i recently got into a debate with a user here as to whether or not Pashta was a conjunctive or disjunctive accent (see chat transcript).

My position was based on the fact that when i was taught the te'amim, and the name of the te'amim, that there was no Pashta, but rather i was taught that there was only Qadma. This was presented as true by the recordings put out by the Egyptian community in New York as well as a list compiled by the former Chief Rabbi of Alexandria

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When that user looked into it, he found that this was indeed a common situation, where most Sephardim don't distinguish between Pashta an Qadma. This doesn't seem to be a matter of a few ba'al qorim not knowing the difference, but a lack of distinction amongst teachers and written materials. As evidenced by the Zarqa table on Wikipedia which lacks distinction

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As well as this video my Moshe Chabusha (one of the leading Sephardic Cantors in the world) recording the Jerusalem Sephardic Te'amim and the Iraqi Te'amim, both of which lacking a Pashta


Here is a page from a book that shows the different names for the trope. It shows a repetition of the Ashkenazi name Pashta, each time linking it to a Sephardi equivalent, sometimes showing it as a qadma, others as a pashta (apparently this book was written when sephardim still had a Pashta) and once as T'rei Qadmin but the t'rei qadmin is only used for a Pashta that has two trope symbols, and is otherwise called a shenei pashtin, the document shows that this Pashta is different than the earlier ones in the list as it is shown with two trope symbols above the name, whereas the others only have 1.

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So my question is what happened to the Pashta in the Sephardic heritage?

  • Everyone please beware that while different traditions may have different names for various accents (see table), this question is about the two different notes that Ashkenazim call Kadma and Pashta independent of what others call them to distinguish them. – Double AA Apr 15 '16 at 18:58
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    Many Ashkenazim don't know the difference either, sadly. It just is a sad fact of our reality that the Torah reading at most synagogues is grammatically sub-par :( – Double AA Apr 15 '16 at 19:08
  • @DoubleAA Yes, but at least in your books it is still written as a separate entity, whereas many Sephardic Lists/Books don't have or teach any distinction at all. – Aaron Apr 15 '16 at 19:14
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    That table you include has "trei kadmin" and "kadma". Seemingly, the "trei kadmin" is what an ashkenazi would call "pashta" – Double AA Apr 15 '16 at 19:35
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    I've never heard of such a thing and highly doubt its existence. – Double AA Apr 15 '16 at 19:51

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