Is there an explanation for why this chapter of tehilim was written according to the Aleph Bet, and why it skips the vav?

  • 2
    See Rada"k on the 1st verse. The vav is included in the pasuk that has heh. Rada"k doesn't explain why this is.
    – DanF
    Feb 5, 2018 at 22:45
  • 1
    @DanF Sounds somewhat like an answer, if you can find an explanation why that is.
    – ezra
    Feb 6, 2018 at 0:04
  • @DanF Meiri says that too. Although, he may have just gotten it from Radak.
    – user8726
    Feb 6, 2018 at 6:36
  • You may not find an answer as to why this Tehillim is alphabetical. AFAIK, the Gemarah Brachot emphasizes saying Tehilla Ledavid (#145, commonly called "Ashrei") because it is alphabetical, but they don't explain why that one, among other Tehillim are alphabetical. It was a common technique to make "songs" alphabetical probably for memorization, mainly. Why David chose #34, specifically, as one of them, may not have an explanation.
    – DanF
    Feb 6, 2018 at 16:29
  • This article addresses both questions by positing that alphabetic thinking contributed to both its composition and its consumption. (The clear evocation of such a framework does away with the need to complete the acrostic, having achieved it sufficiently with the preponderant pattern.)
    – WAF
    Sep 2, 2018 at 21:20

1 Answer 1


The Radak there explains that it was made in Aleph Bet order because of the happiness from his escape:

מרוב השמחה ששמח דוד בהנצלו עשה שירה זו באל״ף בי״ת

As noted in the comments by DanF, Radak notes that the vav line is included in the hei line of:

הביטו אליו ונהרו ופניהם אל יחפרו

This is not uncommon in piyutim, songs, and even tehillim, etc, see, for example the comments to this question.

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