Literally "Germany". Questions about the Jews of all the area that was once medieval Germany, more generally of all Catholic and Protestant (and some Eastern Orthodox) lands, and their laws and customs.

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7
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1answer
110 views

Sefer Torah enclosures

The Torah scrolls of Ashkenazim have a very different look than those of Sepharadim. Ashkenazim just roll the parchment onto two poles, and read it in a horizontal position; the Sepharadim install the ...
9
votes
3answers
873 views

When and why did the black velvet yarmulke become the standard for some communities?

Ashkenazi yarmulkes from around 200 years ago closely resemble the Yerushalmi style - white knitted with a tassel on top. Today, the vast majority of Chasidim and Yeshivish Jews seem to wear black ...
5
votes
1answer
81 views

Zmirot vs Pizmoniim

How is it that Ashkenaz and Sfardiim have different names for the same exact thing. Do both Zmira and Pizmon mean the same thing? What are the origination of people calling them either one? I know ...
3
votes
3answers
133 views

Yotz'ros — but no ahavos

Why are there yom tov additions to the first b'racha before sh'mone esre in the morning and to the third, but never to the second? (In maariv, by contrast, every birchas k'rias sh'ma has yom tov ...
4
votes
1answer
76 views

Why do the Ashkenazim say Selichos for a minimum of 4 days before Rosh HaShana?

The Ashkenazim start saying Selichos a minimum of 4 days before Rosh HaShana? What is the reason of a minimum of 4 days?
5
votes
4answers
206 views

What are Brochos differences of Sefardim and Ashkenazim?

For example, according to sefardim the bracha on matzo is mezonos (during the year), while it's hamotzi for Ashkenazim. What are other differences between Ashkenazim and Sefardim with regards to ...
5
votes
1answer
127 views

Why is Boruch Hashem Leolam not said in Israel?

Outside of Israel we say ...ברוך ד' לעולם after השכיבנו by Maariv. Why is this part of tefilah not said in Israel (or: why is this said outside Israel)?
8
votes
3answers
305 views

Why the split between Sefardim and Ashkenzim?

Why is there a much bigger split between Sefardim and Ashkenzim and not, say, between Sefardim and people who lived in Bavel? The distance between Spain, and say, Israel should have been big enough to ...
6
votes
2answers
427 views

Why do the laws of kitniyot still apply today to Ashkenazi Jews on Passover?

How did the tradition start? Why is it still around today? What is the basis for this Halacha (הלכה)?
10
votes
2answers
204 views

Did the Rosh (Rabbeinu Asher) describe the culture clash moving from medieval Germany to Spain?

Rabbi Asher (the "Rosh") moved from medieval Germany to Spain. I know he describes some different halachic practices that were done in Spain (e.g. linen tzitzis); but does he describe the difference ...
7
votes
1answer
192 views

wording of the invitation to birkas hamazon

I know some Ashk'nazim say rabosay n'varech, some rabosay mir velen bentschen, and some hertzi rabosay mir velen bentschen. (Any other forms?) Is there any particular reason given for one or another?
3
votes
1answer
105 views

women's saying a b'racha on s'firas haomer

Mishna B'rura 489:3 says women do not say a b'racha on s'firas haomer; Aruch Hashulchan 489:4 says they do. What is the practice of various Ashk'nazi communities (for example, chassidic (various ...
4
votes
1answer
623 views

What's the earliest source/discussion on green beans being “kitniyot” (prohibited legumes) on Passover?

My understanding is that most Ashkenazic communities today don't eat green beans on Passover, treating them as kitniyot (a bunch of legumes for which the custom arose to avoid on Passover). What's the ...
6
votes
4answers
155 views

Parshas Zachor Sfardi versus Ashkenazi

Can a Sefardi be Yotzeh Zachor with an Ashkenazi Laining and vice Versa?
5
votes
1answer
583 views

Yerushalmi Versus Bavli

What are the differences between the two Talmuds? or are there differences? Why did the two Talmuds develop separately or did they? Why do we Poskin like the Bavli or do we? Is it true that the ...
4
votes
3answers
543 views

Is there anywhere that you can buy Kosher non Glatt meat?

When you go shopping, it seems that they only offer Glatt Kosher. I would imagine non Glatt would be cheaper. Is there anywhere that someone who is not Makpid (It is an American post world war ...
7
votes
2answers
292 views

Talis over head

Why is it that most Ashkenazim that are not married do not put the Talis over their head?
3
votes
1answer
105 views

Selichos start: Ashkinazim vs. Sefardim

Why do Sefardim start saying Sleichos earlier than Ashkinazim?
7
votes
2answers
196 views

The Split Between Sefardim and Ashkenazim

How did this split happen historically and halachically before Shulchan Aruch, and why is not like having two Torahs? Where is the source for the split?
3
votes
3answers
270 views

Kitnios on Pesach

Why and when did the minhag start that allows Sephardim to eat Kitnios (Legumes)but not Ashkenazim?
13
votes
4answers
536 views

What's a good technique for a not-so-strong person to do [Ashkenazi] Hagbaha?

I've seen many people shy away when asked to do Hagbaha (‏הגבהה‏), thinking themselves too weak. I know for a fact that it doesn't take that much strength to do it correctly, so I'd love to ...