Aaron, and Moses. So only 1/2 of 1/4 of 1/3 of 1/12 of the Children of Israel (i.e. the descendants of Jacob) are Cohanim....in other word, less than 1 person in 3000 would be a Cohen, assuming all families had roughly the same number of children.

    All the descendants of paternal descent from Aaron are Cohanim, and all the descendants of paternal descent from Levi, except for Aaron and his descendants, are Leviim. The suffix -im is generally the plural of the same word in Hebrew. For example, someone is a Levi, but many people are Leviim, etc.

    Now Jews can roughly be divided into three groups. Israel (though based on context this can refer to everyone, not just the non-Leviim and non-Cohanim), the Leviim, and the Cohanim. Each group has their own particular responsibilities towards the others and, under Jewish Law, to G-d. The Cohanim are the ones that took care of several specific Temple duties and the Leviim took care of the more general ones.

    This can be somewhat complicated, so I'll move on and address your actual question.

    A Cohen is not allowed to marry a divorcee, a prostitute, or a Chalal - the offspring of a Cohen and one of the other prohibited groups, and all of their descendants. A Chalal is not considered a Cohen (though may still have the last name) and doesn't have the Cohanic restrictions. Now a convert is someone who was previously a member of another religion. Such a person essentially 'cheated' on G-d with a false god, and as such is a spiritual prostitute, and has 'divorced' herself from that religion. So by convention a Cohen is also prohibited from marrying one.

    So can a Jew whose last name Cohen marry a convert? Yes; if they are female, a Chalal, or just happen to have the last name while not actually being a Cohen (the title). If a Jew is a Cohen (the title), then no, they may not marry a convert - even if their last name happens to be Smith or anything else.

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  • 1 decade ago

    <Kosher> gave a great answer on the marriage. I'll star for my Orthodox contacts to find.

    I think they can marry but give up the Cohen legacy. To be a priest in old days one was elegable to be a judge & therefore needed to be more grounded. So a divorcee wasn't allowed, nor a convert because you had to be very knowledgable in Judiasm.

    On names, the sheet doesn't make sense since Levi is less common generally than Cohen among Jews. So maybe there's a finer point to it, that's not coming through? Cohen & Levi is just a small percent of Jewish names altogether.

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  • ME
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    They can but the children cannot be Cohens. So most Cohens marry other Cohens to keep the Cohen right. If all Cohens married non Cohens, then there would be no Cohens to be priests if the temple was ever rebuilt

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  • 1 decade ago

    leviticus 21:13 - 15 the priest (cohen) must marry a virgin of his (own )people

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  • 1 decade ago

    Yahoo evidently had some problems with posting questions -- I had one that still hasn't posted (it shows up in my list of questions) and that's been more than a day.

    As to your question, I have my doubts. Jews can be very independent and unless they are ultra-orthodox, I doubt the veracity of the opinion.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Cohen means priest in Hebrew. NO REAL JEWISH PRIEST WOULD MARRY ANY OTHER RELIGIOUS BRAND, especially Christians...

    BTW, Levy, Levite, and so on are also kinda sacred variations on the same idea... but not all Jews go for it... only the orthodox right wingers...

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  • 1 decade ago

    Salam,,

    good morning maam,,

    actually as far as marriage is concern, who ever he/she is, you can marry. But considering the fact of what faith that you have must be protected and be harm and change by your Jews lovers. it is advisable for the women in islam that must be married to a muslim man.

    The Qur'an lays out clear guidelines for marriage. One of the main traits you should look for in a potential spouse is a similarity in religious outlook. For the sake of compatibility, and the upbringing of future children, it is most recommended for a Muslim to marry another Muslim. However, in some circumstances it is permissible for a Muslim to marry a non-Muslim.

    Because of the faith that you have if you are commited to a jews man you should have the faith also to Cnvert him.

    In general, Muslim men are not permitted to marry non-Muslim women. "Do not marry unbelieving women until they believe. A slave woman who believes is better than an unbelieving woman, even though she allures you.... Unbelievers beckon you to the Fire. But Allah beckons by His Grace to the garden of bliss and forgiveness. And He makes His signs clear to mankind, that they may receive admonition" (Qur'an 2:221).

    Source(s): Base on the hadith
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  • There's no reason for confusion maam.

    You can marry whomsoever you wish to.

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  • 1 decade ago

    No because anyone can marry in a registery office regardless of what narrow minded believers in religion say.

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