My Jewish Learning

Minor Fasts Quiz

The four minor fasts on the Jewish calendar commemorate tragedies in Jewish history such as the murder of Gedaliah, the Jewish governor of Judah, and the breach of the walls around Jerusalem in 70 CE. How much do you know about these days?

Question 1. This tractate of the Talmud is devoted to public fast days
 Bava Batra


Question 2. None of the four minor fast days cannot occur
 In January
 On Shabbat
 On a Tuesday
 In the summer
 During a leap year


Question 3. Minor fasts last from...
 Sunset the evening before to the following sunset
 Sunrise to sunset
 From 9 am to 5 pm
 From Shema during Shaharit to Shema during Maariv
 Sunrise to sunrise the next day


Question 4. Which of these events happened, according to the Mishnah, on the 17th of Tammuz?
 An idol was built in the Temple before the Maccabean revolt
 The gates of Jerusalem were breached by the Romas
 Moses smashed the original Ten Commandments
 Cessation of daily sacrifices in the Temple
 All of these


Question 5. What anniversary does the Tenth of Tevet mark?
 The birthday of Nebuchadnezzar, the tyrant who exiled the Jews
 The beginning of the Babylonian siege of Jerusalem
 The day before the first Passover offering
 The day that the walls of Jerusalem were breached


Question 6. Which of the following is a traditional custom associated with minor fast days?
 Giving an additional amount of tzedakah, or charity
 Not performing work
 Staying up all night
 Not wearing leather shoes


Question 7. What did leaders of the Hasidic movement recommend instead of fasting on non-fixed fast days?
 Increasing one's performance of good deeds
 The addition of a fourth Amidah to one's daily prayers
 Preparing and eating a joyous meal
 Studying Torah