These days, it seems the term "Sephardi/Sephardic" simply refers to non-Ashkenazi Jews. However, since Greece, Balkans, and of course Spain and Portugal are a long way from Iran, Iraq, Egypt, it leaves me wondering: what are the differences between the first group and the latter one? How would practices differ between a Jew from Salonika (who presumably traces his roots to Spain) vs a Jew in Tehran?

Also, a rabbi mentioned to me that the differences could be said to be "Sefard vs Sefardi??" IDK if I misheard him or what.

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    If it helps to clarify, Nusach Sefard is a modified version of Nusach Ashkenaz. Nusach Edot HaMizrach is the standard Nusach prayed by Sepharadic Jews today, but, as its name implies, of Eastern origin.
    – MDjava
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 5:06
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    What do you mean by "OG"?
    – msh210
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 5:27
  • You might find this interesting: en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Musta%27arabi_Jews Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 7:37
  • MDJava's link is outdated. Here's the new link to the Wikipedia page on Sephardi and Mizrahi nusakhoth: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/… Commented Apr 10 at 23:06

1 Answer 1


The main difference between the two nusachot would be the absence of any Lurianic additions in the Spanish-Portuguese rite.

After the incident with the false messiah Shabbatai Zevi, who used Lurianic kabbalah to deceive people and justify abolishing certain mitzvot (such as brit milah), the Spanish-Portuguese communities removed any kabbalistic additions to the siddur.

Siddurim in Mizrahi communties however continue to include these emendations based on kabbalah, and never removed them from the text.

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    Although I don't know their siddurim in detail, I'm not 100% sure, especially after the Chida's siddur. Do you have any sources? Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 7:35
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    Kazi bacsi is right sepharadic sidurim from Italia, Maroco and Alger are generally following Arizal
    – kouty
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 9:34
  • @kouty And how does that contradict what I said? I said Spanish-Portuguese siddurim removed the kabbalistic emendations, not Moroccan, Italian, etc.
    – ezra
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 18:30
  • The Portuguese and Spanish community were not in Portugal, but paritally in Livorno in Marocco, in Holland, in England, in Turkey
    – kouty
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 18:44
  • But anyway this communities were edot hamaarav
    – kouty
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 18:46

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