yahrzeit

Pronunciations

yahrzeit (YAHR-tzeit)
yahrzeit (YOHR-tzeit)

Definitions

  • n. The anniversary of a person's death, generally marked by relatives in some way.

Example Sentences

  • "On my mother's yartzeit we light a candle to remember her."

Languages of Origin

  • Yiddish

Etymology

  • יאָרצײַט yortsayt 'lit. time of year; anniversary of a death' (Yiddish: yor = year; tsayt = time). The spelling in English is influenced by German orthographic norms.

    • Who Uses This

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

      Regions

      • North America

      Dictionaries

      • 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).
      • Dictionary of Jewish Usage: A Popular Guide to the Use of Jewish Terms, by Sol Steinmetz (Lanham, MD, 2005).

      Alternative Spellings

      yahrtzeit, yortzait, yortseit, yortsayt, yortzayt, yartzeit, yortsayt, yahrtzeit, jahrzeit

Notes

  • also used in the phrase "yahrzeit candle"

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