My Jewish Learning

Magic & the Supernatural Quiz

Judaism has many folk customs with magical undertones. But these are not without controversy. How well do you know Jewish magic, and the debates around it?

Question 1. True or false: In the Torah, God curses people.


Question 2. Which of the following Jewish ritual objects did Christians (mistakenly) believe Jews used human blood to create?
 The etrog, at Sukkot
 The matzah, at Passover
 The bitter herb, at Passover
 The menorah, at Hanukkah
 The Torah


Question 3. Who is the author of the play The Dybbuk?
 Grace Aguilar
 S. Ansky
 Sholem Aleichem
 Sholem Asch


Question 4. True or false: Among the Dead Sea Scrolls, there exists a fragmentary text that is a collection of protective formulae for fending off demonic attack.


Question 5. Which biblical character is said to be a witch?
 King Manasseh
 Queen Esther
 Queen Jezebel


Question 6. Which of these is NOT a reason that a talmudic sage was granted special powers?
 He was the first person in synagogue every morning of his life
 He never walked four cubits without speaking words of Torah
 He never drank any liquid except water
 He never laid out a bed and slept for a regular period of time
 He never called anybody by a nickname


Question 7. Which of the following supernatural practices is forbidden in the Bible?
 Hepatoscopy (reading animal entrails)
 Belomancy (casting or shooting arrows as lots)
 All of these
 None of these