In some shuls that I have attended, they end the Cohen aliyah of Shabbat parshat Devarim one pasuk before the one where "Sheni" is marked (i.e. - they end it before pasuk 11 instead of 12).

I'm not sure what the reason for doing this is. I heard from someone that it's a "bad omen" to begin the aliyah with the word "Eicha" (at the start of pasuk 13) close to Tish'a B'Av.

I don't know if that reason is the real reason. It sounds a bit strange. The whole week we know we are within the 9 Days and we are aware of what 9 Av is about, and this is what we're concerned about so much to end an aliyah early?

Where did this minhag originate?

  • 1
    Sheni is marked just before 11 in my Chumash
    – Double AA
    Jul 31, 2014 at 19:39
  • I don't know the origin, but I can confirm that it's a "real" minhag, in that I just read about it in this week's OU Israel Torah Tidbits (page 7). Jul 31, 2014 at 20:07
  • @DoubleAA - Interesting. Which Chumash do you have?
    – DanF
    Jul 31, 2014 at 20:14
  • I have seen\ a tikkun that marks it twice.
    – Yitzchak
    Jul 31, 2014 at 21:07
  • Chumash Torat Chayim marked it in the same place as @DoubleAA's.
    – Scimonster
    Aug 12, 2016 at 12:40

1 Answer 1


The source for those who begin one verse earlier is the Eishel Abraham of Butatach (Siman 138) who explains that this is because the custom is to chant the verse "Eicha Esa Levadi" in the same tune as Megillas Eicha and it is therefore considered a "tochecha" (reproach) and we do not begin an Aliyah negatively. See also the Likutey Maharich (3:52:1) who writes that this custom applies even for those who read the verse in the regular tune.

  • Thanks. These are unusual sources. I never heard of either one of these. Can you link any of them?
    – DanF
    Aug 1, 2014 at 12:36

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