mitz·​vah | \ ˈmits-və How to pronounce mitzvah (audio) \
plural mitzvoth\ ˈmits-​ˌvōt How to pronounce mitzvah (audio) , -​ˌvōth , -​ˌvōs \ or mitzvahs

Definition of mitzvah

1 : a commandment of the Jewish law
2 : a meritorious or charitable act

Examples of mitzvah in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In Judaism, tzedakah—roughly, charity—is a moral obligation, a mitzvah. Magda Teter, The New York Review of Books, "When Poverty Became Profane," 13 Apr. 2021 The program is presented by Park Synagogue, and attendees will be doing a mitzvah for the Cleveland Jewish community. Joan Rusek, cleveland, "Take a bite out of hunger and taste round-the-world Passover dishes: Valley Views," 27 Feb. 2021 The shofar is an ancient musical horn typically made of a ram's horn and is the central mitzvah, or observance, of Rosh Hashanah. Evan Casey, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "The new Chabad of Waukesha-Brookfield facility is hosting Rosh Hashanah service to mark the Jewish new year," 17 Sep. 2020 In June, the facility reopened with members following guidelines including temperature checks and the mitzvah (good deed) of mask wearing. Joan Elovitz Kazan, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Treats symbolize hope for sweetness as Jewish community prepares for a socially distant Rosh Hashanah," 12 Sep. 2020 Fasting on Yom Kippur is a mitzvah, or commandment. Kelsey Hurwitz, Woman's Day, "When Is Yom Kippur 2020? Everything You Need to Know About the High Holy Day," 17 July 2020 Following the service, everyone is invited to stay for a festive oneg (reception) with latkes and a mitzvah opportunity of assembling bus pass kits for the homeless. cleveland, "Celebrating Chanukah at Fairmount Temple; Jewish Federation’s Annual Campaign Closing Celebration; more: Press Run," 29 Nov. 2019 Thank you, God, for the mitzvah [commandment] of lighting the candles. Mary Beth Mccauley, The Christian Science Monitor, "‘Remember the sabbath’: How one family lives the Fourth Commandment," 8 Nov. 2019 These three different messages of kol are echoed in the mitzvah of shofar. Rabbi Avi Weiss,, "The voice of the shofar is loud and clear," 23 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mitzvah.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of mitzvah

1723, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for mitzvah

Hebrew miṣwāh

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The first known use of mitzvah was in 1723

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Last Updated

22 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Mitzvah.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 May. 2021.

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