• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

What does the word synagogue mean and how did synagogues come in to being?

Extracts from this document...


What does the word synagogue mean and how did synagogues come in to being? The word synagogue means a meeting place the synagogue is a Greek word for meeting or an assembly. The synagogue can also be called shul, which is a Yiddish word for school, because the synagogue is also a place to learn as well as meet and socialise and pray. The synagogue also helps Jews to share their problems and talk about their issues with their community and discuss them. Other names reflect its function too, for example it may also be called a Beth hatefilla (house of prayer) as it is also a place to go to worship and stick to the commandments of the torah. It is also known as Beth ha-hneset (house of assembly) and Beth ha-midrash (house of study) as Jews go to the synagogue mostly to study the torah. Jews also go to the synagogue for celebration, for example a lot of festivals and prayers, such as Yom Kippur. The first evidence of the synagogue is as far back as the third century BCE, this was not a synagogue but a temple founded in Egypt in Palestine. ...read more.


He uses additional symbols, called Trop or Ta'ameem. Like vowel points, they appear above or below the letters, and they act as musical symbols, indicating which of the several melodies should be used. The symbols can found in many printed editions of the Torah. There are different tunes for the Torah (Books of Moshe) and Haftarah (Prophets), and each of the writings. When not in use the torah is wrapped up in either silk or a velvet cover to protect it and symbolise its great importance. The Sefer torah includes the first five books of the Jewish scriptures of Moshe Rabaynu (Moses our teacher), which are: Genesis - Bereishit Exodus - Shmot Leviticus - Vayikra Numbers - Bamidbar Deuteronomy - Devarim The torah is written by hand with a special pen called quills many quills are used, A special quill is used only for G-d's four letter name. The ink is made up of a blend of powdered gallnuts, copper sulphate crystals, gum Arabic, and water. The torah is written on large peaces of Kosher Parchment called Klaf, the parchment comes from a kosher animal, this normally being a goat, bull, cow or deer. ...read more.


of natural water from the rain or rivers the water does not come from a tap, this is so as to feel like the water is alive and pure. The women only mostly use the mikveh, a women will use the mikveh at 3 occasions these being: * Before the women gets married to purify herself ready for the holy ceremony. * After a period before the women can have sex again with her husband, this is because a woman's period is thought to be dirty and unhygienic so she has to purify and cleanse herself and rid herself from all the dirtiness. * A women also uses the mikveh after the birth of a baby as the women feels dirty due to a lot of people touching and looking at her during child birth, so she attends the mikveh to purify herself. A man shall use the mikveh on Yom Kippur (day of atonement) but also a male orthodox Jew shall also attend a mikveh on the day of the Sabbath. When in the mikveh the person must be fully naked and have there body totally submerged into the water. The whole set up of the synagogue is based on how things were set up in the temple before its destruction. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Judaism section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Judaism essays

  1. Pesach is the biggest of the three pilgrim festivals, along with Sukkot and Shavuot ...

    Moses had doubts whether he was strong enough in the mind to carry out such a great mission and said "Who am I, that I should go to pharaoh, and that I shall lead forth the children of Israel out of Egypt?"

  2. Roles of the synagogue.

    Boys (and girls in Progressive Judaism) will attend Hebrew classes in preparation for their bar/bat mitzvah at which they will have to read a portion from the Torah. People study the Torah in discussion with others in a room called 'bet midrash'.

  1. Questions and answers on Synagogues.

    The interior has more care taken into it. One of the essential things is the area where the torahs are kept. It is an area that is usually concealed by a curtain to keep the torahs sacred, and is only uncovered during worship.

  2. What does the word 'synagogue' mean and how did synagogues come into being?

    The ark was made from acacia wood, overlaid with gold, with two golden cherubs, one representing God, and the other his people, thus representing their covenant. To make it portable, it had two rings, through which poles could be inserted, so it could be carried around.

  1. Describe some of the different ways in which the Sabbath is observed in Jewish ...

    Teenage Jews may be affected in a positive way, for they will be going through a difficult time in their lives and Sabbath may give them stability and a feeling that they do matter, for emotions can cloud what is true and some teenagers often feel depressed and lonely; religion

  2. Being Jewish in Britain today

    There are very large seasonal differences in the times of sunset in Britain because of the long distance between Britain and the Tropics. In the height of summer, the sun normally does not set after 9pm (or even later in Scotland), lives could be easier for the Jews at that

  1. Describe some of the different the ways that the Sabbath is observed in Jewish ...

    Once it is filled, it is passed round the family and every one of them will take a sip, even the children. The family wash their hands to sanctify themselves for something holy. Two loaves of bread are served with the meal (the Challah), they are covered with a white cloth.

  2. The Orthadox Synagogue

    The arc should be placed on the wall facing Jerusalem; or as close to its direction (east) as possible. However, if this cannot be possible due to structural difficulties, the community will turn in the direction of Jerusalem whilst praying.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work