In the song "ברוך א׳ עליון" (text) is the line:

וְהוּא יִדְרֹשׁ לְצִיּוֹן עִיר הַנִּדָּחָה

My grandfather, ע״ה, when singing this line, would replace הַנִּדָּחָה with another word (I think הַנִּשְׁבָּרָה). The reason for this is that there's a concept in קדשים of "כיון שנדחה ידחה" (once something is נדחה, 'pushed away' from being allowed on the altar, it's forever נדחה and can never be allowed on the altar). Saying Tziyon is forever 'pushed away' is both false and seemingly in denial of the coming of the third bes hamikdash, and my grandfather, apparently, or whomever he got this practice from, didn't want to even seem to imply it.

My question is whether this is a documented or known practice or version. (Not necessarily replacing הנדחה with הנשברה specifically, but with anything.) Where could my grandfather have gotten it from? A second question is whether anyone comments on the inappropriateness of the line in light of "כיון שנדחה ידחה".‎

3 Answers 3


Artscroll זמירות לשבת (with sources) page 185:

וְהוּא יִדְרֹשׁ לְצִיּוֹן עִיר הַנִּדָּחָה - May He seek out Zion the outcast city.

The phrase is based on Jeremiah 30:17 where Jerusalem - Zion - is called outcast because no one cares about her. The prayer is, therefore, that God end this tragic status by seeking out Zion and making her once again the site of His Temple and Shechinah (Mateh Yehuda; Iyun Tefillah).

Like almost all verses in piyoutim this one is also based on a Pasuk. This I gather would make it difficult to call the verse inappropriate.

  • 1
    Not sure that the verse is citing the appellation "Nidacha" with approval; on the contrary, it seems to be bemoaning the fact that people have pushed Tzion from their minds and are not inquiring after it.
    – Barry
    Commented Jun 6, 2011 at 16:24
  • 1
    @Barry, right -- everyone else has given up on the city, but G-d will press its cause.
    – Shalom
    Commented Nov 10, 2011 at 2:35

I had assumed that this objection was due to not wanting to call Yerushalayim an Ir Hanidachas; or else just describing Yerushalayim in negative terms. I daven in a shteibel in Kew Gardens Hills, Rabbi Freidman's shul (the Ulemer Rebbe, affiliated with Spinka), and the sefer they use for shalashudes has עיר המשובחה, ir hameshubacha, in its place. And this is supposed to reflect their nusach. Bli neder, I'll try to check the author, etc., next time I'm there.

I personally don't think the line is inappropriate as it stands and as was presumably initially penned. One can raise all sorts of objections, but that does not make them solid objections. We say in davening mekabeitz nidchei amo yisrael, and this is no objection. That said, I haven't seen in print anyone commenting on the inappropriateness.

Update: The other day, I checked out the sefer (put out by the rabbi's son). They had Baruch kel elyon twice, once for Shabbos day and once for shaleshudes. And in the first, they had ir hanidacha while in the second, they had ir hameshubacha. After maariv, I asked the rabbi about it. He told me that it was not the Spinker nusach, but one that he had seen around, and that perhaps the printers had put it in (in the second instance). He regarded it as a modern innovation, which he would never say; and thought that perhaps it was a Zionist innovation. So, I suppose, back to the drawing board, as to the reason. The variant nusach does exist in printed works; that much, we can establish.


BS"D There is a nussach of עיר המשובחה that I actually grew up with from my father z"l who received it from his grandfather. I searched for many years to find the source and came upon the Gemara Bava Kama 82b where it says that Yerushalayim cannot be a עיר הנדחת . See also Rambam hilchos avoda zara 4:4 (which I became aware of recently) Years later I found a zemiros that confirmed my assumption and attributed this nussach to Rebbe Meier of Premishlan.

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