averah (uh-VEY-rah) listen
averah (ah-vey-RAH) listen
aveyre (uh-VEY-reh) listen


  • n. Religious transgression (Glinert: "An aveirah is an infringement on the Torah, the opposite of a mitzvah.").

Example Sentences

  • "Speaking gossip is an aveirah."

Languages of Origin

  • Textual Hebrew
  • Yiddish


  • Heb עבירה averá, Yiddish עבֿירה avéyre

    • Who Uses This

      • Orthodox: Jews who identify as Orthodox and observe halacha (Jewish law)


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


      • 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

      aveirah, aveyra, avera


  • a sin of lust or uncontrollable emotion, something one would not ordinarily do, committed against one's better judgment. It is a sin done knowingly, not in brazen defiance of G-d's will, but rather because a "spirit of foolishness" came over the sinner.

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