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    Adventures of the etrog – Sukkot

    * One of the Four Species used on Sukkot is the etrog. It is the odd man out, the only plant which is not bound together with the others.

    * The etrog is called in the Torah “the fruit of a goodly (beautiful) tree” (Lev. 23:40). Each of the four plants symbolises a part of the human body. The etrog is the heart, which makes the body function. It also represents the Jewish people, a small separate group who exemplify ethics. The four plants symbolise four Biblical figures: the etrog is Abraham.

    * The name etrog is from a Persian root tarag and the original name might be torange. The etrog was known for its aroma and medicinal properties.

    * In size the etrog must not be smaller than an egg, even though today’s eggs are regarded as smaller than those of talmudic times.

    * Etrogim used to be rare and expensive. The question arose, “If one has to choose between visiting a town that has a sukkah and one that has an etrog, which should be chosen?” The answer is, “The one with the etrog!”

    * Can one use an etrog owned by the synagogue? The members of the shule are partners who jointly own the appurtenances of the synagogue.

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