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Costume Time
Costume Time

Those who first hear about the custom of Purim costumes might assume that the tradition began as an imitation of Halloween. Research, however, places the origin of Halloween costumes in the 18th century, while Purim disguises are mentioned in rabbinic texts as far back as the 13th century.

Presidentially Approved
Presidentially Approved

As the only territory completely under the control of the Federal Government, it is not surprising that Washington, D.C. is home to the only synagogue whose existence was enacted by an Act of Congress and signed by a U.S. President.

The Purim Commitment
The Purim Commitment

What does the holiday of Purim have to do with Jews reconnecting to their Jewish heritage?

Finally Buried
Finally Buried

On the 4th of Adar 1307, the Maharam of Rothenberg was buried in the Jewish cemetery in Worms–fourteen years after his death. The rabbi’s remains were released from the fortress of Ensishem when a ransom was paid by Alexander Suskind Wimpfen, who asked only that he be buried next to the Maharam.

Who Was Mordechai?
Who Was Mordechai?

There are some people in this world who always seem to be right in the thick of the action. As described in the Book of Esther, this was Mordechai.

The Purim Story In Under 300 Words
The Purim Story In Under 300 Words

At the end of a 180-day feast, the King of Persia-Medea, Achashverosh, banished (some say executed) his wife, Vashti, for refusing to appear at his banquet. He then staged an elaborate beauty contest to find a new queen.

When Adar Begins
When Adar Begins

The month of Adar, the twelfth month of the Jewish calendar year, begins today. The Talmud (Ta’anith 29a) states:“Mee’sheh’nichnas Adar, marbin b’simchah,” With the beginning of Adar, rejoicing is increased.

Just A Half Shekel
Just A Half Shekel

This Shabbat is Shabbat Shekalim, the Sabbath of Shekels. The Torah portion that speaks of Shekalim (Exodus 30:11-16) is read as the Maftir portion after the regular weekly Torah reading has concluded. It refers to God’s c…

What’s in the Book – Malachi
What’s in the Book – Malachi

The Book of Malachi is the last of the Twelve Prophets, and there is no reference to its historical period in the text other than the fact that sacrifices are once again being offered in the Temple.

Waiting For Ice Cream
Waiting For Ice Cream

According to the Talmudic sage Mar Ukva, his father waited an entire day between eating meat and eating dairy in order to avoid transgressing the prohibition of eating milk and meat together.

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