Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, begins at sundown on Friday, September 15, 2023 this year. It ends at sundown on Sunday, September 17, 2023. The name of the holiday in Hebrew literally translates to the "head of the year." Rosh Hashanah is the first of the Jewish High Holidays, followed by Yom Kippur, or the Day of Atonement. Whether you're new to Judaism, celebrating Rosh Hashanah for the first time, or want to wish a colleague, friend, or loved one a happy Jewish New Year, you may be wondering about the best Rosh Hashanah greetings to use.
Is it appropriate to wish someone a Happy Rosh Hashanah?
While Rosh Hashanah is a celebratory holiday, it is also a solemn one. For Jews around the world, it is a time to reflect on the good and the bad of the past year and prepare to improve themselves and their communities in the year to come. That being said, yes — you can wish those observing Rosh Hashanah a happy, good, or sweet new year. Here are a few easy Rosh Hashanah greetings you can say or send in English:
Happy Rosh Hashanah!
Have a sweet new year!
Have a good and sweet new year.
Wishing you a happy and healthy new year.
What is the proper greeting for Rosh Hashanah?
If you're curious about how to greet someone on Rosh Hashanah in Hebrew, there are a few appropriate phrases that are commonly used. The customary Rosh Hashanah greeting is Shanah Tovah in Hebrew, which means "[have a] good year."
You may also hear L'shanah tovah, meaning "for a good year."
Other common Rosh Hashanah greetings
There are a few other iterations, including Shanah tovah umetukah (שנה טובה ומתוקה), which means, "[have a] good and sweet year."
A more formal Rosh Hashanah wish is L'shanah tovah tikatevu v'techatemu, which translates to, "May you be inscribed and sealed for a good year." This is in reference to the Book of Life.
In Yiddish, Rosh Hashanah greetings include a gut yor (אַ גוט יאָר), meaning "a good year" and a gut gebentsht yor (אַ גוט געבענטשט יאָר), meaning "a good blessed year."
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