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The Talmud in Taanis 29a says:

משנכנס אב ממעטין בשמחה

From when Av enters we reduce our happiness

and

משנכנס אדר מרבין בשמחה

From when Adar enters we increase our happiness

Since we are not told when we are to stop increasing our happiness, presumably we are to continually increase our happiness until Rosh Chodesh Av, when we are told to begin reducing.

So what do we do to celebrate the day before Rosh Chodesh Av, the happiest day of the year?


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closed as off-topic by Monica Cellio Mar 8 '15 at 19:18

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  • 2
    ... But that implies that erev R"H Adar is the SADDEST day of the year! – Isaac Kotlicky Feb 23 '15 at 4:14
  • @IsaacKotlicky Indeed. – Y     e     z Feb 23 '15 at 4:16
  • Yes. I did notice that the assumption is based on the wrong ordering of the calendar. Av occurs BEFORE Adar. – DanF Feb 23 '15 at 4:51
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The day before rosh chodesh is of course Yom Kipur katan. The month of Av contains (of course) the fifteenth of Av. About those two days is written (end of mishnayos Taanis) "there were never such happy days for the Jews as the fifteenth of Av and [the preceding] Yom Kipur katan".

To celebrate, we dance in vineyards.

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I think you translated the term משנכנס incorrectly. It means "because" it entered, not "from the time" it entered.

So, the sadness and happiness lasts only one day each. Av "enters" on 1 Av, and because it entered, you reduce your happiness. Likewise, for Adar - it enters on only 1 day of the year (debatable during a leap year, but that's for a different discussion.) Because of its entry, you should increase happiness only on 1 Adar.

The increase or decrease occurs during the course of the day only. On 1 Adar, this is easy. You wake up in a grumpy mood. Then you realize it's Adar - hey, it can only get better that day.

Av - Feh! It's in the middle of the hot summer. You awaken - and you're already shvitzing. You'd like to cool off in the pool, then you realize ... Oy! It's the 9 Days. You can't swim. You'll definitely be sadder the rest of the day.

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