Questions about the various prayer books used by Jews, and the prayers contained therein.

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6
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1answer
664 views

How did the Ten Martyrs actually die?

On Yom Kippur and Tisha B'av we read about the Ten Martyrs who were gathered and killed by Emperor Hadrian to atone for the Sale of Yosef HaTzadik. In addition to the idea that the Ten Martyrs didn't ...
10
votes
4answers
207 views

How do we know what the Chazzan should say aloud?

In many siddurim, the text indicates a position, toward the end of each normal paragraph of prayer, where the Chazzan is supposed to start reading aloud, so that everyone knows when it's time to go on ...
11
votes
1answer
182 views

Is there a Beta Israel Siddur?

Ashkenazi siddurs are different from Sephardic siddurs, do Beta Israel Siddurs even exist?
11
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7answers
403 views

Which parts of the prayer service must be said clearly out loud?

I've heard a few different opinions on this. During longer prayer services, such as Shacharit on Shabbat, at least in Nusach Sefard, Pesukei D'Zimrah is quite long and there is a tendency for the ...
6
votes
2answers
252 views

Siddur & chumash — which gets stacked on top?

I've seen this one asked over and over again, and always heard different things. Do you stack a chumash on top of a siddur, or the other way around?
5
votes
0answers
62 views

Siddur for Skolyer Chasidim

Is there a specific siddur for the minhag of the Skolyer Chasidim (Chasidim of Ukrainian town of Skole)?
4
votes
1answer
266 views

Which Raban Shimon ben Gamliel was it who was martyred?

The Ten Martyrs liturgy describes Rabbi Yishmael the High Priest and Raban [=nasi or "chief rabbi"] Shimon ben Gamliel as killed by the Romans at the same time. Rabbi Yishmael served as cohen gadol ...
0
votes
1answer
104 views

Why do we not use the original language of בִּרְכַּת הַמִּינִים?

The language we currently use in the amidah for בִּרְכַּת הַמִּינִים is different from that found in the earliest siddurim. The gemarah (Berachot 40b) teaches us that "If one alters the formula laid ...
9
votes
1answer
568 views

Why so many vocalized shvas in Siddur Tehillat Hashem?

I prayed using a Siddur Tehillat Hashem the other day, and I noticed that many more shvas were marked with an asterisk above, indicating that they should be vocalized, than I'd expect. In particular, ...
8
votes
1answer
174 views

Division of Mishnayos in Pirkei Avos / Meseches Avos

In the Siddur, Pirkei Avos has a different division (in each Perek the amount of Mishnayos) than in the Mishnayos Avos. Who determined the division of the Mishnayos in the Siddur?
3
votes
1answer
86 views

Why skip Yikum Purkan and Mi Sheberach on a weekday Yom Tov?

This is a question specific to Ashkenazim (Nusach Ashkenaz, Nusach Ari, and Nusach Sefard). On Shabbat, after the Torah Reading and before Mussaf, 3 prayers, (2 Yikkum Purkans and a Mi Sheberach) are ...
12
votes
2answers
542 views

Nun in Ashrei- Psalm 145

The prayer Ashrei, which we recite three times a day, is an acrostic consisting of all the letters of the Hebrew alphabet except for nun (נ). Why is the nun omitted?
10
votes
5answers
280 views

Why are there colored splotches on the pages on many Jewish texts?

On many editions of the Chumash, Talmud, and even many more-modern books, you look at the side of the book (opposite the spine) and there are random colored splotches printed on the pages. (For ...
6
votes
0answers
81 views

“Nahhat Ruahh l'Yotzro” source

At the end of מוסף לשבת in דרכי אבות השלם (p. 375), a quotation is written in the name of רבי יהודה: אמר רבי יהודה: אשרי מי שעמלו בתורה ועושה נחת רוח ליוצרו Can anyone help me find the exact ...
6
votes
2answers
137 views

Why switch the reference from “גוי” to “עם” in Tachanun?

Why does the prayer "Shomer Yisra'el" in Tachanun say in two of the verses the word גוי in the first and last phrase, but עם in the middle phrase? שומר גוי אחד שמור שארית עם אחד ואל יאבד גוי אחד ...
6
votes
1answer
136 views

“Hayom yom X b'shabas” or “bashabas”?

A sidur I used this morning had the introductory line of the shir shel yom as "hayom yom sheni b'shabas". When I checked the two sidurim I trust the most for excatitude in these matters, one had ...
5
votes
3answers
101 views

Six fast days? What's the sixth?

On Mekor Judaica's website, I see a Sephardic siddur for sale, for the שש תעניות, the six fast days. I was only aware of 5 fast days: Ta'anit Esther Tzom Gedaliah 10th of Tevet 17th of Tammuz Tisha ...
5
votes
1answer
96 views

If the “ten martyrs” didn't happen together, did the punishment-for-Joseph story happen? When?

It's commonly believed that the "ten martyrs" didn't all live in the same time period, and the description of them as a group is conceptual, not historical. Now the story opens with a Roman ruler ...
4
votes
1answer
217 views

Does anyone pray according to Rambam's Seder Tefila?

I wonder if among the new wave of Talmidei haRambam, there might be anyone using a siddur that uses Rambam's language of prayer exclusively, as recorded in the Mishneh Torah (here).
4
votes
1answer
176 views

Aleinu L'Shabeach - Nusach HaTefila

The words "Sheheim Mishtachavim Li-Hevel Voryk Umispallelim El Eil Lo-Yoshiya" - Was this originally part of Aleinu and then removed, or was it added later to Aleinu? Why was this done?
3
votes
1answer
230 views

Who wrote the 1950s-era super-patriotic Prayer for the United States of America?

In the "Tikun Meir" siddur from about 50 years ago, there's a very unique prayer for the United States of America. Something to the effect of: Humble were its beginnings, but by Your kindness, ...
2
votes
0answers
33 views

Meditation before Mitzvah activities

Who invented the meditation that is often printed before such things as counting the 'Omer, inviting the Ushpizin, and other Mitzvoth or Mitzvah-related activities, and what is the basis for it?
2
votes
4answers
443 views

Differences between siddurim of the same nusach

In nusach Sefard siddurim, there are pronounced differences between nearly every one, each reflecting the particular view of its author as to how to properly reconcile the Arizal with nusach Ashkenaz. ...
2
votes
1answer
147 views

What's the best rewording of “midas harachamim aleinu hisgalgli” for those uncomfortable with it?

In the Selichot (fifth day of Aseret Yimei Teshuvah, HaPizmon shel Yud Gimel Middot HaRahamim) and in Ne'ila of Yom Kippur, there's the stanza that reads: The concern is the few middle lines: ...
2
votes
2answers
220 views

Variant vowelizations in Selichot

The repeated paragraph in Selichot that introduces the Thirteen Attributes includes the phrase "increasingly grants pardon to careless sinners and foregiveness to willful ones" (Artscroll Siddur ...
1
vote
1answer
62 views

Which part of שחרית would you identify as “prayer”?

What part of שחרית would you identify as "prayer"?