Bar Mitzvah

Deutsch: Gemälde (Öl auf Leinwand) von Oscar R...
Paintings (oil on canvas) of a bar mitzvah in a synagogue by Oscar Rex (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Bar Mitzvah [Hebrew “son of the law”] is a Jewish rite of passage where a young male aged 13 or young female aged 12 comes of age and officially accepts full religious responsibilities. The term also refers to the person for whom the ceremony is observed. Strictly speaking, the Bar Mitzvah is for boys and the Bat Mitzvah is for girls. But often the term Bar Mitzvah is used for both genders.

The modern form of the Bar Mitzvah is not described in the Jewish Bible. But the books of Exodus and Numbers do mention the importance of attaining the age of majority, which back then was recognized as age 20. It’s not until the Talmud that we find the term “Bar Mitzvah.”

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