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Talmud Rosh Hashanah 32a says:

מתני' אין פוחתין מעשרה מלכיות מעשרה זכרונות מעשרה שופרות

My translation:

We do not lessen (saying) 10 verses in each of Malchuyot, Zichront and Shofarot (The middle 3 sections of Musaph Rosh Hashannah).

The Gemarah, there, discusses the breakdown, and it decides a practice to say 3 citations from each of the 3 sections of Tanach, with a concluding citation from the Torah.

Granted, that while it says that we should not do less than 10 verses in total, we cite exactly 10 verses, in both Malchuyot and Zichronot. However, in the Shofarot section, we cite 4 verses from Ketuvim (Writings) with the last one being all of Psalm 150.

Not only does that make that section 11 verses, but it's more than 3 in Ketuvim.

While, it seems that according to the Gemarrah this is fine, why do we make an exception only for Shofarot section, and why are we specifically adding an extra citation just for Ketuvim? Why not make an extra Torah or Nevi'im citation, instead?

  • Do we have any reason to suspect that keeping it to the minimum number has historically ever been preferred or common? – Double AA Sep 17 '15 at 15:29
  • @DoubleAA That's a good query, and, that's a part to research. My question isn't as much as to the specific minimum, as according to the mishna, it seems that we can do more. I'm more curious as to why the extra was placed in Shofarot and why spec. for Ketuvim. As for history, I have to delve into Siddur Rav Amram, one of the oldest sources. I think he has 10. I think that would indicate an old enough history, no? – DanF Sep 17 '15 at 16:18
  • ArtScroll says that Psalm 150 isn't counted; it's just included because it's a source for recited ten verses. – Ypnypn Sep 17 '15 at 20:08
  • @Ypnypn, sounds like an answer. Why not post it as such? – msh210 Sep 17 '15 at 20:35
  • @msh210 Because it doesn't explain why it's not counted. – Ypnypn Sep 17 '15 at 21:43

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