Melachot
When we use the word ‘work’ we think of physical labour or employment. However, this is not what Jews mean by forbidden ‘work’ on Shabbat. Melachot (singular Melachah) are any actions which can be seen as creative.

Just as God ceased his creative work on the seventh day, so Jews too rest from any action which is creative on Shabbat.

There are 39 categories of Melachot which are forbidden on Shabbat:

     

© Mr.B at Woodford County High School
The 39 Melachot
  1. Sowing
  2. Plowing
  3. Reaping
  4. Binding sheaves
  5. Threshing
  6. Winnowing
  7. Selecting
  8. Grinding
  9. Sifting
  10. Kneading
  11. Baking
  12. Shearing wool
  13. Washing wool
  14. Beating wool
  15. Dyeing wool
  16. Spinning
  17. Weaving
  18. Making two loops
  19. Weaving two threads
  20. Separating two threads
  21. Tying
  22. Untying

 

  1. Sewing two stitches
  2. Tearing
  3. Trapping
  4. Slaughtering
  5. Flaying
  6. Salting meat
  7. Curing hide
  8. Scraping hide
  9. Cutting hide up
  10. Writing two letters
  11. Erasing two letters
  12. Building
  13. Tearing a building down
  14. Extinguishing a fire
  15. Kindling a fire
  16. Hitting with a hammer
  17. Taking an object from the private domain to the public, or transporting an object in the public domain.