Yom Kippur


Yom Kip·​pur ˌyōm-ki-ˈpu̇r How to pronounce Yom Kippur (audio)
ˌyäm- How to pronounce Yom Kippur (audio)
: a Jewish holiday observed with fasting and prayer on the 10th day of Tishri in accordance with the rites described in Leviticus 16

called also Day of Atonement

Examples of Yom Kippur in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Tickets are also available for Kol Nidre on Sept. 24 and Yom Kippur services and the Break the Fast on Sept. 25. Linda McIntosh, San Diego Union-Tribune, 8 Sep. 2023 When Israel’s intelligence agencies were accused of lapses that led to a surprise attack by Arab forces in the Yom Kippur War of 1973, Mr. Shavit helped coordinate the response of the Mossad’s director at the time to a government inquiry. Sam Roberts, New York Times, 8 Sep. 2023 In order to be sealed in the Book of Life for the new year, those of Jewish faith must repent and atone for their sins by fasting for roughly 27 hours—a Yom Kippur tradition. Heather Mayer Irvine, Country Living, 7 Sep. 2023 There’s a powerful and timely political message running through Golda, the new historical drama starring Helen Mirren as Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir during the 1973 Yom Kippur War, and that message is this: Smoking kills. David Klion, The New Republic, 1 Sep. 2023 This Yom Kippur evening service is called Kol Nidrei. Jamie Kravitz, Woman's Day, 28 Aug. 2023 The vitriol stemmed largely from her administration’s handling of the Yom Kippur War in 1973, a devastating conflict between Israel and a coalition of Arab states that resulted in thousands of deaths. Jenelle Riley, Variety, 25 Aug. 2023 But if the more troubling aspects of his own legacy are left pointedly off-screen, so is a deeper, longer view of the Arab-Israeli conflict, the hard lessons of the Yom Kippur War and the anguish that Israel would both endure and inflict in the decades to follow. Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times, 24 Aug. 2023 Victory came, but Israelis could neither forgive nor forget the cost of the Yom Kippur War, as the conflict would later be known. Sonja Anderson, Smithsonian Magazine, 24 Aug. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'Yom Kippur.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Hebrew yōm kippūr, literally, day of atonement

First Known Use

1735, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of Yom Kippur was in 1735

Dictionary Entries Near Yom Kippur

Cite this Entry

“Yom Kippur.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Yom%20Kippur. Accessed 21 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition

Yom Kippur

Yom Kip·​pur ˌyōm-ki-ˈpu̇r How to pronounce Yom Kippur (audio) ˌyȯm- How to pronounce Yom Kippur (audio)
: a Jewish holiday observed in September or October with fasting and prayer as ways of making up for sins

More from Merriam-Webster on Yom Kippur

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