30 May to 1 June
Shavuot takes place fifty days after Passover. The days between the two festivals have special significance for Jews, who verbally count the forty-nine days in a practice known as Sefirat HaOmer (Counting of the Omer). Commemorating the revelation of the Torah on Mt. Sinai to the Jewish people, Shavuot is firstly a festival of the giving and the receiving of Torah. However, due to the association of Shavuot with the wheat harvest described in Deuteronomy 16, it is largely celebrated as the Jewish harvest festival. As such, Jews sometimes refer to Shavuot by a number of other names, including ‘The Feast of Weeks’ and ‘The Day of First Fruits’.
Jews observe Shavuot by abstaining from work and by attending special services at a synagogue to give thanks for the Torah and for the ‘first fruits’ of the wheat harvest. In respect of the revelation of the Torah, Jews customarily study Torah all through the night of Shavuot in a practice called Tikkun Leil Shavuot.
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