Beis Shammai


Beis Shammai (BEYS shah-MEYE) listen


  • n. The House of Shammai; Shammai's school of thought.

  • adj. Behaving in an exceptionally harsh manner (especially in religious contexts).

  • n. An act of behaving in an exceptionally harsh manner (especially in religious contexts).

Example Sentences

  • "Wow, Rebbi really went Beis Shammai on Yitzy and threw him out of shiur."

  • "You better wear a white shirt to shul or I'll pull a Beis Shammai on you."

  • "Beit Shammai said that one cannot relinquish the opportunity to do so and must even go back if he left, which is valuable for the spiritually advanced." (source)

  • "While for me, drunk driving is just a bad thing to do, many others had personal experiences with misbehavior and loss in their communities and wanted to be as strict as Beit Shammai ever was." (source)

Languages of Origin

  • Textual Hebrew


  • בית שמאי 'House of Shammai' which is one of two schools of thought which had vigorous debates on religious matters with the House of Hillel; this usage comes from the fact that in these debates, Shammai's stances were known to be more strict

    • 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


      • None

      Alternative Spellings

      Bays Shammai, Beys Shammai, Bais Shammai, Bais Shamai, Beys Shamai, Bays Shamai, Beis Shamai, Beit Shammai, Bait Shammai, Beyt Shammai, Bayt Shammai, Bayt Shamai, Beyt Shamai, Bait Shamai, Beit Shamai


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