16 votes

What is the modern Jewish interpretation of Exodus 12:11?

The Mishnah cites eating in haste as one of the few differences between the paschal offering that first year and that of subsequent years. The modern Passover meal is modeled primarily on the latter.
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16 votes

What is the minimum number of people for a seder?

Shulchan Aruch, OC 473:7, gives instructions for what to do if by yourself, from which we see that that's a possibility.
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15 votes
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Seeking mnemonic for the order of the Pesach Seder

Here are some more simple ones: גפן. קידוש. [נר. הבדלה.] זמן. נטילת. ירקות. אדטה. וטבל. בצע. עניא. כסא. ונשתנה. נטילת. שלימה מוציא. ופרוס אכילת עמה. חסא. מרור. טבל. כרך. וסעד. בצוע. מפטיר. ונוטל. ...
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14 votes
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Chad Gadya: The price of a kid goat

A colleague of mine reminded me that there is actually a Gemara in Berachos 44b that describes a young healthy goat as a 'bar zuza', meaning it costs one zuz. He explained that although Chad Gadya ...
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13 votes
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What is the origin of the song Echad Mi Yodeya?

The Encyclopaedia Judaica, cited in the Wikipedia article linked in the comments above, states as follows: Eḥad Mi Yode'a is first found in Haggadot of the 16th century and only in those of the ...
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10 votes
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Is is prefered to have the Pasach meal on the first or second night?

In Israel, only the first night is a full holiday, and as such, the Seder is only ever on the first night. In the Diaspora, both the first and second nights are full holidays. The Seder should be ...
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10 votes

How many people are needed to eat a korban pesach in one night?

Enlightened by the approaches taken in other answers and encouraged by the large number of views, I suggest this analysis as an answer to my own question. There is agreement on the web that dressed ...
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10 votes
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Jewish viewpoint on Gentiles celebrating a Christian Seder?

An ex-Christian once described to me the seder that her church did when she was growing up. It was adapted from the haggadah, the text that we Jews use, but it had some Christian overlays. I don't ...
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What's the deal with horseradish at the seder?

TLDR: The Talmud's preferred plant for Maror is lettuce-like and leafy. In cold climates people started using horseradish root because it was still too cold to grow leafy plants at Pesach time, and if ...
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10 votes
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Is there a halachic preference order to the grains used for matzot?

The Mishna in Pesachim 2:5 reads as follows: אלו דברים שאדם יוצא בהן ידי חובתו בפסח: בחיטים, בשעורים, בכוסמין ובשיפון ובשיבולת שועל These are the things with which a person may discharge his ...
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10 votes
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What's the source for the מעשה בר' אליעזר... שהיו מסובין of the הגדה?

This source isn't found anywhere in the same form (Daniel Goldschmidt says this in his haggadah). But compare Tosefta Pesachim 10:8: מעשה ברבן גמליאל וזקנים שהיו מסובין בבית ביתוס בן זונין בלוד והיו [...
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9 votes
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Why is Moshe (mostly) absent from the haggadah?

The sefer "HaSeder HaAruch" (vol. 2 chapter 129) brings several answers to this question: Moshe did not accomplish the desired goal of the Exodus from Egypt. The actual redemption was only brought ...
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9 votes
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Is the Rambam Haggadah Significantly Different?

Some highlights (you can glean this by simply reading Mishna Torah, but of course you have to compare it to a regular seder): Say a Bracha Achrona on the wine after every cup (at least according to ...
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9 votes
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Sources of the story about drinking milk to fulfill the four cups at the seder

In her book about the family heritage, Shulamit Soloveitchik Meiselman writes this exact story about her great-grandfather¹, Rav Yoshe Ber Soloveitchik². Also known as the Beis HaLevi. The book is ...
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9 votes

Does my uncircumcised friend still needs to be circumcised in order to join the meal for Pesach?

Many laws applied to the Passover offering that do not apply to the Seder. For example, the Passover offering can only be eaten by people who are Tahor (a specific form of ritual purity). There is no ...
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8 votes

Answers to the Mah Nishtanah

I'll deal with one potential aspect of your question, and hopefully others will be able to add more: to what extent are the questions in Mah Nishtanah answered within the text of Mah Nishtanah itself? ...
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8 votes
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The Seder & diabetes

There's a Jewish Diabetes Association - guide for diabetics that puts out a list of the minimum shiurim; normally we say "oh play it safe and eat a larger amount of matza/wine just to be safe", but ...
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8 votes

Any practical tips for leaning when seated in an armless dining-room chair?

I've turned the chair sideways (i.e., the chair back is perpendicular to the table), draped a pillow over the back and leaned my hand over the pillow and the back. Don't use a high-back chair for this....
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8 votes

Oops! Out of wine for the 3rd cup. What do we do?

The Shulchan Aruch, in Orach Chaim 472:10 says: מי שאינו שותה יין מפני שמזיקו או שונאו צריך לדחוק עצמו ולשתות לקיים מצות ארבע כוסות:‏ Someone who doesn't drink wine because it hurts him, or he hates ...
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8 votes
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Responses to the Chacham and Tam

Menachem Ben Yashar provides a fascinating answer here, very summarized as follows: The Yerushalmi's version was written during the time of the Beis Hamikdash, and thus, there was a real Halachic ...
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8 votes

What is the reason we say שפך חמתך, pour out your wrath?

Ritva explains that there are two reasons for the inclusion of this verse (Jeremiah 10:25) at this point in the Haggada. First of all, because the four cups correspond to the four retributions God ...
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8 votes

why does the ma nishtana say we dip 2 times when we actually dip 3 times?

This question can be addressed by noting that there is a dispute among the rishonim whether Korech should get dipped at all. See Tur O.C. 475 with commentaries, and Shulchan Aruch there with ...
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8 votes

Is there such a thing as a kosher replacement for the egg on the Pesach plate?

Mishnah Pesahim 10:3 states: הביאו לפניו מצה וחזרת וחרוסת ושני תבשלין They bring before him matzah, lettuce, haroset and two cooked dishes. As we will see, these 'two cooked dishes' are what ...
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8 votes

Is there such a thing as a kosher replacement for the egg on the Pesach plate?

The Gemara (Pesachim 114b) tells us what different amora'im held one should eat in fulfillment of the two cooked dishes, and so obviously there are kosher alternatives (though maybe not the option of ...
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8 votes

Why isn't the bracha "Al Achillat Matzah" said before eating the Afikoman?

Rashi himself asks your question on Pesachim 119b! His answer (quoting a principle of Rav Chisdah regarding maror from Pesachim 115a) is: לאחר שמילא כריסו הימנו היאך חוזר ומברך עליו After he ...
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8 votes

Do they change the text of the haggadah in Israel?

Many commentaries do not take this at all literally. On that basis saying this phrase in Israel would be as the authors intended, and one would not need to change to another phrase because it wasn’t ...
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We dip karpas because of aristocracy

I don't know if this the earliest source, but Don Yitzchak Abravanel in his commentary Zevach Pesach on the Haggadah uses this idea: כי הנה בכל הלילות אין אנו חייבין לטבל אפילו פעם אחת. והלילה הזה ...
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7 votes

Why does the Haggadah interpret ביד חזקה as referring to דבר?

Each plague was done with a finger of Hashem, as it says "אצבע אלקים היא" (Shemos 8:15) by כנים, and דבר was the fifth plague, making it 5 fingers, a full hand. (my) Source: Maaseh Nisim Hagada by ...
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Why do we say ha-motzi before al achilat matzah instead of after?

There's a concept called "תדיר ושאינו תדיר, תדיר קודם", which loosely translated means "between something frequent and something infrequent, we do the frequent first" (see Mishna Zevachim 10:1). In ...
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