There is a common custom amongst many to recite the words

אל מלך נאמן

before Kriyas Shema when there is no minyan. However, in all Chabad siddurim I have davened from, this phrase is not there. Why is this?

  • Maybe it's not as common as you thought...
    – Double AA
    Mar 29, 2017 at 2:38

1 Answer 1


The First Chabad Rebbe, known as the Alter Rebbe (and also known as "The Rav (Ba'al HaTanya)", the author of Shulchan Aruch Harav) writes in his Siddur:

יחיד המתפלל לעצמו יחזור תיבות אני ה' אלהיכם

An individual praying alone should repeat the words Ani Hashem Eloheichem

This is to exclude minhag ashkenaz (and what he writes in his Shulchan Aruch) that an individual says "אל מלך נאמן".

  • Could you please translate?
    – SAH
    Aug 13, 2018 at 10:25
  • Thanks so much. That's fascinating. Do we know for sure "keyl melech neemon" is excluded on this account?
    – SAH
    Aug 13, 2018 at 18:46
  • Also, if one is saying less than the whole Shema - for example, just "Shema Yisroel" - should one then say the Keyl Melech neemon, because one will not be repeating "Ani - E-lokeichem"?
    – SAH
    Aug 14, 2018 at 0:58
  • @SAH "Do we know for sure "keyl melech neemon" is excluded on this account?" It's not printed in the Siddur, and the quote I brought is from where "keyl melech neemon" would have been mentioned.
    – user9643
    Aug 14, 2018 at 15:30
  • @SAH If one is not saying the whole Shema, there's little reason to say anything extra (see here and here - unfortunately there are no answers yet for those questions).
    – user9643
    Aug 14, 2018 at 15:38

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