The 17th of Tammuz: Meaning & Story | Aleph Beta

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The 17th of Tammuz

The Meaning of Tzom Tammuz

The 17th of Tammuz is the tragic start to the Three Weeks, a period of intense mourning that culminates with Tisha B'av – the day the Temple was destroyed. And if that's not enough, the Mishna lists a couple more calamities that took place on the 17th of Tammuz.

The first one was at Mount Sinai, when Moses shattered the tablets of the Ten Commandments upon seeing the Golden Calf. Then, during the Babylonian siege of the First Temple, it was the day the Kohanim ran out of animals to sacrifice for the daily offering. Generations later, on this very day, a Roman general named Apostamos publicly burned a Torah scroll. He then placed an idol in the most sacred room in the Temple.

Is it just a coincidence that all these terrible moments happened on the same day? Is the 17th of Tammuz just the Israelites’ bad luck day, or is there a common theme that runs throughout the events of this day?

Join us as we explore this tragic day in Jewish History – and never think of the 17 Tammuz the same way again.

Watch Rabbi Fohrman's series on Sinat Chinam, Baseless Hatred, here.

Learn more about the 17th of Tammuz, by checking out Shiva Asar B’Tammuz, The Three Weeks & Nine Days, and Tisha Bav!

Ami Silver







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