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Wednesday, March 23, 2016

The Whole Magilla

I was watching an episode of "Boardwalk Empire" last night, and someone said that he had gotten "the whole Magilla". My first thought was this:

I made a mental note to look up the origins some day. Well, this morning on Father Z's blog he answered the question for me!

This year our Wednesday of Holy Week, 23 March, coincides with the beginning of the Jewish holiday Purim, which celebrates how God, through Esther and her adoptive father Mordechai, saved the lives of the Jewish people from the hateful Hamman and the King during the Persian captivity.
One of the customs of Purim is to read or sing the whole scroll of the Book of Esther, which is called “the whole megillah (megillat – scroll)”.  There are several “megillah books”, but Esther is probably the most associated with the word.   During the singing of the whole megillah, when the name of the evil Hamman is pronounced, the people often shout and make noise with noisemakers to blot out his name, a kind of damnatio memoriae.