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Home > Holidays > Shabbat's Guide to Shabbat
Observing Shabbat

Shabbat: Glossary

Aishet Chayil - "A Woman of Valor" from Proverbs, recited by a husband to his wife.

Birkat Hamazon - Grace after meals.

Cholent - A traditional Shabbat lunch consisting often of stew meat, potatoes, carrots, beans and barley.

Daven - Pray.

Havdalah - The short service done at home concludes the Sabbath. It is done using a cup of wine, a multi-wicked candle, and sweet-smelling spices.

Kiddush - The blessing that sanctifies Shabbat. Kiddush recalls God's decision not to create on Shabbat, and the Jewish people's status as free individuals who are able to observe this day of rest.

Maariv - The evening service.

Manna - The food God provided when the Israelites fled from Egypt, which tasted like whatever food they wanted. They were provided with two portions on Friday so they wouldn't have to gather it on Shabbat.

Minchah - The afternoon service.

Mishnah - A collection of rabbinic opinions and legal rulings that comprises a major part of the Talmud, the "oral law."

Mitzvah - (Plural, mitzvot) A commandment.

Muktzah - Something that should not be done or handled on the Shabbat, something that should be left aside for the rest of the week.

Musaf - A late morning service recited on Shabbat, on holidays, and on Rosh Chodesh (the first day of the new month).

Shabbat or Shabbos - The Sabbath, a day of rest Jews observe from sunset Friday until dark Saturday night.

Shacharit - The morning service.

Shul - A synagogue.

Z'mirot - Songs in Yiddish, Hebrew or English.

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