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Top 5 High Holiday Hebrew Words

Hebrew phrases you need to know for the חַגִּים - Chagim in Israel.

A man holding a white chicken in one hand and a siddur in the other

01 Repentance- תְּשׁוּבָה

Pronounced: "teshuva"

The Jewish high holidays are all about repentance. During this time, Jews are supposed to focus on improving themselves to be better, kinder people in the upcoming year.

02 Apples and honey- תַּפּוּחִים וּדְבַשׁ

Pronounced: "tapuhim v'devash"

You must eat this on Rosh Hashana! Apples and honey are a food traditionally eaten on this holiday to ensure a sweet new year!

03 Weekdays of the Festival- חֹל הַמּוֹעֵד

Pronounced: "hol hamoed"

The Weekdays of the Festival are the non-holy days in between the first and last holiday of the festival of Sukkot. There is no school during this time, and many people in Israel use this time for vacation with family and friends.

04 Custom -מִנְהָג

Pronounced: "minhag"

Different people have a different minhagim (plural) that they keep. One example is that on Rosh Hashana, people make round-shaped challah to represent the circle of a year. Another minhag on Rosh Hashana is to have the head of a fish on the table for the festival meal. Why? Rosh means head - and it's written "may we be heads, not tails." In other words, may we be leaders and not followers in the upcoming year.

05 (Have a) good and sweet year- שָׁנָה טוֹבָה וּמְתוּקָה

Pronounced: "Shana tovah umetukah"

Shana tovah umetukah is the greeting used to wish others a Happy New Year in Israel! We don't just want a good New Year; we hope it will be sweet as well!



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