בסיעתא דשמיא

Transcribing a French collection of tkhines and alternative prayers for the synagogue (circa 1848)

Join us in creating a faithful digital transcription of אמרי לב Prières D’un Cœur Israélite (Arnaud Aron and Jonas Ennery, 1848). After transcription and proofreading, this new digital edition will need to be encoded in TEI XML and archived in the Open Siddur database. The edition will be shared under a Creative Commons Zero (CC0) Public Domain dedication. . . .

אמרי לב | Imrei Lev – Meditations And Prayers For Every Situation And Occasion In Life by Jonas Ennery, translated by Isaac Leeser (1863)

General public forms of prayer may not always be adapted to the peculiar exigencies of every mind; the compilers of this work have therefore striven to supply in some measure this spiritual need, by meditations and prayers suited to every situation and occasion in life; and it has been the humble yet anxious endeavour of the translator to preserve the spirit of the original in its English garb. . . .

Hanna. Gebet- und Andachtsbuch für israelitische Frauen und Mädchen. (Jacob Freund et al, 1867)

After the popular reception among German speaking Jewry of Fanny Neuda’s Stunden Der Andacht (1855), additional sifrei teḥinnot, collections of prayers composed in the vernacular for women, were published in German. One of them, Hanna. Gebet- und Andachtsbuch für israelitische Frauen und Mädchen, published in 1867, was compiled with teḥinnot composed by the leading luminaries of Liberal Judaism in Breslau, Silesia: Jacob Freund (1827-1877), Rabbi Abraham Geiger (1810-1874), and Rabbi Moritz Güdemann (1835-1918), Manuel Joël (1826-1890), and Moritz Abraham Levy (1817-1872). The title of the collection is a direct reference to the biblical figure, Ḥanna whose petitionary prayer for a child was answered with the birth of her son, the prophet Shmuel. . . .

Stunden Der Andacht (Fanny Schmiedl Neuda, 1855)

I have the great pleasure to be sharing a crowdsourced labor of love, the first book of prayers that the Open Siddur Project has completely proofread on Wikisource: Stunden Der Andacht (Hours of Devotion, 1855) by Fanny Schmiedl Neuda. I initially prepared the transcription from the 145-page, 1858 edition of Stunden Der Andacht with Tesseract-OCR and a scan of the book made by Google Books. Many thanks to Open Siddur Project contributor and volunteer, Chajm Guski, for helping to upload the transcription to the German Wikisource site. Many thanks go to the untold numbers of volunteer proofreaders, both veteran Wikisource volunteers as well as the many folk who came to proofread the text after seeing a tweet, facebook status update, or reading an email asking for German fluent readers for help. . . .

Am Laubhüttenfest beim Kreisgang mit dem Lulaw und Esrog by Fanny Neuda (1855)

Herr des Weltalls, reich geschmückt mit deinen Gaben und Segnungen hast du die Natur. Das Thal mit seinem üppigen Grün, der Berg mit seinem Kranz von Wäldern, das Gefilde mit seiner lachenden Frucht ist ein Erzeugnis; deiner Gnade, zum Segen deiner Menschenkinder, zur Nahrung ihres Leibes, zur Stillung ihrer Bedürfnisse, zur Ergötzung ihres Auges, zum Balsam ihrer Wunden; und kein Blättchen ist so klein, kein Grashalm so niedrig in dem weiten Reiche der Natur, daß es nicht wohlthuende heilsame Kräfte für uns enthielte. . . .

An den ersten Tagen des Laubhüttenfestes: A prayer for the first days of Sukkot by Fanny Neuda (1855)

As part of our ongoing project creating a new digital edition of Fanny Neuda’s collection of tkhines in German, Stunden Der Andacht (1855), we are setting her prayers (for the first time ever) side by side with that of her work’s first English translation, Hours of Devotion (1866) by Rabbi Moritz Mayer. Abermals ist ein Fest für uns eingetreten, ein Fest, ganz verschieden von dem, das wir erst jüngst begangen. Jenes feierten wir durch Thränen und Bußübungen, durch Kasteiung und Entbehrung, dieses feiern wir in Freuden mit Jubel und Lobgesängen, wie da geschrieben steht: „Und ihr sollt Euch freuen vor dem Ewigen, eurem Herrn, sieben Tage lang.“ . . .

Hours of Devotion: Fanny Neuda’s Stunden Der Andacht translated with additional prayers by Rabbi Moritz Mayer (1866)

Stunden Der Andacht, Fanny Neuda (nèe Schmiedl)’s popular collection of prayers written in German and published in Prague in 1855 was already in its fifth printing a decade later when Rabbi Moritz Mayer published his English translation, Hours of Devotion (1866) in New York. Neuda’s collection of Jewish prayers is unique by virtue of its being possibly the first to authored by a Jewish woman. . . .

It’s All Greek To Me–Praying in Languages Other than Hebrew (sourcesheet) by R’ Ethan Tucker

Language is simultaneously a portal and a barrier to prayer. Jews have prayed in Hebrew for millennia, yet our oldest sources also speak of prayer in other languages. Come explore the history of the language of prayer, how our linguistic preferences define what prayer is about, and how we might approach this issue today. . . .

שמחת בת | Simḥat Bat by Rabbi Elie Kaunfer and Lisa Exler

In place of the blood of the slaughtered bulls from the covenantal ceremony in Exodus, we looked for another substance to effect the covenant ceremony. Amalya was born right after Shavuot, on which we have a tradition to eat dairy. In fact, milk itself is associated with the acceptance of Torah, as described in the following Midrash which quotes a verse from Song of Songs (4:11): “Sweetness drops from your lips, O bride; honey and milk are under your tongue and the scent of your robes is like the scent of Lebanon.” . . .


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