The cultures and traditions of the Sephardim—those Jews whose roots and ancestry date specifically to pre-16th-century Spanish/Iberian Peninsula Jewry, mostly under Moslem rule. Following the Expulsion from Spain in 1492, and shortly thereafter from Portugal, some of these Jews resettled in Amsterdam and, in the 17th century, in London. But the majority returned to the then-hospitable Moslem realm comprising Mediterranean countries of North Africa, Greece, and Turkey; parts of what is today Bulgaria; and parts of Syria. Smaller groups went under papal protection to Tuscany and areas in southern France. The first American Jewish communities and synagogues were western Sephardi and remained exclusively so until the 19th century.
The rebbe’s leftovers, which, in some Hassidic traditions, are customarily distributed among his followers, who consider it an honor and meritorious to consume them.
The biblical trumpet/clarion-like wind instrument, usually made from a ram’s horn, should be defined more generically as a ritual horn of ancient Israel. Modern Jewry’s chief acquaintance with the shofar derives from the religious association with its ceremonial position in the Rosh Hashana morning service, and in the Yom Kippur evening service, signaling the end of the annual High Holy Days celebration.
A market town in Eastern Europe (Poland, the Ukraine, etc.) with a minimum population of 5,000–10,000. The word is a diminutive of the Yiddish shtot or the German stadt, meaning “city”—in this case, a small- to medium-size city.