Daniel 10:2
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2  At that time, I, Daniel, kept three full weeks of mourning.

ba-ya-MEEM ha-HAYM a-NEE da-ni-YAYL ha-YEE-tee mit-a-BAYL sh’-lo-SHAH sha-vu-EEM ya-MEEM

ב  בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם אֲנִי דָנִיֵּאל הָיִיתִי מִתְאַבֵּל שְׁלֹשָׁה שָׁבֻעִים יָמִים׃

 10:2   I, Daniel, kept three full weeks of mourning

Mourning the destruction of the Beit Hamikdash on the ninth of Av

According to Metzudat David, Daniel mourns for three weeks over the cessation of the construction of the Beit Hamikdash during the reign of Cyrus (Ezra 4:24). Similarly, to this day Jews mourn the destruction of Yerushalayim and the Beit Hamikdash for three weeks each year. The mourning period starts with the seventeenth of the month of Tammuz, the day the walls of Yerushalayim were breached by the Romans in 70 CE, and culminates on the ninth of the next month, Av, when both the first and second Temples were set ablaze. Like Daniel, for part of this time Jews do not eat meat or drink wine, remembering the animal offerings and wine libations offered in the Beit Hamikdash that can no longer be brought. Mourning Yerushalayim strengthens the connection between the People of Israel and their holy city. It is said that Napoleon once passed a synagogue on the ninth of Av and inquired why the congregants were crying. When he was told that they were mourning their ancient Temple in Jerusalem, he is said to have responded: “Any people that can mourn an event that occurred thousands of years ago will one day return to their land.”

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Daniel 10:2

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