Questions tagged [purim]

The holiday of Purim celebrates G-d's saving of the Jewish people from the genocidal plot of Haman, the Persian king's prime minister.

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Understanding the story of Rabba and Rav Zeira

The Gemarah (Megillah 7b)describes how Rabba and Rav Zeira celebrated Purim together. While intoxicated Rabba kills (slaughters) Rav Zeira. The next day he resurrects him. The next year Rabba invites ...
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18 votes
6 answers
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Why do we honor Charvona, specifically?

The song we sing after reading the Megilla on Purim, "Shoshanat Yaakov," concludes with "and may Charvona also be remembered favorably." According to the Megilla (Esther 7:9), all Charvona did was, ...
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Why aren't Purim and Channuka considered a violation of לֹא תֹסִפוּ?

It says in Devarim 4:2: לֹא תֹסִפוּ עַל הַדָּבָר אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי מְצַוֶּה אֶתְכֶם וְלֹא תִגְרְעוּ מִמֶּנּוּ לִשְׁמֹר אֶת מִצְוֹת יְ־הֹוָ־ה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי מְצַוֶּה אֶתְכֶם Translated: Do ...
18 votes
1 answer
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Why is Purim on Adar II during a leap year?

On a leap year, when a second Adar is added, we celebrate Purim on the second Adar. I would think it should be celebrated on the first Adar, since the Megillah goes out of its way in several places to ...
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17 votes
1 answer
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Can Purim Torah be heretical?

How far can one go with Purim Torah? Can one descend into heresy, so long as it is known that one is not serious?
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How to make Purim more female friendly?

At a recent Shabbat meal the conversation was about how Purim was a "guy holiday" where women felt like second class citizens, especially married women who often found themselves cooking the seuda, ...
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16 votes
2 answers
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What meaning do the names of the ten sons of Haman have?

Is there a meaning behind the names of the ten sons of Haman who were killed and hung (Esther 9:7-9)? They are: פַּרְשַׁנְדָּתָא Parshandasa דַּלְפוֹן Dalphon אַסְפָּתָא Aspasa פּוֹרָתָא Porasa ...
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3 answers
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Why not two days for all holidays?

For those outside of Israel the requirement is for two days of yom tov (and sometimes Rosh Chodesh), originally due to uncertainty and now due to tradition. But we don't do this for all holidays even ...
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15 votes
3 answers
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How did Mordechai get *all* the Jews of Shushan to agree to fast for three days?

My question is a bit long-winded so I'll summarize first: TL;DR How did Mordechai rouse the will of all the Jews of Shushan to agree to fast for three days? And further, why did Esther limit her ...
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14 votes
1 answer
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Thinking about Purim Torah in the bathroom

It is not permitted to think about Torah in the bathroom regularly, but what about Purim Torah, which is certainly not real Torah study, but still often refers to actual Torah? One might think that ...
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14 votes
1 answer
488 views

Moshe's Mask and Purim?

Is there a connection between Purim masks and the mask Moshe begins wearing at the end of Parshat Ki Tisa? (see Exodus 34:29-35) It seems too much of a coincidence that it's read near Purim for there ...
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14 votes
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Mishloach Manot must be "ready to eat" - from whose perspective?

From here: Every adult is required to send on the day of Purim at least two ready to eat food items to at least one friend. Is this requirement dependent on the sender or the recipient? In other ...
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13 votes
5 answers
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Were Haman's possessions hung on a tree?

In Maoz Tzur we say: רב בניו וקנייניו,‏ על העץ תלית His many sons and his possessions, You hung on a tree Were Haman's possessions really hung on a tree?
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How did Achashveirosh not know that Esther was Jewish?

In the Megila, Esther is taken from the house of Mordechai - who was clearly known as a Jew, and then Mordechai is constantly expressing interest in Esther: (2:11) ובכל יום ויום מרדכי מתהלך לפני ...
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3 answers
2k views

Where did the "different bracha for mishloach manos" idea come from?

Rambam and Shulchan Aruch say you can send two types of meat as mishloach manos on Purim. Yet somehow I (and many other people, apparently) were taught that the two different items have to be in two ...
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Are there any specific minhagim to celebrate Purim as a family?

וְהַיָּמִ֣ים הָאֵ֠לֶּה נִזְכָּרִ֨ים וְנַֽעֲשִׂ֝ים בְּכָל־דּ֣וֹר וָד֗וֹר מִשְׁפָּחָה֙ וּמִשְׁפָּחָ֔ה מְדִינָ֥ה וּמְדִינָ֭ה וְעִיר וָעִיר וִימֵ֞י הַפּוּרִ֣ים הָאֵ֗לֶּה לֹ֤א יַֽעַבְרוּ֙ מִתּ֣וֹךְ ...
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13 votes
2 answers
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Are you Yotzei Mikrah Megillah if you're spacing out?

The Mishnah in Megillah (2:2) says that one who reads the megillah while semi-asleep ('מתנמנם') is yotzei. The gemara comments (18b): מתנמנם יצא וכו': היכי דמי מתנמנם אמר רב אשי נים ולא נים תיר ולא ...
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13 votes
3 answers
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Why did Haman change his mind and decide to immediately hang Mordechai?

In Esther 3:6, it states that Haman was embarrassed to harm Mordechai alone, so he casts lots to decide which date to kill the entire Jewish people. In 5:14, Haman builds a special gallows for ...
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13 votes
3 answers
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What was the attitude of Rabbonim regarding Purim Torah?

Purim Torah seems to be a two sided concept. On one hand, many people do it for many years (for example, Maseches Purim was published in 1871). On the other hand, it seems to be a Bizayon HaTorah (...
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12 votes
4 answers
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Is cross-dressing permitted on Purim and if so why?

As part of dressing in costume on Purim is a person allowed to put on clothes normally worn by the opposite gender? If so, where does this heter come from in the face of the biblical prohibition ...
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12 votes
2 answers
270 views

Why no addition to me'ein shalosh for Purim (and Chanukka)?

We add a paragraph to birkat hamzon for Purim (and for Chanukka). Why is there no phrase added to the me'ein shalosh (the bracha acharona) for Purim (and Chanukka)?
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12 votes
4 answers
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Walled cities for Purim other than Jerusalem

The holiday of Purim is unique in that some locations celebrate it on different days. The rule is: if the city was walled at the time of Joshua's conquest of the Land of Israel then they celebrate on ...
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12 votes
4 answers
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Matanos L'Evyonim

What constitutes a poor person? If someone is a student, and they are living off of loans without a current income, are they considered poor and could one fulfill the mitzvah of Matanos L'Evyonim by ...
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11 votes
8 answers
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Is there any source that says that women should / should not get drunk on Purim?

The prevalent מנהג is that women do not get drunk on Purim. I assume this due to tznius (modesty) concerns. Is there any ancient or recent source that explicitly discusses women not/yes drinking on ...
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11 votes
2 answers
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Why didn't Achashveirosh reward Mordechai immediately?

Esther tells Achashveirosh in the name of Mordechai of a plot to assassinate him (Achashveirosh). They investigate, and stop the would-be assassins. And then... nothing? Why didn't Achashveirosh ...
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11 votes
2 answers
217 views

May I change Megillot in the middle of reading Purim Megillah?

I read the majority of Megillat Esther in my shul. At night, a few teenagers like to read a few verses from the Megillah, as well. Last year, I used my personal Megillah. When one of the boys came up ...
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10 votes
8 answers
493 views

What would you really, actually like to receive (give?) for Mishloach Manot on Purim? [closed]

Let's put it this way: what would you actually like to receive in your Mishloach Manot on Purim? (I'm trying to figure out what to put in there would actually be most appreciated?) I feel like ...
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10 votes
2 answers
635 views

Can a woman write a megillah?

I know that a woman can't write a sefer torah. What about Megillat Esther? If a female soferet wrote a Megillah Esther, would it be kosher?
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10 votes
2 answers
288 views

How did the Sages know that Jerusalem had a wall in the times of Joshua?

The criterion for whether a city celebrates Purim on 14 Adar or Shushan Purim on 15 Adar is whether it was walled in the times of Joshua (about 3300 years ago). (Well, Shushan itself is an exception, ...
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10 votes
3 answers
257 views

Walled from the times of Joshua: Why Joshua?

The Halacha is that those who live in a city that was walled in the times of Yehoshuah reads on a different day (Rambam Hilchos Megillah 1:4-5). The question is why from Yehoshuah (Joshua) when the ...
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10 votes
2 answers
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May one dress up as Santa on Purim?

Is there anything wrong with children or adults wearing Santa Claus costumes on Purim? While on Christmas itself it might involve some sort of issur of participating in or celebrating of a non-Jew ...
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9 votes
2 answers
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When did Achashverosh stop rounding up fair maidens?

So first Achashverosh was married to Vashti. Then no more Vashti. Then he's rounding up all the fair maidens in the land to um, "meet" them, one per night, but they're still stuck in one of his royal ...
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9 votes
2 answers
252 views

Was Haman so discourteous as to bother the king's sleep?

There are 2 related parts to this question: 1) Haman is annoyed with Mordechai and discusses with Zeresh, his wife and his wise advisers what to do. In Esther 5:14, they tell him to make a tall tree, ...
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8 votes
5 answers
366 views

Can you use Liquor to fulfill Ad Dlo Yoda?

Can you use liquor instead of wine for the mitzvah of Ad Dlo Yoda? Is there any Posek who allows you to be yotzeh specifically with Liquor?
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8 votes
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675 views

If sleeping suffices for "ad d'lo yada", why drink?

The Shulchan Aruch (OC 695:2) writes: One must become drunk on Purim until he doesn't know the difference between "arur Haman" and "baruch Mord'chay". The Rama (ad loc.) adds: But some say that ...
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8 votes
3 answers
354 views

Tannis Esther reason

Why do we fast on Tannis Esther? In memory of what historical occurrence?
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8 votes
2 answers
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Why do we not say Hallel on Purim?

Why do we not say Hallel on Purim?
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8 votes
4 answers
377 views

Microphone for Meggilah

Can one be Yotzeh Meggilah on Skype or webcast or through a microphone or telephone is there a difference between each? Does a Hearing Aid disqualify a person from being Yotzeh the Laining?
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8 votes
2 answers
380 views

Did Esther eat at the first feast she made for the king and Haman?

Esther 5:1,5:4 says that Esther made the first feast on the third day of the fast. Earlier (4:16), Esther tells Mordechai that she will also fast for three days. Did she eat at the feast, or was ...
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8 votes
2 answers
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Connection Between Purim and Yom Kippur

I heard recently that the Arizal writes that Purim is a higher level holiday than Yom Kippur. In fact, Yom Kippur is Yom KiPurim, a day like Purim. What is the connection between the two? They seem ...
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8 votes
2 answers
220 views

Combining Purim meal with Friday night meal

Can you have a joint purim seuda and friday night meal if you started before skiah on the Friday. What are the implications - re continuing a meal into shabbos re benching, lighting candles, davening, ...
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8 votes
1 answer
138 views

"Sending" mishloach manot by serving them

The obligation on Purim is to "send" 2 foods to another person. The Mishna Brurah (Hilchot Megillah 695:4) says that one may exchange se'udah food with a neighbor and is yotzei (21) even if (and I ...
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8 votes
2 answers
210 views

Why did it take 2 days in the city of Shushan?

The reason Purim is celebrated for two days in a "walled city" is that the Megilat Esther says the Jews of the city of Shushan (the capital) needed/took an extra day to fight for their survival. My ...
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8 votes
1 answer
267 views

Is Shushan Purim observed (in theory) in Shush, Iran?

Shushan, Achashveirosh's capital, is identified with the modern Iranian archaeological site of Susa. A city, Shush, has been established nearby. In modern-day Shush, (if any Jews lived there), what ...
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8 votes
2 answers
308 views

"לְחֹדֶשׁ שְׁנֵים עָשָׂר" in the Megillah and Al Hanisim

As I was reading Al Hanisim this year, something odd struck me "לְחֹדֶשׁ שְׁנֵים עָשָׂר" - the 12th month. What struck me was that this year is a leap year so we actually celebrated Purim in the ...
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8 votes
2 answers
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On Purim, is it permitted to read an English translation while listening to the Megillah reading?

On Purim, is it permitted to read an English translation while listening to the Megillah reading? I know it is a mitzvah to listen to every word of the Megillah reading. However, I don't understand ...
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8 votes
0 answers
121 views

The Permissibility of Purim Torah [duplicate]

Saying Purim Torah, funny (or unfunny) puns based off a misreading of a verse, is an age old tradition in the spirit of Mishenichnas Adar Marbin Besimcha. However, the Gemara in Sanhedrin 99b states: ...
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7 votes
2 answers
2k views

What's a Grammen?

A few years ago I participated in a Purim Se'udah (feast) at which rounds of humorous poetry were written and then recited in a sing-song chant. I believe they're called Grammen. It was fun, and the ...
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7 votes
2 answers
242 views

How old was Mordechai in the Megillah?

I have been trying to calculate Mordechai's age, and according to my estimates he must have been around 100, if not older, when the Purim saga begins. Are there any textual sources which provide the ...
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7 votes
2 answers
181 views

Parshas Zachor before Purim?

Prior to the story of Purim was there a special yearly reading of Parshas Zachor? At which point in history was it instituted to read Parshas Zachor before Purim?
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