Nissan

February 10, 2014

[1 Nissan]

  • The erection of the Mishkan was completed. Moshe completed the consecration rites of Aaron and his sons. Aaron performed the first sacrificial rites. Death of Nadav and Avihu, sons of Aaron.
  • King Hezekiah commenced the reconsecration of the Temple.
  • Cyrus was crowned “King of Babylonia and King of all lands, “538B.C.E. The crowning of King Cyrus made possible the restoration of an autonomous Jewish community in Eretz Yisrael and the rebuilding of the Beit HaMikdash. Ezra, who was to restore the primacy of religion in the life of the Jewish community, left Babylonia on the anniversary of Cryus’ coronation.
  • The plot of Bigtan and Teresh to assassinate Achashveirosh was discovered by Mordechai.
  • Ezra and his followers left Bavel for Jerusalem, 457 B.C.E.

[2 Nissan]

  • Moshe performed the first para aduma rite.
  • Jews of Mayence, Germany, were massacred, 1283.
  • King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella signed a decree expelling Jews from Spain, 1492.
  • Anti-Jewish riots broke out in Jerusalem, 1881.

[3 Nissan]

  • A decree expelling Jews form Spain and Sicily was issued, 1492.
  • In the Children’s Action of 1944, Nazis raided the Kovno ghetto and removed all children for execution. Anti-Jewish persecutions were generally aimed at the people as a whole, regardless of age. There were instances, however, where children were singled out as the victims of a discriminating decree. Pharaoh’s order to drown all male infants was the earliest example of this type of legislation.

[4 Nissan]

  • Anti-Jewish riots broke out in Dabrowa, Poland, 1938.
  • A convoy of physicians, scientists, and guards, totaling 75 people, was ambushed on the way to Mt. Scopus, 1948.

[5 Nissan]

  • Yehoshua sent scouts to survey Jericho and the surrounding territory
  • Rehovot was attacked by Arabs, 1893.
  • 2500 Jews of Lublin were massacred and the rest of the Jews were deported, 1942.

[6 Nissan]

  • The town of Afula was founded, 1925.

[7 Nissan]

  • Jews of York, England, committed mass suicide rejecting an invitation to submit to baptism, 1190.
  • Hebrew University opened in Jerusalem, 1925.

[8 Nissan]

  • The feast of Achashveirosh, which lasted for 180 days, came to and end.
  • Yahrzeit of Rabbi Eliyahu Shapira of Prague, author of Eliyahu Rabba, 1712.
  • First rabbinic opposition to Hasidism was announced in Vilna, 1772. A cheirem, endorsed by the Vilna Gaon, was published in 1777 and again in 1781.

[9 Nissan]

  • 57 Jews were killed in Bury St. Edmunds, England, 1190.
  • Anti-Jewish riots broke out in Seville, Spain, 1391. (The riots took place on Ash Wednesday and initiated a wave of violence which spread rapidly over the Iberian Peninsula, claiming 50,000 victims before the year was up. A substantial number of Jews escaped with their lives only at the cost of converting. This marked the emergence of Marranos, said to number 200,000, in the kingdoms of Aragon and Castile. They were to provide countless martyrs in the Old and New Worlds for centuries to come.
  • Jews of Vienna, Austria, were accused of profaning the host. Many of those who refused to embrace Christianity were burned at the stake, 1421.

[10 Nissan]

  • Yahrzeit of Miriam. The mobile well, which supplied water to the Jews in the desert, dried up.
  • The Jews, led by Yehoshua, crossed the Jordan and erected 12 monuments at Gilgal. Tradition also puts Yehoshua’s composing of the second paragraph of Birkat haMazon.

[11 Nissan]

  • Brit Mila of the generation of the Wilderness upon entering Eretz Yisrael.
  • Yahrzeit of the Ramban, 1270.
  • Yahrzeit of the SH’LA 51270. HaKadosh, 1630.

[12 Nissan]

  • Ezra and his followers departed from the River Ahava on their way to Jerusalem, 457 B.C.E.

[13 Nissan]

  • Haman published decree calling for the extermination of all the Jews of the Persian Empire. Esther ordered the 3-day fast for the Jews of Shushan
  • Rav Ovadya Bartinuro arrived in Jerusalem, 1488.
  • Yahrzeit of Rav Yoseph Caro, 1575.
  • Yahrzeit of Rabbi Menahem Mendel of Lubavich, the Zemach Zedek, 1866.

[14 Nissan]

  • Kayin and Hevel offer their sacrifices to G-d.
  • Fast of the firstborns.
  • The first Korban Pesach by the Jews in Egypt.
  • Naomi and Ruth arrived in Beit Lechem.
  • Warsaw ghetto uprising broke out, 1943.

[15 Nissan]

  • Sara was brought to the house of Par’o. G-d made a covenant withAvraham. The angels appeared to inform Avraham that a son would be born to Sara. Birth of Yitzchak. Yitzchak summoned Eisav and requested that he prepare a tasty meal for him and receive his blessing. [This tradition was apparently based on the wording of Isaac's blessing: "May G-d give you of the dew of heaven". The Talmud fixed Nisan 15 as the beginning of the harvest season and the end of the rainy season. Thereafter rain is harmful but dew is beneficial.
  • Moses saw the burning bush.
  • The Egyptian first-born were slain.
  • First day of Pesach.
  • The beginning of the Exodus.
  • The Assyrian army of Sancherev, which had threatened Jerusalem, was destroyed.
  • Yahrzeit of Job.
  • Vashti was executed by order of Achashveirosh.
  • Esther appeared before Achashveirosh to plead for the Jews.
  • The defenders of Masada committed suicide, 73 C.E.
  • The last resistance to the Roman conquest of Eretz Yisrael came to an end.
  • An order to seize of all Portuguese Jewish children, ages 4-14 for forced conversion, 1497.
  • The Vilna Gaon was born, 1720.

[16 Nissan]

  • Birth of Levi, third son of Yaakov.
  • Jews had crossed the Jordan into Eretz Yisrael. The Omer was offered for the first time by the Jews in Eretz Yisrael.
  • King Saul’s seven sons were killed.
  • Chizkiyahu HaMelech completed the rededication of the Beit HaMikdash.
  • Haman was hanged. Mordecai was appointed chief minister to replace Haman.
  • The alleged murder of William of Norwich, led to the first charge of ritual murder against Jews in the Middle Ages. The timing of ritual libels with Pesach is no coincidence.
  • Arabs killed and wounded many Jews in Jerusalem, 1920.

[17 Nissan]

  • Solomon Etting, prominent businessman of Lancaster, Pa., was the first native American Jew to receive a limited authorization to function as a shohet, 1782. [The early American Jewish community, though mainly traditional, was too small to train its own religious functionaries and too distant to attract European scholars.]

[18 Nissan]

  • Par’o was informed that the Jews had escaped.
  • A number of London Jews suffered martyrdom following ritual charges, 1279.
  • Purim of the Bomb was celebrated by the Jews of Fossano, south of the Alps, to commemorate their escape from massacre, 1796.

[19 Nissan]

  • Par’o set out in pursuit of the Jews.
  • Adolf Hitler made his first appearance on the anniversary of the day on which the first anti-Semite in Jewish history set out in pursuit of the Jewish people.
  • Yahrzeit of Rabbi Menahem Zemba, HY”D. He was killed in the Warsaw ghetto, 1943.
  • Yahrzeit of Rabbi Meir Bar-Ilan, leader of Mizrachi, scholar and author, 1949.

[20 Nissan]

  • Par’o and his pursing army caught up with the Jews encamped at Pi-HaChirot by the sea.
  • Yahrzeit of Rav Hai Gaon, the last of the geonim of Pumpedita, 1038. [The death of Rav Hai Gaon brought to a close the glorious epoch of Babylonian Jewry. For more than eight centuries Babylonia was the center of Jewish culture and creative scholarship. Its leaders provided the guidance and direction of Jewish religious development throughout the world. After the decline of Babylonian Jewry, the center of Jewish culture shifted in succeeding stages to North Africa, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, the Turkish Empire, and Eastern Europe. The post-Nazi period has witnessed the emergence of two new centers of Jewish learning - Israel and the United States.]

[21 Nissan]

  • Jacob left Laban’s home to return to Eretz Yisrael.
  • Par’o's decree against Jewish male infants was canceled.
  • Jews crossed the Red Sea. Moshe and the people of Israel sang the Shira.

[22 Nissan]

  • Yehoshua began his march around Yericho. The encirclement of Yericho, which led to its destruction within seven days, constituted the first Jewish military action in ancient Eretz Yisrael.

[23 Nissan]

  • A fast-day was observed by the Jewish community of Cologne in commemoration of anti-Jewish violence during the Second Crusade, 1147.
  • Haganah captured the strategic village of Katamon, 1948.

[24 Nissan]

  • The Jews paused at Mara after their crossing of the Red Sea. It was at Mara that the Jews spent their first Shabbat in the desert. [According to the Talmud, Moshe received preliminary instruction in Mara pertaining to a several of religious laws, in anticipation of the giving of the Torah on Mt. Sinai. Jews were enjoined for the first time to observe the seven Noahide laws, to honor their parents, and to rest on the Shabbat. A talmudic passage elsewhere implies that the Shabbat laws dated from their arrival in the "wilderness of Sin" on Iyar 15.

[25 Nissan]

  • The Jews of the Exodus arrived at Elim, where they discovered 12 springs. They remained there for 20 days.

[26 Nissan]

  • The traditional yahrzeit of Joshua.

[27 Nissan]

  • Designated Holocaust Day, in commemoration of the martyred six million Jews and the fighters of the ghettos, by a resolution of the Knesset, 1951.

[28 Nissan]

  • Fall of Jericho.
  • An Arab attack on Petach Tikva was repelled by the Jewish settlers, 1936.

[29 Nissan]

  • 3 Jews killed and many wounded by Arabs in Petach Tikva, 1921. Yahrzeit of Yitzchak Ben Avi, second president of Israel, 1963.

[30 Nissan]

  • Yahrzeit of Rabbi Hayyim Vital, famous kabbalist, 1620.
  • Eight Jews were martyred at Przemysl, Poland, 1659.
  • Yahrzeit of Rabbi Jacob Emden (Ya’vez), scholar and controversial figure, author of Bet Yaakov, a standard prayerbook, 1776. He was the son of Rabbi Zevi Ashkenazi. Their careers and personalities were strikingly similar. Both were renowned scholars. Both were short-tempered and controversial figures. Both waged relentless war against the Shaabbatean heresy. The yahrzeits of both father and son is Rosh Chodesh Iyar.
  • Jewish students were barred from German schools, 1933.