Bechorot 44 - Three Groups of Blemishes in a Kohen

We saw that a Kohen may be disqualified because of a full-fledged blemish described in the Torah, or because of some lighter irregularity that makes him look different from a typical descendant of Aharon. What is the practical difference between the two? Both types cannot serve in the Temple and are liable to lashes if they do, but only the first one makes the actual service invalid.

There is also a third group of disqualifications, called "unsightly appearance," such as one with a sunken nose or whose lashes have fallen out. If such a Kohen serves in the Temple, he merely transgresses a commandment derived by implication, for which there is no punishment.

Further blemishes, some more strict, some less, and some added by the Sages, include an eye as large a calf's eye, or as small as that of a goose, a body too large for the limbs, or the limbs too large for the body, ears too small, an upper lip protruding beyond the lower one, and teeth that have fallen out - the last one because of unsightly appearance. Also included are abnormally bulging breasts and belly.

There are 50 blemishes shared with animals and 90 unique to Kohanim.

Art: Cuyp Jacob Gerritsz - Boy with a Goose