Alternative Spellings

gezera, gezerah, gzerah, g'zerah, gazerah, gezeirah, gzeirah, g'zeirah, gazeirah, gezeyrah, gzeyrah, g'zeyrah, gazeyrah, gzera, g'zera, gazera, gezeira, gzeira, g'zeira, gazeira, gezeyra, gzeyra, g'zeyra, gazeyra


  • In Jewish law, a prohibition enacted by the Sages as a measure to protect religious observance under changed conditions.
  • "evil decree" (Steinmetz)
  • "An authoritative command either to perform or to refrain from performing a particular act" (Weiser)
  • "an addition to a previously existing precept" (Weiser)

Example Sentences

  • "A gezerah was instituted when occasion demanded." (
  • "According to the gzeira, you need to wait longer before you make havdala." (Weiser)

Languages of Origin

Textual Hebrew


גזרה gezera 'decree'

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)


North America


Yiddish and English: A Century of Yiddish in America, by Sol Steinmetz (Tuscaloosa, 1986).
Frumspeak: The First Dictionary of Yeshivish, by Chaim Weiser (Northvale, 1995).
Dictionary of Jewish Usage: A Guide to the Use of Jewish Terms, by Sol Steinmetz (Lanham, MD, 2005).

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