Alternative Spellings

avelus, avaylus, aveylus, aveiles, aveles, avayles, aveilut, avelut, avaylut, aveylut, oveilus, ovelus, ovaylus, oveylus, oveiles, oveles, ovayles, aveyles, oveyles


  • Mourning (Glinert)

Example Sentences

  • "Avelim—those who have recently lost a next of kin—traditionally find expression for their avelut by observing seven days' confinement at home ('sitting shiva'), forgoing new clothes and musical entertainment, and reciting the kaddish prayer." (Glinert)

Languages of Origin

Textual Hebrew


אבלות avelut '(period of) mourning'

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


The Joys of Hebrew, by Lewis Glinert (New York, 1992).
The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001)


Traditionally, one is in avelut for 11 months after losing a parent, or 30 days (called shloshim meaning 'thirty') for another relative.

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