Happy Purim Greeting Card Printable PDF | Party Mask Multicolor Calligraphy Minimalist Design Image 1

Happy Purim Greeting Card Printable PDF | Party Mask Multicolor Calligraphy Minimalist Design Image 1

Happy Purim Greeting Card Printable PDF | Party Mask Multicolor Calligraphy Minimalist Design Image 1

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Embrace the Purim season with our Purim Greeting Card Printable PDF! This elegant 7x5-inch flat card features an elegant modern design, setting the perfect tone for the festive season. The high-resolution PDF allows for crystal-clear printing, ensuring every detail shines. With a blank back for your personalized message, it's not just a card; it's a canvas for your warm wishes. Instantly access, print, and share the joy with family and friends – making this Purim an unforgettable occasion! 

Celebrate Purim in elegance with our Purim Greeting Card Printable PDF and share the joy with your loved ones – the perfect way to convey warm wishes during this feast of lots festive season!

You Get:

  • 1 PDF file that is 7 inches wide x 5 inches long.
  • Type: Flat card, not folded.
  • Back: Blank space where you can write your own personalized message.
  • High resolution and great quality files

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What are Purim Holiday Wishes Jewish Greeting Card Printable PDFs

Celebrating Joy: Purim Holiday Wishes Jewish Greeting Card Printable PDFs

In Jewish celebrations, Purim stands out as a festival of exuberance, joy, and communal revelry. Infusing this festive spirit into modern expressions, Purim Holiday Wishes Jewish Greeting Card Printable PDFs offer a delightful and convenient way to extend warm wishes during this joyous occasion. Let's explore the essence of these unique cards, delving into their significance, design elements, and the seamless fusion of tradition and technology.

The Significance of Purim:

Purim commemorates the triumph of the Jewish people over adversity, as recounted in the biblical Book of Esther. This lively festival is characterized by joyous celebrations, feasting, and the tradition of exchanging gifts and well-wishes. Purim Holiday Wishes Jewish Greeting Card Printable PDFs capture the essence of this spirited occasion, providing a tangible and customizable medium for extending good wishes to friends, family, and loved ones.

Design Elements Reflecting the Joy of Purim:

These printable cards serve as canvases for artistic expressions that mirror the joy and vibrancy associated with Purim. From whimsical illustrations of hamantaschen (triangular pastries) to colorful masks symbolizing the concealed nature of the Purim story, each card is carefully designed to encapsulate the festive spirit of the holiday. The incorporation of traditional symbols, such as the Megillah scroll and the Star of David, adds depth to the visual storytelling.

Customization for Personalized Celebrations:

One of the remarkable features of Purim Holiday Wishes Jewish Greeting Card Printable PDFs is the ability to personalize each card. Users can add individual names, heartfelt messages, or even customize the color schemes to suit personal preferences. This level of customization transforms each card into a unique expression of joy and goodwill, making it a cherished keepsake for the recipient.

Seamless Integration of Tradition and Technology:

While rooted in ancient traditions, Purim Holiday Wishes Jewish Greeting Card Printable PDFs seamlessly embrace modern technology. The convenience of downloadable PDF formats ensures quick access to a diverse array of designs, eliminating the need for physical trips to the store. This fusion of tradition and technology allows individuals to honor the festive customs of Purim with contemporary ease.

Versatility for Various Celebrations:

Purim is a multi-faceted celebration, and these greeting cards cater to a variety of occasions within the festival. Whether it's conveying warm wishes for mishloach manot (gifts of food) exchanges, celebrating the joy of costume parties, or simply sending heartfelt greetings, Purim Holiday Wishes Jewish Greeting Card Printable PDFs offer a versatile and meaningful way to participate in the festivities.

As Purim approaches, Purim Holiday Wishes Jewish Greeting Card Printable PDFs emerge as delightful messengers of joy and celebration. In blending tradition with modern convenience, these printable cards provide a charming and accessible means to share the festive spirit with loved ones. May each personalized wish within these cards add an extra layer of joy to the jubilant atmosphere of Purim, creating lasting memories of this special occasion.

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Purim From Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia

Purim (/ˈpʊərɪm/פּוּרִים‎ Pūrīmlit.'lots'; see Name below) is a Jewish holiday that commemorates the saving of the Jewish people from annihilation at the hands of an official of the Achaemenid Empire named Haman, as it is recounted in the Book of Esther (usually dated to the 5th century BCE).

Haman was the royal vizier to the Persian king Ahasuerus (Xerxes I or Artaxerxes IKhshayarsha and Artakhsher in Old Persian, respectively).[1][2][3][4] His plans were foiled by Mordecai of the tribe of Benjamin, and Esther, Mordecai's cousin and adopted daughter who had become queen of Persia after her marriage to Ahasuerus.[5] The day of deliverance became a day of feasting and rejoicing among Jews.

According to the Scroll of Esther,[6] "they should make them days of feasting and gladness, and of sending portions one to another, and gifts to the poor". Purim is celebrated among Jews by:

  • Exchanging gifts of food and drink, known as mishloach manot
  • Donating charity to the poor, known as mattanot la-evyonim[7]
  • Eating a celebratory meal, known as se'udat Purim
  • Public recitation of the Scroll of Esther (קריאת מגילת אסתר‎), or "reading of the Megillah", usually in synagogue
  • Reciting additions to the daily prayers and the grace after meals, known as Al HaNissim
  • Applying henna[8][9] (Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews)

Other customs include wearing masks and costumes, public celebrations and parades (Adloyada), and eating hamantashen (transl. "Haman's pockets"); men are encouraged to drink wine or any other alcoholic beverage.[10]

According to the Hebrew calendar, Purim is celebrated annually on the 14th day of the Hebrew month of Adar (and it is celebrated in Adar II in Hebrew leap years, which occur every two to three years), the day following the victory of the Jews over their enemies, the 13th of Adar, a day now observed with the fast of Esther. In cities that were protected by a surrounding wall at the time of Joshua, Purim was celebrated on the 15th of the month of Adar on what is known as Shushan Purim, since fighting in the walled city of Shushan continued through the 14th day of Adar.[11] Today, only Jerusalem and a few other cities celebrate Purim on the 15th of Adar.


Purim is the plural of the Hebrew word pur (loan from Akkadian puru) meaning "lot".[12][a] Its use as the name of this festival comes from Esther 3:6–7, describing the choice of date:

6: [...] having been told who Mordecai's people were, Haman plotted to do away with all the Jews, Mordecai's people, throughout the kingdom of Ahasuerus.
7: In the first month, that is, the month of Nisan, in the twelfth year of King Ahasuerus, pur—which means "the lot"—was cast before Haman concerning every day and every month, [until it fell on] the twelfth month, that is, the month of Adar.[14]

Purim narrative[edit]

The Book of Esther begins with a six-month (180-day) drinking feast given by King Ahasuerus of the Persian Empire for the army and Media and the satraps and princes of the 127 provinces of his kingdom, concluding with a seven-day drinking feast for the inhabitants of Shushan (Susa), rich and poor, and a separate drinking feast for the women organized by Queen Vashti in the pavilion of the royal courtyard.

At this feast, Ahasuerus gets thoroughly drunk, and at the prompting of his courtiers, orders his wife Vashti to "display her beauty" before the nobles and populace, wearing her royal crown. The rabbis of the Oral Torah interpret this to mean that he wanted her to wear only her royal crown, meaning that she would be naked. Her refusal prompts Ahasuerus to have her removed from her post. Ahasuerus then orders all young women to be presented to him, so that he can choose a new queen to replace Vashti. One of these is Esther, who was orphaned at a young age and is being fostered by her first cousin Mordecai. She finds favor in the King's eyes, and is made his new wife. Esther does not reveal her origins or that she is Jewish, as Mordecai told her not to. Based on the choice of words used in the text (and since the Torah permits an uncle to marry his niece), some rabbinic commentators state that she was actually Mordecai's wife.

Shortly afterwards, Mordecai discovers a plot by two palace guards Bigthan and Teresh to kill Ahasuerus. They are apprehended and hanged, and Mordecai's service to the King is recorded in the daily record of the court.[15]

Ahasuerus appoints Haman as his viceroy. Mordecai, who sits at the palace gates, falls into Haman's disfavor as he refuses to bow down to him. Having found out that Mordecai is Jewish, Haman plans to kill not just Mordecai but the entire Jewish minority in the empire. Obtaining Ahasuerus' permission and funds to execute this plan, he casts lots ("purim") to choose the date on which to do this—the 14th of the month of Adar. When Mordecai finds out about the plans, he puts on sackcloth and ashes, a sign of mourning, publicly weeping and lamenting, and many other Jews in Shushan and other parts of Ahasuerus' empire do likewise, with widespread penitence and fasting. Esther discovers what has transpired; there follows an exchange of messages between her and Mordecai, with Hatach, one of the palace servants, as the intermediary. Mordecai requests that she intercede with the King on behalf of the embattled Jews; she replies that nobody is allowed to approach the King, under penalty of death.

Mordecai warns her that she will not be any safer in the palace than any other Jew, says that if she keeps silent, salvation for the Jews will arrive from some other quarter but "you and your father's house (family line) will perish," and suggests that she was elevated to the position of queen to be of help in just such an emergency. Esther has a change of heart, says she will fast and pray for three days and will then approach the King to seek his help, despite the law against doing so, and "if I perish, I perish." She also requests that Mordecai tell all Jews of Shushan to fast and pray for three days together with her. On the third day, she seeks an audience with Ahasuerus, during which she invites him to a feast in the company of Haman. During the feast, she asks them to attend a further feast the next evening. Meanwhile, Haman is again offended by Mordecai's refusal to bow to him; egged on by his wife Zeresh and unidentified friends, he builds a gallows for Mordecai, with the intention to hang him there the very next day.[16]

That night, Ahasuerus suffers from insomnia, and when the court's daily records are read to him to help him fall asleep, he learns of the services rendered by Mordecai in the earlier plot against his life. Ahasuerus asks whether anything was done for Mordecai and is told that he received no recognition for saving the King's life. Just then, Haman appears, and King Ahasuerus asks him what should be done for the man that the King wishes to honor. Thinking that the King is referring to Haman himself, Haman says that the honoree should be dressed in the King's royal robes and led around on the King's royal horse. To Haman's horror, the king instructs Haman to render such honors to Mordecai.[17]

Later that evening, Ahasuerus and Haman attend Esther's second banquet, at which she reveals that she is Jewish and that Haman is planning to exterminate her people, which includes her. Ahasuerus becomes enraged and instead orders Haman hanged on the gallows that Haman had prepared for Mordecai. The previous decree against the Jewish people could not be nullified, so the King allows Mordecai and Esther to write another decree as they wish. They decree that Jewish people may preemptively kill those thought to pose a lethal risk. As a result, on 13 Adar, 500 attackers and Haman's 10 sons are killed in Shushan. Throughout the empire 75,000 of the Jewish peoples' enemies are killed.[18] On the 14th, another 300 are killed in Shushan. No spoils are taken.[19]

Mordecai assumes the position of second in rank to Ahasuerus, and institutes an annual commemoration of the delivery of the Jewish people from annihilation.[20]

Scriptural and rabbinical sources[edit]

A brief Persian account of events is provided by Islamic historian Muhammad ibn Jarir al-Tabari in his History of the Prophets and Kings (completed 915 CE).[28] Basing his account on Jewish and Christian sources, al-Tabari provides additional details such as the original Persian form "Asturya" for "Esther".[29] He places events during the rule of Ardashir Bahman (Artaxerxes II),[30] but confuses him with Ardashir al-Tawil al-Ba (Artaxerxes I), while assuming Ahasuerus to be the name of a co-ruler.[29] Another brief Persian account is recorded by Masudi in The Meadows of Gold (completed 947 CE).[31] He refers to a Jewish woman who had married the Persian King Bahman (Artaxerxes II), and delivered her people,[30][32][33] thus corroborating this identification of Ahasuerus. He also mentions the woman's daughter, Khumay, who is not known in Jewish tradition but is well remembered in Persian folklore. Al-Tabari calls her Khumani and tells how her father (Ardashir Bahman) married her. Ferdowsi in his Shahnameh (c. 1000 CE) also tells of King Bahman marrying Khumay.[34]

Modern Biblical scholarship generally identifies Ahasuerus with Xerxes I of Persia.[35]

All of the books of the Old Testament, except the book of Esther, were discovered among the Dead Sea Scrolls by Archaeologists in 20th century.[36]

Modern scholarship views[edit]

Since the 1890s, most academics have “agreed in seeing [The Book of] Esther as a historicized myth or ritual” and generally concluded that Purim has its origin in a BabylonianPersian, or Palestinian myth or festival (though which one is the subject of discussion).[37][38] Amnon Netzer and Shaul Shaked argue that the names "Mordecai" and "Esther" are similar to those of the Babylonian gods Marduk and Ishtar.[39][40] Scholars W.S. McCullough, Muhammad Dandamayev and Shaul Shaked say that the Book of Esther is historical fiction.[40][41][42] Amélie Kuhrt says the Book of Esther was composed in the Hellenistic period and it shows a perspective of Persian court identical to classical Greek books.[43] Shaul Shaked says the date of composition of the book is unknown, but most likely not much after the fall of the Achaemenid kingdom, during the Parthian period, perhaps in the 3rd or 2nd century BCE.[40] McCullough also suggests that Herodotus recorded the name of Xerxes's queen as Amestris (the daughter of Otanes) and not as Esther.[42] Scholars Albert I. Baumgarten and S. David Sperling and R.J. Littman say that, according to Herodotus, Xerxes could only marry a daughter of one of the six allies of his father Darius I.[44][45]


After the nighttime Megillah reading the following two paragraphs are recited:[52]

The first one is an acrostic poem that starts with each letter of the Hebrew alphabet, starting with "Who balked (... אשר הניא) the counsel of the nations and annulled the counsel of the cunning. When a wicked man stood up against us (... בקום עלינו), a wantonly evil branch of Amalek's offspring ..." and ending with "The rose of Jacob (ששנת יעקב) was cheerful and glad, when they jointly saw Mordechai robed in royal blue. You have been their eternal salvation (תשועתם הייתה לנצח), and their hope throughout generations."

The second is recited at night, but after the morning Megillah reading only this is recited:

The rose of Jacob was cheerful and glad, when they jointly saw Mordechai robed in royal blue. You have been their eternal salvation, and their hope throughout generations.

At night and in the morning:

שושנת יעקב צהלה ושמחה בראותם יחד תכלת מרדכי. תשועתם היית לנצח ותקותם בכל דור ודור. להודיע שכל קויך לא יבשו ולא יכלמו לנצח כל החוסים בך. ארור המן אשר בקש לאבדי ברוך מרדכי היהודי. ארורה זרש אשת מפחידי ברוכה אסתר בעדי וגם חרבונה זכור לטובTo make known that all who hope in You will not be shamed (להודיע שכל קויך לא יבשו); nor ever be humiliated, those taking refuge in You. Accursed be Haman who sought to destroy me, blessed be Mordechai the Yehudi. Accursed be Zeresh the wife of my terrorizer, blessed be Esther who sacrificed for me—and Charvonah, too, be remembered for good (וגם חרבונה זכור לטוב) [for suggesting to the King that Haman be hanged on the gallows.[53]]

Women and Megillah reading[edit]

Women have an obligation to hear the Megillah because "they also were involved in that miracle."[54] Orthodox communities, including most Modern Orthodox ones, however, generally do not allow women to lead the Megillah reading. Rabbinic authorities who hold that women should not read the Megillah for themselves, because of an uncertainty as to which blessing they should recite upon the reading, nonetheless agree that they have an obligation to hear it read. According to these authorities if women, or men for that matter, cannot attend the services in the synagogue, the Megillah should be read for them in private by any male over the age of thirteen.[55] Often in Orthodox communities there is a special public reading only for women, conducted either in a private home or in a synagogue, but the Megillah is read by a man.[56]

Some Modern Orthodox leaders have held that women can serve as public Megillah readers. Women's megillah readings have become increasingly common in more liberal Modern Orthodox Judaism, though women may only read for other women, according to Ashkenazi authorities.[57]

Blotting out Haman's name[edit]

Main article: grager

When Haman's name is read out loud during the public chanting of the Megillah in the synagogue, which occurs 54 times, the congregation engages in noise-making to blot out his name. The practice can be traced back to the Tosafists (the leading French and German rabbis of the 13th century). In accordance with a passage in the Midrash, where the verse "Thou shalt blot out the remembrance of Amalek"[58] is explained to mean "even from wood and stones." A custom developed of writing the name of Haman, the offspring of Amalek, on two smooth stones, and knocking them together until the name was blotted out. Some wrote the name of Haman on the soles of their shoes, and at the mention of the name stamped with their feet as a sign of contempt. Another method was to use a noisy ratchet, called a ra'ashan (from the Hebrew ra-ash, meaning "noise") and in Yiddish a grager. Some of the rabbis protested against these uproarious excesses, considering them a disturbance of public worship, but the custom of using a ratchet in the synagogue on Purim is now almost universal, with the exception of Spanish and Portuguese Jews and other Sephardic Jews, who consider them an improper interruption of the reading.[59]

Food gifts and charity[edit]

Main article: Mishloach manot


The Book of Esther prescribes "the sending of portions one man to another, and gifts to the poor".[60] According to halakha, each adult must give at least two different foods to one person, and at least two charitable donations to two poor people.[61] The food parcels are called mishloach manot ("sending of portions"), and in some circles the custom has evolved into a major gift-giving event.[62]

To fulfill the mitzvah of giving charity to two poor people, one can give either food or money equivalent to the amount of food that is eaten at a regular meal. It is better to spend more on charity than on the giving of mishloach manot.[61] In the synagogue, regular collections of charity are made on the festival and the money is distributed among the needy. No distinction is made among the poor; anyone who is willing to accept charity is allowed to participate. It is obligatory for the poorest Jew, even one who is himself dependent on charity, to give to other poor people.[61][63]

Purim meal (se'udah) and festive drinking[edit]

On Purim day, a festive meal called the Se'udat Purim is held.

There is a longstanding custom of drinking wine at the feast. The custom stems from a statement in the Talmud attributed to a rabbi named Rava that says one should drink on Purim until he can "no longer distinguish between arur Haman ("Cursed is Haman") and baruch Mordechai ("Blessed is Mordecai")." The drinking of wine features prominently in keeping with the jovial nature of the feast, but also helps simulate the experience of spiritual blindness, wherein one cannot distinguish between good (Mordechai) and evil (Haman). This is based on the fact that the salvation of the Jews occurred through wine.[64] Alcoholic consumption was later codified by the early authorities, and while some advocated total intoxication, others, consistent with the opinion of many early and later rabbis, taught that one should only drink a little more than usual and then fall asleep, whereupon one will certainly not be able to tell the difference between arur Haman ("cursed be Haman") and baruch Mordecai ("blessed be Mordechai"). Other authorities, including the Magen Avraham, have written that one should drink until one is unable to calculate the gematria (numerical values) of both phrases.[citation needed]


Main article: Fast of Esther

The Fast of Esther, observed before Purim, on the 13th of Adar, is an original part of the Purim celebration, referred to in Esther 9:31–32. The first who mentions the Fast of Esther is Aḥai of Shabḥa (8th century CE) in She'iltot 4; the reason there given for its institution is based on an interpretation of Esther 9:18, Esther 9:31 and Talmud Megillah 2a: "The 13th was the time of gathering", which gathering is explained to have had also the purpose of public prayer and fasting. Some, however, used to fast three days in commemoration of the fasting of Esther; but as fasting was prohibited during the month of Nisan, the first and second Mondays and the Thursday following Purim were chosen. The fast of the 13th is still commonly observed; but when that date falls on Shabbat, the fast is pushed back to the preceding Thursday, Friday being needed to prepare for Sabbath and the following Purim festival.[65][66]



It is common to greet one another on Purim in Hebrew with Chag Purim Sameach (חג פורים שמח, in Yiddish with ah freilichin Purim (א פרייליכן פורים) or in Ladino with Purim Allegre. The Hebrew greeting loosely translates to 'Happy Purim Holiday' and the Yiddish and Ladino translate to 'Happy Purim'.[67][68]


The custom of masquerading in costumes and the wearing of masks probably originated among the Italian Jews at the end of the 15th century.[69] The concept was possibly influenced by the Roman carnival and spread across Europe. The practice was only introduced into Middle Eastern countries during the 19th century. The first Jewish codifier to mention the custom was Judah Minz (d. 1508 at Venice).[70] While most authorities are concerned about the possible infringement of biblical law if men don women's apparel, others permit all forms of masquerades, because they are viewed as forms of merry-making. Some rabbis went as far as to allow the wearing of rabbinically-forbidden shatnez.[71]

Other reasons given for the custom: It is a way of emulating God who "disguised" his presence behind the natural events which are described in the Purim story, and it has remained concealed (yet ever-present) in Jewish history since the destruction of the First Temple. Since charity is a central feature of the day, when givers and/or recipients disguise themselves this allows greater anonymity thus preserving the dignity of the recipient. Another reason for masquerading is that it alludes to the hidden aspect of the miracle of Purim, which was "disguised" by natural events but was really the work of the Almighty.[71]

Additional explanations are based on:

  • Targum on Esther (Chapter 3) which states that Haman's hate for Mordecai stemmed from Jacob's 'dressing up' like Esau to receive Isaac's blessings;[72]
  • Others who "dressed up" or hid whom they were in the story of Esther:
    • Esther not revealing that she is a Jewess;[72]
    • Mordecai wearing sackcloth;[72]
    • Mordecai being dressed in the king's clothing;[72]
    • "[M]any from among the peoples of the land became Jews; for the fear of the Jews was fallen upon them" (Esther 8:17); on which the Vilna Gaon comments that those gentiles were not accepted as converts because they only made themselves look Jewish on the outside, as they did this out of fear;[72]
  • To recall the episodes that only happened in "outside appearance" as stated in Talmud Megillah 12a)[73] that the Jews bowed to Haman only from the outside, internally holding strong to their Jewish belief, and likewise, God only gave the appearance as if he was to destroy all the Jews while internally knowing that he will save them.[72]

Burning of Haman's effigy[edit]

As early as the 5th century, there was a custom to burn an effigy of Haman on Purim.[69] The spectacle aroused the wrath of the early Christians who interpreted the mocking and "execution" of the Haman effigy as a disguised attempt to re-enact the death of Jesus and ridicule the Christian faith. Prohibitions were issued against such displays under the reign of Flavius Augustus Honorius (395–423) and of Theodosius II (408–450).[69] The custom was popular during the Geonic period (9th and 10th centuries),[69] and a 14th century scholar described how people would ride through the streets of Provence holding fir branches and blowing trumpets around a puppet of Haman which was hanged and later burnt.[74] The practice continued into the 20th century, with children treating Haman as a sort of "Guy Fawkes."[75] In the early 1950s, the custom was still observed in Iran and some remote communities in Kurdistan[74] where young Muslims would sometimes join in.[76]

Purim spiel[edit]

Main article: Purim spiel

A Purim spiel (Purim play) is a comic dramatization that attempts to convey the saga of the Purim story.[77] By the 18th century, in some parts of Eastern Europe, the Purim plays had evolved into broad-ranging satires with music and dance for which the story of Esther was little more than a pretext. Indeed, by the mid-19th century, some were even based on other biblical stories. Today, Purim spiels can revolve around anything relating to Jews, Judaism, or even community gossip that will bring cheer and comic relief to an audience celebrating the day.[77][78]


Songs associated with Purim are based on sources that are Talmudic, liturgical and cultural. Traditional Purim songs include Mishenichnas Adar marbim be-simcha ("When [the Hebrew month of] Adar enters, we have a lot of joy"—Mishnah Taanith 4:1) and LaYehudim haitah orah ve-simchah ve-sasson ve-yakar ("The Jews had light and gladness, joy and honor"—Esther 8:16).[b] The Shoshanat Yaakov prayer is sung at the conclusion of the Megillah reading. A number of children's songs (with non-liturgical sources) also exist: Once There Was a Wicked Wicked Man,[79][80] Ani Purim,[81] Chag Purim, Chag Purim, Chag Gadol Hu LaYehudim,[82][83] Mishenichnas AdarShoshanas YaakovAl HaNisimVeNahafoch HuLaYehudim Hayesa OrahU Mordechai YatzaKacha Yay'asehChayav InishUtzu Eitzah.[84]

Traditional foods[edit]

On Purim, Ashkenazi Jews and Israeli Jews (of both Ashkenazi and Sephardic descent) eat triangular pastries called hamantaschen ("Haman's pockets") or oznei Haman ("Haman's ears").[68] A sweet pastry dough is rolled out, cut into circles, and traditionally filled with a raspberry, apricot, date, or poppy seed filling. More recently, flavors such as chocolate have also gained favor, while non-traditional experiments such as pizza hamantaschen also exist.[85] The pastry is then wrapped up into a triangular shape with the filling either hidden or showing. Among Sephardi Jews, a fried pastry called fazuelos is eaten, as well as a range of baked or fried pastries called Orejas de Haman (Haman's Ears) or Hojuelas de Haman.[citation needed]

Seeds, nuts, legumes and green vegetables are customarily eaten on Purim, as the Talmud relates that Queen Esther ate only these foodstuffs in the palace of Ahasuerus, since she had no access to kosher food.[86]

Kreplach, a kind of dumpling filled with cooked meat, chicken or liver and served in soup, are traditionally served by Ashkenazi Jews on Purim. "Hiding" the meat inside the dumpling serves as another reminder of the story of Esther, the only book of Hebrew scriptures besides The Song of Songs that does not contain a single reference to God, who seems to hide behind the scenes.[87]

Arany galuska, a dessert consisting of fried dough balls and vanilla custard, is traditional for Jews from Hungary and Romania, as well as their descendants.[88]

In the Middle Ages, European Jews would eat nilish, a type of blintz or waffle.[89]

Special breads are baked among various communities. In Moroccan Jewish communities, a Purim bread called ojos de Haman ("eyes of Haman") is sometimes baked in the shape of Haman's head, and the eyes, made of eggs, are plucked out to demonstrate the destruction of Haman.[90]

Among Polish Jews, koilitch, a raisin Purim challah that is baked in a long twisted ring and topped with small colorful candies, is meant to evoke the colorful nature of the holiday.[91]

Torah learning[edit]

There is a widespread tradition to study the Torah in a synagogue on Purim morning, during an event called "Yeshivas Mordechai Hatzadik" to commemorate all the Jews who were inspired by Mordechai to learn Torah to overturn the evil decree against them. Children are especially encouraged to participate with prizes and sweets due to the fact that Mordechai taught many children Torah during this time.[92]

Iranian Jews[edit]

Iranian Jews celebrate Purim in much the same way as Jews around the world, but with some unique traditions and customs that reflect their Iranian heritage. Distinctive aspects of Purim celebrations among Iranian Jews is the use of traditional Persian costumes and masks. Iranian Jews also observe many of the traditional Purim practices found in other Jewish communities, such as the reading of the Megillah (the Book of Esther), the giving of gifts and charity, and the festive Purim meal (seudah).[93]

In Jerusalem[edit]

Shushan Purim[edit]

Shushan Purim falls on Adar 15 and is the day on which Jews in Jerusalem celebrate Purim.[61] The day is also universally observed by omitting the Tachanun prayer and having a more elaborate meal than on ordinary days.[94]

Purim is celebrated on Adar 14 because the Jews in unwalled cities fought their enemies on Adar 13 and rested the following day. However, in Shushan, the capital city of the Persian Empire, the Jews were involved in defeating their enemies on Adar 13–14 and rested on the 15th (Esther 9:20–22). In commemoration of this, it was decided that while the victory would be celebrated universally on Adar 14, for Jews living in Shushan, the holiday would be held on Adar 15. Later, in deference to Jerusalem, the Sages determined that Purim would be celebrated on Adar 15 in all cities which had been enclosed by a wall at the time of Joshua's conquest of the Land of Israel. This criterion allowed the city of Jerusalem to retain its importance for Jews, and although Shushan was not walled at the time of Joshua, it was made an exception since the miracle occurred there.[61]

Today, there is debate as to whether outlying neighborhoods of Jerusalem are obliged to observe Purim on the 14th or 15th of Adar.[95] Further doubts have arisen as to whether other cities were sufficiently walled in Joshua's era. It is therefore customary in certain towns including HebronSafedTiberiasAcreAshdodAshkelonBeershevaBeit She'anBeit ShemeshGazaGush HalavHaifaJaffaLodRamlah and Shechem to celebrate Purim on the 14th and hold an additional megillah reading on the 15th with no blessings.[95][96] In the diaspora, Jews in BaghdadDamascus, Prague, and elsewhere celebrate Purim on the 14th and hold an additional megillah reading on the 15th with no blessings.[citation needed] Since today we are not sure where the walled cities from Joshua's time are, the only city that currently celebrates only Shushan Purim is Jerusalem; however, Rabbi Yoel Elizur has written that residents of Bet El and Mevo Horon should observe only the 15th, like Jerusalem.[97]

Outside of Jerusalem, Hasidic Jews don their holiday clothing on Shushan Purim, and may attend a tish and even give mishloach manot; however, this is just a custom and not a religious obligation.[citation needed]

Purim Meshulash[edit]

Purim Meshulash,[98] or the three-fold Purim, is a somewhat rare calendric occurrence that affects how Purim is observed in Jerusalem (and, in theory at least, in other cities that were surrounded by a wall in ancient times).[citation needed]

When Shushan Purim (Adar 15) falls on the Sabbath, the holiday is celebrated over a period of three days.[99] The megilla reading and distribution of charity takes place on the Friday (Adar 14), which day is called Purim dePrazos. The Al ha-Nissim prayer is only recited on Sabbath (Adar 15), which is Purim itself. The weekly Torah portion (Tetzaveh or Ki Tissa in regular years, Tzav in leap years) is read as usual, while the Torah portion for Purim is read for maftir, and the haftarah is the same as read the previous Shabbat, Parshat Zachor. On Sunday (Adar 16), called Purim Meshullash, mishloach manot are sent and the festive Purim meal is held.[100]

The minimum interval between occurrences of Purim Meshulash is three years (1974 to 1977; 2005 to 2008; will occur again 2045 to 2048). The maximum interval is 20 years (1954 to 1974; will occur again 2025 to 2045). Other possible intervals are four years (1977 to 1981; 2001 to 2005; 2021 to 2025; will occur again 2048 to 2052); seven years (1994 to 2001; will occur again 2123 to 2130); 13 years (1981 to 1994; 2008 to 2021; will occur again 2130 to 2143); and 17 years (1930 to 1947; will occur again 2275 to 2292).[citation needed]

Other Purims[edit]

Purim Katan[edit]

During leap years on the Hebrew calendar, Purim is celebrated in the second month of Adar. (The Karaites, however, celebrate it in the first month of Adar.) The 14th of the first Adar is then called Purim Katan ("Little Purim" in Hebrew) and the 15th is Shushan Purim Katan, for which there are no set observances but it has a minor holiday aspect to it. The distinctions between the first and the second Purim in leap years are mentioned in the Mishnah.[101] Certain prayers like Tachanun, Eil Erech Apayim (when 15 Adar I is a Monday or Thursday) and Lam'nazteach (Psalm 20) are omitted during the service. When 15th Adar I is on Shabbat, "Av Harachamim" is omitted. When either 13th or 15th Adar I falls on Shabbat, "Tzidkas'cha" is omitted at Mincha. Fasting is prohibited.[102]

Communal and familial Purims[edit]

Main article: Second Purim

Historically, many Jewish communities around the world established local "Purims" to commemorate their deliverance from catastrophe or an antisemitic ruler or edict. One of the best known is Purim Vinz, traditionally celebrated in Frankfurt one week after the regular Purim. Purim Vinz commemorates the Fettmilch uprising (1616–1620), in which one Vincenz Fettmilch attempted to exterminate the Jewish community.[103] According to some sources, the influential Rabbi Moses Sofer (the Chasam Sofer), who was born in Frankfurt, celebrated Purim Vintz every year, even when he served as a rabbi in Pressburg.

Rabbi Yom-Tov Lipmann Heller (1579–1654) of KrakówPoland, asked that his family henceforth celebrate a private Purim, marking the end of his many troubles, including having faced trumped-up charges.[104] Since Purim is preceded by a fast day, the rabbi also directed his descendants to have a (private) fast day, the 5th day of Tamuz, marking one of his imprisonments (1629), this one lasting for 40 days.[105][106]

The Jewish community of Hebron has celebrated two historic Purims, both from the Ottoman period. One is called Window Purim, or Purim Taka, in which the community was saved when a bag of money mysteriously appeared in a window, enabling them to pay off an extortion fee to the Ottoman Pasha. Many record the date being the 14th of the month, which corresponds the date of Purim on 14 Adar.[107][108][109] The other was called The Purim of Ibrahim Pasha, in which the community was saved during a battle.[107]

Other historic Purim celebrations in Jewish history have occurred in Yemen, Italy, Vilna and other locations.[110][111][112]

In modern history[edit]

Adolf Hitler banned and forbade the observance of Purim. In a speech made on 10 November 1938 (the day after Kristallnacht), the Nazi politician and prominent anti-Semite Julius Streicher surmised that just as "the Jew butchered 75,000 Persians" in one night, the same fate would have befallen the German people had the Jews succeeded in inciting a war against Germany; the "Jews would have instituted a new Purim festival in Germany".[113]

Nazi attacks against Jews were often coordinated with Jewish festivals. On Purim 1942, ten Jews were hanged in Zduńska Wola to "avenge" the hanging of Haman's ten sons.[114] In a similar incident in 1943, the Nazis shot ten Jews from the Piotrków ghetto.[115] On Purim eve that same year, over 100 Jewish doctors and their families were shot by the Nazis in Częstochowa. The following day, Jewish doctors were taken from Radom and shot nearby in Szydłowiec.[115] In 1942, on Purim, the Nazis murdered over 5000 Jews, mostly children, in the Minsk Ghetto. All of the victims were shot and buried alive by the Nazis.[116]

Still, the Nazi regime was defied and Purim was celebrated in Nazi ghettos and elsewhere.[117]

In an apparent connection made by Hitler between his Nazi regime and the role of Haman, Hitler stated in a speech made on 30 January 1944, that if the Nazis were defeated, the Jews could celebrate "a second Purim".[115] Indeed, Julius Streicher was heard to sarcastically remark "Purimfest 1946" as he ascended the scaffold after Nuremberg.[118][119] According to Rabbi Mordechai Neugroschel, there is a code in the Book of Esther which lies in the names of Haman's 10 sons. Three of the Hebrew letters—a tav, a shin and a zayin—are written smaller than the rest, while a vav is written larger. The outsized vav—which represents the number six—corresponds to the sixth millennium of the world since creation, which, according to Jewish tradition, is the period between 1240 and 2240 CE. As for the tav, shin and zayin, their numerical values add up to 707. Put together, these letters refer to the Jewish year 5707, which corresponds to the secular 1946–1947. In his research, Neugroschel noticed that ten Nazi defendants in the Nuremberg Trials were executed by hanging on 16 October 1946, which was the date of the final judgement day of Judaism, Hoshana Rabbah. Additionally, Hermann Göring, an eleventh Nazi official sentenced to death, committed suicide, parallel to Haman's daughter in Tractate Megillah.[120][121]

There is a tale in the Hasidic Chabad movement that Joseph Stalin died as a result of some metaphysical intervention of the seventh Chabad leader, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, during the recitation of a discourse at a public Purim farbrengen.[122] Stalin was suddenly paralyzed on 1 March 1953, which corresponds to Purim 1953, and died four days later. Due to Stalin's death, nationwide pogroms against Jews throughout the Soviet Union were averted, as Stalin's infamous doctors' plot was halted.[123][124]

The Cave of the Patriarchs massacre took place during Purim of 1994.[125] The Dizengoff Center suicide bombing took place on the eve of Purim killing 13 on 4 March 1996.[126]


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