Purim is a Jewish holiday commemorating the saving of the Jewish people from Haman by Mordechi and Queen Esther, as recorded in the Biblical Book of Esther. This was because Mordecai refused to bow down to Haman, with Haman vowing to destroy all the Jewish people in Persia. Upon finding out about the plan, Mordecai told Queen Esther, who would distribute arms to the Jews of Susa and other Persian cities and defeat Haman’s forces in a series of clashes.
This year, Purim falls on Saturday 11th March 2017 and ends on Sunday 12th March 2017. Purim usually involves the following:
– Exchanging gifts and food
– Donating to charity
– Eating a celebratory meal
– A public recitation of the Scroll of Esther
– Adding recitations to the daily prayers, as well as grace after the meal
– The drinking of wine!
Though there is no reference to dressing up in costume on Purim in the Scroll of Esther, The Talmud or any other holy book. However, there is still a great tradition to dressing up on Purim. The reasons why Jewish people dress up include:
– Miracles occurring within otherwise normal, natural, everyday events
– The masking of intentions – Jewish people often had to claim they were serving other gods whilst they lived in Persia
– To reduce the embarrassment of the poor
– To commemorate the dressing up of Mordechi in King Ahasuerus’s garments in the Story of Purim
So, as you can see, there are already some ideas of what to wear this Purim. Common dressing up themes and ideas on Purim include …
As the dressing up is symbolic, there is no real need to be historically accurate on Purim. This means prince, princess, king and queen costumes from pretty much any era. This means frilly gowns, tiaras, sceptres, crowns, Egyptian/Greek/Roman robes and perhaps even a sword. (You’ve just been fighting off Haman’s forces, after all!)
We here at Escapade have all sorts of Rabbi costumes and accessories, including beards, wigs, hats and jackets. They are available in both adult and children’s sizes, too, as well as being a great Purim costume at an affordable price. We highly recommend this costume if you don’t want to fuss around too much or spend lots of money!
There is a rich relationship between comedy and the Jewish people, especially in the United States. Woody Allen, Jack Benny, Lenny Bruce, Groucho Marx, Gene Wilder … The list goes on-and-on-and-on. Clown costumes are another great value choice, and they capture the idea of “covering up and looking unusual” very well. So well, in fact, that many find clown costumes that little bit frightening!
We mentioned comedians above, so we thought to mention one of the best: Mel Brooks. The film we’re referencing? Why, Blazing Saddles, of course! The greatest Western parody of all time!
Venetian masks are popular at Purim, not only because they capture the metaphor of “hiding” very well, but because they’re also a simple way of getting into the spirit without having to go too overboard. Venetian masks are also adaptable for a great number of situations on top of being good value for money, meaning they can be used over-and-over again.
Quite simply because there’s a feast and lots of food being eaten!
We hope we’ve helped take some of the stress out of deciding on a costume for Purim. Buy yours or your childrens’ today and have more time to enjoy yourself!