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Fast of Tammuz

June 27

Fast of Tammuz

The fast of the 17th of the Hebrew month of Tammuz, is the start of a three-week mourning period for the destruction of Jerusalem and the two Holy Temples.

According to the Mishnah, five calamities befell the Jewish people on this day:

  1. Moses broke the two tablets of stone on Mount Sinai;
  2. The daily tamid offering ceased to be brought;
  3. During the Roman siege of Jerusalem, the city walls were breached, leading to the destruction of the Second Temple on Tisha B’Av;
  4. Prior to Bar Kokhba’s revolt, Roman military leader Apostomus burned a Torah scroll;
  5. An idol was erected in the Temple.

The Seventeenth of Tammuz occurs forty days after the Jewish holiday of Shavuot. Moses ascended Mount Sinai on Shavuot and remained there for forty days. The Children of Israel made the Golden Calf on the afternoon of the sixteenth of Tammuz when it seemed that Moses was not coming down when promised. Moses descended the next day (forty days by his count), saw that the Israelites were violating many of the laws he had received from God, and smashed the tablets.

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Date:
June 27
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