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.

A significant group of differences, for example, are variances in text reflected in most of the brochos of the Shemoneh Esreh. Even the Artscroll Sefard siddur accommodates many of these differences.

Similarly, some Sefard siddurim have radically different forms of tachanun - some match Ashkenaz almost exactly while others are entirely according to the Arizal.

Are there similar differences between different siddurim in other nusachos, or are all Ashkenaz siddurim essentially the same, all Mizrachi siddurim essentially the same, and so on?

  • 2
    Any specific examples with which you're concerned?
    – minhag
    Commented May 17, 2012 at 2:39
  • @minhag I don't know that I could give specific examples about which I'm wondering but I could include in the question some specific examples in Sefard with which I am familiar.
    – yoel
    Commented May 17, 2012 at 6:14
  • The parenthesis in Artscrolls siddur are taken from different siddurim. They contradict each other since Group A says to add parenthisis here and Group B says here but not where group A adds. You end up saying a lot of extra that doesnt really seem to have a point. The best find a group and use their siddur.
    – user1292
    Commented May 18, 2012 at 17:10
  • @mochinrechavim I use the Berditchever siddur - my question is more one of curiosity, as I find the variations in nusachos fascinating.
    – yoel
    Commented May 18, 2012 at 22:23
  • @yoel I think there is a haskama in that siddur from either the Divrei Yoel or the Yismach Moshe.
    – user1292
    Commented May 18, 2012 at 23:17

4 Answers 4


Sephardi siddurim vary somewhat based upon the traditions they follow. For example, De Sola Pool's siddur is used in Spanish-Portuguese synagogues, while Moroccans while often use Siddur Darkei Avot. Some obvious variants include the texts of Havdalah. You can read more about these (and other) variants relevant section of Keter Shem Tob by Shem Tov Gaguine.

Of course, Nusach Ashkenaz also differ somewhat but these tend to be more on political/modernity concerns. Artscroll publishes two editions, one of which is the RCA version including prayers for the State of Israel. The newest Koren Sacks siddur includes even more services based off of custom in Israel.

Really, this strikes me somewhat as a question as to what level of community you wish to cite a particular minhag of tefillah (e.g., there are even variants within Spanish-Portuguese minhagim in synagogues using the same siddur [again De Sola Pool's] between England and the US)

  • +1. Re "De Sola Pool's siddur", is that the Rabbinical Council of America sidur, or did he edit another besides?
    – msh210
    Commented May 17, 2012 at 3:31
  • De Sola Pool published two siddurim. The one to which I refer is specifically used "according to the rites of the Spanish-Portuguese." It was originally published in 1947, and there have been multiple republications since. I'm not sure of the dates for the other siddur.
    – minhag
    Commented May 17, 2012 at 3:33

If you look at particular phrases (such as in the section between borchu and shma), and compare the vowels and punctuation, you will find differences in a variety of Ashkenazic siddurim. These differences (such as "b'safah vrurah uvin'imah, kedusha kulam k'echad onim" vs. "b'safah vrurah, uvin'ima kedosha, kulam k'echad onim") reflect slightly different meanings, while decisions like whether or not to include "elokeinu, v'elokei avoteinu" on shabbat-yom tov reflect the positions of the editors/halachic authorities, and the variants in the "vlamalshinim" bracha reflect different textual traditions.

  • This reminds me of even the opinions stated by the Rav published in at least the OU's Soloveitchiz Kaiser edition Machzorim that state various small variants (e.g., saying only "Hashem sfotai tiftach" before Musaf/Minha; variant pronunciations of יתגדל ויתקדש). Clearly, even mainstream Centrist YU Orthodoxy of the last generation had various differences in tefilah.
    – minhag
    Commented May 18, 2012 at 4:50

On the topic of nusach sefard which is essential a blend of Sephardic Kabbalah into the Ashkenaz Siddur. The Alter Rebbe takes into account many different siddurim from Rishionim, Achronim, and different Nusach AriZal siddurim, and tries to create something that keeps as close the rishonim as possible while introducing certain kabbalistic ideas of the Arizal. The A.R. does not bring in kavanaos like Sephardic Siddurim ie: Kavana Shem HaVayeh Adon HaKol, Haya Hayu Hoveh etc. This gives the most seasoned Kabbalist down to the simplest Jew the ability to use a siddur that follows the Arizal's opinion. Then you have the A.R.'s Siddur Im'Dach (Siddur with Chassidus) that will have a 5 page mammar between Shema Yisroel and Baruch Shem (This siddur isnt meant to daven from).


Have a look at the website


for the history of the siddur.


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