Shavuot (SHAH-voo-OT) listen
Shvues (SHVOO-is) listen
Shvies (SHVEE-is) listen


  • n. A Jewish holiday celebrating the anniversary of Moses receiving the Ten Commandments at Mount Sinai and the first harvest of spring.

Example Sentences

  • "I got everything ready for Shavuot: cheesecake, my shiur, and three cold brews to help me stay up all night."

Languages of Origin

  • Textual Hebrew
  • Yiddish


  • Heb. שָׁבוּעוֹת shavu'ot (originally meaning 'weeks', from the fact that Shavuot is the culmination of the seven weeks of the Omer) > Yid. שבֿועות shvues

    • Who Uses This

      • Religious: Jews who are engaged in religious observance and have some Jewish education


      • North America
      • Great Britain
      • South Africa
      • Australia / New Zealand


      • The New Joys of Yiddish, by Leo Rosten and Lawrence Bush (New York, 2003[1968]).
      • The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001).
      • 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

      Shavuos, Shvuos, Shvues, Shvies, Shvios, Shevuos, Feast of Weeks, Festival of First Fruits


  • On Shavuot, it is customary to eat dairy and read the Book of Ruth in synagogue.

    Also called Feast of Weeks or Festival of First Fruits.

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