Conservative Judaism

Alternative Spellings

Conservative movement


  • originally known as "historical positive Judaism," a denomination that combines observance with an idea of "halachic process." See further comments below.

Example Sentences

  • "I belong to a Conservative synagogue because I like a service with more Hebrew, but not too much Hebrew, and I want Mussaf, although I don't really want to rebuild the Temple, and I want my daughters to be able to take the Bat Cohen Aliyah."

Languages of Origin



"conserving" historical Judaism, as opposed to "reforming" it

Who Uses This

Jews: Jews of diverse religious backgrounds and organizational involvements
Non-Jews: (words that have spread outside of Jewish networks)


North America


Dictionary of Jewish Usage: A Guide to the Use of Jewish Terms, by Sol Steinmetz (Lanham, MD, 2005).
The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001)


It was the dominant Jewish movement in America until it was recently overtaken by Reform. It has a reputation of being academic and appealing to the children of Eastern European immigrants. It became egalitarian several decades ago, and has more recently accepted homosexual clergy. Known as Masorti outside the United States.

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