As a lad attending a shul in Washington Heights, NY, I noticed that the rav blew 10 blasts from the shofar after each hakafah on Hoshanna Rabba. Our shul davened Nusach Ashkenaz.

Since then, I have been to dozens of other shuls on Hoshanna Rabba, both Nusach Ashkenaz and Sfard. No other shul performed this minhag, so I sense that this may not be too common.

I am curious what the source and / or reason for this minhag is, and if there are any demographics on this. (Which group of people are likely to follow this minhag?)

  • Was this K'hal Adas Yeshurun? Jan 2 '17 at 10:54

Luach Dvar B'Itoh

According to the Luach Dvar B'Itoh it's a Chassidish Minhag to blow after each round of the 7 Hakafot on Hoshana Rabba.

His sources it from the Shloh HaKadosh, and other sources that I can't decipher unambiguously, if at all.

מנ' ק"ק חס' לתקוע תשר"ת (ולמ"צ: תשר"ת תש"ת תר"ת. מ 365 ) בין "הושענא" ל"הושענא" (ומקורו בסדה"י ובשלה"ק. שו"ת עטי"ש בסוף אמ"נ מועדים, ב)‏

His source is מ 365 which is: הרב שלום שטמר, עורך "צאנז" הי"ו (נתניה)‏ (as per page 1475) - the editor of the Tzanzer weekly.


It's possibly a reminder of the Shofar blowing that took place in the Bet haMikdash when they brought in the new Aravot daily and placed them around the Mizbeach, as documented in the Mishna in Suka 4:5


Wikipedia claims: " Among Sephardi Jews, .... In Amsterdam and in a few places in England, America, and elsewhere, the shofar is also sounded in connection with the processions. The latter practice reflects the idea that Hoshana Rabbah is the end of the High Holy Day season, when the world is judged for the coming year."

However, I did not find a mention of it in the קיצור ש''ע ילקוט יוסף, so they may be confusing Sephardi with Chasidish/Nusach Sephard.

  • 1
    It's also possible that this was the minhag of the Western Sephardim and that it was not adhered to among Eastern Sephardim (Edot haMizrach) Sep 20 '15 at 14:27

It is a custom of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews globally. I just came from hearing it at Cong. Shearith Israel a few hours ago! The best source is probably the Keter Shem Tov of Shem Tov Guaguine. While the custom is quite old I have not been able to trace its source.

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    +1 Welcome to the site David, and thank you for contributing! Perhaps consider improving this answer by editing in the nature of Cong. Shearith Israel and the Keter Shem Tov of Shem Tov Guaguine. The more specific the references, the better. (Links to sources are also appreciated). Hope to see you around the site.
    – mevaqesh
    Oct 4 '15 at 16:50

Sorry I just realized I did not look at this posting of mine for a year. Not sure what you were looking for by Congregation Shearith Israel (8 West 70th Street) is the oldest Kehilla in North America. On Hoshana Rabba they blow the shofar at the end of each Hakafah and they use tune from Neilah.

As far as the Keter Shem Tov - Volume 7 deals with Hoshana Rabbah from page 142 onwards. Shem Tov Gauguine was the Principal (in the 30's I believe) of the Judith Montefiore Theological College in Ramsgate, which eventually became part of Jews' College in London and has been revived as Montifiore College a few years ago (https://www.montefioreendowment.org.uk/college/semicha/)

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