- The celebration of birthdays is unknown in traditional Jewish ritual. A comparatively late exception, however, is the bar mitzvah and the bat mitzvah. The only reference to a birthday in the Bible is that celebrated by Pharaoh (Gen. 40:20). In Reform and Conservative synagogues, special prayers of thanksgiving are recited on the occasion of significant birthdays (e.g., 50th, 70th, 80th, etc.) and at silver and golden wedding anniversaries. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: Rabbi's Manual (1928–19622), 45–49, CCAR (Reform); J. Harlow (ed.), Likkutei Tefillah, A Rabbi's Manual (1965), Conservative, 51–55.
Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.
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