Is it just a fancy name for the Poylishe minhogim, or what? Is any Nusach Sfard siddur automatically minhog Polin or is it more specific?

  • 2
    Nusach Sfard isn't a Poylishe minhog. It's something Chasidim invented.
    – Double AA
    Commented Dec 1, 2016 at 18:31
  • Then what is the Poylishe minhog?
    – ezra
    Commented Dec 1, 2016 at 18:34
  • Seemingly, what everyone did before Chasidim started reforming the local practices. If someone shows up in town and changes everything, would you say that person is following the town's minhogim? Of course not. That would be the exact opposite.
    – Double AA
    Commented Dec 1, 2016 at 18:34
  • @DoubleAA, Nusach Sefard may have been invented before the chassidim. If the hakdamah to the Chaba"d siddur is to be believed, then Nusach Sefard was created by R' Yitzchak Luria Ashkenazi (I take this with a large amount of salt). Commented Dec 1, 2016 at 19:48
  • 1
    @kouty, I'm not sure your assessment it correct. Referring to Minhogei heChassidim as "Minhog Polin" is a disingenuous over-generalisation of a significantly more complex puzzle. Commented Dec 1, 2016 at 21:32

2 Answers 2


Minhag Polin refers to liturgical variations within the Ashkenazi community which differ from the practice in Germany. Current mainstream Ashkenazi practice is close to Minhag Polin (because the community in Poland and their descendants demographically overwhelm German Jews). So, though Askhenaz literally refers to Germany, the specific customs of Germany (Minhag Ashkenaz) are the exception, not the rule, in the current Ashkenazi world.

Examples of Polin / Ashkenaz variants (Minhag Polin listed first):

  • Birkat Ha-Torah immediately following Elohai Neshama vs. Birkot Ha-Shahar immediately following Elohai Neshama, followed then by Birkat Ha-Torah.
  • Psukim of Birkat Cohanim as the material for learning after Birkat Ha-Torah vs. Parashat Ha-Tamid as the material for learning.
  • Shalom Rav vs. Sim Shalom in the Amidah of Shabbat Minhah.

Nusah Sfard is a separate issue and refers to variations applied by the Hasidim to Askhenazi liturgy.

  • There are plenty of differences in other more ordinary parts of prayer too, just Siddurim don't always print the variants.
    – Double AA
    Commented Aug 24, 2017 at 14:18
  • I think that what @doubleAA is referring to is the collection of variant girsaot in most siddur paragraphs not excerpted from Tana"ch. Commented Aug 24, 2017 at 15:32
  • Relevant question: judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/45891/…
    – paquda
    Commented Aug 24, 2017 at 17:08

Minhag Poylin pretty much refers to the Minhogim of central polish chassidus. Also Nusach Sefard is not automatically Poylish. Nusach Sefard is based of Nusach haAri"zal with certain motifications by the Baal Shem Tov Ztz"l and his Talmidim.

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