Miriam's Goblet

In a new tradition, many Jews are adding a cup of water in memory of Miriam next to Elijah's cup of wine.

Reprinted with permission from Lilith magazine.

In recent years, we have begun placing two ceremonial goblets on our seder tables: the traditional one, filled with wine, for Elijah the prophet, and a second one, filled with wine, for Miriam the Prophetess. (She is called a "prophetess" in Exodus 15:20.)

Passover on Beliefnet
  • A comparison of theme Haggadahs.
  • Johanna Skilling on her interfaith seder.
  • Arthur Hertzberg on the lessons of his parents' seder.
  • Teaching Tales: Elijah's Favorite Seder

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    PLUS: Find more features, music, and the interactive seder plate in Beliefnet's Passover section.

  • Miriam is a central figure in the Passover drama. She stands guard loyally when her baby brother Moses is set afloat on the Nile, and she arranges for a wet nurse--Moses' own mother--who gets paid by Pharaoh's daughter for caretaking and living with her own child.

    Miriam leads the Hebrew people in singing and dancing--the most natural expression of religious joy--after they cross the Red Sea. And she dies by the kiss of God; the Angel of Death, we are told, has no power over her.

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