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People and Places
Moses: Topic Page
Hebrew lawgiver, probably b. Egypt. The prototype of the prophets, he led his people in the 13th cent. B.C. out of bondage in Egypt.
Jerusalem: Topic Page
Heb. Yerushalayim, Arab. Al Quds, city (1994 pop. 578,800), capital of Israel.
Synagogue: Topic Page
A Jewish place of worship and religious instruction, or a Jewish religious assembly or congregation.
Temple of Jerusalem
From The Hutchinson Unabridged Encyclopedia
Centre of Jewish national worship in Jerusalem, in both ancient and modern times, sited on Mount Moriah (or Temple Mount), one of the hills of Mount Zion. The Wailing Wall is the surviving part of the western wall of the enclosure of Herod's Temple. Since the destruction of the Temple in AD 70, Jews have gone there to pray and to mourn their dispersion and the loss of their homeland.
From The New Encyclopedia of Judaism
Title of a qualified Jewish religious authority and teacher.
From The New Encyclopedia of Judaism
An institution dedicated to advanced rabbinic study.
Abraham (Biblical Patriarch): Topic Page
In the Bible, progenitor of the Hebrews and the founder of Judaism.
David: Topic Page
King of the Hebrews 1004–965 BC.
Jehovah: Topic Page
In the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament), the name of God, revealed to Moses; in Hebrew texts it is represented by the letters YHVH (without the vowels "a o a") because it was regarded as too sacred to be pronounced; other religions say the letters as Yahweh.
Topic Pages - Scripture
Old Testament: Topic Page
Christian name for the Hebrew Bible, which serves as the first division of the Christian Bible (see New Testament).
Torah: Topic Page
In Judaism, the first five books of the Tenakh, or Hebrew Bible (Christian Old Testament).
Mishna: Topic Page
In Judaism, codified collection of Oral Law—legal interpretations of portions of the biblical books of Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy and other legal material.
Talmud: Topic Page
The Talmud is a vast compilation of the Oral Law with rabbinical elucidations, elaborations, and commentaries, in contradistinction to the Scriptures or Written Laws, and is the accepted authority for Orthodox Jews everywhere.
Hebrew language: Topic Page
Hebrew was the language of the Jewish people in biblical times, and most of the Old Testament was written in Hebrew.
Kosher: Topic Page
Conforming to religious law with regard to the preparation and consumption of food; in Judaism, conforming to the food laws (kashrut) of the Torah (as laid down in Deuteronomy and Leviticus) and the Mishnah.
Holidays and Events
Hanukkah: Topic Page
In Judaism, an eight-day festival of dedication and lights.
Passover: Topic Page
In Judaism, one of the most important and elaborate of religious festivals. Its celebration begins on the evening of the 14th of Nisan.
Seder: Topic Page
Ceremonial meal that begins the Jewish festival of Pesach (Passover), which celebrates the Exodus.
Rosh Hashanah: Topic Page
Two-day religious observance that marks the start of the Jewish New Year.
Yom Kippur: Topic Page
Jewish high holy day, or ‘day of awe’, held on the tenth day of Tishri (September-October).
Bar Mitzvah: Topic Page
In Judaism, initiation of a boy, which takes place at the age of 13, into the adult Jewish community.
Sukkot: Topic Page
Festival of Tabernacles. Sukkot is one of the three pilgrim festivals when, in ancient times, the Jews made pilgrimages to the Temple in Jerusalem.
Topic Pages - Divisions
Reform Judaism: Topic Page
Liberal Jewish movement. Reform communities vary, but tend to question the authority of the Talmud (Jewish laws).
Orthodox Judaism: Topic Page
All elements of the religious Jewish community that demand strict observance of Jewish law and praxis.
Kabbalah: Topic Page
A Jewish mystical tradition based on an esoteric interpretation of the Old Testament and other texts, or a system which incorporates kabbalistic principles; any secret, occult or mystical doctrine.
Sephardim: Topic Page
One of the two major geographic divisions of the Jewish people, consisting of those Jews whose forebears in the Middle Ages resided in the Iberian Peninsula, as distinguished from those who lived in Germanic lands, who came to be known as the Ashkenazim.
Form The New Encyclopedia of Judaism
Jews tracing their descent from ancestors who settled throughout northwestern Europe in the early Middle Ages.