In Those Days, At This Time

Eliezer Segal's approach to Jewish history and tradition is light-hearted and humorous. In Those Days, At This Time is a collection of entertaining short essays that explores the intricate framework of sacred days and times that make up the Jewish festival calendar. Each piece is devoted to an occasion in the cycle of sacred seasons. With such intriguing titles as "Getting a Handel on Hanukkah" and "The Eggs and the Exodus," these essays bring a touch of whimsy to a complex and deep-rooted religious tradition. Segal investigates the ways festival observances have been shaped over the generations, looking at different interpretations of their rituals, their symbolism, and their adaptation to changing historical circumstances.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents
Cover 1
Title Page 4
Bibliographic Information 5
Contents 6
Introduction 10
The Sabbath 18
You Have Mail!* 20
Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur 24
Dancing with the Demons* 26
Roman Holiday* 32
Where to Draw the Line* 38
Vanity, Emptiness and the Throne of Glory* 46
Sins in the Balance* 52
Atoning for Esau* 58
Sukkot and Simhat Torah 66
Prince of Rain* 68
Come Gather ’Round, People* 74
The Mysterious Origins of Simhat Torah* 80
Hanukkah 86
Getting a Handel on 88
Burning Issue* 92
The Wicked Hasmonean Priest* 96
A Megillah for Hanukkah* 102
Assideans for Everyone* 108
The Fifteenth of Shevat 114
Apples and Apocalypse* 116
It Grows on Trees* 122
Renewable Resource* 126
Purim 130
Passing through Shushan* 132
Troubles at Court* 138
The Purim-Shpiel and the Passion Play* 144
The Wise King Ahasuerus* 150
Esther and the Essenes* 156
Remembering Harbona – for Good or for Bad?* 164
Passover 170
Back to Egypt* 172
‘In Every Generation …’: The Strange Omission in Rabbi Kalischer’s Haggadah* 178
The Eggs and the Exodus* 184
Dressing for Success* 192
Hillel’s Perplexing Passover Predicament* 198
Old King, New King* 204
Drip before You Sip* 210
Those Magnificent Men and Their Matzah Machines* 216
Freshly Baked: A Matzah Mystery* 222
The ‘Omer Season 230
Counting the Days* 232
Notes from the Underground* 238
Just a Little Bit Off the Top, Please* 244
The Case of the Missing ‘Omer* 250
Israeli Independence Day 254
Gathering the Dispersed of Israel* 256
That Old Blue Box* 260
Shavu’ot 266
Honey from the Tablets* 268
Crowning Achievement* 274
When Mount Sinai Was Lifted Up* 284
Renewing the Covenant at Qumran* 292
Glossary 298
Index 330
Back Cover 346