I'm looking for the source in the Gemorah which says there was once a community that said Hallel on a day that wasn't Rosh Chodesh, and that even though it wasn't the correct minhag it was seen as something to keep. I think it might be in Maseches Taanis, or the Yerushalmi, but I can't find it.


1 Answer 1


You're probably thinking of the story of Rav's visit to Bavel, recorded on Taanit 28b, but you got the Rosh Chodesh part of it confused.

While most people nowadays are used to thinking of Rosh Chodesh as the best example of a Hallel day, really Rosh Chodesh is not a Hallel day at all. Hallel is recited on the entire holidays of Sukkot and Chanukkah as well as the first day[s] of Pesach and Shavuot [and the Seder night[s]]. That's it.

Rav visited Bavel and was upset to find them reciting Hallel on Rosh Chodesh which is not a traditional Hallel day. He soon calmed down when he noticed they were skipping parts to indicate it was just a fake-Hallel: some nice Psalms to help enliven a minor holiday. That's the custom you see nowadays to recite a fake-Hallel (generally known as "Half Hallel") on Rosh Chodesh [and the latter 6 days of Pesach].

רב איקלע לבבל חזינהו דקא קרו הלילא בריש ירחא סבר לאפסוקינהו כיון דחזא דקא מדלגי דלוגי אמר שמע מינה מנהג אבותיהם בידיהם
Rav came to Bavel. He saw that they read Hallel on Rosh Chodesh. He thought to stop them. Once he say that they were skipping around, he deduced that it was just a custom of their fathers.

  • Latter 6 days of Pesach is an actual Chiyuv, though (Erchin 10b explains why it’s just half). Your wording implies it’s just minhag, same as Rosh Chodesh.
    – DonielF
    Commented Jun 5, 2018 at 3:02
  • @DonielF Huh???
    – Double AA
    Commented Jun 5, 2018 at 3:06
  • “Why on Sukkos do we say full Hallel every day, but on Pesach we don’t say full Hallel every day? Sukkos has different Karbanos each day, but Pesach doesn’t have different Karbanos each day.” The Gemara takes it as a given that we should say Hallel on Pesach every day and only questions why we don’t say full Hallel. Rosh Chodesh doesn’t even show up in that Gemara.
    – DonielF
    Commented Jun 5, 2018 at 3:08
  • I know the Gemara. That's a mistaken translation. Where is it from?
    – Double AA
    Commented Jun 5, 2018 at 3:14
  • My own. How do you understand it?
    – DonielF
    Commented Jun 5, 2018 at 3:15

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