Category Archives: Aviv

Mourners of Zion and Residents of Gaza

The gift that keeps on giving.

The gift that keeps on giving.

Israel’s recent (and maybe ongoing?) war with Hamas prompted me to look into whether there was ever a Karaite Jewish presence in what is now referred to as the Gaza Strip. As far as I know, no Karaites lived in the Strip in 2005 when then Prime Minister of Israel Ariel Sharon evicted the Jewish residents there.

But I was surprised to learn that Gaza (the city, not the strip) featured in several aspects of medieval Jewish life.

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under Aviv, Mourners of Zion, Salmon ben Yeruham

KJA Releases Next Section of Mikdash Me’at

Leave a Comment

Filed under Aviv, Elijah Baschyatchi, New Moon

Will the Calendar Kill the Karaites (Again)?

Ankori's Magnum Opus is a Must Read

Ankori’s Magnum Opus is a Must Read

Several weeks ago, I was out to dinner with a friend and we were discussing the state of the Karaite movement. “I think if we look at the history of the movement from the outside, the calendar issue is really what hurt Karaites,” my friend posited.

Because the historical Karaite calendar was based on empirical observations of the new moon and the ripeness of the barley, devout Karaites (especially those in the Diaspora) often disagreed as to when the true biblical holidays should be celebrated.

The Rabbanites historically mocked Karaites about this disunity. (Perhaps rightly.)

Continue reading


Filed under Aviv, Books, Daniel al-Kumisi, Holidays, Karaite Rabbanite Relations, New Moon

Shana Tovah: And a (Completely Made-Up) Karaite Tradition

Could One of These be A Blue Thread's Official New Year Brew?Source: *

Could One of These be A Blue Thread’s Official New Year Brew?
Source: *

L’Shanah Tovah, everyone.

As noted in our last few posts, the Jewish New Year begins with the first new moon after the barley in the Land of Israel reaches the stage of development known as Aviv.

Over the past days, several individuals have confirmed that the barley is Aviv, and we have received numerous reports that new moon was sighted in Israel on March 13, 2013. So. . . yeah; Happy New Year.

It occurs to me that we need a fun New Year’s tradition – something similar to the Rabbanite use of “apples and honey” for their Rosh Hashanah. So here is my best shot.

Continue reading


Filed under Aviv, Calendar, Passover

Aviv it or Not! (Part Two)

The last K.J.A. Bulletin? This April 2007 issue ran a story on the Aviv.

The last K.J.A. Bulletin?
This April 2007 issue ran a story on the Aviv.

As I mentioned on my Facebook profile, I was pleasantly surprised by how many people actually visited A Blue Thread to learn about the Aviv and its relation to the Jewish years.

Today, with permission from the Karaite Jews of America, I am posting images of a story that ran in the April 2007 issue of the K.J.A. Bulletin. The story is about the 2006 Aviv search.

If I recall correctly, this was the last K.J.A. Bulletin that was published. As an aside, some of my most vivid childhood memories are of watching my father stapling, folding and mailing the K.J.A Bulletins from our dining room in the 1980s.

I know that the internet has made most small-time publications difficult to justify, but one of my professed goals is to see a widely accepted Karaite print publication. A man can dream, can’t he?
Continue reading


Filed under Aviv, K.J.A. Bulletin, Karaite Jewish University, Karaite Jews of America

Aviv It or Not! (Part One)

This barley is mostly at the stage of Aviv;some of the barley is fully ripe.

This barley (from a previous year’s search) is mostly at the stage of Aviv; some of the barley is fully ripe.

Last week, I mentioned that some Karaites (and other Torah observant individuals) might be celebrating Passover a month after most Jews.

If you’re not familiar with this issue, I admit it can be confusing. So before you go all “Whatcha talkin’ ’bout Willis?” on me; let’s see if I can clear it up – at least a little.

Continue reading


Filed under Aviv, Calendar