In general, the conventional division of the books of Tanach into chapters is not based on Jewish tradition but on Christian invention. However, there are some books of Tanach in which various practices that I've seen seem to take the conventional chapter divisions into account, such as:

  • Reading a Psalm (i.e. chapter of Tehillim) as a unit, either as part of formal liturgy or as informal prayer.

  • In public readings of all five Megillot, singing a concluding flourish at the ends of chapters.

Are the conventional chapter breaks in Tehillim, any of the Megillot, or any other complete book of Tanach entirely consistent with a Jewish tradition for breaking up that book?

  • 1
    related judaism.stackexchange.com/q/36805/4940
    – magicker72
    Commented Dec 14, 2016 at 15:17
  • Some old editions of Eikha have four chapters (the latter two are put together) FWIW. It's clear the 5 chapters of Eikha are distinct units. Is that enough? What do you need to prove that those are "Jewish stops"?
    – Double AA
    Commented Dec 14, 2016 at 15:28
  • Some editions of Tehillim have 147 chapters judaism.stackexchange.com/a/4684/759 . Does this answer the question, or are you wondering if the 150 is a Jewish tradition too, even if not universal?
    – Double AA
    Commented Dec 14, 2016 at 15:29
  • @DoubleAA A write-up of that whole issue (along the lines of Tehillim: according to some, yes; according to some, almost, ...) would be constitute great answer.
    – Isaac Moses
    Commented Dec 14, 2016 at 15:32
  • @DoubleAA Do you have a reference for 4-chapter Eikha?
    – magicker72
    Commented Dec 14, 2016 at 15:32

1 Answer 1


The book of Obadiah has one chapter. I haven't seen anyone break it into multiple chapters.

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    I'm not sure if the OP was counting Trei Asar as 12 or 1 unit(s). He should clarify.
    – Double AA
    Commented Dec 14, 2016 at 15:49

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