mazume (muh-ZOO-muh) listen


  • n. The prelude to the Birkat Hamazon in which one participant leads a call and response with the other participants.

  • n. A group of at least three adult males who gather to recite the Birkat Hamazon.

  • n. Money, cash.

Example Sentences

  • "In what historians would later call The Great Depression, a nickel was a lot of mazuma and its economic power could buy a brand new Spaldeen..." (source).

  • "We have a mezumen, let's bentsh."

  • "Has he got mazuma!" (Rosten)

  • "If your son's thirteen, he can be the third person we need for making a Mezumen." (Glinert)

Languages of Origin

  • Textual Hebrew
  • Yiddish


  • TH מזמן mezuman, 'prepared, ready' > Y מזמן mezumn 'cash'

    • Who Uses This

      • Religious: Jews who are engaged in religious observance and have some Jewish education
      • Orthodox: Jews who identify as Orthodox and observe halacha (Jewish law)
      • Older: Jews who are middle-aged and older
      • Non-Jews: (words that have spread outside of Jewish networks)
      • Ashkenazim: Jews with Ashkenazi heritage


      • North America


      • The New Joys of Yiddish, by Leo Rosten and Lawrence Bush (New York, 2003[1968]).
      • Yiddish and English: A Century of Yiddish in America, by Sol Steinmetz (Tuscaloosa, 1986).
      • The Joys of Hebrew, by Lewis Glinert (New York, 1992).
      • Dictionary of Jewish Usage: A Popular Guide to the Use of Jewish Terms, by Sol Steinmetz (Lanham, MD, 2005).

      Alternative Spellings

      mezumn, mezumonim, mazumen, mezumen, mazuman, mezuman, mezumeh, mazumeh, mazuma, mezume, mazumah, mezumah, mezuma


  • With the after-meal blessings usage, it is often used in the phrase "to bentsh mezumen... The Hebrew-origin term for such a combination of three or more is a zimmun" (Steinmetz). In some non-Orthodox communities, the term can be used to refer to three or more Jewish adults, not just men.

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