In Havdalah, I noticed a virtually universal custom: when the one who is saying Havdalah reaches the Passuk of Layehudim Haytah Orah (ליהודים היתה אורה ושמחה...), those who are being Yotzei Havdalah say the passuk aloud.

(One variation of this custom seems to have those around say it while the "Chazzan" is quite, and then the Chazzan repeats it. The other seems to be the Chazzan saying it together with those around)

Either way, what is the source of the custom? Why is this Passuk said aloud?

  • 2
    Why is the passuk said at all? I still haven't received an answer to my question of why we say all this stuff before havdala to begin with.
    – jake
    Dec 8, 2011 at 5:03
  • @jake There is at least one answer there. judaism.stackexchange.com/a/11642/5
    – Seth J
    Dec 8, 2011 at 19:14
  • @SethJ, Indeed, there is an answer posted; it just doesn't answer the question.
    – jake
    Dec 8, 2011 at 19:17
  • 1
    "See the Rema on Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim 296:1, which brings 3 (or maybe 4) of the verses (but in a different order), and says it is for a "Siman Tov", a good sign. See Dayan Raskin's Siddur (footnote 8) where he discusses the various sources for the different verses we say before the blessings." -- Looks like a quality answer to me.
    – Seth J
    Dec 8, 2011 at 19:42
  • @yydl, I think the phenomenon is limited to Ashkenazi practice, though I could be wrong. Also, is it universal in all (Ashkenazi) communities - Yeshivish, Chasidish, M.O., etc.?
    – Seth J
    Dec 8, 2011 at 19:48

2 Answers 2


This passuk is said outloud, because you say it outloud during the Megilah reading.


According to R. Shmuel Pinchas Gelbard, some also have the custom and saying "Cain Tihyeh Lanu", "yes we have" after this line as a prayer to have more light in the upcoming week, good times and good news.

  • 4
    As always, a source for your answer would up its value.
    – msh210
    Dec 8, 2011 at 15:20
  • What source are you looking for, that we say it out loud during megilah reading?
    – avi
    Dec 9, 2011 at 10:43
  • No, that that's the reason we say it aloud during havdala. (Which source will also be a source for the fact that we say it aloud during m'gila reading.)
    – msh210
    Dec 9, 2011 at 15:15
  • The nature of my answer is that there is no source for doing it, we just do it because we do it elsewhere.
    – avi
    Dec 12, 2011 at 12:50

The only source that I could find is Likutei Maharich volume2 - page 82 where he mentions that our Minhag is that all those who hear Havdalla say Layehudim out loud. He does not give a reason for this Minhag.

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