Thursday, August 03, 2006


The Fast of the Fifth Month 5766

Jerusalem Old City/Tower of DavidOn the Fast of the Fifth Month (Zekharyah 8:19), or Tisha b'Av as it is now commonly known, Torah study is forbidden. One of the few exceptions to this prohibition is the Book of Lamentations (Mishnah Torah, Hil. Ta'aniyoth 5:11), which is also publicly chanted on this day in many communities.

א אֵיכָה יָשְׁבָה בָדָד, הָעִיר רַבָּתִי עָם--הָיְתָה, כְּאַלְמָנָה; רַבָּתִי בַגּוֹיִם, שָׂרָתִי בַּמְּדִינוֹת--הָיְתָה, לָמַס ב בָּכוֹ תִבְכֶּה בַּלַּיְלָה, וְדִמְעָתָהּ עַל לֶחֱיָהּ--אֵין-לָהּ מְנַחֵם, מִכָּל-אהֲבֶיהָ: כָּל-רֵעֶיהָ בָּגְדוּ בָהּ, הָיוּ לָהּ לְאֹיְבִים

איכה א:א-ב

1 Oh, how she sits alone. The city* that was full of people has become like a widow. The great among the nations, the princess among the provinces, has become tributary! 2 Surely she weeps at night, her tears upon her cheeks; she has no comfort from her lovers; all her friends have betrayed her, they have become her enemies.

-Lamentations 1:1-2


No comfort, even from those who love her? Friends betraying her? Becoming her enemies?

Sound familiar?


Hebrew texts of the Tana"kh, Mishnah, Talmud Yerushalmi, Talmud Bavli, & Mishnah Torah are available on-line at Mechon Mamre.

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