• n. A last will, testament.

Example Sentences

  • "You should have heard Uncle Simon's tsavoe!" (source)

Languages of Origin

  • Textual Hebrew
  • Yiddish


  • TH צוואה tsava'a > Y צװאה tsavoe

    • Who Uses This

      • Older: Jews who are middle-aged and older
      • Ashkenazim: Jews with Ashkenazi heritage


      • North America


      • Yiddish and English: A Century of Yiddish in America, by Sol Steinmetz (Tuscaloosa, 1986).
      • The Joys of Hebrew, by Lewis Glinert (New York, 1992).

      Alternative Spellings

      tsavoeh, tzavoe, tzavoeh, tsavaa, tsava'a, tzava'a, tzavaa


  • plural: 'tsavoes' or 'tsava'ot'

    "Tsava'a is from the same root as mitzvah...It's hard to imagine anyone publishing an anthology of last wills and testaments, and even harder to imagine anyone wanting to read it, but that's precisely what people have often done with Jewish tsava'ot. The tsava'a was traditionally an occasion for a father to leave a compelling moral message to his offspring, and collections of tsava'ot make stirring reading today, if you like that sort of thing." (Glinert)

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